Four short links: 28 May 2010

Understanding a Shuffle, Bias, Open Source a Success in Malaysia, and Guardian APIs

  1. The Intuition Behind the Fisher-Yates Shuffle — this is a simple algorithm to randomize a list of things, but most people are initially puzzled that it is more efficient than a naive shuffling algorithm. This is a nice explanation of the logic behind it.
  2. Wikipedia and Inherent Open Source Bias — a specific case of what I think of as the Firefly Principle: what happens on the Internet isn’t representative of real life.
  3. Malaysian Public Sector Open Source Program — the Malaysian government is a heavy and successful user of open source.
  4. Guardian’s Platform Now Open for Business (GigaOm) — elegant summary breakdown of services from the Guardian: metadata for free, content if you pay, custom APIs and applications if you pay more. I’m interested to see how well this works, given that the newspaper business is struggling to find a business model that values content.
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