Gone in Six Characters: Short URLs Considered Harmful for Cloud Services [abstract] [pdf] [more inside]
The human microbiome is the subject of intense scrutiny for a variety of reasons -- probiotic yogurt, as a replacement for bathing, even down to the viral level -- but what we really want to know is How incredibly gross am I being by merely existing in the world? It turns out that the answer is Way gross -- like Pigpen, each of us sheds a unique cloud of bacteria that could conceivably be used to track criminals and to more precisely survey disease outbreaks.
Here is the Chrome extension Word Replacer II, and here is the Firefox extension FoxReplace. You can use them to replace words on web pages you visit with other words of your choosing. They could be used to duplicate the action of previous extension cloud-to-butt, or you might think of other things you could do with it. There's another extension for Chrome that automatically changes all uses of "millennials" to "snake people".
In December of last year, the NYC-based digital art nonprofit Rhizome successfully Kickstarted an online exhibition of cloud-emulated copies of the three CD-ROMs created by Theresa Duncan and based on young girls' everyday experiences. Last month, they were made available for play for a minimum of one year with probable extension. You can read about - and, thanks to embedding - play them at Rhizome itself and The Verge (or just play them right here). Note: you may have to wait in a queue. Also, you may have to wait a while for the computer running the game, which will be streamed to you, to start up.
Running your own high-end cloud gaming service on EC2 Playing games this way is actually quite economical – especially when comparing to purchasing a full-on gaming rig. Here are the costs you’ll need to consider: GPU Instance runs about $0.11/hr (on a Spot instance, regularly around $0.70/hr) Data transfer will around $0.09/GB, and at a sustained ~10mbit, itll cost you $0.41/hr (4.5GB/hr) This comes out to around $0.52/hr, not bad, for the cost of a $1000 gaming pc, you get ~1900 hours on much higher-end hardware!
Forbes brings us the case of multiple police departments across the nation that use PredPol (Predictive Policing) to help figure out where crimes are likely to occur in the future based on what crime occured at what time(when) and in what location (where). [more inside]
'The Cloud' and Other Dangerous Metaphors. What’s notable about dominant data metaphors is that they consistently compare data to naturally occurring physical resources. And just as the history of resource exploitation in America—from westward expansion through the Gold Rush, and beyond into modern-day debates about water and air rights—involves the appropriation of resources that belonged to someone else, online data collection policy treats personal information as a natural, inexhaustible good—ripe for exploitation in the name of economic growth and private gain.
ArsTechnica: "7 million Dropbox username/password pairs apparently leaked" Reports started to come in late Monday evening about the cloud file storage service Dropbox having been "hacked" by a group that was offering up the complete list of millions of email+password combinations for Bitcoin donations. Later reports, including a statement by Dropbox, point to the potential list being several million combinations culled from various third-party sites, and then tested against Dropbox. [more inside]
The New York Times calls David Mitchell's new novel, "The Bone Clocks," his most ambitious novel. This is significant because his other novels are fairly ambitious. [more inside]
CNBC: Apple, IBM in massive enterprise hardware, software partnership Tech behemoths Apple and IBM announced a partnership Tuesday that could make Apple—traditionally a consumer brand—a major player in the business market. IBM said it would create a class of more than 100 business applications exclusively for iPhones and iPads to run on Apple's iOS platform. In return, IBM will sell Apple's products with 100 industry-specific apps to its clients worldwide. [more inside]
Adobe's controversial Creative Cloud service stumbles and fails, leaving many who have paid for the service unable to use it for 24 hours. Adobe says the cause was an unexpected failure during database maintenance. Compensation may be possible.
James Mickens (previously) gives a talk at Monitorama 2014 about distributed computing and security.
Estonia, with a population of 1.3 million, might just have the most technologically forward-thinking government around.
Ars Technica reports on malicious extensions on the Chrome web browser, which install advertising-based malware that hijack links and inject ad content. Further speech recognition exploits (source) leave open the opportunity for malicious sites to record sound captured by the user's web browser without permission.
Making realistic weapons from earlier time periods* is all fine and dandy, but what about watching a blacksmith make Cloud's ridiculously large Buster sword from Final Fantasy VII, or the diamond sword from Minecraft? You can also browse all of Man At Arms videos as sorted into playlists, or watch the complete series. [more inside]
The words and phrases that distinguish men and women on Facebook. A word cloud visualization taken from a new study exploring personality, gender and age in language used on social media, published in PLOS ONE. [more inside]
"The information and technology ecosystem now represents around 10 per cent of the world's electricity generation, and it's hungry for filthy coal. In a report likely to inspire depression among environmentalists, and fluffy statements from tech companies, analyst firm Digital Power Group has synthesized numerous reports and crunched data on the real electricity consumption of our digital world." - IT now 10 percent of world's electricity consumption, report finds
Depending on who you ask, Cloud Rap either is "the best shit happening right now" or it doesn't exist. If you ask Killscreen, the genre owes a lot to Japanese Role Playing Games. But according to Philly cloud-rapper Lushlife, "All Rap Is Cloud Rap." [more inside]
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced a reorganization of the company today to focus on devices and services. Ballmer said that the goal was to have "One Microsoft" where "our strategy will focus on creating a family of devices and services for individuals and businesses that empower people around the globe at home, at work and on the go, for the activities they value most". [more inside]
Facebook versus The Cloud "I got a call, 'Jay, there's a cloud in the data center'," Parikh says. "'What do you mean, outside?'. 'No, inside'." The data centre in question.
cloud-to-butt is an open-source extension for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari that replaces all instances of "the cloud" with "my butt." Hilarity ensues. (via stellar.io) [more inside]
Microsoft is pushing hard to win adoption and support for Windows Azure Cloud services. How hard? Nerdcore hard. When you think "cloud", do you think rap? Someone at Microsoft does, apparently.
"Of all the things the Internet was expected to become, it is safe to say that a seed for the proliferation of backup diesel generators was not one of them." Power, Pollution and the Internet [sl NY Times]
Suppose I could offer you a choice of two technologies for watching TV online. Behind Door Number One sits a free-to-watch service that uses off-the-shelf technology and that buffers just enough of each show to put the live stream on the Internet. Behind Door Number Two lies a subscription service that requires custom-designed hardware and makes dozens of copies of each show. Which sounds easier to build—and to use? More importantly, which is more likely to be legal? If you went with Door Number One, then you are a sane person, untainted by the depravity of modern copyright law. But you are also wrong. The company behind Door Number One, iCraveTV, was enjoined out of existence a decade ago. The company behind Door Number Two, Aereo, just survived its first round in court and is still going strong. Why Johnny can't stream: How video copyright went insane by MeFi's own James Grimmelmann.
OnLive Lost: As founder and CEO Steve Perlman departs, The Verge looks at how OnLive failed and what remains of the revolutionary, restructured cloud-based gaming company. [more inside]
Once a new technology rolls over you, if you're not part of the steamroller, you're part of the road. -- Stewart Brand
Steam to sell productivity software [main link]. Gabe's dislike of the Windows 8 app store [BBC] may be explained. It's particularly interesting given that Steam is about to launch on Linux [Valve] [previously on Mefi]; it's one app store across all three platforms. [more inside]
Introducing Cisco Connect Cloud! Now
available mandatory for Linksys Smart Wi-Fi Routers, Cisco Connect Cloud gives you almost anybody anytime, anywhere access to your home network.
Today, Google launched Google Drive, their long-awaited cloud storage solution. Although it's seen by many as a direct answer to Dropbox, iCloud, and Skydrive, it also offers a few novel features of its own: integration with most Google web services, like Gmail, Docs, and Picasa. And perhaps most notably in the long run, it launched with an API encouraging third-party integration. 18 apps in the Chrome Web Store already implement Drive.
Berndnaut is fascinated by anything in between. Corridors and clouds, not yet there and not yet solid. What if a sculpture were to be nothing but thin air, smoke or scent?
Apple has released a developer preview of the next version of OS X, named Mountain Lion. A key new feature is Gatekeeper, a security system that will allow users to decide what type of applications can be installed or launched on their personal computers. While some security experts think its a good idea, others worry about it being subtly used to discourage users from installing non-App Store applications. Macworld has coverage of the entire update, while Daring Fireball recounts a personal demonstration.
OpenCPU provides a RESTful interface to the popular open-source statistical package R, enabling the user to perform calculations and create publication-quality or web-embeddable visualizations via standard web requests.
Stratocumulus Pareidolus (SLYT)
Music Beta by Google launches today, so go request an invitation to stream 20,000 songs from your collection for free (for now) .
It wasn't supposed to be like this. Amazon.com's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) crashed yesterday, taking with it popular sites like Reddit, Quora, Foursquare, Hootsuite, Act.ly, and about 70 other sites. Amazon.com was affected, as was some functionality of the New York Times. Amazon Web Service's Health Dashboard indicates that there are still major operating disturbances. [more inside]
As Amazon and the RIAA go head to head over the Amazon Cloud Player (esentially Dropbox with streaming) it seems like a good time to recap the turbulent history of the humble MP3, upender of the music industry business model.
Tagxedo: tag cloud with styles. Similar concept to Wordle, but with much greater customisation and word control. [more inside]
Cloud surfing the strange and marvelous looking Morning Glory. This film shows at 2:07 an animation of how the cloud is formed. [more inside]
Amazing photos of unusual cloud formations, as seen from space—along with some of the science behind them. Click on the images for full-size, wallpaperable versions.
T-Mobile and Microsoft/Danger probably lost all Sidekick users' data. They continue to advise customers to NOT reset their device by removing the battery or letting their battery drain completely, as any personal content that currently resides on your device will be lost.
Petabytes on a budget: How to build cheap cloud storage disclaimer: I use Backblaze myself, but I thought this article was cool enough to share without being fanboyish
The Cloud Appreciation Society is trying to get the Royal Meteorological Society to recognize a new form of cloud (pix). More about how cloud naming got started and more cloud photos. [previous clouds, via]
Inane Like 24 hour TV news tv, this would be a great tool, except you have it's tuned to OMG, LOLS and what the president had for lunch
Beta-registration has already started for Onlive, a revolutionary cloud-gaming service that promises to put an end to costly PC hardware upgrades, videogame piracy and the entire console industy and game retail sectors. There's just one small problem: it can't possibly work.
Have you ever wanted to fly through the clouds? Even if it was in a hospital gown? Cloud is a beautiful, simple, and free 3D game developed by students at the USC Interactive Media Center and funded by a grant from Electronic Arts.
The Blur Building. Now you can spend your day in a literal fog.