These are my links for February 4th through February 11th:
- Schneier on Security: Interview with a Nigerian Internet Scammer – "We had something called the recovery approach. A few months after the original scam, we would approach the victim again, this time pretending to be from the FBI, or the Nigerian Authorities. The email would tell the victim that we had caught a scammer and had found all of the details of the original scam, and that the money could be recovered. Of course there would be fees involved as well. Victims would often pay up again to try and get their money back."
- xkcd – Frequency of Strip Versions of Various Games – n = Google hits for "strip <game name>" / Google hits for "<game name>"
- PeteSearch: How to split up the US – Visualization of social network clusters in the US. "information by location, with connections drawn between places that share friends. For example, a lot of people in LA have friends in San Francisco, so there's a line between them.
Looking at the network of US cities, it's been remarkable to see how groups of them form clusters, with strong connections locally but few contacts outside the cluster. For example Columbus, OH and Charleston WV are nearby as the crow flies, but share few connections, with Columbus clearly part of the North, and Charleston tied to the South."
- Redis: Lightweight key/value Store That Goes the Extra Mile | Linux Magazine – Sort of like memcache. "Calling redis a key/value store doesn’t quite due it justice. It’s better thought of as a “data structures” server that supports several native data types and operations on them. That’s pretty much how creator Salvatore Sanfilippo (known as antirez) describes it in the documentation. Let’s dig in and see how it works."
- Op-Ed Contributor – Microsoft’s Creative Destruction – NYTimes.com – Unlike other companies, Microsoft never developed a true system for innovation. Some of my former colleagues argue that it actually developed a system to thwart innovation. Despite having one of the largest and best corporate laboratories in the world, and the luxury of not one but three chief technology officers, the company routinely manages to frustrate the efforts of its visionary thinkers.
These are my links for June 6th through June 8th:
- Latin motto generator: make your own catchy slogans! – Create your own life mottos and slogans in Latin! (Learning Latin not required, some vague idea for a desired motto a plus)
- A Map Of Social (Network) Dominance – Using Alexa and Google Trend data, Cosenza color-coded the map based on which social network is the most popular in each country. All of the light green countries belong to Facebook. But there are still pockets of resistance in Russia (where V Kontakte rules), China (QQ), Brazil and India (Orkut), Central America, Peru, Mongolia, and Thailand (hi5), South Korea (Cyworld), Japan (Mixi), the Middle East (Maktoob), and the Philippines (Friendster).
- Microsoft Releases Bing API – With No Usage Quotas – Updated search API, with no quotas and some improvements.
* Developers can now request data in JSON and XML formats. The SOAP interface that the Live Search API required has also been retained.
* Requested data can be narrowed to one of the following source types: web, news, images, phonebook, spell-checker, related queries, and Encarta instant answer.
* It is now possible to send requests in OpenSearch-compliant RSS format for web, news, image and phonebook queries.
* Client applications will be able to combine any number of different data source types into a single request with a single query string.
- Twitter Limits Getting Ridiculous! « Verwon’s Blog – Anecdotal reports of Twitter users running into problems with rate limiting, either API or max posts/tweets/follows/directs.
These are my links for June 1st through June 2nd:
- New Twitter Research: Men Follow Men and Nobody Tweets – Conversation Starter – HarvardBusiness.org – "Although men and women follow a similar number of Twitter users, men have 15% more followers than women. Men also have more reciprocated relationships, in which two users follow each other. This "follower split" suggests that women are driven less by followers than men, or have more stringent thresholds for reciprocating relationships. This is intriguing, especially given that females hold a slight majority on Twitter: we found that men comprise 45% of Twitter users, while women represent 55%."
- Shirky: Power Laws, Weblogs, and Inequality – 2003 article on popularity / traffic on blogs, which was then the latest emerging social media format. "Once a power law distribution exists, it can take on a certain amount of homeostasis, the tendency of a system to retain its form even against external pressures. Is the weblog world such a system? Are there people who are as talented or deserving as the current stars, but who are not getting anything like the traffic? Doubtless. Will this problem get worse in the future? Yes. "
- well-formed.eigenfactor.org : Visualizing information flow in science – Some nice visualization ideas using hierarchical clustering to explore patterns in citation networks.
- Bing API, Version 2.0 – Updated API documentation for Microsoft Bing (formerly Live Search) web services.
These are my links for May 19th from 08:04 to 19:24:
- When Korean Culture Flourished – WSJ.com – In the geography of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the gallery devoted to Korea acts as a sort of land bridge between China and South Asia that all too often serves as passage rather than destination. The first in a series of shows to be held over the next 10 to 15 years, "Art of the Korean Renaissance, 1400-1600" may change this. With only 47 objects(!), the exhibition explores a fertile 200-year period in Korea's cultural history, revealing as much through its choice of works as it does through the order in which it displays them. The show's modest size makes the point that, sadly, little has survived from this period, when the Joseon — or Fresh Dawn — dynasty (1392-1910) united the Korean peninsula militarily, established Confucianism as the national ideology and introduced a phonetic alphabet.
- Axiis : Data Visualization Framework – Axiis provides both pre-built visualization components as well as abstract layout patterns and rendering classes that allow you to create your own unique visualizations. Axiis is built upon the Degrafa graphics framework and Adobe Flex 3.
- Report: Mint Considers Selling Anonymized Data from Its Users – ReadWriteWeb – A lot of people would be interested in that dataset. Tricky to balance data exposure with consumer privacy.
- Lendingclub.com: A De-anonymization Walkthrough « 33 Bits of Entropy – Step by step look at de-anonymizing a consumer data set. Given alternate sources, you can fill in a lot of gaps.
These are my links for May 13th from 06:26 to 22:36:
- Zen»Blog Archive » See Which Twitterers Don’t Follow You Back (and vice-versa) In Less Than 15 Lines of…Perl – Short Perl script for comparing friends/followers, motivated by the Ruby version.
- See Which Twitterers Don’t Follow You Back In Less Than 15 Lines of Ruby | blogtāŖsk1 – Short follower/friend comparison script in Ruby.
- HornetsEye – Computer Vision for the Robotic Age – HornetsEye – "HornetsEye is a Ruby real-time computer vision extension running under GNU+Linux and Microsoft Windows. HornetsEye is maybe the first free software project providing a solid platform for implementing real-time computer vision software in a scripting language. The platform potentially could be used in robotic applications, industrial automation, unmanned aerial vehicles as well as in image and video processing, microscopy, materials science, and medical research."
- Announcing the PHP SDK for Windows Azure – Port 25: The Open Source Community at Microsoft – PHP for using Microsoft Azure services, plus pointers to related projects.
- Just Landed: Processing, Twitter, MetaCarta & Hidden Data | blprnt.blg – Map visualization of people's travel using Processing with data inferred from Twitter messages, e.g "just landed at heathrow"
These are my links for May 8th through May 12th:
These are my links for May 3rd through May 4th:
- Dilbert comic strip for 05/04/2009 from the official Dilbert comic strips archive. – Secretary to Pointy Haired Boss: "I live in a rented trailer and all of my money is in my checking account. Your investments are worthless and your mortgage is underwater. My net worth is higher than yours now. I guess promiscuity and a G.E.D. was a pretty good strategy after all." Reminded me of a thought I had earlier this year, that much of Western Civilization is built on valuing delayed gratification, which hasn't worked out so well recently as opposed to immediate consumption in many cases.
- Without Warning, Twitter Kills StatTweets (Businesses Beware) – StatSheet.com ChangeLog – Owner of StatTweets post regarding his network of sports-related Twitter handles being banned. They had several hundred accounts, one for stats for each team. This makes sense for users, given the way Twitter works, but they don't like mass account creation. Interested to see how this sorts out, there seem to be at least a few similar Twitter networks with team/region/topic-specific handles.
- Dooley Online: What URL Shortener Should I Use? – Comparison of features and some usage data for URL shorteners such as tinyurl and bit.ly used on twitter and other services.
- Obesity and Overweight: Trends: U.S. Obesity Trends 1985-2007 | DNPAO | CDC – During the past 20 years there has been a dramatic increase in obesity in the United States. This slide set illustrates this trend by mapping the increased prevalence of obesity across each of the states. In 2007, only one state (Colorado) had a prevalence of obesity less than 20%. Thirty states had a prevalence equal to or greater than 25%; three of these states (Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee) had a prevalence of obesity equal to or greater than 30%. The animated map below shows the United States obesity prevalence from 1985 through 2007.
- Why text messages are limited to 160 characters | Technology | Los Angeles Times – A look back to the beginnings of SMS in 1985 – Would the 160-character maximum be enough space to prove a useful form of communication? Having zero market research, they based their initial assumptions on two "convincing arguments," Hillebrand said. For one, they found that postcards often contained fewer than 150 characters. Second, they analyzed a set of messages sent through Telex, a then-prevalent telegraphy network for business professionals. Despite not having a technical limitation, Hillebrand said, Telex transmissions were usually about the same length as postcards.
These are my links for April 28th through April 29th:
- Inside Facebook Reports: Why Hasn’t Facebook Grown More in China? – A look at Chinese consumer internet and social media usage, QQ, 51, Xiaonei, Kaixin, and some reasons why there are only around 300,000 Facebook users in China today.
- Facebook maps the swine flu hysteria | The Web Services Report – CNET News – Visualizing interest in swine flu by mapping percentages of mentions on Facebook wall pages, using data from Lexicon.
- Develop Twitter API application in django and deploy on Google App Engine — The Uswaretech Blog – Django Web Development – Walkthrough of a sample Twitter application on Google App Engine, using Django/Python.
These are my links for April 28th from 05:35 to 14:24:
- Official Google Blog: Adding search power to public data – Interesting. Wonder if the underlying public data sets will eventually become available on Google App Engine as well, sort of like the public data sets available for use with Amazon EC2 applications.
- MySQL And Search At Craigslist – Jeremy Zawodny's slides on MySQL, Sphinx, and free text search implementation at Craigslist, from last week's MySQL conference.
- Skew, The Frontend Engineer’s Misery @ Irrational Exuberance – For mashups and the like, the distinction between a FE engineer and web dev is rather small in terms of technical skills; they are both using the same skillset, they are both interacting with APIs, and so on. However, there are important distinctions between the two: 1. web developers tend to move in small groups or as individuals, whereas fe engineers work in larger groups, 2. web developers tend to design a product on top of an existing backend service (api, etc), while fe engineers are usually working in parallel with the backend being developed.
- Study: Twitter Audience Does Not Have A Return Policy – Over 60 percent of people who sign up to use the popular (and tremendously discussed) micro-blogging platform do not return to using it the following month, according to new data released by Nielsen Online. In other words, Twitter currently has just a 40 percent retention rate, up from just 30 percent in previous months–indicating an “I don’t get it factor” among new users that is reminiscent of the similarly-over hyped Second Life from a few years ago.
- Hey Americans, Appreciate Your Freedom Of Speech : NPR – Firoozeh Dumas on the underappreciated freedoms of speech and expression we have in the US vs journalists and bloggers in Iran.
These are my links for April 24th through April 27th:
These are my links for April 12th from 17:02 to 19:13:
These are my links for April 11th through April 12th:
- Wordle – Beautiful Word Clouds – Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes.
- The dark side of Dubai – Johann Hari, Commentators – The Independent – "Dubai was meant to be a Middle-Eastern Shangri-La, a glittering monument to Arab enterprise and western capitalism. But as hard times arrive in the city state that rose from the desert sands, an uglier story is emerging."
- Topless Robot – Hot Girls Have Lightsaber Strip-Fight for Your Viewing Pleasure – Star Wars CGI meets fake body spray ad
- Poll Result: Best VPN to leap China’s Great Firewall? – Thomas Crampton – - Witopia – Undisputed winner. Quality of service, speed of surfing, though it is said to be relatively expensive at US$50 to US$60 per year. Hotspot Shield – Bandwidth limits can be painful. Force you to wait until the next month if you use it too much. – Ultrasurf – StrongVPN
- InfoQ: Facebook: Science and the Social Graph – In this presentation filmed during QCon SF 2008 (November 2008), Aditya Agarwal discusses Facebook’s architecture, more exactly the software stack used, presenting the advantages and disadvantages of its major components: LAMP (PHP, MySQL), Memcache, Thrift, Scribe.
- The Running Man, Revisited § SEEDMAGAZINE.COM – a handful of scientists think that these ultra-marathoners are using their bodies just as our hominid forbears once did, a theory known as the endurance running hypothesis (ER). ER proponents believe that being able to run for extended lengths of time is an adapted trait, most likely for obtaining food, and was the catalyst that forced Homo erectus to evolve from its apelike ancestors.
These are my links for March 16th through April 2nd:
- Google uncloaks once-secret server | Business Tech – CNET News – Photo and more comments on the Google data center server configuration, 12vdc only, local battery, shown at yesterday's data center power conference.
- Google’s Custom Web Server, Revealed « Data Center Knowledge – 1:30 video of current server configuration, from Google Data Center Energy Summit, April 1, 2009. Open shelf, power supply with built in battery (per-unit UPS) rather than centralized UPS.
- HerHotSpot Uses Facebook Connect to Block Boys Out – Relies on Facebook profile data to limit boys access to site targeting girls only. Uses FBConnect as the exclusive login method.
- SandHill.com | Opinion : Cloud Computing Ecosystem Map v1.0: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants – Collection of pointers to maps of the cloud computing ecosystem, and a merged map, as of March 2009
- Penny Arcade! – Le Twittre –
These are my links for March 4th through March 6th:
- Welcome to VIPERdb – Scripps – VIPERdb is a database for icosahedral virus capsid structures . The emphasis of the resource is on providing data from structural and computational analyses on these systems, as well as high quality renderings for visual exploration.
- Virus images at VIPERdb – If you have ever wanted to make beautiful images of viruses, in colors of your choice, then go to VIPERdb, the virus particle explorer.
- Reverse HTTP – IETF draft-lentczner-rhttp-00.txt – Formal description of the reverse HTTP proposal for initiating connections through firewalls then reversing server and client roles.
- Reverse HTTP – Second Life Wiki – Experimental protocol which takes advantage of the HTTP/1.1 Upgrade: header to turn one HTTP socket around. When a client makes a request to a server with the Upgrade: PTTH/0.9 header, the server may respond with an Upgrade: PTTH/1.0 header, after which point the server starts using the socket as a client, and the client starts using the socket as a server.
- WTFs/m – The only valid measurement of code quality, WTFs/min
These are my links for March 1st from 22:05 to 22:33:
These are my links for February 28th through March 1st:
- Community Data – Swivel – User contributed datasets, for visualization and graphs with Swivel
- Obamameter – Map visualization of economic stimulus outlays. "Keep tabs on the the US economy, the global economy and the stimulus through our dashboard for the economy."
- recovery.gov.pdf – Slide presentation on data sources and construction of initial Recover.gov site in Jan 2009, from talk at Transparency Camp.
- Virtual Hoff : DoxPara Research – Slides from Dan Kaminsky's talk at CloudCamp Seattle on network and application security issues in cloud and virtualized computing environments.
- Can You Buy a Silicon Valley? Maybe. – from Paul Graham – "If you could get startups to stick to your town for a million apiece, then for a billion dollars you could bring in a thousand startups. That probably wouldn't push you past Silicon Valley itself, but it might get you second place. For the price of a football stadium, any town that was decent to live in could make itself one of the biggest startup hubs in the world."
- Berkshire Hathaway 2008 shareholders letter (PDF) – Warren Buffet reviews the state of the financial markets, his worst year ever, and the outlook for 2009.
- White House 2: Where YOU set the nation’s priorities – Not the actual White House, but an interesting experiment in collaborative input for setting government agenda.
- Python for Lisp Programmers – Peter Norvig examines Python. "(Although it wasn't my intent, Python programers have told me this page has helped them learn Lisp.) Basically, Python can be seen as a dialect of Lisp with "traditional" syntax (what Lisp people call "infix" or "m-lisp" syntax). One message on comp.lang.python said "I never understood why LISP was a good idea until I started playing with python." Python supports all of Lisp's essential features except macros, and you don't miss macros all that much because it does have eval, and operator overloading, and regular expression parsing, so you can create custom languages that way. "
These are my links for February 16th through February 17th:
- Top 100 Network Security Tools – Many many security testing and hacking tools.
- FRONTLINE: inside the meltdown: watch the full program – "On Thursday, Sept. 18, 2008, the astonished leadership of the U.S. Congress was told in a private session by the chairman of the Federal Reserve that the American economy was in grave danger of a complete meltdown within a matter of days. "There was literally a pause in that room where the oxygen left," says Sen. Christopher Dodd"
- The Dark Matter of a Startup – "Every successful startup that I have seen has someone within their ranks that just kinda “does stuff.” No one really knows specifically what they do, but its vital to the success of the startup."
- Why I Hate Frameworks – "A hammer?" he asks. "Nobody really buys hammers anymore. They're kind of old fashioned…we started selling schematic diagrams for hammer factories, enabling our clients to build their own hammer factories, custom engineered to manufacture only the kinds of hammers that they would actually need."
- Mining The Thought Stream – Lots of comments around what is Twitter good for and how will it make money, revolving around real/near-time search, analytics, marketing, etc.
- Understanding Web Operations Culture – the Graph & Data Obsession … – Comparison of traffic at Flickr, Google, Twitter, last.fm during the Obama inauguration. "One of the most interesting parts of running a large website is watching the effects of unrelated events affecting user traffic in aggregate."
These are my links for February 15th through February 16th:
- Berkeley cloud report gets mixed reviews | The Wisdom of Clouds – CNET News – James Urqhardt commentary on UCB paper, "The paper begins by setting a definition of Cloud Computing that will be considered controversial by many, as it is firmly in the "there is no cloud computing inside enterprise data centers" camp."
- Above the Clouds: Above the Clouds Released – UC Berkeley RAD Lab starts a new blog and publishes their take on the state of cloud computing.
- Forget Dunbar’s Number, Our Future Is in Scoble’s Number « I’m Not Actually a Geek – A look at changing interaction styles enabled by growing use of online social networks and applications. "If Dunbar’s Number is defined at 150 connections, perhaps we can term the looser connection of thousands as Scoble’s Number. "
- What really happened at Ma.gnolia and lessons learned – Video podcast with Larry Halff describing how Ma.gnolia was implemented (Ruby on Rails), its ongoing operation leading up to the failure of the (1/2 TB) MySQL database a few weeks ago.
- Infrastructure for Modern Web Sites « random($foo) – An overview of packages, services, and approaches for building web systems, circa January 2009. With assorted comments.
- Online Mind Mapping – MindMeister – Web-based, embeddable mind mapping software, sort of like MindJet, wiki-style collaborative editing.
- Jean-Lou Dupont’s WEBlog: Cloud Computing Mind Map – A mind map of companies and projects in the cloud computing space.
These are my links for February 14th through February 15th:
The Budget Graph poster is a visual depiction of the United States Budget. The online pan-and-zoom browser is fun too. If you want a general sense of where the money goes, this totally beats plowing through the official federal budget documents.