Yaba Yaba

what? another blog? you must be joking.

Archive for January 2008

wear it on your sleeve

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Bazaar.org were pushing these sweet badges at the JISC-Emerge event last week.I often wonder why people subject themselves to software serfdom when there’s high quality free & open alternatives. One explanation is that if you give stuff for free, you can’t conjour a budget to buy superbowl ads. So its nice to see the European commision put their money to good use.

In fact, this just gives me an idea. I mean, this theory – that the only reason feudal technology (Mac, Windows, whatever) has a lead on the good guys is that they have a huge advertising budget – its just a thoery, right? So it needs to be researched and validated or refuted. And there are only two ways to research it:

(a) ban advertisment for commercial software / content.

(b) fund a similar scale budget for advertising free stuff.

If anyone’s game for writing a research proposal, say for FP7, I’m happy to elaborate b.


Written by yishaym

January 31, 2008 at 2:55 am

good designer karma for sale

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Thor Fredrik Eie tells me that the 2008 bad usability calendar is out.

leopardism web2ism If you have any thing to do with interface / web design, please, please, get a copy. hang it before your eyes and reduce the suffering ours have to endure.

Written by yishaym

January 29, 2008 at 1:04 pm

Quickies: Intelligent Sticky Notes

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great. just great. now my stick-it notes can spam me too.

(digg story)

Written by yishaym

January 23, 2008 at 11:14 am

Posted in technology

The missing Soufflé, er, ah, link.

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Human life histories, as compared to those of other primates and mammals, have at least four distinctive characteristics: an exceptionally long lifespan, an extended period of juvenile dependence, support of reproduction by older postreproductive individuals, and male support of reproduction through the provisioning of females and their offspring. Another distinctive feature of our species is a large brain, with its associated psychological attributes: increased capacities for learning, cognition, and insight.

And where does it all come from?

Our theory is that those four life history characteristics and extreme intelligence are co-evolved responses to a dietary shift toward high-quality, nutrient-dense, and difficult-to-acquire food resources.

You know, its not easy finding a decent meal. You need big brains for that.

(Kaplan et al, 2000)

Written by yishaym

January 9, 2008 at 2:42 am

Posted in food, health, science

More of these please!

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No, not the stupid phone. look closely.

( digg story)

Written by yishaym

January 8, 2008 at 11:46 pm

Warren Ellis » FuTube

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“Happy birthday to me oh fuck I want to die,” Dave muttered to himself as he unlocked his flat door. Twenty-two years old, and the first day at the job he’d always wanted hadn’t gone so well. If you’re working at the Breakthrough Physics Institute, he told himself, you ought to be able to operate a coffee maker without setting anything or anyone on fire.

Read on, its short & sweet.

Written by yishaym

January 6, 2008 at 3:29 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

you’re joking, right?

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Ur, hello? Is this the US of A? You’re about to have an election where a third of the votes are counted by machines, closed source machines who had been tested by a good shake, and many of which run Windows CE? Windows CE?

One famous example is the “sliding finger bug” on the Diebold AccuVote-TSX, the machine used in Cuyahoga. In 2005, the state of California complained that the machines were crashing. In tests, Diebold determined that when voters tapped the final “cast vote” button, the machine would crash every few hundred ballots. They finally intuited the problem: their voting software runs on top of Windows CE, and if a voter accidentally dragged his finger downward while touching “cast vote” on the screen, Windows CE interpreted this as a “drag and drop” command. The programmers hadn’t anticipated that Windows CE would do this, so they hadn’t programmed a way for the machine to cope with it. The machine just crashed.

To be honest, the American system has much more fundamental flaws than this. I mean, what’s wrong with one person – one vote? And what’s the big idea about every miserable little county set its own standards?

Maybe its time to send in some UN inspectors. Or someone to help design a simple protocol that works.

| digg story

Written by yishaym

January 6, 2008 at 1:33 am