The two-way path between government, politics, and private industry, densely shaded by lush money trees, is so well-worn it seems to have been carved by the finger of God, a well-known capitalist, long ago. And yet, fresh trade routes establish themselves all the time. David Plouffe, the man who successfully convinced a majority of the United States in 2008 that Barack Obama would change the country for the better, is now going to make the same argument for Uber, a service that seeks to deeply weave itself into the infrastructure of cities in order to make as much money as possible. Meanwhile, Kara Swisher notes, former Obama press [...]
The SketchFactor app, which is intended to provide users with warnings as to the location of "sketchy" neighborhoods, was launched last Friday to near-universal howls of protest. The most common complaint was one of racism. Among dozens: "White duo behind app to avoid 'sketchy' neighborhoods is shocked to hear it's racist," said The Raw Story; "Smiling Young White People Make App for Avoiding Black Neighborhoods," wrote Sam Biddle in Valleywag.
SketchFactor works like this: users can tag locations with their impressions of "sketchiness" determined according to the "Sketch Point Legend." In addition to crime, you can report a "Bizarre Discovery" or a "Strange Encounter." Visitors consulting a map [...]
And one from Congressman Jeff Duncan (R-SC):
Why do I want the App? So that I can pray for Israel as well as understand, as a policy maker, the magnanimity of the threats and the conflict.
Can you imagine living under this constant threat?…
This speaks to the existential threat that the people in Israel live with constantly.
Red Alert's creator is Kobi Snir, an Israeli developer who worked with the people behind Yo! to build an [...]
Do you remember PostSecret, that project where people mailed anonymous postcards with secrets written on them to be published in books and museum installations and websites and things like that? Well, San Francisco remembers, because there have been two high-profile app versions in the past few weeks: Whisper and now Secret.
Secret, which is impossible to find by searching for it in the App Store on your iPhone (try searching for "secret" and you'll come up with, like, "My Secret Diary" and "Best Windows 7 Secrets." If you want to download it, go to secret.ly on your phone browser. Good start to your relationship with this app), [...]
App updates seem to come in waves. One minute you've obsessively completed updates, the next minute, your folder or app store icon on your phone has a big red "22" badge on it. Around half of all updates are minor but useful bug fixes. Sometimes they're incredibly undersold security updates, a little trick Tumblr pulled this week when they realized that they were sending passwords in plain text. (No one really went crazy about this, surprisingly, because we live in password denial: "Some company that you exchange information with is going to reveal your password to someone else.") This week's app updates cluster revealed something more interesting: lots [...]
The first time you hear a very clear Chinese woman's voice say "Sou Sou!" in your living room while you are supposedly alone, it is natural to brush it off. There are so many things making noises all the time! The second time, weeks later, when you're sitting alone by the fireplace reading at midnight, is terrifying. At this point, it is natural to wonder if this is how Moses or Allah or Jesus or Neale Donald Walsch or Oral Roberts or Ted Nugent or Charles Manson felt, when they first heard voices telling them what to do. But what did "Sou Sou!" even mean? It seemed less like [...]
Everybody loves apps, experts say—you can tell because there is an app for everything, including the monitoring of your personal health. The problem is that once you're thinking about monitoring your personal health, you're well on the way to the grave. This depressing fact may be the reason why few Americans use such phone and tablet programs to keep track of what's all too evident from the creaking, coughing, groaning and "weird discharge" most people notice just fine without the danged smart phone beeping and whirring, from wherever it's hiding.
Nearly seven in 10 U.S. adults say they are tracking weight, diet, exercise routines or some medical [...]
NowThisNews was started a couple years ago as a "brand new video network built from scratch for people who get their news on mobile devices and through social streams." It was given five million dollars. Its early videos were short YouTube-style news bulletins; most of the old embeds seem to be gone. Now, a few PIVOTS later, the company is focusing on publishing news directly to apps, including Vine and Instagram. This concept—bypassing websites, going directly to other companies' channels—is something that a lot of people will start trying over the next year, because the internet is broken.
NowThisNews is also publishing directly to [...]
"Haystack provides a solution to a key market failure in popular parking areas: meter prices are too cheap, which results in excess demand."
A few other market failures, which have resulted in excess demand:
1. Space for your blanket at the park on a cool summer evening. 2. Seats on the bus during rush hour 3. Public housing. So cheap! 4. Walking space on the sidewalk, especially in those busy shopping neighborhoods 5. Snow removal 6. Clean water
This undercharging is ruining my overall User Experience. And frankly, Haystack's lack of a parking space derivatives function makes me think they're not serious about extracting capital from parking spaces. [...]
It seems worthwhile to revisit the idea of the universal reputation market, in light of Schrödinger's Satoshi Nakamoto. Is this man Satoshi, or isn't he? For now, he equally is and he definitely isn't the progenitor of Bitcoin. No one has yet elaborated a way to decide.
One way, of course, that we might discover if this person is Satoshi Nakamoto is through constant surveillance—both physical and digital. Would that be a good thing?
How do we know who people are? We have some definite if hackable systems, like social security numbers. Names are a problem; sometimes unique, often not. So people are who they say they are—except, more [...]
Delete These Apps From Your Phone! If You Feel Better And More Productive After You've Done That, You Should Take It As A Sign That You Need To Kill Yourself, Because Your Existence Is So Vacuous And Superficial That The Absence Or Presence Of Apps On Your Phone Has Any Sort Of Bearing On The Way You Interact With The World And Feel About Your Life. God, What A Useless Piece Of Shit You Are, App-Having Phone User. People Are Struggling At This Very Moment With The Near-Impossible Task Of Basic Human Survival And You've Got A Little Bit Of An Extra Spring In Your Step Because Your Phone Is A Few Apps Lighter? Seriously, Fill Your Tub With Water, Dunk Your Head In It Twice And Lift It Out Once. You Bring Dishonor To All Of Us, But Most Of All Yourself.
"For 2014, resolve to cleanse your cell phone of unnecessary apps just as you resolve to cut out carbs from your diet. Maybe you loved these apps once, maybe you hooked up with them because someone told you to, or maybe you don’t even remember how they came into your life. Doesn’t matter! The time has come to purge them from your system. We swear you’ll feel instantly lighter."
"Sean Glass, the owner of Win Records, was taken aback when he saw his overall score of 6 — and that more than one hookup labeled him #F—-dMeAndChuckedMe. 'I can’t believe people say that,' says Glass, 28. 'I’ve never f—– and chucked anybody. I’ve just had sex with girls without it turning into a relationship. And #GoneByMorning is not true. I’ve very rarely slept over at anyone’s apartment.'" —"Here's the app every single guy in NYC fears"
"Diego Pizzagalli spent a good chunk of 10 years at Harvard doing what most professors at elite institutions do: research. Specifically, research on depression. He's fMRI'd and EEG'd a lot of gray matter, but most of his work got stuck in the lab and never evolved into any real-world application. Then he developed something that was too good to let collect dust in the hallowed halls of academia: software that he says could help treat depression.
Now with the help of the Baltimore-based startup incubator Canterbury Road Partners, Pizzagalli is set to turn his lab invention into an app. MoodTune will be a series of simple games that when played [...]
Remember the hope and joy of the 2009 inauguration of President Barack Obama, the historic first Hawiian to become president of the mainland United States? People were so excited—especially black people, who seemed to see something special about the Harvard law school graduate's move to national politics. (White conservatives were, in turn, very suspicious about African-Americans managing to travel to D.C. for the 2009 ceremony, while other blacks trapped in flooded New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina only managed to lose their homes, drown or get shot down by white cops.)
Anyway, things will be a lot smoother this year, in Washington. For one thing, hardly anybody wants to go [...]
The Times has published its third or so major piece on the part-time and gig economy in nearly as many weeks—this one focussed on those employed by apps, commonly known as members of the "sharing economy." Predictably, the founder of a car-sharing marketplace that will be crushed by Uber, called RelayRides, describes it as "transformational.” And yet:
“On average, you’re going to make $7 per favor,” [Kelsey Cruse] Cruse explained, using the company’s euphemism for a delivery. “If you are running two favors in an hour, that’s $14 an hour. It’s pretty awesome.” She hadn’t yet racked up enough “favors” to earn that much consistently. So far [...]
In 1969, a psychologist named G. Harry McLaughlin published the results of a number of experiments he’d made on speed readers in the Journal of Reading. His fastest subject was Miss L., "a university graduate with an IQ of 140" who had taken a speed reading course and claimed to have achieved speeds of sixteen thousand words per minute "with complete comprehension." He hooked her up to the electro-oculograph, a device that measures eye movements, and let her rip.
Miss L. read Evelyn Waugh’s A Handful of Dust at 10,000 words per minute [...] When she was half way through I asked her for a recall [...] Miss L. recalled [...]
Be the change you want to something in the something, right? Last night, a friend deleted Secret, the new app for… sharing secrets and I realized: oh, I could do that as well! These apps do not own me! (Yet.)
It's a fascinating experiment, and I'm curious about where it will go. But. Opening Secret was like walking onto a trading floor where a pack of goons were desperately displaying the contents of their wallets and/or underwear. It was like carrying a portal to a heinous world of male status anxiety. So much equity terror, so many tepid sexual fantasies unfulfilled. In the future, if I need someone [...]
"In olden days, people hoping to get their rocks off using the Internet had no choice but to try their luck on services like Match.com or OkCupid — which require them to fill out profiles, choose flattering photos, and spend hours crafting messages that likely went unread — or wade into the sketchy backwaters of Adult FriendFinder or Craigslist postings. "