Contract for the Web: Tim Berners-Lee calls on world governments (and us all) to make the web a force for good / Boing Boing:

Governments that sign on are asked to promise to “ensure everyone can connect to the internet,” to “keep all the internet available all the time,” and to “respect and protect people’s fundamental online privacy and data rights.”

Corporate signatories promise that they will “make the internet affordable and accessible to everyone,” “respect and protect people’s privacy and personal data to build online trust,” and “develop technologies that support the best in humanity and challenge the worst.”

Individuals are asked to “be creators and collaborators on the Web,” “build strong communities that respect civil discourse and human dignity,” and “fight for the Web.”

My changing gears from Facebook to WordPress and other outlets started before this contract was posted, but absolutely in that spirit.

I don’t know that anyone is noticing, but I know…

How to recognize AI snake oil / Boing Boing:

Princeton computer scientist Arvind Narayanan (previously) has posted slides and notes from a recent MIT talk on “How to recognize AI snake oil” in which he divides AI applications into three (nonexhaustive) categories and rates how difficult they are, and thus whether you should believe vendors who claim that their machine learning models can perform as advertised.

(164) iSongs – YouTube

November 21, 2019

(164) iSongs – YouTube:

Popular songs covered with Garage Band on iPhone, in realtime.

I have done this once, The Who’s Baba O’Relily, with a bit of trial and error… It’s fun.

Fun Tip: You can export from Garage Band to a ringtone, if so inclined…

A low moment in Apple’s proud history, and a sadly iconic moment for Tim Cook. I hope avoiding those tariffs is worth it.
— Read on daringfireball.net/2019/11/cook_trump_campaign_ad

Taken together, they show how Zuckerberg, along with his board and management team, found ways to tap Facebook users’ data — including information about friends, relationships and photos — as leverage over the companies it partnered with. In some cases, Facebook would reward partners by giving them preferential access to certain types of user data while denying the same access to rival companies.
— Read on www.nbcnews.com/news/all/leaked-documents-show-facebook-leveraged-user-data-fight-rivals-help-n1076986

Back to windows after twenty years – Signal v. Noise
— Read on m.signalvnoise.com/back-to-windows-after-twenty-years/

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What this experiment taught me, though, was just how much I actually like OSX. How much satisfaction I derive from its font rendering. How lovely my code looks in TextMate 2. How easy it is to live that *nix developer life, while still using a computer where everything (well, except that fucking keyboard!) mostly just works.

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My very favorite quote along these lines is from Brian Kernighan: “Everyone knows that debugging is twice as hard as writing a program in the first place. So if you’re as clever as you can be when you write it, how will you ever debug it?”
— Read on daringfireball.net/linked/2019/11/01/van-rossum-clever-code

I find that python, and Perl before it, are laden with “clever solution” issues which make it near impossible for someone else to pick up a codebase and run with it.