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The new dot com bubble is here: it’s called online advertising - The Correspondent

The benchmarks that advertising companies use — intended to measure the number of clicks, sales and downloads that occur after an ad is viewed — are fundamentally misleading. None of these benchmarks distinguish between the selection effect (clicks, purchases and downloads that are happening anyway) and the advertising effect (clicks, purchases and downloads that would not have happened without ads).

It gets worse: the brightest minds of this generation are creating algorithms which only increase the effects of selection.

A terrificly well-written piece on the emperor’s new clothes worn by online advertising. Equal parts economic rigour and Gladwellian anecdata, it’s a joy to read! Kudos to Alana Gillespie for the great translation work (the original article was written in Dutch).

We currently assume that advertising companies always benefit from more data. … But the majority of advertising companies feed their complex algorithms silos full of data even though the practice never delivers the desired result. In the worst case, all that invasion of privacy can even lead to targeting the wrong group of people.

This insight is conspicuously absent from the debate about online privacy. At the moment, we don’t even know whether all this privacy violation works as advertised.

The interaction design of this article is great too—annotations, charts, and more!

Automate your outgoing webmentions

I’ve been kicking the tyres on this great new tool from Remy. Give it a URL and it’ll find all the links in its h-entrys and automatically send webmentions to them. Very cool!

The documentation on the site is excellent, guiding you to the right solution for your particular needs. Read Remy’s announcement:

I’ve also tried very hard to get the documentation to be as welcoming as I can. I’ve tried to think about my dear visitor and what they want to do with the software, rather than type my typical developer approach to documentation - listing all the features and options.

Dark theme in a day – Marcin Wichary – Medium

On Ev’s blog, Marcin goes into great detail on theming an interface using CSS custom properties, SVG, HSL, and a smattering of CSS filters.

I was kind of amazed that all of this could happen via CSS and CSS alone: the colours, the transitions, the vectors, and even the images.

Transforming Our Libraries from Analog to Digital: A 2020 Vision | EDUCAUSE

Brewster Kahle outlines his vision for library collaboration in curating and distributing digital works.

Photo Toning with Gradients & Blend Modes

This use-case for blend modes is making me thirsty.

Also: look who’s blogging again!

THE WALK OF LIFE PROJECT

The thesis: any film is improved by playing Walk Of Life by Dire Straits over the ending.

The proof: this website.

(this is absorbing and brilliant)

New Titles in Lending Library! « The Open Library Blog

You can now borrow HTML5 For Web Designers through the Open Library. Nice one, George!

Welcome to Game Neverending

Game Neverending is back. For real. Get nostalgic with this blast from the past.

Transcending CSS: The Fine Art of Web Design by Andy Clarke

Andy showed me some pages from the book over video iChat today. It looks great.