Links For Wednesday 15th December 2010

  • Here's an interesting thing to think about, particularly in light of the fact, that at my company, for example, I often get certain tasks because I know the code better, and can therefore accomplish the same task faster. Yet, we charge by the hour (well, actually by the ten-minute block). This essentially means that exactly because I've got more experience than some of my colleagues, clients pay less for my services. Yet the company has far more cash and training time invested in me. The obvious solution would be to charge more for my time than for some of my less experienced colleagues, but obviously, that's a hard sell to clients, not least because they lack the skills and knowledge to correctly evaluate whether it's better to get me, or someone else, on a given project. Especially when for some projects, I will work faster, and for others, I will be slower, because it's code I don't know so well, but one of my colleagues might know better.
  • Hmm. This sounds like the good business to me. At some point in the not *too* distant, I need to get to grips with iOS development, and I like that there's now a simple Cloud-based DB that I can use for storage/sync.
  • Naomi Wolf produces a far clearer, far more on the nose, summation of the point she was articulating when she got leapt on but the left wing blogosphere last week. It is not a defence of Assange, it is a condemnation of the current rate of international prosecution for crimes far worse than what Assange is accused of. It wasn't a defence of Assange when she wrote it last week, but plenty of people out there got distracted by about seven words in amongst a much wider point, and her real point got lost. So she's restated it, and you should read what she has to say.
  • This is interesting. I've been trying to find numbers/commentary on wikileaks from a feminist perspective that isn't focused on Assange and the allegations against him, and failing. I'd like to produce an article on the real-world effects of wikileaks as regards women and/or social justice, but it's proving very hard to find even vague commentary in that vein, never mind hard numbers. This is the closest to useful commentary (that isn't about the allegations) I've found thus far.

Links For Monday 13th December 2010

  • For very real and serious: if you have *ever* left a comment on a Gawker blog (or if you're not sure if you might have or not), you need to check whether any email address you might have used is in this spreadsheet – instructions on how to do it are there in the right hand column, I'm happy to explain more if people need me to – and if it is, and you've used the same password anywhere else (and if you can't remember, assume you have) then you need to change it right now, as that email address and password are now out in the public domain.
    (tags: security)

Links For Friday 10th December 2010

  • Your second stock-filler recommendation for the day! What are you waiting for? Go! Get shopping! Buy my friend's fine literary product and help make the world a better place!
    (tags: books friends)
  • I know Stross is one of my regular linkees, and I'm sure a lot of you glide over him at this point, but I thought this was a particularly interesting read, and I commend it to anyone who is feeling frustrated by the apparently lack of ability for members of the public to influence anything in the wake of stuff like Wikileaks and the student fees protests. It won't tell you how to change things, but it provides an interesting perspective on the whys of the current situation, that lead to some interesting thoughts on how one might affect change in the medium-term future.
  • Budgie's Fast Fiction Challenge, now in its second volume. I commend it to your attention as a perfect stocking filler.
  • Reverting to Type: exhibition. Must go see.
  • Interested mostly into the insights into conversational interface, rather than the actual product here. For consideration: pair a more general use version of this with some voice recognition software, and it won't be long before all those SF voice-activated computers become a reality.
    (tags: berg interface)

Links For Wednesday 8th December 2010

  • This one's doing the rounds today – the story of an autistic child who has been removed from his father's care, for seemingly, no sensible reason other than bureaucratic procedure. It it is as presented (and I've seen a lot of people prefix retweeting it with that, I suspect because like me people simply don't want to believe that this *can* be true) than this is deeply saddening, and Something Ought To Be Done. I cannot fathom how this could be allowed to happen – it would seemingly require *far* too many people who are allegedly "carers" to be Orwellian bureaucratic jobsworths with a shred of human decency or willingness to stop and think. So: a link that deserves to do the rounds, in the hope of Something Getting Done.

Links For Monday 6th December 2010

  • On the one hand: I'm sorry that the fundraising hasn't been as as successful as they hoped, because it is a good cause, on the other, surely a child of six might have thought that while people *like* having celebrity drivel as part of their Twitter/Farcebook experience, it's not something people would actively *miss* if it went away – whichever marketroid through the campaign up is clearly not very good at their job, especially as the campaign ensures it's own silence – they can't remind people that they're not there in order to drive donations without violating their pledge. (No, I'm not donating via said campaign. Show me a cause where I can get celebrities to stop Twittering/Facebooking for good by pledging, and I'll get the chequebook out.)
  • More grist to my mill in re: getting rid of books as physical objects: cheap POD books, which is where we're heading for book-as-physical-object (unless you want current bestsellers, which I almost never do) tend to be shoddier things. A good POD book is just as good as a regular book, but I've seen some very shoddy examples in the past, where I would definitely rather have had the ebook.

Links For Thursday 2nd December 2010

Links For Wednesday 1st December 2010

  • The stories of early space exploration from the original NASA transcripts. Now open to the public in a searchable, linkable format. Well, this will eat chunks of my time…
  • There's a short film competition happening here. Prize is a grand, and, well, it's a bit thin on the ground for entries. I'm just sayin' that if anyone fancied making a short film, they'd stand a decent chance of winning cash.

Links For Tuesday 23rd November 2010

  • Web API for extracting clutter from web pages and just returning the content. Nice!
  • Americans! Have you ever wondered why everyone hates you? It's because you elect people like this, and then apparently give them a chance of being in hugely influential of policy areas where they can fuck up the planet for people who didn't get a say in electing them, on the basis of some bullshit religious beliefs, that, in a civilised country, would disqualify them as a candidate for dog catcher. Seriously, America, please get on with reforming your political system and society to get rid of people like this. By force, if necessary.

Links For Monday 22nd November 2010

  • I have elderly family who have to wear bags exactly like this. The thought that anyone could consider it acceptable to humiliate someone in a manner like this makes me furious – I just keep imagining what it would feel like if it happened to my family. I reckon I would expect them to have legal recourse, and the assurance that someone had lost their job over this, because I don't care about security half so much as I care about basic human dignity and respect.
  • Stop what you are doing, and go and look at this link. I promise you: it will make your day 100% better. This is amazing and wonderful stuff.

Links For Friday 19th November 2010

  • I'm reminded of reading someone's new definition of cool "If I'm hanging out with you, I never see your mobile phone". I know I'm, ah, less than faultless with this, but then, I've never claimed to be coo (althought I've tried to do better since reading that particular article). Still, getting one of these might be a good start. Although, reflecting on it a bit, there's a fine line between signalling to someone that they're important to you, and acting like you want brownie points for simple politeness…
    (tags: phone manners)
  • No idea what I'll use this stuff for, mind. But I bet I will at some point.
  • I imagine that I'll find a use for this information at some point.
    (tags: uk history)