Visualizing Bicycles, Making Budapest Bubble with Data

We routinely see visualizations of air or auto traffic, but the lowly bicycle remains off the grid. So, from the perspective of the data itself, a visualization of bike movement is already getting interesting. What’s nice about this project by Kitchen Budapest and UrbanCyclr, though, is that the visualization itself is unexpected. So many data visualizations fall into the same patterns that you may, as I did, have an immediate preconception of what this project would look like. Instead, the map of the city itself bubbles and bulges. Whether this is more effective is up for debate, but it’s a …

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anonymous

MegaUpload Raided; Do You Feel Your Future as a Creator is Brighter Yet?

Anonymous 2. And, uh, jeez, if you like uptime, you don’t want to annoy Anonymous. (CC-BY-SA) liryon. Well, that happened. It’s a surreal episode that seems not to have any clear winners, as the US government on one side and hackers on the other face off over what is and isn’t freedom online. The mystery is, what will be the long-term outcome for people making content – or, for that matter, do these kinds of dramatics even really have any logic in your work at all? While the music tech industry was holed away in the palm tree-lined walls of …

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sopa

Opponents of US SOPA Legislation Gaining Momentum on Blackout Day; Musicians Have a Stake

Photo (CC-BY-NC-SA) Dawn Loh. It’s been called, bluntly, “Internet censorship” by opponents. And now, US legislation that claims to curb piracy faces mounting challenges as that opposition grows, particularly as the White House warns it will block the bills. Today, even as a flood of delightful new music toys become available, it’s worth pausing to consider why this matters – and, if you vote in the United States, to call your Senators and Representatives (again, if needed). Many of us who create music believe the dynamic, user-driven nature of the Web is our best chance at a bright future. Free …

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Projection Mapping for a Cause: Obscura’s Cube of CO2

CO2 Cube from Obscura Digital on Vimeo. It’s an older project, but no less timely: speaking of Obscura Digital’s work, they’ve also employed projection as a way to illustrate in tangible terms a serious issue. You’ll hear climate scientists speak in terms of metric tons of emissions. But because we can’t see those emissions, and because most people really don’t think about volumes of carbon dioxide (hardly something you pick up at the grocery), it’s tough to wrap your head around what that means. That is, it’s tough until you see the volume. Assuming sea level, you get a cube …

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Projection Mapping for a Cause: Obscura's Cube of CO2

CO2 Cube from Obscura Digital on Vimeo. It’s an older project, but no less timely: speaking of Obscura Digital’s work, they’ve also employed projection as a way to illustrate in tangible terms a serious issue. You’ll hear climate scientists speak in terms of metric tons of emissions. But because we can’t see those emissions, and because most people really don’t think about volumes of carbon dioxide (hardly something you pick up at the grocery), it’s tough to wrap your head around what that means. That is, it’s tough until you see the volume. Assuming sea level, you get a cube …

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wtf

Opinion: US Internet Censorship Could Cripple Online Music Web; Where to Find Out More, Where to Act

If you haven’t been following the (excellent) coverage elsewhere, just how bad is the “Firewall of the United States,” the draconian Internet dystopia misguided legislation in the US proposes to create? That legislation is so vague, so far-reaching, so poorly-designed, that it potentially threatens all kinds of sites musicians regularly use. And little wonder: a backwards legislation process in the US has locked out the very Internet and tech companies that have until now been glimmers of hope in a stagnant US economy. The crux of this issue is the impact on legal sites, and democracy and speech online. For …

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Music Made with Bees, Free Sample Set, and Why You Should Care

I’m late in posting this, but it’s too good to pass up – our friend Troels Folmann sends us his latest sound design experiment, this time with bees. Better audio: Bees by Tonehammer Specs: 200-230 wing flaps per second (hence the tone) Top speed: 15 mph. Compound eyes with thousands of tiny lenses plus simple eyes. A life form with 20,000 known species, on which human life depends Availability: with our protection, a long, long time. Without, we’re toast. There’s also a free bee sample set for use with Kontakt or (via WAV) any other tool. [Download link, .rar ] …

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EFF, in Response to ASCAP, Says They Want to Find Ways of Getting Artists Paid

What’s the future of musician income? Crispin guitarist AJ looks on. Photo (CC-BY-ND) billaday/Bill Selak. An ASCAP Political Action Committee fundraising letter that seeks to vilify advocacy positions of organizations like Creative Commons has been circulating the Web. As I noted in a separate story, it’s not exactly news that ASCAP has taken issue with the licenses Creative Commons advocates. Now, however, ASCAP’s legislative advocacy arm also argues in the letter that the advocacy organization Electronic Frontier Foundation is also an enemy of artists getting paid. The EFF hasn’t made a public statement about the issue, but in a response …

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ASCAP Attacks Creative Commons, Advocacy Groups as Anti-Copyright, Anti-Artist

Vintage image (CC-BY-SA) Ioan Sameli, as licensed by us pinko commies at CDM. An ASCAP legislative fundraising letter revealed last week that the American performing rights organization is invoking fears of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Public Knowledge, and Creative Commons in order to raise money. ASCAP appears to be repeating, now in the more heated language of fundraising, arguments it has had with the Creative Commons license in the past. For its part, Creative Commons insists most of its licenses don’t preclude performing rights bodies like ASCAP from collecting funds. In the letter, sent on behalf of ASCAP’s Political Action …

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Updated: MPEG LA Pool Planning to Torpedo OGG Theora, Says Jobs

RichardL notes some potentially major news this afternoon. Shortly after my post, Steve Jobs himself reportedly answered an open letter written by free software advocate Hugo Roy. Hugo’s letter contained suggestions about whether a standardized unencumbered video codec needed to accompany the video tag in order to be truly “open.” The original post, on “hugo’s blog”: Open Letter to Steve Jobs Jobs’ response, as quoted by that blog: From: Steve Jobs To: Hugo Roy Subject: Re:Open letter to Steve Jobs: Thoughts on Flash Date 30/04/2010 15:21:17 All video codecs are covered by patents. A patent pool is being assembled to …

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