I already hate the phrase "fake news". We have better words to describe lies, disinformation, propaganda and slander, so lets just use those. While the phrase "fake news" might originally have been used to refer to hoaxes and disinformation, it's rapidly becoming a meaningless term used to refer to anything you don't disagree with. Trump's recent … Continue reading A river of research, not news
As of last month Google News attempts to highlight fact check articles. Content from fact checking organisations will be tagged so that their contribution to on-line debate can be more clearly identified. I think this is a great move and a first small step towards addressing wider concerns around use of the web for disinformation and … Continue reading Checking Fact Checkers
I've been thinking a bit about "the commons" recently. Specifically, the global information commons that is enabled and supported by Creative Commons (CC) licences. This covers an increasingly wide variety of content as you can see in their recent annual review. The review unfortunately doesn't mention data although there's an increasing amount of that published using … Continue reading Digital public institutions for the information commons?
The phrase "fictional data" popped into my head recently, largely because of odd connections between a couple of projects I've been working on. It's stuck with me because, if you set aside the literal meaning of "data that doesn't actually exist", there are some interesting aspects to it. For example the phrase could apply to: … Continue reading Fictional data
A year ago Netflix announced that they were shuttering their public API: no new API keys or affiliates and no more support. Earlier this week they announced that the entire public API will be shutdown by November 2014. This is interesting news and its been covered in various places already, including this good overview at … Continue reading Thoughts on the Netflix API Closure
I was reading a document this week that referred to an "Open API". It occurred to me that I hadn't really thought about what that term was supposed to mean before. Having looked at the API in question, it turned out it did not mean what I thought it meant. The definition of Open API on … Continue reading What is an Open API?
To be successful the web sacrificed some of the features of hypertext systems. Things like backwards linking and link integrity, etc. One of the great things about the web is that its possible to rebuild some of those features, but in a distributed way. Different communities can then address their own requirements. Link integrity is … Continue reading Its about more than the link
I recently completed my first online course (or "MOOC") on Coursera. It was an interesting experience and wanted to share some thoughts here. I decided to take an online course for several reasons. Firstly the topic, Astrobiology, was fun and I thought the short course might make an interesting alternative to watching BBC documentaries and … Continue reading Thoughts on Coursera and Online Courses
Some thinking aloud... I've browsed through the Google App Engine gallery and the applications you can find there at the moment are pretty much what you'd expect: lots of Web 2.0 "share this, share that" sites. These are what you'd expect because firstly they're the kind of simple application you'd build whilst exploring any new … Continue reading Google AppEngine for Personal Web Presence?
Last week I gave a talk at the annual STM innovations seminar. It was a hugely enjoyable event. Kudos to Geoff for arranging an excellent line-up. I thought I'd post some thoughts/comments based on my impressions of the day. The first speaker was Allen Renear who introduced the audience to the changing ways in which … Continue reading STM Innovations Notes