Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-22

New Study Finds Citizen Scientists Can Be Very Accurate | Mental Floss A new analysis of the work of these citizen scientists shows that trusting untrained strangers with scientific data isn’t a terrible idea. As the study in Conservation Biology notes, overall, volunteers classified 98 percent of the images accurately, based on a comparison with expert answers.  dy/dan » Blog Archive » The Difference Between Sketching and Graphing Desmos just added sketching into its Activity Builder. That was the result of months of collaboration between our design, engineering, and teaching teams. That was also the result of our conviction that informal mathematical understanding is underrepresented in math classes and massively underrepresented in computer-based mathematics classes. We want to help students express their mathematical ideas and get feedback on those ideas, especially the ones that are informal and under development. That’s why we built sketch before multiple choice, for example. I’m stating this commitment publicly, hoping that one or more of you will help us live up to it. ITP ITP is a two-year graduate program located in the Tisch School of the Arts whose mission is to explore the imaginative use of communications technologies — how they might augment, improve, and bring delight and art into people’s lives. Perhaps the best way to describe us is as a Center for […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-15

How Technology Hijacks People’s Minds — from a Magician and Google’s Design Ethicist — Medium This is far more than “technology” . . . The “most empowering” menu is different than the menu that has the most choices. But when we blindly surrender to the menus we’re given, it’s easy to lose track of the difference: growth & development – gangster disciples 12. HOW MANY STEPS TO GANGSTA CITY? 63 13. HOW MANY BACK? 36 WHY? YOU ARE LOOKING IN A MIRROR. 14. WHAT’S UNDER THE DRAGON’S RIGHT FOOT? A 6-POINT STAR 15. HOW DO YOU KILL THE DRAGON? WITH A BLUE SWORD 16. WHERE IS GANGSTA CITY LOCATED? IN THE SKY BEYOND THE NORTH STAR 17. WHATCHA CLAIMING? 63 IGD OR 63 BGD Programming Doesn’t Require Talent or Even Passion — Medium * I actually hate programming, but I love solving problems. * There are people who actually like programming. I don’t understand why they like programming. * I’m not a real programmer. I throw together things until it works then I move on. The real programmers will say “Yeah it works but you’re leaking memory everywhere. Perhaps we should fix that.” I’ll just restart Apache every 10 requests. To train future ed-tech leaders, higher ed needs new discipline, some say “The report also called for colleges to train […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-08

Encouraging the Impulse to Annotate – Todd’s Brain Glossing with social media involves the creation of conversational “layers” which adhere to the original text and produce a richer cultural artifact so that the original text is not obscured, but enhanced. Gloss suggests the multiple veneers that adolescents create to make texts their own. Glossing also denotes the slipperiness of the online world—the Internet being a frictionless distribution system. A Video Game That Tailors Its Terrors to Your Anxiety “Affectiva’s emotion-sensing software watches the player’s facial expressions for signs of emotional distress. The heart rate sensors, on the other hand, pick up indications of physiological distress.” So, in a way, it’s a different experience, and you could combine both for an even more responsive game. In Oracle v. Google, a Nerd Subculture Is on Trial | Motherboard “The G part stands for GNU?” Alsup asked in disbelief. “Yes,” said Schwartz on the stand. “That doesn’t make any sense,” said the 71-year-old Clinton appointee. Introduction :: Eloquent JavaScript There will be times when reading this book feels terribly frustrating. If you are new to programming, there will be a lot of new material to digest. Much of this material will then be combined in ways that require you to make additional connections. It is up to you to make the necessary effort. When you […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-01

BBC – Future – Facebook is a growing and unstoppable digital graveyard The numbers of the dead on Facebook are growing fast. By 2012, just eight years after the platform was launched, 30 million users with Facebook accounts had died. That number has only gone up since. Some estimates claim more than 8,000 users die each day. At some point in time, there will be more dead Facebook users than living ones. Facebook is a growing and unstoppable digital graveyard. RetroFab: A Design Tool for Retrofitting Physical Interfaces using Actuators, Sensors and 3D Printing | Autodesk Research RetroFab, an end-to-end design and fabrication environment that allows non-experts to retrofit physical interfaces. SVG beyond mere shapes – OpenVis talk really nice work and in reveal js and on github Ocean Fleets Ltd. 1974/75 – Context is Half the Work The conflict adversely affected Levantis’ relationship with the rest of the crew. Reflecting on the whole experience, a representative of Ocean Fleets said that the presence of an artist was indeed well received, but had no lasting effect on the company, noting: “If we had wanted some kind of sociologist aboard, I’d have hired a sociologist.” Making work into an artform | Little AtomsArtist Placemennt Group In 1966, whilst working as a part-time lecturer at Central Saint Martins School of Art, he […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-04-24

The Lost Wanderers — Anthropology and Algorithms — Medium Neurath condemns the third wanderer for his “pseudo-rationalist” pretensions: in the interest of appearing rational, he has forced a conclusion out of insufficient evidence “on the basis of inadequate premises of whose deficiencies he is unaware.” Even worse, because he thinks he has decided rationally, he is supremely confident in his decision, even though it is no more justified than any other. The hero of the story for Neurath is wanderer number four, who recognizes the limits of her rationality and supplements it with an auxiliary motive—an arbitrary aid to making decisions among options that, rationally speaking, are all equivalent.


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-04-17

The powerful hacker culture ~ Stephen Downes If you want progress, Lemire argues, “you need people who thrive when they solve hard practical problems.” Hackers thrive by getting something done. “And once it is done, academics will take the credit.” – h/t Downes Harvard. I Mean, Really. | HESA The largest ever university capital campaign was concluded in 2011 at Stanford University, which raised $6.2 billion.  Naturally, when Harvard launched its campaign in 2013, it set a target of $6.5 billion ($8.1 billion Canadian), of which it raised $2.8 billion during the “quiet” phase.  Last week the Crimson broke the story that the $6.5 billion target had been reached.  The University declined to comment, noting that it only announces updates every October, but if true this means that with two years to go, the campaign is on track to raise something on the order of $10 billion by the time it finishes in 2018. elnuevomuseo.org | MUSEUM Nuevo Museo de Arte Contempora?neo (NuMu) is the first and only contemporary art museum in Guatemala, dedicated exclusively to supporting, exhibiting, and documenting contemporary art. Founded in 2012, NuMu is an artist-run space, co- founded and directed by artists Jessica Kaire? and Stefan Benchoam.


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-04-10

How minimalism brought me freedom and joy / Boing Boing I have 238,795 unread emails in my inbox. Emails are a suggestion but not an obligation. Body-hackers: the people who turn themselves into cyborgs | Art and design | The Guardian Ophthalmologists strongly advise against trying this at home: they say a single application of Ce6 can cause retinal haemorrhage and central retinal vein occlusion. Image from page 758 of “A text-book of animal physiology, with introductory chapters on general biology and a full treatment of reproduction ..” (1889) | Flickr – Photo Sharing! exposition on insanity that has been issued in this country by an Amorioun alienist, and, furthermore, it is the most instructive and assimilable that can be placed at present in the hands of the student uninitiated in psychiatry. The instruction con- tained within its pages is a food thoroughly pre- pared for mental digestion; rich in the condiments that stimulate the appetite for learning, and sub- stantial in the more solid elements tiiat eular^re and strengthen the intellect.”—New Orleans Medi- cal and Surgical Journal. “ Paul Ford: What is Code? | Bloomberg Can you tell me what code is?” “No,” I said. “First of all, I’m not good at the math. I’m a programmer, yes, but I’m an East Coast programmer, not one of these serious […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-04-03

9 Elephants in the (Class)Room That Should “Unsettle” Us — Modern Learning — Medium We know that most of our students will forget most of the content that they “learn” in school. As Matthew Lieberman from UCLA notes, “For more than 75 years, studies have consistently found that only a small fraction of what is learned in the classroom is retained even a year after learning.” Jacob Torrey – LANGSEC: Taming the Weird Machines The complexity of our computing systems (both software and hardware) have reached such a degree that data must treated as formally as code. The Superbowl of Protest will be in Cleveland this Year – Global Guerrillas The Federal government gave Cleveland a $50 m security grant to prepare for the convention.  With this money, the city plans to field 4-5,000 officers drawn from around the state.  Here’s what it they plan to equip them with: Commons:Picture of the Year/2015/R1/Gallery – Wikimedia Commons Wikipedia’s photos of the year contest – some really amazing work and CC licensed. The next hot job in Silicon Valley is for poets – The Washington Post Even mundane tasks demand creative effort, as writers try to build personality quirks into the most rote activities. At the start-up x.ai, a Harvard theater graduate is tasked with deciding whether its scheduling bots, Amy and […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-03-27

MIT Media Lab Changes Software Default to FLOSS* — MIT MEDIA LAB — Medium Kind of insane that there was ever a need for ‘permission’ to release their own work. This student put 50 million stolen research articles online. And they’re free. – The Washington Post “There are many ways to argue that copyright infringement is not theft, but even if it is, it is justified in this case,” she said in an instant-message interview via Google. “All content should be copied without restriction. But for education and research, copyright laws are especially damaging.” What I learned from Om and Hossein These two people who I only know because they blog, are right — but then I thought — no I don’t agree. And yes, it’s something I’ve been struggling with, but for me the struggle is over. I write my blog not because I want to write a “good” blog post, or even one that’s read by a lot of people. And my own self is not scattered, it’s right here, and as long as I live it will continue to be here. And my online self doesn’t exist for the benefit of others, it’s here to help my real self develop his thinking and create a trail of ideas and feelings and experiences that I can look back […]


Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-03-20

Angola’s Wikipedia Pirates Are Exposing the Problems With Digital Colonialism | Motherboard Wikimedia and Facebook have given Angolans free access to their websites, but not to the rest of the internet. So, naturally, Angolans have started hiding pirated movies and music in Wikipedia articles and linking to them on closed Facebook groups, creating a totally free and clandestine file sharing network in a country where mobile internet data is extremely expensive. Why does HTML think “chucknorris” is a color? – Stack Overflow How come certain random strings produce various colors when entered as background colors in HTML? For example: test Data Structure + Narrative Chart = StoryLine? | OUseful.Info, the blog… Dada Portal | The Ridership Rachenitsa Each musical beat is a day, as is each vertical line. One musical instrument represents the daily ridership of Chicago buses, and the other represents the daily ridership of New York subways. (Both are measured at fare collection points.) BioBIKE Portal One solution is for biologists to become familiar with a few tools, such as Blast. This gets the researcher from one point to another, like flying high above the terrain. Some places are impossible to get to in this way. Another solution is to procure the services of a computer programmer. This may produce new tools appropriate to the problem at hand, […]