- Gmail Vault — app to backup and restore the contents of your gmail account. (via Hacker News)
- Leaving Apps for HTML5 (Technology Review) — We sold 353 subscriptions through the iPad. We never discovered how to avoid the necessity of designing both landscape and portrait versions of the magazine for the app. We wasted $124,000 on outsourced software development. We fought amongst ourselves, and people left the company. There was untold expense of spirit. I hated every moment of our experiment with apps, because it tried to impose something closed, old, and printlike on something open, new, and digital. (via Alex Howard)
- Your Two Weeks of Fame, and Your Grandmother’s (PDF) — researchers mined 20C news articles to see whether shrinking news cycles caused briefer fame. Instead they found duration of celebrity is largely steady across the entire century, though depending on how they measured celebrity they could sometimes see changes in the duration with the most famous. (via Google Research)
- Dan Pink’s Travel Tips — the author travels a lot and has passed on his tips in these videos.
Four short links: 8 May 2012
Archiving Gmail, Apps vs Web, Historical Fame, and Travel Tips
Four short links: 9 January 2012
Apple Factories, Open Source Spy Drones, Mail Files, and Text Topic Extraction
- Mr Daisey and the Apple Factor (This American Life) — episode looking at the claims of human rights problems in Apple’s Chinese factories.
- OpenPilot — open source UAVs with cameras. Yes, a DIY spy drone on autopilot. (via Jim Stogdill)
- mbox — more technical information than you ever thought you’d need, to be saved for the time when you have to parse mailbox files. It’s a nightmare. (via Hacker News)
- Maui (Google Code) — Maui automatically identifies main topics in text documents. Depending on the task, topics are tags, keywords, keyphrases, vocabulary terms, descriptors, index terms or titles of Wikipedia articles. GPLv3.
Publishing News: Amazon and the sub-$300 tablet
Amazon tablet rumors, Stephen King offers early access, and the "email" copyright turns 29.
Can Amazon crack the $300 tablet barrier? Also, Stephen King's latest was available early to those with Klout, and the man who copyrighted "email" 29 years ago says email death notices are premature.
Strata Week: The effort to digitize Palin's email archive
Dealing with Sarah Palin's emails, privacy legislation, and a new Hadoop competitor
In the latest Strata Week: Sarah Palin's 24,000-page email archive gets digitized, location tracking bills are proposed, and LexisNexis gets into the big data game with an alternative to Hadoop.
Anatomy of a phish
In light of recent security snafus, it's worth reviewing the basics of phish detection and prevention.
Major security breaches sometimes lead to an onslaught of phish emails. Here's a handful of simple ways to spot suspect correspondence and avoid traps.
Four short links: 12 April 2011
Email Game, Faster B Trees, RFID+Projectors, and Airport Express Broken
- The Email Game — game mechanics to get you answering email more efficiently. Can’t wait to hear that conversation with corporate IT. “You want us to install what on the Exchange server?” (via Demo Day Wrapup)
- Stratified B-trees and versioning dictionaries — A classic versioned data structure in storage and computer science is the copy-on-write (CoW) B-tree — it underlies many of today’s file systems and databases, including WAFL, ZFS, Btrfs and more. Unfortunately, it doesn’t inherit the B-tree’s optimality properties; it has poor space utilization, cannot offer fast updates, and relies on random IO to scale. Yet, nothing better has been developed since. We describe the `stratified B-tree’, which beats all known semi-external memory versioned B-trees, including the CoW B-tree. In particular, it is the first versioned dictionary to achieve optimal tradeoffs between space, query and update performance. (via Bob Ippolito)
- DisplayCabinet (Ben Bashford) — We embedded a group of inanimate ornamental objects with RFID tags. Totems or avatars that represent either people, products or services. We also added RFID tags to a set of house keys and a wallet. Functional things that you carry with you. This group of objects combine with a set of shelves containing a hidden projector and RFID reader to become DisplayCabinet. (via Chris Heathcote)
- shairport — Aussie pulled the encryption keys from an Airport Express device, so now you can have software pretend to be an Airport Express.
Open question: What's the point of inbox zero?
An attempt at understanding the deeper meaning of an empty inbox.
I have more than 10,000 unread messages in my inbox, and I think I'm okay with that. But am I missing something by not pursuing "inbox zero"?
Four short links: 29 September 2010
Social Mining, Machine Learning, Traffic Patterns, and OpenOffice Autophoenixes
- Digital Mirror Demo (video) — demo of the Digital Mirror tool that analyses relationships. Some very cute visualizations of social proximity and presentation of the things you can learn from email, calendar, etc. (via kgreene on Twitter)
- Free Machine Learning Books — list of free online books from MetaOptimize readers. (via newsycombinator on Twitter)
- Chewie Stats — sweet chart of blog traffic after something went memetic. Interesting for the different qualities of traffic from each site: As one might expect, Reddit users go straight for the punchline and bail immediately. One might assume the the same behavior from Facebook users, but no, among the visitors that hang around, they rank third! Likewise I would have expected MetaFilter readers to hang around and Boing Boing users to quickly move along; but in fact, the opposite is the case. (via chrissmessina on Twitter)
- The Document Foundation — new home of OpenOffice, which has a name change to LibreOffice. I hope this is the start of a Mozilla-like rebirth, as does Matt Asay. (via migueldeicaza on Twitter)
Email still isn't dead
Thrillist founder Ben Lerer on the staying power of newsletters.
Despite predictions of its imminent demise, email continues to be a viable medium — not only for communication, but for advertising as well. In this interview, Thrillist co-founder and Web 2.0 Expo NY speaker Ben Lerer explains why he remains bullish on email.
Four short links: 22 January 2010
notmuch Email, Mobile Processing, Realtime Mocap, and Making Money from Books
- notmuch — commandline tagging and fast search for a mailbox, regardless of which mail client you use.
- Processing for Android — pre-release versions of a Processing for Android devices. Mobile visual programming makes for interesting possibilities.
- Binary Body Double: Microsoft Reveals the Science Behind Project Natal for Xbox 360 — machine learning to recognize poses and render in the game at 30fps. It’s a basic real-time mocap and render.
- The Monetization Paradox — interesting post by Charlie Stross about the quandry of authors. he proposed $9.99 cap on ebooks replaces the high-end $24 hardcover. Not only does it mean less royalties for the authors, it means less money for the publishers — or, more importantly, their marketing divisions. Here’s a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I’d have gone into marketing. I’m a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for.