8466
Time to get a life -- pioneer blogger Justin Hall bows out at 31 - SFGate
William Gibson, author of "Pattern Recognition" and "Neuromancer," announced he would stop blogging in May 2003, telling Wired magazine that "I do know from doing it that it's not something I can do when I'm actually working. Somehow the ecology of writing novels wouldn't be able to exist if I'm in daily contact." Although he didn't actually stop until September 2003, he waited a year, and then began posting again in October 2004.
2 hours ago
Amazon's Company Town? - Nicole Brodeur - POLITICO Magazine
. “They always travel in groups of five, these programmers. There’s always a tall, skinny white guy; short skinny Asian guy; fat guy with a ponytail; some guy with crazy facial hair and then, an East Indian guy. It’s like they trade guys until they all have the right group.”
12 hours ago
How One Boy With Autism Became B.F.F.'s With Apple’s Siri - NYTimes.com
Gus had never noticed Siri before, but when he discovered there was someone who would not just find information on his various obsessions (trains, planes, buses, escalators and, of course, anything related to weather) but actually semi-discuss these subjects tirelessly, he was hooked. And I was grateful. Now, when my head was about to explode if I had to have another conversation about the chance of tornadoes in Kansas City, Mo., I could reply brightly: “Hey! Why don’t you ask Siri?”

It’s not that Gus doesn’t understand Siri’s not human. He does — intellectually. But like many autistic people I know, Gus feels that inanimate objects, while maybe not possessing souls, are worthy of our consideration. I realized this when he was 8, and I got him an iPod for his birthday. He listened to it only at home, with one exception. It always came with us on our visits to the Apple Store. Finally, I asked why. “So it can visit its friends,” he said...For children like Gus who love to chatter but don’t quite understand the rules of the game, Siri is a nonjudgmental friend and teacher.
autism  disabled  affective-computing  artificial-intelligence 
15 hours ago
GetUpp uses peer pressure and shame to keep you motivated - The Next Web
GetUpp that aims to help you honour your commitments.

Let’s say that you want an extra nudge to make sure that you go to the gym after work. You use the Web app or iPhone app to specify a trip to the gym, mark the its location on a map and state the time you plan to be there. You can announce your plan on Facebook and can even let your friends vote for whether they think you’ll achieve your goal.
fucked-apps 
16 hours ago
The Time Traveler Convention - May 7, 2005
"A student at MIT is hosting a Time Traveler Party this week with the hope that people from the future will show up...too bad people from the future already know the party sucked!" Note the scorn dripping from the word "future."
THIS JUST IN!:
time  funny  mit 
2 days ago
Prejudice Revealed In Cop Who Killed Darrien Hunt | Hip-Hop Wired
Corporal Matthew Schauerhamer, one of the two officers involved in the shooting, had an article published in the local Crossroads Journal, that was to serve as guide on how to spot drug use in children. Midway through his essay, he starts alleging that musical artists, including Bob Marley and various rappers share a gateway with getting kids in the habit of substance abuse.
police  Darrien-Hunt 
2 days ago
Darrien Hunt family uncover sketches that suggest link to cosplay theory | US news | theguardian.com
Family and friends have struggled to explain why Hunt wandered around the neighbourhood with the two-to-three-foot metal sword, which they say was bought from a gift shop and did not have a sharp edge. Police say that it had a sharpened point and appeared to have a dangerous blade.

Attention was swiftly drawn online to Hunt’s remarkable resemblance as he walked around on the morning of 10 September to Mugen, a swordsman character in the short-lived Japanese anime series Samurai Champloo. The Comic Con convention had also taken place in Salt Lake City, about 35 miles to the north, the weekend before the shooting.

Hunt’s aunt, Cindy Moss, previously told the Guardian that a witness to the confrontation with police had told the family that Hunt “had his earbuds in, and was kind of doing spins and stuff, like pretending he’s a samurai”.
racism  cosplay  police 
2 days ago
“Raving Amazons”: Antiblackness and Misogynoir in Social Media by I’Nasah Crockett | Model View Culture
What we uncovered was an extended year-long plan, where 4chan users were to set up fake accounts where they would pretend to be Black women, women of color, trans women, and otherwise marginalized folks, infiltrate our spaces, study how we operate, then wage hashtag war.
2 days ago
Revealed: how Whisper app tracks ‘anonymous’ users | World news | The Guardian
Whisper is also sharing information with the US Department of Defense gleaned from smartphones it knows are used from military bases, and developing a version of its app to conform with Chinese censorship laws...In July, during the recent Israeli war in Gaza, Whisper was able to monitor Israeli Defense Force soldiers on the frontline. “We had 13 or 14 soldiers who we were tracking – every whisper they did,” one Whisper executive said during the Guardian’s visit.
3 days ago
Unequal Time: A new book looks at work-life balance for health care workers.
the EMTs’ relationships with their wives were much, much more egalitarian than the doctors’ relationships with their wives. Ninety percent of the married EMTs had wives who also worked full-time. As Clawson and Gerstel note, “The EMTs talked of picking children up from school, feeding them dinner, or staying home with them when they got sick. The EMTs saw this work as their responsibility—shared with their wives.”
4 days ago
Jennifer Jacquet | Edge.org
She works at the intersection of conservation, cooperation, and technology, with an emphasis on the evolution, function, and future of shame. 

Her areas of research/interest include marine ecology; conservation & evolutionary biology; cooperation; social approval; the evolution and function of guilt, honor, and shame, and the role of information technology in shaping environmental action—which fall under a broad interest in the tragedy of the commons.

With colleagues from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology and UBC's Math Department, she has conducted a series of experiments to study the effect of honor and shame on cooperation. She formerly wrote the Guilty Planet blog at Scientific American.
4 days ago
...........//: On Right-Wing Videogame Extremism
the full storify of his tweets is here. the most striking thing to me, beyond the bizarre level of arbitrary detail their relationship is documented in Gjoni's post (e.g. "I had my first panic attack Apr. 29th"), is that he uses the language of games and rules sets to intensely analyze the potential outcomes of situations he felt he was put in in their relationship. as John Brindle observed, the talk of puzzle pieces and investigation seem like some perverted version of the protagonist in the popular game Braid. they also recall the kind of universal strategies and "truths" about the opposite sex developed and disseminated by pick-up artists, but in a way they originate in game language - and game culture, in how games disembody and dehumanize subjects. 
4 days ago
The Future Of The Culture Wars Is Here, And It's Gamergate
The story continued in this vein—cautious, assiduously neutral, lobotomized, never questioning the premises of the Gamergate "firestorm" and "debate." Both sides were heard. And thus did Leigh Alexander's commentary on the pluralism of gaming today get equal time with a campaign bent on silencing her.

And that's how it works. It's a neat trick. Agitate bare-facedly for the absolute necessity of developers investing the vast majority of their resources in games pitched at the intellectual and emotional level of a 16-year-old suburban masturbator, and no one beyond the gaming world is going to take you very seriously. But make it a story about an oppressive and hypocritical media conspiracy, and all of a sudden you have a cause, a side in a "debate."
gamergate 
4 days ago
What Would Keep Ebola from Spreading in the US? Investing in Simple Research Years Ago. | WIRED
Infection prevention is a science of tiny details, all of them granular, almost none of them interesting to anyone outside the field. Granular means not just figuring out which protective equipment workers should wear in which situation — not as obvious as you would think, because the more you load them with gear, the more tired and distracted they become — but also determining the best ways to keep up their expertise in putting the equipment on and taking it off. It means designing room sinks so that bacteria don’t splash back out of the drain, and figuring out where to put shelves so nurses aren’t distracted on the way to the sink to wash their hands, and whether to focus on handwashing at all, or just encourage glove-wearing all the time.
health  medicine 
6 days ago
These Are the Emails Snowden Sent to First Introduce His Epic NSA Leaks | WIRED
From now, know that every border you cross, every purchase you make, every call you dial, every cell phone tower you pass, friend you keep, article you write, site you visit, subject line you type, and packet you route, is in the hands of a system whose reach is unlimited but whose safeguards are not. Your victimization by the NSA system means that you are well aware of the threat that unrestricted, secret abilities pose for democracies. This is a story that few but you can tell.
6 days ago
Nature, Pixelated - Issue 17: Big Bangs - Nautilus BY DIANE ACKERMAN
Long ago, the human tribe met to share food, expertise, ideas, and feelings. The keen-eyed observations they exchanged about the weather, landscape, and animals saved lives on a daily basis. Now there are so many of us that it’s not convenient to sit around a campfire. Electronic campfires are the next best thing. We’ve reimagined space, turning the Internet into a favorite pub, a common meeting place where we can exchange knowledge or know-how or even meet a future mate. The sharing of information is fast, unfiltered, and sloppy. Our nervous systems are living in a stream of such data, influenced not just by the environment—as was the case for millennia—but abstractly, virtually. How has this changed our notion of reality? Without our brain we’re not real, but when our brain is plugged into a virtual world, then that becomes real. The body remains in physical space, while the brain travels in a virtual space that is both nowhere and everywhere at once.
6 days ago
Laurie Penny's 'Unspeakable Things' - NYTimes.com
Penny also rubs against the usual identity-politics-based tension when presenting the personal as political and the particular as universal. Her efforts to forge a sense of kinship with the reader may inadvertently lead to alienation.

Take the word “slut.” In 2011, a Toronto cop told college women they could avoid being sexually assaulted if they didn’t dress “like sluts.” Outraged, provocatively dressed protesters of all genders took to the streets in 70 cities around the world. While Penny reports positively on the trend, and attempts to reclaim “slut” (“It’s a word of power; I’m taking it back”), she misses a larger, more complicated dynamic at play. The writer Brittney Cooper described some black women’s reluctance to participate in the marches: “It’s hard to not feel a bit incensed at the ‘how-dare-you quality’ of the SlutWalk protests, which feel very much like the protests of privileged white girls who still have an expectation that the world will treat them with dignity and respect.” While women of color around the world engaged with SlutWalk on their own terms, Penny glosses over criticisms in her quest to present a unified movement.
7 days ago
Laura Poitras’s Closeup View of Edward Snowden
“Scroll down, scroll down. I think you just take this out altogether. The whole thing. It’s too identifying. I think, given the risk, we should be careful. What I have the clearance to do is focus on the drone strikes and the watch list.” The watch list is the U.S. government’s long roster of known terrorists and other people deemed to pose a serious national-security risk...he wrote a letter to Poitras and Greenwald that said, in part, “While I pray that public awareness and debate will lead to reform, bear in mind that the policies of men change in time, and even the Constitution is subverted when the appetites of power demand it. In words from history: Let us speak no more of faith in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of cryptography.”
8 days ago
Contents of Time Capsule, Long Forgotten, Are Less Than Memorable - NYTimes.com
“disappointment is the most common response to time capsule openings.”
10 days ago
The complicity cost of racial inclusion | Al Jazeera America
It may be disconcerting for some people to recognize that the boundaries of whiteness can shift. The ubiquitous boxes we check on applications and census materials might lead us to believe that race is determinate. But race is a social construct, not a scientific fact: American whiteness was an ideological creation to rationalize the enslavement of Africans and the extermination of native peoples. As David Roediger argued in “The Wages of Whiteness,” racial antagonisms helped solidify 19th century American class structure
10 days ago
Narcissists: Sexists, Racists, Child Abusers, Saboteurs, Internet Trolls | yesivebeenthere2
Unless you’ve had this kind of experience, you (very reasonably!) expect people to behave in coherent ways:

If a person claims that x is true, you either expect that it is true, or they have a clear & comprehensible motive for lying.
abuse 
11 days ago
'I am a predator' - ruin follows him everywhere - SFGate
He wasn't royalty in his native Nepal, as he once claimed, nor was he an estate lawyer or a luxury condominium buyer. Considering he is gay, it appears he did not fall in love with the Japanese tourist to whom he became engaged - while allegedly relieving her of half a million dollars.

With wonder and horror, authorities and associates are recounting a singular crime spree in which, they say, a dogged con man exploited others' goodwill or greed.
cons 
12 days ago
Tax Court Ruling Is Seen as a Victory for Artists - NYTimes.com
During a trial before the tax court last year, Ms. Crile, whose work has focused on subjects like the Persian Gulf war of 1991 and the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison, described a dogged career of more than 40 years that has been more successful critically than financially. From 1971 through 2013, court papers said, she earned $667,902 from the sale of 356 works of art — or an average income of a little less than $16,000 per year — and, like many artists, she wrote off expenses from her work, like supplies, travel and meals, on her taxes. Only three years of her art career have been profitable, court records showed, and her reliable income came from teaching at Hunter, where she began part time in 1983 and became a tenured professor in 1994.
art  money  taxes 
12 days ago
THREES - A tiny puzzle that grows on you.
Next, came 2048 about ten days later. A game system identical to 1024 with one tweak, it removed the stones. Since, the game has grown in popularity after a posting on Hacker News on March 10th. It’s freely available and open source, allows swipes so it can be played on the phone and has spawned many variants since, including our personal favorite: Numberwang 2048.

It’s all in good fun, at least we’d like to think so, but try as our logical brains might, we still got the same “cloning feeling". Especially when people called Threes, a game we poured over for nearly a year and a half, a clone of 2048
design  originality  games 
12 days ago
Why Massachusetts should defect from its time zone - Ideas - The Boston Globe
On the shortest evening of the year, the sun sets here at 4:11. When they graduate, they might find themselves with options in New York, where the shortest day extends to 4:28, or Palo Alto, where it’s 4:50! Shifting one time zone would give us a 5:11 sunset—a small but meaningful competitive change.
boston 
12 days ago
Lauren Gates, from the Office of Naval Research (ONR),
EW YORK (May 28, 2010) Lauren Gates, from the Office of Naval Research (ONR), introduces Octavia to visitors during Fleet Week New York 2010. Octavia is a mobile, dexterous, social (MDS) robot that can move around on wheels (mobile), pick up objects (dexterous) and express a range of humanlike facial emotions (social). The ONR human robotics interaction research program focuses on the abilities of teams of humans and autonomous systems to communicate clearly, collaborate to solve problems, and interact via means both locally and remotely. (U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams/Released)
13 days ago
Pope, "Epistle to Arbuthnot," ed. Lynch
 Peace to all such! but were there one whose fires
True Genius kindles, and fair fame inspires,
Blest with each talent and each art to please, [195]
And born to write, converse, and live with ease:
Should such a man, too fond to rule alone,
Bear, like the Turk, no brother near the throne,
View him with scornful, yet with jealous eyes,
And hate for arts that caus'd himself to rise; [200]
Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike;
Alike reserv'd to blame, or to commend, [205]
A tim'rous foe, and a suspicious friend;
Dreading ev'n fools, by flatterers besieg'd,
And so obliging, that he ne'er oblig'd;
power  poetry  narcissism 
15 days ago
Lawfare › How a Blonde Tattooed Texas Girl Became an ISIS Twitter Star
If you were to pass me on the street, you would never suspect I’m a Muslim: I don’t wear hijab. I have platinum blonde hair and blue eyes. And I am heavily tattooed. I grew up in Texas and was raised Southern Baptist. I use the word “y’all” a lot—and not ironically. But I am Muslim. I also speak Arabic and hold a Master’s degree in International Security with a focus on terrorism and the Middle East. Several years ago, I realized that although I had long studied, analyzed, and written about Islamic political theory and how jihadist ideologues like Osama bin Laden use the Qur’an to justify their heinous acts of violence, I had never actually read the Qur’an. So I read it—and what I found in its pages changed my life. I found answers to questions about faith and belief and morality that had been plaguing me since my youth. I found the connection to God I thought I had lost. And three years ago, I converted to Islam.

Just to be clear: I detest the twisted interpretations of Islam espoused by the likes of Al Qaeda and ISIS just as much today as I did before I converted—in fact, probably more so, since now I see it not only as a sick bastardization of a beautiful religion, but a sick bastardization of my beautiful religion.
16 days ago
The end of kindness: weev and the cult of the angry young man | The Verge
he wanted to punish her for speaking out, for seeking assistance. One of the ironies about this is that since his arrest, Auernheimer has repeatedly asked for help. He also complained that the government robbed him of his right to free speech, though by making Sierra a target for identity theft and physical attacks, he intimidated her into silence. Auernheimer complains that the government wrongly used its considerable resources and power against him. That has to be the biggest irony of all.
weev  abuse  harassment 
16 days ago
‘Yes Means Yes’ Is a Bad Coupling of Feminism and the State – The Conversation - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education
California’s enacting on Sunday of the “yes means yes” law is a victory for some campus feminist activists but an ill-conceived detour for feminism.
toread 
17 days ago
The crayola-fication of the world: How we gave colors names, and it messed with our brains (part I) | WIRED
n Japan, people often refer to traffic lights as being blue in color. And this is a bit odd, because the traffic signal indicating ‘go’ in Japan is just as green as it is anywhere else in the world. So why is the color getting lost in translation? This visual conundrum has its roots in the history of language.
color  culture 
17 days ago
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