Archive for April, 2007

Thanks to Richard (once known as Dick) for pointing out this excellent study/work avoidance site — “The Nietzsche Family Circus pairs a randomized Family Circus cartoon with a randomized Friedrich Nietzsche quote.”



Nietzsche Family Circus sample

Art is not merely an imitation of the reality of nature, but in truth a metaphysical supplement to the reality of nature, placed alongside thereof for its conquest.

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Mark’s thesis looks worth reading (see brief bit below) and his bibliography is very nice.

Methods

For my thesis, I took four articles and compared them; two from EB and two from Wikipedia. With the help of my committee, I choose “Communism” and “Dwight D. Eisenhower”. Since I wanted to compare similar things, I used the online version of the EB articles. After downloading the articles, I removed any auxiliary text that was not part of the article and compared the EB article to the WP article. I wanted to see what differences there were between EB and WP at the basic building block levels. Once I had the articles cleaned up, I ran a number of readability tests, word count tests and grammatical comparisons. Readability tests count things like the number of words in sentences and syllables per word to get an idea of the grade level needed to read the text. I also compared numbers of nouns and verbs in each article and noun and verb phrases. I wanted to see if either encyclopedia had a more nominal (definitional) or verbal (function) nature to the language. I was also interested in how EB and WP constructed statements of facts and values. I thought in these areas I may find significant differences.

Results

After comparing EB and WP with these measures, I really found no significant difference. The readability scores were less than a grade level apart. The numbers of nouns and verbs were roughly the same and the articles had similar statements of facts and values. Now, I would like to say this shows the collective system of WP writes in the same way as the expert-driven EB but looking at so few articles my results are a bit tainted. For these particular articles, I can say the collective writes in a similar way as the EB authors an editors.

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Well you sure don’t look human, said the man.
But that doesn’t make me a fluid, twittered the ape.
- Russell Edson in “Ape and Coffee”

I’ve been twittering for a while now. At first, I limited my twitter friends to only a couple. Then Twitter wasn’t well integrated into Adium or much else. I didn’t want to spend my time going to one more social site except for notes from actual friends (okay, John Edwards too but then he asked first and he is a pretty good twitterer unlike Obama whose first tweet Fred disses).

Then SXSW happened. Twitter had a major rollout/PR push there. I wasn’t there but a lot of folks there started twittering me and friending me and twitter made more sense.

Even more useful was Fred’s article “The 12 Minute Definitive Guide to Twitter.” There I discovered Twitterific which links your tweets to Adium and is itself a very nice constantly updating collector of tweets.

Finally Twitter was easy and useful. If you manage your friend list.

And if you want yet another news flow, you can make a twittering news site like CNet your friend.

Since then new twitter friend and musician Robbie Link put me onto the insanely simple to use “post it to twitter” add-on to the Firefox search box. This makes posting a tweet as simple as typing in the search box once that feature is selected. The downside is that it doesn’t collect tweets — you go to your Twitter home page for that — and it doesn’t update your Instant Messenger status. So I’m sticking with Twitterific for most of my tweeting.

Jason Griffy tweets that Google’s free Teletwitter (Windoz only) looks a lot like Twitterific (Mac only).

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Bryant's Mandala of Caps

Today, I kept running into people I hadn’t seen in years.

At the BarCampSignal, Ted Johnson who was in an English department scramble rock band appropriately named Scrapyard is now doing space music and ambient electronica as Studio 713, Groove Stream Attractor and National Holographic (all in the same Flash interface). Pretty different stuff from the Rolling Stones and blues covers of Scrapyard.

Mark Hosler of Negativland gave a concert in tails. Mark was in tails not the concert that was in the Cats Cradle (photo by Steve B). Mark directed two other Negativlanders with a broken car antenna as they played on self-constructed instruments. Later Mark gave a talk at BarCampSignal. The Negs are still outLandish and fresh and funny and challenging.

Artist Bryant Holsenbeck
has been working with found materials for some years now. For a while, way way back when she reminds me, she worked in baskets which lead to hats and jewelry. Now she’s been doing larger projects — mostly installations — pictures of which can be seen online. I’m really impressed by her River of Caps projects and the Bottle Cap Mandalas.

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May 13 – 15 Dublin, Ohio to visit and give a talk at OCLC
May 17 – 18 Asheville, North Carolina to keynote the UNC Asheville workshop on digital preservation
May 20 – 22 Orlando, Florida on a secret mission to be revealed later
May 23 – 26 East Lansing, Michigan for the Odyssey of the Mind World Competitions

If you are in these areas and would like to have a cup of coffee and chat, leave me a comment here.

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According to the latest Wired:

Expired Tired Wired
Working at Home Working in Starbucks Coworking

Brian Russell alerts us to a Coworking meeting in Carrboro:

Do you work at home? Are you a telecommuter? Run a business from your home office? The Town of Carrboro wants to know how it can help you. On May 8 at 10 am in Room 100 of the Carrboro Town Hall the Economic Development Department of the Town of Carrboro will be conducting a public forum to discuss this
topic.

If you know other people that work at home who might be interested in participating in the conversation, please invite them.

If you can’t make it let me know and we’ll work on a second event.

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According to the latests issue Wired Magazine: The Blooker Prize is Wired, the Booker Prize is Tired, and the Pulitzer Prize is Expired.

Expired Tired Wired
Pulitzer Booker Blooker

Note: I am the Chair of Judges for this year’s Lulu Blooker Prize.

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Jennifer Jenkins
Who: Jennifer Jenkins of Duke Law‘s Center for the Study of the Public Domain
When: 12 noon – 1:00 p.m., Wednesday, May 9, 2007
Where: 2nd Floor Conference Rooms, Davis Library
Sponsor: UNC-CH Scholarly Communication Working Group

What: At the May brown-bag lunch meeting Jennifer Jenkins will discuss the work of the “Arts Project” at Duke’s Center for the Study of the Public Domain. This project analyzes the effects of intellectual property on cultural production and, among other things, produced Bound By Law — a comic book about copyright and creativity. She will also talk about Creative Commons and how its licenses facilitate creativity and the free availability of cultural materials. Jenkins is the director of the Center for the Study of the Public Domain and a lecturer at Duke Law School where she teaches seminars on copyright law.

For more information on the Center (here).

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Merle Fest

I won two day passes to Merle Fest! The tix are good on any day of the Fest. But as it turns out, I can’t get out of town to use them.

If you are interested in having these tix — and using them, let me know. They go to the first person who responds.

UPDATE: The tix are taken! I trust Frank will have a great weekend.

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Some years back, I helped a talented undergrad create and teach a course on the “Post Modern Comic.” The course was a success largely because of the friendly and smart tech support provided by Jamie Bishop. I talked a little with Jamie and learned about his various interests — German, science fiction, digital illustration, an active and imaginative life. I was delighted to hear from him that both he and his wife had gotten jobs in Blacksburg, VA.

Then last week Jamie was shot down in the classroom.

Some of his friends alert us of a Support Fund in his name:

Dear Friends,

Jamie Bishop was our friend and colleague. He died tragically on Monday, April 16th while teaching German at Virginia Tech. He leaves behind a grieving family that faces financial challenges as they mourn. Many of you have offered support and condolences to his widow, Stefanie Hofer. We are grateful for this outpouring and in response we, his colleagues and friends, have created the “Bishop-Hofer Support Fund” to offer you a way to support Steffi and her family at this difficult time.

To make contribution, please make out a check to:

The Bishop-Hofer Support Fund

And send it to:
The Bishop-Hofer Support Fund
c/o Wachovia Bank
Blacksburg Financial Center
200 North Main Street VA7044
Blacksburg, VA 24060

Please feel free to pass this information to anyone you believe is interested in helping with this effort.

Sincerely,
Robert Stephens
Heather Gumbert
Karl Larson
Greta Kroeker
Grace Kao

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The national Free Culture movement HQ will be offering Free Software and free hosting to local chapters.

The software chosen for blogs? ibiblio’s own Lycuem!

Congratulations to JJB, Fred and Lyceum contributors.

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Writing as “DFMI (Dispatches From the Music Industry) correspondent” in Portfolio.com’s Tech Observer, Roger McGuinn has some ideas about how to connect the OLPC to the Net. He begins with our abortive attempt to place the Folk Den songs on the OLPC and quickly moves to solar panel powered solutions.

Greg deK
mentioned using “Internet in a Box” [not the 1995 Spry/O'Reilly solution, but a big ole server with a fair sized disk] to supply a static version of say Wikipedia, MIT Courseware and the like in a conversation I had with him last week.

I think that the Air Jaldi wireless mesh being used in Dharamsala by the Tibetans can be a pretty good answer for a lot of places.

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Howard Rheingold in RomeBeverly McIver

Howard Rheingold alerts us to his upcoming appearance on NPR’s Day to Day tomorow (Thursday April 26, locally on WUNC at 3 pm – 4 pm).

UPDATE: Howard appeared on Day to Day’s Xeni Tech segment, “Two Sides Take Up Murder Case Online” (here).


Tyndall Galleries
alerts us to the upcoming interview of artist Beverly McIver on Dick Gordon’s The Show Story tomorrow (Thursday April 26, locally on WUNC at 1 pm and 8 pm EST).

UPDATE: Beverly McIver’s feature on The Story “Painting Faces” (here).

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Michael Czeiszperger’s photograph on the front of the Chapel Hill News explains what I like about the South. We don’t have snow instead we have floating drifting flower petals.

More of Michael’s photographs are on display at the Open Eye Cafe in Carrboro through the end of April and at his Learning to See website.

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Dan Avery and Archive-IT
Joey has the talk by Dan Avery and Molly Bragg of Internet Archive up at the ibiblio Speakers site. Molly talks about the Archive-It subscription service. And Dan tells us why “The Web is a Mess!.” He explains the Archive-It crawler and how he learned to stop worrying and love the web.

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Carolyn asks nicely:

Do you blog? If yes, then please consider participating in an online survey from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. The study, Blogger Perceptions on Digital Preservation, is being conducted under the guidance of the Real Paul Jones . The study team is interested in hearing from all bloggers on their perceptions on digital preservation in relation to their own blogging activities, as well as the blogosphere in general. To hear more about this survey and to take it, go here:
http://www.ils.unc.edu/~hcarolyn/blogsurvey/.

From there, you can link out to the web-based survey. The survey will be available from April 25 through May 23, 2007. We believe blogs are valuable records of the human experience. Help to contribute to continued access to these important records by participating in our study. The survey should take between twenty to thirty minutes to complete.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Carolyn Hank, the study Principle [sic] Investigator, at hcarolyn AT email.unc.edu. Thanks!

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Bora who was one of the main organizing forces (along with Anton and Brian) of the Science Blogging Conference in January, saw a great job being offered at the Public Library of Science. This one for PLoS ONE Online Community Manager.

He then blogged about how he would like to have that job but that he needed to talk with his family.

His readers and other friends encouraged him by commenting on the blog post.

Amongst the comments was this:

So should we take this blog post as a formal application?

Chris Surridge, Managing Editor, PLoS ONE

Posted by: Chris Surridge | April 21, 2007 04:19 PM

To which Bora replied:

Yes, why not. Check your e-mailbox.

Posted by: coturnix | April 21, 2007 04:36 PM

The fun and the job hunts continues and Bora has posted an update in which he asks those who know him and read his blog to post their recommendations in his comments.

So friends and readers of Blog Around the Clock, run on over and comment.

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Doc Searls blogs: Maybe I can get one to blog for me. Buy a used robot.

What Doc needs is Bloggy!

Bloggy circa March 2005

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OCLC logo
I’ll be traveling to Dublin —- Ohio —- in mid-May to visit the folks at OCLC (which stands for OCLC) and talk about ibiblio and our projects here. I’m building my talk on my wiki so that folks at OCLC can comment (in Discussion) and/or add to and/or even modify the talk.

You’re welcome to do the same.

I don’t ever talk completely from the presentation materials but they do indicate the interest areas and give access to much more additional data and texts for later reading for folks who are interested.

Folks who feel more comfortable leaving comments on a blog are welcome to to so here.

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A good bit of the Security and Liberty Forum is now online (thanks Joey) on the ibiblio Speakers page. Included are the panel of all the participants answering questions from the audience, Gene Spafford (Fragment) – Government surveillance, Annie Anton – Transparency in Privacy Statements & Practices and Bruce Schneier – The Future of Privacy.

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