Yaba Yaba

what? another blog? you must be joking.

Archive for March 2008

Hi, I’m a PC

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(digg it)

(ht Cory for bitstrips)


Written by yishaym

March 29, 2008 at 2:44 pm

Posted in LOL, technology

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oh, the webs we weave, now in a browser near you

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Twine is looking like the first real world web3.0 (aka semantic web, aka ggg) service. Twine introduces itself as –

a new service that helps you organize, share and discover information around your interests, with networks of like-minded people. You can use Twine individually, with friends, or with groups, teams and communities.

yawn. been there, done that. right? except that Twine is semantic. It –

… automatically organizes information, learns about interests and makes recommendations. The more you use Twine, the better it gets to know you and the more useful it becomes.

In Twine not all tags are equal. A book’s author’s name is not the same as the place he lives or the organization he’s affiliated with. And not all things are equal, a book is not a bookmark, is not a video about it. Twine distinguishes between things, and tries to display content appropriately to its type. It also tries, with some success, to guess types tags and categories. Really interesting stuff. And it’ll be even more interesting when they get it to work properly (they’re not that far).

Another interesting thing about it is that everything is a twine, which is a kind of stream of stuff, and you can tune to, create and interleave many twines. So there’s the stuff I share with my family, the stuff I share with my office friends, the stuff I share with my high-school mates. There are some overlaps and cross-connections and I can manage them all by routing items to twines and inviting people to listen to the relevant threads.

A fresh approach, but is it too complex? It looks like its been designed for networked minds. Those of us who have been to all the twitters and pownces and are ready to move on. How many are there? And will our normal friends be able to follow a single twine, ignoring the rest? Time will tell.

(In case you’re about to ask, I’m out of invites but leave a comment here & I’ll call you when I get a new batch)

Written by yishaym

March 28, 2008 at 12:08 pm

Mapping electoral fraud in Zimbabwe

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Here’s another great story from Ethan Zukerman on how political activists are using technology to balance the advantage of the organized state. I think that’s what Clay Shirky means by here comes everybody.

… All this is useful context in considering the project that activist organization Sokwanele announced today: a Googlemaps mashup of election-rigging incidents. Each icon on the map corresponds to a media report of an incident that controvenes SADC standards for a free and fair election. Clicking on an icon will take you to the issue of Sokwanele’

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Written by yishaym

March 27, 2008 at 6:04 pm

Oi, here we go again (or: boycott, yes, but do it right)

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Engage tells us that the national executive of UCU backs new boycott proposal. Engage give a very well-thought review of why the boycott is morally wrong and strategically stupid. I won’t repeat their arguments – go read them yourself. You should also read Shuli Dichter‘s account of why the Supreme Monitoring Council, the most broadly representative umbrella organization of the Arabs of Israel, directors of Arab non-profit organizations and the joint associations of Arabs and Jews did not accede to the boycott calls, despite the pressure they were under to do just that. Shuli is the co-director of Sikkuy, the Association for the Advancement of Civic Equality. His view is shared by Mohammad Darawshe, the Abraham Fund’s Director of Development for Europe and Israel. When asked recently, his response was clear and simple: the boycott is stupid, harmful and cheap.

And here’s a twist of historical humor: this news of a fresh attempt to boycott Israels bastions of forward thinking come at the same week when we are flooded with rabid rabbis calling for discriminant and even violent action against Arabs. What better illustration of the ludicrous hypocrisy of the boycott campaign? I mean, if you really care about anything other than your smug sense of moral superiority, your pleasures of intellectual colonialism, how about boycotting Dov Lior and Shmuel Eliyahu? Or better yet, supporting the Abraham Fund in taking legal action against them?

Israel posts tender for 250MW solar power plant

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Israel’s ministry of national infrastructure has just published an international tender for the construction of two solar power plants, which will supply 5% of the country’s electricity demands. (compared to official data from 2006 and assuming I got my maths right)

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Written by yishaym

March 18, 2008 at 1:01 pm

The Cute Cat Theory

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Ethan Zuckerman’s notes from his talk at ETech. Including pictures of cats, youtube freedom of speech virals, government monitoring googlemap mashups, and a lot of stuff to think about – whether you’re a political activists, technological startupist, or just want LOLCats to rul da wrrld.

Read it. save it. spread the word.

(also on the WorldChanging blog)

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Amen to that

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What is it with chefs and manifesto these days? Seriously. We get it. You don’t just randomly put stuff on plates. You’ve got a grand idea. But you know what? Sometimes all we care about is if your grand idea tasted any good. Because if it isn’t, then it’s just a big pile of crap.

Chez Pim – “L’Esguard: quite possibly the worst meal of my life”

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Written by yishaym

March 10, 2008 at 2:24 am

Posted in food

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