1. a pile of stuff #26

    At Granta Online, six poets are interviewed about Poetry Parnassus, an enormous poetry love-in happening at Southbank in London this week.

    Susan Hawthorne reviews Robyn Rowland’s Seasons of doubt and burning: New and Selected Poems at Cordite.

    Jerry Seinfeld’s new web comedy, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, premieres online on July 19.

    How to sort out Facebook and those tiresome not-so-new email addresses they have lumbered some of us with. (Apparently they may have synced with your friends’ email on your phone as well! Who knew?) From ReadWriteWeb.

    Finally, a 76-strong booklist of upcoming titles for the second half of the year from The Millions.

    And the Complete Review reports on the rentrée littéraire in France. Not the Tour. Just for a change.

    And yes, this is crossposted at Reeling and Writhing, my old Oz book blog.

  2. 19:14 3rd Apr 2012

    Notes: 1103

    Reblogged from explore-blog

    Tags: designtech

    image: Download


This manifesto for visual culture from Rencontres d’Arles is a fine addition to these 5 manifestos for the creative life.
(ᔥThe Histograms ↬Quipsologies)


    This manifesto for visual culture from Rencontres d’Arles is a fine addition to these 5 manifestos for the creative life.

    (The Histograms Quipsologies)

  3.  I first heard about the Gizmodo piece via Jay Rosen’s Twitter feed. Go read! all will be revealed…

  4. A useful collaboration is on the way, reports Jonathan Gray of the Open Knowledge Foundation:

    A little while ago I posted some ideas for a project called OpenPhilosophy.org, which would enable users to transcribe, translate, annotate and create collections of philosophical texts which have entered the public domain.

    As was announced last week on this blog, the project has secured some funding from JISC, who champion digital technology for use in higher education in the UK. The project will be a collaboration between Goldsmiths, University of London, the University of Oxford and the Open Knowledge Foundation. It will also involve students and staff at other institutions in the UK and further afield.

    Nigel Warburton is on the advisory board. Read more here

  5. This is quite a story - valuable papers by Alan Turing became affordable for the Bletchley Park Trust, thanks to a sad tweet, a viral campaign and some grunt from Google.

    Director of museum operations Kelsey Griffin spotted they had come up for sale at Christie’s auction house, and took matters into her own hands, turning to the social media network Twitter.

    Disappointed to realise that the cost of this “very valuable cache of Turing’s works” was way out of the reach of the Bletchley Park Trust, she posted what she called “a desolate tweet”.

    "The guide price of £300,000 and £500,000 meant that there was absolutely no way the Bletchley Park Trust could afford to buy them," she explained.

    "I sent out a desolate tweet saying ‘If only the trust could afford to buy these for the museum and its visitors’."

    The call for help was spotted by Bletchley supporter and IT journalist Gareth Halfacree, who promptly launched a campaign to save the papers for the nation, which became viral across the Internet.

    "Incredibly he raised £28,500 within 11 days," said Ms Griffin.

    Search engine Google then pledged $100,000 (£63,800) and together with a “significant sum” from a private donor, the trust had £100,000 to spend on auction day.

    Read more. 

    Naturally, I heard about this on Twitter! Via @doctorow and @weelibrarian.

  6. 14:55 26th Jan 2012

    Notes: 5

    Tags: tech

    We have a dialectical relationship with our machines: We create systems and they recreate us. We create computers first as complements to ourselves, to do the tasks we’re not particularly good at, things involving precision: long calculations, for example, and simple, repetitive tasks. All this is fine when we are using, say, a calculator. But as computers become ubiquitous, we find ourselves surrounded with these things based on precision. So more and more of the things we need to accomplish are tasks defined by computers more rigidly than we as humans would define them for ourselves. We are forced to become more precise in our actions to satisfy the needs of our own systems, which we built initially as helpers and which eventually gain a kind of power over us.

    Ellen Ullman interview - Close to the Machine

    This is one of the most interesting statements in this interview with programmer Ellen Ullman, in issue 15 of Stay Free magazine. Link via Maud Newton.

  7. Free shipping, free movies, free books, for $80 a year. What, exactly, is Amazon up to? There has to be some master plan, because Amazon is spending itself silly to pull this off. Because the offer is limited to owners of Kindles — it doesn’t work if you use the Kindle service on an iPad, for instance — it is intended to sell more Kindles.

    David Pogue, NYT tech columnist, on the lending arrangements for Prime subscribers at Amazon. (Link via Melville House.)

    Amazon Lights the Fire With Free Books - NYTimes.com

  8. 19:16 4th Nov 2011

    Notes: 202

    Reblogged from coolchicksfromhistory

    Tags: techhistory


    In 1842 Ada Lovelace transcribed an algorithm to compute Bernouli numbers to a form tailored for Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine, and as a result wrote the first computer program in human history.

  9. One year old thinks magazine is an iPad - via Laughing Squid

    Is this a baby whose family don’t use picture books, or would she just do this anyway to photographs because of the digital input? (wonder why they haven’t bothered to turn their video around.)

  10. 19:05 2nd Mar 2011

    Notes: 45

    Reblogged from the-feature

    Tags: tech

    My tour guides don’t mention the nets until I do. Not to avoid the topic, I don’t think—the suicides are the reason I am at a Foxconn plant in Shenzhen, a bustling industrial city in southern China—but simply because they are so prevalent. Foxconn, the single largest private employer in mainland China, manufactures many of the products—motherboards, camera components, MP3 players—that make up the world’s $150 billion consumer-electronics industry. Foxconn’s output accounts for nearly 40 percent of that revenue. Altogether, the company employs about a million people, nearly half of whom work at the 20-year-old Shenzhen plant. But until two summers ago, most Americans had never heard of Foxconn.

    Joel Johnson in Wired Magazine, via givemesomethingtoread.