Tags: ship

Empire of the Air: The Imperial Airship Service

The first in a series of articles looking at the history of British airships a century ago …just in time for the revival.

The Blog That Disappeared - The New York Times

Fortunately there’s a back-up on the Internet Archive, but this tale of Google’s overnight destruction of fourteen years of writing is truly infuriating.

When we use their services, we trust that companies like Google will preserve some of the most personal things we have to share. They trust that we will not read the fine print.

When you pitch your tent in someone else’s walled garden, they can tear down your home whenever they want.

Dennis Cooper fears censorship as Google erases blog without warning | Books | The Guardian

Two weeks ago, writer and artist Dennis Cooper was checking his Gmail when something peculiar happened: the page was refreshed and he was notified that his account had been deactivated – along with the blog that he’d maintained for 14 years.

This is why the Indie Web exists.

His advice to other artists who work predominantly online is to maintain your own domain and back everything up.

The Conjoined Triangles of Senior-Level Development - The Frontside

This is relevant to my interests because I think I’m supposed to be a senior developer. Or maybe a technical director. I’m really not sure (job titles suck).

Anyway, I very much appreciate the idea that a technical leadership position isn’t just about technical skills, but also communication and connectedness.

When we boiled down what we’re looking for, we came away with 12 traits that divide pretty cleanly along those three areas of responsibility: technical capability, leadership, and community.

For someone like me with fairly mediocre technical capability, this is reassuring.

Now if I only I weren’t also mediocre in those other areas too…

How To Break Open The Web | Fast Company | Business + Innovation

Dan Gillmor and Kevin Marks report on the Decentralized Web Summit:

Kahle framed the gathering with three key questions: How can we build a reliable decentralized web? How can we make it more private? And how do we keep it fun and evolving?

The Foundation of Technical Leadership · An A List Apart Article

Story of my life:

I have to confess I had no idea what a technical leader really does. I figured it out, eventually.

Seriously, this resonates a lot with what I find myself doing at Clearleft these days.

Democratize the Internet Now! | New Republic

It is a sad and beautiful world wide web:

The technology that let people make web sites never went away. You can still set up a site as if it were 1995. But culture changes, as do expectations. It takes a certain set of skills to create your own web site, populate it with cool stuff, set up a web server, and publish your own cool-stuff web pages. I would argue that those skills should be a basic part of living in a transparent and open culture where individuals are able to communicate on an equal field of play. Some fellow nerds would argue the same. But most everyone else, statistically, just uses Facebook and plays along.

Paul Ford shines a light on the solution:

Standing against this tide of centralization is the indie web movement. Perhaps “movement” is too strong—it’s more an aesthetic of independence and decentralization. The IndieWebCamp web page states: “When you post something on the web, it should belong to you, not a corporation.” You should own your information and profit from it. You should have your own servers. Your destiny, which you signed over to Facebook in order to avoid learning a few lines of code, would once again be your own.

Beautiful, beautiful writing:

We could still live in that decentralized world, if we wanted to. Despite the rise of the all-seeing database, the core of the internet remains profoundly open. I can host it from my apartment, on a machine that costs $35. You can link to me from your site. Just the two of us. This is an age of great enterprise, no time to think small. Yet whatever enormous explosion tears through our digital world next will come from exactly that: an individual recognizing the potential of the small, where others see only scale.

Apprenticeship: A better path to mastering our craft | Louder Than Ten

I’ve been thinking a lot about learning, teaching, mentoring, coaching …this article by Ivana McConnell from last year is packed with gold nuggets of wisdom concerning apprenticeships.

As lifelong learners, we may be reluctant to call ourselves “masters.” But that’s missing the point, and it discounts the fact that teaching is learning. We’re not there to guarantee mastery—we’re there to give our apprentices fundamentals, to foster their respect, and make journeymen (or women) out of them. Mastery will come; we just offer the tools.

“Apprenticeships,” an article by Dan Mall

I really love what Dan is doing with his apprenticeship programme—I hope we can do something like this at Clearleft.

Instagram to third-party developers: drop dead - Zeldman on Web & Interaction Design

Jeffrey’s right. Instagram’s new deal with developers is openly hostile. It probably means the end of OwnYourGram in its current form …a service whose existence is frankly the only reason I’m able to use Instagram at all.

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.

Shane Becker - Dark Matter and the #IndieWeb

Shane gave a talk recently where he outlined his reasons for publishing on the indie web:

Most people reading this will probably have an account at most or all of these sites: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Vimeo, Tumblr, Wordpress. Many also had accounts at Friendster, Tribe, MySpace, Delicious, Magnolia, Gowalla, Geocities. But no one has an account at any of those (on the second list) anymore. And all of the content that we created on those sites is gone.

All of those super emo feeling you posted to MySpace, they’re all gone. Some of the great web designers of our generation got started on Geocities. That stuff is gone forever. And sure, it was sparkling animated GIFs and neon colors. But that’s important history. Yahoo bought it, left it alone for a while, and then decided one day to turn it off.

Helium Dreams - The New Yorker

This article on airships has my new favourite sentence in the English language:

During the First World War, Germany and its allies ceased production of sausages so that there would be enough cow guts to make zeppelins from which to bomb England.

Of course it was Simon who pointed me to this. Of course.

Old Weather: Whaling

A subset of one of my favourite sites on the web:

Explore the Arctic of the past from the deck of a whaling ship.

Choose your vessel and get transcribing.

Our Generation Ships Will Sink / Boing Boing

Kim Stanley Robinson pours cold water on the premise of generation starships for crewed interstellar travel.

The more I hear about Aurora, the more I think I might enjoy reading it.

Diversity Scholarships for ffconf

Remy and Julie are paying for diversity scholarships to Full Frontal on November 6th …including travel and accommodation costs.

The deadline for applications is October 2nd. If you know of someone who would benefit from this, please let them know.

Clearleft Graduate Internship

Know any talented recent graduates? Let ‘em know about this 3-month internship at Clearleft.

Mentorship for the Novice Expert · An A List Apart Column

Every single word that Lyza has written here speaks to me so, so much.

I have no idea what I’m doing and I’m nervous about messing up, but I keep doing this week after week because it feels important.

Get out of my head, Lyza!

Natasha Lampard, Friday, 27 March 2015

A long-zoom look at life, work, and success.

I’m not usually a fan of portmanteau neologisms, but I really like Tash’s coining of the word longtrepreneur.

Culture Ship Randomizer · A gravitas free zone.

For when you just have to name something after a Culture General Systems Vehicle …or maybe a General Contact Unit.

Someone tell Elon.

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.

Spotify Names the Chloe Weil Scholarship to Help Flatiron School Women Fund their Education

A scholarship fund for women students at the Flatiron School, in memory of Chloe.

Spotify has named the program the Chloe Weil Scholarship as a memorial to Chloe Weil, an inspiring designer and engineer who took a strong interest in creating opportunities for women in technology.

Less than Zero

I have to admit, my initial reaction to the idea of providing free access to some websites for people in developing countries was “well, it’s better than no access at all, right?” …but the more I think about it, the more I realise how short-sighted that is. The power of the internet stems from being a stupid network and anything that compromises that—even with the best of intentions—is an attack on its fundamental principles.

On the surface, it sounds great for carriers to exempt popular apps from data charges. But it’s anti-competitive, patronizing, and counter-productive.

NASA Study Proposes Airships, Cloud Cities for Venus Exploration - IEEE Spectrum

Airships in the atmosphere of Venus. More plausible than it might sound at first.

Baby Steps - Petra Gregorová

Petra has always been the strong one. She was the best friend that Chloe could have possibly had. Little wonder then that Chloe’s death continues to hit her so hard.

I still can’t fully comprehend it all nor do I have any idea how to learn to move on. All I know is that ever since the day I found out, I’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster. I go from being in shock, to being sad and angry, or completely numb.

Petra is getting help now. That’s good. She’s also writing about what she has been going through. That’s brave. Very brave.

She is one of the best human beings I know.

SKYLON Users’ Manual (PDF)

Tech specs for a spacecraft that doesn’t exist (yet).

IXS Enterprise (IXS-110) - an album on Flickr

Design fiction from a NASA scientist.

IXS Enterprise (Work In Progress)

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.

Unmoored

James re-imagines the Barbican as an airship drifting free of central London.

Control your own content

Honestly, if you value the content you create and put online, then you need to be in control of your own stuff.

Owning your own words – is it important?

A fascinating discussion on sharecropping vs. homesteading. Josh Miller from Branch freely admits that he’s only ever known a web where your content is held by somone else. Gina Trapani’s response is spot-on:

For me, publishing on a platform I have some ownership and control over is a matter of future-proofing my work. If I’m going to spend time making something I really care about on the web—even if it’s a tweet, brevity doesn’t mean it’s not meaningful—I don’t want to do it somewhere that will make it inaccessible after a certain amount of time, or somewhere that might go away, get acquired, or change unrecognizably.

When you get old and your memory is long and you lose parents and start having kids, you value your own and others’ personal archive much more.

Sponsorfied | Science Hack Day SF

The next Science Hack Day in San Francisco will be at the start of November. It would undoubtedly be a great event …but it needs sponsorship.

Do you know anyone who could help out?

A Ship Aground

This is how London looked on my birthday, as recorded by the stationary meatspace protrusion of James’s Ship Adrift.

A New HTTP Status Code for Legally-restricted Resources

I love Tim Bray’s idea for naming the response code for censored content on the internet in honour of Ray Bradbury.

Aio e Oio: Food for Friendship | Born Hungry

This beautiful piece of writing from Steph is making me hungry.

Google Transparency Report

Google’s datadump makes for a fascinating—and worrying—bit of data dumpster diving.

Sex differences in intimate relationships : Scientific Reports : Nature Publishing Group

Albert-László Barabási and Robin Dunbar are among the authors of this paper — it’s the scale-free network equivalent of the Avengers.

Sci-Fi Airshow :: Home

I want to go to there!

This is what Photoshop is for. Be sure to watch the slideshow.

Dark data, and how frustrating it is that we can’t see the forest from the trees – Helloform

Fred touches on the same issues that Frank highlighted in his dConstruct talk last year: what do we do with all of this wealth of material we’ve been collecting/ffffinding/scrobbling/liking/favouriting/plus-one-ing.

BBC News - Hackers plan space satellites to combat censorship

The network will interpret SOPA as damage and route around it …with SCIENCE!

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.

PROTECT IP Act Breaks The Internet on Vimeo

If you live in the States, please, please, for the love of the internet, write to your representative at fightforthefuture.org/pipa

Project Icarus

A joint effort by the Tau Zero Foundation and the British Interplanetary Society to research the design of an interstellar spacecraft.

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.

Unhosted - Imagine personal data freedom…

This looks like it might be worth investigating as one potential solution to the sharecropping problem: code for decentralising your data; you allow apps to access your data but you get to decide where that data lives. Intriguing.

danah boyd | apophenia » Tumblr disappeared me…

Yet another reason to host your own content instead of sharecropping; danah boyd wakes up one morning to find her Tumblr account has been moved to a different URL.

A List Apart: Articles: Orbital Content

A great piece about the changing nature of content ownership and distribution. And now I share it with you, validating its central premise.

Space craft - a set on Flickr

There's some lovely Buran porn here.

Buran

Allergic to "grilled cheese" - Love Letters - Relationships questions, advice and more

And the award for Best Euphemism In An Online Column goes to...

Giving back to the web community - Our Customers - Campaign Monitor

Organisers of BarCamps — and other geek gatherings — take note: Campaign Monitor will provide sponsorship in the shape of pizza and drink.

Star Over London - HOME

A zeppelin over London. No, this isn't some steampunk flight of fancy; it's for real.

Could Zeppelins soon grace our skies again? | Technology | The Guardian

Yes, yes, a thousand times, yes! "A new generation of environmentally friendly 'hybrid airships' could be just about to take off." Anything that makes everyday life more like Steampunk must be good.

Twitter / MarsPhoenix

The Mars Phoenix probe is twittering its journey to the red planet.

Pharyngula: EXPELLED!

The story of Professor Myers' foiled attempt to see the creationist propaganda movie, Expelled.

Google Code Blog: URLs are People, Too

This is great news! Brad Fitzpatrick and Kevin Marks have built a new Google API that will spider XFN links.

If all your friends jumped off of a bridge… at Ben Brown, Internet Rockstar

Ben Brown outlines the reasons why he left Facebook: "I think it is important to note that Facebook, though they claim to be a tool for staying connected, is actually a software tool designed *primarily* to deliver marketing messages to its audience."

No random play for you, old man! « Beth Granter

Facebook is ageist. Which sucks. To paraphrase Groucho Marx, you're only as old as the [woman/man] you are interested in [random play/networking/whatever you can get] with.

Web2Summit: Opening Up the Social Graph

David Recordon announces a new developer tool for tracking status changes on social networking sites.

Flickr Ate My Baby on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Sounds like Prince is being a bit of a twat. And Flickr have become complicit with the twattiness, to a degree.

Flickr Ate My Baby

API and RSS | irrepressible.info

Here's an API for accessing material that is censored in countries like China or Iran.You can use this API to republish that information on other sites, circumventing the censorship.

Ezprezzo.com - Aircraft carrier entirely made of Lego

It's an aircraft carrier. Made entirely out of Lego.

LIFEBLOG.anina.net: slides gave me an ultimatum

Anina, the blogging model, is told by her agency to stop blogging because "fashion and technology do not go together". Asshats.