“We have more processing power, affordable tools, and combined intelligence right this very minute than at any point in the history of design. We are using it to build shit. It’s time to aim higher. Let’s find problems to solve that actually improve people’s lives.”—
“I passionately believe that the purpose of a modern web design is purely to provide a neutral canvas to elegantly display content, allowing users to interact with it in natural, innate ways, and that it should be optimized for whatever device the user chooses to access it on.”—
“The show went on sale at noon on Saturday, December 10th. 12 hours later, we had over 50,000 purchases and had earned $250,000, breaking even on the cost of production and website. As of Today, we’ve sold over 110,000 copies for a total of over $500,000. Minus some money for PayPal charges etc, I have a profit around $200,000 (after taxes $75.58). This is less than I would have been paid by a large company to simply perform the show and let them sell it to you, but they would have charged you about $20 for the video. They would have given you an encrypted and regionally restricted video of limited value, and they would have owned your private information for their own use. They would have withheld international availability indefinitely. This way, you only paid $5, you can use the video any way you want, and you can watch it in Dublin, whatever the city is in Belgium, or Dubai. I got paid nice, and I still own the video (as do you). You never have to join anything, and you never have to hear from us again.”—
NASA’s Kepler Mission announced the discovery of a newly confirmed planet, Kepler-22b. Kepler-22b is located 600 light years away, and is 2.4 times the radius of Earth. It orbits a star similar to our sun, and is the smallest found to orbit in the middle of a habitable zone. Though the planet is larger than Earth, its orbit is only 290 days. Scientists have yet to find out Kepler-22b’s composition, whether it is rocky, gaseous or liquid.
Of the 54 habitable planet candidates reported in February 2011, Kepler-22b is the first to be confirmed. The discovery of Kepler-22b brings NASA one step closer to finding Earth-like planets. The planet’s host star belongs to the same class as our sun, called G-type, although it is slightly smaller and cooler.
However, what allowed Tumblr to build its SOPA bashing machine is something unique to Tumblr that I’ve never observed in any other social media service: A SPINE. What other company has ever demonstrated such willingness to inconvenience and confuse millions of users in order to draw attention to a cause it truly believes in? Name one.
“It’s not marketing. It’s doing what matters, it’s doing what works, it’s doing it as well as possible, and it’s explaining it to people in terms they understand. It’s being great and telling the truth about it.”—Jed Sundwall, from The Words of Steve Jobs | The Measured Voice Blog
I’ve been lamenting the fact that JoCo’s new album can’t be readily shared, because he doesn’t have it listed alongside the other music on his website yet. Just now I realized that the CC-BY-NC license on the album makes that unnecessary, because I can share the songs with you directly. Advantage: the future.
“There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there — good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that maurauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory… Now look. You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea — God Bless! Keep a Big Hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”—Elizabeth Warren (via jacobjoaquin)
“Han. Was. Lying. He was lying his ass off, because he thought he could maybe get some quick cash off a dumb farmboy and desert hermit. His ship is garbage and he’s not a great pilot. He’s an ordinary criminal who happened to get thrown into an extraordinary situation, and ended up turning into a hero.”—
“All of us have special ones who loved us into being… the people who have helped you become who you are, those who cared about you and wanted what was best for you in life. … You know they’re kind of people television does well to offer our world.”—from Fred Rogers Acceptance Speech - 1997 (thx Jed)
“Nerds: You know more about technology than anybody else, and anybody who knows less than you is a total ****. I love you for that. But normal people deserve wonderful technology too. And half the **** you call computing—running custom ROMs, reinstalling OSes, ****ing with network settings—is like a chef sharpening his knives over and over and calling that cooking. Real computing is the actual stuff you do—cutting videos, editing photos, writing. Or at least it should be. Not the **** people do to make all of that work.”—
Yes. This was the exact epiphany I had a decade ago when it became clear that I was using Karen’s computer more than my own because I kept fiddling with settings and drivers and infrastructure. Had to fiddle with that stuff just to make it work at all, and never got past that point to anything even remotely useful.
It was like being stopped at the entrance to a restaurant and having to fill out a 50-page questionnaire about your preferences in fork style and placement, glass style, water level, lighting level and color, cloth or paper napkins, small or large plates, plate rim color…
The best day of my technical life was when I realized the defaults on her machine were good enough to do what I needed, so I didn’t need to choose them all over and over again.
“As of 2Q/2011, the WB-8 device has demonstrated excellent plasma confinement properties. EMC2 is conducting high power pulsed experiments on WB-8 to test the Wiffle-Ball plasma scaling law on plasma energy and confinement.”—
from the Project Summary provided by the Energy/Matter Conversion Corporation to Recovery.gov.
In other words, they’re making great progress on creating a breakthrough fusion device that could change all our lives.
I can’t stress enough how important this is; a Navy project that would ordinarily have been completely confidential is seeing a little sunlight because of the reporting requirements associated with stimulus funds. The results are being posted to the Polywell page on Wikipedia, which folds in other scraps of information the company leaks out occasionally.
“Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And, the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics: You are all stardust. You couldn’t be here if stars hadn’t exploded, because the elements - the carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, iron, all the things that matter for evolution and for life - weren’t created at the beginning of time. They were created in the nuclear furnaces of stars, and the only way for them to get into your body is if those stars were kind enough to explode. So, forget Jesus. The stars died so that you could be here today.”— Lawrence M. Krauss (via wilwheaton)