Four short links: 7 May 2010

Learning Languages, URL Mastery, Free as in Life, Heritage Remix

  1. Flash is Not a Right (Ian Bogost) — I worry that we’re losing a sense of diversity in computation. This seems to be happening at both the formal and informal levels. Georgia Tech’s computer science bachelor’s degree doesn’t require a language survey class, for example (although one is offered as an elective). This year in the Computational Media curriculum committee, we’ve been discussing the idea of creating a history of programming languages course as a partial salve, one that would explain how and why a number of different languages and environments evolved. Such a course would explicitly focus on how to learn new languages and environments, since that process is not always obvious. It’s a wonderful and liberating feeling to become familiar with and then master different environments, and everyone truly interested in computing should experience that joy.
  2. What Every Developer Should Know About URLs — a lot of detail of how the pieces hook together. (via bengebre on Delicious)
  3. Ryzom is an Open Source MMORPG — existing game, now GNU Affero licensed code for server, client, and tools, with CC-BY-SA licensed assets. (via Slashdot)
  4. Remix American High Style with Polyvore — the greatest challenge to heritage institutions is irrelevance, not penury. Brooklyn Museum is unsurpassed in creating relevance for its collections and its existence, and they do it by reaching out, where people are and not expecting them to come directly to us. If you’re at a gallery, museum, library, or archive and your first reaction is to protect what you’ve got, you’re doing it wrong. Report to Brooklyn for make-up classes. (via auchmill on Twitter)
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