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Four short links: 17 March 2011

Data Manual, Data Processing, Piracy Report, and Fragile Free

  1. The Open Data Manual — a HOWTO for organisations wanting to open up data. This report discusses legal, social and technical aspects of open data. The manual can be used by anyone but is especially designed for those seeking to open up data. It discusses the why, what and how of open data — why to go open, what open is, and the how to ‘open’ data.
  2. MDP — Modular Toolkit for Data-Processing. Open source Python toolkit embodying a pile of machine learning and signal processing algorithms. (via Joshua Schachter)
  3. Media Piracy in Emerging Economies — SSRC report. The study finds no systematic links between media piracy and organized crime or terrorism in any of the countries examined. Today, commercial pirates and transnational smugglers face the same dilemma as the legal industry: how to compete with free. (via BoingBoing)
  4. The Fragility of Free (Ben Brooks) — The fragility of free is a catchy term that describes what happens when the free money runs out. Or—perhaps more accurately—when the investors/founders/venture capitalists run out of cash, or patience, or both. Because at some point Twitter and all other companies have to make the move from ‘charity’ to ‘business’—or, put another way, they have to make the move from spending tons of money to making slightly more money than they spend. It’s at this moment that we begin to see the fragilities of the free system. Things that never had ads, get ads—things that were free, now cost a monthly fee. We have all seen it before with hundreds of services—many of which are no longer around. (via Marco Arment)
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