Using Data to Find Bin Laden

Where they thought he was and where he was. Great piece — Geographers Had Predicted Osama’s Possible Whereabouts – ScienceInsider (thanks Daily Kos- Geographers predict Osama’s location) which tells the story of Thomas Gillespie, a UCLA geographer who, along with colleague John Agnew and a class of undergraduates, authored a 2009 paper predicting the terrorist’s […]

Osama bin Laden’s Death on Twitter

(Updated timeline to include subsequent accounts) There was, by all accounts, no Internet or phone access to Bin Laden’s compound. Had there been, might he have known about the attack in advance from social media? This depends on what was being said on twitter, and when. Although lots of people in Pakistan are on Facebook, […]

The Missed Call: The Decade’s Zeitgeist?

By Jeremy Wagstaff (this is a longer version of an upcoming syndicated column.) When people look back at the last decade for a technology zeitgeist they may choose SMS, or the iPod, or maybe even Facebook. Me? I’d choose the cellphone call that rings, briefly, and then is silent. It’s one of those social phenomena […]

Time to Give the Telephone Back to the Cellphone?

Was interviewing a guy intimately involved in the mobile phone industry the other day, and we were comparing the various features of our sophisticated smartphones, when he suddenly leaned over and said, “Off the record, but this is my favorite phone.” And he showed me this: Nokia 1100, photo Mobile Phones UK The Nokia 1100, […]

Don’t Turn the Poppy Into a Stick

Nothing to do with technology this, but it is to do with racism, multiculturalism, and my old country, Britain. A recent piece by Carol Gould of FrontPage magazine: The First Step to Britishness Is Your Poppy The poppy is a symbol of the terrible loss of life in World War I in the fields of […]

The Digital Fallout Of Journalistic Plagiarism and Fakery

How do you correct the Internet? All these reports of plagiarism and fakery in U.S. journalism — at least 10, according to the New York Times — raise a question I haven’t seen addressed elsewhere. What should newspapers and other publications which have carried the reports do about setting the record straight? A USA Today […]

Beware The Granny Spammer

Here’s a different take on the spam wars: the granny spammer. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution tells the story of Flo Fox, a graying grandmother in a “What Would Jesus Do?” T-shirt who uses a couple of shopworn computers to out millions of junk e-mails for merchandise ranging from land in Belize to blessed coins. What I […]

Column: Under the Wire

UNDER THE WIRE The Latest Software and Hardware Upgrades, Plug-Ins and Add-Ons from the 5 June 2003 of edition of the Far Eastern Economic Review , (c) 2003, Dow Jones & Company, Inc. History Scanned The past is being digitized — fast. The ProQuest Historical Newspapers program has just finished scanning more than a century […]