Rage. Probably political rage. Maybe just personal rage. Lots of sarcasm and cynicism. Also pretty pictures.

soupsoup:

The Honey Boo Boo Boom

How does a show that draws so much negative commentary online draw such a massive television audience? 

I talked to Rich Juzwiak, staff writer at Gawker about the phenomenon of ”Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” and how negative online buzz often means positive ratings.

moneyisnotimportant:

kateoplis:

Drop Out, Start Up | NYT

Taylor Wilson has big dreams: to build nuclear fusion reactors that will solve the world’s energy crisis. “I’ve got some technology that will really change the world, so college right now is not the best option for me,” said Mr. Wilson, who is just 18 but built his first working reactor at 14. He plans to start a company, aided by a $100,000 grant as the recipient of a “20 Under 20” Thiel Fellowship. Before tackling a new form of energy, he will address slightly more modest tasks: detecting nuclear weapons and diagnosing cancer with his technology. 
The two-year fellowship, for applicants under age 20, was started last year by Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley investor who believes more young people should be chasing breakthrough technologies instead of wasting their time and money in college. Mr. Wilson is in the second group of grant recipients, announced last month. He joins 43 other fellows — 39 men and 4 women — working on projects like developing unmanned aerial vehicles and building electric car motors with rare earth magnets. […] 
But the Thiel Fellowship has also fueled a fierce debate about the value of a college education in a changing economy, one where the skills to write software or build a robot, coupled with an outsize dose of ambition and a youthful belief in one’s ability to change the world, have the potential to produce fame and fortune in a way that few other professions do.
“You increasingly have people who are graduating from college, not being able to get good jobs, moving back home with their parents,” Mr. Thiel said. “I think there’s a surprising openness to the idea that something’s gone badly wrong and needs to be fixed.”
James O’Neill, a founder of the program, blames the cost of college for what he sees as a lack of innovation in areas like energy, transportation, nanotechnology, space travel and robotics. “Not only does college track you into a career with a big company,” he said, “but for many people, it piles on a huge amount of debt that limits people starting a company or quitting your job to tinker in your garage.”


Geniuses gonna genius.

moneyisnotimportant:

kateoplis:

Drop Out, Start Up | NYT

Taylor Wilson has big dreams: to build nuclear fusion reactors that will solve the world’s energy crisis. “I’ve got some technology that will really change the world, so college right now is not the best option for me,” said Mr. Wilson, who is just 18 but built his first working reactor at 14. He plans to start a company, aided by a $100,000 grant as the recipient of a “20 Under 20” Thiel Fellowship. Before tackling a new form of energy, he will address slightly more modest tasks: detecting nuclear weapons and diagnosing cancer with his technology. 

The two-year fellowship, for applicants under age 20, was started last year by Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley investor who believes more young people should be chasing breakthrough technologies instead of wasting their time and money in college. Mr. Wilson is in the second group of grant recipients, announced last month. He joins 43 other fellows — 39 men and 4 women — working on projects like developing unmanned aerial vehicles and building electric car motors with rare earth magnets. […] 

But the Thiel Fellowship has also fueled a fierce debate about the value of a college education in a changing economy, one where the skills to write software or build a robot, coupled with an outsize dose of ambition and a youthful belief in one’s ability to change the world, have the potential to produce fame and fortune in a way that few other professions do.

“You increasingly have people who are graduating from college, not being able to get good jobs, moving back home with their parents,” Mr. Thiel said. “I think there’s a surprising openness to the idea that something’s gone badly wrong and needs to be fixed.”

James O’Neill, a founder of the program, blames the cost of college for what he sees as a lack of innovation in areas like energy, transportation, nanotechnology, space travel and robotics. “Not only does college track you into a career with a big company,” he said, “but for many people, it piles on a huge amount of debt that limits people starting a company or quitting your job to tinker in your garage.”

Geniuses gonna genius.

soupsoup:

For two months last fall, Eric Simons secretly took up residence inside the Internet giant’s Palo Alto, Calif., campus, eating free food, enjoying gym access, and building a startup in the process.

mindbabies:

The first ever mixer with crossfader. The Gaumont Chronophone: made in 1910.

mindbabies:

The first ever mixer with crossfader. The Gaumont Chronophone: made in 1910.

PerSe1010:

mothernaturenetwork:
Russia creating radiation gun to turn people into ‘zombies’It won’t cause a sudden craving for brains, but the weapon attacks the central nervous system, leaving its target in a brief zombie-like state.

And so it begins. The Zombie Apocalypse…way to go Russia…

PerSe1010:

mothernaturenetwork:

Russia creating radiation gun to turn people into ‘zombies’
It won’t cause a sudden craving for brains, but the weapon attacks the central nervous system, leaving its target in a brief zombie-like state.

And so it begins. The Zombie Apocalypse…way to go Russia…

mothernaturenetwork:

DIY cat door recognizes your felineThe computer program recognizes the cat’s profile, and if your feline companion is carrying anything in its mouth.

mothernaturenetwork:

DIY cat door recognizes your feline
The computer program recognizes the cat’s profile, and if your feline companion is carrying anything in its mouth.

soupsoup:

Finally got the message, I’m going to continue to use Missing-e because it enhances my entire Tumblr experience. I’m willing to deal with the “risks” and will not blame Tumblr for issues that are related to Missing-e.
They shouldn’t have to support a browser extension they didn’t create but I’m completely entitled to use it.

soupsoup:

Finally got the message, I’m going to continue to use Missing-e because it enhances my entire Tumblr experience. I’m willing to deal with the “risks” and will not blame Tumblr for issues that are related to Missing-e.

They shouldn’t have to support a browser extension they didn’t create but I’m completely entitled to use it.

The set of solutions to common information problems that we call journalism is coming unglued as different types of publications become possible on the Internet.

soupsoup:

infoneer-pulse:

FiOS dominates as FCC measures actual Internet speeds
For the first time ever, the FCC has collected data (PDF) showing real-world speeds that Americans receive from their Internet providers. And the news is pretty good! Or, perhaps, it’s pretty bad!
Advocacy group Free Press blasted the results, released today. “No matter how industry tries to put a positive spin on these results, the report shows conclusively that many Americans are simply not getting what they pay for,” said research director S. Derek Turner in a statement. “This study indicates Comcast, Cox, and Verizon FiOS largely perform well, but other companies like Cablevision, AT&T, MediaCom, and Frontier all fail to deliver their customers the quality of service promised.
“In every other industry, giving your customers less than what they paid for is a very serious offense. ISPs should be held to the same standard, no matter how much they try to spin their way out of it.”
» via ars technica

Ouch, sorry Cablevision users. 

soupsoup:

infoneer-pulse:

FiOS dominates as FCC measures actual Internet speeds

For the first time ever, the FCC has collected data (PDF) showing real-world speeds that Americans receive from their Internet providers. And the news is pretty good! Or, perhaps, it’s pretty bad!

Advocacy group Free Press blasted the results, released today. “No matter how industry tries to put a positive spin on these results, the report shows conclusively that many Americans are simply not getting what they pay for,” said research director S. Derek Turner in a statement. “This study indicates Comcast, Cox, and Verizon FiOS largely perform well, but other companies like Cablevision, AT&T, MediaCom, and Frontier all fail to deliver their customers the quality of service promised.

“In every other industry, giving your customers less than what they paid for is a very serious offense. ISPs should be held to the same standard, no matter how much they try to spin their way out of it.”

» via ars technica

Ouch, sorry Cablevision users. 

IF YOUR face and name are anywhere on the web, you may be recognised whenever you walk the streets—not just by cops but by any geek with a computer. That seems to be the conclusion from some new research on the limits of privacy.

For suspected miscreants, and people chasing them, face-recognition technology is old hat. Brazil, preparing for the soccer World Cup in 2014, is already trying out pairs of glasses with mini-cameras attached; policemen wearing them could snap images of faces, easy to compare with databases of criminals. More authoritarian states love such methods: photos are taken at checkpoints, and images checked against recent participants in protests.

But could such technology soon be used by anyone at all, to identify random passers-by and unearth personal details about them? A study which is to be unveiled on August 4th at Black Hat, a security conference in Las Vegas, suggests that day is close. Its authors, Alessandro Acquisti, Ralph Gross and Fred Stutzman, all at America’s Carnegie Mellon University, ran several experiments that show how three converging technologies are undermining privacy. One is face-recognition software itself, which has improved a lot. The researchers also used “cloud computing” services, which provide lots of cheap processing power. And they went to social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn, where most users post real names and photos of themselves.

A Massachusetts man found himself trying to prove his identity this spring after a facial recognition system pegged his driver’s license as a fake. The problem: He wasn’t using a fake license. He merely looked like another driver.

John H. Gass of Needham, Mass., got a letter in the mail this spring informing him that his license had been revoked, according to a report in the Boston Globe. The system is designed to track down fake IDs, flagging people who look similar to other motorists in the database. But Gass’ license was legit — he just happened to share similar facial features with another of Massachusetts’ 4.5 million drivers. Gass won a hearing and was able to prove his identity within a couple weeks, allowing him to drive again.

The saga outlines the key problem in using facial recognition tech for law enforcement purposes. False positives are inevitable — no system is perfect — but what happens when a false positive impacts someone’s driving record, criminal history or other sensitive information?

shortformblog:

parislemon:

I’m still trying to wrap my head around what the actual Lytro product (the camera) is and how it works without seeing it. But damn this sounds exciting.

A big idea to attempt to transform something that hasn’t been truly transformed since the 1800s.

But someone please tell me this doesn’t require Flash on the web. (The images on the site seem to.) Please.

Click on the embed in the link. It’s kind of awesome. To explain what it does takes the fun out of what happens when you try out the embeds. Literally, it’s like taking a single photo that can focus on any individual point in a photo, no problem.

THIS IS CRAZY AWESOME.

Have computers taken away our power?

guardian:

Photograph: Courtesy Adam Curtis

Photograph: Courtesy Adam Curtis

If you think machines have liberated us, think again, says film-maker Adam Curtis. Instead we have lost our vision

  • Anything you buy, you must maintain. Each tool you use requires time to learn how to use, to install, to upgrade, or to fix. A purchase is just the beginning. You can expect to devote as much energy/money/time in maintaining a technology as you did in acquiring it.

  • Technologies improve so fast you should postpone getting anything until 5 minutes before you need it. Get comfortable with the fact that anything you buy is already obsolete. Therefore acquire at the last possible moment.

  • You will be newbie forever. Get good at the beginner mode, learning new programs, asking dumb questions, making stupid mistakes, soliticting help, and helping others with what you learn (the best way to learn yourself).

  • Often learning a new tool requires unlearning the old one. The habits of using a land line phone don’t work in email or cell phone. The habits of email don’t work in twitter. The habits of twitter won’t work in what is next.

  • Take sabbaticals. Once a week let go of your tools. Once a year leave it behind. Once in your life step back completely. You’ll return with renewed enthusiasm and perspective.

  • How easy to switch? You will leave the tool you are using today at some time in the near future. How easy will it be to leave? If leaving forces you to leave all your data behind, or to learn a new way of typing, or to surrender four other technologies you were still using, then maybe this is not the best one to start.

  • Quality is not always related to price. Sometimes expensive gear is better, sometimes the least expensive is best for you. Evaluating specs and reviews should be the norm.

  • For every expert opinion you find online seek an equal but opposite expert opinion somewhere else. Your decisions must be made with the full set of opinions.

  • Understanding how a technology works is not necessary to use it well. We don’t understand how biology works, but we still use wood well.

  • Tools are metaphors that shape how you think. What embedded assumptions does the new tool make? Does it assume right-handedness, or literacy, or a password, or a place to throw it away? Where the defaults are set can reflect a tool’s bias.

  • What do you give up? This one has taken me a long time to learn. The only way to take up a new technology is to reduce an old one in my life already. Twitter must come at the expense of something else I was doing — even if it just daydreaming.

  • Every new technology will bite back. The more powerful its gifts, the more powerfully it can be abused. Look for its costs.

  • The risks of a new technology must be compared to the risks of the old technology, or no technology. The risks of a new dental MRI must be compared to the risks of an x-ray, and the risks of dental x-rays must be compared to the risks of no x-ray and cavities.

  • Be suspicious of any technology that requires walls to prevent access. If you can fix it, modify it or hack it yourself, that is a good sign.

  • The proper response to a stupid technology is to make a better one yourself, just as the proper response to a stupid idea is not to outlaw it but to replace it with a better idea.

  • Nobody has any idea of what a new invention will really be good for. To evaluate don’t think, try.

  • The second order effects of technology usually only arrive when everyone has one, or it is present everywhere.

  • The older the technology, the more likely it will continue to be useful.

  • Find the minimum amount of technology that will maximize your options.