Information Architecture

Jimmy Wales Interview on Open Licenses

Ellyssa Kroski, who writes at iLibrarian, also teaches a class at San Jose State University on the Open Movement and Libraries (Fall of 2008). As part of the class shes has done interviews with such notable figures as Stephen Downes of the National Research Council in Canada, and Nicole Engard of LibLime. Her guest a couple weeks ago was Jimmy Wales. You can hear the full 10 minutes interview with Jimmy Wales here.

Semantic Dementia

Karen Coyle: "Semantic dementia" is a term for something many of us of advanced age experience: forgetting words we once knew. It brings to my mind, however, the kind of demented semantics that we often encounter in standards in our field, and the use of or creation of words that obscure the meaning of the standard. DCAM defines a set of metadata types that can help us communicate to each other about our metadata. It should simplify crosswalking of metadata sets, and make standards more understandable across communities. Unfortunately, it has not done so, at least in part, because of some rather demented semantics.

LISTen: The LISNews.org Podcast -- Episode #36

This week's episode features an interview with new media strategist Tommy Vallier talking about Google Chrome, an installment of Tech for Techies discussing how to build a telephone bridge for recording interviews, and a commentary.

Related links:
Website of Tommy Vallier
Twitter stream of Tommy Vallier
Google Chrome

18:55 minutes (8 MB)
mp3
[audio-player]

Lessons Learned After Twitter Blackout

Recently two librarians had their accounts torched by Twitter due to coming up in an anti-spam sweep. Their accounts were considered to have been false positives and it took time for access to be restored. Two librarians in particular, Connie Crosby and Patricia Anderson, were affected.

As an aid to others, Anderson has posted a lessons learned review. In light of the recent Gmail outage some lessons are worth considering in other contexts.

New Windows Vista Security Hole

The Dvorak Uncensored blog points the way to a story about a vulnerability discussed at Black Hat. It appears that through the use of low-level, web-browsing related technologies control can be seized of Windows Vista computers notwithstanding new security protocols found in Vista. The aspect that is even more disturbing is how the vulnerability is not limited to Windows Vista alone but could be utilized against other platforms.

For libraries with public-access computing that can access the Internet, this may force some thinking about potential vulnerabilities.

Cuil: A New Search Engine Launches

While it may seem odd to note today compared to perhaps 1996 or 1997, a new search engine launched today. Cuil is a search engine focusing more on analyzing text relevance over ranking pages as might Google. Reactions seen on Twitter today were mixed such as those heard from Chad Haefele, Karin Dalziel, and Engadget's soon to be Editor-at-Large Ryan Block.

CNET's Rafe Needleman wrote at his WebWare site about the launch and how it was not the best. Needleman's post showed screenshots of strange results returned by Cuil. Dalziel also linked to a screenshot she posted on Flickr.

Have you tried Cuil today? What is your reaction to the launch of this new search engine?

'Public' online spaces don't carry speech, rights

Rant all you want in a public park. A police officer generally won't eject you for your remarks alone, however unpopular or provocative.

Say it on the Internet, and you'll find that free speech and other constitutional rights are anything but guaranteed.

Companies in charge of seemingly public spaces online wipe out content that's controversial but otherwise legal. Service providers write their own rules for users worldwide and set foreign policy when they cooperate with regimes like China. They serve as prosecutor, judge and jury in handling disputes behind closed doors.

Full article here.

The Web Time Forgot

On a fog-drizzled Monday afternoon, this fading medieval city feels like a forgotten place. Apart from the obligatory Gothic cathedral, there is not much to see here except for a tiny storefront museum called the Mundaneum, tucked down a narrow street in the northeast corner of town. It feels like a fittingly secluded home for the legacy of one of technology’s lost pioneers: Paul Otlet.

In 1934, Otlet sketched out plans for a global network of computers (or “electric telescopes,” as he called them) that would allow people to search and browse through millions of interlinked documents, images, audio and video files. He described how people would use the devices to send messages to one another, share files and even congregate in online social networks. He called the whole thing a “réseau,” which might be translated as “network” — or arguably, “web.”

Full story here.

Doing Away With Visual Real Estate

Most of us deal with a computer every single day. Some of us enjoy the experience more than others but we all share one common need.

Visual real estate.

In other words, we have one or more monitors and using those we can look at a given number of things. After a certain number, depending on your setup, you hit a point of diminishing returns. In other words, if you open too many windows, you'll clutter up your screen(s) to the point that they're unreadable.

Well, this could fix that. It could also have fascinating implications for the storage and retrieval of data. Think of it as microfilm 2.0.

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