- Pharmacovigilance — Signals from The Crowd (PDF) — in the NY Times’ words: Using automated software tools to examine queries by 6 million Internet users taken from Web search logs in 2010, the researchers looked for searches relating to an antidepressant, paroxetine, and a cholestorol lowering drug, pravastatin. They were able to find evidence that the combination of the two drugs caused high blood sugar. (via New York Times)
- The World Wide Web is Moving to AOL — best satire you’ll read this month.
- Review History for Perceptual elements in Penn & Teller’s “Cups and Balls” magic trick — PeerJ makes peer review history available for the articles it publishes. Not only does this build reputation for peer reviewers who want it, but it is also a wonderful insight into how paranoid science must be to defend against mistakes in data interpretation. (The finished paper is fun, too)
- A New Basis for Copyright — NZ’s most technically-literate judge floats an idea for how copyright might be reimagined in a more useful way for the modern age by considering it in terms of human rights. Perhaps there should be consideration of a new copyright model that recognises content user rights against a backdrop of the right to receive and impart information and a truly balanced approach to information and expression that recognises that ideas expressed are building blocks for new ideas. Underpinning this must be a recognition on the part of content owners that the properties of new technologies dictate our responses, our behaviours, our values and our ways of thinking. These should not be seen as a threat but an opportunity. It cannot be a one-way street with traffic heading only in the direction dictated by content owners.
Drug Interactions from Search History, Web Satire, Visible Peer Review, and Rights-based Copyright
Design Trends, Researching Online Culture, Choosing Connection, and 3D Printing Creativity
- 13 Design Trends for 2013 — many of these coalesced what I’ve seen in websites recently, but I was particularly intrigued by the observation that search’s growing importance to apps is being reflected in larger searchboxes.
- How Twitter Gets In The Way of Research (Buzzfeed) — tl;dr: our culture increasingly plays outline, but scraping and otherwise getting access to the data stream of online culture sees researchers struggling in the face of data volumes and Twitter et al.’s commercial imperatives.
- The Post-Productive Economy (Kevin Kelly) — The farmers in rural China have chosen cell phones and twitter over toilets and running water. To them, this is not a hypothetical choice at all, but a real one. and they have made their decision in massive numbers. Tens of millions, maybe hundreds of millions, if not billions of people in the rest of Asia, Africa and South America have chosen Option B. You can go to almost any African village to see this. And it is not because they are too poor to afford a toilet. As you can see from these farmers’ homes in Yunnan, they definitely could have at least built an outhouse if they found it valuable. (I know they don’t have a toilet because I’ve stayed in many of their homes.) But instead they found the intangible benefits of connection to be greater than the physical comforts of running water.
- Crayon Creatures — We will bring to life the kid’s artwork by modeling a digital sculpture and turning it into a real object using 3D Printing technology.
Search Fail, Recruiter Data, Ed Web, and Enterprise IT Yuks
- WTF — when keyword matching fails.
- The Best Recruiters, Pt II (Elaine Wherry) — almost all these tips are relevant to the cold-call “hey, you don’t know me but …” email messages you’ll have to send at some point in your life. Read, learn, obey.
- Best Websites for Teaching And Learning — as decided by the American Association of School Librarians. Lots of these I didn’t know existed but can see being used in class, e.g. Gamestar Mechanic which walks kids through the process of creating a game, teaching them how to think about games even as they produce one.
- Enterprise IT Adoption Curve — so very very true.
Caching Pages, Node NLP, Digital Native are Clueless, and Wal-Mart Loves Your Calendar
- Cache Them If You Can (Steve Souders) — the percentage of resources that are cacheable has increased 4% during the past year. Over that same time the number of requests per page has increased 12% and total transfer size has increased 24%.
- How Millennials Search — Statistically significant findings suggest that millennial generation Web searchers proceed erratically through an information search process, make only a limited attempt to evaluate the quality or validity of information gathered, and may perform some level of ‘backfilling’ or adding sources to a research project before final submission of the work. Never let old people tell you that “digital natives” actually know what they’re doing.
- Walmart Buys A Facebook App for Calendar Access (Ars Technica) — The Social Calendar app and its file of 110 million birthdays and other events, acquired from Newput Corp., will give Walmart the ability to expand its efforts to dig deeper into the lives of customers. Interesting to think that by buying a well-loved app, a company could get access to your Facebook details whether you Like them or not.
The fourth in a series looking at the major themes of this year's TOC conference.
Several overriding themes permeated this year's Tools of Change for Publishing conference. The fourth in a series looking at five of the major themes, here we take a look at discovery in publishing.
Google+ Ruining Search, C64 Demos, Telegraph Hacks, and QR Meh
- Google+ Is Going to Mess Up The Internet (ReadWriteWeb) — Google thought I would prefer to click through Google+ to find my article than to go straight to it. Severe rip of the negative effects G+ has on the search experience. (via Hacker News)
- Behind the Scenes of a C64 Demo (Chaos Communications Congress) — the tricks they use when fitting all that goodness into a 64K machine. Video and slides. (via Reddit Programming)
- Gentleman Hacker’s 1903 Lulz (New Scientist) — how Marconi’s telegraph demo was haxx0red. (via Imran Ali)
- Results of a QR Trial (Brooklyn Museum) — At first glance this looks like a win, right? Well, that’s true until you compare pre and post QR code use. These numbers are a little tricky for various reasons, but when looking at Gallery Tag as an example we saw a five-fold drop in use .and five-fold is a very conservative extrapolation from the stats. Cold water in the face to wake you up from those dreams of 2d-barcode glory.
- Terrier IR — open source (Mozilla) text search engine, now with Hadoop support.
- s3ql — open source (GPLv3) Linux filesystem which stores its data on Google Storage, Amazon S3, or OpenStack. (via Adam Shand)
Spatial Search, Exposing Your Phone's Perfidity, School Unconference, and Wikipedia Viz
- VP Trees — a data structure for fast spatial searching. A form of nearest neighbour, useful for melodies (PDF) and image retrieval (PDF) and poetry. (via Reddit)
- iYou — iTunes plugin to show you all the stuff your phone collects about you.
- Bar Camps in Primary Schools — NZ teacher deploys bar camps among students. Great things happen.
- Realtime Wikipedia Edits — fascinating and hypnotic and inspirational and appalling and irrelevant all at once.