- Urban Camouflage Workshop — Most of the day was spent crafting urban camouflage intended to hide the wearer from the Kinect computer vision system. By the end of the workshop we understood how to dress to avoid detection for the three different Kinect formats. (via Beta Knowledge)
- Starting a Django Project The Right Way (Jeff Knupp) — I wish more people did this: it’s not enough to learn syntax these days. Projects live in a web of best practices for source code management, deployment, testing, and migrations.
- FailCon — a one-day conference for technology entrepreneurs, investors, developers and designers to study their own and others’ failures and prepare for success. Figure out how to learn from failures—they’re far more common than successes. (via Krissy Mo)
- Google Fiber in the Real World (Giga Om) — These tests show one of the limitations of Google’s Fiber network: other services. Since Google Fiber is providing virtually unheard of speeds for their subscribers, companies like Apple and I suspect Hulu, Netflix and Amazon will need to keep up. Are you serving DSL speeds to fiber customers? (via Jonathan Brewer)
ENTRIES TAGGED "failure"
CV Camouflage, Best Practices, Failure Conference, and Fiber Lessons
Abstraction problems, resilience engineering and outliers among Velocity's big themes.
Mike Loukides highlights talks from Velocity 2012, including: Bryan McQuade on the importance of understanding the full stack, Dr. Richard Cook on failures and complex systems, Mike Christian on redundant data centers, and John Rauser on the value of outliers.
Mike Brittain on the resilient user experience.
A failure in secondary content doesn't need to take down an entire website. Here, Etsy's Mike Brittain explains how to build resilience into UIs and allow for graceful failures.
Craft Pharma, Silly Toy, Failure, and Android Image/Audio Capture
- 3D-Printing Pharmaceuticals (BoingBoing) — Prof Cronin added: “3D printers are becoming increasingly common and affordable. It’s entirely possible that, in the future, we could see chemical engineering technology which is prohibitively expensive today filter down to laboratories and small commercial enterprises. “Even more importantly, we could use 3D printers to revolutionise access to health care in the developing world, allowing diagnosis and treatment to happen in a much more efficient and economical way than is possible now.
- Bolt Action Tactical Pen (Uncrate) — silliness.
- Ken Robinson’s Sunday Sermon (Vimeo) — In our culture, not to know is to be at fault socially… People pretend to know lots of things they don’t know. Because the worst thing to do is appear to be uninformed about something, to not have an opinion… We should know the limits of our knowledge and understand what we don’t know, and be willing to explore things we don’t know without feeling embarrassed of not knowing about them. If you work with someone who hides ignorance or failure, you’re working with a timebomb and one of your highest priorities should be to change that mindset or replace the person. (via Maria Popova)
- Using Android Camera in HTML Apps (David Calhoun) — From your browser you can now upload pictures and videos from the camera as well as sounds from the microphone. The returned data should be available to manipulate via the File API (via Josh Clark)
Resilience engineering and data's role in performance are key trends in web ops.
A number of emerging themes are defining the web operations world, including: resilience engineering, new approaches to failure, and the role data plays in boosting performance.
Commandline for Story, Dystopic Predictions, Studying Failures, and Two Great Tastes
- Curveship — a new interactive fiction system that can tell the same story in many different ways. Check out the examples on the home page. Important because interactive fiction and the command-lines of our lives are inextricably intertwined.
- Egypt’s Revolution: Coming to an Economy Near You (Umair Haque) — more dystopic prediction, but this phrase rings true: The lesson: You can’t steal the future forever — and, in a hyperconnected world, you probably can’t steal as much of it for as long.
- Why Startups Fail — failure is a more instructive teacher than success, so simply studying successful startups isn’t enough. (via Hacker News)
- Computer Science and Philosophy — Oxford is offering a program studying CS and Philosophy together. the two disciplines share a broad focus on the representation of information and rational inference, embracing common interests in algorithms, cognition, intelligence, language, models, proof, and verification. Computer Scientists need to be able to reflect critically and philosophically about these, as they push forward into novel domains. Philosophers need to understand them within a world increasingly shaped by computer technology, in which a whole new range of enquiry has opened up, from the philosophy of AI, artificial life and computation, to the ethics of privacy and intellectual property, to the epistemology of computer models (e.g. of global warming). I wish every CS student had taken a course in ethics.
Reverse Search, PDF Stripping, Flash Visualization, Failure
- Tineye — reverse search engine; you upload an image and they find you similar images so you know where else it’s used. Check out their cool searches.
- PDF Pirate — upload a PDF and this web site will give it back to you minus the restrictions on copying/printing/etc.
- Flare — an ActionScript library for creating visualizations that run in the Adobe Flash Player. BSD-licensed, modelled on Prefuse. When there’s a visualisation library for every platform, will we start to get people who know how to make them?
- The Importance of Failure (Marco Tabini) — This is a point that I don’t often hear made when people talk about failure; the moral behind a failure-related story is usually about preventing it, or dealing with the aftermath, but not about the fact that sometimes things go bad despite your best efforts, and all the careful risk management and contingency planning won’t keep you from going down in flames. This is important, because it forces every person to establish a risk threshold that they are willing to accept in every one of their life efforts.
The fiber cuts affecting much of the San Francisco Bay Area this week are similar to the outages in the Middle East last year (radar post), although far more limited in scope and impact. What I said last year still holds true and is repeated below: From an operations perspective these kinds of outages are nothing new, and underscore why…
Datacenter provider 365 Main released their initial report from Tuesday's power failure which affected Craigslist, Technorati, Yelp, TypePad, LiveJournal, Vox, and others. This outage is an excellent example of complex systems failure, and so I'll be using it as the basis for my next few posts on Operations. This is my own analysis using publicly available data. The 365main site…