[Easy Chair] | The Wizard of Q, by Walter Kirn | Harper's Magazine
He’d discovered a principle of online storytelling that had eluded me all those years ago but now seemed obvious: The audience for internet narratives doesn’t want to read, it wants to write. It doesn’t want answers provided, it wants to search for them. It doesn’t want to sit and be amused, it wants to be sent on a mission. It wants to do.
weekly  narrative  internet 
2 hours ago
‘Do Not Track’ Privacy Tool Doesn’t Do Anything
“Do Not Track,” as it was first imagined a decade ago by consumer advocates, was going to be a “Do Not Call” list for the internet, helping to free people from annoying targeted ads and creepy data collection. But only a handful of sites respect the request, the most prominent of which are Pinterest and Medium. (Pinterest won’t use offsite data to target ads to a visitor who’s elected not to be tracked, while Medium won’t send their data to third parties.) The vast majority of sites, including this one, ignore it.
privacy  donottrack 
21 hours ago
Reflecting on a MagicMirror Build - DEV Community 👩‍💻👨‍💻
MagicMirror² is an open source modular smart mirror platform. With a growing list of installable modules, the MagicMirror² allows you to convert your hallway or bathroom mirror into your personal assistant.
mirror  weekly  opensource 
23 hours ago
[no title]
Now that the crypto bloodbath is in full view the new refuge of the
crypto scoundrels is “blockchain”, the technology underlying crypto
that is now alleged to be the cure of all global problems, including
poverty, famines and even diseases. But as discussed in detail below
blockchain is the most over-hyped – and least useful - technology in
human history: in practice it is nothing better than a glorified
spreadsheet or database.
weekly  crypto  bitcoin  blockchain 
2 days ago
Kara Swisher on the worst and best bosses she’s ever had.
: ‘Babylon was.’ Which means: Every major power falls.”
weekly  tshirt  todo 
2 days ago
#digitalsherlocks hashtag on Twitter
Interesting crowd participation pattern in media analysis --- mainly Russia related.
weekly  journalism  crowd 
3 days ago
An Airbnb guesthouse of horrors - The Boston Globe
“Sorry about the confusion. Life’s too short for me to give you an explanation. Have a nice time in LA.”
weekly  quote 
6 days ago
"I just know" replaces systematic reviews at top of evidence pyramid
“After much research and deliberation, we feel we cannot ignore what a parent or conspiracy theorist feels “in their gut”. There are just too many anecdotes and too many people buying untested alternative health products to ignore this any longer,” explained SHEA spokesman Dr. Harold Rami.
weekly  truth  lies  parody 
7 days ago
New U.S. Weapons Systems Are a Hackers’ Bonanza, Investigators Find - The New York Times
Sometimes the testing teams toyed with their Pentagon targets. One team “reported that they caused a pop-up message to appear on users’ terminals instructing them to insert two quarters to continue operating.”
weekly  hacking  security 
7 days ago
Enigma Public
We've curated the world's broadest collection of public data into a single searchable, explorable web portal and API.
open  data  weekly  api 
9 days ago
awesomedata/awesome-public-datasets: A topic-centric list of high-quality open datasets in public domains. New PR ☛☛☛
This list of a topic-centric public data sources in high quality. They are collected and tidied from blogs, answers, and user responses. Most of the data sets listed below are free, however, some are not. Other amazingly awesome lists can be found in sindresorhus's awesome list.
weekly  open  data  source  github 
9 days ago
A philosopher explains how our addiction to stories keeps us from understanding history - The Verge
The problem is, these historical narratives seduce you into thinking you really understand what’s going on and why things happened, but most of it is guessing people’s motives and their inner thoughts. It allays your curiosity, and you’re satisfied psychologically by the narrative, and it connects the dots so you feel you’re in the shoes of the person whose narrative is being recorded. It has seduced you into a false account, and now you think you understand.

The second part is that it effectively prevents you from going on to try to find the right theory and correct account of events. And the third problem, which is the gravest, is that people use narratives because of their tremendous emotional impact to drive human actions, movements, political parties, religions, ideologies. And many movements, like nationalism and intolerant religions, are driven by narrative and are harmful and dangerous for humanity.
weekly  storytelling  truth  lies  emotion  history 
9 days ago
“Telling the Bees” | JSTOR Daily
This practice of “telling the bees” may have its origins in Celtic mythology where the presence of a bee after a death signified the soul leaving the body, but the tradition appears to have been most prominent in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in the U.S. and Western Europe. The ritual involves notifying honey bees of major events in the beekeeper’s life, such as a death or marriage.
weekly  bees  rituals 
10 days ago
DeVos’ security detail projected to cost up to $7.7M during the next year - POLITICO
The Marshals Service said the final cost of protection for DeVos in fiscal 2018 was $6.79 million.
weekly  education  money 
12 days ago
Planning to Vote in the November Election? Why Most Americans Probably Won’t - The New York Times
Ms. Hill watched as smiling politicians kept making promises and, in her view, growing richer.

----data viz average net worth of politicians over time adjusted for inflation . . .
weekly  data  dataviz  todo  project  politics 
14 days ago
Software disenchantment @ tonsky.me
As a general trend, we’re not getting faster software with more features. We’re getting faster hardware that runs slower software with the same features. Everything works way below the possible speed. Ever wonder why your phone needs 30 to 60 seconds to boot? Why can’t it boot, say, in one second? There are no physical limitations to that. I would love to see that. I would love to see limits reached and explored, utilizing every last bit of performance we can get for something meaningful in a meaningful way.
weekly  progress  technology  goals 
16 days ago
Build Your Own Learning Tools (BYOT) | OUseful.Info, the blog...
One of the things I’ve started exploring recently is the extent to which we can create “reproducible” (open) educational resources using Jupyter notebooks. Part of the rationale for this is that if the means of producing a particular asset are provided, then it becomes much easier to reuse the assets with modification. However, I’ve also come to appreciate that having a computational environment to hand also means we can explore the taught subject matter in a wider variety of ways.
tools  diy  oer  weekly 
16 days ago
The first “social network” of brains lets three people transmit thoughts to each other’s heads - MIT Technology Review
Together, these devices make it possible to send and receive signals directly to and from the brain. But nobody has created a network that allows group communication. Until now. 
weekly  brain  technology 
18 days ago
World War II bombings weakened upper atmosphere at edge of space | Ars Technica
"Residents would routinely recall being thrown through the air by the pressure waves of air mines exploding."
weekly  wwii  ww2  bombs  environment 
20 days ago
List: Myths About Your Thirties — Debunked - McSweeney’s Internet Tendency
The media sources that are reliable sources of news and information and the ones that are evil and designed to manipulate dumbasses will blend together and you will not be able to tell the difference without consulting Snopes, which you’re also not sure if you can trust.
weekly  truth  lies 
23 days ago
Why I’m done with Chrome – A Few Thoughts on Cryptographic Engineering
For ten years I’ve been asked a single question by the Chrome browser: “Do you want to log in with your Google account?” And for ten years I’ve said no thanks. Chrome still asks me that question — it’s just that now it doesn’t honor my decision.
weekly  privacy  chrome  data 
24 days ago
Kaiten - Wikipedia
Kaiten (回天, literal translation: "Return to Heaven", commonly rendered as "turn of the Heaven's will", "the heaven shaker"[1]) were manned torpedoes and suicide craft, used by the Imperial Japanese Navy in the final stages of World War II.
weekly  history  manned  torpedo  war  wwii 
24 days ago
In the Eyes of the Animal
another experiential animal eye
Umwelt  vr  browser  animals  weekly 
28 days ago
Animal Vision Simulator
see the world through the eyes of various animals - android phone app
phone  augmented  reality  Umwelt  vision  weekly 
28 days ago
Light Work: The Rise of NBA Skills Trainers - The Ringer
Bazzell is a part of a new generation of skills trainers who have utilized social media to their advantage and in the process turned the profession mainstream. Today you would be hard-pressed to find an NBA player who doesn’t have “their guy,” whether they’re team-affiliated or from the private sector. Players work out with their trainers in the offseason, do film work with them, and keep in contact—sometimes in person—throughout the season. Some have even been hired on their trainees’ teams. In recent years, these trainers have become more than just another face in an NBA player’s entourage. They are highlight-reel curators, entrepreneurs, and newsmakers. To the chagrin of some of their peers, some are even social media celebrities.
weekly  sports  socialmedia 
29 days ago
Design Thinking Is Fundamentally Conservative and Preserves the Status Quo
Although it is often advertised as a method that is as innovative as the solutions it promises to produce, it bears an uncanny resemblance to an earlier model of problem-solving, celebrated in the 1970s and 1980s for the superior solutions it was supposed to produce. Called the “rational-experimental” approach to problem solving, it was a simplified and popularized version of the scientific method, in much the same way that design thinking is a stylized — some say “dumbed down” — version of the methods designers use.  It, too, was enthusiastically embraced by managers and policy makers, and was invoked to reshape practices in firms and government.

....

They turn the everyday ability to solve a problem into a rarified practice, limited only to those who self-consciously follow a specialized methodology.
weekly  design  thinking  fad  fraud  dystopia 
6 weeks ago
Google and Facebook Didn't End Data Privacy - The Atlantic
Location data was particularly voluminous, with Android smartphones conveying a user’s position in space more than 300 times in a 24-hour period—even if the user has turned off location history in the device’s Google settings. The study also shows that the “incognito” mode in Google’s Chrome browser, which promises to hide a user’s information from websites while browsing, still makes it possible for Google to connect those supposedly hidden visits to its own, internal profile of a user.
privacy  data  tracking  weekly 
6 weeks ago
ARIES
Art historians have traditionally used physical light boxes to prepare exhibits or curate collections. On a light box, they can place slides or printed images, move the images around at will, group them as desired, and visually compare them. The transition to digital images has rendered this workflow obsolete. Now, art historians lack well-designed, unified interactive software tools that effectively support the operations they perform with physical light boxes.
tool  art  history  lightbox  images 
7 weeks ago
Coffee delivery drone patented by IBM - BBC News
A coffee-delivering drone that can detect when people are tired and bring them a drink has been patented by technology company IBM.
weekly  drone  ibm  productivity  dystopia 
7 weeks ago
We took a tour of the abandoned college campuses of Second Life
Colleges were among those that bought the hype of the Linden Lab-developed virtual world. Many universities set up their own private islands to engage students; some even held classes within Second Life.

Most of these virtual universities are gone –– it costs almost $300 per month to host your own island –– but it turns out a handful remain as ghost towns. I decided to travel through several of the campuses, to see what's happening in Second Life college-world in 2015

First, I didn't see a a single other user during my tour. They are all truly abandoned.
weekly  virtual  secondllife 
8 weeks ago
When You Hear _______, Pay Attention – Hacker Noon
... you’re about to fall into a trap and need to pay attention):

Might as well do [some extra thing] while we [do the original thing]
weekly  consider 
9 weeks ago
Fallout 76's Downright Exciting Plan to Deal With Griefing and Trolls :: Games :: Features :: Fallout 76 :: Paste
Howard says they wanted the game to have an element of danger without griefing, which is a tall order in an open world online game. To achieve this, they implemented features that will greatly reduce any incentive to grief other players, and turn those that do into the villains. For example, when you shoot another player, your character only does a small amount of damage, with more damage awarded if you continue and engage and enter into PvP. Players who die may seek revenge for their deaths, gaining double reward of caps and XP. Players that kill those who didn’t want to be engaged are labeled a “wanted murderer” and have a bounty placed on their head. If you are labeled a wanted murderer, you will receive no reward for those kills. Wanted murderers will also appear on your map as a red star denoting the bounty on their head, and the bounty comes out of their personal stash of caps. They also cannot see the other characters on the map.
weekly  games  videogame  motivation  behavior 
9 weeks ago
Welcome to Coyote | Coyote
--would also make for an interesting project for English and art classes

The open-source Coyote software was developed by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago to support a distributed workflow for describing images in our web CMS and publishing those descriptions to our public website. The MCA team is creating both alt-text descriptions of 20–30 words, as well as much longer descriptions, particularly of collection works.
accessibility  art  weekly 
10 weeks ago
Fostering focus for small screens – Dropbox Design – Medium
A nice before/after redesign post with a focus on mobile and simplicity.
weekly  webdev  simplify  design 
11 weeks ago
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