- Makerspaces Coming to Libraries (Wired) — [W]hile I’m just as sentimental about the primacy of hard copy, the librarians aren’t. As they all tell me, their job is helping with access to knowledge—not all of which comes in codex form and much of which is deeply social. Libraries aren’t just warehouses for documents; they’re places to exchange information.
- Rolling Stone Feature on Randall Munroe — When you’re talking about pure research, every year it’s a longer trip to the cutting edge. Students have to spend a larger percentage of their careers catching up to the people who have gone before them. My solution to that is to tackle problems that are so weird that no one serious has ever spent any time on them. (via BoingBoing)
- Not Safe for Working On (Dan Kaminsky) — some things that needed to be said, and which couldn’t have been said better, about security, victim shaming, and separating the 2% from the 98%.
- Generative eBook Covers — very cool (with code) system for programmatically generating aesthetic and interesting ebook covers. I particularly like the face-recognition-in-engravings look.
- xkcd 576 Made Real — a Kiwi coder used the API to the local equivalent of eBay to build a real-life version of xkcd cartoon 576. You can follow its daily purchases on Twitter.
- Linus Torvalds’ Greatest Invention (Dominus) — slides to a talk Mark Jason Dominus gave to the Philadelphia Linux User Group. I like to see informed critical appreciation of technical works like this.
- The Design of Approximation Algorithms — textbook available for free download. (via Hacker News)
Robot Trades, Quirky Adventures, Tabular Data Library, and It's Hard to be Evil
- The Tracks of Bizarre Robot Traders (The Atlantic) — I love the idea that these mysterious effect-less trades might simply be there to slow down competitors’ analytic systems because every millisecond matters.
- MS Paint Adventures — a weird mashup of MS Paint and text adventure games.
- tablib — a format-agnostic tabular dataset library for Python. (via joshua on delicious)
- Password Reuse (XKCD) — so very true.
Cute Math, Fast Slo-Mo, Open Source HVAC, xkcd Hack
- Inside-Out Multiplication Table — very cool way to view the patterns of factors. Math is beauty with subscripts.
- High-Speed Camera — capture 100 frames at up to 1M frames/second. The sample videos, of a bullet liquefying on impact and a shotgun string boiling past, are stunning. The Makezine high-speed photography kit is the cheap amateur version.
- Open Source Energy Management for Commercial Buildings — open source project to enable interoperable applications for integrated Building Automation Systems (BAS). From NovusEdge. I wonder how they’re planning to spread their open source and use it to disrupt. (via earth2tech and timoreilly on Twitter)
- xkcd Knapsack Solution — for those of you who like literal Python geeking with your comics. Have a great weekend!
This morning’s XKCD, Latitude, spells out one of the reasons people will be weary of setting up continuous location trackers: the future self. The future self forgets that they are sharing their location and then act as if no one knows where they are going. In this case Megan’s friend tracks her stops at a sex shop, toy store, hardware store and finally the burn ward, telling a pretty clear story of a mistranslated kama sutra (ahem).