We previously lamented the lack of a real writer in space. Well, at least now we will have a poetic and social fire-eater.
The commercials are all over television — and they certainly are attention-grabbing. They’re the ones where the heavy, bald guy is sitting in his easy chair talking in a squeaky female voice about all the clothes he bought — including a bustier. Or the little old lady speaking with the gruff voice of a younger man about the sweet motorcycle she now owned. Identity theft is a serious crime — one that is occurring with an alarming frequency. The Identity Theft Manifesto explains how criminals get your personal info, and what you can do about it.
A message from baby Emily. Most popular baby names + Medicare advice + awful Elvis impersonation = EPIC FAIL. A single link video post from the Social Security Administration. You will laugh. Until you remember we (USians) paid for this. (via Andrew Sullivan)
Kate Rich has run the Feral Trade grocery business trading goods along social networks since 2003. Feral Trade forges new, 'wild' trade routes between art, business and social interaction. Goods hitchhike on other sources of movement, harnessing the surplus freight potential of social and cultural travel to haul grocery items intercity, often using other artists and curators as mules. An online courier database provides a live, public view of all movements in the network.
OpenForQuestions at WhiteHouse.gov is asking you to vote for the questions you want Obama to address Thursday night. Like digg, but more governmentally.
How To Do Almost Anything With Social Media from Mashable. All kinds of practical tips and tons of useful link resources for personal or business uses. At the bottom of the page are additional links to things like 24 Most Underrated Websites of 2008 l How to Find a Babysitter Online l How to Find Your Way Around Any New City.
Seeing Tibetan Art Through Social Tags - An interesting paper on social tagging. What can tags tell us about how images are perceived by diverse cultures? [more inside]
"Tests have shown that oxytocin reduces anxiety levels in users. It is a hormone that facilitates social contact between people."
Ping.fm lets you update your social network statuses, blogs and microblogs simultaneously from one place. The current sign-up beta code is "tastyping". [more inside]
Another weekend sitting alone in your apartment? Thinking of sending that two thousand word cry for help to anonymous Ask Metafilter? Maybe you should take a look at the advice at Succeed Socially first. [more inside]
Technology of Cooperation (.gif map), from Howard Rheingold's Cooperation Commons project. Rheingold on Amish technology practices. [more inside]
"We all leave something behind, but it looked like Olive had left nothing." Olive Archer passed away after five years in a care home, five years that passed without a visitor. Concerned that Olive was an Eleanor Rigby the minister prepared for her service by making an appeal to the public to find if anyone remembered Olive. Friends were found. Sadly, she is not alone. Maybe she needed SagaZone.
Some fancy security for 6 to 14-year-old girls Anne's Diary is a Canadian social network for 6 to 14-year-old girls (I read about it on the CBC's Spark blog). It has two interesting security features to fend off child molesters and the like. To sign up for the service, kids need to get a non-parental adult professional as a 'sponsor' who validates their identity and age (much like applying for a passport). Secondly, you get a USB fingerprint scanner with your initial package, and I gather the kids use this to log in to the service. And yes, that's Anne with an 'e'. No Prince Edward Island gable was ever this secure. [more inside]
Trackulous - Track Anything. There have to be ten dozen ways to track your weight online. MeFi users track thteir social athletic accomplishments at WeEndure and Runner+. But what if we wanted to track (and graph) Javelinas Sighted, Cookies Tossed, Fights with Boyfriend, or any other user-defined numerical quantity over time? And what if we wanted to share our statistics with our friends? For that, Trackulous - a simple, elegant, mobile-friendly web tool.
Diversity counterproductive to "social capital?" James Wilson's article in Commentary magazine talks about Harvard sociologist Robert Putnam's essay recently published in Scandinavian Political Studies. In the essay, Putnam publicizes the findings of his research, conducted in rural districts, towns, and cities, whose conclusion establishes that diverse neighborhoods show less "social capital" because ethnically diverse residents seem to distrust each other. [more inside]
Decentralized social network: "...build your social network in one place and have other NoseRub clients connect to it instead of you having to build multiple networks on multiple social networks. The best part is NoseRub is released under the open source MIT license." via eHub. Previously related.
Picnicmob would like to invite you to a picnic and seat you precisely with those most like you.
DailyHub - "Social Content for Business Geeks". A Digg-esque aggregator that purports to be grown up.
Contrary to popular belief, not all loners have a pathological fear of social contact "Loners often hear from well-meaning peers that they need to be more social, but the implication that they're merely black-and-white opposites of their bubbly peers misses the point."
FabIndia becomes a Harvard Business Case study It's a brand that does not advertise. It, in fact, celebrates the success of its copycats. And now Fabindia, the craft-conscious enterprise, is a Harvard Business School (HBS) case study. "Founded in 1960, Fabindia makes the cut for being an example of a corporation that does not just aim to do well, but does good too. "A strong mission can be both an opportunity and a constraint on the growth of a firm," points out Dr Khaire. However, the private retailer's unique value proposition has not come in the way of it being recognised as big brand today. And this in spite of the fact that Fabindia has never advertised, points out Dr Khaire."
It's perhaps in the nature of humanity — or at the very least, modern-day culture — to marvel at, and share news about, our more hateful aspects. It's nice to know that there are moments out there that you can accidentally stumble across that prove to you that mankind has perhaps some innate goodness in it, as well. (Sorry for the unicorn fluffiness; we now return you to your regularly scheduled Metafilter programming, already in progress.)
Data analysis, brought to you by Big Blue, is following a trend. Data has never been more social. Geeks and statistics groupies used to be isolated, but the internet is changing that. Ever pine for a pile of Excel spreadsheets? Have you tried running an ANOVA on a year's worth of traffic data? You're not alone. New sites add sociability to cold hard facts; take a look at the "YouTube for data" or IBM's Many Eyes. Both sites induce squeals of delight from anyone who's ever felt Tuftian. What's next? One word: infornography. Please, keep your Standard Deviation jokes to yourself.
StumbleUpon is now bigger than del.icio.us, counting 1.3 million users. Is it just another social booknetworking site, or a way for me to finally "surf" the intertubes? Just ten more Stumbles before bed, and this time I'm serious.
Public Private Ventures is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the effectiveness of social policies, programs and community initiatives, especially as they affect youth and young adults. Their entire collection of social policy research publications are available for free on their website. Leaving the Street: Young Fathers Move from Hustling to Legitimate Work is particularly compelling; the title says it all, really.
I'm an amendment to be - Yes an amendment to be. And I'm hoping that they'll ratify me. With political pressure towards signing bills becoming more relevant in the Rovian era of politics (example), will we see a shift in Congressional jurisprudence on issues such as Social Security, The War in Iraq (nytimes op-ed reg req), Ethics in the 110th? Perhaps Public Perception has a lot to do with it. Of course, some loopholes couldn't hurt.
Remember Third Voice, the controversial browser plug-in that let you add public notes to any website? Enough webmasters complained and it was shut down in 2001, after only two years in operation. Maybe attitudes have changed, because the folks at Trailfire are trying this idea again. Available for Firefox or IE.
The Enron Explorer from Trampoline Systems "lets you investigate the actions and reactions of Enron's senior management team as the noose began to tighten" (through some 200,000 public domain corporate emails) using Trampoline's SONAR social network mapping platform. (via FutureFeeder)
Big Brother 101 -- Could your social networks brand you an enemy of the state? (Popular Science Mag) And one staffer finds out it might--due to a connection to the Buffalo Six. Think 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon, but with tapping and surveillance and worse at the other end.
What News Corp doesn't want you to know about myspace is that the much of the success of myspace was due to a large successful advertising campaign and it wasn't grass roots at all. They also don't want you to know that Tom Anderson didn't really create the site and that it is more spam 2.0 than anything else. The article is written by a 19 year old web journalist called Trent Lapinski. Has everyone just been had? Does it matter? (via Digg and Valleywag)
The Internet and our social and psychological well-being : This older study correlates Internet use with declining social relationships and isolation. A more recent study (PDF) shows that the Internet has changed and positively affects social relationships.
Silly name, but fun all the same ... Free web (2.0, natch) chat site that allows users to search for chat rooms based on tags or to set up their own room(s) that are either public or private.
Stickam One might be tempted to dismiss it at first glance as just a video-enabled Myspace clone for emo teens with webcams; but looking past that you'll find a fairly robust and platform-independent Flash-based webcam broadcast and videoconferencing app. There's a profile page with an embedabble Flash viewer, a full screen personal conference popup with privacy options, group video chat rooms, and hosted galleries for photo, video and audio content. Is this the advent of Cam Whoring 2.0? (Oh, and see if you can catch the Pissed-Off Caveman online. It's a webcam pointed at a decked-out Robot Chimpanzee Head.)
Child brides of Afghanistan. A child bride is very often just that: a child, even a preteen, her innocence betrothed to someone older, even much, much older. Images by Stephanie Sinclair who's work on women's issues in Afghanistan is always eye opening.
Invasion of the digg-alikes - if you like advertising, see marktd or adveracio.us . If you fancy brainy stuff see braindigg. If you like to spy on blogs there's blinklist and blogniscent. There's even a chinese digg. If none if these tempt you build your own digg-clone. [a lot via]
AIGA: Inequality Matters
"These are just slush funds for conservative interest groups" --The Compassion Capital Fund ($148 million of our money), and the Community-Based Abstinence Education grant program ($391.7 million of our money)--just 2 of many new programs. ...The distribution of new money to conservative organizations is a small part of an estimated flood of $2 billion a year in federal grants to religious and religiously affiliated organizations.--except it's only to organizations who have policies that agree with Bush and the GOP agenda on social issues, and not about need.
Visualising Networks is fun. So are Monkey Networks (ppt). Dolphin Networks (pdf). Ant networks can aide network design. Does the Brain Work Like the Internet? Can the Internet Think? The Social Superorganism and its Global Brain? Webog Inequality. A City Is Not a Tree. The I Ching, a network of 384 pathways. The Whole, the Parts, and the Holes. Heterarchy, the secret of Japan, Inc.? Sense/non-sense;hierarchy/heterarchy... Heterachy and Heirarchy: Two Complimenatary categorises of description (pdf). Summary: "Our most significant problems cannot be solved at the same level of thinking at which we produced them." (attributed to Einstein)
Burning Man 2005... 100 photos by Scott London. (note: some nudity. may not be safe for work.)
SwarmSketch - Collective sketching of the collective consciousness. Requires Flash. [MI]
Welcome to Supr.c.ilio.us, the World's First Social Social Tagging Site Tagging Site™. This is the place to come to tag all those other tagging sites. (But...is it Web 2.0 Or Not?)
Ning is a very cool thing. 'Sign up. Build new social apps. Use new social apps.' [via Torrez]
The Secret History of Able Danger The WP may have have the goods on Able Danger. The Pentagon and Intel officials are mum on the data mining project because it could have been illegal.
David Brooks makes an interesting point. Rebuild New Orleans to ensure that the cycle of generational poverty is broken. Does this seem like social engineering? There is a precedent for this, though. Can it--should it?--be done on a citywide scale? Should the government meddle this much in the day-to-day lives of people?
The avatar versus the journalist. Ant farms, Bombay, the neolithic revolution, and Wikipedia.
The next stage of evolution for social networking AlwaysOn, a social networking business site, is working on an ambitious new project, GoingsOn (screenshot), that encompasses most of the hot features that are all over the web, like photos, videos, and dating info. More in comments...
Interviews: Russell Banks, Susan Orlean, Tibor Fischer, Azar Nafisi. | Writing on social justice: Susan Power on Bosnia. Barbara Erenreich on poverty. | e-books: Aristotle, Emma Goldman, Buddha. | New Non-fiction, fiction. | Hundreds of Reviews. Graphic Art, Poetry, Music, and much more from identity theory, one of the best literary websites I've encountered, thanks to an incredulity-inducing amount of work by what seem to be volunteers. Wow. (Specific interviews already MeFid in these threads.)