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The Emergence of Niceness | Synthesis

The Emergence of Niceness | Synthesis | e-Xploration | Scoop.it

"“People in our model do not behave irrationally,” explains Grund, but while the “homo economicus” optimizes its utility independently, the “homo socialis” puts himself or herself into the shoes of others to consider their interests as well.” Helbing adds: “This establishes something like “networked minds”. Everyone’s decisions depend on the preferences of others.” This becomes even more important in our networked world."


Via Howard Rheingold
luiy's insight:

A participatory kind of economy


How will this change our economy? Today, many customers doubt that they get the best service by people who are driven by their own profits and bonuses. “Our theory predicts that the level of other-regarding preferences is distributed broadly, from selfish to altruistic. Academic education in economics has largely promoted the selfish type. Perhaps, our economic thinking needs to fundamentally change, and our economy should be run by different kinds of people,” suggests Grund. “The true capitalist has other-regarding preferences,” adds Helbing, “as the “homo socialis” earns much more payoff.” This is, because the “homo socialis” manages to overcome the downwards spiral that tends to drive the “homo economicus” towards tragedies of the commons. The breakdown of trust and cooperation in the financial markets back in 2008 might be a good example.

 

“Social media will promote a new kind of participatory economy, in which competition goes hand in hand with cooperation,” believes Helbing. Indeed, the digital economy’s paradigm of the “prosumer” states that the Internet, social platforms, 3D printers and other developments will enable the co-producing consumer. “It will be hard to tell who is consumer and who is producer”, says Christian Waloszek. “You might be both at the same time, and this creates a much more cooperative perspective.”

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Howard Rheingold's curator insight, April 6, 2013 4:28 AM

The woman in the picture is the late Elinor Ostrom, whose research is cited, but who did not contribute to the evolutionary modeling research that provides evidence for mechanisms whereby cooperative behavior can spread in socieities dominated by selfishness. Sociality is the key -- pewople who get to know each other can be stimulated by ordinarily disadvantaged cooperative actors into mutual cooperation, which then becomes self-reinforcing through mutual payoffs. The social web is certainly a hotbed of ill-will. It is also an environment in which those who are inclined to cooperate -- people with diseases or caregivers, gamers, makers, educators, and just friendly, civil people -- can find each other and cluster. It is that clustering that promotes payoffs and spreads cooperation, and which online social networks can promote.

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The 4 Vs of Big Data

The 4 Vs of Big Data | e-Xploration | Scoop.it

Big Data is the Gold Rush of the 21st Century where discovering nuggets of actionable insights is transforming the way we work, live, & play.  Big Data Is Changing the Whole Equation for Business and organizations that fail to define Big Data Leadership will fall behind, far behind.  Organizations that hope to remain competitive in today’s market will include a strategy that implements Big Data tools along with the training and development of Data Scientists and Big Data Artists.


Via blogbrevity
luiy's insight:
Big Data Virtualization Processing unstructured, semi-structured, and structured data can be accomplished with open-source tools such as Hadoop, MongoDB, Node.JS, with multiple programming languages including Java and Python. Many of these Big Data Tools can be installed and configured within a few minutes. We can also leverage Cloud Computing for processing Big Data. Cost-effective processing of Graph Data for Social Network Analytics can be accomplished with GraphChi. My friend and colleague, Brad Cox, created an easy to use plugin to accelerate graph data processing. There are a plethora of tools and resources out there. Help others and share your favorites here. Big Data Visualization Getting the right information to the right person at the right time in the right way is a big deal. Data Visualizations should not be cryptic like a puzzle, but easy to understand. This is not a simple task and is the reason why we need more Big Data Artists in the world. My friend Angela Dunn has inspiring Data Visualization stories at Data is Beautiful. Data Visualization Tools Great artists experiment with a variety of material and tools to create their masterpieces. The modern day Big Data Artist can experiment with these tools to create their next masterpiece.
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Five Reasons Why I Play World of Warcraft...And Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid of the Taboo

Five Reasons Why I Play World of Warcraft...And Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid of the Taboo | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
I've never been much of a video gamer. I preferred reading books to almost everything else, and in more recent years, very fond of reading blogs and articles online. Imagine my surprise to realize ...

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
luiy's insight:
o here’s my five reasons why I play World of Warcraft. Reason #1: The story and lore is amazing. WoW has a gigantic universe. It started with Warcraft I-III, a real-time strategy game, and the massive multiplayer online role-playing game World of Warcraft came from the same universe and storyline. There is a main storyline, but then each race has its own storylines, some classes have their own storylines, each faction and group of people has its own storyline to delve into, and it’s just mind-blowing, and incredibly extensive. I’ve made an effort to read as much of the lore and storyline as I possibly can, and I still haven’t even scratched the surface. I’ve read a few of the books, and the writers that write the WoW books tend to be decent writers and do justice to the storylines. Even if you never wanted to play the game, the books are good for anyone who enjoys reading the fantasy genre. Reason #2: The music appeals to my music-nerd side. I played in concert band/wind ensemble from 5th grade all the way until my senior year of college. If I had more time, I probably still would play in the community band in my town. The music in WoW…I would have LOVED to play it in wind ensemble or concert band at any point in my life. Most of it doesn’t have any words, which makes it excellent to just listen to if I need to focus, or even just to fall asleep to at night. I’ve also snagged the Diablo III soundtrack (also from Blizzard Entertainment) and I actually have a Blizzard Entertainment playlist on my iPhone. It comes in handy. I tend to keep the music turned up above everything else when I’m playing. Most recently, the newest raid that came out has amazing music. I don’t mind wiping ten times in one night if I can keep listening to the music in the raid. Reason #3: It’s a social game, you can meet people from all over. I also happen to have the best guild of all time. It took about six months before we landed in the right guild. The original guild I joined when I started playing had some issues with the guild leader, and everyone quit playing except for Josh and I. We decided to roll on a role-playing server (Wyrmrest Accord) on a whim with our friend Ryan, creating three gnomes named Stabbystabz (a gnome subtlety rogue), Minnieheals (gnome discipline priest) and Tinyjewels (gnome frost mage).
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Terheck's curator insight, April 5, 2013 12:46 PM

Not afraid at all. Personally, I play Starcraft II & Diablo III, as soon as I have time...

Just for FUN ! (Geek inside ;-)

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Anthropology Blogosphere 2013-Ecology of Online Anthropology | Anthropology Report

Anthropology Blogosphere 2013-Ecology of Online Anthropology | Anthropology Report | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Towards an ecology of online anthropology in 2013, the growing anthropology blogosphere and ways anthropologists go online, using social media and journalism.

Via Andrea Naranjo
luiy's insight:
With the news from the American Anthropological Association that they are going for global scholarly exchange, growing the membership, getting applied anthropology into the organization, and greater visibility, let’s hope they support the emerging anthropology blogosphere. Anthropology Group Blogs The influence of Savage Minds as one of the first, longest-running, and still most-heavily-visited anthropology blogs has set a standard for developments in the anthropology blogosphere (unfortunately the official Savage Minds site is down). Other prominent examples of long-running anthropology group blogs with rotating personnel include Somatosphere for high-quality medical anthropology, technology, and much more. anthropologyworks with a very reliable Monday Anthropology-in-the-Media update. Ethnography.com, a long-running group effort. Zero Anthropology for critical anthropology. Anthropology.net occupying a critical piece of anthropology-online real estate. Recycled Minds is a group blog with regular and guest contributors. These anthropology group blogs are great places to look for guest blogging opportunities, to put work online without plunging in for a full-fledged online presence. Self-Hosted Anthropology Blogs Although getting a webhost and theme design is standard for the blog industry, there are relatively few of these for anthropology bloggers, perhaps because of the prevalence of the anthropology group blogs. John Hawks Weblog is a quite incredible undertaking in this respect, with loads of information and very frequent updates. Kristina Kilgrove’s Powered by Osteons is a similar pioneering effort with consistently superior content. The individual webhost, wordpress.org framework, and theme design are also what I chose for this blog and Living Anthropologically. This method involves greater upfront costs and some technical expertise, but can offer greater control over content and presentation. Other blogs in this category include Struggle Forever! by Jeremy Trombley and How to be an Anthropologist by Angela VandenBroek.
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The Rise of Interactive Data Visualization

The Rise of Interactive Data Visualization | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
The visualization below highlights something only recently possible on the web: a dynamic, interactive canvas. Titled "Disaster Strikes: A World In Sight", it visualizes a century of floods, fires, droughts, and earthquakes around the globe.

Via Siarhei Mardovich
luiy's insight:
Encoding State with a Stateless Protocol

One important point in such visualizations is that state be encoded in the browser URL. When you find something interesting, for example that 1996 was a bad year for bacterial outbreaks, you should be able to share it. Updating the base URL is not wise, as it would require a painful reload of the page for each interaction. The recommended approach is using a hashbang fragment (but be careful), which can be detected to set the visualization to the proper state.

The Disaster Strikes visualization does not surface state yet, but I expect with more time it would have been implemented, and we make extensive use of this with our internal dashboards.

Progress, In Sight

The field of interactive visualization is still nascent, but this weekend’s event was testimony that static visualizations are likely to go the way of printed books. Though “interactive” was just one of the four award categories, every single team I witnessed on Sunday showed what would be considered an interactive, dynamic visualization.

Some final notes about the competition: The world disaster data, as well as other data sets that were eligible for use at the hackathon, are available at this special InfoChimps page. . One specific winner can be seen here, and the full set of winners can be seen at the Data Insights home..

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Invitation : Crowdsourcing an end to violence against women and girls

Invitation : Crowdsourcing an end to violence against women and girls | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
luiy's insight:

Crowdsourcing platforms also have the potential to allow for direct interaction between victims and competent authorities, allowing for timely and effective resolutions. Such applications could also be used by law enforcement agencies to monitor cases and better ensure the public safety of women.

The United Nations theme for International Women’s Day 2013 is A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women.

 

I decided to act by calling on all organizations, NGOs, and any other interested individuals to create a crowdsourcing platform to track violence against women in the region.

 

If you would like to get involved or can help finance this endeavour, contact me@barboragalvankova.

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What Socialbots Tell Us about Social Media

What Socialbots Tell Us about Social Media | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
The last tweet you got may have been from a robot. A socialbot, to be exact. Like some neo-Asimovian science fiction story, networks of socialbots are beginning to spread across social media, likin...
luiy's insight:

In a similar manner, it is these types – rather than specific individuals – that socialbots imitate. For example, James Titus, the winner of the 2011 Socialbot Challenge, played the role of innocent and charming Twitter newbie. He has a blog about “kitteh fashun” and he tweets innocuous questions like “Three places you’d like to go?” and “What experience has changed your outlook on life?” In this way, he was not unlike Joseph Weizenbaum’s famous ELIZA program: he provides a non-threatening sounding board. This is perfect for a form of media that reduces emotional exchanges to quantities like “like” and “retweet.”

 

Less innocent but no less based in stereotype, consider the practice of using a picture of a “hot girl” for the profile image of a socialbot, which is a recommended move in the socialbot literature. The pattern here is simple, but effective: straight men are more likely to friend or follow a hot girl. As one socialbot white paper puts it, socialbot engineers don’t even need to figure out who’s hot: they can just use pre-rated pictures from Hotornot.com, a site famous for allowing users to rate profile pictures on a scale of 1 to 10. Again, this emergent pattern can feed the socialbot machine.

 

While these patterns are somewhat crude, I argue that socialbot engineering will get more complex. We’re already seeing the development of techniques like Social Network Analysis to produce the patterns that such socialbots required to fool us online. One such pattern is the triadic closure principle, in which if I’m a friend of you, you’re more likely to become a friend of one of my friends, thus closing the triangle. This technique was used to great effect by a research team from the University of British Columbia, who were able to gather 250GB of personal data from Facebook by using automated socialbots.

 

We’re only at the beginning of big data analysis, and thus, I would argue, we’re only at the beginning of socialbot research.

But for now, perhaps there’s a lesson to be gleaned from this new field: as complex as our interactions are in social media, there’s something fundamentally disturbing about the ease with which ‘bots are able to gain our friendship. And of course, now we have to wonder what exactly they’ll do with our friendship. I will leave that for another post.

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Into Big Data & the Manipulation of ? A good read "The Relevance of Algorithms"

Into Big Data & the Manipulation of ? A good read "The Relevance of Algorithms" | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
I'm really excited to share my new essay, "The Relevance of Algorithms," with those of you who are interested in such things. It's been a treat to get to think through the issues surrounding algori...

Via Gary Hayes
luiy's insight:

What we need is an interrogation of algorithms as a key feature of our information ecosystem (Anderson 2011), and of the cultural forms emerging in their shadows (Striphas 2010), with a close attention to where and in what ways the introduction of algorithms into human knowledge practices may have political ramifications. This essay is a conceptual map to do just that. I will highlight six dimensions of public relevance algorithms that have political valence:

1. Patterns of inclusion: the choices behind what makes it into an index in the first place, what is excluded, and how data is made algorithm ready

2. Cycles of anticipation: the implications of algorithm providers’ attempts to thoroughly know and predict their users, and how the conclusions they draw can matter

3. The evaluation of relevance: the criteria by which algorithms determine what is relevant, how those criteria are obscured from us, and how they enact political choices about appropriate and legitimate knowledge

4. The promise of algorithmic objectivity: the way the technical character of the algorithm is positioned as an assurance of impartiality, and how that claim is maintained in the face of controversy

5. Entanglement with practice: how users reshape their practices to suit the algorithms they depend on, and how they can turn algorithms into terrains for political contest, sometimes even to interrogate the politics of the algorithm itself

6. The production of calculated publics: how the algorithmic presentation of publics back to themselves shape a public’s sense of itself, and who is best positioned to benefit from that knowledge.

Considering how fast these technologies and the uses to which they are put are changing, this list must be taken as provisional, not exhaustive. But as I see it, these are the most important lines of inquiry into understanding algorithms as emerging tools of public knowledge and discourse.

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Gary Hayes's curator insight, April 3, 2013 8:48 AM

Algorithms need not be software: in the broadest sense, they are encoded procedures for transforming input data into a desired output, based on specified calculations. The procedures name both a problem and the steps by which it should be solved. Instructions for navigation may be considered an algorithm, or the mathematical formulas required to predict the movement of a celestial body across the sky. “Algorithms do things, and their syntax embodies a command structure to enable this to happen” (Goffey 2008, 17). We might think of computers, then, fundamentally as algorithm machines — designed to store and read data, apply mathematical procedures to it in a controlled fashion, and offer new information as the output.

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What is Digital Humanities? by Brian Lennon

What is Digital Humanities? by Brian Lennon | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Personal academic home page

Via Pierre Levy
luiy's insight:

Research technicians of all kinds, bound as they are to a domain of constant activity, have too little time (and often little desire) to address such questions. So people turn elsewhere — if often incoherently, inarticulately, and angrily, shooting first and aiming later. But that itself is one reason, at least, for the fact that when you look under the hood, so to speak, you see that what one might call the traditional literary humanities appears very much alive. I hope you have read this essay by James English in The Chronicle of Higher Education, as well as Christopher Newfield’s work on how the humanities appear to subsidize the sciences in some public research universities. Reality is startlingly counter-intuitive.

 

So you needn’t concern yourself with “digital humanities”: it can’t save you, it isn’t the key to anything, and you’ll be no worse off for ignoring it if that is your wish.

 

On the other hand, you must always be doing “digital humanities.” And by that I mean two things. First, that you should take the acquisition of new technical skills — and not only those associated with computing, but all kinds of new technical skills — as just as vital to your intellectual growth as immersion in the history of ideas. Second, that you ought not to delegate either those skills, or the engagement with the historical present that they represent, to a new group of specialists. That, in my opinion, was the mistake that literary humanists made in the invention of “creative writing,” leaving the intimate immersion in form to others while they focused exclusively on the so-called “content” of their work.

 

In some ways it is true that during the last twenty years, the means of intellectual production have been disrupted more rapidly and continuously than before, and that the popularization of that document distribution and retrieval system we call the World Wide Web has come to threaten the traditional control of the bureaucratic intellectual class over archives and other repositories of data. To over-invest in the “digital humanities” as such is to over-invest in a segregation permitting that intellectual class to avoid thinking too deeply about such change, by hiring others to manage it on their behalf. But such arrangements are not victories for anyone. Rather, they are sources of a kind of tectonic tension, and eventually something breaks.

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Pierre Levy's curator insight, April 2, 2013 5:57 PM

Like “creative nonfiction,” “digital humanities” is a deliberately, rather than accidentally presentist name for a set of practices that are not new at all. Literary humanist involvement with computing is coterminous with the history of computing itself, beginning with research on machine translation immediately after the Second World War and in computer-assisted or computer-enhanced philological activity going back to the 1950s.

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The Role of Learning Analytics in Improving Teaching and Learning - George Siemens

Interest in big data, data mining, and analytics is strong and growing in business and government. Recent reports by McKinsey, HBR, and Deloitte indicate tha...

Via Ana Cristina Pratas, juandoming
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Ana Cristina Pratas's curator insight, April 2, 2013 10:38 AM

With thanks to John Mak @suifuijohnmak

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Extracting Diurnal Patterns of Real World Activity from Social Media

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Abstract


In this study, we develop methods to identify verbal expressions in social media streams that refer to real-world activities. Using aggregate daily patterns of Foursquare checkins, our methods extract similar patterns from Twitter, extending the amount of available content while preserving high relevance. We devise and test several methods to extract such content, using timeseries and semantic similarity. Evaluating on key activity categories available from Foursquare (coffee, food, shopping and nightlife), we show that our extraction methods are able to capture equivalent patterns in Twitter. By examining rudimentary categories of activity such as nightlife, food or shopping we peek at the fundamental rhythm of human behavior and observe when it is disrupted. We use data compiled during the abnormal conditions in New York City throughout Hurricane Sandy to examine the outcome of our methods.

 

 

Our contributions are therefore:


1. Methods for extracting information from Twitter that corresponds with real-world activities such as eating, shopping, and others (sections 4, 5).


2. A method of modeling differences of activity time-series that can help reason about behavioral patterns and intended use of social media platforms (Section 6.1).


3. A study of how these techniques can help expose irregular activities in social media data, in a case study of Hurricane

 

 

Conclusions

 

Our methods are based on token-level analysis of the Twitter posts text. Future work could model the language in a post more carefully, for instance by generalizing our methods to use Bigrams, Trigrams, etc. and employ NLP tools like part of speech tagging to perform deeper analysis of language constructs. For example, examining the tense used in tweets before and after lunch time could shed light on user’s intent. In respect to time-series analysis, future work could examine the ”unfolded”, non-periodic signals and use multiple indicators for better prediction. Our approach focused on diurnal pattern and thus considered only predefined periods of in-phase signals. To that end, a natural extension could further explore the frequency space, allowing for some phase shift between time-series and drift over time.

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Teaching Astronomy or Geography within the context of Data Science


Via Pierre Levy
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How Big Data is being used to record the future | memeburn

How Big Data is being used to record the future | memeburn | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
luiy's insight:

As Eric Horvitz of Microsoft Research and Kira Radinsky of the Technion-Israel show us in Mining the Web to Predict Future Events — it’s possible to make predictions ranging from flu outbreaks, to finances and even critical information regarding national security. The above example shows us how a cholera outbreak in Angola was predicted after droughts, followed by storms, were recorded and analysed. These events are, among others, the conditions necessary for a possible cholera outbreak. The probability of a cholera epidemic is therefore great and can be predicted and hopefully prevented.

“Similar tests involving forecasts of disease, violence, and a significant numbers of deaths saw the system’s warnings correct between 70 to 90 percent of the time.” These examples prove to be most applicable when it comes to the practicing of analyzing big data for predictive purposes. Big Data analysis can be applied to anything really. It is defined by the means of mining and processing data. Not the ends which is where predictive sciences come in.

 

Big Data analysis differs mostly from other predictive sciences in the tools being used and the broad areas in which it can be applied. For example software analysis is being used by Microsoft and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology to mine “22 years of archives of The New York Times and about 90 other web resources” in order to make predictions ranging from protests across the globe to various other natural, social and financial events and patterns.

 

Similarly, epidemiologists look at “such studies [but] are typically few in number, employ heuristic assessments, and are frequently retrospective analyses, rather than aimed at generating predictions for guiding near-term action.”

 

Social and political

 

Recorded Future is a company funded by both Google and the CIA that, by using Amazon.com’s massive servers, uses “over 150 000” resources from news archives, blogs and social media. In a recent example the company introduced a live interactive map depicting outbreaks of protests and the possibilities of near future outbreaks.

 

By constantly searching for keywords using “ground breaking algorithms” floating across the web and even ‘stealing’ private data or monitoring the web the company has found ways to predict certain crucial events. The ethics is one of the many obstacles associated with ‘unlocking’ Big Data using on the web. The company holds the idea dear that “all of the information on the web holds predictive power, and it is just waiting to be unlocked.”

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Tableau Software in $150 Million IPO Filing, BigData Visualization ...

Tableau Software in $150 Million IPO Filing, BigData Visualization ... | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Data Visualization – it's one of the unsung heroes in the Big Data picture, but that appears to be changing. Seattle-based data visualization company Tableau Software filed its IPO statement with the U.S.
luiy's insight:

This attention to performance and features was accentuated by the company’s latest product release, Tableau 8.0. The product remains true to enterprise capabilities and adds a few new ones including real-time processing for multiple data points, the ability to query Google BigTable data sets, and a direct connection into Google Analytics. The release is not without critics however as blogger Stephen Few shared his take on the release.

Tableau has a special place in my heart. Not long after starting Perceptual Edge, I discovered Tableau in its original release and wrote the first independent review of Tableau 1. I was thrilled, for in Tableau I found a BI software company that shared my vision of visual data exploration and analysis done well. Since then I’ve used Tableau, along with Spotfire, Panopticon, and SAS JMP, to illustrate good data visualization functionality in my courses and lectures. Until recently, I assumed that Tableau, of all these vendors, would be the one mostly likely to continue its tenacious commitment to best practices. However, what I’ve seen in Tableau 8, due to be released soon, has broken my heart. Tableau is now introducing visualizations that are analytically impoverished. Tableau’s vision has become blurred.

One thing for sure, Tableau is evolving and as Kristen Nicole noted there’s a lot of adoption taking place and some are looking at this as the “new BI”.

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"Facebook vacations" : Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook Home, Money, and the Future of Communication

"Facebook vacations" : Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook Home, Money, and the Future of Communication | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Photograph by Platon FACEBOOK Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook Home, Money, and the Future of Communication As caretaker of a service with a bill

Via Pierre Levy
luiy's insight:
But sharing can be exhausting. You hear about people taking “Facebook vacations.” It’s an interesting phenomenon. We have two ways to turn off Facebook: deactivate and delete. The group who chooses to turn Facebook off permanently is relatively small, but there’s a larger set of people who will deactivate their account for a day or two because they want to focus and study for a test—it’s the equivalent of locking yourself in the library. It’s actually a very popular feature. Did you ever take a Facebook vacation? I don’t think I ever have. I certainly turn off my phone from time to time. Changes made to Facebook used to reliably draw outrage, especially over privacy concerns. But when you announced Graph Search, which allows users to find more personal information shared by their friends, there wasn’t much of an outcry. What have you learned? One of the things we did a lot better this time is we talked to a lot of folks to understand the concerns of organizations and others. Typically we have an iterative approach, but here we felt, in terms of privacy, everything had to be there at the beginning. The project was actually ready to go in December, but we took an extra month to build more privacy tools. You say Facebook follows “the Hacker Way.” How is it core to what happens here? It really is our philosophy for how we build stuff. There are a bunch of companies that try to make every release perfect, and Apple is the best at that. That’s wonderful, but there’s another way of doing things that’s potentially even better over the long term—allow yourself room to experiment and don’t try to make each individual release as polished as possible. You’re not yet 30 and you’ve begun to make some significant charitable contributions. What’s your thinking on this? Bill Gates offered me some advice: Don’t just give your money away—it’s something that requires practice to get good at. So why wait? Clearly I have a day job that takes up 99 percent of my time, so I can’t be running a foundation. But I can take a venture capital approach, where you invest in people. I made the investment in Newark schools because I really believed in the governor and mayor over there, and they’ve delivered.
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Pierre Levy's curator insight, April 5, 2013 10:53 AM

But sharing can be exhausting. You hear about people taking “Facebook vacations.” It’s an interesting phenomenon. We have two ways to turn off Facebook: deactivate and delete. The group who chooses to turn Facebook off permanently is relatively small, but there’s a larger set of people who will deactivate their account for a day or two because they want to focus and study for a test—it’s the equivalent of locking yourself in the library. It’s actually a very popular feature.

Lorena Betta's curator insight, April 7, 2013 9:04 AM

.

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ICIJ Lifts Veil on Offshore World

ICIJ Lifts Veil on Offshore World | e-Xploration | Scoop.it

Via Pierre Levy
luiy's insight:
The files illustrate how offshore financial secrecy has spread aggressively around the globe, allowing the wealthy to avoid taxes, fueling corruption and economic woes in rich and poor nations. The current banking crisis in Cyprus is one example of how the offshore system can impact an entire country’s financial stability. The ICIJ worked with 86 investigative journalists from 46 countries and used data mining software and old fashioned shoe leather reporting to unveil the previously hidden but thriving world of fraud, tax dodging and political corruption. To analyze the documents, ICIJ collaborated with journalists from The Guardian and the BBC in the U.K., Le Monde in France, Süddeutsche Zeitung and Norddeutscher Rundfunk in Germany, The Washington Post, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and 31 other media partners around the world. The reporters and editors on the project team thoroughly fact-checked the data and cross-referenced it with other information, including court records, government reports and financial databases. Team members interviewed hundreds of experts, government officials, attorneys, offshore clients and other sources around the world. Among the countries included in the data are: Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Denmark, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kosovo, Latvia, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldova, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, and Venezuela.
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Pierre Levy's curator insight, April 4, 2013 4:59 PM

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), a project of the Center for Public Integrity, released today its first of many reports from a 15-month investigation that cracks open the historically impenetrable world of offshore tax havens.

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Is “social science” an oxymoron? Will that ever change?

Is “social science” an oxymoron? Will that ever change? | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
I've been mulling over the potential, and limits, of social science again lately. One reason is that last month philosopher James Weatherall of the University of ... (“@sciammind: Is "social science" an oxymoron?
luiy's insight:

So we are left with a paradox: Although social science is in many respects quite weak, it can also be extraordinarily potent in terms of its impact, for ill or good, on our lives. Think of all the harm done in the name of Marx—and of social Darwinist and free-market theorists, from Herbert Spencer to Milton Friedman.

 

But social scientists can improve the world, too. Those I admire most combine rigorous empiricism with a resistance to absolute answers. These are researchers like anthropologist Sarah Blaffer Hrdy, who examines the behavior of primates and early humans for insights into modern gender roles; economist Jeffrey Sachs, who seeks ways to reduce third-world poverty; or political scientist Gene Sharp, an authority on nonviolent social activism.

Social scientists are especially dangerous when they insist—and convince others—that they have discovered absolute truths about humanity, truths that tell us what we are and even what we should be. Hence social scientists—more than any other scientists—should be humble, or at least modest, in making claims.

 

Here’s a more specific suggestion: Social scientists should consider identifying not with the harder sciences or the humanities but with engineering.

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Steganography, The Art Of Data Hiding vs Data Mining

Steganography, The Art Of Data Hiding vs Data Mining | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Steganography, The Art Of Data Hiding vs Data Mining

Via Siarhei Mardovich
luiy's insight:

Steganography use is on the rise, and not just among criminals, hackers, child pornographers, and terrorists.


 Persecuted citizens and dissidents under authoritarian regimes use it to evade government censorship, and journalists can use it to conceal sources. For those that are addicted to the TV drama hits,The Following on Fox or Homeland on Showtime, these techniques have already been woven into some of the plot lines.

Steganography is an information-smuggling technique—the communication of secret messaging tucked inside a perfectly innocent carrier. The methods are aimed at hiding the very existence of the communication, whereby any unacquainted observer would remain unaware of the presence of the steganographic exchange. 

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QB Avatar Telepresence Robot Lets You Go to Work Virtually

QB Avatar Telepresence Robot Lets You Go to Work Virtually | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Electronic Design's Power and Analog Editor, Don Tuite, was invited to Maxim Integrated to learn more about the QB Avatar telepresence robot from Anybots. Anybots QB is the closest thing to attendi...
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Electronic Design’s Power and Analog Editor, Don Tuite, was invited to Maxim Integrated to learn more about the QB Avatar telepresence robot from Anybots.

 

Anybots QB is the closest thing to attending an event in person. It allows a visitor to remotely navigate facilities and communicate and collaborate with individuals or groups of people through their Windows or Mac computer.  What’s more, your entire virtual experience can be recorded in addition to broadcasting live over the internet for others to watch.

 

The robot is easy to operate and QB will keep you or your guests in touch without having to physically be at the location.  See and be seen, hear and be heard, and move through faraway places as if you were actually there.

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Egyptology meets Digital Humanities: the Book of the Dead

Egyptology meets Digital Humanities: the Book of the Dead | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
website description (RT @CKamposiori: Egyptology meets Digital Humanities: the Book of the Dead - http://t.co/YUuBvXW6 #digitalhumanities)
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The Egyptian “Book of the Dead” has been the object of study in a long term research project of the North Rhine-Westfalian Academy of Science and the Arts, operated at the University of Bonn (early 1990s - 2012). The “Book” is a corpus of c. 200 spells in the form of texts and/or illustrations (vignettes) and witnessed in varying order and completeness by c. 3000 objects. Within the digitization efforts of the academy, in 2011, the Cologne Center for eHumanities (CCeH) was commissioned to transform the internal research database and the image archive into a digital research platform. It is built on a project specific data model for object descriptions and a contextual knowledge base. Regarding data standards and techniques, the digital environment resides completely in the X-world: underlying XML data, an eXist database as backbone and XQuery, XSLT and XForms as processing methods to create the user interface. The archive provides several browse & search facilities allowing to explore the textual and visual witnesses. New information can be added by input interfaces, and various indices and visualizations have been prepared to support scholars in finding answers to their research questions. In addition to a general overview on the project and its achievements, three particular issues will be addressed: practical and theoretical implications of data visualization, the integration of the archive into the research community by technical interfaces, and the question of a sustainable information resource beyond the funding period.

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Healthcare needs advanced big data applications

A recent report by InformationWeek highlighted the growing market for big data, which is driving the need for organizations to adopt advanced applications that can streamline human tasks without jeopardizing security.
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Commonwealth of Learning - Linked Data for Open and Distance Learning

Commonwealth of Learning - Linked Data for Open and Distance Learning | e-Xploration | Scoop.it

Via Ana Cristina Pratas, Rui Guimarães Lima
luiy's insight:

In this report, we introduce a recent development in the area of Web technologies which has the potential to revolutionise the area of ODL: The Semantic Web. While the Semantic Web has been, until now mostly considered from a research perspective, we focus here on the concrete benefit that can today be obtained from applying the set of principles and technologies that have emerged from the most pragmatic part of the Semantic Web field: Linked Data.

 

Linked Data relies on the simple idea that the mechanisms used nowadays to share and interlink documents on the Web can be applied to share and interlink data and metadata about these documents, as well as the concepts and entities they relate to. On the Web of Linked Data, every “data object” (representing for example a person, a place or a topic) is identified by a Web address, and characterised using Web links that can connect to representations of other data objects, identified by other Web addresses, thus using the Web as a giant data graph that openly draws from any contributing source.

 

In this report we describe how this idea is being realised and how it can be adopted by organisations willing to contribute, interlink to and take advantage of the Web of Linked Data for ODL. We describe the tools, technologies and processes to publish and use Linked Data in a concrete way, focusing in particular on learning and teaching applications. Understanding both the costs and benefits of adopting Linked Data and Semantic Web technologies is, of course, a critical part of the process. Alongside the description and explanation of the technological notions related to this area we show how such notions can be applied to solve some of the specific problems faced in ODL and present a number of case studies in which such benefits have been concretely achieved.

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Rosemary Tyrrell's curator insight, April 6, 2013 4:43 PM

Some interesting data. 

John Gallo, PhD's curator insight, July 11, 2013 3:09 PM

could be key

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Reseaux, Traces, Controverses

Réseaux, Traces et Controverses Projet de recherche produit par Franck GHITALLA (analyse des données et cartographie), INIST. Mots clefs : controverses, in
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Context awareness at a party in Haren

Context awareness at a party in Haren | e-Xploration | Scoop.it
Volg de Centric-blog over The Internet of Things, Cloud Computing, Het Nieuwe Werken, interoperabiliteit en Sustainable Architecture.
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Situational awarenessThe random coalitions - created by people and objects - communicated and acted on the basis of information that was exchanged and shared within available telecom networks and the Internet. Prior to and during the activity there was a wealth of information sent via, for example, WhatsApp, SMS or Twitter at that specific time and place. These messages, stemming from modern technological applications, blended via hubs - formed by journalists, for example - with the more traditional media, such as radio and television. In this way multiple coalitions and networks became connected. Subsequently an undesired connection was created between the contexts present in the network, which developed into a situation that was unforeseeable. Not predicting such a situation in the preparation made it difficult to determine how the situation escalated and developed at the time of the event. The latter is described in literature as ‘situational awareness’ or knowing what is going on around one. Situational awareness is essential for rapid and adequate decision-making in specific situations
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Mining the Web to Predict Future Events

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ABSTRACT


We describe and evaluate methods for learning to forecast forthcoming events of interest from a corpus containing 22 years of news stories. We consider the examples of identifying signi cant increases in the likelihood of disease out-breaks, deaths, and riots in advance of the occurrence of these events in the world. We provide details of methods and studies, including the automated extraction and generalization of sequences of events from news corpora and multiple web resources. We evaluate the predictive power of the
approach on real-world events withheld from the system.

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