Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
March 19, 2011 2:47 PM

Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #39

Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, the author of Complete Web Monitoring and Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks), Hugh McGuire (The Book Oven, LibriVox, iambik, Media Hacks) and I decided that every week or so the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we're recommending to one another:

  • Hidden In Plain View - Stories, Etc.... "In World War II, the Army Corps of Engineers needed to hide an airplane factory in plain sight in Burbank, California. They went to some pretty serious lengths to create a realistic cover for their factory, even going so far as to pay people to walk around above it. This site has some shots of the cover-up from the 1940s. In an era where everyone has access to detailed satellite imagery, it's fascinating to see what we did to hide from above 70 years ago." (Alistair for Hugh).
  • The Algorithm That Beats Your Bank Manager - Forbes. "Maybe we don't need better regulations. Maybe we just need to get the humans out of the process entirely. The US bank collapse was triggered by complex bundling of risks, and a bloody-minded conviction that house prices couldn't fall. Other countries with stricter regulations didn't face the same challenges. But with thousands of data points about potential borrowers, maybe lenders can make smarter decisions about who to lend to. This Forbes piece looks at Wonga, a lender that rejects 70 percent of applicants -- but makes money on those it approves, because it knows more about them. Perhaps your next loan will depend as much on your Facebook wall and your Twitter feed as on your credit history." (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Q. and A. on the Nuclear Crisis in Japan - The New York Times. "'May you live in interesting times,' is (supposedly) an ancient Chinese curse. Well, we live in such times. The world seems like it's been turned upside down in the past few months: Northern Australia under water; protests, revolutions and counter revolutions in Egypt, Tunisa, Bharain, Lybia and elsewhere. Hundreds dead to an earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand. Unimaginable Tsunami in Japan. And then nuclear meltdown. For whatever reason, the nuclear meltdown is the news event that has most captivated my attention: what's going on now? Is it better today or worse? What's being done? Does it have a chance of succeeding? What's the worst case scenario? This NYTImes blog piece answered more of my questions than any other piece of journalism (though nothing beats Wikipedia for comprehensiveness). (Hugh for Alistair).
  • Just send the goddamn email - In Over Your Head. "Mitch hosts a podcast called Media Hacks (or, he used to) [Blogger's Note: I'm happy to keep it going - we just need a few people to confirm a date ;)], where a few of us get together and talk about the things that interest us. Julien Smith is one of the Hacks, and he swears like a sailor. For a loudmouth trouble-maker, though, he's sharp. I loved this post, because often in my life, I let some uncomfortable bit of communication simmer and get stale, until it terrifies me. And I should just send that goddamn email. No matter how uncomfortable it is, everything is always better when you just send the goddamn email. Suggestion: whatever that goddamn email is that you are avoiding sending: go send it now." (Hugh for Mitch).
  • The Digital Pileup - The New York Times. "The more data we use, the more tangible, physical resources we use up as well. It's something to think about, and this op-ed piece in The New York Times does a good job of waking us all up to the reality that even if you're just grabbing a song from iTunes and there's no more CD, plastic being used or a truck to ship it, it doesn't mean that there is no impact. Data centers are both costly to run and use up a tremendous amount of energy. Beyond that, storing data or having a need to reference old data is costly too. It all adds up. This piece will get you thinking differently about data, how we use it and how we store it, along with the cost and impact of it." (Mitch for Alistair).
  • YouTube Video of the Day: Mister Rogers Visits the Crayon Factory - Mashable. "I can get lost in YouTube for hours. One video leads you to another and the next thing you know you're watching videos you have not seen since you were a kid. As amazingly powerful as clips like this are, it's also fascinating that people have them, share them and put them out there. We're quickly learning that the Internet is one of the best archives in the world... much better than a dusty shelf in some television studio that no one has access to." (Mitch for Hugh).

Now it's your turn: in the comment section below pick one thing that you saw this week that inspired you and share it.

By Mitch Joel


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