Friday Link List: Making Connections Edition

1. Missed Connections for A-Holes {new yorker}

We made small talk in the checkout line at Trader Joe’s. You said that you literally could not live without the salsa you were buying. I wish we could talk again. You used “literally” incorrectly. It really pissed me off. I wish you could literally not live without that salsa, because then I’d take it from you.

 

2. Spurious Correlations 

Tyler Vigen has created a site that draws attention to the ways in which statistical terms like correlation can be manipulated to fit a narrative:

Spurious Correlation

See also: Andrew Sullivan’s take and On the Media’s TLDR.

3. The EU Sticks up for the Right to Be Forgotten {npr}.

This seems cool but gosh will be a nightmare for the tech companies to manage.

Audie Cornish: So, give us a quick kind of sketch about the case that brought about the ruling. I understand it involved a man from Spain. He wanted to delete an auction notice of his home from a Spanish newspaper.

Meg Ambrose: That’s right. Usually, the content that we talk about with the right to be forgotten is much more salacious. This guy wanted an old debt to be removed from his Google search results. He took his complaint to the Spanish Data Protection Agency, who determined that he did have a case for the right to be forgotten. And the agency ordered Google to remove links to that content. It moved through the courts as Google appealed it and the case that came down was shocking, I think, for most people.

See also: Andrew Sullivan’s take.

4. A Spoon That Shakes To Counteract Hand Tremors {npr}

This is really cool:

“There’s a little motion sensor right near the spoon,” Pathak explains. “If I had tremor, it’s going to move opposite to what the shaking is doing. So, if I move to the left, it’ll physically move the spoon to the right.”

And that cancels out the tremor as the spoon moves from plate to mouth. In a clinical trial, the Liftware spoon canceled out more than 70 percent of a user’s tremor.

Friday Link List: App Edition

1. CyclePhilly hopes to record biking patterns to help plan bike lanes {technically philly}

To use the app, a rider starts the route, bikes to their destination and hits save. Then they’ll be prompted to record the purpose of the trip, such as a work commute, going to school or social. Their personal routes are stored on the device and a copy of the route they took is uploaded to CyclePhilly servers to be analyzed by planning authorities.

Unfortunately, I won’t be using the app, because an iPhone can only track one activity at a time, and I already use RunKeeper to track my rides.

You should use it though.

2. Recording the Global Soundscape {science friday}

Inspiring new app:

What is the sound of your local environment? How does it make you feel? How will it sound in the future? Ecologist Bryan Pijanowski is looking to answer these questions and create a soundscape of every ecosystem on the planet through the Global Soundscapes project.

3. Not on App Store

Smug hipsters are awful, especially when they plaster the real world with expressions of their smugness.

Via {today in tabs by rusty foster}

4. How We Love {ted radio hour}

I know I know. Just listen to it.

Friday Link List

1. Comcast’s Real Repairman {new york times}

Thorough overview of Comcast chief David Cohen. Gave me a much better insight into the Time Warner proposal.

Love this part:

Mr. Cohen, who has remained close to Mr. Bradley, smiles when reminded of the long-ago campaign. “That’s just my view of the world,” he says. “Always be more prepared than anyone else, because there’s a huge advantage to knowing everything that might be asked and having given at least some thought to the answer.”

2. TEDification v. Edification {design observer}

Smart, long take on the explosion of the TED talk. Among my favorite parts:

TED lays out the right path: popular access to advanced knowledge about big subjects. But the project has to be redirected as a process of enquiry rather than epiphany, requiring not only passion but also patience. Consider that one of the fundamental challenges for design is to confront what Horst Rittel described four decades ago as the wicked problem. For wicked problems there are no real solutions, only makeshift and contingent negotiation. “Dealing with wicked problems,” Rittel conceded, “is always political.” [21] The incessant waves of eighteen minutes of epiphanic techno-complexity are working to deny complexity — to deny the wickedness of wicked problems, to detach us from their political reality, to deny our limited ability to solve them and to encourage hubris where we need humility.

3. Google’s Road Map to Global Domination {new york times}

Google v. the world.

A Frenchman who has lived half his 49 years in the United States, [Luc] Vincent was never in the Marines. But he is a leader in a new great game: the Internet land grab, which can be reduced to three key battles over three key conceptual territories. What came first, conquered by Google’s superior search algorithms. Who was next, and Facebook was the victor. But where, arguably the biggest prize of all, has yet to be completely won.

Where-type questions — the kind that result in a little map popping up on the search-results page — account for some 20 percent of all Google queries done from the desktop. But ultimately more important by far is location-awareness, the sort of geographical information that our phones and other mobile devices already require in order to function. In the future, such location-awareness will be built into more than just phones. All of our stuff will know where it is — and that awareness will imbue the real world with some of the power of the virtual. Your house keys will tell you that they’re still on your desk at work. Your tools will remind you that they were lent to a friend. And your car will be able to drive itself on an errand to retrieve both your keys and your tools.

Friday Link List: Design & Typography Edition

1. Jonathan Harris Interview {design matters}

Jonathan Harris is an artist and computer scientist whose work explores the relationship between humans and technology. His projects include We Feel Fine, a search engine for human emotions; I Want You To Want Me, an installation about online dating; Cowbird, a public library of human experience; 10 x 10, a system for encapsulating moments in time; The Whale Hunt, a series of photographs timed to match his heartbeat; and I Love Your Work, an interactive film about the daily lives of sex workers.

Jonathan has so many cool projects. Check out this manifesto about big data.

2. The Heartbleed Logo: How to Get People Talking About Internet Security {newsweek}

You’ve probably come across the bug’s logo: a crisp red heart that has five dripping bloody stalactites descending from it, suggesting that something important is bleeding out or crying. It’s on the Heartbleed Web site, put up by a security firm called Codenomicon, which co-discovered the bug. The logo is everywhere—and looks like a scary version of the American Heart Association’s Heart-Check symbol. It’s evocative and simple, and perhaps cheerful and sinister at the same time: Is this logo telling me my food is good for my heart, or is it telling me that my private data might have been made public?

3. Typekit Practice

Typekit Practice [is] a place where novices and experts alike can hone their typographic skills. We hope it will help students learn, help teachers teach, and help professionals stay sharp.

Via {daring fireball}

Friday Link List

1. The Inside Story of Aaron Schwartz and MIT {boston globe}

More than a year after Swartz killed himself rather than face prosecution, questions about MIT’s handling of the hacking case persist.

See also: this documentary.

 

2. Sad Youtube {tldr}

YouTube’s infamous for having one of the worst comment sections on the internet. There’s no reason to ever read them. Unless you’re writer & filmmaker Mark Slutsky. Mark spends hours scouring the comments section on YouTube, and occasionally, scattered in the dross, he finds small poignant stories for his site Sad Youtube.

 

3. Tetris Played on 29-Story Philly Skyscraper {daring fireball}

As part of Philly Tech Week, Dr. Frank Lee’s latest creation — a two-sided game of Tetris on the 29-story Cira Centre — illuminates the Philadelphia skyline.

Saw this in person—it was pretty cool.

 

4. If Daily Mail Articles Headlines Were Based on the Comments Section {tldr again}

Web designer Richard Westenra has created an ingenious browser plugin that swaps out the headlines from the British tabloid The Daily Mail with user comments about them.