The Sunlight Foundation has released an interesting open data discovery app called Sitegeist. Working from a host of open data sets, the app helps to provide another view of a neighborhood, town or city.

Here’s a few of the data points the app provides.

    Age Distribution
    Political Contributions
    Average Rent
    Popular Local Spots
    Recommended Restaurants
    How People Commute
    Record Temperatures
    Housing Units Over Time

The biggest lie on the internet

Terms of Service Didn’t Read (ToS;DR) is a user rights initiative to rate and label website terms & privacy policies, from very good Class A to very bad Class E. Terms of Service agreements have become a kind of Faustian Bargin where most people often too lazy to read the massive amounts of text (For instance, Facebook’s terms of service is longer than the U.S. Constitution) happily click and agree. Buried in non-human friendly language users often grant away rights as well as usage of personal data in exchange for access to a site and / or service.

Mapping the Internet

Fortune Magazine has an interesting article that details how the internet is cabled around the world – much of which travels underwater. The massive fiber-optic cabling forms the backbone of the internet.

From Fortune Magazine

If the Internet is a global phenomenon, it’s because there are fiber-optic cables underneath the ocean. Light goes in on one shore and comes out the other, making these tubes the fundamental conduit of information throughout the global village. To make the light travel enormous distances, thousands of volts of electricity are sent through the cable’s copper sleeve to power repeaters, each the size and roughly the shape of a 600-pound bluefin tuna. One rests on the ocean floor every 50 miles or so. Inside its pressurized case is a miniature racetrack of the element erbium, which, when energized, gooses the particles of light along like a waterwheel.


Mind of Man

Mind of Man is an interesting new game from 2 paper dolls that harnesses the power of the tweet and sentiment analysis to create a compelling social game.

From 2 paper dolls:

Mind of Man for Twitter®, reveals how the world sees you by turning your text and behaviors into unique digital avatars. The avatars, called MindPrints, identify players’ most dominant traits and emotions relative to their friends, favorite celebrities, and the rest of the Twitterverse.

While popular social media tools rank only power or influence, Mind of Man portrays players’ online personalities, character flaws, even anti-social tendencies through crowdsourcing. Players earn both virtual and real-world rewards for judging sentiment on Twitter.

Check it out

Teens and Mobile usage in US

Adolescents have been called “digital natives,” but data suggests that they are both comfortable with new technologies, and yet not always as technically savvy as we collectively believe them to be.

Half of teens send 50 or more text messages a day, or 1,500 texts a month, and one in three send more than 100 texts a day, or more than 3,000 texts a month. – Pew Research Center

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Transmedia Design and Conceptualization – The Making of Purefold

MIT’s Futures of Entertainment conference is held each fall. I had the privilege of speaking at the event in 2008. It’s an amazing mix of people from various sides of the industry. This past year the conference had a number of excellent transmedia focused panels. In the following panel the team behind Purefold give an inside look at the project.

From MITs site
Drawing together members of Ag8, creative collaborators, and representatives from a major brand sponsor, this panel will examine the project from a variety of perspectives. Exploring the motivations for building a transmedia project around Blade Runner, the panel looks at the potential transmedia might offer for revitalizing older properties. It explores the roles different stakeholders play in the conception and design of a project, as well as the challenges of meeting varying desires and ambitions. The panel considers whether some genres are better suited for transmedia properties than others, and looks at how to extend existing properties with substantial fan bases, considering questions of co-creation and fan/audience production.

Moderator: Geoffrey Long – Gambit-MIT
Panelists include: David Bausola – Co-founder of Ag8; Tom Himpe – Co-founder of Ag8; Mauricio Mota – Chief Storytelling Officer, co-founder The Alchemists; C3 Consulting Practitioner; Leo Sa – Petrobras