Social Media and Politics: Truthiness and Astroturfing

By Jeremy Wagstaff (this is a column I wrote back in November. I’m repeating it here because of connections to astroturing in the HBGary/Anonymous case.) Just how social is social media? By which I mean: Can we trust it as a measure of what people think, what they may buy, how they may vote? Or …

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Social Media and Politics: Truthiness and Astroturfing

(This is a longer version of my syndicated newspaper column) By Jeremy Wagstaff Just how social is social media? By which I mean: Can we trust it as a measure of what people think, what they may buy, how they may vote? Or is it as easy a place to manipulate as the real world? …

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Afghanistan’s TV Phone Users Offer a Lesson

By Jeremy Wagstaff There’s something I notice amid all the dust, drudgery and danger of Kabul life: the cellphone TVs. No guard booth—and there are lots of them—is complete without a little cellphone sitting on its side, pumping out some surprisingly clear picture of a TV show. This evening at one hostelry the guard, AK-47 …

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links for 2008-09-15

About GroupLens | GroupLens Research GroupLens is a research lab in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota. We conduct research in several areas (tags: minnesota collaboration recommendations social) iRider Web Browser Product Overview – Wymea Bay a browser that’s been doing all this stuff the others are starting to …

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Clock Shock

For those of you who can’t get out of bed in the morning, the alarm clock that outwits you is finally here. I mentioned Clocky in a WSJ column more than a year ago in talking about the problems of ignored alarms: Efforts to overcome this problem have been inventive, but rarely successful, says Gauri …

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How To Infect An Airport

Could it be possible to use Radio Frequency ID tags, or RFID, to transmit viruses? Some researchers reckon so. Unstrung reports that a paper presented at the Pervasive Computing and Communications Conference in Pisa, Italy, the researchers from Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, led by Andrew Tanenbaum, show just how susceptible radio-frequency tags may be to malware. …

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The End of Airport WiFi?

An interesting battle is going on in Boston over airport WiFi. If one side wins it may spell the end to WiFi in airports — at least those not operated by the airport itself. The Boston Globe reports that Logan International Airport officials’ ongoing quest to ban airline lounges from offering passengers free WiFi Internet services …

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Biometrics Close To The Bone

Further to my column about fingerprint biometric scanners (subscription only ), I’ve heard from  a company working on a different kind of biometric security: Via the bone. Last week, Mass.-based RSA Security Inc. (the guys who make the SecurID number tag, called ‘a two-factor user authentication system’ in the jargon) announced a joint research collaboration with …

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How To Scoop The U.S. Press Corps

Perhaps we journalists need better tools to find out the stories we’re looking for. According to Ed Cone, a posting on an aviation website late on Monday may have been the first evidence of the Kerry/Edwards tie-up: A poster to the US Airways forum called ‘aerosmith’ said he/she had spotted John Kerry’s plane in a …

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