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Archive for the ‘internet’ tag

Oct 23, 2019

Public Internet Access: Brief history

Posted by in categories: computing, disruptive technology, education, internet, open access, open source

Reader, Tamia Boyden asks this question:

In the 90s, how could we access the internet without WiFi?

This post began as an answer to that question at Quora. In the process of answering, I compiled this history of public, residential Internet access. Whether you lived through this fascinating social and technical upheaval or simply want to explore the roots of a booming social phenomenon, I hope you will find the timeline and evolution as interesting as I do.

I have included my answer to Tamia’s question, below. But first, let’s get a quick snapshot of the highlights. This short bullet-list focuses on technical milestones, but the history below, explains the context, social phenomenon and implications.

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Jul 14, 2017

Click Here for Happiness

Posted by in categories: biological, bionic, computing, electronics, entertainment, fun, internet, media & arts, mobile phones

Technology can be wonderful. But how do you keep track of yourself when technology allows you to be everywhere at once?

In this film Prof. Yair Amichai-Hamburger (director of the Research Center for Internet Psychology at the Sammy Ofer School of Communications) argues that even though technology allows us to reach out and connect more easily than ever before, if we don’t ever take a step back, we can lose track of our humanity in the process.

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Jun 2, 2017

A Net Neutrality Nightmare? / Part II (Future A to Z)

Posted by in categories: futurism, information science, internet, journalism, law, media & arts, software, strategy, supercomputing

The recent efforts to remove Net Neutrality have given many a sense of impending doom we are soon to face. What happens to an Internet without Net Neutrality? Advocates have a vision of the possible results — and it is quite the nightmare! In this segment of Future A to Z, The Galactic Public Archives takes a cheeky, yet compelling perspective on the issue.

Part 1 / Part 2

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May 25, 2017

Removing Net Neutrality: The Nightmare (Future A to Z)

Posted by in category: futurism

The recent efforts to remove Net Neutrality have given many a sense of impending doom we are soon to face. What happens to an Internet without Net Neutrality? Advocates have a vision of the possible results — and it is quite the nightmare! In this segment of Future A to Z, The Galactic Public Archives takes a cheeky, yet compelling perspective on the issue.

Part 1 / Part 2

Continue reading “Removing Net Neutrality: The Nightmare (Future A to Z)” »

Jul 21, 2015

We are data: the future of machine intelligence — By Douglas Coupland | Financial Times

Posted by in categories: big data, computing, economics, privacy

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I sometimes wonder, How much data am I generating? Meaning: how much data do I generate just sitting there in a chair, doing nothing except exist as a cell within any number of global spreadsheets and also as a mineable nugget lodged within global memory storage systems — inside the Cloud, I suppose. (Yay Cloud!)

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Jun 4, 2015

A New York State of Megabits — Susan Crawford | Backchannel

Posted by in categories: architecture, big data, business, economics, education, energy, information science, internet, moore's law

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So it was great to get back to New York and be able to report on what is called the“New NY Broadband Program.” It involves a $500 million expenditure to help ensure that New Yorkers across the state have access to current-generation Internet capacity. There’s lots of potential in the plan, targeted at providing every New Yorker with access to 100 megabit per second (Mbps) service (10 Mbps uploads) by the end of 2018. Because New York expects a 1:1 match from the private sector for each grant or loan it makes, that means the state hopes to be deploying at least $1 billion on high-speed Internet access infrastructure.

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Jun 2, 2015

The Arctic’s Internet Is So Expensive That People Mail the Web on USB Drives — Via Motherboard

Posted by in categories: business, computing, economics, finance, governance, hacking, policy, strategy

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“Canada’s domestic digital divide, with the North as its epicenter, has been a point of growing concern over the last several years. Much of the internet in the northernmost regions of the country is still beamed down by satellites, but a plan to link Europe and Asia with fiber optic cable via Nunavut is currently being negotiated by a Toronto-based company called Arctic Fibre.”

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Jan 2, 2014

The Future of the Internet!

Posted by in category: science

The Internet has clearly demonstrated the power of networked computing. You don’t need me to tell you that effects of the Internet’s emergence have been overwhelmingly pervasive. But the Internet is also very new and still evolving. So what is the future of this medium? How will it continue to shape our lives in the 2020s? 2030s? 2040s?

Let me know what you think! @cadelllast

Nov 20, 2012

Google’s 100,000 Stars & the Paradigmatic Disruption of Large-Scale Innovation Revisited

Posted by in categories: cosmology, general relativity, human trajectories, information science, physics, scientific freedom, space


The 100,000 Stars Google Chrome Galactic Visualization Experiment Thingy

So, Google has these things called Chrome Experiments, and they like, you know, do that. 100,000 Stars, their latest, simulates our immediate galactic zip code and provides detailed information on many of the massive nuclear fireballs nearby.


Zoom in & out of interactive galaxy, state, city, neighborhood, so to speak.

It’s humbling, beautiful, and awesome. Now, is 100, 000 Stars perfectly accurate and practical for anything other than having something pretty to look at and explore and educate and remind us of the enormity of our quaint little galaxy among the likely 170 billion others? Well, no — not really. But if you really feel the need to evaluate it that way, you are a unimaginative jerk and your life is without joy and awe and hope and wonder and you probably have irritable bowel syndrome. Deservedly.

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Oct 6, 2012

The decaying web and our disappearing history

Posted by in categories: information science, media & arts, philosophy

On January 28 2011, three days into the fierce protests that would eventually oust the Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, a Twitter user called Farrah posted a link to a picture that supposedly showed an armed man as he ran on a “rooftop during clashes between police and protesters in Suez”. I say supposedly, because both the tweet and the picture it linked to no longer exist. Instead they have been replaced with error messages that claim the message – and its contents – “doesn’t exist”.

Few things are more explicitly ephemeral than a Tweet. Yet it’s precisely this kind of ephemeral communication – a comment, a status update, sharing or disseminating a piece of media – that lies at the heart of much of modern history as it unfolds. It’s also a vital contemporary historical record that, unless we’re careful, we risk losing almost before we’ve been able to gauge its importance.

Consider a study published this September by Hany SalahEldeen and Michael L Nelson, two computer scientists at Old Dominion University. Snappily titled “Losing My Revolution: How Many Resources Shared on Social Media Have Been Lost?”, the paper took six seminal news events from the last few years – the H1N1 virus outbreak, Michael Jackson’s death, the Iranian elections and protests, Barack Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, the Egyptian revolution, and the Syrian uprising – and established a representative sample of tweets from Twitter’s entire corpus discussing each event specifically.

It then analysed the resources being linked to by these tweets, and whether these resources were still accessible, had been preserved in a digital archive, or had ceased to exist. The findings were striking: one year after an event, on average, about 11% of the online content referenced by social media had been lost and just 20% archived. What’s equally striking, moreover, is the steady continuation of this trend over time. After two and a half years, 27% had been lost and 41% archived.

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