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80 Million Tiny Images

A visualization of all the nouns in the English language arranged by semantic meaning. [NSFW words included!] [more inside]
posted by carsonb on Jan 15, 2009 - 40 comments

 

It's only a yellow line. How hard can it be?

The computer generated first-down line in American football is something we take for granted these days. However, the logistics required to make this work is pretty complex. At the very least, have you considered this: if it's computer generated on a moving image, how do they draw it under the people running around on the field, and not over them? And it gets a bit more complicated than this. "Here are some of the problems that have to be solved in order for this system to work: [more inside]
posted by SpacemanStix on Jan 6, 2009 - 52 comments

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

The National Security Agency is building a data center in San Antonio that’s the size of the Alamodome. Microsoft has opened an 11-acre data center a few miles away. Coincidence? Not according to author James Bamford, who probably knows more about the NSA than any outsider. Bamford's new book reports that the biggest U.S. spy agency wanted assurances that Microsoft would be in San Antonio before it moved ahead with the Texas Cryptology Center. Bamford notes that under current law, the NSA could legally tap into Microsoft’s data without a court order. Whatever you do, don't take pictures of it the spy building unless you want to be taken in for questioning.
posted by up in the old hotel on Dec 8, 2008 - 42 comments

Reuse

Computer Art
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Sep 19, 2008 - 25 comments

Coming from Uranus to check my style

Another dimension, new galaxy - J.C.R. Licklider was one of the most influential people in the history of computer science . Dr. Joseph Carl Robnett Licklider (or “Lick”), was the Director of ARPA’s Information Processing Techniques Office and from 1963-64 put in place the funding priorities which would lead to the Internet, and the invention of the mouse, windows and hypertext. In 1960 he was writing about Man-computer symbiosis and The Computer as a Communications Device . He also wrote epic memos such as his 1963 memo to “Members and Affiliates of the Intergalactic Computer Network
posted by Smedleyman on Sep 12, 2008 - 12 comments

Data-Driven Enhancement of Facial Attractiveness

Data-Driven Enhancement of Facial Attractiveness
posted by phrontist on Sep 8, 2008 - 39 comments

DR. SBAITSO WAS MY ONLY FRIEND.

DR. SBAITSO WAS MY ONLY FRIEND.
posted by chrismear on Jul 9, 2008 - 45 comments

Learn the game that adults play in private--and use it against them!

Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble! A "board game" where you gather a gang of girls in the roaring 20s and taunt, fib, & flirt your way to high school domination! [more inside]
posted by juv3nal on Jun 19, 2008 - 10 comments

Nature's Design on Your Desktop

Designers spend about 90% of their waking life in front of a computer, so the most appealing genre for a wallpaper would be one that has beautiful design mixed with the all important aspect of being outdoors. At their best, desktop wallpapers bring animation to often lifeless computer screens, reflecting the personality of the user and acting as a calling card for creative talent. The Desktopography Project first arrived in 2005 as a place to download nature / topological themed wallpapers with edits from selected designers. They have just released their 2008 library.
posted by netbros on Jun 7, 2008 - 40 comments

An introduction to Bletchley Park

Bletchley Park: A WWII juggernaut. It decrypted German Enigma (try one!) and Japanese messages on an industrial scale in huts and blocks, had an outpost in Mombasa, and built one of the first modern computers (it helped that Alan Turing was on staff). Now a diverse museum with or without a funding problem, it generated yet more intrigue in 2000 when an Enigma was stolen, and hosts a rebuilt, working Colossus that launched a cipher challenge. Beating it wasn't easy! [more inside]
posted by jwells on Jun 5, 2008 - 36 comments

Not to be confused with the Glooper.

The Phillips Machine, also known as the Moniac, is a early analog computer for economic modeling with an unusual twist: all of the computation is done by water flowing through its pipes. The flows represent taxes, income, and so on, and the chambers represent balances held by various bodies. Floats attached to pens can provide graphical output such things as GDP and interest rates, and valves can be opened and shut to change the state of the system in real time. You can listen to a BBC radio segment on the origin of Phillips machine, or see a demonstration of one of the only extant working models at the University of Cambridge. [more inside]
posted by Upton O'Good on May 24, 2008 - 12 comments

Guernica

A 3D Exploration of Picasso's Guernica (flash movie via)
posted by Kronos_to_Earth on May 15, 2008 - 29 comments

Technological Darwinism

The Evolution of Computer & Video Games (Google video) The Evolution of Computer Commercials (video) The evolution of mobile phones (video)
posted by desjardins on May 14, 2008 - 10 comments

But Mom, it's for science!

foldit is a new computer game scientists have created that lets YOU help them make science!! [more inside]
posted by Koko on May 10, 2008 - 24 comments

Computer languages and facial hair

Computer languages and facial hair
posted by finite on Apr 30, 2008 - 19 comments

Generative Creativity

Generative Creativity is a course offered by the University of Sussex through their Informatics department. The lecture series discusses tools and techniques for generating graphics, music, jokes and riddles, and more.
posted by weston on Apr 7, 2008 - 7 comments

Duck-dragons, dancing raccoons, and robots

Inspired by this earlier post, I thought it was time to formally introduce people to Rocky's Boots. [more inside]
posted by wanderingmind on Mar 28, 2008 - 12 comments

Notch tubing without a notcher.

Cope pipe without a jig. Enter a few parameters and get a pdf that will give you a printable pattern that will allow you to notch tubing for welding or brazing to another pipe.
posted by Mitheral on Mar 15, 2008 - 35 comments

Blue Brain

Out of the Blue: "Can a thinking, remembering, decision-making, biologically accurate brain be built from a supercomputer?"
posted by homunculus on Mar 3, 2008 - 38 comments

Interfacing as humanly as possible

I'm not a computer programmer, but I love the thought and artistry that go into [computer] application design. [more inside]
posted by lonemantis on Jan 24, 2008 - 54 comments

ITAPPMONROBOT

"So, at our meeting earlier, you suggested building a robot. Is that something we can really do?" [more inside]
posted by CrunchyFrog on Dec 18, 2007 - 35 comments

High speed, wave-piercing catamaran

The USNS Swift (HSV-2) looks like something a Bond villian would own, but it's actually one of the most advanced ships owned by the US Navy. Highly manueverable and having a top speed of 51mph, it's heavily automated, capable of handling helicopters, carrying cargo, and launching both manned and unmanned vehicles -- all with only 42 people. It's assisted with relief efforts in Indonesia, Lebanon, and after Hurricane Katrina. But the best thing about the ship? It can be remote controlled through a web browser.
posted by QuestionableSwami on Nov 29, 2007 - 28 comments

HOMOPHONI

HOMOPHONI
posted by hama7 on Oct 7, 2007 - 37 comments

Lyon's Electronic Office

In October 1947, the directors of J. Lyons & Co (think - teashops, nippies, bakeries, ice-creams, steakhouses, hotels, Wimpy Bars and Dunkin' Donuts), decided to take an active role in promoting the commercial development of computers. In 1951 the LEO I computer was operational and ran the world's first regular routine office computer job.
posted by tellurian on Oct 1, 2007 - 13 comments

Won't You Be My Virtual Neighbor?

Virtual Friendship and the New Narcissism. Examining the social rules and norms, as well as the pitfalls, of electronic "friending" (yes, it's a verb now - or is it a gerund?). Via.
posted by amyms on Sep 24, 2007 - 54 comments

Half of he Universe

The Horizon Simulation 70 billions particles : a new world record for a large scale simulation of the universe. [more inside]
posted by bru on Sep 18, 2007 - 29 comments

Where's my flying car?

Some Futurists got it Wrong. Others simply got it awesome and awesomer.
posted by Lord_Pall on Sep 10, 2007 - 41 comments

oscillate

Youscope is the result of hooking up an oscilloscope to a soundcard. [youtube] 3rd place winner in Short Films at Assembly 2007.
posted by oneirodynia on Aug 30, 2007 - 27 comments

The Happiest Gay Couple In All The World

Meet Rick and Steve : The Happiest Gay Couple In All The World. The animated series follows a gay couple, Rick and Steve, and other couples from their (fictional) town, West Lahunga Beach. Rick (voiced by Will Matthews from MTV's "Punk'd") is Steve's stay-at-home partner. He is a genius but very insecure. Steve (voiced by Peter Paige, best known as Emmet Honeycutt from "Queer As Folk") is a real estate broker and devotee of the gym. Margaret Cho lends her voice to the character Condie Ling. The computer generated animated series began airing on Logo on July 10, 2007, and is based on the 1999 short films of the same name from creator Quenton Allan Brocka. Let the comedic stereotyping begin! In animation form, anyway. (Episodes 1-5 available in three parts each from the first link.) Not quite safe for work. Or the easily offended.
posted by gummi on Aug 25, 2007 - 27 comments

Content Aware Image Resizing

Content Aware Image Resizing. Every year SIGGRAPH rolls around I get a reminder of how smart everyone else is, especially people who do computer graphics research. From Shai Avidan and Ariel Shamir. The algorithm resizes images non-uniformly and, well, somewhat magically.
posted by GuyZero on Aug 21, 2007 - 94 comments

"How I Became a Programmer"

"How I Became A Programmer" veers between linear biography and brain dump. The piece meanders through its theme, stopping along the way to flirt with word origins, family politics, the senior prom, Japan, airlines and military recruitment. Reading it, I felt trapped inside inside an extremely quirky -- yet recognizable (in a too-close-for-comfort way) -- mind. About half the time I yearned to tell him that he needs an editor; the other half, I was grateful that he didn't have one. Mostly, I'm amazed he HAD a date to the senior prom!
posted by grumblebee on Aug 18, 2007 - 52 comments

Wallpaper eye candy

Social Wallpaper. A community effort to classify, rank, and distribute high resolution images for use as computer wallpaper.
posted by Mitheral on Aug 12, 2007 - 24 comments

Skip to page 12 for some real fun. Philbrick must have owned stock in a battery factory.

In 1937-38, computer pioneer George Philbrick worked for the Foxboro Co. as an analyst. He had the radical idea of building an electronic analog computer to simulate the behaviour of hydraulic industrial equipment, so Foxboro customers could experiment with control systems without needing a pipe wrench. One of the world's first analog computers was ignominiously ferried around the U.S. in the back seat of Philbrick's car. Ironically, Philbrick didn't give his "Automatic Process Analyzer" a properly techy, pretentious nickname. He dubbed his one-eyed monster Polyphemus. (PDF) (prev)
posted by metasonix on Aug 11, 2007 - 9 comments

Don't bother looking at Wikipedia for an article about George Philbrick.

It has always been difficult to look up any information on the pioneers of computing. Even today, in the Internet age, one has trouble finding much about early computers--even on the ultimate computer network.

Consider the late George A. Philbrick. He was one of the titanic figures in electronic computing in the 1950s--mainly because of the company he founded, which was a major manufacturer (and pioneer) of the operational amplifier, at a time when an "op-amp" was made of vacuum tubes. Op-amps were used to build analog computers, which were widely used to simulate physical processes in the days when digital computers were either non-existent, or too slow and costly, for many kinds of simulation and process-control work. Op-amps, in chip form, are still widely used in electronics. Yet, despite his unquestioned status as a major pioneer of electronics, there was almost nothing on the Internet about Philbrick or his company.

Until 2005--when Joe Sousa decided to put up a website dedicated to Philbrick's legacy. Behold The Philbrick Archive.
posted by metasonix on Aug 4, 2007 - 10 comments

wood+marbles=six bits

Matthias Wandel's astounding wooding calculatory enigma. A woodworker turns his talents to binary mathematics via a cunning series of cats-eyes, clinkers and rounders. Plus many other marbled wonders. [this might be marbles]
posted by boo_radley on Jun 26, 2007 - 40 comments

Celebrity Computer Pitchmen

William Shatner hawked Commodores. IBM tried the cast of M*A*S*H, but without Alan Alda, who played Atari. Bill Cosby was a Texas Instruments man. Compaq gave us some funny ones with John Cleese. Bill Bixby pushed Tandy with a straight face. Buzz Aldrin, The Pointer Sisters, Tommy LaSorta, and Tip O'Neil pitched the Amiga. I guess I should include George Plimpton's Intellivision spots. Apple's covered by everyone else. Who did I miss?
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on Jun 21, 2007 - 41 comments

Hope me!

Computer Hope The location for free online computer support and computer related information. Computer Hope has been designed to assist all types of computer users with any of their computer related questions as well as a great location to learn more about your computer and its hardware and software.
posted by konolia on May 13, 2007 - 14 comments

Douglas Crockford Teaches JavaScript

Douglas Crockford, leading JavaScript Architect for Yahoo!, has been teaching a series of classes on JavaScript programming for other Yahoo! employees.
The JavaScript Programming Language [4 video clips: 1 (31 min) 2 (31 min) 3 (29min) 4 (20 min), presentation slides: zipped PPT]
An Inconvenient API: The Theory of the DOM [3 video clips: 1 (31 min) 2 (21 min) 3 (26 min), presentation slides: zipped PPT]
Advanced JavaScript [3 video clips: 1 (31 min) 2 (25 min) 3 (11 min), presentation slides: zipped PPT]
posted by ijoshua on May 10, 2007 - 27 comments

Sexy Librarian Updates

Jess does Ubuntu! I know nothing about Ubuntu, but Metafilter's own jessamyn has inspired me to try this on my old PC before I donate it to a friend. (via)
posted by ObscureReferenceMan on May 8, 2007 - 75 comments

Introducing Jikto

Klaatu barada...Jikto? First there was Nikto. Then along came Wikto. Last Saturday at Shmoocon Billy Hoffman introduced the world to Jitko, a client-side vulnerability scanner that exploits your browser & turns your PC into a platform for finding holes in computers across the Internet (or behind your firewall). Reactions were mixed. Does Jikto go too far?
posted by scalefree on Mar 28, 2007 - 11 comments

IBM 1401, A User's Manual

"In 1964, a computer - the IBM 1401 Data Processing System - arrived in Iceland, one of the very first computers to be imported into the country… The chief maintenance engineer for this machine was Jóhann Gunnarsson, my father. A keen musician, he learned of an obscure method of making music on this computer - a purpose for which this business machine was not at all designed… When the IBM 1401 was taken out of service in 1971, it wasn't simply thrown away like an old refrigerator, but was given a little farewell ceremony, almost a funeral, when its melodies were played for one last time. This "performance" was documented on tape along with recordings of the sound of the machine in operation." The whole story with samples, pictures and video at Jóhann Jóhannsson's site. [via]
posted by tellurian on Feb 26, 2007 - 15 comments

The Computer Generated Song Hye Kyo

The making of the Korean Actress "Song Hye Kyo" by Max Edwin Wahyudi. Computer graphics have come a hell of a long way.
posted by chunking express on Feb 22, 2007 - 38 comments

Now for some actual Bruce Schneier facts

You know Bruce Schneier the polymath security genius. Now meet Bruce Schneier the kind-hearted reviewer of local Minnesota restaurants. (He doesn't like to give bad reviews -- sounds like "security through obscurity" to me!)
[previously, also]
posted by grobstein on Feb 13, 2007 - 15 comments

Let's Play!

The Let's Play archive. Ever wanted to play a particular video game, but never got around to it? Let's Play features extensive walkthroughs of classic games like Silent Hill and Flashback complete with screenshots, videos, and commentary. Other games such as Darkseed and The Immortal are coming soon.
posted by clockworkjoe on Feb 2, 2007 - 7 comments

Hey Google... should I continue living?

The top questions people in China want to ask the internet...
posted by miss lynnster on Jan 13, 2007 - 48 comments

Judy Patch's Guide to Computer Hardware

Judy Patch's Guide to Computer Hardware
posted by GuyZero on Jan 12, 2007 - 36 comments

Like Dorvak, only better

The Colemak keyboard layout. Colemak is a new alternative to the QWERTY and Dvorak layouts. Designed for efficient and ergonomic touch typing in English, Colemak places the 10 most frequent letters of English (A,R,S,T,D,H,N,E,I,O) on the home row. Z,X,C are preserved in their QWERTY positions for easy copy and paste operations. It gets rid of the Caps Lock and replaces it with Backspace so you no longer need to move your hand off the home position to correct errors. Available for Windows/Mac/Linux/Unix it works with all standard keyboards, including laptops. [via: Projects], [Previously]
posted by Mitheral on Jan 8, 2007 - 91 comments

The Red Hill Guide to Computer Hardware

The Red Hill Guide is an amazingly detailed and well-written compendium of desktop hardware old and new, with a focus on PC and x86 compatibles. Look for your first CPU, hard drive or mainboard.
posted by loquacious on Jan 6, 2007 - 40 comments

A blast from the past

The Usborne Guide to Computer Games 1982 is full of fun ways to make traditional video games more exciting and contains some very accurate predictions.
posted by Bravocharlie on Dec 29, 2006 - 14 comments

Pr0n at Work = Addiction?

Pr0n at Work = Addiction? Spawning from such cases as a recent lawsuit with IBM over employee termination due to online sex chatting at work, recent debate over whether Internet abuse is a legitimate addiction, akin to alcoholism, is heating up. Attorneys say recognition by a court—whether in this or some future litigation—that Internet abuse is an uncontrollable addiction, and not just a bad habit, could redefine the condition as a psychological impairment worthy of protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Businesses would be required to allow medical leave and provide counseling. The condition could even make it into the next edition of the American Psychiatric Association's DSM, making it a full-blown neurosis. It wouldn't be a complete surprise, with a recent Stanford study showing that 14% of people state it would be "hard to stay away" from the net for a few days in a row.
posted by PreacherTom on Dec 14, 2006 - 49 comments

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