- Pirates Adopt H.264 — no more XViD encoded avi files, now it’s x264. I’m impressed by the rigid rules and structure of The Scene.
- YouTube’s ContentID Disputes Are Judged By The Accuser (Andy Baio) — the last couple years have seen a dramatic rise in Content ID abuse, using it for purposes that it was never intended. Scammers are using Content ID to steal ad revenue from YouTube video creators en masse, with some companies claiming content they don’t own, deliberately or not. The inability to understand context and parody regularly leads to “fair use” videos getting blocked, muted or monetized.
- The Month of 50% in Mobile (Luke Wroblewski) — 47.6% of mobile Internet users use native mobile apps and 47.5% use the Web browser on their devices. This is the first time (in ComScore data) native apps have had more use than the browser.
- Fake Unicode Consortium — excellent collection of better names for Unicode characters. My favourite: U+0CA0: MONOCLE OF DISAPPROVAL. (via Tom Christiansen)
ENTRIES TAGGED "video"
Video Encoding, Content Identification, Mobile Numbers, and Unicode Fun
- Interview: Hanno Sander on Robotics (Circuit Cellar) — this is what Mindstorms wants to be when it grows up. AAA++ for teaching kids. Hanno is a Kiwi Foo Camper.
- Context Needed: Benchmarks — Benchmarks fall into a few common traps because of under-reporting in context and lack of detail in results. The typical benchmark report doesn’t reveal the benchmark’s goal, full details of the hardware and software used, how the results were edited if at all, how to reproduce the results, detailed reporting on the system’s performance during the test, and an interpretation and explanation of the results. (via Jesse Robbins)
- Morris.js (GitHub) — a lightweight library that uses jQuery and Raphaël to make drawing time-series graphs easy.
- Bret Victor: Inventing on Principle (Vimeo) — the first 20m has amazing demos of a coding environment with realtime feedback. Must see this! (via Sacha Judd)
Build a Button, CMU iPad Course, Materials Conference, and Facebook IPO
- Beautiful Buttons for Bootstrap — cute little button creator, with sliders for hue, saturation, and “puffiness”.
- CMU iPad Course — iTunes U has the video lectures for a CMU intro to iPad programming.
- Inspiring Matter — the conference aims to bring together designers, scientists, artists and humanities people working with materials research and innovation to talk about how they work cross- or trans-disciplinarily, the challenges and tools they’ve found for working collaboratively, and the ways they find inspiration in their work with materials. London, April 2-3.
- Facebook’s S-1 Filing (SEC) — the Internets are now full of insights into Facebook’s business, for example Lance Wiggs’s observation that Facebook’s daily user growth is slowing. While 6-10% growth per quarter feels like a lot when annualized, it is getting close to being a normal company. Facebook is running out of target market, and especially target market with pockets deep enough to be monetised. But I think that’s the last piece of Facebook IPO analysis that I’ll link to. Tech Giant IPOs are like Royal Weddings: the people act nice but you know it’s a seething roiling pit of hate, greed, money, and desperation that goes on a bit too long so by the end you just want to put an angry chili-covered porcupine in everyone’s anus and set them all on fire. But perhaps I’m jaded.
Copyright, Copyright, Patents, and Copyright
- No Copyright Intended (Andy Baio) — Thoughtful piece on how copyright ignorance may lead to copyright reform. Everyone over age 12 when YouTube launched in 2005 is now able to vote. What happens when—and this is inevitable—a generation completely comfortable with remix culture becomes a majority of the electorate, instead of the fringe youth? What happens when they start getting elected to office? (Maybe “I downloaded but didn’t share” will be the new “I smoked, but didn’t inhale.”)
- How to Fix Copyright — new book, written by Google’s Senior Copyright Counsel, which lays out the confused current copyright laws and the ways in which they aren’t working. As Cory’s review says, Patry offers two important (but rare) commodities: facts, and solutions. The solutions are simple: stop making copyright laws until you know whether the ones you have are working; and require strong evidence for further changes.
- Oblivious Supreme Court Poised to Legalize Medical Patents — Prometheus claims much more than its specific testing process. It claims a physician administering thiopurine to a patient can infringe its patent merely by being aware of the scientific correlation disclosed in the patent—even if the doctor doesn’t act on the patent’s recommendations. (via Ed Yong)
- You Have Downloaded — site which collects information from trackers and lets you see what was downloaded from a particular IP address. One ISP in NZ wrote: I plugged in the IPs for the last 6 infringement notices I received as an ISP. It turned up: a) all of the downloads that these IPs had been pinged for; b) as many downloads again that they had not been pinged for.
May 9, 1961 marked the first public appearance of Newt Minow as FCC
chairman, where he achieved immortality by raising the claim that
television was a "vast wasteland." The phrase entered American life so
thoroughly that citing it has become almost reflexive in media
commentary over the intervening fifty years. Last night, the Berkman
Center held a gala event re-examining media, and the main guest of
honor was…Newt Minow!
Personal Video, Open Source Sensors, Bad Science No Biscuit, and Playing the Odds
- Skate Through NYC With A GoPro — this is the first I’ve seen of the GoPro cameras, which are two dimensions of clever. First, it’s video instrumentation for activities where we haven’t had this before. Second, it’s clever specialization of the Flip-style solid-state recording videocameras. (via Infovore)
- Pulse Sensor — open source heart rate sensor project on Kickstarter. DIY hardware has made the quantified self phenomenon possible; look for many more gadgets that build your personal data cloud. (via Brady Forrest)
- Science’s Bad Ideas (Peter Griffin) — a recap of a lecture by Lord Robert Winston where he the dark side of science and catalogues numerous instances where scientific progress has been accompanied by unforeseen consequences, ethical atrocities and detrimental impacts on society. [...] The overall message is that science can’t remain aloof from society, that scientists must engage and better understand the needs and concerns of society as they introduce new technologies that could bring about profound changes.
- A Game With a Windfall For a Knowing Few — gambling is a tax on bad math, but poorly designed games sometimes rewards those who are good at math. Because of a quirk in the rules, when the jackpot reaches roughly $2 million and no one wins, payoffs for smaller prizes swell dramatically, which statisticians say practically assures a profit to anyone who buys at least $100,000 worth of tickets. During these brief periods – “rolldown weeks’’ in gambling parlance – a tiny group of savvy bettors, among them highly trained computer scientists from MIT and Northeastern University, virtually take over the game. Just three groups, including the Selbees, claimed 1,105 of the 1,605 winning Cash WinFall tickets statewide after the rolldown week in May, according to lottery records. (via Hacker News)
Buying a Micro, Education Entrepreneurship, Faceted Search, Vector-Graphics Scripting
- Electric Dreams – The 1980s ‘The Micro Home Computer Of 1982′ (YouTube) — from a reality show where a gadget-using family are forced to relive 30 years of technology invention, one year each day. This clip is where they’re forced to choose a microcomputer from the rush of early hobbyist machines in the 80s: Spectrum, Dragon-32, etc. (via Skud)
- K-12 Entrepreneurship: Slow Entry, Distant Exit (PDF) — paper (from the set I pointed to yesterday) laying out in start terms the difficulty of educational entrepreneurship. Keeping the lights on and a teacher in every classroom consumes most of the annual money spent on education so that little is left over to generate or try new tools, techniques or approaches. Out of every dollar spent on education in 2005, only 3.5 cents was spent on materials, tools and services. Subtract the big mandatory purchases of textbooks and annual testing, and one is left with almost no free funds to deploy creatively. With class size reduction and teacher incentive pay ramping up around the country, the pressure on these budget lines continues to increase, reducing the dollars available for investment in breakthrough tools and services.
- Here Be Dragons (Bryan O’Sullivan) — the thorny problem of printing floating point numbers. Prior to Steele and White’s “How to print floating-point numbers accurately”, implementations of printf and similar rendering functions did their best to render floating point numbers, but there was wide variation in how well they behaved. A number such as 1.3 might be rendered as 1.29999999, for instance, or if a number was put through a feedback loop of being written out and its written representation read back, each successive result could drift further and further away from the original.
Apple has patented new technology to disable cellphone video based on external signals from public venues. Now imagine if that same technology were deployed by repressive regimes.
YouTube's Greg Schechter on HTML5's place in the video world.
HTML5 video still needs work, but YouTube's Greg Schechter says it's heading in a good direction. In this interview, Schechter explains how HTML5 video introduces new needs and new opportunities.
Kindle List, Insider Knowledge, Google News Archive Archived, and Work Week in Video
- Delivereads — genius idea, a mailing list for Kindles. Yes, if you can send email then you can be a Kindle publisher. (via Sacha Judd)
- Abnormal Returns From the Common Stock Investments of Members of the U.S. House of Representatives — We measure abnormal returns for more than 16,000 common stock transactions made by approximately 300 House delegates from 1985 to 2001. Consistent with the study of Senatorial trading activity, we find stocks purchased by Representatives also earn significant positive abnormal returns (albeit considerably smaller returns). A portfolio that mimics the purchases of House Members beats the market by 55 basis points per month (approximately 6% annually). (via Ellen Miller)
- Google News Archive Ends — hypothesizes that old material was “too hard” to make sense of, but that seems unlikely to me. More likely is that it wasn’t useful enough to their machine learning efforts. Newspapers can have their scanned/OCRed content for free now the program is being closed.
- Week Report 310 — BERG’s first (that I’ve seen) video report of the week, and it’s a cracker. No newsreel, just some really clever evocation of the mood of the place and the nature of the projects. I continue to be impressed by the BERG crew’s conscious creation of culture.