James "Chaos" Gleick talks about the phase-change of life in the online age.
Something happened starting 10 years ago that was really exceptional. The speed of change of technology is different now. It's qualitatively different. It's disturbing. We can't always appreciate that because our memories are unreliable. Our attention spans seem to be shorter. We all feel this.
But something very much like it happened a century ago, when the world suddenly got electricity and telephones, and underwent a sudden and dramatic change in the size and topology of the globe. So, it's happened before...
It's still slightly surprising to people to remember that as recently as 1994 most people not only didn't have e-mail, but they didn't really know what e-mail was, and it didn't occur to them that they were ever going to have it.
I remember it all vividly, because I started an Internet company in the summer of 1993. And I remember talking to my friends about it, and people thought I was nuts.
I would talk to lawyers, and I would say: I think it's possible that in a while, maybe in a few decades, every law firm will be able to send e-mail, just as now they use the fax machine. And my lawyer friends would roll their eyes and humor me.
Every profession operates differently now, because the online world exists. Every profession, and it's still just getting started.
Neglected public payphones in New York City are being turned into “GuyFi” stations: a place where one can rub one out for the sake of “stress relief.” Annalee Newitz reports on the wank booths from a company named “Hot Octopus”… The company reported that at least 100 men used the booth on its opening day […]
You’d be forgiven for thinking the videocassette format long-dead, but it turns out that Betamax is still around. Sony is finally going to withdraw tapes from sale, bringing a 40-year story to an end. The last recorders were sold in 2002. ベータビデオカセットおよびマイクロMVカセットテープ出荷終了のお知らせ [Sony; via The Verge]
A leaked Comcast memo discloses that the company’s consumer data caps have nothing to do with network congestion, contrary to its public claims. The internet service provider has often complained (such as when lobbying against net neutrality) that it must impose limits on service to prevent network congestion. The argument suggests that these measures are […]
Plastic is so 2013. You don’t want to buy something only to throw it away or lose it and barely care. You like nice things and want to hang onto them. The Plazmatic lighter here is a high quality, high tech alternative to the typical cheap, plastic lighter you get at the old gas station. […]
Real engineers build things. Super cool engineers build things with their hands and fingers, like our engineering forefathers did. No idea where to even begin to do that? This step by step Arduino course is now 92% off and is going to get you up and running, from zero to hero, in no time. So […]
How do Google and YouTube really work? It turns out, Python kind of runs things around those parts. And with this bootcamp, you’ll get whipped into shape and ready to start programming yourself. Whether you’re a Python pro and just want to sharpen your skills, or a total tech newbie with little or no coding […]