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Hacked On Classics - The Old Market

Seb is going to be closing out the Brighton Digital Festival with a bang.

Seb unravels all the geeky details about how your favourite retro gadgets work, including Nintendo light guns, Casio keyboards and the cathode ray tube televisions that once dominated our living rooms.

It’s going to be like Seb: The Musical …with lasers.

Nordic.js 2016 • Jeremy Keith - Resilience: Tried and tested approaches - YouTube

I’m just back from a little mini 3-conference tour of Europe where I was delivering my talk on resilience. The first stop was Stockholm for Nordic.js and the video is already online.

The Long, Remarkable History of the GIF

The history of the GIF—a tale of licensing, compression, and standards.

The Forgotten Kaleidoscope Craze in Victorian England | Atlas Obscura

A wonderful investigation of a culture-shifting mobile device: the kaleidoscope. A classic Gibsonian example of the street finding its own uses for technology, this story comes complete with moral panics about the effects of augmenting reality with handheld devices.

(I’m assuming the title wasn’t written by the author—this piece deals almost exclusively with pre-Victorian England.)

React Isomorphic Demo

It is possible to use React without relying completely on client-side JavaScript to render all your content—though it’s certainly not the default way most tutorials teach React. This ongoing tutorial aims to redress that imbalance.

Besides the main benefit of server rendering giving faster page loads, it also enables large amounts of the site to run without JavaScript. There are many reasons why you would want this, but my personal reasons are that it allows you to completely drop support JavaScript in older browsers, but still have the site function.

The Business Case for Progressive Web Apps - Cloud Four

Jason looks at the business reasons for and against building progressive web apps. In short, there’s everything to gain and nothing to lose.

Seriously, why would you not add a Service Worker and a manifest file to your site? (assuming you’re already on HTTPS)

The History of the URL: Domain, Protocol, and Port - Eager Blog

From the ARPANET to the internet, this is a great history of the Domain Name System:

Root DNS servers operate in safes, inside locked cages. A clock sits on the safe to ensure the camera feed hasn’t been looped. Particularly given how slow DNSSEC implementation has been, an attack on one of those servers could allow an attacker to redirect all of the Internet traffic for a portion of Internet users. This, of course, makes for the most fantastic heist movie to have never been made.

The Internet | Thought Economics

The World Wide Web, with all of its pages, blogs and so on- has allowed human expression in ways that would have been uneconomic and out of reach before. The most dramatic effect has been this ability for almost anyone to express himself or herself whenever they want to- and potentially be heard by many others.

Vint Cerf there, taking part in this wide-ranging discussion with, among others, Kevin Kelly and Bob Metcalfe.

The introduction leans a bit too heavily on Nicholas Carr for my liking, but it ends up in a good place.

The internet connects us cognitively and becomes a membrane through which our minds can interact, manifesting a whole new iteration of our species, who have begun to exist in a connected symbiotic relationship with technology.

The internet is the first technology we have created, that makes us more human.

Brighton Astro

The website for Brighton’s astronomy meet up:

Every month we will have one or two talks aimed at beginners with an interest in learning more about astronomy, but assuming no prior knowledge.

Also, we will take our telescopes out to observe in and around Brighton on clear evenings - on the seafront, Hove and Preston Park, Devil’s Dyke and beyond.

Jeremy Keith | < A > | HTML Special, CSS Day on Vimeo

The video of my talk on hypertext at the HTML Special before CSS Day. I’m pretty with my delivery here. There’s a bit of Q&A afterwards as well.

Audacious Fox: Mini Interview: Loren Brichter on the Sale of Letterpress to Solebon

Colin pointed out this interesting perspective from an iOS developer moving to the web:

My work for the last few years has been on the web, and honestly, it’s a breath of fresh air. Instant refreshing, surprisingly good debugging / perf tools, intrinsically multi-platform, and most importantly, open.

Web tech gets a lot of shit from native devs (some of it deserved). But the alternatives are worse. I find the entire concept of App Review morally questionable despite Apple’s good intentions. So I sleep better at night not being part of that anymore. Sure, the web is messy, and it’s delicate, but it’s important and good and getting better fast.

Remarks at the SASE Panel On The Moral Economy of Tech

People who excel at software design become convinced that they have a unique ability to understand any kind of system at all, from first principles, without prior training, thanks to their superior powers of analysis. Success in the artificially constructed world of software design promotes a dangerous confidence.

Great stuff as usual from Maciej, ending with a rallying cry for us to pay attention to history:

This is not the first time an enthusiastic group of nerds has decided to treat the rest of the world as a science experiment. Earlier attempts to create a rationalist Utopia failed for interesting reasons, and since we bought those lessons at a great price, it would be a shame not to learn them.

There is also prior art in attempts at achieving immortality, limitless wealth, and Galactic domination. We even know what happens if you try to keep dossiers on an entire country.

If we’re going to try all these things again, let’s at least learn from our past, so we can fail in interesting new ways, instead of failing in the same exasperating ways as last time.

Making bad ads sad. Rad! - O’Reilly Media

A great talk from Bruce on the digital self-defence that ad-blockers provide. I think it’s great that Opera are building ad-blocking straight into the browser.

Human scale technology — Medium

A wonderful rallying cry for the indie web:

Do it yourself. Strip it down. Keep control. Make it for your community. Don’t do it for the money.

And this is where I start to understand what my friend Rebecca Gates means when she says that technologists and designers have a lot to learn from punk and indie rock. Leave the expensive, large scale, commercial arena rock to Facebook, Google, and Twitter.

We can be The Ramones.

And Bad Brains.

We can press our own records, and run our own labels.

We can make our own spaces based on our own values.

Such a shame that it’s only on Medium—the MOR of online publishing.

Man-Computer Symbiosis

J. C. R. Licklider’s seminal 1960 paper. I’ve added it to this list of reading material.

The title should, of course, read “Person-Computer Symbiosis.”

Dave Goes Build - daverupert.com

I think I’ve gotten tired of Google telling me “This is how you have to build websites now.” Or Apple coming down from the mountain once a year saying “Here are the two new products you will buy this year.”

Shane Becker - Regarding the Indie Web : Why

Why Get on the Indie Web?

In a word, autonomy.

See also:

The Indie Web is made of people. It’s made by me. It can be made by you too. There’s no gatekeeper. You can join anytime without anyone’s permission. The Indie Web is made by everyone.

Semantic CSS - Snook.ca

Snook has been on a roll lately, sharing lots of great insights into front-end development. This is a particularly astute post about that perennial issue of naming things.

Everything is a Remix: The Force Awakens on Vimeo

The newest Kirby Ferguson video looks at remixing through the lens of the newest Star Wars film.

Archiving a Website for Ten Thousand Years - The Atlantic

Prompted by the way Craig is handling the shutdown of hi.co, Glenn Fleishman takes a look at other digital preservation efforts and talk to Laura Welcher at the Long Now Foundation.

A time capsule is bottled optimism. It makes material the belief that human beings will survive long enough to retrieve and decode artifacts of the distant past.

Archiving Our Online Communities — Medium

Now this is how you shut down a service:

  • Maintain read-only URLs for at least ten years.
  • Create physical copies etched in metal held by cultural institutions for ten thousand years.
  • Allow users to export their data (of course).

Web projects often lack hard edges. They begin with clarity but end without. We want to close Hi.co with clarity. To properly bookend the website.

And nary a trace of “We are excited to announce…” or “Thank you for joining us on our incredible journey…”

(Such a shame that the actual shut-down notice is only on Ev’s blog, but hopefully Craig will write something on his own site too.)

The Sonos Pattern Library — zdfs

There’s a lot I disagree with here. I don’t think this pattern library process is very elegant or scalable, and it certainly wouldn’t work for me.

But I’m still linking to it. Why? Because I think it’s absolutely wonderful that people share their processes like this. It doesn’t matter one whit whether or not it would work for me.

Frontend development may have gotten a lot more complicated, but the simple premise of sharing what you’ve learned hasn’t.

I couldn’t agree more!

How Literature Became Word Perfect | New Republic

An engaging look at the history of word processing, word processed by Josephine Livingstone.

Bots | A Working Library

Absolutely brilliant stuff from Mandy (again). A long hard at today’s tech industry’s narrow approach to bots and artificial intelligence compared to some far more interesting and imaginative approaches in fiction:

  • Ann Leckie’s superb Imperial Radch series,
  • Kim Stanley Robinson’s Aurora, and
  • Alex Garland’s Ex Machina.

So in addition to frightening ramifications for privacy and information discovery, they also reinforce gendered stereotypes about women as servants. The neutral politeness that infects them all furthers that convention: women should be utilitarian, performing their duties on command without fuss or flourish. This is a vile, harmful, and dreadfully boring fantasy; not the least because there is so much extraordinary art around AI that both deconstructs and subverts these stereotypes. It takes a massive failure of imagination to commit yourself to building an artificial intelligence and then name it “Amy.”

Wicked Ambiguity and User Experience

This is my kind of talk—John Snow’s cholera map, the Yucca Mountain think-tank, the Pioneer plaque, the Voyager record, the Drake equation, the Arecibo signal, and the love song of J. Alfred Prufrock.

♫ These are a few of my fav-our-ite things! ♫

Claude Shannon, the Father of the Information Age, Turns 1100100 - The New Yorker

A lovely profile of Claude Shannon (concluding with an unexpected Brighton connection).

OOUX: A Foundation for Interaction Design · An A List Apart Article

I really, really like this approach. I’ve used something similar in my responsive design workshops, where I get people to break things down into nouns and verbs (objects and actions). I think there’s a lot of crossover with good URL design here too—this is kind of like REST for UX designers.

I, Website | CSS-Tricks

Chris’s homage to I, Pencil.

I, Website, am a complex combination of miracles.

Beyond Work

An ongoing photography project from Curtis:

Beyond Work tells stories about humans at work, with no judgement or glorification. It’s an attempt at unearthing the social, cultural and functional world of work, that’s become invisible in everyday life.

The New York Herald, August 7, 1865

A transatlantic cable, hurrah!

Clarity 2016 Wrapup by Chris Coyier on CodePen

As well as compèring the event, Chris took the time to make notes at the Clarity conference, dedicated to all things patterny.

Node: Up and Running

One of these days I’m going to step outside of my PHP comfort zone and actually build something in Node. One of these days. When I do, this book looks like a good place to start (and the online version is free).

Clarity Conf: Brad Frost

I wish I could’ve made it to the Clarity conference—I had a Salter Cane gig to play—but luckily for me, Brad took lots of notes.

Terraforming on Vimeo

There’s that Acheulean hand ax again.

The first ever object to be designed by man 1.7 million years ago was a flint hand axe. Flint has the same molecular structure as a crystal and they both consist of silica. The project juxtaposes the flint hand axe with the latest crystal technology; Xero chaton the world’s smallest precision cut crystal measuring 0.6mm in diameter, smaller than a grain of sand.

Hand Ax Technology - A Legend In Sustainability

Even more intriguing than their vast distribution across three continents is their time depth. Acheulean hand axes have been found at sites spanning 1.5 million years of human existence, dating from roughly 1.6 million years ago to about 100,000 years ago. That makes the Acheulean ax the most sustainable technology that members of our genus (Homo) ever developed. Consider, in contrast, the amount of technological change that has occurred in just the last 150 years (since the first telephone call), one ten-thousandth the amount of time the Acheulean hand ax was made and used. Or consider the amount of technological change in just the last 10 years (since the first iPhone was introduced), one one-hundred-fifty-thousandth the amount of time that Acheulean hand axes were made and used. In the memorable words of my former professor Arthur J. Jelinek, hand axes represent “mind-numbing technological stability.”

All our imagined futures | A Working Library

Science fiction as a means of energising climatic and economic change:

Fiction, and science fiction in particular, can help us imagine many futures, and in particular can help us to direct our imaginations towards the futures we want. Imagining a particular kind of future isn’t just day dreaming: it’s an important and active framing that makes it possible for us to construct a future that approaches that imagined vision. In other words, imagining the future is one way of making that future happen.

But it’s important that these visions are preserved:

It’s very likely that our next Octavia Butler is today writing on WattPad or Tumblr or Facebook. When those servers cease to respond, what will we lose? More than the past is at stake—all our imagined futures are at risk, too.

Outline Your Talk with Presenter Notes — Ladies in Tech

Continuing the topic of public speaking, Jenn has a really good technique for figuring out how to arrange the pieces of your talk without getting bogged down in designing slides.

Eternal 5D data storage could record the history of humankind

360 terabytes of data stored for over 13 billion years:

Coined as the ‘Superman memory crystal’, as the glass memory has been compared to the “memory crystals” used in the Superman films, the data is recorded via self-assembled nanostructures created in fused quartz. The information encoding is realised in five dimensions: the size and orientation in addition to the three dimensional position of these nanostructures.

Watch the Watchers

Monika’s end-of-year piece is rather excellent:

The map exposes the network of fibre optic internet cables that lie deep below the sea giving an unfettered glimpse of the government’s counterterrorism tactics and the murky justifications behind them.

#nodigitaldarkage? — Blog of the Long Now

A note of optimism for digital preservation:

Where a lack of action may have been more of the case in the 01990s, it is certainly less so today. In the early days, there were just a handful of pioneers talking about and working on digital preservation, but today there are hundreds of tremendously intelligent and skilled people focused on preserving access to the yottabytes of digital cultural heritage and science data we have and will create.

Banjos and Discrete Technologies | stevebenford

An examination of how sites like The Session are meshing with older ideas of traditional Irish music:

There is a very interesting tension at play here – one that speaks directly to the design of new technologies. On the one hand, Irish musicians appear to be enthusiastically adopting digital media to establish a common repertoire of tunes, while on the other the actual performance of these tunes in a live session is governed by a strong etiquette that emphasizes the importance of playing by ear.

There’s an accompanying paper called Supporting Traditional Music-Making: Designing for Situated Discretion (PDF).

The Facebook-Loving Farmers of Myanmar - The Atlantic

A fascinating slice of ethnographic research in Myanmar by Craig. There’s no mention of the web, which is certainly alarming, but then again, that’s not the focus of the research.

Interestingly, while Facebook is all omnipresent and dominant, nobody is using it the way that Facebook wants: all the accounts are basically “fake”.

What I found fascinating are the ways that people have found to bypass app stores. They’re basically being treated as damage and routed ‘round. So while native apps are universal, app stores would appear to be a first world problem.

Now if there were only some kind of universally accessible distribution channel that didn’t require any kind of installation step …hmmm.

A Flag for No Nations | booktwo.org

This a magnificent piece of writing from James …all about pieces of metal fabric.

A single technology – the vacuum-deposition of metal vapour onto a thin film substrate – makes its consecutive and multiple appearances at times of stress and trial: at the dawn of the space age, in orbit and on other planets, at the scene of athletic feats of endurance, in defence and offence in the mountains of the Hindu Kush, on the beaches of the European archipelago. These are moments of hope as well as failure; moments when, properly utilised, technological progress enables us to achieve something which was beyond our capabilities before. And yet: we are still pulling bodies from the water wrapped in material which was meant to send us into space.

20 Years Ago Today

A lovely reminiscence from Matt on how he came to fall in love with the World Wide Web.

I really hope he posts this on his own site—it’ll be a shame when this disappears along with everything else being posted to Medium.

oldweb.today

Such a vividly nostalgic project. Choose an obsolete browser. Enter a URL. Select which slice of the past you want to see.

Digital archives in action. Access drives preservation.

Universal React ◆ 24 ways

I have no hands-on experience with React, but this tutorial by Jack Franklin looks like a great place to start. Before the tutorial begins he succinctly and clearly outlines the perfect architecture for building on the web today:

  • The user visits www.yoursite.com and the server executes your JavaScript to generate the HTML it needs to render the page.
  • In the background, the client-side JavaScript is executed and takes over the duty of rendering the page.
  • The next time a user clicks, rather than being sent to the server, the client-side app is in control.
  • If the user doesn’t have JavaScript enabled, each click on a link goes to the server and they get the server-rendered content again.

YES!!!

Y’know, I had a chance to chat briefly with Jack at the Edge conference in London and I congratulated him on the launch of a Go Cardless site that used exactly this technique. He told me that the decision to flip the switch and make it act as a single page app came right at the end of the project. I think that points to a crucial mindset that’s reiterated here:

Now we’ll build the React application entirely on the server, before adding the client-side JavaScript right at the end.

I Dreamed of a Perfect Database | New Republic

A really nice piece by Paul Ford on the history of databases and the dream of the Semantic Web.

Sometimes I get a little wistful. The vision of a world of connected facts, one big, living library, remains beautiful, and unfulfilled.

One thing though: the scrolling on this page is sooooo janky that I had to switch off JavaScript just to read these words comfortably.

Strange Horizons Fiction: Let Us Now Praise Awesome Dinosaurs, by Leonard Richardson

A riotously great short story…

“It always comes down to that, doesn’t it?” said the voice in disgust, now circling around Tark. “Whether a successful Internet filmmaker can also be insane. Given that his quote-unquote insanity is also the fuel for his objectively measurable success as an entrepreneur. And whether it makes sense to judge him by the standards of talking dinosaurs from Mars.”

Museum of Endangered Sounds

Sounds from our collective technological past.

(I’ll look past the fact that the sound labelled “ZX Spectrum” is using an image of an Amstrad PCP 464)

HTML5: The New Flash

A new presentation from the wonderfully curmudgeonly Steven Pemberton, the Nosferatu of the web. Ignore the clickbaity title.

I don’t agree with everything he says here, but I strongly agree with his preference for declarative solutions over (or as well as) procedural ones. In short: don’t make JavaScript for something that could be handled in markup.

This part really, really resonated with me:

The web is the way now that we distribute information. We will need the web pages we create now to be readable in 100 years time, just as we can still read 100-year-old books.

Requiring a webpage to depend on a particular 100-year-old implementation of Javascript is not exactly evidence of future-thinking.

The Clock of the Long Now on Vimeo

A short feature on the 10,000 year clock.

New design thinking by Mikey Allan

Web technology is no longer limiting us or scaring us into “staying safe” moreover it’s enabling us to get inspired by our surroundings and go and create some truly amazing, Web-Specific design.

A Semiotic Approach to Designing Interfaces // Speaker Deck

This looks like a terrific presentation from Alla on iconography, semiotics, and communication.

A short note about web standards from your friends at Known

Ben and Erin are shipping experimental support for AMP in the latest version of Known, but Ben has some concerns about the balance of power tilting towards one major player, in this case Google:

Unfortunately, AMP redefines the HTML standard with some custom tags. That’s not great. It also requires that we load JavaScript from a specific source, which radically centralizes website content.

But it’s Google’s whitelist of approved ad providers that’s most concerning:

We’ve shipped support for AMP because we see potential here, and recognize that something should be done to improve the experience of loading independently-published content on the web. But attempting to bake certain businesses into a web standard is a malformed idea that is doomed to fail. If this is not corrected in future versions of the specification, we will withdraw support.

It’s the IMP

There are Inception-like layers of nostalgia here: firstly, this web series of web pages made by Matt are a throwback to an earlier era, and secondly, the story being told goes all the way back to the birth of the ARPAnet.

System shock — Medium

This is such a delightful story of a brilliant mistake—true typographic nerdery and nostalgia.

Read all the way through for a free gift.

The problem with our data-driven world by Alexis C. Madrigal

I really like this comparison between Waldsterben and the current situation with the web after years of pervasive tracking.

How To Organise Your Library

John expands on just one part of his superbly dense and entertaining dConstruct talk.

Occasional blog of Tobias Revell: Haunted Machines an Origin Story (Long)

Any sufficiently advanced hacking is indistinguishable from a haunting. In the same way that many Internet of Things objects are referred to as ‘enchanting’ or ‘magical,’ with an intervention, they can very quickly become haunted.

PDF: Designing For Deep Time: How Art History Is Used To Mark Nuclear Waste

Kelli Anderson’s thesis on the Human Interference Task Force project set up to mark nuclear waste sites for future generations (a project I’ve referenced in some of my talks).

Deep Time : A History of the Earth

This infographic offers a visual way to explore the various stages of the Earth’s history using a 12 hour clock analogy.

Meet Walter Pitts, the Homeless Genius Who Revolutionized Artificial Intelligence

The fascinating story of logic, learning, and the origins of electronic computing. Russell, Shannon, Turing, Wiener, Von Neumann …they’re all in there, woven around the tragic figure of Walter Pitts.

It is a sad and beautiful world.

Thanks to their work, there was a moment in history when neuroscience, psychiatry, computer science, mathematical logic, and artificial intelligence were all one thing, following an idea first glimpsed by Leibniz—that man, machine, number, and mind all use information as a universal currency. What appeared on the surface to be very different ingredients of the world—hunks of metal, lumps of gray matter, scratches of ink on a page—were profoundly interchangeable.

Web Design - The First 100 Years

A magnificent presentation from Maciej that begins by drawing parallels between the aviation industry in the 20th century and the technology industry in the 21st:

So despite appearances, despite the feeling that things are accelerating and changing faster than ever, I want to make the shocking prediction that the Internet of 2060 is going to look recognizably the same as the Internet today.

Unless we screw it up.

And I want to convince you that this is the best possible news for you as designers, and for us as people.

But if that sounds too upbeat for you…

Too much of what was created in the last fifty years is gone because no one took care to preserve it.

We have heroic efforts like the Internet Archive to preserve stuff, but that’s like burning down houses and then cheering on the fire department when it comes to save what’s left inside. It’s no way to run a culture. We take better care of scrap paper than we do of the early Internet, because at least we look at scrap paper before we throw it away.

And then there’s this gem:

We complained for years that browsers couldn’t do layout and javascript consistently. As soon as that got fixed, we got busy writing libraries that reimplemented the browser within itself, only slower.

It finishes with three differing visions of the web, one of them desirable, the other two …not so much. This presentation is a rallying cry for the web we want.

Let’s reclaim the web from technologists who tell us that the future they’ve imagined is inevitable, and that our role in it is as consumers.

The Internet That Was (and Still Could Be) - The Atlantic

A fantastic piece by David Weinberger on the changing uses of the internet—apparently in contradiction of the internet’s original architecture.

Some folks invented the Internet for some set of purposes. They gave it a name, pointed to some prototypical examples—sharing scientific papers and engaging in email about them—shaping the way the early adopters domesticated it.

But over time, the Internet escaped from its creators’ intentions. It became a way to communicate person-to-person via email and many-to-many via Usenet. The web came along and the prototypical example became home pages. Social networking came along and the prototype became Facebook.

Thriving in Unpredictability - TimKadlec.com

This is the way to approach building for the web:

I want to make as few of those assumptions as possible. Because every assumption I make introduces fragility. Every assumption introduces another way that my site can break.

It’s progressive enhancement, but like Stuart, Tim is no longer planning to use that term.

Where Do We Go From Here?, From the Notebook of Aaron Gustafson

The full text of Aaron’s magnificent closing keynote from Responsive Day Out.

Responsive day out 3: the final breakpoint | hiddedevries.nl

A fantastically-detailed write up of the whole day out. Each talk is described, and then the threads are tied together at the end. Great stuff!

As may have become clear from my notes above, Responsive Day Out 3 was a day full of variety. I had the feeling it could have easily been called Web Day Out, and I guess that makes sense, as responsive web design has naturally grown to be a pleonasm in the past few years.

Posts from June 19th 2015 | Blog | Decade City

Orde liveblogged every single talk from Responsive Day Out 3!

Paul Ford: What is Code? by Paul Ford

It seems grossly unfair to refer to this as an article. It’s a short book. It’s a very good short book; lucid and entertaining in equal measure. A very enjoyable read.

It is, unfortunately, surrounded by some distracting “enhancements” but perhaps you can use your cleaner-upper software of choice to route around their damage: Instapaper, Pocket, Readability, whatever works for you.

When Neil Armstrong and Edmund Hillary Took a Trip to the North Pole | Atlas Obscura

Hillary, legendary for being the first to scale Mount Everest with teammate Tenzing Norgay, was on board, and Armstrong was, too, saying he was curious to see what the North Pole looked like from ground level, as he’d only seen it from the moon. Astronaut problems.

Hamburger icon: How these three lines mystify most people - BBC News

The controversial hamburger icon goes mainstream with this story on the BBC News site.

It still amazes me that, despite clear data, many designers cling to the belief that the icon by itself is understandable (or that users will “figure it out eventually”). Why the aversion to having a label for the icon?

keyboard (div) ✿ dabblet.com

Here’s a really nifty use of the :checked behaviour pattern that Charlotte has been writing about—an interface for choosing a note from a piano keyboard. Under the hood, it’s a series of radio buttons and labels.

Future Library – Framtidsbiblioteket

Here’s a lovely project with an eye on the Long Now. Trees that were planted last year will be used to make paper to print an anthology in 2114.

Margaret Atwood is one of the contributors.

twoway.st - an independent explorer for the British Museum collection

I like this. It fills like a very webby way to explore a museum collection. Use any axis you like.

This is a sketch made quickly to explore what it means to navigate a museum catalogue made of over two million records. It’s about skipping around quickly, browsing the metadata as if you were wandering around the museum itself in Bloomsbury, or better yet, fossicking about unattended in the archives.

Hazards Of Prophecy by Arthur C. Clarke

A PDF of Clarke’s classic essay on the follies of prediction. From the 1972 collection The Futurists, edited by Alvin Toffler.

Sound Mirrors

Before there was radar, there were acoustic mirrors along the coast of England—parabolic structures designed to funnel the distant sound of approaching aircraft.

Alex Feyerke: Step Off This Hurtling Machine

I love this talk.

Alex takes a long-zoom look at the web and our technology stacks, from ’60s counterculture to start-up culture, touching on open source and the indie web along the way.

Codebar Brighton from Matchbox HQ - Matchbox Mobile

Jo writes about hosting Codebar Brighton. I share her enthusiasm—it feels like a great honour to be able to host such a great community event.

isolani - Web Standards: Flash’s slide into irrelevance

Mike runs through the history of Flash. Those who forget the history of the web are doomed to repeat it:

The struggle now seems to be turning to native apps versus non-native apps on the mobile platform. It is similar to Flash’s original battle ground: the argument that the Web technology stack is not suitable for building applications with a polished user-experience.

The Brighton Makerlab - where technology meets awesome! by Simon Riley — Kickstarter

Still a few days left to back this great project for Brighton:

Build, tinker, make and play! For anyone with imagination, The Brighton Makerlab lets ages 8 to 80 create cool stuff with technology.

The Web’s Grain by Frank Chimero

Superb. Absolutely superb.

A magnificent tour-de-force by Frank on the web’s edgelessness.

Read. Absorb. Read again. This is the essence of responsive web design, distilled.

Infovore » Joe Chip’s problem was never his door

Objects that talk are useful, but objects that tattle aren’t.

SpringForward - A celebration of women in digital and technology - March 2015, Brighton

There’s a whole bunch of great events happening in Brighton this March: Codebar, Curiosity Hub, She Codes Brighton, 300 Seconds, She Says Brighton, and Ladies that UX. Lots of these will be downstairs from Clearleft in Middle Street—very handy!

BBC - Future - The invisible network that keeps the world running

Tim Maughan reports on the same container ship trip that Dan W. is sending his postcards from.

I like the idea of there being an Apollo-sized project all around us, if you just know where to look.

First, towering above and over the ship, are the loading cranes. Vast structures mounted on huge, four-legged frames, they resemble the naked scaffolding of unbuilt skyscrapers, and trigger nostalgic reminders of Saturn V rocket launch towers from the 1960s.

Once in port at night I saw one suddenly fire into life next to the ship in a stroboscopic explosion of lights, before it tracked slowly above my high vantage point, bathing me in the orange glow of a dozen small halogen suns.

What the Web Said Yesterday

A profile of the wonderful Internet Archive.

No one believes any longer, if anyone ever did, that “if it’s on the Web it must be true,” but a lot of people do believe that if it’s on the Web it will stay on the Web. Chances are, though, that it actually won’t.

Brewster Kahle is my hero.

Kahle is a digital utopian attempting to stave off a digital dystopia. He views the Web as a giant library, and doesn’t think it ought to belong to a corporation, or that anyone should have to go through a portal owned by a corporation in order to read it. “We are building a library that is us,” he says, “and it is ours.”

The challenge for web designers in 2015 (or how to cheat at the future)

Designing primarily in a laptop web browser and testing with a mouse rather than fingers may come to look very out of date soon.

Some thoughts on “designing in the browser” | The Haystack

An important clarification from Stephen:

You don’t actually design in the browser

When I speak of designing in the browser, I mean creating browser-based design mockups/comps (I use the terms interchangeably), as opposed to static comps (like the PSDs we’re all used to). So it’s not the design. It’s the visualization of the design—the one you present to stakeholders.

Exactly!

Personally, I think it’s as crazy to start in the browser as it is to start with Photoshop—both have worldviews and constraints that will affect your thinking. Start with paper.

The Nor » Low Latency

Like an Enid Blyton adventure for the 21st century, James goes out into the country and explores the networks of microwave transmitters enabling high-frequency trading.

If you think that London’s skyscraper boom is impressive – the Shard, the Walkie-Talkie, the Cheesegrater, the Gherkin – go to Slough. It is not height that matters, but bandwidth.

Long Now Years: Five-digit Dates and 10K-compliance at Home — Blog of the Long Now

How to get Yosemite to display five-digit years. It’s a bit of a hack, but we’ve got another 7,985 years to figure out a better solution.

Egyptology can help us future-proof our culture – Grayson Clary – Aeon

A look at long-term cultural and linguistic preservation through the lens of Egyptology.

Taunus

I like the thinking behind this isomorphic JavaScript library: start with the (Node.js) server and then take over on the client side after the initial page load.

ST4I - Stuff That Talks To The Internet - workshop on Vimeo

Seb will be running this workshop again at the start of February—details here. I can’t recommend it highly enough—it’s so, so good!

Why James Cameron’s Aliens is the best movie about technology

Tim Carmody on James Cameron’s meisterwerk (and technology in sci-fi films in general).

The Nor » Living in the Electromagnetic Spectrum

James takes a tour through the English countryside, while venturing into areas of the electromagnetic spectrum that may as well be labelled “Private Property. No Trespassing. Keep Out.”

Alien | Typeset In The Future

Typeset In The Future is back with another cracking analysis. This time—following on from 2001 and Moon—we’ve got Alien.

In her final recorded message before hypersleep, Ripley notes that she is the sole survivor of the Nostromo. What she forgets to mention is that she has not once in the past two hours encountered any Eurostile Bold Extended.

Lunar Missions Ltd

We’re going back to the moon. With a robot. So we can take sublunarean samples.

You can help fund it on Kickstarter.

Thanks to Microsoft, Opera just got 100M potential new mobile browser users

I mentioned this a little while back, but it’s worth remembering just how many people are using Opera Mini …and how many more are about to join them.

Bring it on!

As we may understand: A constructionist approach to ‘behaviour change’ and the Internet of Things by Dan Lockton

An epic braindump by Dan, covering connected devices, product design, co-creation, DIY, and knopening stuff up. That’s right: knopening.

Knopen, a fairly obvious portmanteau of know and open, can be a verb (to knopen something) or an adjective (e.g. a knopen tool).

The Nor: A Paranoid Cartography

James walks the site of London’s old wall, documenting the instruments of London’s new wall.

He wrote about his experience in “All Cameras Are Police Cameras.” It is a history lesson, a present lesson, and a future lesson, all in one.

Overwhelmed by Code · An A List Apart Blog Post

Focus on what you want to learn; not what you think you should learn.

There is a lot of pressure out there: to learn new things, to spend all your time coding, to be the super developer. I now believe that to be impossible and unhealthy. It means you aren’t living a balanced life and it also means that you’re living under constant stress and pressure.

Spotlight – a pure JavaScript application for GOV.UK Performance

Progressive enhancement with isomorphic JavaScript, as practiced at Government Digital Services.

The boring front-end developer - Adam Silver, Front end developer, based in London

My name is Jeremy and I am a boring front-end developer.

Blogging Known Style

Companies go out of business, get bought and change policies, so what if you had one place to originate all of your content then publish it out to those great social services? And hey, why not pull comments from those services back to your original post?

That’s the idea behind Indie Web Camp: have your own website be the canonical source of what your publish. But right now, getting all of the moving parts up and running requires a fair dollop of tech-savviness. That’s where Known comes in:

It’s similar to the WordPress model: you can create a blog on their servers, or you can download the software and host it on your own.

This post is a good run-down of what’s working well with Known, and what needs more work.

The Hummingbird Effect — How We Got to Now

How the printing press led to the microscope, and chlorination transformed women’s fashion—Steven Johnson channels James Burke.

Y Combinator and the negative externalities of Hacker News | Danilo Campos

When I wrote about Reddit and Hacker News, criticising their lack of moderation, civility, and basic decency, many people (invariably men) responded in defence of Reddit. Nobody defended Hacker News. Nobody.

Oh, and all of you people (men) defending Reddit? Here’s your party line …I find it abhorrent.

Tech’s tunnel vision (Phil Gyford’s website)

I really like Phil’s braindump of conference ideas. Frankly, many of these ideas work just as well as watchwords for building on the web:

  • Different models for start-ups. Co-operatives. Employee ownership. Normal, slowly-growing, profit-making businesses.
  • Technology for people who don’t live in the first world. (There’s a lot of them and they have a lot of technology, but most of us know nothing about it.)
  • Websites that make the whole Web better.
  • New services that work fine on technology that’s been around for years.
  • Services designed for people who have little money.
  • Services designed for people who aren’t fully able.
  • Models for keeping services running over the long-term. (What happens when your company closes, or to your personal projects when you die?)

Against Sharing | Jacobin

But under the guise of innovation and progress, companies are stripping away worker protections, pushing down wages, and flouting government regulations. At its core, the sharing economy is a scheme to shift risk from companies to workers, discourage labor organizing, and ensure that capitalists can reap huge profits with low fixed costs.

There’s nothing innovative or new about this business model. Uber is just capitalism, in its most naked form.

Hypertext as an agent of change | A Working Library

The text of Mandy’s astounding dConstruct talk.

Marvellous stuff!

Digital Amnesia - YouTube

A documentary on our digital dark age. Remember this the next time someone trots out the tired old lie that “the internet never forgets.”

If we lose the past, we will live in an Orwellian world of the perpetual present, where anybody that controls what’s currently being put out there will be able to say what is true and what is not. This is a dreadful world. We don’t want to live in this world. —Brewster Kahle

It’s a terrible indictment of where our priorities were for the last 20 years that we depend essentially on children and maniacs to save our history of this sort. —Jason Scott

Valley of the Meatpuppets | superflux

Slides and transcript from Anab’s terrific dConstruct talk.

Seeing Like a Network — The Message — Medium

How computers work:

One day, a man name Alan Turing found a magic lamp, and rubbed it. Out popped a genie, and Turing wished for infinite wishes. Then we killed him for being gay, but we still have the wishes.

Then we networked computers together:

The network is ultimately not doing a favor for those in power, even if they think they’ve mastered it for now. It increases their power a bit, it increases the power of individuals immeasurably. We just have to learn to live in the age of networks.

We are all nodes in many networks. This is a beautiful description of how one of those networks operates.

Web Archeology - daverupert.com

A bit of web history reacted by Paravel: the Microsoft homepage from 1994. View source to see some ooooold-school markup.

Ah, memories!

Drip, Drop, Groundswell

Cole Peters calls upon designers and developers to realise the power they have to shape the modern world and act accordingly.

It is in those of us who work in tech and on the web that digital privacy may find its greatest chance for survival. As labourers in one of the most pivotal industries of our times, we possess the knowledge and skills required to create tools and ecosystems that defend our privacy and liberties.

I don’t disagree, but I think it’s also important to recognise how much power is in the hands of non-designers and non-developers: journalists, politicians, voters …everyone has a choice to make.

How we make RWD sites load fast as heck

Scott shares the code that Filament Group are using to determine which style declarations are critical (and can be inlined) and which are non-critical (and can be loaded asynchronously). It makes quite a difference in perceived performance.

By the way, I really, really like the terminology of “critical” and “non-critical” CSS, rather than “above the fold” and “below the fold” CSS.

Twelve Tomorrows | MIT Technology Review

This year’s collection of twelve sci-fi stories from Technology Review features three dConstruct speakers: Lauren Beukes, Cory Doctorow, and Warren Ellis.

Panorama Fail

The image-stitching algorithm is trying its best.

Improving Reality 2014 — Visibility Is A Trap

Lighthouse are putting on their Improving Reality conference again this year. It’s the day before dConstruct. Come to both!

The Eccentric Genius Whose Time May Have Finally Come (Again) - Doug Hill - The Atlantic

A profile of Norbert Wiener, and how his star was eclipsed by Claude Shannon.

Pinboard Turns Five (Pinboard Blog)

On the fifth anniversary of Pinboard, Maciej reflects on working on long-term projects:

Avoiding burnout is difficult to write about, because the basic premise is obnoxious. Burnout is a rich man’s game. Rice farmers don’t get burned out and spend long afternoons thinking about whether to switch to sorghum.

The good news is, as you get older, you gain perspective. Perspective helps alleviate burnout.

The bad news is, you gain perspective by having incredibly shitty things happen to you and the people you love. Nature has made it so that perspective is only delivered in bulk quantities. A railcar of perspective arrives and dumps itself on your lawn when all you needed was a microgram.

Valley of the Meatpuppets | superflux

The transcript of Anab Jain’s talk from the FutureEverything Festival.

Marginalia | Parallel Transport

A brilliant idea (and implementation) from Kartik. By combing webmentions and fragmentions, it’s possible to allow a kind of distributed marginalia: you post a comment on your site about a specific passage in a post on my site and a smattering of CSS and JavaScript can display it in the right context.

The Man Who Turned Paper Into Pixels on Vimeo

A short film about Claude Shannon and Information Theory — not exactly as in-depth as James Gleick’s The Information, but it does a nice job of encapsulating the fundamental idea.

Signs from the near future

We better get used to them…

Thomson Reuters Throws Its Weight Behind Science Hack Day

This is quite exciting: the Endnote project is sponsoring Science Hack Day globally—not just an individual event.

How We Got To Now with Steven Johnson - YouTube

Steven Johnson’s new television series will be shown on BBC in a few months time. Looks like it’s going to be good Burkian fun.

Known: taking a big bet on the #indieweb

When I’ve been banging on at conferences about digital preservation, personal publishing and the indie web, I’ve been at pains to point out that there are huge opportunities here for startups looking to build valet services to help people publish on their own domain.

Ben and Erin at Known are doing just that, with some backing from KQED, PRX and the Knight Foundation instead of the usual short-sighted Silicon Valley venture capitalism.

One of the jobs of a startup is to look at where the world is going, extrapolating from current trends and domain knowledge, and meet a future need with a product at exactly the right time. We think the time is right for an independent web that is owned by content creators and readers alike.

Archeology, Anthropology, and Interstellar Communication edited by Douglas A. Vakoch

A free PDF download from NASA on all things SETI, specifically the challenges of interspecies interstellar communication.

It’s OK not to use tools by Jonas Downey of Basecamp

Today, a basic HTML/CSS site seems almost passé. But why? Is it because our new tools are so significantly better, or because we’ve gone overboard complicating simple things?

He’s right, y’know.

Frank Chimero – Only Openings

I guess it goes without saying at this point, but this piece from Frank is beautiful and thought-provoking.

This part in particular touched on some things I’ve been thinking about lately:

Design’s golden calf is simplicity. Speaking as someone who sees, makes, and uses design each and every day, I am tired of simple things. Simple things are weak. They are limited. They are boring. What I truly want is clarity. Give me clear and evident things over simple things. Make me things that presume and honor my intelligence. Shun seamlessness. It is another false token. Make me things that are full of seams, because if you give me a seam and I pull the thread, I get to see how the whole world is stitched together. Give me some credit. Show me you trust me.

Where Time Comes From on Vimeo

A profile of Demetrios Matsakis, keeper of time at U.S. Naval Observatory, America’s equivalent to Greenwich in its importance for timekeeping in the modern world.

How America’s Leading Science Fiction Authors Are Shaping Your Future

Eileen Gunn writes in the Smithsonian magazine on the influence of science fiction.

Science fiction, at its best, engenders the sort of flexible thinking that not only inspires us, but compels us to consider the myriad potential consequences of our actions.

James Bridle — Where You Are

The GPS system is a monumental network that provides a permanent “YouAreHere” sign hanging in the sky, its signal a constant, synchronised timecode.

Wearables versus there-ables.

Some interesting thoughts that follow on nicely from Scott Jenson’s ideas around just-in-time interactions:

What if the technology was actually already in the room when we got there? Maybe that’s the kind of Internet-of-things that will be more sustainable and will win long-term.

Dr. Easy on Vimeo

I finally got around to reading Red Men by Matthew De Abaitua recently. It’s like Nick Harkaway crossed with Jeff Noon.

Here’s hoping that this short film will be developed into a full-length feature.

Readmill Epilogue - Readmill

If your startup gets acquired and shut down by a larger company, this is the way to announce it—no “we’re excited to announce”; no “incredible journey”. Instead there’s an apology and regret (which is exactly what your users will be feeling).

1995 Vannevar Bush symposium: closing Panel

So Doug Engelbart, Alan Kay, Ted Nelson, and Tim Berners-Lee walk into a panel…

Spotlight – a pure JavaScript application for GOV.UK Performance | Technology at GDS

A nice tale of progressive enhancement from gov.uk, talking about how they made their analytics dashboards (which are public, by the way) using JavaScript on the server and on the client.

I believe this is what the kids are calling isomorphic JavaScript.

Our Comrade The Electron

This is a wonderful piece by Maciej—a magnificent historical narrative that leads to a thunderous rant. Superb!

Node School in Brighton

Tom is running a Node School at 68 Middle Street on the evening of March 27th. I plan to attend and finally wrap my head around all this Node stuff.

Kyle Bean - Whistleblower

If you picked up the Guardian this weekend, you’ll have seen some brilliant work by Kyle on the cover (and inside) the magazine section.

kimono : Turn websites into structured APIs from your browser in seconds

This tool for building ScrAPIs is an interesting development—the current trend for not providing a simple API (or even a simple RSS feed) is being interpreted as damage and routed around.

Dinosaurs! WTF?

A blog covering the conservative dinosaur readiness movement.

Poll Results: “Sites” vs “Apps” | CSS-Tricks

Some excellent research from Chris, canvassing opinions on whether there’s a difference between web “apps” and web “sites”. His conclusion:

Almost none of the points above ring true for me. All I see are exceptions and gray area.

If nothing else, the fact that none of the proposed distinctions agree with one another show how pointless the phrase “web app” is—if people have completely differing ideas on what a phrase means, it is completely useless in furthering discussion …the very definition of a buzzword.

This leads me to think perhaps the “web app” moniker (certainly the newer of the two) is simply just a fashionable term. We like the sound of it, so we use it, regardless if it truly means anything.

But all of this is, I think, missing the more important point: why? Why would you want to separate the cornucopia of the web into two simplistic buckets? What purpose does it serve? That’s the question that really needs be answered.

If we could pin down a super accurate definition that we agreed on, even then it might not be particularly useful. And since we can’t, I argue it’s even less useful.

The most accurate (and damning) definition of a “web app” that I’ve heard so far is: a web site that requires JavaScript to work.

Anatomy of a failed rendition | booktwo.org

A superb bit of sleuthing by James:

From London to the Mediterranean, to Malta and back again, over multiple countries and jurisdictions, through airspace and legal space. The contortions of G-WIRG’s flight path mirror the ethical labyrinth the British Government finds itself in when, against all better judgements, it insists on punishing individuals as an example to others, using every weasel justification in its well-funded legal war chest. Using a combination of dirty laws and private technologies to transform and transmit people from one jurisidiction, one legal condition and category, to another: this is the meaning of the verb “to render”.

Jeremy Keith – The Power Of Simplicity – border:none

This is the talk I gave at the border:none event in Nuremberg last month. I really enjoyed it. This was a chance to gather together some thoughts I’ve been mulling over for a while about how we approach front-end development today …and tomorrow.

Warning: it does get quite ranty towards the end.

Also: it is only now that the video is released that I see I spent the entire talk looking like a dork with a loop of wire sticking out of the back of my head.

Star Axis is a profound meditation on the sky – Ross Andersen – Aeon

A beautiful exploration of the Star Axis sculpture—an artwork of the Long Now.

The ancients had pyramids to tame the sky’s mystery. We have Star Axis, a masterpiece forty years in the making.

Steve & Steve: a graphic novel by Patrick Sean Farley

This is absolutely delightful, nicely weird, and thoroughly entertaining.

STET

From the lovely people behind Editorially comes STET:

A Writers’ Journal on Culture & Technology

Unfashionably profitable

Rachel talks about some of the old-fashioned technologies and business practices driving Perch.

This reminds of a talk by Marco Arment at Webstock a few years back when he described the advantages of not using cutting-edge technologies: most of the time, “boring” well-established technologies are simply more stable.

Robert Cailliau’s world wide web on Dazed Digital

From CERN to singularity - the digital pioneer and cofounder of the WWW on 20 years of webscapades.

The Omega Glory

Michael Chabon muses on The Future, prompted by the Clock of the Long Now.

Immaterials, dConstruct and Culture Ships on Vimeo

Iain M.Banks and dConstruct, together at last.

dConstruct: Artists grapple with the culture of technology surveillance

Honor’s piece for The Guardian on this year’s dConstruct.

Three themes from dConstruct 2013

A smart and thoughtful write-up of dConstruct from Lee, pulling together three emergent themes:

  1. how we interact with machines and each other,
  2. how we co-evolve with machines, and
  3. making the invisible visible.

A great, thought-provoking day that proved, once again, that there are many brilliant, generous minds working in or around the future of technology and human experience today.

dConstruct 2013: “It’s the Future. Take it.” | matt.me63.com - Matt Edgar

This is a terrific write up of this year’s dConstruct, tying together all the emergent themes.

Omni Reboot | THE LANDLINE

Omni returns with a Bruce Sterling short story that marries alternative history and satire with a dash of digital preservation.

Go ahead, just wait a year, or two years, or maybe five years. Then try to find this, later. There will be no sign of this website, because it’s just made of pixels. No remains of the machine that you read it with, either.

Inspiring Tech Quotes

Some of the more idiotic, harmful, stupid and nasty things said by the thought leaders of Silicon Valley.

The apparent difficulty of living in my head, freelancing, working for large organisations and then descending in to paranoia.

I have a lot of admiration for Reverend Dan Catt.

I don’t want to be in a position where I say “Hey, I’m working at Google, no no, don’t worry, the good bit of Google”, because goodness knows I did enough of that at Yahoo.

Edible Geography

I’m not sure how I managed to miss this site up until now, but it’s right up my alley: equal parts urban planning, ethnography, and food science.

NSA-Proof Your Email! Consider your Man Card Re-Issued. Never be Afraid Again.

We shouldn’t be protecting ourselves. We should be protecting each other.

When politicians get the internet wrong, the internet can be ruthless by Caroline Criado-Perez

Oh, dear. An otherwise perfectly well-reasoned article makes this claim:

But the internet is peculiarly adapted to deftly pricking pomposity. This is partly because nothing dies online, meaning your past indiscretions are never yesterday’s news, wrapped round the proverbial fish and chips.

Bollocks. Show me the data to back up this claim.

The insidious truism that “the internet never forgets” is extremely harmful. The true problem is the opposite: the internet forgets all the time.

Geocities, Pownce, Posterous, Vox, and thousands more sites are very much yesterday’s news, wrapped round the proverbial fish and chips.

The Killing Machines by Mark Bowden in The Atlantic

How to think about drones—an in-depth and fairly balanced article by Mark Bowden on drone strikes and the politics behind them.

In the long run, careful adherence to the law matters more than eliminating another bad actor. Greater prudence and transparency are not just morally and legally essential, they are in our long-term interest, because the strikes themselves feed the anti-drone narrative, and inspire the kind of random, small-scale terror attacks that are bin Laden’s despicable legacy.

Life Inside Brewster’s Magnificent Contraption « ASCII by Jason Scott

A beauty of a post by Jason giving you even more reasons to donate to Archive.org.

Seriously. Do it now. It would mean a lot to me.

Related: I’m going to be in San Francisco next week and by hook or by crook, I plan to visit the Internet Archive’s HQ.

Technical Machine

This looks rather exciting: Tessel is Rasperry Pi-like piece of hardware, but running JavaScript (Node.js) by default.

Anton Peck Illustration - Gather eBook

You can download the PDF of Anton’s graphic novel Gather for free.

The perils at Great Falls - Washington Post

On the one hand, this is yet another Snowfall clone. On the other hand, the fact that it’s responsive is impressive.

Federated uncertainty

Stuart nails it: the real problem with delegating identity is not what some new app will do with your identity details, it’s what the identity provider—Twitter, Google, Facebook—will do with the knowledge that you’re now using some new app.

This is why I want to use my own website as my identity provider.

Kids can’t use computers… and this is why it should worry you - Coding 2 Learn

This is a really well-written and worrying piece that pokes at that oft-cited truism about kids today being “digital natives”:

The parents seem to have some vague concept that spending hours each evening on Facebook and YouTube will impart, by some sort of cybernetic osmosis, a knowledge of PHP, HTML, JavaScript and Haskell.

The causes of this lack of digital literacy can be traced back to school:

We’ve mirrored corporate networks, preventing kids and teachers access to system settings, the command line and requiring admin rights to do almost anything. They’re sitting at a general purpose computer without the ability to do any general purpose computing.

Also, this article has the best “TL;DR” description ever.

The Ecuadorian Library by Bruce Sterling

A good ol’ fashioned rant.

stevenberlinjohnson.com: How We Got To Now

This sounds like it’s a going to be a good: a new TV series by Steven Johnson on the history of technology and innovation. Sounds very Burkian, which is a very good thing.

We Need More Communism by Scott Jenson

A terrific lighting talk by Scott on the need to think bigger. The solution to long-term issues is rarely “start a company”—we need to think more about creating a shared infrastructure …just like the internet.

LukeW | An Event Apart: The Long Web

Luke’s notes from my talk at An Event Apart DC.

Sketchnotes: The Long Web

Jason Garber took some nicely-hyperlinked notes during my presentation at An Event Apart DC.

Not Real Programming by John Allsopp

A terrific long-zoom look at web technologies, pointing out that the snobbishness towards declarative languages is a classic example of missing out on the disruptive power of truly innovative ideas …much like the initial dismissive attitude towards the web itself.

100,000 Stars

A gorgeous interactive visualisation of our local galactic neighbourhood.

The Hut Where the Internet Began by Alexis C. Madrigal in The Atlantic

A wonderful article looking at the influence that Vannevar Bush’s seminal article As We May Think had on the young Douglas Engelbart.

B612 Foundation

Defending Earth against asteroids, just like the Spaceguard organisation described in Rendezvous With Rama.

Detect. Deflect. Defend.

Improving Reality 2013

The line-up for this year’s Improving Reality conference looks great (as always).

It’s the day before dConstruct so why not come on down to Brighton a day early and double your fun?

Is Google dumping open standards for open wallets?

Google’s track record is not looking good. There seems to be a modus operandi of bait-and-switch: start with open technologies (XMPP, CalDav, RSS) and then once they’ve amassed a big enough user base, ditch the standards.

A Few Notes on the Culture by Iain M Banks

I’ve linked to this before, but with the death of Iain M Banks it’s worth re-reading this fascinating insight into The Culture, one of science fictions’s few realistic utopias.

The brief mention here of The Culture’s attitude to death is apt:

Philosophy, again; death is regarded as part of life, and nothing, including the universe, lasts forever. It is seen as bad manners to try and pretend that death is somehow not natural; instead death is seen as giving shape to life.

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 New Aesthetic: James Bridle’s Drones and Our Invisible, Networked World in Vanity Fair

James gets profiled in Vanity Fair …which is, frankly, kind of weird.

It’s also so bizarre to read about his SXSW New Aesthetic panel as being such a pivotal moment: there weren’t that many of us in the room.

Other flexible media: balloons and tattoos

Vasilis considers the inherent flexibility and unknowability of web design.

I tried to come up with other fields that need to design things for a flexible canvas, in the hope of finding inspiration there. The only media types I could come up with was the art of balloon printing and the art of tattooing.

James Somers – Web developer money

A well-written piece on the nature of work and value on the web, particularly in the start-up economy.

SpaceWarps

Zooniverse have done it again. Now you can help in the hunt for sources of gravitational lensing.

It’s informative. It’s fun. It has genuine scientific value.

A Woman’s Place — Everything Old is New Again — Medium

In a piece for Medium commissioned by Matter, Jon Norris describes a little-known aspect of the UK’s information technology history:

Gender equality is still a major issue in the technology industry, but 50 years ago one British company was blazing trails.

A Stormy Sky of Cranky Clouds by Scott Jenson

Scott points out a really big problem with the current state of the “internet of things”: everyone is inventing their own proprietary walled-garden infrastructure instead of getting together to collaborate on standards.

The single biggest fallacy I want to blow up is this utopian idea that there is this SINGLE thing called ‘The Cloud’. Each company today reinvents their own cloud. The Cloud as a concept is dead and has been for years: we are living within a stormy sky of cranky clouds, all trying to pretend the others don’t exist.

The open internet and the web

A history lesson from Vint Cerf. I can’t help but picture him as The Architect in The Matrix Reloaded.

When Tim Berners-Lee invented and released the World Wide Web (WWW) design in late 1991, he found an open and receptive internet in operation onto which the WWW could be placed. The WWW design, like the design of the internet, was very open and encouraged a growing cadre of self-taught webmasters to develop content and applications.

A Digital Tomorrow on Vimeo

A design fiction video depicting technology that helps and hinders in equal measure.

The Secure Transport of Light on booktwo.org

A beautiful piece by James on the history of light as a material for communication …and its political overtones in today’s world.

What is light when it is information rather than illumination? What is it when it is not perceived by the human eye? Deep beneath the streets and oceans, what is illuminated by the machines, and how are we changed by this illumination?

Meet the Web’s Operating System: HTTP

A lovely description by Paul Ford of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol.

That simple handshake is the firmament upon which we have built trillion-dollar cathedrals and bazaars, the base upon which we construct other protocols and networks.

Embracing the Medium

A lovely piece of writing from Richard on the nature of the web.

First public use of what Became Proxima Nova by Mark Simonson

Who knew? The reissue of the classic thirteen-part Star Wars radio series was the first appearance of a proto-Proxima Nova.

The canonical smart city: A pastiche by Adam Greenfield’s Speedbird

Sorta sci-fi from Adam.

Consider this a shooting script for one of those concept videos so beloved of the big technology vendors.

Our Incredible Journey

A collection of those appalling doublespeek announcements that sites and services give when they get acquired. You know the ones: they begin with “We’re excited to announce…” and end with people’s data being flushed down the toilet.

Google Keep? It’ll probably be with us until March 2017 - on average

Charles Arthur analyses the data from Google’s woeful history of shutting down its services.

So if you want to know when Google Keep, opened for business on 21 March 2013, will probably shut - again, assuming Google decides it’s just not working - then, the mean suggests the answer is: 18 March 2017. That’s about long enough for you to cram lots of information that you might rely on into it; and also long enough for Google to discover that, well, people aren’t using it to the extent that it hoped.

Why Americans Are the Weirdest People in the World

A truly fascinating and well-written article on how changes are afoot in the worlds of psychology, economics, and just about any other field that has performed tests on American participants and extrapolated the results into universal traits.

Given the data, they concluded that social scientists could not possibly have picked a worse population from which to draw broad generalizations. Researchers had been doing the equivalent of studying penguins while believing that they were learning insights applicable to all birds.

Did we miss your tweet from earlier?

In case you missed it earlier…

Notes on remixing Noon, generative text and Markov chains

Jeff Noon and Markov chains—a heavenly match by Dan.

Notes from Responsive Conf — Phunky Venom

Some bullet points from the Responsive Day Out to keep you going until the audio and video is ready.

Creating a physical internet to save money and energy on logistics

I remember a talk and discussion at SxSW a few years back about trying to improve the efficiency of trade networks by making them more web-like: there are ships full of empty cargo containers, simply because companies insist on using the container with their logo on it. I really, really like the idea of applying the principles of packet-switching to physical networks.

But here’s the hard part:

The technology is not a problem. We could do it all in 10 years. It’s the business models and the mental models in people’s minds.

Write The Future by Tom Hunter — Kickstarter

Now this looks like my kind of event:

A new micro-conference on science, technology, communication and fiction, organised by the Arthur C. Clarke Award.

Knobfeel - Feels good man!

Reviews based entirely on the feel of the knob.

Ladies in Tech

A great new site from Jenn and Yesenia: celebrating and supporting female speakers in technology.

Execution in the Kingdom of Nouns by Steve Yegge

A classic of writing on the fundamental differences between programming languages.

Interview with Lauren Beukes about Shining Girls

Lauren talks about The Shining Girls and the tools she uses to write with.

The Panasonic Toughpad Press Conference - LOOK, ROBOT

Now this is what I call tech reporting.

The women leave the stage, wet computer in hand, and a new man takes the stage. He plays a schmaltzy video where Portuguese children teach adults to use Windows 8 accompanied by a hyperloud xylophone soundtrack that slices through my hangover like cheesewire though lukewarm gouda.

Out of Eden — A Walk Through Time

I like this idea of slow journalism: taking seven years to tell a story.

Sparkicons and the humble hyperlink by Mark Boulton

I really like Mark’s idea of standardised “sparkicons” …for a while there, reading this, I was worried he was going to propose something like Snap Preview. shudder

Medaler.com

I know have a visualisation of my public data in the form of 3D-printed snowflake, thanks to Medaler.

A New Canon | Journal | The Personal Disquiet of Mark Boulton

An excerpt from Mark’s forthcoming book, which promises to be magnificent.

The Subcompact Publishing Reader - Readlists

A nice Readlist based on that excellent article by Craig on digital publishing:

This reader is made up of Craigmod’s essay “Subcompact Publishing” and essays linked to in the footnotes.

When the Nerds Go Marching In - Alexis C. Madrigal - The Atlantic

The fascinating story of how a dream team of geeks helped Obama to victory. Personally, I think it’s all about the facial hair. I mean, how could they lose with Trammell’s beard to guide them?

Was the Internet just an accident? | Scott Jenson

Man, I just love Scott Jenson.

Our brains have collectively gone startup-crazy, seeing the world through stock option colored glasses, assuming that if there is no money, there is clearly no value. This is madness. I’m so desperately worried that the internet will turn out to be a happy accident.

Turning his focus on “the internet of things” he makes the very good point that what we need isn’t one company or one proprietary service; we need an ecosystem of open standards that will enable companies to build services.

We all have to appreciate how we need a deep, open solution to solve this problem. If we don’t understand, demand even, that hardware devices need to be just as discoverable an open as web servers are today, we’ll never see the internet of things come to pass.

isolani - Web Standards: Web App Mistakes: Condemned to repeat

Some great thoughts from Mike Davies about the strengths of the web, prompted by some of the more extreme comments made by James Pearce at Full Frontal last week.

I should point out that James was being deliberately provocative in order to foment thought and discussion and, judging from this blog post, he succeeded.

The Web’s independence from the hardware and software platform people use is a feature. It’s better than cross-platform frameworks which are constantly criticised for not producing exact native-feeling apps on the multitude of platforms they run on. The Web is above that pettiness.

Device Fatigue | Brad Frost Web

I know how Brad feels. I find it hard to muster any enthusiasm for any specific new device these days. But that’s okay. It’s more important to step back and see the trends and directions instead of getting caught up in the specifics of this particular phone or that particular tablet.

My remedy for device fatigue has been to take a step back and let my eyes go unfocused. Much like a Magic Eye, I can then see the hidden pictures behind the stippled noise that is the device landscape. This remedy helps me cope, gets me to stop caring about things that don’t really matter, and gets me to care about the broader trends the Magic Eye unveils.

New Rule: Every Desktop Design Has To Go Finger-Friendly (Global Moxie)

Josh takes an-depth look at the navigation design implications of touch/keyboard hybrid devices, coming to a similar conclusion as Luke and Jason:

Unfortunately, the top-of-screen navigation and menus of traditional desktop layouts are outright hostile to hybrid ergonomics. Tried-and-true desktop conventions have to change to make room for fingers and thumbs.

Want to test for a hybrid device? Tough luck. Instead, argues Josh, the best you can do is assume that any device visiting your site could be touch-enabled.

❍ IcoMoon

This is a great free service for generating small subsetted icon fonts. Launch the app and have a play around — you can choose from the icons provided or you can import your own SVG shapes.

Nice touch: you can get the resulting font (mapped to your choice of unicode characters) base-64 encoded for your stylesheet.

An alternate universe – Marco.org

There is an elephant in the Microsoft store.

NodeCopter Brighton

Let’s spend the day after Full Frontal programming flying robots with JavaScript. Clearleft is sponsoring a drone; want to play with it?

The best interface is no interface | Cooper Journal

Interaction dissolving into the environment.

Data Visualization Reinterpreted by VISUALIZED on Vimeo

Peter Saville talks about the enduring appeal of his cover for Unknown Pleasures.

I like to think of all the variations and mashups as not just tributes to Joy Division, but tributes to Jocelyn Bell Burnell too.

Stories from the New Aesthetic : Joanne Mcneil

A lovely piece from Joanne on storytelling, identity and the internet.

Notfound.org

This wouldn’t be appropriate for every site but I still think it could be a damned fine use of otherwise-neglected 404 pages: including information about missing children.

Brian Eno & Peter Chilvers at The Apple Store, Regent Street

Well, this is quite something. Matt will be interviewing the creators of Bloom in London this Friday. You might have heard of that Eno chap.

d.construct 2012 - a set on Flickr

Eva-Lotta’s sketchnotes from this year’s dConstruct.

Citrix Systems » Most Americans Confused By Cloud Computing According to National Survey

See‽ See‽

The cloud is not only a lie, it’s a lie that everyone pretends to understand.

When asked what “the cloud” is, a majority responded it’s either an actual cloud (specifically a “fluffy white thing”), the sky or something related to the weather (29 percent).

Kosmograd: The death of Kosmograd

The Ballardian beauty of a dying Baikonour.

Mobile Navigation Icons | TimKadlec.com

Tim shows how to make a scalable three-line navicon in CSS.

Fontello - easy iconic fonts composer

A nifty service for creating a custom font with just the icons you need.

This is now!

A thoroughly addictive use of the Instagram API (along with Node.js and Socket.io): see a montage of images being taken in a city right now.

3D-Printed “Magic Arms” - YouTube

3D printing an exoskeleton for a child with arthrogryposis — technology can be so fricking awesome!

The fetishization of the offline, and a new definition of real

A good recap of the recent online/offline/does-it-really-matter discussion …although it does lend a bit too much credence to the pronouncements of that king of trolls, Nicholas Carr.

HP “On That Cloud Thing That Everyone Else Is Talking About” | The Onion - America’s Finest News Source | Onion News Network

Pitch-perfect parody from The Onion:

HP announced they’re making a new push into cloud computing and that they totally know what that is.

In related news, I’ve ordered my “the cloud is a lie” T-shirt from James.

Client/Agency Engagement is F*cked, Waterfall UX Design is a Symptom | disambiguity

Leisa nails it. The real stumbling block with trying to change the waterfall-esque nature of agency work (of which Clearleft has certainly been guilty) can be summed up in two words: sign off.

And from a client’s perspective, this emphasis on sign-off is completely understandable.

It takes a special kind of client to take the risk and develop the level of trust and integration required to work the way that Mr Popoff-Walker any many, many other inhabitants of agency world would like to work.

As We May Think - The Atlantic

Vannevar Bush’s original 1945 motherlode of hypertext.

The Coming Technological Singularity

Vernor Vinge’s original 1993 motherlode of the singularity.

The Myth of Cyberspace – The New Inquiry

There is a there there after all.

The IRL Fetish – The New Inquiry

The backlash against the backlash against connectivity.

Welcome to the Future Nauseous

I, for one, welcome our Manufactured Normalcy Field overlords.

[this is aaronland] “an index of reality”

Aaron should definitely skyblog more often if this is the result.

Vint Cerf: We Knew What We Were Unleashing on the World | Wired Business | Wired.com

I could listen to Vint Cerf all day.

I think that it’s perfectly reasonable to have packets raining down from satellites, IP packets just literally raining down from satellites and being picked up by hundreds, if not millions, of receivers at the same time.

Rosetta on Vimeo

A beautiful short film about The Long Now Foundation’s Rosetta Project.

Symbolset

It’s really good to see more providers of icon font sets. These look very nicely designed indeed.

NoisePNG - Generate noisy PNG-images with alpha-transparency

If you’re adding some noise texture to your backgrounds, this little service might be handy. I usually base-64 encode these kinds of background images: it would be nice to see that added as an option here.

Digital archivists: technological custodians of human history | Ars Technica

An introduction to the important work of digital archivists:

Much like the family member that collects, organizes, and identifies old family photos to preserve one’s heritage, digital archivists seek to do the same for all mankind.

The Farmer & Farmer Review. Modern Medicine by Jonathan Harris

This is very, very good. It gets a little unhinged towards the end but Jonathan Harris’s initial comparisons of software with medicine are spot-on.

Internet! - Imgur

The Old Aesthetic.

GATHER. A Graphic Novel by Anton Peck — Kickstarter

Anton is a fantastic artist. Therefore, this graphic novel will be fantastic. Therefore, you should back the hell out of it.

timoni.org - I love the internet.

This is a beautifully heartfelt post from Timoni:

Every day, I feel things because of the internet, and that’s amazing. Humans have been using abstracted communication for thousands of years, but it’s never been so instantaneous, never so capable of bringing folks of completely different backgrounds together in conversation. This is a huge step. Good job us.

The Jig Is Up: Time to Get Past Facebook and Invent a New Future - Alexis Madrigal - Technology - The Atlantic

An excellent longish-zoom article by Alexis Madrigal with an eerily accurate summation of the current state of the web. Although I think that a lack of any fundamentally new paradigms could be seen as a sign of stabilisation as much as stagnation.

The inadmissible assumptions - Charlie’s Diary

Yes! Charles Stross speaks the unspeakable: that advertising is fundamentally “wrong”.

He’s right, y’know.

An Essay on the New Aesthetic | Beyond The Beyond | Wired.com

Bruce Sterling writes about the New Aesthetic in an article that’s half manifesto and half critique.

Grab a cup of tea or hit your “read it later” bookmarklet of choice for this one—it’s a lengthy but worthwhile read.

» 28 March 2012, baked by Cennydd Bowles @ The Pastry Box Project

I like Cennydd’s thoughts on the fundamental difference between skill and process:

Skilled people without a process will always find a way to get things done. Skill begets process. But process doesn’t beget skill.

This time, more than any other time

A cautionary tale from Stuart. We, the makers of modern technology, are letting people down. Badly.

We’re in this to help users, remember: not just the ones who think as we do, but the ones who rely on us to build things for them because they don’t know what they’re doing. If your response is honestly “well, he should have spent more on a phone to get something better”, then I’m exceedingly disillusioned by you.

ESPI at work: The power of Keynote| Edenspiekermann

Using Keynote as a web design tool? Why not? It makes as much sense as Photoshop or Fireworks, perhaps more.

» Long Bets Bet – How Durable Are URLs? - Blog of the Long Now

The Long Now blog is featuring the bet between myself and Matt on URL longevity. Just being mentioned on that site gives me a warm glow.

Marginalized

Notes in manuscripts and colophons made by medieval scribes and copyists …in 140 characters or fewer.

A Whole Lotta Nothing: My Webstock Talk: Lessons from a 40 year old (now with transcript)

Matt has transcribed the notes from his excellent Webstock talk. I highly recommend giving this a read.

We need a standard show navigation icon for responsive web design | Stuff & Nonsense

Andy documents the kinds of symbols being used to represent revealable navigation on mobile.

Galaxy Zoo and the new dawn of citizen science | Science | The Observer

A lovely piece of mainstream news reporting on Galaxy Zoo and the other Zooniverse projects, and the broader role of Citizen Science.

Webstock ‘12: Matt Haughey - Lessons for a 40 year old on Vimeo

I really enjoyed Matt’s talk from Webstock. I know some people thought it might be a bit of a downer but I actually found it very inspiring.

dawdlr

A twitter for the Long Now from Russell Davies. You can submit an answer to the question “What are you doing, you know, more generally?” to:

Dawdlr, c/o RIG, 32-38 Scrutton Street, London, EC2A 4RQ

Earth Station: The Afterlife of Technology at the End of the World - Alexis Madrigal - Technology - The Atlantic

The wonderful story of an odd place:

The Jamesburg Earth Station is a massive satellite receiver in a remote valley in California. It played a central role in satellite communications for three decades, but had been forgotten until the current owner put it up for sale, promoting it as a great place to spend the apocalypse.

SETILive

This is not only the single most important human endeavour that you can participate in, it is also ridiculously gorgeous.

Science!

Webstock: Jeremy Keith | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

I love these sketchnotes from my presentation at Webstock.

Webstock: Jeremy Keith

The Unobserved

Describing itself as a radio magazine, this site gathers together audio from multiple sources. Oddly though, there’s no podcast feed and they make it hard to get at the source mp3s.

Pictos

In an interesting new twist, Pictos now allows you to put together a custom subset of their icons as a font that can be served from their server just like any other webfont service.

The Restart Page - Free unlimited rebooting experience from vintage operating systems

Wallow in nerd nostalgia and experience the Proustian rush of rebooting old operating systems.

MAKE ROOM NOW

Matt is offering up his space in central Brighton every Wednesday afternoon for free-for-all Arduino tinkering. I should try to get over there.

The Fermi Paradox, Self-Replicating Probes, and the Interstellar Transportation Bandwidth

Re-examining Von Neumann probes, reconciling their apparent scarcity with the Fermi paradox.

12412 - Experience and learn 12 new web technologies in 12 months

Here’s a challenge for the new year: use each month as an opportunity to try out a new web technology.

Set yourself small, achievable projects to work on and use 12412.org as a support group. We will all help to motivate each other and join in to offer help where we can.

Predicting the Future of Computing - Interactive Feature - NYTimes.com

An interactive timeline where we, the wise crowd, can add our predictions (although the timeline for the past, showing important technological breakthroughs, is bizarrely missing Cooke and Wheatsone’s telegraph).

The Icon Handbook | The Hickensian | Hicksdesign

Jon gives us a run-through on what to expect from his new book. I’ve had a sneak peek and it looks amazing—I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.

The mobile app is going the way of the CD-ROM: To the dustbin of history | VentureBeat

Some future-friendly musings on mobile from Mozilla and Yahoo.

Silicon Valley Buzz - Science for the everyday man - YouTube

Ariel is interviewed by Seth Shostak. Science! Science! Science!

Rhizome | She Was A Camera

Remembering the camgirl community.

Occupy George

A stroke of genius: turning money itself into the carrier for infographics on wealth distribution in America.

A List Apart: Articles: Say No to SOPA

A superb piece of writing from Jeffrey, scorching the screen with righteous anger. THIS. IS. IMPORTANT!

SOPA approaches the piracy problem with a broad brush, lights that brush on fire, and soaks the whole internet in gasoline.

The Social Graph is Neither (Pinboard Blog)

This post from Maciej might initially seem negative but read it through to the end: there’s a very powerful positive message.

The New Patterns of Culture: Slow, Fast & Spiky

A thoughtful piece from Matt on the changes in cultural transmission that we should be embracing instead of bemoaning.

Innovation Starvation | World Policy Institute

A rallying cry from Neal Stephenson for Getting Big Stuff Done.

LukeW | Breaking Dev: Responsible & Responsive

Luke’s excellent detailed notes from Scott’s talk at Breaking Development about building the Boston Globe site.

My speech to the IAAC | Ben Hammersley’s Dangerous Precedent

A great speech by Ben Hammersley that ties together multiple strands of life in the 21st century.

Ole: the quest for aurorae on Vimeo

The story behind one of the winning photographs at this year’s Astronomy Photographer Of The Year that I was lucky enough to attend. This is beautiful.

The shape of our future book — Satellite — Craig Mod

Craig has written down his dConstruct talk, the one that completely polarised opinion. Personally, I loved it.

School surveillance: how big brother spies on pupils | UK news | The Guardian

Having just seen Anna Debenham’s superb but scary presentation at Update about the shocking state of UK schools, this is a timely piece of journalism.

Salter Cane — Anomie - YouTube

We played at the bottom of the art-deco staircase in Bexhill’s De La Warr Pavilion. Sounds pretty good, if I do say so myself.

The Technium: Why the Impossible Happens More Often

A wonderful reminder by Kevin Kelly of the amazing interconnected world we live in, thanks to network effects.

Creating responsive images using the noscript tag | Head

Now this is intriguing: putting your default images inside a noscript element, then do your viewport measuring and image-swapping before removing the noscript tags. But when I tried this a while back, I couldn’t get access to the noscript elements with JavaScript (which makes sense, when you think about it).

I wonder if it’s the use of class names or jQuery that allows it to work here?

Escaping the Digital Dark Age

Stewart Brand wrote this twelve years ago: it’s more relevant than ever in today’s cloud-worshipping climate.

I’d like to think that it’s ironic that I’m linking to The Wayback Machine because the original URL for this essay is dead. But it isn’t ironic, it’s horrific.

Design Firm Seeks to Humanize Technology - NYTimes.com

Those lovely BERG chaps profiled in the New York Times.

Swarmanoid, the movie - YouTube

I, for one, welcome our autonomous swarming robot overlords.

marstall/shim - GitHub

A very clever and tricksy way to sync up multiple devices so that when you refresh a URL or follow a link on one, it happens on all of them. It uses OS X’s Internet Sharing feature combined with locally-hosted Node.js. It’s positively McGyverian!

Russell M Davies: Make things, not media platforms (Wired UK)

A rallying cry from Russell, urging us not to rely too much on the intangible.

100 Year Starship Study

Now this looks like a fascinating project …and there’s a symposium happening in Florida at the end of September with Jill Tartar, Stewart Brand and more. I want to go to there.

Atlas V Juno launch - August 5, 2011 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

So long, Juno. Call me when you get to Jupiter.

Atlas V Juno launch - August 5, 2011

Bruce Lawson’s personal site  : HTML5, hollow demos and forgetting the basics

A great reminder from Bruce that we need to remember to use cutting-edge web technology responsibly.

The Robot-Readable World – Blog – BERG

Wonderful musings from Matt on meeting the emerging machine intelligence halfway.

Lava Lamp Installation on Vimeo

Brighton hacker Jason Hotchkiss demos his music-generating lava lamps in this promo video for the Brighton Maker Faire taking place the day after dConstruct.

CreativeJS | The very best of creative JavaScript and HTML5

This is your one-stop shop for envelope-pushing in the browser:

The very best of creative JavaScript and HTML5.

ISS-Notify by Nathan Bergey — Kickstarter

I want one! An ambient signifier (in lamp form) to let you know when the ISS is flying overhead. Geekgasm!

Setistars

Would you like SETI to resume sweeping the skies in search of extraterrestrial life? Now you can put your money behind re-kickstarting that noble mission.

10,000 Year Clock

Jeff Bezos has put together a little site to give some background on The Clock Of The Long Now: soon to be open to visitors.

Annoying.js: How to be an asshole • Javascript • Kilian Valkhof

All of the most irritating uses of JavaScript gathered together into one library.

Open science: a future shaped by shared experience | Education | The Observer

A nice summation of the open science movement, courtesy of Bobbie.

susan jean robertson » We are the minority

Another great post from Susan. Not only are we making unwarranted assumptions about what the mythical mobile user wants, we’re basing those assumptions on the worst possible user base: ourselves.

Nanolaw with Daughter (Ftrain.com)

A superbly written piece of near-future legal-dystopian speculative fiction. Damn, that Paul Ford can write!

Mobile Browser panel, fzijlstra on USTREAM. Conference

Here’s a video of the mobile browser panel I moderated at Mobilism in Amsterdam today. It gets fairly technical for a while but it was mostly a lot of fun.

LukeW | An Event Apart: All Our Yesterdays

Luke’s notes from my talk about long-term thinking and online preservation at An Event Apart in Boston.

Translation From MS-Speak to English of Selected Portions of Dean Hachamovitch’s “Native HTML5″ announcement [dive into mark]

Mark Pilgrim translates Dean Hachamovitch’s utterly bizarre and nonsensical announcement of IE10 that kept talking about “native HTML5.”

Experience Is What We Make It | UX Magazine

The Riegers are like emissaries from Planet Smart and we mere mortals are fortunate that they take the time to give us great articles like this.

LukeW | An Event Apart: Design Principles

Luke’s notes from my talk at An Event Apart Seattle do a good job of capturing the gist of what I was saying.

This Place is Not a Place of Honor on Vimeo

A demo reel for the proposed solution to a very, very, very long term problem.

StartUpBritain done better

Apparently I’m the anti- David Cameron. I’ll take that.

Brian Eno - The Big Here and the Long Now | DIGITALSOULS.COM | New Media Art | Philosophy | Culture

Brian Eno’s original essay on the origins of The Long Now Foundation. It is ten years old—a long time on the web and 1% of a millennium.

Humans are capable of a unique trick: creating realities by first imagining them, by experiencing them in their minds. When Martin Luther King said “I have a dream…” , he was inviting others to dream it with him. Once a dream becomes shared in that way, current reality gets measured against it and then modified towards it. As soon as we sense the possibility of a more desirable world, we begin behaving differently – as though that world is starting to come into existence, as though, in our minds at least, we’re already there. The dream becomes an invisible force which pulls us forward. By this process it starts to come true. The act of imagining something makes it real.

yepnope.js | A Conditional Loader For Your Polyfills!

A nice’n’small lazy loader that should make life easier when it comes to pollyfilling browser support for nifty HTML5 or CSS3 features.

Alex Payne — Content-Centric Networks and the Future of the Internet

A brave and probably unpopular stance; could it be that the fundamental technological bedrock of the internet needs to change to avoid the seemingly-inevitable rise of walled gardens?

Wired 9.03: Founding Father

Here’s a gem from the past: a thoroughly fascinating and gripping interview with Paul Baran by Stewart Brand. It’s thrilling stuff—I got goosebumps.

Long Bets - The original URL for this prediction (www.longbets.org/601) will no longer be available in eleven years.

This is my prediction. If you think it’s wrong, challenge it. We shall then partake in a wager.

I Have Seen the Future and I Am Opposed - Core77

Don Norman bemoans the seemingly-inevitable direction that the internet is taking; from an open system of exchange to a closed, controlled broadcast channel. I share his fear.

Near Arctic, Seed Vault Is a Fort Knox of Food - New York Times

A tour of the Global Seed Bank in Svalbard.

The Universal magazine - Google Books

A proto-wikipedia from January 1749.

YouTube - Il était une fois… les technologies du passé.

French schoolchildren are given technological tools that are less than thirty years old and asked to describe what they do.

Nanotechnology and Space

Implications of Molecular Nanotechnology Technical Performance Parameters on Previously Defined Space System Architectures.

This paper, delivered at the 1995 Foresight Conference on Molecular Nanotechnology (sponsored by Apple Computers) shows the practical applications of diamondoid and fullerene materials not just in constructing a space elevator, but in the subsequent construction of orbital colonies

Nanotechnology - Foresight Institute

There’s still plenty of room at the bottom.

Foresight Institute’s mission is to ensure the beneficial implementation of nanotechnology.

A space elevator, for example.

Wake Up, Geek Culture. Time to Die | Magazine

Wired Magazine break with tradition by publishing a halfway interesting article (though you’ll still need Readability or Instapaper to make the experience of reading it bearable).

Modifiable Futures: Science Fiction at the Bench by Colin Milburn

The influence of science on science-fiction and the influence of science-fiction on science. Or rather, how science-fiction mods science, and how science (and software) mods science-fiction.

Yet even as it has become ever more familiar and commonplace, this mash‐up of the word “science” with the word “fiction” still seems to insist on a certain internal incoherence, as if the tiny typographic space inside the label of “science fiction” were to signify a vast chasm, a void between alien worlds.

Near Future Laboratory » Blog Archive » Designing Fiction in Volume Q.

Julian Bleecker explains design fiction in the context of science fiction using the examples of gestural interfaces and virtual reality.

Shanzai! (Wired UK)

Bobbie documents the work of Jan Chipchase, currently looking into the design decisions behind counterfeit goods on sale in Shanghai.

9 hours (9h) Designer Capsule Hotel Review - Kyoto, Japan

A fascinating look at the experience design of the 9h brand of capsule hotel. I like the consistent use of colour, light and iconography.

..about validating

An oldie but a goodie. This is why we have standards.

Planet Hunters

Another great Zooniverse project: find planets by looking for tell-tale signs of light distortion from distant stars.

Not such wicked leaks | Presseurop – English

A great piece by Umberto Eco on the real effect of Wikileaks: not in exposing dangerous secrets, but in exposing what we already knew anyway.

THE WORLD QUESTION CENTER 2010 — Page 8

How Has The Internet Changed The Way You Think?

The Milky Way Project

The latest Zooniverse project is a beauty: you can help spot bubbles in infra-red images of nebulae.

Dreams of Space - Books and Ephemera

A blog documenting printed visions of space exploration in the form of children's books.

Hack me with science: a look back at Science Hack Day SF · YDN Blog

An absolutely fantastic write-up of Science Hack Day San Francisco ...as seen through the lens of Stephen Johnson's Where Good Ideas Come From.

eVOLVINGoCTOPUS.com » Science Hack Day

A write-up of the "Wearable DNA" hack from Science Hack Day SF.

Mayo Nissen » City Tickets

I really like this idea for connecting cities to the papernet.

Playbutton

A wearable read-only music player that's a badge. Kind of awesome.

Help stop the spread of NIBS (Native is Better Syndrome) | Web Directions

John Allsopp calls bullshit on the notion that native apps are intrinsically better than web apps. I concur.

Frank Chimero - How to Have an Idea

Stephen Johnson wrote a book. Frank Chimero did a doodle.

Walter Benjamin’s Aura: Open Bookmarks and the future eBook | booktwo.org

James Bridle propsed Open Bookmarks during a presentation at Tools of Change in Frankfurt today: "Open Bookmarks is not a thing, it’s a proposal, a flag in the ground. We need to agree on a way of sharing and storing annotations and bookmarks, reading attention data and everything around the book: that aura."

Kevin Kelly and Steven Johnson on Where Ideas Come From | Magazine

You'll need to use Instapaper/Readability/Safari Reader to make it legible, but this conversation is well worth reading. Now I want to get those books.

BBC News - Audio slideshow: Seeing into space

I was invited along to the 2010 Astronomy Photographer of the Year awards ceremony in Greenwich but alas, I wasn't able to make it. Looks like it was fantastic.

Hipster Dinosaurs - Imgur

Yeah, seen it. It's not as funny as the first meme.

The Wilderness Downtown

A nifty interactive video for Arcade Fire's "We Used To Wait." It claims to be built in HTML5 but actually uses XHTML 1.0 and HTML 4.01 doctypes throughout. *sigh*

Sweet Talking Your Computer - WSJ.com

Personality in software. Pieces of technology are people too.

Big Questions Online

A site that aims to ask and explore the Big Questions of human purpose and ultimate reality, with a focus on science, religion, markets and morals.

What's Wrong With 'X Is Dead' - Science and Tech - The Atlantic

An excellent long-zoom rebuttal by Alexis Madrigal of the whole "The web is dead" guff on Wired right now.

Coudal Partners

Monana county fair, near the Iowa/Nebraska border.

Medieval Multitasking: Did We Ever Focus? | Culture | Religion Dispatches

A fascinating look at hypertext in illuminated manuscripts.

Op-Ed Contributor - Mind Over Mass Media - NYTimes.com

An excellent rebuttal by Steven Pinker to Nicholas Carr's usual trolling.

Free forum : PyongyangTrafficGirls - Portal

A website dedicated to the world-renowned trafficwomen of North Korea.

Frank Chimero — Holiday

Burnout is a bitch.

How to Access the Internet (A Guide from 2025)

An entertaining missive from the future.

Four Hundred & Twenty-Nine Pounds — Paul Robert Lloyd

Paul doesn't need an iPad. Neither do I. Neither do you. Paul is spending his money elsewhere.

Evolution and Creativity: Why Humans Triumphed - WSJ.com

Matt Ridley's new book sounds like a corker.

Geology in Art: The Thagomizer

"...after the late Thag Simmons." No, really. It's a proper paleontological term now.

The real reason why Steve Jobs hates Flash - Charlie's Diary

Charles Stross peers into his dilithium crystal ball and tells tales of the future as decided by Apple.

An Archaeological Approach to SETI

The search for Dyson spheres.

haroon baig | projects | twitwee clock

A cute hardware hack: send a tweet with the word TwitweeClock, the hashtag #TwitweeClock, or the username @TwitweeClock, and this cuckoo clock will, well, cuckoo.

Tattúínárdœla saga: If Star Wars Were an Icelandic Saga « Tattúínárdœla saga

The nerdgasmic result of a collision between linguistics and Star Wars.

SXSW 2010: Fieldnotes | booktwo.org

James Bridle's lovely notebook for his first visit to South by Southwest.

ride, rise, roar :: premiering in march at sxsw

Hillman Curtis's new film about David Byrne and Brian Eno will be premiering at Southby. Should be fun.

Making Light: The lily knows not why it blossoms in the spring

Before we point the finger and laugh at the Facebook users leaving confused comments on Read Write Web, we should look to our own experiences with Google Buzz.

Olia Lialina. A Vernacular web. Indigenous and Barbarians.

A wonderful trip down memory lane to the amateur web of the 90s.

A Democracy of Netbooks

The bottom-up appeal of netbooks in all their cheap, crappy glory.

Media: A world of hits | The Economist

The challenges of the long tail.

Legos on Hoth - a set on Flickr

Lovely Lego Star Wars pictures.

A Pilot's Dream

Another World JS - Megidish.net

Quite astonishing use of canvas: the game Another World ported to JavaScript.

Solar System Scale Model

This web page is half a mile wide.

Humanising data: introducing “Chernoff Schools” for Ashdown – Blog – BERG

Matt gets an opportunity to use the Chernoff effect for visualising school data.

Social Networks Aren't Good Businesses - washingtonpost.com

An interesting take on the business models of social networking sites.

Bookkake — Dirty Books

Best. Appropriate domain name. Ever.

All Sorts - a linguistic experiment

Collective nouns, collected.

The Good Enough Revolution: When Cheap and Simple Is Just Fine

A great article about the rising prevalence of "rough consensus and running code" in the real world.

The Pushbutton Web: Realtime Becomes Real - Anil Dash

Anil Dash writes about the realtime web, calling it Pushbutton.

Stellarium

A free open source planetarium for your computer.

Social Media Icons — Paul Robert Lloyd

A set of icons (in different sizes) from various trendy websites to use in your designs.

Sputnik Observatory For the Study of Contemporary Culture : Vint Cerf : Node : Dynamic Meshes

The latest project from Jonathan Harris is a not-for-profit educational organization dedicated to the study of contemporary culture: "We fulfill this mission by documenting, archiving, and disseminating ideas that are shaping modern thought by interviewing leading thinkers in the arts, sciences and technology from around the world."

Slide 1 of 44 (Scope at reboot11, Matt Webb, S&W)

Matt's opening keynote from Reboot 11 in Copenhagen.

The Technium: Technophilia

Kevin Kelly on mankind's love/hate relationship with technology.

Anonymous Pro

A nice fixed-width font from Mark Simonson. I'm giving it a whirl in Textmate.

How Twitter Will Change the Way We Live -- Printout -- TIME

Steven Johnson waxes lyrical on Twitter.

Racist Camera! No, I did not blink... I'm just Asian! on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

"Nikon, the racist camera" (sing it to the tune of Flight of the Concords' "Albi, the racist dragon").

Racist Camera! No, I did not blink... I'm just Asian!

Paleo-Future - Paleo-Future Blog

A look into the future that never was. This stuff is right up my alley.

Near Future Laboratory » Blog Archive » Design Fiction: A Short Essay on Design, Science, Fact and Fiction

Download the PDF of this essay from the Near Future Laboratory and wallow in the sci-fi/tech/design goodness.

chartbeat - real-time website analytics and uptime monitoring

This looks like an interesting approach to web analytics: a JavaScript function pings the service every 10 seconds allowing for a near realtime overview.

Accident-explanatory slings to make you smile

If you've ever broken/strained a limb, you'll know how tedious it gets answering the inevitable "what happened?" question time and time again.

Internet Users in Developing Countries Drag on Sites’ Profits - NYTimes.com

A sobering article on the cost of being a truly global website. This gives some context to Last.fm's recent pricing model decision.

CSSquirrel : Comic

This is me battling the zombies of the linkrot apocalypse. With a squirrel.

Long Now image - Photos: The 10,000 Year Clock - CNET News

Pictures of some prototypes of the clock of the Long Now.

html5 and Firefox2

Remy explains how to get Firefox 2 and Camino to recognise HTML5 structural elements.

Science and Tech Ads - a set on Flickr

Vintage advertising of science and technology.

Martin ad

Chris Shiflett: Save the Internet with rev="canonical"

Chris Shiflett gets behind the rev="canonical" movement. This thing is really gaining momentum.

RevCanonical’s Blog

rev="canonical" has a posse.

Kai Chan Vong - script snippets

Kai has written a handy little CSS diagnostic script to help you identify problems with your markup.

When is the right time for accessibility? » box of chocolates

Prompted by the Bespin fuss, Derek shares his thoughts on *when* accessibility should be integrated into products.

BBC NEWS | Programmes | Click | Stevie Wonder interview

Stevie Wonder talks about assistive technology. I think this finally proves that yes, accessibility *is* sexy!

Volunteers Put The Economist Into Chinese - NYTimes.com

Andy Baio gets his first by-line in a national newspaper (based on an article from Waxy.org).

2Modern Design Talk - Modern Furniture & Design Blog: Designer Toast

If I could get Twitter updates burned into my toast, my mornings would become much more efficient.

Code: Flickr Developer Blog » Found in space

The “blind astrometry server” is a program which monitors the Astrometry group on Flickr, looking for new photos of the night sky. It then analyzes each photo, and from the unique star positions shown it figures out what part of the sky was photographed and what interesting planets, galaxies or nebulae are contained within.

Making the most of hereish and nowish on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

The Possibility Jelly lives on the hypersurface of the present.

Making the most of hereish and nowish

Monument: Home

A beautiful video created on London's Monument. "The installation provides a live stream of continually modified time-lapse images 24 hours a day, 7 days per week. A computer controlled digital camera provides a 360-degree panoramic view from the top of the Monument."

Official Google Webmaster Central Blog: Specify your canonical

There's a new rel value in town: "canonical". It looks like an awful lot like "bookmark".

ZX81 BASIC Programming by Steven Vickers

The manual that came with the ZX81 has been lovingly converted to HTML. This was my first contact with programming (or computers, for that matter).

passive-aggressive (and just plain aggressive) notes — no, your mother doesn’t work here

Dear internet, Please keep throwing up sites like this because no, I don't have anything better to do with my time than scroll and click through the entire archive. Thank you.

Localization Problems: A Cellphone's Missing Dot Kills Two People, Puts Three More in Jail

When localisation attacks. This is like a more morbid Douglas Adams vignette.

Official Google Blog: Introducing Measurement Lab

Vint Cerf announces M-Lab: an excellent resource which will allow people to find out if and how their internet access is being throttled. Viva l'internet!

IT's a man's world? - The F-Word

Sue Schofield plugs Ada Lovelace Day while taking a long hard look at the sniggering sexism endemic to the IT industry.

tomtaylor.co.uk : projects : microprinter

The details of Tom's hardware hack at PaperCamp: an old-school printer receipt printer hooked up via arduino.

moly_x_12

Follow the adventure of this group of artists from around the world, in a Japanese fold Moleskine sketchbook exchange.

Unobtrusify.com - Unobtrusive Javascript for Progressive Enhancement

A simple and powerful message, beautifully delivered (itself an example of unobtrusive JavaScript). Bravo, Phil Hawksworth!

How your friends' friends can affect your mood - life - 30 December 2008 - New Scientist

The spread of happiness, obesity and smoking habits through social networks.

How the Lowly Text Message May Save Languages That Could Otherwise Fade - WSJ.com

The importance of providing predictive text for minority languages (including Irish). To help preserve languages, advocates are pushing to make more written languages available on cellphones.

Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar 2008 - The Big Picture - Boston.com

An advent calendar from the Hubble telescope. Check back every day for a new image.

United States Patent Application: 0080209234

A patent filed by Google for offshore server farms cooled by sea water.

Roo Reynolds - Playful

Notes by Roo Reynolds from yesterday's Playful conference in London.

OpenID usability is not an oxymoron | FactoryCity

Chris has written an in-depth critique of the state of OpenID, focusing strongly on usability.

Sad Guys on Trading Floors

The cumalative effect of these captioned pictures will ease you through any financial crisis.

Maneki Neko - ScottWiki

It's been years since I read this charming Bruce Sterling short story but there isn't a week goes by that I don't think of it. It has grown more relevant over time.

arielwaldman wiki / space

Ariel has put together a list of 100 space-related Twitter accounts.

Networks - a set on Flickr

A collection of network diagrams and visualisations from the simple to the sublime.

Layers of abstraction

Thoughts for an eleventh September: Alvin Toffler, Hirohito, Sarah Palin « Adam Greenfield’s Speedbird

I should be depressed and dispirited after reading this, but the sheer quality of the writing gives me hope.

BrianOberkirch.com – Oh, You Wanted the Douchy Web?

Brian says what we're all thinking (or rather, what we would all be thinking if we actually wasted valuable brain cells thinking about TechC*nt).

dConstruct 2008 notes | AlastairC

Alastair's comprehensive notes from dConstruct.

Who Framed George Lakoff? - ChronicleReview.com

A detailed look at the troubled history of George Lakoff, the father of conceptual metaphor.

You've got too much e-mail - Los Angeles Times

Tantek is quoted ("EMAIL shall henceforth be known as EFAIL") in this LA Times article on the tyranny of email.

'Watchmen' Trailer to Comic Comparison | Features | RopeofSilicon.com Entertainment News

Side by side comparison of stills from the Watchmen trailer and the graphic novel.

Kevin Kelly -- The Technium

Scenius is like genius, only embedded in a scene rather than in genes.

Business Technology : New Service Helps Tech Startups Choose Terrible Names

I had a very pleasant chat on the phone with Ben Worthen from the Wall Street Journal. He likes my social buzzword generator.

Social networks may be imaginary | The Register

My new motto is "The Social Graph is a Spherical Cow."

Bruce Schneier: Are photographers really a threat? | Technology | The Guardian

An excellent article that explodes the ludicrous myth that terrorists like to go around taking pictures of potential targets so therefore photographers are dangerous.

Driven By Boredom 3.0 » Archive » Nascent Sexuality Polaroid Study

Nostalgia and sexual awakening plotted on a Google Map is a voyeuristic thing.

Unobtrusive JavaScript with jQuery

Simon's slides and demos from his half-day workshop at XTech.

The Acorn Electron Haven - Usborne Publishing Section

Prompted by my post on adventure games, Relly sent me this link to a wonderfully archaic series of books from 1983.

Camino. Releases. 1.6

Camino 1.6 is out. Get it while it's hot.

Tweet Clouds

My Twitter folksonomy. I'm glad to see that present continuous verbs are the most used.

ScreenReader.net: freeware freedom for blind and Visually impaired people

A free screen reader. If this turns out to be any good, it could be a game-changer: a long overdue kick in the behind for Freedom Scientific.

Thriving Office

Worst. Business Idea. Ever. A CD of office sounds so that homeworkers can impress clients on the phone with the sounds of industriousness. "Instant credibility for home businesses!"

Welcome | Ben Saunders | North Pole Speed Record

Intrepid adventurer Ben Saunders is off again. This time he aims to to set a new world speed record from Ward Hunt Island to the Geographic North Pole. He is armed with a beautiful website courtesy of Colly and the lads at Erskine.

Extenuating Circumstances – SXSW: The Web That Wasn’t

Dan Hon's very extensive notes from Alex Wright's great talk at South by Southwest, The Web That Wasn't.

Plants that Twitter when they need to be watered | Geek Gestalt - A blog by Daniel Terdiman - CNET News.com

Check out this cool arduino project: input from the moisture level of a plant sends an SMS to Twitter so you know it needs to be watered.

Licence to Roam » BarcampBrighton - Portable Information

Liveblogged notes from a discussion I participated in at BarCamp Brighton 2 about Social Network Portability.

NOSCRIPT for nerds. Stuff that disappears. -

Okay, you have to be a real JavaScript/HTML geek to find this funny but check this out: document.write('<noscript>...'); Madness!

Open Tech 2008 - 5th July in London.

I missed this last year but it looks like a good event. I must remember to leave some room in my calendar for this "informal, low cost one-day conference on technology, society and low-carbon living."

deathboy: anonymous vs scientology

An account of an anti-scientology protest in London that used memes as weapons: rickrolling, "the cake is a lie", you name it... and all while wearing V masks. In short, teh awesum.

Rands In Repose: Out Loud

Some good advice on preparing presentations.

Research Tools | Economist.com | Economist.com

The Economist style guide: the "dos and don'ts" section is particularly useful.

The CandyFab Project - The Revolution will be Caramelized.

Make your own 3D printer (you know, like the replicator in Star Trek) using sugar and an air pump. The results are astoundingly cool.

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | 'Darkest ever' material created

It's like, how much more black could this be? And the answer is none. None more black.

Nanotech Used 2000 Years Ago to Make History's Sharpest Swords | Wired Science from Wired.com

Could it be that swords made of wootz steel—as described in The Baroque Cycle—were so sharp because their blades contained fullerenes?

wrapping up 2007 (28 December 2007, Interconnected)

A brilliant braindump by Matt Webb examining the weave of the Web and the nature of reality. Set aside some time to soak this up.

Is it jeremykeith's Birthday?

You've seen isitchristmas.com, istwitterdown.com and dowebsitesneedtolookexactlythesameineverybrowser.com. Now Gareth Rushgrove has built isitbirthday.com. Subscribe to the RSS feed just in case you were wondering when my birthday is.

Podcast: Welcome to Tech weekly from the Guardian | Technology | Guardian Unlimited

There's a new technology podcast available from The Guardian. It's hosted by Aleks and judging from the first episode, it's going to be very good indeed.

evhead: Will it fly? How to Evaluate a New Product Idea

Ev Williams has some tips for evaluating business ideas, broken down by tractability, obviousness, deepness, wideness, discoverability, monetizability (ugh!) and the all-important "personally compelling" factor.

No Ideas But In Things

"No Ideas But In Things is a library of controls, animations, layouts, and displays that might be a source of inspiration for interaction designers. Dan Saffer is the curator. The title comes from a William Carlos Williams poem."

Official Google Blog: Encouraging people to contribute knowledge

Google have a service called Knol on the way. It looks like it's going up against Wikipedia.

The Rissington Podcast | Like Gardeners Question Time, but for geeks

Check out the redesigned site for the podcast from Jon and John. Acknowledge the divinity in its gloriously liquid splendour. Smashing work, chaps!

hyperpeople » Blog Archive » Mob Rules (The Law of Fives)

The text of Mark Pesce's excellent presentation at Web Directions South.

John Logie Baird: the home of the inventor of the medium has been reduced to rubble - Independent Online Edition > Media

With a disgusting disregard for history, the Bexhill home of John Logie Baird has been demolished. Here's a potted biography of the proto-geek who steampunked his way into our living rooms.

AssistiveWare - Videos on computer accessibility

It's easy for us to take technology for granted. This video shows how transformative technology can be. I am humbled.

Chinese Culture Versus German Culture » Adino Online

A series of infographics comparing Chinese and German culture. Amusing and astute.

Stephen Fry - VideoJug

Stephen Fry answers questions on VideoJug about technology and Web 2.0 amongst other things. Swoonsome.

Field Notes Brand

Dan is claiming that these notebooks could be moleskin killers. I am intrigued and I do like the nice use of Futura.

The Eachday Blog — Die Speech Bubble Logo, Die.

“Attention all startups, it’s a bad idea to hang your ID hat on a speech bubble. Just don’t.”

The Snowclones Database

A blog dedicated to cataloguing snowclones. Brilliant!

5 segundos

Superb blood donor video. Which reminds me...

Deathwatch: Three Technorati Monsters escape - Valleywag

Valleywag is using my picture of LOLtek to illustrate a post about the recent resignations at Technorati. Ouch!

When accessibility is not your problem (Joe Clark)

Notes from Joe's @smedias. Please read the whole thing before (mis)judging what he said.

Advice for presentations: It happens! ¶ Personal Weblog of Joe Clark, Toronto

Joe shares his experiences of public speaking. There's some great advice here.

Color Oracle

A very handy little app that sits in your menu bar on OS X and can instantly show you how your screen would look if you were colour blind.

Stuff and Nonsense

Malarkey's got a brand new bag... if by "bag" you mean "website". And a very nice bag it is too.

HubbleSite - NewsCenter - The Carina Nebula: Star Birth in the Extreme (04/24/2007) - Release Images

Another stunning image from the Hubble telescope. This image is heart-stoppingly beautiful.

MOO | NoteCards - stand and deliver

They're here! New from Moo: NoteCards. Beauteous.

mezzoblue § Chalkwork Basic Royalty-free Icons

Dave has made some icons — very nice ones.

Flickr: adactio's photos tagged with lastfm:event=97947

Yes, there is a reason why I'm using this machine tag. Watch the next release of Last.fm for machine tagging goodness on events.

disambiguity - » Ambient Intimacy

An absolutely brilliant summation by Leisa Reichelt that nails Twitter's appeal: ambient intimacy.

FT.com / Home UK / UK - Brighton cluster at new media cutting edge

I'm living on the cutting edge, apparently. This article is more like a press release meets an annual report, completely missing out the real reasons why Brighton is a cool place to live and work.

box of chocolates » Innovations in Accessibility

Derek points to a new piece of assistive technology and wonders where the next innovation will come from.

Editors' top noise cancellation headphones - CNET Reviews

I need to get some noise-cancelling headphones for the flight to Vancouver. Those Sennheisers are looking good for the price.

In Saturn’s Shadow

This picture of Saturn, taken from the Cassini probe, is literally incredible: it doesn't look real.

Some Hands-On Time With the iPhone - Bits - Technology - New York Times Blog

David Pogue gets down and dirty with the iPhone. The good: "It feels amazing in your hand." The bad: "Typing is difficult."

Dear JavaScript Library Developers… - Wait till I come!

Christian's wish list for JavaScript libraries.

www.steve.museum - Home

An experiment in social tagging of art museum collections

Powerhouse Museum | Sydney Australia

Fantastic collection of user-tagged content at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney.

Sillyness Spelled Wrong Intentionally » Lifestream, ala WordPress

Chris J. Davis has turned my life stream thingy into a plug-in for Wordpress. Nice!

The Six-Word Memoir Contest: presented by SMITH Magazine and Twitter

Send a six word message to Twitter prefixed with "smithmag" and you could win an iPod nano. Go on, give Earnest Hemmingway a run for his money.

Toronto Interacts presentation, 2006.10.25

Joe's notes make for great reading, specifically "Accessibility is a precursor to usability."

Flickr: Photos from Space Explorer

Photos from space by Anousheh Ansari.

Flickr Services: Flickr API: flickr.tags.getHotList

This new method in the Flickr API could be used to create some fun zeitgeist-driven mashups.

Photo Matt » The Most Frustrating Thing

Matt points out that we can get sidetracked by taking what matters most to us and assuming that it matters most for success.

danwebb.net - RailsConf Presentation Slides and Example Code

A PDF of Dan's slides from RailsConf. Looks like it was an excellent presentation.

Brown University

Interesting use of unobtrusive JavaScript for front page navigation. Bonus points are awarded for the hAtom and hCard markup.

A Proposal for a Safari Microformats plugin : journal : hicksdesign Ο°

Jon's mock-ups of how microformat detection and display might work in Safari are spot on. It would be so cool if this idea was picked up by browser developers.

suda.co.uk/projects/microformats [Planet]

Planet Microformats: Brian aggregates blog posts, upcoming events, del.icio.us links and Flickr pics tagged with 'microformats' (which means this link will also appear there... I mean here).

Grease Monkey Graphic Novel

Read the first two chapters of Tim Eldred's graphic novel online.

Technorati Kitchen: Microformats Search

This is still experimental, but Technorati now allow you to search for snippets of content that has been marked up with microformats. My egosearching returns suitably satisfying results.

Powazek: Just a Thought: Death to User-Generated Content

Derek hits the nail on the head. User-generated content is such a cold, cold term.

The New Wisdom of the Web - Next Frontiers - MSNBC.com

Stewart Butterfield and Caterina Fake are on the cover of Newsweek. How cool is that?

Friendster lost steam. Is MySpace just a fad?

Danah Boyd writes an essay that would've been a blog post but it got too long.

Hiding in Plain Sight: An Interview with Adam Greenfield - Boxes and Arrows

Adam Greenfield talks about his new book, Everyware: The Dawning of Ubiquitous Computing.

Camino - Mozilla power, Mac style.

Camino 1.0 is out. Come and get it.

Dave Shea London Geek Dinner - 23rd January 2006

A transcript of the Q&A session with Dave.

Chuck Norris Facts

There is no theory of evolution, just a list of creatures Chuck Norris allows to live.

REST web services interface :: Tagyu

As a follow-up to my post about Yahoo's term extractor, I should point out that Tagyu also has an API. It's RESTful and simple.

The Sysadmin Song

Geeky but good.

Create an e-annoyance, go to jail | Perspectives | CNET News.com

Unbelievable. Annoying someone via the Internet is now a federal crime in the USA. Bye, bye, whistle blowers.

Buzzword Hell

Am I buzzword or not?

The Patent Epidemic

An article delving into the crazy, crazy world of the US Patent Office.

Folksonomy - New York Times

Daniel Pink explains folksonomies.

TIME Magazine -- The Road Ahead

A fun debate featuring Tim O'Reilly, Esther Dyson, Malcom Gladwell, Clay Shirky and Moby.

He's baaaack

Ladies and gentlemen.... John. Fucking. Oxton.

When Blobjects Rule the Earth

Bruce Sterling SIGGRAPH 2004 speech

delimport - Spotlight Plugins

This excellent little plug-in allows you to search your Del.icio.us links from Spotlight.

BBC interview with Gary McKinnon

The BBC talk to the hacker/conspiracy theorist awaiting extradition to the US. He's a bit of a loony but he's harmless.

The Law West of Ealing Broadway

The fascinating anonymous blog of an English magistrate (Justice of the Peace).

Behaviour : Using CSS selectors to apply Javascript behaviours

An excellent alternative to the inline cruft so common in most Ajax applications.

Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town

Cory Doctorow's new novel is out. Buy the dead tree version or download and enjoy, it's your choice.

Juicy Studio: Generic Form Validation Routine

A nice bit of unobtrusive DOM scripting for validating just about any form.

It's a whole new internet

An inspiring essay by Janice Fraser of Adaptive Path. The internet is back.

Reith Lectures 2005

The first of the Reith lectures is available online. There's also a podcast you can subscribe to.