Year: 2013

  • Automatically Familiar

    Automatically Familiar

    More from the ever weirder frontier of automated humanity. The Atlantic has a fascinating piece on how the telemarketing industry has evolved to marry call scripts and recorded snippets of smooth-talking sales people to create what the author calls, “cyborg telemarketing” The company that made the UI above is called Avatar Technologies. They turn the telemarketer’s…

  • Robots copy Nature

    As soon as Google announced it was acquiring the scary mechanical cheetah company Boston Dynamics, twitter exploded into a series of snarky comments about self-aware robots from a company that knows everything about you chasing after you to watch more YouTube. Say what you will, Boston Dynamic is a fascinating company. I’ve marveled at BD’s…

  • Make it So

    A disarmingly charming story of a young lady and her adventures with a Captain Picard action figure comes with a nice message on the power of communities. Found on

  • Visualizing the Uninsured

    Another data map for you. This one by the New York Times based on the most recent census data shows the percent in each region that have either public or private insurance or are uninsured at all. Be sure to allow your browser to read your location and you’ll shortcut to your local region.

  • See and Say in the San Francisco Bay

    I’ve written about Eric Fischer’s work before (Digital Cartography, Digital Contrails). His work takes massive amounts of data and plots them geo-spatially to create beautiful maps. His latest piece shows Twitter and Flickr around the San Francisco Bay. Red dots are locations of Flickr pictures. Blue dots are locations of Twitter tweets. White dots are…

  • Blogs as Personal Aggregators

    Om blogged some thoughts after 12 years of blogging and came to the conclusion that one’s blog is one’s digital home. It is not only where you start new conversations, it should also be where you aggregate and archive the fruits of conversations you participate in out on various social web platforms. And while I…

  • The Importance of Being Human

    The New York Times has a front page story about the All-Japan Phone-Answering Competition. In this day of automated voice mail trees and customer service forms, Japan still stresses the importance of having a human answer the phone  promptly and efficiently. What is ironic is that, to the Western ear, the high-pitched tones and honorifics used…

  • Lucid Stead

    Beautiful installation on an old homestead in Joshua Tree. Check out the video of the how & why.

  • Reach out and touch someone on Instagram Direct

    Reach out and touch someone on Instagram Direct

    One line stood out on today’s announcement about Instagram Direct. Photos and videos that you receive from people you follow will appear immediately. If someone you’re not following sends you a photo or video on Instagram, it will go to your requests so you can decide if you want to view it. This is an…