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Four short links: 12 March 2014

By Nat Torkington
March 12, 2014

High Volume Web Sites — Tim Berners-Lee answers my question on provisioning a popular web server in 1993. The server which has the Subject Catalogue gets probably a relatively high usage, about 10k requests a day, or (thinks…) one …

Four short links: 10 March 2014

By Nat Torkington
March 10, 2014

Wolfram Language — a broad attempt to integrate types, operations, and databases along with deployment, parallelism, and real-time I/O. The demo video is impressive, not just in execution but in ambition. Healthy skepticism still necessary. Maury, Innovation, and Change (Cory …

Four short links: 19 February 2014

By Nat Torkington
February 19, 2014

1746 Slippy Map of London — very nice use of Google Maps to recontextualise historic maps. (via USvTh3m) TPP Comic — the comic explaining TPP that you’ve been waiting for. (via BoingBoing) Synthetic Biology Investor’s Lament — some hypotheses about …

pushState to the Future: Progressive Enhancement Using HTML5 pushState at Twitter

By Peter Cooper
January 23, 2014

Fluent is O’Reilly’s conference dedicated to the Web Platform and all that entails, with a focus on JavaScript and HTML5. In 2013, over 1000 attendees and speakers like Brendan Eich, the creator of JavaScript and CTO of Mozilla, Paul Irish …

Four short links: 14 January 2014

By Nat Torkington
January 13, 2014

LayoutIt — drag-and-drop design using Bootstrap components. These tools are proliferating, as the standard design frameworks like Bootstrap make them possible. There’s unsustainable complexity in building web sites today, which means something will give: the web will lose to something, …

Four short links: Jan 1 2014

By Nat Torkington
January 1, 2014

Witrack — tracks the 3D motion of a user from the radio signals reflected off her body. It works even if the person is occluded from the WiTrack device or in a different room. WiTrack does not require the user …

Four short links: 29 November 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 29, 2013

Huaqiang Bei Map for Makers — excellent resource for visitors to an iconic huge electronics market in Shenzhen. (via Bunnie Huang) A 16th Century Dutchman Can Tell us Everything We Need to Know about GMO Patents — There’s nothing wrong …

Four short links: 27 November 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 27, 2013

CT Scanning and 3D Printing for Paleo (Scientific American) — using CT scanners to identify bones still in rock, then using 3D printers to recreate them. (via BoingBoing) Growing the Use of Drones in Agriculture (Forbes) — According to Sue …

Four short links: 26 November 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 26, 2013

The Death and Life of Great Internet Cities — “The sense that you were given some space on the Internet, and allowed to do anything you wanted to in that space, it’s completely gone from these new social sites,” said …

Four short links: 25 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 25, 2013

Seagate Kinetic Storage — In the words of Geoff Arnold: The physical interconnect to the disk drive is now Ethernet. The interface is a simple key-value object oriented access scheme, implemented using Google Protocol Buffers. It supports key-based CRUD (create, …

Four short links: 15 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 14, 2013

BF Skinner’s Baby Make Project (BoingBoing) — I got to read some of Skinner’s original writing on the Air-Crib recently and couple of things stuck out to me. First, it cracked me up. The article, published in 1959 in Cumulative …

Four short links: 22 August 2013

By Nat Torkington
August 20, 2013

bletchley (Google Code) — Bletchley is currently in the early stages of development and consists of tools which provide: Automated token encoding detection (36 encoding variants); Passive ciphertext block length and repetition analysis; Script generator for efficient automation of HTTP …

Four short links: 8 July 2013

By Nat Torkington
July 8, 2013

QCL: A Language for Quantum Computing — QCL is a high level, architecture independent programming language for quantum computers, with a syntax derived from classical procedural languages like C or Pascal. This allows for the complete implementation and simulation of …

Four short links: 4 July 2013

By Nat Torkington
July 4, 2013

ansible — Model-driven configuration management, multi-node deployment/orchestration, and remote task execution system. Uses SSH by default, so no special software has to be installed on the nodes you manage. Ansible can be extended in any language. The Golden Age of …

Four short links: 25 June 2013

By Nat Torkington
June 25, 2013

Cliodynamics: History as Science — a systematic application of the scientific method to history: verbal theories should be translated into mathematical models, precise predictions derived, and then rigorously tested on empirical material. In short, history needs to become an analytical, …

Four short links: 10 June 2013

By Nat Torkington
June 10, 2013

Anatomy of Two Memes — comparing the spread of Gangnam Style to Harlem Shake. Memes are like currencies: you need to balance accessibility (or ‘money supply’) and inflation. Gangnam Style became globally accessible through top-down mainstream sources (High Popularity), but …

Four short links: 8 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 8, 2013

How to Build a Working Digital Computer Out of Paperclips (Evil Mad Scientist) — from a 1967 popular science book showing how to build everything from parts that you might find at a hardware store: items like paper clips, little …

Four short links: 6 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 6, 2013

Nautilus — elegantly-designed science web ‘zine. Includes Artificial Emotions on AI, neuro, and psych efforts to recognise and simulate emotions. A Short Essay on 3D Printing — This hands-off approach to culpability cannot last long. If you design something to …

Four short links: 25 April 2013

By Nat Torkington
April 24, 2013

Alcatraz — package manager for iOS. (via Hacker News) Scarfolk Council — clever satire, the concept being a UK town stuck in 1979. Tupperware urns, “put old people down at birth”. The 1979 look is gorgeous. (via BoingBoing) Stop Designing …

If you’ve ever wondered where those O’Reilly animal covers come from …

By Mac Slocum
April 2, 2013

The exchange often goes like this: Stranger: “Where do you work?” Me: “O’Reilly Media.” Stranger: “O’Reilly …” [Long pause while he or she works through the various "O'Reilly" outlets — the TV guy, the auto parts company.] Me: “You know …

Four short links: 20 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 20, 2013

Digital Music Consumption on the Internet: Evidence from Clickstream Data (Scribd) — The goal of this paper is to analyze the behavior of digital music consumers on the Internet. Using clickstream data on a panel of more than 16,000 European …

Four short links: February 21 2013

By Nat Torkington
February 21, 2013

Administration Strategy on Mitigating the Theft of US Trade Secrets (Whitehouse, PDF) — the Chinese attacks on Facebook, NYT, and other large organisations are provoking policy responses. WSJ covers it nicely. What is this starting? (via Alex Howard) BodyMedia FitLink …

Four short links: 15 February 2013

By Nat Torkington
February 15, 2013

Ed Startups in a Nutshell (Dan Meyer) — I couldn’t agree with Dan more: The Internet is like a round pipe. Lecture videos and machine-scored exercises are like round pegs. They pass easily from one end of the pipe to …

Four short links: 9 January 2013

By Nat Torkington
January 9, 2013

BitCoin in 2012, By The Numbers — Over the past year Bitcoin’s value when compared to the US Dollar, and most other currencies, increased steadily, though there was a large spike and subsequent dip in August. Interestingly, the current market …

Four short links: 8 January 2013

By Nat Torkington
January 8, 2013

13 Design Trends for 2013 — many of these coalesced what I’ve seen in websites recently, but I was particularly intrigued by the observation that search’s growing importance to apps is being reflected in larger searchboxes. How Twitter Gets In …

Four short links: 3 January 2013

By Nat Torkington
January 3, 2013

Community Memory (Wired) — In the early 1970s, Efrem Lipkin, Mark Szpakowski and Lee Felsenstein set up a series of these terminals around San Francisco and Berkeley, providing access to an electronic bulletin board housed by a XDS-940 mainframe computer. …

Four short links: 18 December 2012

By Nat Torkington
December 18, 2012

Credibility Ranking of Tweets During High Impact Events (PDF) — interesting research. Situational awareness information is information that leads to gain in the knowledge or update about details of the event, like the location, people aff ected, causes, etc. We found …

Four short links: 14 December 2012

By Nat Torkington
December 14, 2012

Which Science to Fund: Time to Review Peer Review? (Peter Gluckman) — The study concluded that most funding decisions are a result of random effects dominated by factors such as who was the lead reviewer. In general the referee and …

Four short links: 13 December 2012

By Nat Torkington
December 13, 2012

Top 10 Chinese Internet Memes of 2012 — most are political, unlike Overly Attached Girlfriend. Evaporative Cooling — thoughtful piece about the tendency of event quality to trend down unless checked by invisible walls. (via Hacker News) What Was It …

Serial fiction: Everything old is new again

By Alice Armitage
December 10, 2012

2012 may be remembered as the year that digital publishing brought serial fiction back to the reading public. Readers in the 19th and early 20th centuries often read fictional stories in installments in newspapers and magazines: books were simply too …

Four short links: 4 December 2012

By Nat Torkington
December 4, 2012

James Burke at dConstruct — transcription of his talk. EPIC. I love this man and could listen to him all day long. (via Keith Bolland) Mechanism Design on Trust Networks (CiteSeerX) — academic paper behind the Ripple Bitcoin-esque open source …

Four short links: 30 November 2012

By Nat Torkington
November 30, 2012

Kids Use Minecraft to Design School — “Students have been massively enthusiastic, with many turning up early to school to work on their Minecraft designs and they continue to do so at home too.” Also see the school’s blog. Napster, …

Four short links: 15 November 2012

By Nat Torkington
November 15, 2012

Atkinson Dithering in Real Time — a Processing app that renders what the video camera sees, as though it were an original Mac black and white image. Patching Binaries — a patch for a crashing bug during import of account …

Four short links: 4 October 2012

By Nat Torkington
October 4, 2012

As We May Think (Vannevar Bush) — incredibly prescient piece he wrote for The Atlantic in 1945. Transparency and Topic Models (YouTube) — a talk from DataGotham 2012, by Hanna Wallach. She uses latent Dirichlet allocation topic models to mine …

Four short links: 19 September 2012

By Nat Torkington
September 17, 2012

/r/Scholar — Reddit board for tracking down research articles of interest. sweet.js (GitHub) — macros for Javascript. (via Brendan Eich) The Rapture of the Nerds (Charlie Stoss, Cory Doctorow) — this is the HTML version of the book, which is …

Four short links: 7 September 2012

By Nat Torkington
September 7, 2012

GS-Collections (GitHub) — Goldman Sachs open-sourced (Apache-licensed) their Java collection library, full of lambda goodness. No report on whether it requires a 750G bailout. Learning ZIL — old manual for the interactive fiction programming language that Zork and other Infocom …

Four short links: 30 August 2012

By Nat Torkington
August 30, 2012

TOS;DR — terms of service rendered comprehensible. “Make the hard stuff easy” is a great template for good ideas, and this just nails it. Sick of Impact Factors — typically only 15% of the papers in a journal account for …

Four short links: 29 August 2012

By Nat Torkington
August 28, 2012

NeoVictorian Computing (Mark Bernstein) — read this! I think we all woke up one day to find ourselves living in the software factory. The floor is hard, from time to time it gets very cold at night, and they say …

Four short links: 9 August 2012

By Nat Torkington
August 9, 2012

Doing Capitalism in the Innovation Economy (Amazon) — soon-to-be-released book by Bill Janeway, of Warburg-Pincus (and the O’Reilly board). People raved about his session at scifoo. I’m bummed I missed it, but I’ll console myself with his book. Cell Image …

Four short links: 18 July 2012

By Nat Torkington
July 18, 2012

A Brief History of Money (IEEE) — money is fragmenting, moving from a shared delusion to a just-in-time collusion. Understand its past to understand its future. The Lydian system’s breakthrough was the standardized metal coin. Made of a gold-silver alloy …

The emerging political force of the network of networks

By Alex Howard
June 22, 2012

The ninth Personal Democracy Forum explored the nexus of technology, politics and campaigns. What's happening online matters offline. Indeed, the barrier between the virtual and physical worlds has fallen.

Four short links: 20 June 2012

By Nat Torkington
June 20, 2012

Researcher Chats To Hacker Who Created The Virus He's Researching -- Chicken: I didn’t know you can see my screen. Hacker: I would like to see your face, but what a pity you don’t have a camera. Economist on QR Codes -- Three-quarters of American online retailers surveyed by Forrester, a research firm, use them. In April nearly 20%...

Four short links: 28 May 2012

By Nat Torkington
May 28, 2012

Canada Wages War on Knowledge -- Library and Archives Canada is ending acquisitions, not digitizing material, dispersing its collection to underfunded private and public collections around Canada, and providing little in the way of access to the scraps they did keep. Apparently Canada has been overrun by Huns and Vandals. Imminent sack of Toronto predicted. (via BoingBoing) Cyberpunk Dress...

Visualization of the Week: Avengers Assemble

By Audrey Watters
May 11, 2012

In this week's visualization, The New York Times' data artist Jer Thorp visualizes the appearances of "The Avengers" in the comic book series.

Visualization of the Week: Avengers Assemble

Visualization of the Week: Avengers Assemble
By Audrey Watters
May 11, 2012

In this week's visualization, The New York Times' data artist Jer Thorp visualizes the appearances of "The Avengers" in the comic book series.

Four short links: 10 May 2012

By Nat Torkington
May 10, 2012

Gravity in the Margins (Got Medieval) -- illuminating illuminated manuscripts with Mario. (via BoingBoing) Hours Days, Who's Counting? (Jon Udell) -- What prompted me to check? My friend Mike Caulfield, who’s been teaching and writing about quantitative literacy, says it’s because in this case I did have some touchstone facts parked in my head, including the number 10 million...

Four short links: 8 May 2012

By Nat Torkington
May 8, 2012

Gmail Vault -- app to backup and restore the contents of your gmail account. (via Hacker News) Leaving Apps for HTML5 (Technology Review) -- We sold 353 subscriptions through the iPad. We never discovered how to avoid the necessity of designing both landscape and portrait versions of the magazine for the app. We wasted $124,000 on outsourced software development....

Four short links: 3 May 2012

By Nat Torkington
May 3, 2012

The History of Key Design (Slate) -- fascinating and educational. I loved the detector lock, which shows you how many times it has been used. Would be lovely to see on my Google account. (via Dave Pell) Why Telcos Don't Grok Open Standards (Simon Phipps) -- Their history is of participants in a market where a legally-constituted cartel of...

Four short links: 26 April 2012

By Nat Torkington
April 26, 2012

Apollo Software -- amazing collection of source code to the software behind the Apollo mission. And memos, and quick references, and operations plans, and .... Just another reminder that the software itself is generally dwarfed by its operation. flickrapi.js (Github) -- Aaron Straup Cope's Javascript library for Flickr. t (Github) -- command-line power-tool for Twitter. Habits of Mind (PDF)...

Four short links: 26 March 2012

By Nat Torkington
March 26, 2012

Australian NSA Forces National Broadband Network to Dump Huawei -- Australia's government security organization knocked Huawei out of the eligible bidding list. "It's the exact area where we have been the sole supplier in the United Kingdom for the past six years," Huawei's director of corporate and ­public affairs, Jeremy Mitchell, told the Financial Review. Governments ask themselves how...

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