"In 1967, The Public Interest
, then a leading venue for highbrow policy debate, published a provocative essay by Paul Baran
, one of the fathers of the data transmission method known as packet switching [and agent of RAND
]. Titled “The Future Computer Utility,"
the essay speculated that someday a few big, centralized computers would provide 'information processing … the same way one now buys electricity. Highly sensitive personal and important business information will be stored in many of the contemplated systems … At present, nothing more than trust—or, at best, a lack of technical sophistication—stands in the way of a would-be eavesdropper.' To read Baran’s essay (just one of the many on utility computing published at the time) is to realize that our contemporary privacy problem is not contemporary. It’s not just a consequence of Mark Zuckerberg’s selling his soul and our profiles to the NSA. The problem was recognized early on, and little was done about it... It’s not enough for a website to prompt us to decide who should see our data. Instead it should reawaken our own imaginations. Designed right, sites would not nudge citizens to either guard or share their private information but would reveal the hidden political dimensions to various acts of information sharing." -- MIT Technology Review on The Real Privacy Problem
posted by Potomac Avenue
on Nov 12, 2013 -
posted by Artw
on Mar 22, 2013 -
Stop Using Small Font Sizes
"I'm calling you out. All of you. The hackers, the designers, the code monkeys, the word-smiths, the editors, the CSS gurus, and everyone else who works on content management systems and style sheets for news sites. Stop using small font sizes." [more inside]
posted by mediareport
on Mar 12, 2013 -
"To the credit of today's social networks, they've brought in hundreds of millions of new participants [...] but they haven't shown the web itself the respect and care it deserves, as a medium which has enabled them to succeed. And they've now narrowed the possibilites of the web for an entire generation of users who don't realize how much more innovative and meaningful their experience could be."
Anil Dash laments The Web We Lost
, and offers some suggestions for moving forward.
posted by oulipian
on Dec 13, 2012 -
"Dog owners have a dog park where they can show off their dogs, but cat people don't have that," she says. "The Internet is where people who love cats can go to say, 'Look how cute my cat is.'" On cat videos on the Internet
, and maintaining the popularity of Henrí and Maru
, while designers
of the Scratching Post
note how how some owners start writing in a first feline style. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore
on Oct 24, 2012 -
As I watched my anonymous photo upload, I felt a naughty pang–the type you have surely felt if you, like me, have ever cast your sexual desires out into the two-dimensional, glowing, public/private hybrid world that is the Internet. That first time you pressed “send,” there was a panic that it could all go very, very wrong—but it’s worth it, you think, because you’re kind of horny. [more inside]
posted by latkes
on Oct 9, 2012 -
Dog House Diaries
— we know that web-comics are where all the money and fame is at and we want a piece. It was obvious that in order to be successful in this biz, you need to be good with humor, drawing, math and computers. Well we kick some serious butt at drawing and math so we figured 2 out of 3 wasn’t bad.
posted by netbros
on Aug 16, 2012 -
Both inside and outside the walls of Facebook, the story of social games has become one of dead geese and golden eggs, flatlined growth, formulaic games and shady practises. Many warned that the sector was slowing down, but sometimes giants need to fall. It needs to get bad enough before people start to really consider what's next... So what comes next?
posted by Artw
on Jul 31, 2012 -
(Transformations, Emotional Deconstruction) is a large, wall-based installation created by Sean Hathaway
, consisting of an array of 80 Teddy Ruxpin dolls that speak emotional content gathered from the web via synthetic speech with animated mouths.
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Jun 28, 2012 -
In May, YouTube announced they would be hosting
a lineup of original video channels, in a possible attempt to compete with network and cable television. Among the new offerings was WIGS
, the (NSFW
) brainchild of director/producer/writers Jon Avnet and Rodrigo Garcia, of original, scripted dramatic series and short films exploring female characters. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jun 27, 2012 -
New Google+ Study Reveals Minimal Social Activity, Weak User Engagement Fast Company
summarizes a new study
from RJMetrics that looks at public posts, +1s, replies and reshares on Google+. It concludes "the average post on Google+ has less than one +1, less than one reply, and less than one re-share." Google replies that public posts are a poor metric of user activity; Fast Company replies that "Google has refused to provide clear figures and metrics for its social network's active user base" and links to Danny Sullivan's "brilliant rundown of Google's lack of transparency on the subject" - If Google’s Really Proud Of Google+, It Should Share Some Real User Figures
There was also Wil Wheaton's recent angry "Oh, go fuck yourself, Google" rant
in response to a recent experiment replacing YouTube's "like" button with a Google+ button for a small number of users, thus requiring them to sign up for Google+ before they can 'like' a YouTube video. Is Google Forcing Google+ Down People’s Throats?
posted by mediareport
on May 21, 2012 -
. Hike the Swiss Alps but don't bother getting out of your chair. Site is in German, but easy to navigate.
posted by zardoz
on May 19, 2012 -
A Transparent Attempt to Explain the Economics Behind Running a Pop-Culture Website and the Need to Run Intrusive Advertising The thing about display ads is that you are paid for about what they are worth, which is to say: $.30 per 1,000 impressions. Most people barely even notice them, so advertisers are not willing to pay you very much to run them...Instead, we have to use intrusive ads which are paid on a much larger scale, approximately $7.00 per 1,000 impressions. So, if a site like ours generates 100,000 impressions, that should be $700 a day. Awesome. We should be rich, right? Not so much. Pajiba previously
. [via Slashfilm
posted by mediareport
on Apr 22, 2012 -