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useful websites

101 Useful Websites is "a frequently updated list of lesser-known but wonderful websites and cool web apps. Here are some of the most useful websites on the internet that you may not know about. These web sites, well most of them, solve at least one problem really well and they all have simple web addresses (URLs) that you can memorize thus saving you a trip to Google." [more inside]
posted by flex on Jul 20, 2014 - 15 comments

We Deserve Better Dressed Billionaires

"You're a rich white man. You're used to being listened to. But while you're jabbering away, all anyone can see is your garbage shirt that you bought for twenty bucks and have been wearing all year, shoved nastily into your shiny off-the-rack suit. Why would you do this to your brand?" - Shirterate, a clothing consultation service for tech moguls by opinionated homosexuals.
posted by The Whelk on Jul 10, 2014 - 75 comments

"And you think Mark ignored you because you're a woman?"

The Ping Pong Theory of Tech Sexism by Ariel Schrag. A web comic about the subtleties of workplace sexism in male-dominated industries.
posted by Librarypt on Jul 5, 2014 - 118 comments

Yo.

Yo: Dumb app, security risk, passing fad, and/or "easily the worst piece of software I've ever used"?
posted by mudpuppie on Jun 23, 2014 - 128 comments

“Let’s, Like, Demolish Laundry”

"In Silicon Valley, where The Work of creating The Future is sacrosanct, the suggestion that there might be something not entirely normal about this—that it might be a little weird that investors are sinking millions of dollars into a laundry company they had been introduced to over email that doesn't even do laundry; that maybe you don’t really need engineers to do what is essentially a minor household chore—would be taken as blasphemy."
posted by So You're Saying These Are Pants? on Jun 5, 2014 - 217 comments

Goes well with that post about the Pantone of 1692.

Soon you will be able to print your own makeup from home using any colour you find online.
posted by divabat on May 8, 2014 - 18 comments

The Little House that Tweets.

In San Francisco, a homeowner gave his house a Twitter account that posts an update when there is unanticipated movement on the first floor, and welcomes him home. [more inside]
posted by Kitteh on Mar 10, 2014 - 47 comments

Ageism in the tech industry?

Vivek Wadhwa's article about hiring in the tech industry makes some startling assertions.
posted by toastchee on Feb 25, 2014 - 113 comments

John Chen's Plan to Save Blackberry

John Chen's Plan to Save Blackberry Over all, Chen wants BlackBerry to transform itself from being a “mobile technology company” that pushes handset sales to “a mobile solution company” that takes a broader approach to serving the mobile computing needs of its customers. Remaining in the handset business is important—for now, at least. “I think devices are still one component of the solution,” Chen says. “The question is, Do we need to be in the device business? That remains to be seen.”
posted by modernnomad on Feb 24, 2014 - 54 comments

DevArt

DevArt: An exhibition of art created with code - skywriting quadcopter drones programmed with c++, room dividers reimagined as 3D screens for psychedelic projections, using raspberry pi to rename WiFi networks as lines of poetry. They are collaborating with the Barbican in London for the Digital Revolution exhibition and are currently seeking an emerging creative coder to be funded to present at the exhibition alongside world-class interactive artists Zach Lieberman, Karsten Schmidt, and the duo of Varvara Guljajeva & Mar Canet.
posted by divabat on Feb 6, 2014 - 2 comments

The Hardest Computer Game of All Time

Many programmers' careers were launched by playing an innovative computer game called Robot Odyssey. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Jan 25, 2014 - 35 comments

Strippers and Steaks Mentality

Booth Babes Don't Work
It’s a pretty indefensible practice. The hiring of young, college-aged females to dress as provocatively as possible to help promote…um, Ultra HD TV sets, Android tablets and Internet-enabled toothbrushes. It’s a relic of old enterprises, but that’s just the way they like their world. But what nearly every critic has failed to mention is a real concrete business reason to end the practice. Well, I do: Booth babes do NOT convert.

posted by jillithd on Jan 16, 2014 - 102 comments

Model View Culture

Model View Culture is a new online publication that concerns itself with technology, culture and diversity. [more inside]
posted by tempythethird on Jan 14, 2014 - 2 comments

a giant machine designed to give people what they want

"Twenty years after people began using the web en masse, it’s time, Williams said, to accept that the internet isn’t a magical universe with boundless potential. It’s just another engine for improving quality of life." Twitter, Blogger and Medium founder Evan Williams on the triumphs and dangers of convenience.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 1, 2013 - 29 comments

Inside the fall of BlackBerry

Inside the fall of BlackBerry: How the smartphone inventor failed to adapt. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Sep 29, 2013 - 108 comments

Fireman Saves Kiten

Fireman Saves Kitten, captured with a GoPro. (SLYT)
posted by kbanas on Sep 25, 2013 - 78 comments

Taken to the gleaners

Blackberry will be harvested by a private equity firm for US $4.7 billion. Generally blamed for their own decline by disdaining the massive rush of popularity of competing smartphones and becoming increasingly well-known for the bizarre behavior of their leadership, Blackberry hoped to turn things around by ejecting their co-CEOs, rebranding from Research In Motion to the name of their sole product, and launching a new spate of products: OS 10, new generation of touchscreen phones, and planning a second attempt at tablets. In spite of some misguided punditry predicting a new era, they won no love from either the reviewers or the public. [more inside]
posted by ardgedee on Sep 23, 2013 - 85 comments

TechNinja

What is the fashion known as techninja? The basis is the high-tech materials popular with hikers, bikers, and climbers, but worn as street wear. It takes inspiration from a military aesthetic, from science fiction (NSFW), and Goth Ninja. Want to know more? Here's a guide (2, 3, 4, 5), and here's some inspiration (pinterest, tumbler, 2). [more inside]
posted by rebent on Sep 17, 2013 - 101 comments

Live from Tahrir Square

Live from Tahrir Square courtesy BitTorrent Live [more inside]
posted by item on Jul 3, 2013 - 63 comments

Hiding Public Land

For years in Malibu, CA, homeowners have tried to hide public access points to local beaches in order to prevent people from using them. A recently released app has tipped off the public as to exactly where these access points are, causing an outcry from the homeowners.
posted by reenum on Jun 23, 2013 - 114 comments

What It's Really Like To Be A Google Intern

Rohan Shah, a student at the University of Illinois, wrote about the interview process and culture for interns at Google.
posted by reenum on Jun 3, 2013 - 48 comments

A Woman’s Place

The year was 1986, and Lynda had just joined a small cadre of female engineers working for FI, a groundbreaking IT firm that laid the foundations for outsourced development and women’s rights in the workplace. The company, originally called Freelance Programmers, was founded in the early 1960s by Stephanie Shirley, a German who had been evacuated to Britain — along with many fellow Jewish children — as part of the kindertransport shortly before the Second World War.
Gender equality is still a major issue in the technology industry, but 50 years ago one British company was blazing trails.
posted by Foci for Analysis on Jun 1, 2013 - 14 comments

Tumblr Tumblr Tumblr, Yahoo!

Yahoo Inc.'s board has approved a deal to acquire blogging startup Tumblr, people familiar with the matter said Sunday. Yahoo has agreed to pay $1.1 billion in cash for the company, one of the people said. Tumblr would continue to operate largely as an independent business, the people said. Yahoo! acquired Ludicorp and Flickr in March 2005. The reported acquisition cost was $35 million. [more inside]
posted by chavenet on May 19, 2013 - 220 comments

Your dog did not eat your homework

CourseSmart software enables professors and teachers to track how much of the assigned reading students have completed.
posted by reenum on Apr 11, 2013 - 80 comments

Putting the "I" in IPO

Mike Merrill decided to sell shares in his life. He now has 160 shareholders who can tell him what to do.
posted by reenum on Mar 23, 2013 - 21 comments

Debugging

Every programmer knows that debugging is hard. Great debuggers, though, can make the job look simple. " That attitude is illustrated in an anecdote from IBM's Yorktown Heights Research Center. A programmer had recently installed a new workstation. All was fine when he was sitting down, but he couldn't log in to the system when he was standing up. That behavior was one hundred percent repeatable: he could always log in when sitting and never when standing." [more inside]
posted by amitai on Mar 17, 2013 - 102 comments

So when did you move to Austin?

Austin is booming with jobs, condos, festivals, traffic, hipsters, joggers, and high-concept dive bars.
Does that mean it’s no longer Austin?
posted by four panels on Feb 12, 2013 - 132 comments

PRINTER IS JAMMED. OPEN DOOR, CLEAR FOOD, THEN PRESS OK.

Looking to print your own house, jewelry or dessert? Then check out Engadget's Consumer Guide to 3D printers.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jan 30, 2013 - 81 comments

Measure 4 times, cut once.

"We worked through every possible disaster situation," Reed said. "We did three actual all-day sessions of destroying everything we had built."
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Nov 16, 2012 - 30 comments

The Brief - A daily briefing of technology news worth caring about

NASA will send you an email or text alert when the International Space Station is visible from your area. IBM scientists have recently made significant advances in nanotechnology. A mathematician thought a poorly-encrypted headhunting email from Google was testing him, but he had actually discovered a major security hole. All of this found via The Brief: A Daily Briefing of Technology News Worth Caring About from MeFi's own nostrich. [via mefi projects]
posted by davidjmcgee on Nov 9, 2012 - 15 comments

The iEconomy

The iEconomy: Apple and Technology Manufacturing. Since January, the New York Times has been running a series of articles "examining the challenges posed by increasingly globalized high-tech industries," with a focus on Apple's business practices. The seventh article in the series was published today: In Technology Wars, Using the Patent as a Sword. Related: For Software, Cracks in the Patent System and Fighters in the Patent War. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 8, 2012 - 16 comments

"But I say, you have to put your ego aside and play by the rules so you can get to the top and change things."

Female executives at Twitter, Yahoo and Google discuss work/life balance at the top of the tech industry, how women should negotiate at work, and whether women view job satisfaction differently than their male colleagues. [more inside]
posted by Catseye on Oct 6, 2012 - 57 comments

Automatic building mapping could help emergency responders

Researchers have developed a backpack that generates building layout map in realtime. (yt) The prototype system automatically maps the wearer’s environment, recognizing movement between floors. It was designed at MIT to be used by emergency responders. Read more.
posted by crunchland on Sep 27, 2012 - 38 comments

Troubled Life of a Tech Company Chef

Hungry? A former Google chef says, “They had no budget, it was foie gras and Kobe steaks every day.” The Semi-Charmed Life Of A Tech Company Chef
posted by wallstreet1929 on Sep 11, 2012 - 90 comments

Glocal et al

Actual things that came out of human mouths at day one of Techcrunch's Disrupt SF Conference. (New York magazine)
posted by Wordshore on Sep 11, 2012 - 84 comments

The gang spends an entire episode waiting for a Chinese restaurant’s website to load

Seinfeld 2012 Imagining the characters from the now-vintage sitcom dealing with current technology and social media. From the creator of the beloved Beartato.
posted by oneswellfoop on Aug 1, 2012 - 77 comments

"We are one step closer to our dream otaku bros"

Man takes virtual augmented reality girlfriend for a walk in the park. (via)
posted by crunchland on Jul 9, 2012 - 103 comments

Whiz Kids

In the early 80’s, personal computers were a new innovation. Films like WarGames made it seem as if a kid with a keyboard could hack into anything: a school or corporate mainframe, NORAD, the US nuclear arsenal or your neighborhood bank. Hoping to capitalize on this, in 1983 CBS premiered a show which could have been considered WarGames’ intellectual successor. It featured a group of resourceful kids who solved crimes by hacking and cracking, led by Matthew Laborteaux, child star of Little House on the Prairie, and advised by a Gavilan SC-toting, mustachioed reporter played by Max Gail, formerly of the show Barney Miller. Whiz Kids lasted only a single season: 18 episodes, but all of them live on in cyberspace, on YouTube. Complete episode links contained within. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 8, 2012 - 41 comments

ENORMOUS SCALABILITY

Leverage the power of CLOUD COMPUTING using standard Unix tools!
posted by kenko on Apr 25, 2012 - 31 comments

I Dated A Zombie

Many dating websites help increase their numbers by buying profiles from third party brokers.
posted by reenum on Apr 21, 2012 - 29 comments

Why Netflix Never Implemented The Algorithm That Won The Netflix $1 Million Challenge

Why Netflix never implemented the algorithm that won the Netflix $1 Million Challenge.
posted by reenum on Apr 18, 2012 - 45 comments

25 Years of IBM’s OS/2!

25 years ago today, IBM released it's next-generation operating system OS/2. It never took the world by storm as planned, but it also never really went away.

A look at OS/2: Beginnings - OS/2 1.0 - OS/2 1.1 - OS/2 1.2-1.3 (screenshots) - OS/2 2.0 (screenshots) - OS/2 Warp - OS/2 Warp 4 (screenshots) - eComstation
posted by dunkadunc on Apr 2, 2012 - 111 comments

"But, since you asked, buckle up."

Quora: What do all the controls in an airplane cockpit do?
posted by zarq on Mar 15, 2012 - 70 comments

Want to bro down and crush code?

"Tech’s latest boom has generated a new, more testosterone-fueled breed of coder. Sure, the job still requires enormous brainpower, but today’s engineers are drawn from diverse backgrounds, and many eschew the laboratory intellectualism that prevailed when semiconductors ruled Silicon Valley.... At some startups the pendulum has swung so far in the other direction that it’s given rise to a new 'title': brogrammer."
posted by dw on Mar 4, 2012 - 175 comments

Is that a keyboard in your pants or just another old joke?

Taking the idea of a 'laptop computer' to its logical-but-absurd extreme, a pair of Dutch designer dorks have come up with a pair of jeans with a built-in wireless computer keyboard. Enjoy.
posted by oneswellfoop on Feb 18, 2012 - 37 comments

JavaScript InfoVis Toolkit

JavaScript InfoVis Toolkit (JIT) - providing tools for creating interactive data visualizations for the web
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Feb 12, 2012 - 14 comments

Floppy Chorus

Moppy is a M_usical Fl_oppy controller program built for the Ardiuno UNO. (Github link.) Who dares argue the haunting refrain of the Imperial March fails to haunt ever more still when played back by floppy drive read-heads? Perhaps you'd enjoy Jonathan Coulton's Still Alive in the original 3.5", or Daft Punk's Tron anthem Derezzed? And though the season has lapsed, you can always cue up Carol of the Bells, primed and ready for December 2012.
posted by disillusioned on Jan 6, 2012 - 10 comments

End of An Era?

A couple of commentators present conflicting arguments about whether the golden age of tech blogging is over.
posted by reenum on Dec 29, 2011 - 38 comments

Killing techies, the Malaysian way

Malaysia is proposing a Computing Professionals Bill, based on the Registration of Engineers Act [.PDF] which makes it mandatory for all practicing "computing professionals" to be registered with a government body. Dealing in the IT industry, including sending “proposals, plans, designs, drawings, schemes, reports, studies or others to be determined by the Board to any person or authority in Malaysia” without being registered will incur a fine not exceeding RM20,000 (~US$6380) or 6 months in jail. Malaysian IT professionals and geeks are up in arms, and similarities have been drawn to Nigeria's law on computing professionals.
posted by divabat on Dec 8, 2011 - 26 comments

Disconnect co-founder: 'People will pay for tools to protect privacy'

Facebook Disconnect co-founder: 'People will pay for tools to protect privacy'
posted by nam3d on Oct 18, 2011 - 58 comments

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