Four short links: 19 April 2010

Sketching Apps, Content Economics, Anonymised Phone Browsing, and Baroque Web Design

  1. Sketchflow Demo (Vimeo) — wow, impressive tool for whipping up wireframes and workflows for web apps. I’ve dreamed of being able to build real apps in this fashion. (via davetenhave on Twitter)
  2. Content is a Public Good — fascinating guest post on Charlie Stross’s blog, making yet again the point that attempting to legislate the digital horse back into the content owner’s barn is futile. Content is a public good. Here’s what this doesn’t mean: It doesn’t mean content is free (Cleverer people than me have explained why information doesn’t want to be free.), or cheap to make (though it can be), or that content creators should not get rewarded for their efforts. And here’s what it does mean: It means that old business models based on content being a club good simply don’t work.
  3. Tor on AndroidOrbot is an application that allows mobile phone users to access the web, instant messaging and email without being monitored or blocked by their mobile internet service provider.
  4. Baroque Trappings of Today’s Web Applications (Elaine Wherry) — Personally, when I listen to harpsichord music from the Baroque period, not too much time passes before I start to think, “I think this harpsichord piece is just trying to play as many notes as possible.” Similarly, after browsing the Internet for a bit today I start to think, “I’m not sure I can withstand another mashup, rounded corner, or headline announcing a breakthrough platform.” Amusing essay (based on a talk given at a CHI event) but with serious points about the kitchen sink design aesthetic of many web apps.
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  • Ken Williams

    I cringed at Elaine’s descriptions of musical stylistic periods. It had little to do with reality as I understand it, and was pretty obviously retrofitted to make her analogy with the intertubes.