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Four short links: 4 March 2014

By Nat Torkington
March 4, 2014

It’s Complicated — Danah Boyd’s new book on teens use of the online world is available for PDF download (but buy a copy anyway!). Building a Solid World — O’Reilly research paper about the “software-enhanced networked physical world”. Gonna be …

Four short links: 24 February 2014

By Nat Torkington
February 24, 2014

Understanding Understanding Source Code with Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (PDF) — we observed 17 participants inside an fMRI scanner while they were comprehending short source-code snippets, which we contrasted with locating syntax error. We found a clear, distinct activation pattern …

Four short links: 21 February 2014

By Nat Torkington
February 21, 2014

Mapping Twitter Topic Networks (Pew Internet) — Conversations on Twitter create networks with identifiable contours as people reply to and mention one another in their tweets. These conversational structures differ, depending on the subject and the people driving the conversation. …

Four short links: 17 February 2014

By Nat Torkington
February 17, 2014

imsg — use iMessage from the commandline. Facebook Data Science Team Posts About Love — I tell people, “this is what you look like to SkyNet.” A System for Detecting Software Plagiarism — the research behind the undergraduate bete noir. …

Four short links: 5 February 2014

By Nat Torkington
February 5, 2014

sigma.js — Javascript graph-drawing library (node-edge graphs, not charts). DARPA Open Catalog — all the open source published by DARPA. Sweet! Quantified Vehicle Meetup — Boston meetup around intelligent automotive tech including on-board diagnostics, protocols, APIs, analytics, telematics, apps, software …

Freud and Ford; listening and uderstanding

By Emerson Niide
January 22, 2014

In research, what really matters is not what people tell you -- but what is behind it

Four short links: 17 January 2014

By Nat Torkington
January 17, 2014

Making Remote Work — The real­ity of a remote work­place is that the con­nec­tions are largely arti­fi­cial con­structs. Peo­ple can be very, very iso­lated. A person’s default behav­ior when they go into a funk is to avoid seek­ing out inter­ac­tions, …

Four short links: 9 January 2014

By Nat Torkington
January 9, 2014

Artificial Labour and Ubiquitous Interactive Machine Learning (Greg Borenstein) — in which design fiction, actual machine learning, legal discovery, and comics meet. One of the major themes to emerge in the 2H2K project is something we’ve taken to calling “artificial …

Four short links: 8 January 2014

By Nat Torkington
January 8, 2014

Launching the Wolfram Connected Devices Project — Wolfram Alpha is cognition-as-a-service, which they hope to embed in devices. This data-powered Brain-in-the-Cloud play will pit them against Google, but G wants to own the devices and the apps and the eyeballs …

Security firms must retool as clients move to the cloud

By Andy Oram
January 6, 2014

This should be flush times for firms selling security solutions, such as Symantec, McAfee, Trend Micro, and RSA. Front-page news about cyber attacks provides free advertising, and security capabilities swell with new techniques such as security analysis (permit me a …

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: 26 December 2013

By Nat Torkington
December 26, 2013

Nest Protect Teardown (Sparkfun) — initial teardown of another piece of domestic industrial Internet. Logs — The distributed log can be seen as the data structure which models the problem of consensus. Not kidding when he calls it “real-time data’s …

Four short links: 16 December 2013

By Nat Torkington
December 16, 2013

Suro (Github) — Netflix data pipeline service for large volumes of event data. (via Ben Lorica) NIPS Workshop on Data Driven Education — lots of research papers around machine learning, MOOC data, etc. Proofist — crowdsourced proofreading game. 3D-Printed Shoes …

Four short links: 3 December 2013

By Nat Torkington
December 3, 2013

SAMOA — Yahoo!’s distributed streaming machine learning (ML) framework that contains a programming abstraction for distributed streaming ML algorithms. (via Introducing SAMOA) madlib — an open-source library for scalable in-database analytics. It provides data-parallel implementations of mathematical, statistical and machine-learning …

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: 13 November 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 12, 2013

ISS Enjoys Malware — Kaspersky reveals ISS had XP malware infestation before they shifted to Linux. The Gravity movie would have had more registry editing sessions if the producers had cared about FACTUAL ACCURACY. Big Data Approach to Computational Creativity …

Four short links: 12 Nov 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 11, 2013

Quantitative Reliability of Programs That Execute on Unreliable Hardware (MIT) — As MIT’s press release put it: Rely simply steps through the intermediate representation, folding the probability that each instruction will yield the right answer into an estimation of the …

Four short links: 8 November 2013

By Nat Torkington
November 8, 2013

An Empirical Study of Cryptographic Misuse in Android Applications (PDF) — We develop program analysis techniques to automatically check programs on the Google Play marketplace, and find that 10,327 out of 11,748 applications that use cryptographic APIs (88% overall) make …

Four short links: 24 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 24, 2013

Visually Programming Arduino — good for little minds. Rapid Hardware Iteration at Scale (Forbes) — It’s part of the unique way that Xiaomi operates, closely analyzing the user feedback it gets on its smartphones and following the suggestions it likes …

Four short links: 18 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 18, 2013

Science Not as Self-Correcting As It Thinks (Economist) — REALLY good discussion of the shortcomings in statistical practice by scientists, peer-review failures, and the complexities of experimental procedure and fuzziness of what reproducibility might actually mean. Reproducibility Initiative Receives Grant …

Four short links: 14 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 14, 2013

An Interactive Machine Learning System for Recognizing Hand Gestures (Greg Borenstein) — a mixed-initiative interactive machine learning system for recognizing hand gestures. It attempts to give the user visibility into the classifier’s prediction confidence and control of the conditions under …

Podcast: expanding our experience of interfaces and interaction

By Jenn Webb
October 7, 2013

At our Sci Foo Camp this past summer, Jon Bruner, Jim Stogdill, Roger Magoulas, and I were joined by guests Amanda Parkes, a professor in the Department of Architecture at Columbia University, and CTO at algae biofuels company Bodega Algae …

Four short links: 4 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 4, 2013

Case and Molly, a Game Inspired by Neuromancer (Greg Borenstein) — On reading Neuromancer today, this dynamic feels all too familiar. We constantly navigate the tension between the physical and the digital in a state of continuous partial attention. We …

Four short links: 2 October 2013

By Nat Torkington
October 2, 2013

Instant Translator Glasses (ZDNet) — character recognition to do instant translating, and a UI that turns any flat surface into a touch-screen via a finger-ring sensor. draw.io — diagramming … In The Cloud! Airmail — Mac gmail client with offline …

Four short links: 30 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 24, 2013

Steve Yegge on GROK (YouTube) — The Grok Project is an internal Google initiative to simplify the navigation and querying of very large program source repositories. We have designed and implemented a language-neutral, canonical representation for source code and compiler …

Four short links: 26 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 24, 2013

Google Has Spent 21 Billion on Data Centers — The company invested a record $1.6 billion in its data centers in the second quarter of 2013. Puts my impulse-purchased second external hard-drive into context, doesn’t it honey? 10x Engineer (Shanley) …

Four short links: 17 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 17, 2013

Quark — a web browser with a formally-proven kernel. High-Assurance Base64 — formally verified C implementation of Base64. z3 — fast theorem prover from Microsoft Research. libphenom (GitHub) — Facebook’s open sourced eventing framework. (High-scalability, natch)

Four short links: 13 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 13, 2013

Fog Creek’s Remote Work Policy — In the absence of new information, the assumption is that you’re producing. When you step outside the HQ work environment, you should flip that burden of proof. The burden is on you to show …

Four short links: 9 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 8, 2013

How Google’s Defragging Android (Ars Technica) — Android’s becoming a pudgy microkernel for the Google Play Services layer that’s in userland, closed source, and a way to bypass carriers’ lag for upgrades. Booting a Self-Signed Linux Kernel (Greg Kroah-Hartman) — …

Four short links: 3 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 2, 2013

Achieving Rapid Response Times in Large Online Services (PDF) — slides from a talk by Jeff Dean on fanout architectures. (via Alex Dong) JS MESS — porting the stunning MESS ultimate emulator to Javascript. Interesting challenges like Chrome currently has …

Four short links: 30 August 2013

By Nat Torkington
August 29, 2013

intention.js — manipulates the DOM via HTML attributes. The methods for manipulation are placed with the elements themselves, so flexible layouts don’t seem so abstract and messy. Introducing Brick: Minimal-markup Web Components for Faster App Development (Mozilla) — a cross-browser …

Four short links: 8 August 2013

By Nat Torkington
August 8, 2013

Reducing the Roots of Some Evil (Etsy) — Based on our first two months of data we have removed a number of unused CA certificates from some pilot systems to test the effects, and will run CAWatch for a full …

Four short links: 9 July 2013

By Nat Torkington
July 9, 2013

Autonomous Intersection Management Project — a scalable, safe, and efficient multiagent framework for managing autonomous vehicles at intersections. (via How Driverless Cars Could Reshape Cities) Quantum Information (New Scientist) — a gentle romp through the possible and the actual for …

Four short links: 28 June 2013

By Nat Torkington
June 28, 2013

Huxley vs Orwell — buy Amusing Ourselves to Death if this rings true. The future is here, it’s just not evenly surveilled. (via rone) KeyMe — keys in the cloud. (Digital designs as backups for physical objects) Motorola Advanced Technology …

Four short links: 24 June 2013

By Nat Torkington
June 24, 2013

Reading Runes in Animal Movement (YouTube) — accessible TEDxRiverTawe 2013 talk by Professor Rory Wilson, on his work tracking movements of animals in time and space. The value comes from high-resolution time series data: many samples/second, very granular. Best Science …

Four short links: 31 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 31, 2013

Modeling Users’ Activity on Twitter Networks: Validation of Dunbar’s Number (PLoSone) — In this paper we analyze a dataset of Twitter conversations collected across six months involving 1.7 million individuals and test the theoretical cognitive limit on the number of …

Four short links: 16 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 16, 2013

Australian Filter Scope Creep — The Federal Government has confirmed its financial regulator has started requiring Australian Internet service providers to block websites suspected of providing fraudulent financial opportunities, in a move which appears to also open the door for …

Four short links: 13 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 13, 2013

Exploiting a Bug in Google Glass — unbelievably detailed and yet easy-to-follow explanation of how the bug works, how the author found it, and how you can exploit it too. The second guide was slightly more technical, so when he …

Four short links: 3 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
May 3, 2013

Causal Entropic Forces (PDF) — new paper from Sci Foo alum Alex Wissner-Gross connecting intelligence and entropy. (via Inside Science) Nyan Cat and Keyboard Cat Are Trademarked Memes (Ars Technica) — the business of this (presumably there will be royalties …

A Day at the 2013 Genomes, Environments and Traits Conference

By James Turner
April 26, 2013

The GET (Genomes, Environments and Traits) conference is a confluence of parties interested in the advances being made in human genomes, the measurement of how the environment impacts individuals, and how the two come together to produce traits.  Sponsored by …

Four short links: 2 May 2013

By Nat Torkington
April 24, 2013

Metrico — puzzle game for Playstation centered around infographics (charts and graphs). (via Flowing Data) The Lease They Can Do (Business Week) — excellent Paul Ford piece on money, law, and music streaming services. So this is not about technology. …

Four short links: 26 April 2013

By Nat Torkington
April 24, 2013

The Engagement Cliff — Gallup surveyed nearly 500,000 students in grades five through 12 from more than 1,700 public schools in 37 states in 2012 and found that by the time students get to high school only about 4 in …

Four short links: 5 April 2013

By Nat Torkington
April 5, 2013

Millimetre-Accuracy 3D Imaging From 1km Away (The Register) — With further development, Heriot-Watt University Research Fellow Aongus McCarthy says, the system could end up both portable and with a range of up to 10 Km. See the paper for the …

Four short links: 29 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 29, 2013

Titan 0.3 Out — graph database now has full-text, geo, and numeric-range index backends. Mozilla Security Community Do a Reddit AMA — if you wanted a list of sharp web security people to follow on Twitter, you could do a …

Four short links: 27 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 27, 2013

The Effect of Group Attachment and Social Position on Prosocial Behavior (PLoSone) — notable, in my mind, for We conducted lab-in-the-field experiments involving 2,597 members of producer organizations in rural Uganda. cf the recently reported “rich are more selfish than …

Four short links: 26 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 26, 2013

Patent on Medical Trial Design to Reduce Placebo Effect — drug companies say these failures are happening not because their drugs are ineffective, but because placebos have recently become more effective in clinical trials. [...] The whole idea that placebo …

Four short links: 15 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 15, 2013

Consumer Heterogeneity and Paid Search Effectiveness: A Large Scale Field Experiment (PDF) — We find that new and infrequent users are positively influenced by ads but that existing loyal users whose purchasing behavior is not influenced by paid search account …

Four short links: 7 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 7, 2013

Pharmacovigilance — Signals from The Crowd (PDF) — in the NY Times’ words: Using automated software tools to examine queries by 6 million Internet users taken from Web search logs in 2010, the researchers looked for searches relating to an …

Untangling algorithmic illusions from reality in big data

By Alex Howard
March 6, 2013

Microsoft principal researcher Kate Crawford (@katecrawford) gave a strong talk at last week’s Strata Conference in Santa Clara, Calif. about the limits of big data. She pointed out potential biases in data collection, questioned who may be excluded from it, …

Four short links: 5 March 2013

By Nat Torkington
March 5, 2013

Eulerian Video Magnification — papers and the MatLab source code for that amazing effect of exaggerating small changes in file. (*This work is patent pending) CopyrightX — MOOC on current law of copyright and the ongoing debates concerning how that …


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