Update on IBM’s knowledgeable Watson from Bloomberg:
Cool minimal promo for On the Verge:
I co-founded Udacity to bring the very best of higher education to everyone worldwide. With Georgia Tech, we have a partner whose computer science program is among the best in the world! And equally importantly, with AT&T, we partner with a Fortune-500 company which is relentlessly innovating in the space of digital access to information. This triumvirate of industry and academia is now teaming up to use 21st Century MOOC technology to level the playing field in computer science education. And while the degree rightfully comes with a tuition fee — after all, to achieve the very best in online education we will provide support services — the bare content will be available free of charge, available for anyone eager to learn. We are also launching non-credit certificates at a much reduced price point, to give a path to those who don’t care about Georgia Tech credit or degrees, but still want their learning results certified.
60 Minutes did a nice profile on Bill Gates, and his more recent philanthropy. Driven as ever, but this time to help invent and back the technologies that will help cure.
Char-Broil is amazing. I’ve been filming on a series for them, and the awesome part about the job is the food. Really is a great grill, and one I plan to purchase. I’ve been sold. They use infrared technology to grill at higher temperatures, that help capture the moisture in both meat and veggies.
Here is one of the videos from the series, more to come:
_why has a great body of art and code.
One of my favorite articles profiles the artist, and tech teacher, but also touches on the Ruby programming community at large.
“We need some instant results to give absolute beginners confidence. Simple methods for sending an email, reading a Web page, playing music,” he wrote. Moreover, novice programmers—especially kids—needed that ecstatic moment where they understand that they are controlling the computer, that programming ensures that the computer answers to them.
IBM transcending mediums, storytelling with atoms. Great video.
And here is the instant classic. IBM’s style is so retro-future, always, I like it.
I created a new blog on Tumblr to focus on more technically detailed and oriented posts, while keeping this blog more general. Objective Tech will document my journey to becoming a web developer in greater detail, where I will discuss the various technologies I’m using and the resources I’m learning to do so.
You can visit the blog at objectivetech.tumblr.com
Quartz has a good overview on how Netflix continues to grow while giving some context to comparing it to HBO, the Netflix of old media.
“The goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us,” Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer, put it recently.
Currently I’m reading 10 Print. Well actually the full name of the book is 10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10. And it is awesome. The book was written in the form of a private wiki between the ten authors, which makes it an interesting experiment for a book of this nature in the first place. But the book feels unified and is a compelling read for those interested in the aesthetics of code and the history of software in general. The greatest surprise for me is that this book is really a history book that doesn’t feel like a history book, and every chapter is unique and takes a different perspective on the single line of code and relating it to the larger themes of software studies in general.
10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10
The line of code creates the pattern shown on the cover of the book, as seen below. This is a basic breakdown of the single line of the code the book analyzes, although it the book does so much more than talk about syntax, but it still interesting to talk about the simple syntax of this one line program as well.
So following the logic of the basic program and how it operates, the computer will ‘randomly’ (not truly random) assign the CHR$ function either the number 205 or 206 (various computer languages handel decimals, or floating point numbers, in a variety of ways). And depending whether 205 or 206 is selected determines whether the \ or the / characters get chosen. And since the line of code is in an endless loop it creates a pattern animating at printing one of the two characters to the screen at a time as seen in the video below.
You can download the book in PDF format on the book’s website.
Personally I try to read all of my books originally designed for print in PDF format if possible, so kudos for the authors for giving the reader that option as the book has a beautiful layout that would be lost in formats such as the Kindle. Because it is a PDF, you have all of the advantages of it being digital, such as searchable text, with the beauty of the original design.