Internet

Internet & Web

Scholrly: another attempt at academic search?

scholr.ly: Research, fine-tuned.
The first users in the early days of the Internet were professors and academics who shared their research and resources with unprecedented ease and speed. But nowadays, there is a dearth of lovingly crafted tools made for those who first popularized the Internet.
[VIA]

Building a State-of-the-Art Speller

Bing Search Quality Insights: "Is it Swarzinegar, Swarneger, Scwarznagger or Schwartiznegar? These are just a few of more than 2,000 different ways users on Bing have typed their queries in hope of searching for “Schwarzenegger.” The aim of the Bing Speller is to correct these queries so users receive relevant web results that match their intent even when their query is misspelt. A great speller makes a search engine feel like magic to the users. In this blog my colleague Jim Kleban provides an overview of Bing Speller technology with some examples of recent improvements we just shipped in December."

Library of Congress has amassed 170 billion tweets

The Library of Congress says it's amassed about 170 billion tweets since it began collecting an archive of all Twitter messages in 2010.
Twitter is donating its archive to the library, going back to the first one posted in 2006.

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The Joint New Year's Eve Special

In concert with the team behind the Ubuntu UK Podcast, the Air Staff at Erie Looking Productions presented via WBCQ a New Year's Eve special broadcast via shortwave radio. Now that the show has finished being broadcast, it is being made available for download.

Download here (MP3). You can subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Stephen's shopping list of items to replace hardware damaged and destroyed due to adverse circumstances over the past week, which includes requiring replacement of our dead in-house server with a lower-powered Raspberry Pi at this point, can be found here where direct purchasing is possible to send the items directly to the Air Staff.

Creative Commons License
The Joint New Year's Eve Special produced by Gloria Kellat of the Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

What Turned Jaron Lanier Against the Web?

Silicon Valley visionary, pioneer of virtual reality, recants his faith in Web 2.0: "You can draw an analogy to what happened with communism, where at some point you just have to say there’s too much wrong with these experiments”

Full article - Smithsonian Magazine

The Web We Lost

Post discussing the philosophy underpinning Facebook, Twitter., etc, and what web users have lost by adopting it.

The Web We Lost

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Dec. 10, 1944: Web Visionary Passes Into Obscurity

Wired's This Day in Tech Blog remembers Paul Otlet and his dream of organizing the world's information. Sound familiar?

"Some historians see in Otlet’s work a prototype of the World Wide Web and the hyperlink. Although unsuccessful, it was one of the first known attempts to provide a framework for connecting all recorded culture by creating flexible links that could rapidly lead researchers from one document to another — and perhaps make audible the previously unheard echoes between them."

Browser Wars Flare Again, on Little Screens

And as the cloud grows more integral, both for businesses and people, the browser companies are engaged in a new battle to win our allegiance that will affect how we use the Internet.

It’s an echo of the so-called browser wars of the 1990s, when Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator fought for dominance on the personal computer. This time, though, the struggle is shaping up to be over which company will control the mobile world — with browsers on smartphones and tablets. Entrenched businesses are at stake. Google’s browser-based business apps, for instance, threaten Microsoft’s desktop software, and mobile Web apps threaten Apple’s App Store.

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Search app constantly scans the changing web

Springwise pointed the way to http://www.result.ly Instead of making computer users repeatedly search multiple sites over time to find what they want, Resultly monitors changes in results and combines them into one stream of information.

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LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #224

This week's program has a somewhat cheerful essay talking about cultural balkanization as seen through the lens of mid-season television show cancellations. Notice was also given that there will likely be a special dropped into the feed without warning during the week as proceedings continue at the World Conference on International Telecommunications.

Related links:

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Stephen's Silly Summation of Christmas Wishes can be found here via Amazon, as always.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.

She’s Got Some Big Ideas

Maria Popova is the mastermind of Brain Pickings, one of the faster growing literary empires on the Internet, yet she is virtually unknown.

Article in the NYT

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LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #223

This week's program has not one but two features from the United States Department of Agriculture that may prove useful to reference librarians and selectors. In the essay we talk about the World Conference on International Telecommunications 2012 and how it may bode ill for the Internet not to mention that NPR reports about such as well.

Related links:

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Stephen's Silly Summation of Christmas Wishes can be found here via Amazon, as always.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.

Internet Traffic Management Changes To Be Discussed Next Week (bumped)

The current holder of the Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law, Dr. Michael Geist, has a post up discussing the possible imposition of "sending party pays" rules to Internet traffic. In that scenario, sites serving content would be required to pay for the cost of sending content to requesting users while the requesting users would not be required to pay any such surcharge.

Reuters reports that this and more is set to come up at a meeting in Dubai sponsored by the International Telecommunications Union, a United Nations affiliate, kicking off next week. Reuters reports that individual nation-states are seeking codification in multilateral treaties of the ability for their nation-states to be able to shape the Internet within their countries as well as destroy the veil of anonymity. Reuters notes that some developing countries and telecommunications providers are seeking the imposition of sending party pays rules.

Forbes contributor Larry Downes writes that leaked documents from the International Telecommunications Union appear to set out a social media campaign to help ease concerns over that intergovernmental body's taking some level of regulatory control over the Internet.

As to the libraries angle...the architecture of the Internet let alone the economics of the Internet are up for intergovernmental negotiation in December which may impact how electronic services are provided by your agency in the future either directly or indirectly.

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #222

This week's episode starts off with a brief economic discussion and then heads into a news miscellany. Believe it or not, LISTen has now been around for five years as of this week.

To cheat and spoil the last lines of this episode:

This episode came to you from the south shores of Lake Erie. This program first originated from metro Las Vegas. Where might it come from at this time next year?

Related links:

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Support and subsistence items for the production team can be purchased and sent from here via Amazon, as always.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.

You Can’t Say That on the Internet

A BASTION of openness and counterculture, Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A. But its hyper-tolerant facade often masks deeply conservative, outdated norms that digital culture discreetly imposes on billions of technology users worldwide.

What is the vehicle for this new prudishness? Dour, one-dimensional algorithms, the mathematical constructs that automatically determine the limits of what is culturally acceptable.

Opinion piece at NYT

Government Requests For Info And Censorship Are Increasing Rapidly

Google's latest transparency report is out and the notable bit of info is that governments continue to increase how often they're seeking info about users. The increase there is a steady growth which is immensely worrisome. There's also an equally troubling increase in the attempts to censor content via Google, though in that case, it was relatively flat until the first half of this year when it shot way, way up.

Via TechDirt...

I Heart Wikis

“In other words, if you see something wrong, fix it yourself. Don’t just stand around saying somebody should do something. Be someone. Because on a wiki, there is no default value for somebody.”

"If you’re a wiki fanboi like me feel free to leave your suggestions for new wiki users in the comments."

Wikipedia Is Nearing Completion, in a Sense

It may seem impossible for an encyclopedia of everything to ever near completion, but at least for the major articles on topics like big wars, important historical figures, central scientific concepts, the English-language Wikipedia's pretty well filled out. (There is, of course, room for improvement in articles that have received less attention, but that is a different, yet still very important, set of challenges.) There's always going to be some tidying -- better citations, small updates, new links, cleaner formatting -- but the bulk of the work, the actual writing and structuring of the articles, has already been done. "There are more and more readers of Wikipedia, but they have less and less new to add," writes historian and Wikipedia editor Richard Jensen in the latest issue of The Journal of Military History.

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Finally! A Use For That 80 Terabyte Thumb Drive You Didn't Know What To Do With

80 terabytes of archived web crawl data available for research
Internet Archive crawls and saves web pages and makes them available for viewing through the Wayback Machine because we believe in the importance of archiving digital artifacts for future generations to learn from. In the process, of course, we accumulate a lot of data.

We are interested in exploring how others might be able to interact with or learn from this content if we make it available in bulk. To that end, we would like to experiment with offering access to one of our crawls from 2011 with about 80 terabytes of WARC files containing captures of about 2.7 billion URIs. The files contain text content and any media that we were able to capture, including images, flash, videos, etc.

Librarians as political fact-checkers: New feature in online voters guide

The Living Voters Guide, recent winner of the Evergreen Apps Challenge, has released its 2012 update that allows Washington state voters to learn about different ballot measures, compare the pros and cons of each and sound off with fellow contributors.

And if there’s a particular fact in question, they can call on the expertise of a librarian.

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