Tags: tracking

The ethics of modern web ad-blocking – Marco.org

Yes! Yes! YES!

Marco makes the same comparison I did between the dark days of pop-up windows and the current abysmal state of bloated ads and tracking on today’s web.

This won’t be a clean, easy transition. Blocking pop-ups was much more incisive: it was easy for legitimate publishers to avoid one narrowly-useful Javascript function to open new windows. But it’s completely reasonable for today’s web readers to be so fed up that they disable all ads, or even all Javascript. Web developers and standards bodies couldn’t be more out of touch with this issue, racing ahead to give browsers and Javascript even more capabilities without adequately addressing the fundamental problems that will drive many people to disable huge chunks of their browser’s functionality.

Amen!

I have one more thing to add to this list…

But publishers, advertisers, and browser vendors are all partly responsible for the situation we’re all in.

…developers. Somebody put those harm-causing script elements on those pages. Like I said: “What will you be apologising for in decades to come?”

In a few years, after the dust has settled, we’re all going to look back at today’s web’s excesses and abuses as an almost unbelievable embarrassment.

Meet the Online Tracking Device That is Virtually Impossible to Block - ProPublica

Well, thanks to the ass-hattery of AddThis, the use case of your site’s visitors switching off JavaScript for (legitimate) security reasons just became a lot more plausible.

But you’re using JavaScript as an enhancement, right? You’re not relying on it for core tasks, right?

This Recycling Bin Is Stalking You by Siraj Datoo in The Atlantic Cities

I, for one, welcome our new recycling bin panopticon overlords.

You might want to put your phone’s MAC address into this form.

Silicon Valley through a PRISM · Ben Ward

Ben is rightly worried by the blasé attitude in the tech world to the PRISM revelations. Perhaps that attitude stems from a culture of “log everything by default”?

I think there’s a deep rooted trait within this industry that sedates the outrage. That is the normality, complicity, and dependency on ‘surveillance’ in the software we make.

The irregular musings of Lou Montulli: The reasoning behind Web Cookies

A fascinating look at the history of cookies …from the inventor of cookies.

Myself, quantified | Extenuating Circumstances

Dan writes about how data saved his life. That is not an exaggeration.

He describes how, after receiving some very bad news from his doctor, he dived into the whole “quantified self” thing with his health data. Looking back on it, he concludes:

If I were still in the startup game, I have a pretty good idea of which industry I’d want to disrupt.

Don’t listen to Le Corbusier—or Jakob Nielsen : Cheerful

A beautiful call to arms against engineerism in design. Software cries out for love.

Mike Harvkey - Closely Watched – The 10 best long tracking shots ever filmed - True/Slant

I'll take any excuse to watch the opening of Touch of Evil — I don't think it'll ever be topped.

Welcome | Sifter

Garrett has launched his bug-tracking web app. Looks lovely.

LIVE REAL TIME SATELLITE AND SPACE SHUTTLE TRACKING

A real time satellite tracking web application. Over 8000 satellites are tracked and can be displayed on the familiar Google Maps interface.

NextUpdate.com Home | Next Update

Garrett's bug tracking software is one step closer to completion.

Facebook's Misrepresentation of Beacon's Threat to Privacy: Tracking users who opt out or are not logged in. - CA Security Advisor Research Blog - CA

An excellent piece of research that shows how Facebook affiliates' cross-site scripting (Beacon) sends information back to the mothership regardless of whether the user has opted out.

BuzzFeed

A new site for tracking what's hot and what's not.

news @ nature.com - Web users judge sites in the blink of an eye - Potential readers can make snap decisions in just 50 milliseconds.

People enjoy being right, so continuing to use a website that gave a good first impression helps to 'prove' to themselves that they made a good initial decision.