Four short links: 20 May 2009

Cognitive Surplus, Data Centers=Mainframes, Django Microframework, and a Visit To The Future

  1. Distributed Proofreaders Celebrates 15000th Title Posted To Project Gutenberg — a great use of our collective intelligence and cognitive surplus. If I say one more Clay Shirkyism, someone’s gonna call BINGO. (via timoreilly on Twitter)
  2. Datacenter is the New Mainframe (Greg Linden) — wrapup of a Google paper that looks at datacenters in the terms of mainframes: time-sharing, scheduling, renting compute cycles, etc. I love the subtitle, “An Introduction to the Design of Warehouse-Scale Machines”.
  3. djng, a Django powered microframework — update from Simon Willison about the new take on Django he’s building. Microframeworks let you build an entire web application in a single file, usually with only one import statement. They are becoming increasingly popular for building small, self-contained applications that perform only one task—Service Oriented Architecture reborn as a combination of the Unix development philosophy and RESTful API design. I first saw this idea expressed in code by Anders Pearson and Ian Bicking back in 2005.
  4. Cute! (Dan Meyer) — photo from Dan Meyer’s classroom showing normal highschool students doing something that I assumed only geeks at conferences did. I love living in the future for all the little surprises like this.

Datacenter Power Allocation Chart
Approximate distribution of peak power usage by hardware subsystem in one of Google’s datacenters (circa 2007)

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