Thursday, April 21, 2005

From Aaron Swartz: articles: the finest of the short nonfiction form (Aaron Swartz: The Weblog)

Aaron describes it:
I love magazine articles. When done well, they combine elegant writing with a compelling story and educational conent. However, it’s impossible to subscribe to every magazine and there’s no easy way to find the best of the lot.

For the past four months I have been posting my favorite magazine articles to a new website. When the articles aren’t available online, I’ve scanned them in and OCRed them. When they’re not available for free, I’ve made a copy available. (And, naturally, all items are archived in case of linkrot.) The result is a wide-ranging collection of excellent writing, ranging from how textbooks are made to interviews with men from the Rwandan genocide.

The site is articles: the finest of the short nonfiction form (Atom, RSS 2.0). I’ll continue posting articles as I find them but I hope that the majority will be submitted by readers like you. If you come across an especially wonderful magazine article (or already have), please tell me about it.

I hope you enjoy the site. I’d love your feedback. Tell your friends.
Attention.xml is a possible solution for a problem that I suffer from...

Developers Wiki - attention.xml
Attention.XML is an open standard, built on open source that helps you keep track of what you've read, what you're spending time on, and what you should be paying attention to.

Problem Statement
* How many sources of information must you keep up with?
* Tired of clicking the same link from a dozen different blogs?
* RSS readers collect updates, but with so many unread items, how do you know which to read first?
Attention.XML is designed to to solve these problems and enable a whole new class of blog and feed related applications.
MusicBrainz: AboutMusicBrainz

MusicBrainz is a user-maintained community music metadatabase. Music metadata is information such as the ArtistName, the AlbumTitle, and the list of tracks that appear on an album. MusicBrainz collects this information about music and makes it available to the public so that music players can retrieve information about the music that is playing. For instance, most audio CDs do not contain the name of the artist, album, or a listing of the tracks. A music player can use the digital characteristics of an audio CD to look up the correct metadata and show it to the user during playback.

MusicBrainz also takes this concept one step further in applying it to digital audio files like MP3 files and Ogg Vorbis files. The metadata contained in these files is often incorrect or missing altogether. If this data is not present or correct, it makes it difficult for users to find the music they wish to play. Many MP3 lovers have a huge collection of MP3 files but often have a hard time finding the music to which they want to listen. The MusicBrainz solutions for this are the WindowsTagger, iEatBrainz, and the PicardTagger--Windows, MacOS X, and Python applications that use AcousticFingerprints (TRMs) to semi-automatically identify tracks in your music collection and then write consistent and accurate metadata to your music files

Sunday, April 17, 2005
Have I mentioned how great is? No? Well, it's great.

What is it? I'll let them explain.

» is a social bookmarks manager. It allows you to easily add web pages you like to your personal collection of links, to categorize those sites with keywords, and to share your collection not only among your own browsers and machines, but also with others.

» Once you've registered for the service, you add a simple bookmarklet to your browser. When you find a web page you'd like to add to your list, you simply select the bookmarklet, and you'll be asked for information about the page. You can add descriptive terms to group similar links together and add notes for yourself or for others.

» You can access your list of links from any web browser. Your links are shown to you with those you've added most recently at the top. In addition to viewing by date, you can also view all links with a specific keywords (you define your own keywords as you add the links), or search your links for keywords.

» What makes a social system is its ability to let you see the links that others have collected, as well as showing you who else has bookmarked a specific site. You can also view the links collected by others, and subscribe to the links of people whose lists you find interesting.
Here's my bookmarks. So far I use it primarily while doing late night research at home on one of my many computers (which are OS X, Linux, and WinXP), so I can later access the good stuff I find when I'm at work on one of my company's many computers (almost entirely Windows).
200 new features in Mac OS X 10.4

The new version of Mac OS X, 10.4 (codename Tiger) will be released Friday April 29. (Expect long midnight lines at Apple stores everywhere.) What's new? Check the link.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

This is way cool! From BoingBoing....

NIN's Trent Reznor releases song as GarageBand file
Xeni Jardin:
On, Trent Reznor is offering a complete mix of a song from the forthcoming Nine Inch Nails album as a Garageband 2.0 file. The CD/vinyl is due out on May 3. Snip from the README:

"For quite some time I've been interested in the idea of allowing you the ability to tinker around with my tracks - to create remixes, experiment, embellish or destroy what's there. I tried a few years ago to do this in shockwave with very limited results. After spending some quality time sitting in hotel rooms on a press tour, it dawned on me that the technology now exists and is already in the hands of some of you. I got to work experimenting and came up with something I think you'll enjoy. What I'm giving you in this file is the actual multi-track audio session for "the hand that feeds" in GarageBand format. This is the entire thing bounced over from the actual Pro Tools session we recorded it into. I imported and converted the tracks into AppleLoop format so the size would be reasonable and the tempo flexible."

Link to, and link to 70MB *.sit download (Thanks, Mike) [Boing Boing]
For some reason, it's taken me almost a year to encounter GapingVoid's "How To Be Creative". Lots of this stuff resonates. Here's a sample:
28. Power is never given. Power is taken.

People who are "ready" give off a different vibe than people who aren't. Animals can smell fear; maybe that's it.

The minute you become ready is the the minute you stop dreaming. Suddenly it's no longer about "becoming". Suddenly it's about "doing".

You don't get the dream job because you walk into the editor's office for the first time and go, "Hi, I would really love to be a sports writer one day, please."

You get the job because you walk into the editor's office and go, "Hi, I'm the best frickin' sports writer on the planet." And somehow the editor can tell you aren't lying, either.

You didn't go in there, asking the editor to give you power. You went in there and politely informed the editor that you already have the power. That's what being "ready" means. That's what "taking power" means.

Not needing anything from another person in order to be the best in the world.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Ah, Maria McKee... RHAPSODY Link.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Happy Birthday Ryan! Here's a shiny new blog just for you!
Sascha wrote a very good piece on framing Terry by way of a book by George Lakoff.
Here is another way to make a link to Steven Brust. (He's so great, he deserves two.)
Look, here's a link to Steven Brust.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Hot Hot Heat "Get in or get out" - RHAPSODY Link - reminds me of seeing Madness at The Firehouse. Or was it some other band some other place?

Sunday, April 03, 2005

The Jayhawks "Crowded In The Wings" (RHAPSODY Link) is one of 10 absolutely perfect songs on an absolutely perfect album, Hollywood Town Hall.
John the Revelator - RHAPSODY Link Not what most people expect when they think of John Mellencamp.

For those of you who don't know me - which is presumably almost everyone in the world and no one reading this blog - if you were to ask me "who's your favorite musician?" and only let me answer with one person or group, I've gotta go with John. And for the record, Uh-huh may be one of the best records ever made. (Yeah, I could tell you about Sgt Pepper and all the usual suspects, but what's the point of telling you about those? You already know.)

Arg! I just noticed Rhapsody doesn't have the closing song on Uh-huh, Golden Gates! Oh, that's just wrong. Wrong, wrong, wrong. You HAVE to close the album with that song. Well, you know how to find it....