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  • seandodson 3:24 pm on October 29, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blog, , , , press gazette   

    If you want to get ahead in journalism then get a blog. Useful article by Dominic Ponsford of Press Gazette on how setting up on your own often the first step towards a future career.

  • seandodson 1:38 pm on April 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , blog, bookmarks, , g20, g20 climate camp, , , wikicity   

    Bookmarks for April 06 

    Some quite shocking video footage of police aggression at the Climate Camp, held in Bishopgate in London last week. Admittedly this is taken from the partisan Indymedia network, but, even so, the most telling thing about it is that none of the protesters appear to be throwing punches or stones at the police – even though they are being charged with shields and beaten with batons. Seen from this angle, the attack appears unprovoked.

    + Richard MacManus of the New York Times looks at the latest attempt to map a city using mobile phones. Mentions MIT’s WikiCity ambitious open source mapping project. Nice visualisations of urban data.

    + Music streaming: enjoy it while you can, says the Guardian’s Chris Salmon.

    + Michal Migursk: the end of online monoculture. Excellent critique of “recommender” systems (LastFM, Amazon et al) that help us chart the web.

    + Why Amsterdam is becoming both a greener and a smarter city.

    + Cathy Curtis: How the web made me a better copywriter

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  • seandodson 5:25 pm on August 4, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blog, , diary, , , , samuel peyps, , spanish civil war,   

    George Orwell diaries: an entry a day keeps the thought police at bay 

    Looking forward to the start of the Orwell Diaries this Saturday (August 09). To celebrate the 70th anniversary of the start of them, the Orwell Prize along with the Media Standards Trust and Political Quarterly have decided to publish the entries in blog form. Each entry will be published exactly 70 years on from the day they were written.

    Taking an obvious cue from Phil Gyford’s wonderful Pepys Diary, each entry will be published as if it were a blog . In this case, exactly 70 years after it was written. I do hope that the annoation is as good as Gyford’s is.

    The diaries open while Orwell was recuperating in Morocco after fighting in the Spanish Civil War. In the next few weeks you will be able to read about his return to the UK and “his opinions on the descent of Europe into war in real time. The diaries end in 1942, three years into the conflict.”

    An introduction on the site reads:

    “What impression of Orwell will emerge? From his domestic diaries it may be a largely unknown Orwell, whose great curiosity is focused on plants, animals, woodwork, and – above all – how many eggs his chickens have laid. From his political diaries (from 7th September), it may be the Orwell whose political observations and critical thinking have enthralled and inspired generations since his death in 1950. Whether writing about the Spanish Civil War or sloe gin, geraniums or Germany, Orwell’s perceptive eye and rebellion against the ‘gramophone mind’ he so despised are obvious.”

    • thespigot 5:29 pm on August 4, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      That is the coolest Animal Farm cover I’ve ever seen.

    • seandodson 9:01 pm on August 4, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      It’s great isn’t it. The cover illustration is by Paul Hogarth, the 1967 edition I think. You can buy a copy here. Interestingly, Hogarth also fought in the Spanish Civil War for the International Brigade.

    • seandodson 11:48 am on August 5, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Er, actually Orwell fought with the POUM and not the International Brigade (thanks Will). The International Brigade were connected with Moscow.

  • seandodson 12:05 am on July 22, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blog, broadcast, code, , democracy, , , open democracy, , , programming, renaissance,   

    Douglas Rushkoff: the next renaissance belongs to the network 

    Douglas Rushkoff’s recent speech on the potential for a type of “open source democracy” is worthy of recommendation. It is a really good speech. He believes that the recent advances in network technology offer something of a new renaissance. He gave this keynote last week at the Personal Democracy Forum in New York. It has such an effect that the whole organisation subsequently changed its name to the Participatory Democracy Forum.

    Here’s a digest of his argument:

    1. Personal democracy is an oxymoron. Democracy is about others.

    2. But since the renaissance, much has been focused on the individual. This has proved one of the main obstacles towards a true democracy.

    3. Because once we understood ourselves as individuals, we understood ourselves as having rights. The Rights of Man. A right to property. The right to personal freedom.

    4. But paradoxically, this led to more centralised authority: as individuals become concerned with their personal stakes, their former power as a collective moves to central authorities: divide and conquer.

    5. The media of the renaissance: the printing press (and by extension all broadcast media) are very good at perpetuating the myth of the self – individual interest.

    The next renaissance (if there is one)—the phenomenon we’re talking about … is not about the individual at all, but about the networked group. The possibility for collective action. The technologies we’re using—the biases of these media—cede central authority to decentralized groups. Instead of moving power to the center, they tend to move power to the edges. Instead of creating value from the center—like a centrally issued currency—the network creates value from the periphery.

    I concur with much of this … but Rushkoff offers a wise kicker: it is the art of programming – not writing or blogging – that ushers in this new epoch …

    “Writing is not the capability being offered us by these tools at all. The capability is programming—which almost none of us really know how to do. We simply use the programs that have been made for us, and enter our blog text in the appropriate box on the screen. Nothing against the strides made by citizen bloggers and journalists, but big deal. Let them eat blog.”

  • seandodson 10:46 am on March 20, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blog, , , encyclopedia of life, eol, , , wiki,   

    Is everyone here? Good, then we’ll begin 

    Clay Shirky

    Originally uploaded by Joi

    NYU’s Clay Shirky was in London this week to promote his new book Here Come’s Everybody. I was lucky enough to interview him on Monday and my efforts published in today’s Technology Guardian.

    Shirky talks about how the nature of organisation is evolving because of cheap access to communications technology. I also mention the launch of the Encyclopedia of Life, a thoroughly ambitious attempt to document the 1.8m species on the planet using a similar organistational structre to Wikipedia

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