critical reading for the rude

aol taiwan

And Hong Kong.

And Sphere in play.

And the iPhone interface.

Despite Time-Warner’s wingeing and waffling, AOL seems to be getting less irrelevant.  I’m suddenly interested.


April 18, 2008 Posted by | info viz, search | 1 Comment

hello world, qr code

“Hello, world!” is a real installation for the virtual globe of
the software Google Earth. A Semacode measuring 160 x 160 meters was mown into a wheat field near the town of Ilmenau in the Land Thuringia. The code consists of 18 x 18 bright and dark squares producing decoded the phrase “Hello, world!”.
The project was realized in May 2006 and photographs were taken of it during a picture flight in the following month.

This here:

…is where your virtual and your ‘real’ get all tangled up and soupy.

October 3, 2007 Posted by | geo/pol, info sci, info viz, search | , , , , , | 2 Comments

spook country: google cse

find yourself exhausted in the search for archival sources reporting government sub-contractor’s activities in particular black ops? need authoritative analysis of de-classified documents? want to know what your representatives in congress say about anti-grav propulsion technology?

maybe you just wonder who-knows-who between the Blackwater bunch and the Rendon Group.

you need you some [spook country research]

September 21, 2007 Posted by | geo/pol, info sci, search | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

google cse: silversword

find yourself exhausted in the search for quality commentary on the grimoire of Pope Honorius? don’t fret. here’s a tool for those hard to reach “occult” places, when you get tired of stumbling over flaky sites selling chintzy trinkets:

‘silversword occult search’

September 21, 2007 Posted by | books, info sci, occult, search | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

library sparring

An ongoing game of “finding out” would be a good exercise for librarian bloggers. Do more with the outboard memory than store info — maybe run a few hot cycles, pour some ether in the carburetor?

In that spirit, what’s this:


July 23, 2007 Posted by | blogs, info sci, occult, search | 2 Comments

gaming culture, libraries

Open ‘note to self’,

read if you want to.

just thinking out loud

abt instruction, libraries, and “digital natives” (ha!)


The kids who were born in 1990 (BORN in 1990!) are in our library… many “grew up” online… and watching teevee that referenced “online life”… You’ve Got Mail… that Sandra bullock movie abt ‘the net’, Hackers in 94? many better examples. Et.c. These are webby people. And they’re still learning and growing…. Developing (RIGHT NOW) more advanced critical thinking faculties, we hope…

they’re on that myspace and that e-mail, using them world wide webs, on that zwinky and facebook, and trading mp3s and mp4s, and e-mailing Craig Ferguson and e-mailing tha RZA fan mail. They’re frustrated when the web isn’t easy to use, and they don’t understand that there’s a wider Internet of which ‘tha web’ is just a subset.

for them, sadly, books are dusty dead-ends. We’ve got to show them how the web opens books. How our webby tools behoove them… get them the grades.


virtual environments even as CRUMMY as myspace are their turf.

Video or virtual games is how they learn to solve probs.

There must be ways to exploit their fascination with the virtual, to teach them information literacy skills, cyberliteracy skills, critical thinking, for their own benefit. There be many good ways, yah.

All learning is distance learning once they step out of the “2.5 hrs in desks” – profs using that time to push info to attentitve listners? Hopefully, hopefully, but real learning is independent learning. Real learning happens when you make the connection for yourself, you open the book for yrself, you seek that key bit of gov’ment statistics in the NIH database yrself.

It only takes 20 years for a liberal to become a conservative without changing a single idea.Robert Anton Wilson

Nothing of any importance can be taught. It can only be learned, and with blood and sweat. – ibid.

How do we enable self-teaching and classroom teaching for these webby learners?

Take a digital game world, throw it in a blender, add some information and research skills, sift out the word educational and maybe, just maybe, we have a new and effective way to teach our students bibliographic instruction.

Something to think on…

Related – Second Life, mmporgs, learning-by-doing, strategy and critical thinking…

Fictional economies, economies of attention, social positioning via problem solving…

Bibliographic instruction formatted for participation, execution of searches…

Beyond the ‘scavenger hunt’… points for playing = real stakes. REAL STAKES.

From virtual to “real”. Physical to informational and back again. AR v. VR.

how do we use these media

as object lessons

for instruction in using these media

for real-world outcomes… i wonder.

I do wonder that.

July 23, 2007 Posted by | info sci, libraries, search, teaching | 4 Comments

search sans ads / viz impaired

|Update| Aha! Ranking based on accessibility:

Accessible Search is an early Google Labs product designed to identify and prioritize search results that are more easily usable by blind and visually impaired users. Regular Google search helps you find a set of documents that is most relevant to your tasks. Accessible Search goes one step further by helping you find the most accessible pages in that result set. 

This seems to have the net effect of letting you search with Google and view results without seeing sponsored links or ads. Also, the simpler layout makes it easier to view in high contrast and in magnification. Billed as an “accessible search” to aid the visually impaired, I’ll be using it to search sans ads till my eyes give out.

The announcement is here:

The thing itself lives here:

It lives inside the co-op / “custom search” house.

July 5, 2007 Posted by | info viz, search | Leave a comment

note to self: swivel, chief.

& find yr login to Many Eyes!!

July 5, 2007 Posted by | info sci, info viz, search | 1 Comment

grisly google speculation & dark fiber

From National Post:

…Google’s plan has been underway for some time and is now gaining momentum. For at least the past three years, the company has been buying up swaths of unused fibre-optic cable — so-called “dark fibre” — around the world. Telephone and cable companies overbuilt these lines, which form the basis of the Internet, during the tech boom in the early part of this decade and Google has been only too happy to take the unused infrastructure off their hands.

The company is secretive about exactly how much fibre it owns, saying only that the cables are needed to connect its data and storage facilities, which power its various search and Internet services. Experts, however, estimate the company has far more fibre than it needs for such purposes.

A day old and already dated — Google’s got GrandCentral… Anybody been reading Jeanneney lately?  Any of you folks at Google into it?  Been reading your Borges, I hope?  Anybody?  Listening to that R.E.M. and their rock -n- roll songs?  Okay.

July 4, 2007 Posted by | blogs, info sci, search | 2 Comments

how to library 2.0

|Update|  For the very paranoiac admins out there, NOTICE:

Views expressed by banner ads and comments are not associated with, and are not representative of, the views of the Fort Worth Public Library System or Fort Worth City Government.

Yeah, this is a good start. Now how are your patrons going to find the Virb page? And the MySpace page? But once there… once they’re there, you drive them right back to your services. And that’s gold-star worthy.

(Look, dammit, they’ve actually included a catalog search box right on their Virb page! That can’t be over underscored. And look! Dammit! I just noticed that they do it on their MySpace page too!)

Thank you, Fort Worth.

July 3, 2007 Posted by | blogs, books, libraries, search | 5 Comments