- 1746 Slippy Map of London — very nice use of Google Maps to recontextualise historic maps. (via USvTh3m)
- TPP Comic — the comic explaining TPP that you’ve been waiting for. (via BoingBoing)
- Synthetic Biology Investor’s Lament — some hypotheses about why synbio is so slow to fire.
- vizcities — open source 3D (OpenGL) city and data visualisation platform, using open data.
ENTRIES TAGGED "cities"
Slippy History, TPP Comic, SynBio Barriers, and 3D City Viz
Email Triage, Pulse Detection, Big Building Data, and Raspberryduino Ardpi
- Triage — iPhone app to quickly triage your email in your downtime. See also the backstory. Awesome UI.
- Webcam Pulse Detector — I was wondering how long it would take someone to do the Eulerian video magnification in real code. Now I’m wondering how long it will take the patent-inspired takedown…
- How Microsoft Quietly Built the City of the Future — The team now collects 500 million data transactions every 24 hours, and the smart buildings software presents engineers with prioritized lists of misbehaving equipment. Algorithms can balance out the cost of a fix in terms of money and energy being wasted with other factors such as how much impact fixing it will have on employees who work in that building. Because of that kind of analysis, a lower-cost problem in a research lab with critical operations may rank higher priority-wise than a higher-cost fix that directly affects few. Almost half of the issues the system identifies can be corrected in under a minute, Smith says.
- UDOO (Kickstarter) — mini PC that could run either Android or Linux, with an Arduino-compatible board embedded. Like faster Raspberry Pi but with Arduino Due-compatible I/O.
Visualizing City Data, Gigabits Unrealized, Use Open Source, and Bad IPs Cluster
- VizCities Dev Diary — step-by-step recount of how they brought London’s data to life, SimCity-style.
- Google Fibre Isn’t That Impressive — For [gigabit broadband] to become truly useful and necessary, we’ll need to see a long-term feedback loop of utility and acceptance. First, super-fast lines must allow us to do things that we can’t do with the pedestrian internet. This will prompt more people to demand gigabit lines, which will in turn invite developers to create more apps that require high speed, and so on. What I discovered in Kansas City is that this cycle has not yet begun. Or, as Ars Technica put it recently, “The rest of the internet is too slow for Google Fibre.”
- gov.uk Recommendations on Open Source — Use open source software in preference to proprietary or closed source alternatives, in particular for operating systems, networking software, Web servers, databases and programming languages.
- Internet Bad Neighbourhoods (PDF) — bilingual PhD thesis. The idea behind the Internet Bad Neighborhood concept is that the probability of a host in behaving badly increases if its neighboring hosts (i.e., hosts within the same subnetwork) also behave badly. This idea, in turn, can be exploited to improve current Internet security solutions, since it provides an indirect approach to predict new sources of attacks (neighboring hosts of malicious ones).
Visualizing cities' energy usage, population density, and material intensity.
This week's visualization is an interactive web-mapping tool that lets you explore energy usage, material intensity and the overall "urban metabolism" of major U.S. cities.
Cities should encourage homebrew innovation and inspiration.
Governments, particularly local governments, need to do more to understand and adapt to what might be called DIY citizenship.
Cooked Brands, HTML Bootstrap, Browser Security Headers, and Swarming Robots
- Cities in Fact and Fiction: An Interview with William Gibson (Scientific American) — Paris, as much as I love Paris, feels to me as though it’s long since been “cooked.” Its brand consists of what it is, and that can be embellished but not changed. A lack of availability of inexpensive shop-rentals is one very easily read warning sign of overcooking. I wish Manhattan condo towers could be required to have street frontage consisting of capsule micro-shops. The affordable retail slots would guarantee the rich folks upstairs interesting things to buy, interesting services, interesting food and drink, and constant market-driven turnover of same, while keeping the streetscape vital and allowing the city to do so many of the things cities do best. London, after the Olympic redo, will have fewer affordable retail slots, I imagine. (via Keith Bolland)
- Bootstrap — HTML toolkit from Twitter, includes base CSS and HTML for typography, forms, buttons, tables, grids, navigation, and more. Open sourced (Apache v2 license).
- Extra Headers for Browser Security — I hadn’t realized there were all these new headers to avoid XSS and other attacks. Can you recommend a good introduction to these new headers? (via Nelson Minar)
- Swarmanoid — award-winning robotics demo of heterogeneous, dynamically connected, small autonomous robots that provide services to each other to accomplish a larger goal. (via Mike Yalden)
The co-founder of SeeClickFix on how crowdsourcing can help local government
Gov 2.0 discussions tend to center on transparency and making data available to the general public. But information can flow in both directions. SeeClickFix believes citizens can offer as much to local government as government can offer to the people. SeeClickFix co-founder Jeff Blasius discusses the service in this Q&A.
Cities, How Things Work, Stylish Google, EC2 Numbers
- The City is a Battlesuit for Surviving the Future (IO9) — a great essay by Matt Jones, based on his talk at Webstock this year. Urban design is how we created alternate realities before we had iPhones, and the new technology lets us choose which science fiction future we want to inhabit. We are now a predominantly urban species, with over 50% of humanity living in a city. The overwhelming majority of these are not old post-industrial world cities such as London or New York, but large chaotic sprawls of the industrialising world such as the “maximum cities” of Mumbai or Guangzhou. Here the infrastructures are layered, ad-hoc, adaptive and personal – people there really are walking architecture, as Archigram said. Hacking post-industrial cities is becoming a necessity also. [...]
- How and Why Machines Work (MIT Open Course Ware) — Subject studies how and why machines work, how they are conceived, how they are developed (drawn), and how they are utilized. Students learn from the hands-on experiences of taking things apart mentally and physically, drawing (sketching, 3D CAD) what they envision and observe, taking occasional field trips, and completing an individual term project (concept, creation, and presentation). Emphasis on understanding the physics and history of machines. (via Hacker News)
- Google Style Guide — how Google codes. Useful if you’re working on their code, starting a job there, or want to mock them for not specifying K&R braces/four space tabs/<insert One True Way here>. (via Hacker News)
- EC2 Usage Guessed From Sequential IDs — The Superseries ID changes so rarely that originally I had assumed it was some kind of checksum. This would have been odd as it limits the total available IDs to 224 = 16.8 million. Up to very recently, the Superseries ID for all resource types – instances, images, volumes, snapshots, etc. – was 69 (in the us-east-1 region (for eu-west-1 the Superseries ID is 74). These days, new instances use the Superseries ID 68. This subtle change, unnoticed by the industry, may hint at an astonishing achievement: 8.4 million instances launched since EC2’s debut! (Instance IDs are even so 8.4M = 16.8M / 2.) (via mattb on delicious)
Digital Textbooks Rock, Diagrammed Sentences, Urban Games, Quirky Food
- CK-12 Textbooks Accepted by State of California — kudos to open textbook non-profit CK-12 for having many of their textbooks okayed for use in classrooms. Their books did better than those from commercial publishers! (via Slashdot)
- Diagrammr — web app to diagram simple sentences. (via brian on delicious)
- Noticings — Noticings is a game of noticing things in cities. Snap a photo of something interesting you happen upon, upload it to Flickr, tag it with ‘noticings’ and geotag it with where it was taken. (via migurski on delicious)
- White Castle Microwavable Frozen Hamburgers — Cal Henderson and Joshua Schachter can be bribed with these after midnight. (via direct observation)
A lot of information we have about cities comes through direct and intentioned observation and study, but could a lot of the time and expense spent on this research be garnered just as well by mining the data that citizens generate in their day-to-day lives through cell phone traffic and internet usage? That's one of the questions that Andrea Vaccari, a research associate at the MIT SENSEable City Lab, is trying to find out. Andrea will be speaking at the Where 2.0 Conference in May on the research that the SENSEable City Project is doing.