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David Weinberger

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Chris Soghoian is giving a Berkman lunchtime talk called: “Caught in the Cloud: Privacy, Encryption, and Government Back Doors in the Web 2.0 Era,” based on paper he’s just written. In the interest of time, he’s not going to talk about the “miscreants in government” today. Pew says that “over 69% of Americans use webmail services, store data online, or other use software programs such as word processing applications whose functionality is in the cloud.” Chris’ question: Why have cloud providers failed to provide adequate security for the customers. (”Cloud computing” = users’ data is stored on a company server and the app is delivered through a browser.) NOTE: Live-blogging. Getting things wrong. Missing points. Omitting key information. Introducing artificial choppiness. Over-emphasizing small matters. Paraphrasing badly. Not running a spellpchecker. Mangling othe... (more)

Piracy in Developing Countries

Joe Karaganis, of the Social Science Research Council, is giving a talk at the Berkman Center on a six-country study on media (music, film and software) piracy. The study began in 2004 and should be available in March. NOTE: Live-blogging. Getting things wrong. Missing points. Omitting key information. Introducing artificial choppiness. Over-emphasizing small matters. Paraphrasing badly. Not running a spellpchecker. Mangling other people’s ideas and words. You are warned, people.“The elephant in the room” they thought was piracy. Previous studies on access to media tended to avo... (more)

Twitter Metadata and Where Standards Come From

Matthew Ingram at Gigagom blogs about an upcoming Twitter feature called Twitter Annotations. Well, it’s not actually a feature. It’s the ability to attach metadata to a tweet. This is potentially great news, since it will give us a way to add context to tweets and to enable machine-processing of tweets, not to mention that URLs could be sent as metadata rather than as subtractions from the 140-character limit. This is yet another example of information scaling to the point where we have to introduce more information to manage it. How about one of those bogus “laws” people seem t... (more)

Full-text searching Harvard Library: a hacky mashup

I’m a little proud of this, although it’s a total hack job, and not in the good sense.Take it as a library mashup. Harvard Library has 13M items in its collection. Harvard is digitizing many of them, but as of now you cannot do a full text search of them. Google Books had 30M books digitized as of a year ago. You can do full-text searches of them. So, I wrote a little app that lets you search Google Books for text, and then matches up the results with books in Harvard Library. It’s a proof of concept, and I’m counting the concept as proved, or at least as promising. On the other... (more)

Will the gPhone Make a Difference?

David Weinberger's Blog There's a really interesting (free) article by Amol Sharma in the Wall Street Journal about Google's expected cellphone software, and whether Google will be able to do the necessary deals with the mobile carriers. In addition to providing core Google apps (search, maps, YouTube, etc.), the rumor is that the Google mobile operating system will be open to developers who want to use the phone's services, such as GPS data. The article includes this from Microsoft: Microsoft executives question what impact Google will have. "The idea that there are all these t... (more)