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Quid pro quo will define the author-publisher relationship - Peter Meyers on HTML5, ebook formats and the evolution of publishers and authors.

Quid pro quo will define the author-publisher relationship - Peter Meyers on HTML5, ebook formats and the evolution of publishers and authors.
By Jenn Webb
December 20, 2011

In this video interview, author and digital book producer Peter Meyers addresses the state of ebooks and book apps and weighs in on the changing relationship between authors and publishers.

Four short links: 19 December 2011 - Version Control, Web-based ID, Mobile Design, and Node.js Tools

By Nat Torkington
December 19, 2011

The History of Version Control (Francis Irving) -- concise history of the key advances in managing source code versions. Worth it just for the delicious apposition of "history" and "version control". BrowserID -- Mozilla's authentication solution. BrowserID aims to provide a secure way of proving your identity to servers across the Internet, without having to create separate usernames and...

Top Stories: December 12-16, 2011 - Five data predictions for 2012, a Kindle Single and long-form journalism, and the frustrations of the mobile experience.

Top Stories: December 12-16, 2011 - Five data predictions for 2012, a Kindle Single and long-form journalism, and the frustrations of the mobile experience.
By Mac Slocum
December 16, 2011

This week on O'Reilly: Edd Dumbill offered five big data predictions for the year to come, Marc Herman discussed his new Kindle Single and how that platform could help long-form journalism, and Joshua Bixby examined mobile frustrations and expectations.

Strata Newsletter: November 30, 2011 - The rise of Clojure and a look at the design behind data visualizations.

Strata Newsletter: November 30, 2011 - The rise of Clojure and a look at the design behind data visualizations.
By Mac Slocum
December 1, 2011

Highlights from the 11/30/11 edition of the Strata newsletter include: Clojure is a rising star in the data world, a look at the top data news, and a deep dive into data visualization design.

Top Stories: November 14-18, 2011 - America's tech schizophrenia, why Apple fans don't like Android, and the terrifying importance of embedded systems.

Top Stories: November 14-18, 2011 - America's tech schizophrenia, why Apple fans don't like Android, and the terrifying importance of embedded systems.
By Mac Slocum
November 18, 2011

This week on O'Reilly: Doug Hill used Steve Jobs and Ted Kaczynski to examine America's love/hate relationship with technology, Mike Loukides criticized mobile carriers for messing with Android's UI, and engineer Elecia White shared her enthusiasm for embedded systems.

Understanding Apple fans - There's a gap between Google's version of Android what the mobile carriers deliver.

Understanding Apple fans - There's a gap between Google's version of Android what the mobile carriers deliver.
By Mike Loukides
November 17, 2011

AT&T and other carriers are not helping Android, or themselves, by turning a great product into a second-rate one. And maybe I'm getting soft in my old age, but I now understand what Apple fans hate about Android.

What we could do with really big touchscreens - Ten-inch tablets are just the start of the touchscreen publishing revolution.

What we could do with really big touchscreens - Ten-inch tablets are just the start of the touchscreen publishing revolution.
By Peter Meyers
November 17, 2011

If we could combine the touchscreen's ability to signal our layout wishes with the large displays and workspaces that many of us enjoy at our work desks, wouldn't that change the kinds of documents we create?

Four short links: 3 November 2011 - Getting Feedback, Colour Design, Discovering Musicians, Weather Prediction App

By Nat Torkington
November 3, 2011

Feedback Without Frustration (YouTube) -- Scott Berkun at the HIVE conference talks about how feedback fails, and how to get it successfully. He is so good. Americhrome -- history of the official palette of the United States of America. Discovering Talented Musicians with Musical Analysis (Google Research blgo) -- very clever, they do acoustical analysis and then train up...

Note to visualization creators: Add subtitles and narration - Embedded information makes animated visualizations more accessible.

Note to visualization creators: Add subtitles and narration - Embedded information makes animated visualizations more accessible.
By Mac Slocum
October 20, 2011

An animated visualization from NASA shows how subtitles and simple narration can make complex graphics easier to understand. We need more of this.

Four short links: 14 October 2011 - Relativity in Short Words, Set Math, Design Inspiration, and Internet of Things

By Nat Torkington
October 14, 2011

Theory of Relativity in Words of Four Letters or Less -- this does just what it says, and well too. I like it, as you may too. At the end, you may even know more than you do now. Effective Set Reconciliation Without Prior Context (PDF) -- paper on using Bloom filters to do set union (deduplication) efficiently. Useful...

Four short links: 12 October 2011 - Google Platforms, Securing Software, Interactive Design, and Building Proverbs

By Nat Torkington
October 12, 2011

Steve Yegge's Google Platforms Rant -- epic. Read it. (updated with new link) Guidelines for Securing Open Source Software (EFF) -- advice from the team that audited some commonly-used open source libraries. Avoid giving the user options that could compromise security, in the form of modes, dialogs, preferences, or tweaks of any sort. As security expert Ian Grigg puts...

Linking in ebooks: How much is too much? - Ebook hyperlinks don't always lead to a smooth reading experience.

Linking in ebooks: How much is too much? - Ebook hyperlinks don't always lead to a smooth reading experience.
By Peter Meyers
October 11, 2011

Ebook producers must decide if the destinations behind embedded links are worth the disruptions they might cause.

On the media reaction to the death of Steve Jobs - The events of the past week generated powerful reactions inside of the Radar team.

By Alex Howard
October 9, 2011

In the context of worldwide reactions to the impact of Steve Jobs on the arc of history, recognizing the complexity of his life and offering a balanced assessment of the impact of his legacy on this earth matters. In that context, O'Reilly editors share their reflections on the passing of one of the technology industry's iconic figures.

Four short links: 28 September 2011 - Future Tech, Book Lawsuits, Site Design, and Sundae Problems

By Nat Torkington
September 28, 2011

Russell Davies: Four Thought (audio) -- some very nice thinking on the future of technology. The Fight Over the Future of Digital Books (The Atlantic) -- Authors Guild v. HathiTrust is a strange legal twist. For an association of professional writers, the Guild seems to have forgotten some of the basic principles of its craft, such as not placing...

Spoiler alert: The mouse dies. Touch and gesture take center stage - The shift toward more natural interfaces requires new thinking and skills.

Spoiler alert: The mouse dies. Touch and gesture take center stage - The shift toward more natural interfaces requires new thinking and skills.
By Jonathan Reichental, Ph.D.
September 28, 2011

As touch and gesture evolve from novelty to default, we must rethink how we build software, implement hardware, and design interfaces.

Four short links: 26 September 2011 - Design and Engineering Culture, Homemade Love, Code Tools, and Cyberbullying

By Nat Torkington
September 26, 2011

BERG London Week 328 -- we're a design company, with a design culture built over 6 years, yet we're having to cultivate a new engineering culture that sits within it and alongside it, and the two have different crystal grains. It's good that they do—engineering through a design process can feel harried and for some projects that does not...

Top Stories: September 19-23, 2011 - True data over big data, community building through data, and the choreography of digital design.

Top Stories: September 19-23, 2011 - True data over big data, community building through data, and the choreography of digital design.
By Mac Slocum
September 23, 2011

This week on O'Reilly: Alistair Croll explained why true data is more important than big data, we looked at how BuzzData is building community around datasets, and Liza Daly explained the connection between digital content and choreography.

Five digital design ideas from Windows 8 - With Metro, it's clear Microsoft has put a lot of thought into touchscreen design.

Five digital design ideas from Windows 8 - With Metro, it's clear Microsoft has put a lot of thought into touchscreen design.
By Peter Meyers
September 20, 2011

Microsoft's Metro interface offers plenty for digital book designers to study. The best part? Whether or not Microsoft actually ships something that matches their demo, designers can benefit from the great thinking they've done.

If you're a content designer, the web browser will be your canvas - Peter Brantley on designing and thinking browser first.

If you're a content designer, the web browser will be your canvas - Peter Brantley on designing and thinking browser first.
By Jenn Webb
September 12, 2011

The Internet Archive's Peter Brantley discusses the influence of web browsers on content design and the challenges of complex media.

To page or to scroll? - Digital book designers face a big question: Is it better to scroll or flip?

To page or to scroll? - Digital book designers face a big question: Is it better to scroll or flip?
By Peter Meyers
August 26, 2011

We all got comfortable scrolling through web pages a long time ago, but ereader and tablet design added a new quirk with the introduction of page flips. Here, Pete Meyers considers the applications of scrolling and flipping across reading environments.

Four short links: 11 August 2011 - Bad Web Sites, Gold Farming for Evil, Sensing Bicyclists, and Javascript Statistics

By Nat Torkington
August 11, 2011

Why Restaurant Web Sites Are So Bad -- The rest of the Web long ago did away with auto-playing music, Flash buttons and menus, and elaborate intro pages, but restaurant sites seem stuck in 1999. North Korean Government Partly Funded by Gold Farming (Gamasutra) -- alleges a special group of hackers built automation software for MMOs and sent part...

Four short links: 10 August 2011 - Gamification is Bullshit, Design for Impact, Public Domain, and Network Analysis

By Nat Torkington
August 10, 2011

Gamification is Bullshit (Ian Bogost) -- [G]amification is marketing bullshit, invented by consultants as a means to capture the wild, coveted beast that is videogames and to domesticate it for use in the grey, hopeless wasteland of big business, where bullshit already reigns anyway. Bullshitters are many things, but they are not stupid. The rhetorical power of the word...

Four short links: 5 August 2011 - Flexible Display, Free Icons, Virtualization, and Virtualization Management

By Nat Torkington
August 5, 2011

NanoLumens -- flexible display technology, 2.6lbs/sq ft (that's 17 kilofrancs/kelvin in metric, I think). (via Fiona Romeo) The Noun Project -- a vast collection of free-to-use icons. (via Russell Beattie) VirtualBox -- Sun Oracle's open source virtualization product, trivial to run multiple VMs on your local box. VirtualBoxes has pre-built VMs for common OSes. Vagrant -- tool for managing...

ePayments Week: Freemium is fruitful for mobile games - In-app purchases make free games pay, and iOS 5 reportedly adds facial recognition.

ePayments Week: Freemium is fruitful for mobile games - In-app purchases make free games pay, and iOS 5 reportedly adds facial recognition.
By David Sims
July 28, 2011

A report says that purchases through free mobile games are becoming the largest share of all mobile games revenue. Also, reports of a facial recognition API in iOS 5 surface, and a new technology tries to sell merchants on using consumers' webcams to scan their credit cards.

Four short links: 26 July 2011 - Advertising Keywords, Javascript Koans, Etsy Open Source Testing, Wieldy Selections

By Nat Torkington
July 26, 2011

Google Keyword Advertising -- interesting infographic about the most lucrative advertising categories for Google. #20 is an eye-opener! Javascript Koans (GitHub) -- an interactive learning environment that uses failing tests to introduce students to aspects of JavaScript in a logical sequence. (via Javascript Weekly) Etsy AB (GitHub) -- Etsy's framework for A/B testing, feature ramp up, and more. (via...

Four short links: 25 July 2011 - Minecraft Emergent Behaviour, Algorithmic 3D Printing, Automated MapReduce Optimization, and Multi-Device Preview

By Nat Torkington
July 25, 2011

Anonymity in Bitcoin -- TL;DR: Bitcoin is not inherently anonymous. It may be possible to conduct transactions is such a way so as to obscure your identity, but, in many cases, users and their transactions can be identified. We have performed an analysis of anonymity in the Bitcoin system and published our results in a preprint on arXiv. (via...

Four short links: 15 July 2011 - Gender on Forms, Glitch Gets God, Predictably? Irrational Web Sites, and Successfully Open

By Nat Torkington
July 15, 2011

The Gender Question -- a clever solution to the vexed question of asking users for their gender. (via Luke Wroblewski) Katamari Damacy Creator Joins Glitch -- an amazing coup for Stewart Butterfield's new game. How Online Companies Get You to Spend More and Share More (Wired) -- Dan Ariely ("Predictably Irrational") tackles Amazon, Netflix, Groupon, etc. and shows how...

Four short links: 13 July 2011 - Freebase in Node, Form Styling, Implicit Friendships, and Dyslexic Font

By Nat Torkington
July 13, 2011

Freebase in Node.js (github) -- handy library for interacting with Freebase from node code. (via Rob McKinnon) Formalize -- CSS library to provide a standard style for form elements. (via Emma Jane Hogbin) Suggesting More Friends Using the Implicit Social Graph (PDF) -- Google paper on the algorithm behind Friend Suggest. Related: Katango. (via Big Data) Dyslexia -- a...

Four short links: 7 July 2011 - C64 Presales, Coding Lessons Learned, Feedback Loops, and Continuous Integration

By Nat Torkington
July 7, 2011

Commodore 64 PC -- gorgeous retro look with fairly zippy modern internals. (via Rob Passarella) Designing Github for Mac -- a retrospective from the author of the excellent Mac client for github. He talks about what he learned and its origins, design, and development. Remember web development in 2004? When you had to create pixel-perfect comps because every element...

Gamification has issues, but they aren't the ones everyone focuses on - Gamification expert Gabe Zichermann on three areas that deserve meaningful attention.

By Gabe Zichermann
June 15, 2011

Much of the criticism of gamification focuses on definitions and secondary concerns. Gamification expert Gabe Zichermann says attention should be paid to three different issues: over-justification, total cost of ownership, and addiction/compulsion.

Four short links: 10 June 2011 - CS Courses, Crowdsourced Sound Map, CSS Game, and Shared Social Intentions

By Nat Torkington
June 10, 2011

Advanced Computer Science Courses -- collection of online course notes/lectures for classes in advanced CS topics. (via Hacker News) UK SoundMap -- very cool crowdsourced audio landscape of the UK. (via British Library) CSS Panic -- game with no HTML, no Javascript, it's all CSS. Only works in Safari and Chrome. (via Dale Harvey) Sharing Intentions Talk -- interesting...

Four short links: 6 June 2011 - Paper App, Retro Net Simulation, Games Creator, Beginning Large-Scale Machine Learning

By Nat Torkington
June 6, 2011

Turning Receipts into Paper Apps (BERG London) -- I love the idea of the modern web app sensibility bleeding back into the world, the same way classic offline design has informed online. Telehack -- an amazing interactive reconstruction of the early net, part nostalgia part game part simulation. Check out the README for more details. (via Andy Baio) Stencyl...

Publishing News: Rebooting online news presentation - Ben Huh has a fling with news, checking in on the Twitter archive, and readers can now fund authors directly.

Publishing News: Rebooting online news presentation - Ben Huh has a fling with news, checking in on the Twitter archive, and readers can now fund authors directly.
By Jenn Webb
June 3, 2011

In the latest Publishing News: Ben Huh dishes on news organizations moving in the right direction; one year later, the Library of Congress' Twitter Archive is still being built; and the Unbound.co.uk publishing platform launched with some big-name authors.

10 innovative digital books you should know about - A look at 10 envelope-pushing digital books.

10 innovative digital books you should know about - A look at 10 envelope-pushing digital books.
By Peter Meyers
June 3, 2011

These days, Peter Meyers is knee-deep in digital books. Here he shares 10 of the best digital / interactive texts he's run across.

News organizations still party like it's 1899 - Ben Huh's new project focuses on news presentation. Here he talks about who's doing it well.

News organizations still party like it's 1899 - Ben Huh's new project focuses on news presentation. Here he talks about who's doing it well.
By Jenn Webb
May 31, 2011

Ben Huh, the CEO of Cheezburger, Inc., loves his Cheezburger project but is ready to engage in a fling with news. Huh's new Moby Dick project will address the limitations and frustrations of stagnant news presentation. In this short interview, Huh discusses news outlets that are headed in the right direction.

Creating a Successful eBook (PePcon 2011)

By Ron Bilodeau
May 24, 2011

After my presentation on "Creating a Successful eBook" at PePcon, I got lots of requests for the GREP expressions that I used to clean up my ePub files, so here they are

To the end of bloated code and broken websites - Nicole Sullivan on how CSS is evolving to meet performance and device needs.

By Jenn Webb
May 24, 2011

Velocity speaker and CSS expert Nicole Sullivan discusses the state of CSS — how it's adapting to mobile, how it's improving performance, and how some CSS best practices have led to "bloated code and broken websites."

What ebook designers can learn from Bible-reading software - A deep dive into the ebook innovations of Logos Bible Software and Glo Bible.

What ebook designers can learn from Bible-reading software - A deep dive into the ebook innovations of Logos Bible Software and Glo Bible.
By Peter Meyers
May 19, 2011

Pete Meyers has been kicking the tires on two reading systems — Logos Bible Software and Glo Bible — both of which are filled with reader-friendly ebook features.

Four short links: 13 May 2011 - Bogus Analysis x 2, API Classifications, and Expansive Text

By Nat Torkington
May 13, 2011

Mathematical Intimidation: Driven by the Data (PDF) -- excellent article from Notices of the American Mathematical Society about the flaws in "value-added modelling", the latest fad whereby data about students' results in different classes are analysed to identify the effect of each teacher. People recognize that tests are an imperfect measure of educational success, but when sophisticated mathematics is...

Four short links: 3 May 2011 - Sentiment Analysis, Word Frequency, Design Process, and Plant Recognition

By Nat Torkington
May 3, 2011

SentiWordNet -- WordNet with hints as to sentiment of particular terms, for use in sentiment analysis. (via Matt Biddulph) Word Frequency Lists and Dictionaries -- also for text analysis. This site contains what we believe is the most accurate frequency data of English. It contains word frequency lists of the top 60,000 words (lemmas) in English, collocates lists (looking...

Publishing News: Week in Review - U.S. News reinvents itself with data, the iPad isn't just a digital screen, and startups get a showcase.

Publishing News: Week in Review - U.S. News reinvents itself with data, the iPad isn't just a digital screen, and startups get a showcase.
By Jenn Webb
April 29, 2011

In the latest Publishing News: US News & World Report replaced national advertising with data-driven revenue streams, iPad magazine publishers are missing the boat, and publishing startups will soon have a new way to get attention.

The purpose of gamification - A look at gamification's applications and limitations.

The purpose of gamification - A look at gamification's applications and limitations.
By Gabe Zichermann
April 26, 2011

Gamification is inspiring debate and raising important questions: play vs. work, intrinsic vs. extrinsic motivation, authenticity vs. contrivance, just to name a few.

View the iPad as a magazine opportunity, not a container - Matthew Carlson on what iPad magazine publishers can do to better serve readers.

View the iPad as a magazine opportunity, not a container - Matthew Carlson on what iPad magazine publishers can do to better serve readers.
By Jenn Webb
April 25, 2011

Treating iPad magazines as if they were print leaves consumer interaction opportunities on the table. Matthew Carlson, principal of experience strategy and design at Hot Studio Inc., says it's time to set the content free.

The AWS Outage: The Cloud's Shining Moment

The AWS Outage: The Cloud's Shining Moment
By George Reese
April 23, 2011

So many cloud pundits are piling on to the misfortunes of Amazon Web Services this week as a response to the massive failures in the AWS Virginia region. If you think this week exposed weakness in the cloud, you don't get it: it was the cloud's shining moment, exposing the strength of cloud computing.

Utility attracts customers but fun creates evangelists - Stephan Anderson on how emotion feeds strong consumer relationships.

By Jenn Webb
April 18, 2011

Stephan Anderson says engaging consumers on an emotional level while still providing a dependable product is the way to create long-term customer loyalty.

Four short links: 7 April 2011 - Android Strategy, Fad Books, Ubiquitous Product Design, and Android Headers Apology

By Nat Torkington
April 7, 2011

The Freight Train That is Android -- Google’s aim is defensive not offensive. They are not trying to make a profit on Android or Chrome. They want to take any layer that lives between themselves and the consumer and make it free (or even less than free). [...] In essence, they are not just building a moat; Google is...

Ditch the jargon and back away from those tired slides - Nancy Duarte on the art of engaging an audience.

Ditch the jargon and back away from those tired slides - Nancy Duarte on the art of engaging an audience.
By Jenn Webb
April 4, 2011

Nancy Duarte, author of"slide:ology" and CEO of Duarte Design, says it's time to stop hiding behind business presentations. We need to connect on a human level.

Four short links: 25 March 2011 - Passionate Virtuosity, Developer Relations, Beautiful Wikipedia, and Paper Recommendations

By Nat Torkington
March 25, 2011

Bruce Sterling at SxSW (YouTube) -- call to arms for "passionate virtuosity". (via Mike Brown) Developer Support Handbook -- Pamela Fox's collected wisdom from years of doing devrel at Google. Wikipedia Beautifier -- Chrome plugin that makes Wikipedia easier on the eyes. science.io -- an open science community. Comment on, recommend and submit papers. Get up-to-date on a research...

UI is becoming an "embodied" model - Mobile, real-time, and physical make design tough and interesting.

By Jenn Webb
March 24, 2011

In the following interview, AOL director of consumer experience Christian Crumlish discusses the design opportunities that arise from new technologies and interfaces.

Open Question: How important is a mobile device's "feel"? - The limitations of mobile seem to put the focus on interaction, not tech specs.

Open Question: How important is a mobile device's
By Mac Slocum
March 23, 2011

Whether you buy into Apple's "post-PC" spin, the rise of mobile computing does seem to shift the perspective from raw tech specs to overall experience. How important is a mobile device's "feel" to you?


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