Good Work Getting Kicked In the Head There, Pal

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

This is how the internet handles celebrity, unless of course you're a cat.

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The CAPTCHA is Dead! (Eventually, maybe, sort of.)

Monday, April 21, 2014

No one particularly loves CAPTCHA's, those tiny boxes that make you type in hard to read pieces of text to prove that you're a human being. 

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You Can Be Critical Of Art On the Internet Without Being A Misogynist Jerk

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Edit: I embarrassingly misspelled Eugenia Williamson "Eugenia Williams" initially. I have now fixed. I regret the error.

Last week, PJ and I wrote an article in response to a failed interview between Boston Magazine writer Eugenia Williamson and former child star-turned Velvet Underground parodist Macaulay Culkin. I read the article as fairly mean spirited, viciously personal, and not particularly illuminating of its subject. But in writing the article about it, I strove to keep my critique measured and specific. The larger internet picked up on the story, and didn't make a similar effort.

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#22 - What Happens When You Tell The Whole Internet Your Password

Friday, April 18, 2014

Not really.

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A Study Suggests Online Activism Doesn’t Work, But The Truth is Probably More Complicated

Friday, April 18, 2014

A recent study seems to confirm what most of us already suspect - that Facebook activism isn’t likely, on its own, to lead to real world consequences. Researchers looked at the “Save Darfur” Facebook group and found that despite having 1.2 million members, the group only raised $100,000. That works out to a donation rate of 0.24 percent.

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TLDR Update - Peeking Into The Brain of The Army's Recruitment Robot

Friday, April 18, 2014

In March, I did a story for TLDR about Sgt. Star, the Army website's virtual recruiter that answers questions from potential future soldiers. You can hear that story below.

In that story, we spoke to Dave Maass of the Electronic Frontier Foundation who had sent a FOIA request to the Army for more information on Sgt Star, but had not received any response. But now he has, and he wrote an impressive update on the EFF blog. Among other things, the EFF received every single answer that Sgt Star can give. I spoke to Maass about the things he learned about Sgt Star, like how he was born, his relationship to the CIA and the FBI, and even his astrological sign. Listen to the update below.

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Field Recordings From a Virtual World

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Triple A video game titles (meaning the ones that cost hundreds of millions of dollars and have huge launches) are always trying to push for greater and greater verisimilitude. This is one of the reasons that there is a new round of consoles every 7 years or so, and why sound design in games is ever evolving to better evoke a sense of place. These audio environments are now interesting enough that at least one person has decided to record these habitats for posterity.

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Let’s Stop Sending Nasty Emails to Macaulay Culkin

Thursday, April 17, 2014

When internet writing goes terribly wrong.

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Bill Gates Files Anti-Google Glass Camera Detection Patent

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Looks like Bill Gates is firing some shots at Google Glass. A new patent on which Gates is listed as an inventor proposes a technology that would blur computer monitors or alert users when a camera is present.

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A Google For The Dark Net

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The near-anonymous Tor browser is pretty convenient for buying illegal things online. Except there's no search function. Until now.

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A Teenager Said Something Stupid On Twitter, and Barely Anyone Freaked Out

Monday, April 14, 2014

This weekend, a teenager* directed a stupid terrorism joke at an airline's Twitter account. In return, the airline promised to send the FBI after the teenager. The teenager freaked out. That short exchange was retweeted over 30,000 times.

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It's Not A Fun Week To Work at OpenSSL, The Mostly Volunteer Project Responsible for the Heartbleed Bug

Friday, April 11, 2014

Until earlier this week, it's likely that most internet users had never heard of OpenSSL. But thanks to the Heartbleed bug, which put all manner of usernames and passwords at risk, the OpenSSL project is coming under some serious scrutiny. To understand how the Heartbleed bug happened, it's important to understand how the OpenSSL project works.

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Google Will Now Let You Buy Google Glass (for One Day Only)

Friday, April 11, 2014

Google announced today that they’ll let anybody buy Google Glass, but for one day only. Previously, only a limited number of people were allowed in to Google’s beta test. But next Tuesday, if you’d like, you can plunk down $1,500 for a pair of internet spectacles.

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If You Livetweet Your Favorite Shows, You're An Outlier

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Television pushes social media really hard in its advertising these days. You'll see ads and even TV shows with hashtags in the corner, and anyone who watches AMC shows knows about their whole "second screen experience" deal which keeps you tethered to your computer while you watch The Walking Dead or Mad Men. But Nielsen has found that most viewers aren't all that engaged with social media while they watch TV. 

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#21 - There Is No Such Thing As Silence

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Continuing our expose into the very hush-hush world of Silence, we look at an app that promises to deliver you four minutes and thirty-three seconds of silence. PJ talks to Larry Larson, who helped design the 4'33" app.

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Could George Bush Be Sued For Some Of His Paintings?

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

George Bush's paintings, some of which long ago found their way into the public eye through a leak from the hacker Guccifer, were put on display earlier this week at the George W. Bush presidential center. 

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Here's a site that lets you check to see if you've been compromised by Heartbleed

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

This week, a vulnerability in the OpenSSL protocol called "Heartbleed" was discovered. If none of the words you just read make any sense, here's a good explainer about how 2/3 of the internet was exposed to this security vulnerability. Worried that a website you use regularly was vulnerable? This site can help.

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The Best, Most Inaccurate Twitter Pic Account Around

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

A few weeks ago, we did a TLDR episode about the general inaccuracy of those "amazing pics" accounts, which frequently post photoshopped, poorly sourced, unattributed photos.

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