Friday Link List

1. The New Yorker Investigates
The story behind a new service for journalists at The New Yorker. It’s called Strongbox, and was developed with the late Aaron Swartz:

Today, The New Yorker is announcing Strongbox, an online tool that allows you to send messages or documents to our writers and editors anonymously. (Kevin Poulsen, who helped build Strongbox together with the late Aaron Swartz, explains it all in this blog post.) The New Yorker has a long tradition of excellence in investigative reporting; many of the fifty-six National Magazine Awards we’ve won since 1970 have honored investigative pieces, like Daniel Lang’s “Casualties of War” (1970) and Seymour Hersh’s “Torture at Abu Ghraib” (2005). With Strongbox, we hope to broaden and extend that tradition by making ourselves more easily available to sources around the world.

Via {daring fireball}.


2. Fold, Spindle, Mutilate {rough type}.

Interesting and observant post from Nicholas Carr about a lack of protest about the Imminent Cloud:

But there’s another reason, I think, that today’s internment of the self in centrally stored data has not spurred the kind of protests we saw a half century ago. In the 60s, the reduction of the self to computable numbers found a tangible, ubiquitous symbol in the punchcard. To hold a punchcard with your name printed across the top was to see your being reduced to a series of binary punch holes, a series of inscrutable ones and zeroes. Like draft cards, punchcards served as concrete touchstones for protest. Ordered by some faceless bureaucracy not to fold, spindle, or mutilate the cards, one felt a moral obligation to fold, spindle, and mutilate them. To tear up a punchcard was to liberate oneself from, as Mario Savio famously put it on the Sproul Hall steps, “the machine.”


3. The Myth of Multitasking {npr}.

More research on the multitasking deficits of self-proclaimed “excellent multitaskers”:

Dr. Clifford Nass: So [in our studies] we have scales that allow us to divide up people into people who multitask all the time and people who rarely do, and the differences are remarkable. People who multitask all the time can’t filter out irrelevancy. They can’t manage a working memory. They’re chronically distracted.

They initiate much larger parts of their brain that are irrelevant to the task at hand. And even—they’re even terrible at multitasking. When we ask them to multitask, they’re actually worse at it. So they’re pretty much mental wrecks. […]

They actually think they’re more productive. They actually think they tend to—and most notably, they think they can shut it off, and that’s been the most striking aspect of this research.