Oct 09

Daily Links for October 22nd through October 23rd

All excerpts are quoted from the respective link(s).

  • Gmail Users are Young, Female; AOL Users are Older – Social media data company Rapleaf has just completed a comprehensive study involving the demographics and behavior of webmail users. In the first part of their study, they looked specifically at age and gender data and revealed some interesting findings. For example, did you know that Gmail has more female users than male? And that Hotmail is the other way around? Meanwhile, AOL users are older…but maybe not as old as you think.
  • Get Ready For The Firehose. Search Is About To Get Realtime, Real Fast. – After months of negotiations and holding both off at bay, Twitter now has agreements with both Bing and Google to give them access to its full feed of public Tweets. Both search engines have been yearning to drink directly from Twitter’s the realtime firehose of micro-messages and all that they carry. A rudimentary version of Bing’s Twitter search is already live, and it will soon add public Facebook updates to its search results as well.
  • Web 2.0 Summit: Marissa Mayer Shows Off Social Search, Results From Your Social Networks – There’s a new Google product called “Social Search” that is launching soon in Google Labs. This is a new feature that allows you to see results for queries from people in your social network. This works by using your Google Profile. If you fill it out with the other social networks you’re a member of, such as FriendFeed, Google will scan who you are connected to and give your results from those people.
  • Interactive: Climate map shows world after 4C rise | Environment | guardian.co.uk – A map launched at the Science Museum in London has been developed using the latest peer-reviewed science from the Met Office Hadley Centre and other leading impact scientists. It shows that the land will heat up more quickly than the sea, and high latitudes, particularly the Arctic, will have larger temperature increases
  • The Power of Owned and Earned Media – Digital Influence Mapping Project – The power of social media going forward is in integrated programs, not stand-alone, "earned" media programs. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that complimentary media – social (the new "earned" media), owned media (a brand's web presence) & paid media will produce a compound effect if they work together.

Oct 09

Daily Links for October 7th through October 10th

All excerpts are quoted from the respective link(s).

  • There’s No Place Like Home, Americans are Returning to Localism | Newgeography.com – Thriving neighborhood restaurants are one small data point in a larger trend I call the new localism. The basic premise: the longer people stay in their homes and communities, the more they identify with those places, and the greater their commitment to helping local businesses and institutions thrive, even in a downturn. Several factors are driving this process, including an aging population, suburbanization, the Internet, and an increased focus on family life. And even as the recession has begun to yield to recovery, our commitment to our local roots is only going to grow more profound. Evident before the recession, the new localism will shape how we live and work in the coming decades, and may even influence the course of our future politics.
  • Project ‘Gaydar’: An MIT experiment raises new questions about online privacy – The Boston Globe – Using data from the social network Facebook, they made a striking discovery: just by looking at a person’s online friends, they could predict whether the person was gay. They did this with a software program that looked at the gender and sexuality of a person’s friends and, using statistical analysis, made a prediction. The two students had no way of checking all of their predictions, but based on their own knowledge outside the Facebook world, their computer program appeared quite accurate for men, they said. People may be effectively “outing” themselves just by the virtual company they keep.
  • The GOOD 100: Bulldozing Cities | GOOD – So, I have made a simple suggestion: that we redesign our city for the population that we actually have, not for the city we once were. Flint has lost 90,000 residents during the last 40 years, and those residents did not take their houses with them. Left behind is a city comprised of some vibrant neighborhoods, and some that are populated with empty houses, reminding the few residents still there that they live in a failed place.
  • Corporate Communism | Crooks and Liars – [Corporate Communism is] a system that takes resources from the citizenry and redistributes it to a tiny elite….a handful of weak, uncompetitive and outdated corporations and industries are purchasing control of the American political process in order to stay in business using their cronyism. It is coming at the direct expense of the rest of us, and is a total betrayal of everything that represents America.
  • the Teacher Salary Project – In this spirit, THE TEACHER SALARY PROJECT will become the story by and about those closest to the issues in our educational system-the 3.2 million teachers who spend every day in the classroom in every corner of the country. Through an interactive and evolving website informed by personal testimonies by and about America's best teachers-which will become the only digital archive of teachers' stories about teaching-and a feature-length documentary that brings together the richest of those online submissions, archival material, educational experts, student interviews, and a year of documenting the day-to-day lives and sacrifices of public school teachers, THE TEACHER SALARY PROJECT will bring an awareness to the real and imminent crisis in our educational system-how little we value our strongest, most committed, and most effective teachers, and the ripple effect this has on how our children learn and their potential for future success.
  • Internet Archaeology – Internet Archaeology seeks to explore, recover, archive and showcase the graphic artifacts found within earlier Internet Culture. Established in 2009, the chief purpose of Internet Archaeology is to preserve these artifacts and acknowledge their importance in understanding the beginnings and birth of an Internet Culture.
  • Culture Eats Strategy For Lunch – social computing within the enterprise is about everything, but the tools. It’s a philosophical and social corporate movement, a lifestyle, a new way of connecting and interacting with people, both inside and outside of the firewall; one where the main focus is not on the technology itself, but on the people behind it.
  • The Telltale Wombs Of Lewiston, Maine – The U.S. health care payment system rewards doctors for taking action and doing procedures. This reality is so powerful that it hasn't just changed the individual behavior of doctors. Keller says that the specialties themselves have changed, bending like flowers to the sun, moving toward the source of heat.
  • Birth of a Notion: Implicit Social Cognition and the "Birther" Movement – A part of the answer may lie in what’s called implicit social cognition, which involves the deep-rooted assumptions we all carry around and even act on without realizing it. Harvard University psychologist Mahzarin Banaji is a leader in implicit social cognition research. She excavates the hidden beliefs people hold by measuring how fast they make value judgments when shown a rapid-fire succession of stimuli, such as photographs of faces.
  • Worldchanging: Bright Green: Worldchanging 101: An Anniversary Collection – To celebrate our sixth anniversary, we've created a collection of what you might think of as the Worldchanging canon: pieces that have had enduring popularity and that we think say something important. And it turns out the two overlap pretty well. After compiling a list of our most popular articles we noticed that a high proportion of our most read, forwarded and linked pieces not only represent groundbreaking work, they also highlight many of the core ideas we often discuss on Worldchanging.

Oct 09

Daily Links for October 1st through October 2nd

All excerpts are quoted from the respective link(s).

  • Op-Ed Columnist – The Wizard of Beck – NYTimes.com – They pay more attention to Rush’s imaginary millions than to the real voters down the street. The Republican Party is unpopular because it’s more interested in pleasing Rush’s ghosts than actual people. The party is leaderless right now because nobody has the guts to step outside the rigid parameters enforced by the radio jocks and create a new party identity. The party is losing because it has adopted a radio entertainer’s niche-building strategy, while abandoning the politician’s coalition-building strategy.
  • Newsy: The News Is Broken, But We Can Fix It | Epicenter | Wired.com – “The media is losing credibility in peoples’ minds, and one of the reasons [for that] is this myth that people are only interested in hearing their version of the story,” Spencer told Wired.com. “[Newsy.com is] interested in hitting what I consider to be the larger percentage of the population, who understand that we live in a global marketplace…. The person who is paying attention to [the news] on a global basis and is paying attention to multiple sources and multiple perspectives will probably have a competitive advantage over the person who isn’t.”
  • Judging A Book By Its Cover: An Artistic Analysis Of Going Rogue – Going rogue – Jezebel – The composition of Going Rogue immediately brings to mind photographs of another famous maverick: Amelia Earhart. Earhart is frequently shown framed against a vast expanse of blue sky, hair tousled by the wind. Palin, too, stands against a background of nothing but clouds and sky, staring gamely at something far away, something above the viewer, that only she can see (Russia, perhaps?). Palin is the entire foreground-we see nothing but her brave figure silhouetted against the open Alaska sky. The aviation symbolism is clear: Palin is ready to take flight. Tired of being hemmed in by lame-duck governorship and the twistings and turnings of the liberal media, Palin is ready to fly off on her own, forge her own path into the future.
  • Where religious belief and disbelief meet in the brain – In the first neuroimaging study to systematically compare religious faith with ordinary cognition, UCLA and University of Southern California researchers have found that while the human brain responds very differently to religious and nonreligious propositions, the process of believing or disbelieving a statement, whether religious or not, seems to be governed by the same areas in the brain.
  • Why Dumb Toys Make Kids Smarter – The Daily Beast – While we weren’t aware of the neuroscience, it was plainly obvious: Pokemon cards were making our son’s brain really fast at elementary-school math. I began to buy him cards. Lots of cards.
  • The 15 Ugliest Cars Ever Made – We’ve all been there. A night that went just a bit too long, a bit too much to drink, that person making eyes at you across the bar. And the next morning, as your head pounds and your stomach churns, you notice that the hot body you were making it with is a little more “mutant seamonster” than you remember he/she to be. These cars are the automotive equivalent of that “uh-oh” moment. Cars so ugly their makers must have surely hung their heads in shame. If you have a strong stomach, read on.
  • Post-Recession Employment Arithmetic | The Big Picture – The “Harsh Arithmetic of the Employment Deficit” means that we will not likely return to 2007 employment levels until (ugh) 2017.

Sep 09

Daily Links for September 9th

All excerpts are quoted from the respective link(s).

  • CRMLowDown » Blog Archive » The 10 Best (and 10 Worst) Companies for Customer Service – Customers want good customer service, but if companies can just hire good PR people to cover problems up, how do we, as customers, ever demand that companies improve. We thought that a good start would be to close the information gap, so that customers know who is good and who isn’t. With that in mind, we have sifted through customer surveys and studies as well as some real-life experiences of customers, to come up with a list of the 10 best and the 10 worst companies for customer service.
  • Map-Based Infographic – A Solar Powered World — Simple Complexity – The highlighted area in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean represents the surface area of solar panels required to power the world using estimates for demand in 2030. The surface area is approximately the size of Spain or 1/8 the area of the Sahara Desert. Scattered around the map is where these panels might be distributed around the world using weather and demand as a criteria. In a realistic plan, the panels would be separated further.
  • Balance Your Media Diet – Practicing good nutrition keeps your mind sharp, your body fit, and your life long. The same could be said for consuming media. (Seriously, knowledge is power.) When you add it all up, the average American spends roughly nine hours a day glued to some kind of screen, and like your diet, quality is as important as quantity. Here are Wired's suggested servings for optimal media health.
  • Blackboard 9: Enough is Enough – HackCollege – Lifehacks for College Students – LMU spent the summer "upgrading" to Blackboard 9. I had my first encounter with the newest Blackboard system recently while taking a little ungraded quiz. Blackboard 9 boasts Facebook integration, an iPhone app and Web "two dot oh" features. Unfortunately, the core of Blackboard doesn't work. It never has. It's confusing,

    This post deals with the bugs nuances of Blackboard and how to work around them.

  • Priceless: How The Federal Reserve Bought The Economics Profession – The Federal Reserve, through its extensive network of consultants, visiting scholars, alumni and staff economists, so thoroughly dominates the field of economics that real criticism of the central bank has become a career liability for members of the profession, an investigation by the Huffington Post has found.
  • Environmental Working Group: Cell phones & PDAs – radiation
  • 21 (Eco)Visualizations for Energy Consumption Awareness | FlowingData – Energy consumption grows more and more concern, and with the popularity of Mr. Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, just about everyone is at the very least, semi-aware of energy consumption. These 21 visualizations and designs were created to increase that awareness, so that maybe, a few more people will turn off the light when they leave a room.
  • Introducing News Dots – By Chris Wilson – Slate Magazine – Like a human social network, the news tends to cluster around popular topics. One clump of dots might relate to a flavor-of-the-week tabloid story (the Jaycee Dugard kidnapping) while another might center on Afghanistan, Iraq, and the military. Most stories are more closely related that you think. The Dugard kidnapping, for example, connects to California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who connects to the White House, which connects to Afghanistan.

    To use this interactive tool, just click on a circle to see which stories mention that topic and which other topics it connects to in the network. You can use the magnifying glass icons to zoom in and out. You can also drag the dots around if they overlap. A more detailed description of how News Dots works is available below the graphic.

  • Michael Kinsley – Newspaper Corrections Run Amok With Trivia – washingtonpost.com – Who can take facts seriously after reading the daily "Corrections" column in the New York Times? Although the purpose of this column is to demonstrate the Times's rectitude about taking facts seriously, the facts it corrects are generally so bizarre or trivial and its tone so schoolmarmish that the effect is to make the whole pursuit of factual accuracy seem ridiculous.
  • Woot traffic as an indicator of financial stability: A treatise – Woot is obviously cyclical and is a direct pointer to the pocket change of a certain technical class who may be interested in lasers and walkie-talkies from China that didn’t sell. That said, one would assume said walkie-talkies would be more desirable when you’re in a job than when you’re out of one and/or when you have a little disposable income.