15 March 2015

SXSWi Screenburn 2015 report

Biggest screenburn ever, with a big “indie zone”. Upsilon Circuit. A reality TV gameshow arranged around an action RPG. The “stars” play 8 at a time, and when they die they’re permanently eliminated. The real game is what the audience do to intervene in the game. It’s a bit like crowdsourced D&D. I could see something like this becoming a TV show. It has its own Max Headroom style presenter who resembles Doonesbury’s Ron Headrest. ... Read more

14 March 2015

Iterative bad design

« Concerns have been raised about intermittent faults when opening the doors of the Class 377 trains at certain stations on the Thameslink route. » The original problem? Engineers decided to use GPS location to determine whether the trains are in a station. Unfortunately, GPS is provided by satellites, so it doesn’t work in tunnels or underground — for example, at stations like St Pancras. The engineers’ solution: Install GPS repeaters in the stations to transmit GPS signals down the tunnels. ... Read more

10 March 2015

The ACLU gets it wrong

The ACLU has decided to take the side of the Washington Redskins: Last June, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office cancelled the football team’s federally registered trademark, which it deemed disparaging to Native Americans. We don’t disagree with that judgment, but the government should not be able to decide what types of speech are forbidden – even when the speech in question reflects viewpoints we all agree are repellent. ... Read more

9 March 2015

Random Apple thoughts

38 models of Apple watch, presumably powered by the sound of Steve Jobs spinning in his grave. Entry level price: $350 for the aluminium model. You know what’s a really terrible material to make a watch casing out of? Aluminium. Soft metal. If you’re anything like me it’ll be covered in small dents after a year or two. Still, you can buy next year’s model then, right? ... Read more

1 March 2015

Craig Brittain, Kevin Bollaert, Hunter Moore and Casey Meyering

It’s been a bad week for Craig Brittain: « An ongoing CBS4 Investigation has found indications that Craig Brittain, the operator of a Colorado Springs-based “revenge porn” website, may have pretended he was a woman to trick other women into sending him nude pictures. » « Craig Brittain—the former operator of revenge porn site IsAnybodyDown.com—is invoking the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) in a bid to remove 23 links in all—an irony-filled DMCA takedown request that Google is ignoring. ... Read more

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