Weekly Web Harvest (weekly)

  • “Maybe that doesn’t seem like a lot, but consider what the city pays to keep it running: $9 a month in hosting costs. “I figured that even if it only led to a few fire hydrants being shoveled out, that could be the difference between life or death in a fire, so it was worth doing,” Michaels-Ober says. And because the CFA team open-sourced the code, meaning they made it freely available for anyone to copy and modify, other cities can adapt it for practically pennies.”

    tags: coding literacy programming computational thinking computer science socialmedia weekly

    • It turns out that rather than increasing the number of kids who can crank out thousands of lines of JavaScript, we first need to boost the number who understand what code can do.
    • the greatest contribution the young programmers bring isn’t the software they write. It’s the way they think. It’s a principle called “computational thinking,” and knowing all of the Java syntax in the world won’t help if you can’t think of good ways to apply it.
      • depending on who’s defining it . . . probably not computational at all . . . broader than that
  • “The world of the future will be an ever more demanding struggle against the limitations of our intelligence,” Wiener wrote in 1964

    tags: future past technology weekly

    • Wiener refused, for ethical reasons, to accept research contracts from the military or from corporations seeking to exploit his ideas. Since the military and corporations were the main sources of research support, Wiener’s defiance hindered his progress during a period of unprecedented technological advance.
    • . He would snore sonorously through academic meetings and enthusiastically pick his nose while delivering lectures
  • ““The astrophotography group on Flickr alone has over 68,000 images,” say Dustin Lang at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and a couple of pals. These and other images represent a vast source of untapped data for astronomers.

    tags: astronomy flickr data socialmedia mit technology web weekly twitter

  • “Gabby and I begin the delicate and confusing process that is closing out her part of the check without jeopardizing my Endless Appetizers. She tells me that the next jailer to keep me locked in a mozzarella prison of my own perverse design will be a woman named Marisa. I ask Gabby if she likes Marisa and she tells me she does; also, multiple times, that Marisa is an Italian-American. Perhaps Gabby is implying to me that Marisa will approve of my choice of app: i bastoncini di mozzarella, as they are called in her ancestral home.”

    tags: weekly friday appetizers

  • “Pulling a page from author and software developer Jon Udell, Hanselman encourages you to “conserve your keystrokes.” What does this mean? He explains by example:

    If Brian emails me a really interesting question about ASP.net … and I send him back an exciting and long, five-paragraph with a code sample email that solves his problem, I just gave him the gift of 10,000 of my keystrokes. But there is a finite number of keystrokes left in my hands before I die, and I am never going to get those keystrokes back and I’ve just gifted them to Brian. And I don’t even know if he reads that email. So what should I do to multiply these keystrokes given that there is a finite number of those keystrokes left in my hands? I write a blog post and I mail him the link. Then after I’m dead, my keystrokes multiple—every time I get a page view that’s 5,000 keystrokes that I did not have to type.”

    tags: weekly productivity management

  • “Angry that I’d foiled his plan to have me arrested for drug possession, Fly had a local florist send a gaudy floral arrangement in the shape of a giant cross to my home, complete with a menacing message that addressed my wife and was signed, “Velvet Crabs.”

    tags: weekly security krebs

  • “A large body of political scientists and political psychologists now concur that liberals and conservatives disagree about politics in part because they are different people at the level of personality, psychology, and even traits like physiology and genetics.

    That’s a big deal. It challenges everything that we thought we knew about politics—upending the idea that we get our beliefs solely from our upbringing, from our friends and families, from our personal economic interests, and calling into question the notion that in politics, we can really change (most of us, anyway).”

    h/t Molly R

    tags: weekly thought opinions conservatives

  • “The roots of weirdness lie in the noun wyrd, an Old English term that pops up in Beowulf and denotes the (usually grim) demands of destiny. The adjective first appears in the phrase weird sisters, which was used by Scottish poets to describe the classical Fates before Shakespeare attached the term to the witches of Macbeth. But Shakespeare’s spelling of weird is, well, a bit weird—“weyrd”, “weyward”, and “weyard” appear in the first folio, but never “weird”. These alternate spellings, again, suggest the term wayward, a word used by Shakespeare to denote the capricious refusal to follow rule or reason. “

    tags: weird etymology weekly wayward thoughtvectors

  • “To this end, Eno has come up with words like “scenius,” which describes the power generated by a group of artists who gather in one place at one time. (“Genius is individual, scenius is communal,” Eno told the Guardian, in 2010.) It suggests that the quality of works produced in a certain time and place is more indebted to the friction between the people on hand than to the work of any single artist.””

    tags: weekly genius collaboration

  • “Yet you’ve probably heard people telling you that they’re an ENFJ (extraverted intuitive feeling judging), an INTP (introverted intuitive thinking perceiving), or another one of the 16 types drawn from his work, and you may have even been given this test in a professional setting. Here’s an explanation of why these labels are so meaningless — and why no organization in the 21st century should rely on the test for anything.”

    tags: weekly personality myers briggs research

  • “With all those photos being taken, chances are you and I have at one point accidentally wandered into someone else’s frame. It’s likely, however, that you’ll never really know you’ve photo-bombed someone’s shot. That’s why I was surprised by a Twitter message that I received out of the blue from a photographer I’ve never met before named Anthony Kurtz, which I share below:

    tags: weekly photograph serendipity

  • “”This is really amazing,” Steffel wrote on Reddit. “Everyone [of] you have made my day. All I wanted was a nice picture. What I received was a lot of love and support from a bunch of strangers. Along with a lot of great photos, drawings and paintings. Thanks everyone!”

    The response Steffel got from redditors was overwhelming and gave he and wife comfort in their time of sadness. Steffel told BuzzFeed he’s responded to many of the messages of condolences.

    tags: reddit weekly example

  • tags: history rome roman empire maps data orbis weekly roma tweet

  • “Craig Layman, an ecology professor at North Carolina State University, called Lauren’s work “one of the most influential sixth-grade science projects ever conducted.” He said it demonstrated something scientists should have done years before.

    tags: science lionfish lion fish research weekly

  • “And yet, while Scheper-Hughes doubted the literal truth of the tales, she was unwilling to dismiss the rumors. She subscribed to an academic school of thought that swore off imposing Western notions of absolute or objective truth. “

    tags: truth lies thoughtvectors organ human market detective weekly

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.