This is my dumping ground for quotes and other stuff relating to the wonderful world of digital & communications.
The idea of a meme is itself new. Coined in 1976, the word “meme” – something that spreads rapidly through a culture – was restricted to scientific contexts until the mid-1990s, according to the Nexis database. Since then the usage of the word has exploded, more than tripling in the last five years.
The Sydney Opera House speaks of the internet as its eighth stage, allowing it to send entire performances to anyone with an internet connection for less money than it would cost to send them a ticket.
It’s remarkable to me that professors, artists, musicians and politicians are seizing this opportunity so much more quickly than a lot of the business community
some 3,054… 50% of the world’s total languages — are set to die out by 2100. If there is hope, it lies in the world’s centers of information — such as Google. The search giant’s philanthropic arm, Google.org, has launched the Endangered Language project, a website devoted to preserving those ancient tongues that are now only spoken by a few thousand of us.
The concept of scientific taste may be explained in another way by saying that the person who possesses the flair for choosing profitable lines of investigation is able to see further whither the work is leading than are other people, because he has the habit of using his imagination to look far ahead instead of restricting his thinking to established knowledge and the immediate problem. He may not be able to state explicitly his reasons or envisage any particular hypothesis, for he may see only vague hints that it leads towards one or another of several crucial questions
ORBIS: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World reconstructs the time cost and financial expense associated with a wide range of different types of travel in antiquity. The model is based on a simplified version of the giant network of cities, roads, rivers and sea lanes that framed movement across the Roman Empire. It broadly reflects conditions around 200 CE but also covers a few sites and roads created in late antiquity.
The model consists of 751 sites, most of them urban settlements but also including important promontories and mountain passes, and covers close to 10 million square kilometers (~4 million square miles) of terrestrial and maritime space. 268 sites serve as sea ports. The road network encompasses 84,631 kilometers (52,587 miles) of road or desert tracks, complemented by 28,272 kilometers (17,567 miles) of navigable rivers and canals
EMOTIONAL TECHNOLOGY — … humanity translated through 1s and 0s. Artfully crafted technology has the potential to touch us like any other art form. The web takes cinema and turns it into a two-way conversation with the viewer. We are at the inception point of a brand new art form that will provide us with the great canons of the next century. Now it’s just a matter of figuring out what to make with it.
Code is like a poem; it has to follow certain structural requirements, and yet out of that structure can come art. But code is art that does something. It is the assembly of something brand new from nothing but an idea.
The definition of what makes someone an expert is changing. They search for expertise in Wikipedia’s pages, and they find it, but what they’re looking for — what they call expertise — uses different signals to project itself. Expertise, to these researchers, isn’t who a writer is but what a writer knows, as measured by what they read online.
National libraries have the right to demand a copy of every printed book published on their territory (and they also get huge quantities of other documents too). But they have no mandate to collect the software or smartphone apps without which much electronic data remains encrypted gibberish. Regulators are pondering the problem. In early May America’s Copyright Office will hold public hearings to discuss exemptions to the ban on circumventing DRM. In Britain the government wants to make it compulsory for publishers, including software-makers, to provide the British Library with a copy of the finished version of everything they produce within a month of publication. The proposed law will allow the library to harvest web pages and material hidden behind paywalls or login requirements. The sole exceptions are social networks and sites comprising only video or music
Already, NASA has lost data from some of its earliest missions to the moon because the machines used to read the tapes were scrapped and cannot be rebuilt
digital data often has a surprisingly short life. “If we’re not careful, we will know more about the beginning of the 20th century than the beginning of the 21st century,” says Adam Farquhar, who is in charge the British Library’s digital-preservation efforts.