Tech


“I” is often unnecessary. I mean, who else would be speaking (in such a self-centered medium)? Gaining a new appreciation for Spanish. (This one has made it’s way into my email.)

Conjunctions such as “and” “because” “since”, etc, can often be replaced with a period and left unsaid, merely implied. Likely NOT a good idea for email.

Actually using my pretty decent vocabulary. Picking the precise word becomes very important; active verbs are usually the shorter way to go.

Incidentally, blogging is totally jacking up my concept of title case. Not capitalizing “about” and “from” just doesn’t look right.

He repeatedly declares that good technology requires the liberal arts, to global audiences.

Now (okay, couple weeks back, I’m slow) he shoots down the classic student entitlement whine.

Student:

Because I have had such good experiences as a college student using Apple products, I was incredibly surprised to find Apple’s Media Relations Department to be absolutely unresponsive to my questions, which (as I had repeatedly told them in voicemail after voicemail) are vital to my academic grade as a student journalist.

Jobs:

Our goals do not include helping you get a good grade. Sorry.

Jobs is a wacko, and there are plenty of days I hate Apple despite being a die-hard Mac user, but you gotta appreciate.

Roger A. Safian, a senior data security analyst at Northwestern, says that unlike Amazon, the university is unfortunately vulnerable to brute-force attacks in that it doesn’t lock out accounts after failed log-ins. The reason, he says, is that anyone could use a lockout policy to try logging in to a victim’s account, “knowing that you won’t succeed, but also knowing that the victim won’t be able to use the account, either.” (Such thoughts may occur to a student facing an unwelcome exam, who could block a professor from preparations.)

The NYT on password security.

So, Apple released a new version of iTunes on Wednesday, and changed the icon for the first time since 2006 or so, and a lot of people think the icon is ugly.

So, yesterday, the iTunes 10 icon started tweeting. And for about six hours or so, suddenly about twenty different computer icons were tweeting, snarking on each other, pushing back at people. The Safari icon is a good place to get a bit of the flavor. People are talking about it under #iconsftw—it seems to still be going on a bit.

And, yeah, pure trivial silliness—but also a spin on the internet meme that I think takes a bit more work than hashtags, and works a bit more directly interactively than lolcats, and maybe has something intriguing to tell us about personas…. And I’m not really paying attention and don’t know much about various types of fandom, but what’s going on with these Star Trek characters?

Also, is anyone on twitter that I’m not already following? Because I’m terrible at commenting these days, and have just been lurking (or letting the RSS pile up over a thousand). And I’m not posting very much, either (though per usual, thoughts on brands, sewing, and community are brewing in drafts). So, anyhow, leave a twitter name in the comments if you’ve got it.

We’d worry about making our diaries public because that would tell everyone what we think. We’re less clear about the implications of letting strangers collect information about what we want, what we like, what we buy, and what we habitually do late at night when we’re tired.

Teresa Nielsen Hayden at Making Light

From a comment in discussion:

I, like much of my generation, don’t actually expect privacy anymore. We understand gaming the algorithm so that the information we would like to bury gets buried behind a wealth of other links and information, too deep to find casually.

ETA, though not entirely the same idea (this one you should definitely go read):

Standing at the front desk of a restaurant on the phone with a complete stranger was the absolute last thing I expected from a harmless tweet about meeting friends from the internet and a link to my location.

So, maybe the Kindle beats the iPad as an ebook reader (although, at $140, I could justify a Kindle now and still buy myself a second-generation iPad next year), but with the iPad, things like this are available to a mass audience with a couple clicks:

One example is the ‘Enhanced Edition’ of Nixonland, by Rick Perlstein, a chronicle of our 37th President. The book contains the full text of the book first published in 2008. It also includes 27 videos of the former President and newsreels that put those turbulent years into perspective.

Or things like this:

Civil War: America’s Epic Struggle (US$4.99) from MultiEducator Inc. is a full history course in an iPad and iPhone app. It contains at least as much information as most textbooks on the Civil War at a fraction of the cost, while adding elements that no textbook can. There are 24 multimedia presentations, some as long as nine minutes, a nice selection of music popular during the Civil War, and a wonderful navigation system that just makes sense.

I think there are people out there who see the internet as a way of employing the same old techniques of SHILL, SHILL, SHILL. A hundred years ago, they would have rolled up to you in a wagon, shouting about their tonic. Fifty years ago, they would have rolled their vacuum cleaners up to your door.

Maureen Johnson, “Manifesto

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