TLDR #28 - No Trail

Sunday, June 08, 2014

In February of this year, Philip Welsh of Silver Spring, Maryland, was murdered. His murder remains unsolved, largely because he didn't use the internet, and left no digital trail. Alex talks to Philip's family and reporter Dan Morse about the case.

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TLDR #27 - How Google is Killing the Best Site On the Internet

Monday, June 02, 2014

A couple weeks ago, Matt Haughey, the founder of TLDR's favorite website, Metafilter, announced that his website is dying. And he says it's because Google algorithmically stopped directing traffic to the site over a year ago. Alex tries to figure out what you do when Google's algorithm decides it no longer likes you.

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TLDR #26 - A Gold Bottle of Champagne The Size of An Adult Human Man

Monday, May 26, 2014

Most people use social networks to present themselves as happier than they really are - it's hard to get an honest read on anyone. But writer Charlie Warzel believes there's a secret method you can use to find out how someone is actually feeling online. On TLDR this week, we try to use Charlie's method to divine the secret heart of Drake, the rapper.

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A Conversation With Veep's Armando Iannucci

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

For OTM's special hour on Washington DC, Bob spoke with Armando Iannucci, the creator and executive producer of HBO's hit comedy "Veep." We liked that conversation so much, we decided to put up an extended cut here. Iannucci tells Bob about his fascination with American politics, how the show manages to capture the unglamorous details of the nation's capital, and why everyone inside the beltway claims to know a "Jonah," but no one claims to be one.

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TLDR #25 - Monsters

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Kim Correa loves the online game DayZ, which lets you interact with other humans during a zombie apocalypse. DayZ's appeal is that it allows weird, spontaneous interactions between players. It also allows really terrible ones. Kim talks about her experience of being raped in a virtual world -- something she doesn't quite know what to do with. We also talk to writer Julian Dibbel, who wrote about how one online community dealt with a virtual rape back in 1993.

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TLDR #24 - The Million Dollar Homepage

Monday, May 05, 2014

In 2005, Alex Tew was a 21-year-old entrepreneur who wanted to make a million dollars before college. The only problem was he had literally nothing of value to sell. So he made The Million Dollar Homepage -- possibly the most ambitiously garish website ever created.

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TLDR #23 - A Bitcoin Story for People Who Don't Care About Bitcoin

Sunday, April 27, 2014

When Wired reporter Andy Greenberg read Newsweek's cover story claiming to have found mysterious Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto, he was disappointed. Not so much that the mystery had been solved, but that the answer to the search was not all that interesting. But then, as the Newsweek started getting picked apart, he got a tip about another possible Bitcoin creator: a very ill, very brilliant cryptographer named Hal Finney. 

Andy Greenberg is the author of This Machine Kills Secrets: How WikiLeakers, Cypherpunks, and Hacktivists Aim to Free the World's Information.

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

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Earlier this week, a commenter named Y. Woodman Brown posted his online passwords in the Washington Post comments section to show just how little his online security mattered to him. It was quickly picked up by the press as an example of online security hubris. Naturally, we had to find him. Alex talks to Y. Woodman Brown and the person who hijacked his Twitter account after the passwords were posted.

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

Friday, April 18, 2014

Earlier this week, a commenter named Y. Woodman Brown posted his online passwords in the Washington Post comments section to show just how little his online security mattered to him. It was quickly picked up by the press as an example of online security hubris. Naturally, we had to find him. Alex talks to Y. Woodman Brown and the person who hijacked his Twitter account after the passwords were posted.

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TLDR #21 - There Is No Such Thing As Silence

Sunday, April 13, 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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TLDR #20 - Silence

Monday, April 07, 2014

A band called Vulfpeck has asked fans to stream an entire album of silence on Spotify while they sleep, so the band can use the royalties to tour without charging for their shows. So far, the scheme has worked. We talk to Vulfpeck's Jack Stratton about hustling as a musician on the internet.

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TLDR #18 - The Army's Robot Recruiter

Monday, March 10, 2014

Sgt. Star is the army’s robot. Specifically, he’s a chatbot designed to influence potential recruits to enlist in the US Army. So how do we feel about that? Alex talks to the Army and a reporter who's covered recruitment abuses to figure out if we're better or worse off for having a Siri who can talk us into going to war.

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TLDR #17 - Hey, Guess What? I Found Truth For Us

Monday, March 03, 2014

Last fall, TLDR covered a bunch of hoaxes. Some we liked, most we didn't. On this episode, we talk to Paulo Ordoveza and Adrienne LaFrance, a couple of people who have devoted themselves to trying to debunk the innumerable falsehoods flying around the internet.

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TLDR #16 - *Win a Million Dollar Mansion From Your HOME COMPUTER*

Sunday, February 23, 2014

"Sweepers" are people who spend their free time entering hundreds of online sweepstakes -- the contests most of us skip because we're sure they're all scams. It turns out, we're wrong. Some people win big. Reporter Laura Mayer takes us into the online sweepstakes universe.

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TLDR #15 - Internet Time

Monday, February 17, 2014

In 1998 Swatch tried to completely reinvent our concept of time. Swatch Internet Time (or .beat time) would have been a new way to conceive of moments. There'd be no time zones, and also, no hours, minutes, or seconds. PJ talks to Gizmodo's Eric Limer and Swatch Creative Director Carlo Giordanetti about Swatch's plan to create time's version of Esperanto.

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TLDR #14 - The Knowledge

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Every year, a small group of sports fans scattered across the U.S. play a game called "Last Man." The goal is to be the last person in America to find out who won the Super Bowl. TLDR Sports reporter Lisa Pollak followed the game this year, and found out just how hard information was to avoid in the internet age.

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TLDR #13 - Managing a Monster

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Slender Man is the internet's monster - the subject of countless remixes, tributes, and parodies. He's so ubiquitous he feels like he's been around for ages, like folklore. But Slender Man has an owner and a point of origin. Alex talks to Eric Knudsen, the creator of Slender Man.

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TLDR #12 - Hunting For YouTube's Saddest Comments

Sunday, January 26, 2014

YouTube's infamous for having one of the worst comment sections on the internet. There's no reason to ever read them. Unless you’re writer & filmmaker Mark Slutsky. Mark spends hours scouring the comments section on YouTube, and occasionally, scattered in the dross, he finds small poignant stories for his site Sad Youtube.

 

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TLDR #11 - RIP Vile Rat

Thursday, January 16, 2014

This episode of TLDR contains some explicit language.

On September 11th, 2012, gunmen attacked two American compounds in Benghazi, Libya, killing four Americans. Sean Smith, one of the four killed in the attack, was an IT manager in the real world, but online, he was Vile Rat, a hugely influential diplomat in the video game Eve Online. Alex talks to Sean's friend Alex "The Mittani" Gianturco about who Sean was both in Eve and in the real world.

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TLDR #10 - One Hundred Songs In a Day

Thursday, January 09, 2014

One way to make money making music online is the boring way. Write one song that does incredibly well and live off the royalties for the rest of your life.

Matt Farley is a musician who’s gone a different route. He's written over 14,000 songs and he makes a tiny bit of money each time someone plays one on Spotify or iTunes. PJ visited Matt at his home recording studio to see how it all works.

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