An Oscar for Andy? by Tama Leaver [Antenna] – My first Antenna post looks at the possibility of a synthespian in the running for an acting Oscar: “On the back of the unexpected success of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the big news isn’t a planned sequel but rather a “a healthy seven-figure deal for Andy Serkis to reprise his role as lead ape Caesar” along with the announcement that 20th Century Fox will be mounting an Oscar campaign aimed at getting Serkis a long overdue nod for Best Supporting Actor. It’s significant, too, because we never see Andy Serkis directly in Rise; rather, Caesar was created by the meshing of Serkis’s visceral, physical acting and the state-of-the-art computer wizardry from Weta Digital. Whether you prefer the term virtual actor, synthespian (‘synthetic thespian’) or just performance capture, an Academy Award for Serkis would demonstrate a widening understanding of what ‘acting’ actually means.”
Salman Rushdie claims victory in Facebook name battle [BBC News ] – “Author Salman Rushdie says he has won a battle with Facebook over what to call himself on his profile page on the social network. Rushdie’s dispute with Facebook began after he asked to be allowed to use his middle name Salman – the one he is known by across the world. But Facebook, which has strict real name policies, had insisted on Ahmed – the novelist’s first name. Rushdie says Facebook has “buckled” after he began tweeting about the row. “Victory! #Facebook has buckled! I’m Salman Rushdie again. I feel SO much better. An identity crisis at my age is no fun. Thank you Twitter!” wrote the British Indian author, who is known as SalmanRushdie on Twitter. “Just received an apology from The #Facebook Team. All is sweetness and light.””
Aussie expat’s TV torrent site shut down as The Slap producers intervene [SMH] – “The producers of ABC1 drama The Slap have succeeded in shutting down a Netherlands-based piracy website that over 40,000 Australian and New Zealand expats use to illegally watch local shows. The site, diwana.org, is run by an Australian expat who started the site over five years ago and is popular with expats and others based overseas who are looking to access Australia and New Zealand TV content, which is often difficult to access internationally.[…] Despite the shutdown of Diwana.org, The Slap is still widely available on other pirate websites.”
Exfoliate for Facebook [Android Market] – Android app to delete unwanted Facebook history: “Exfoliate automates the removal of old, forgotten, content from Facebook(tm). Old content on social networking sites is a threat to your privacy. Removing this old content by hand is tedious, and practically impossible. On your wall, Exfoliate can remove any post, comment, or like, whether made by you or by others, older than a time you specify. Exfoliate can remove your own posts, comments, and likes, from your friends’ walls too. You can choose the age of items you wish removed, and Exfoliate will remove any items that are at least as old as your selection from any of your selected content areas. It is important, though, to understand that Exfoliate truly deletes the content. It is not backed up and it is not recoverable – well, that’s kinda the point. […] Exfoliate is a network and battery hog, and there’s simply no way around this. To manage the impact, you can stop Exfoliate at any time, and restart Exfoliate later.”
Jailbreak the Patriarchy: my first Chrome extension [Danielle Sucher] – Clever: “I just released my first Chrome extension! It’s called Jailbreak the Patriarchy, and if you’re running Chrome, you can head over here to install it. What does it do? Jailbreak the Patriarchy genderswaps the world for you. When it’s installed, everything you read in Chrome (except for gmail, so far) loads with pronouns and a reasonably thorough set of other gendered words swapped. For example: “he loved his mother very much” would read as “she loved her father very much”, “the patriarchy also hurts men” would read as “the matriarchy also hurts women”, that sort of thing. This makes reading stuff on the internet a pretty fascinating and eye-opening experience, I must say. What would the world be like if we reversed the way we speak about women and men? Well, now you can find out!”
Facebook bans doll nipples [The Age] – Prudebook? “Facebook’s prude police are out in force yet again, this time threatening action against a Sydney jeweller for posting pictures of an exquisite nude porcelain doll posing with her works. Victoria Buckley, who owns a high-end jewellery store in the Strand Arcade on George Street, has long used dolls as inspiration for her pieces and hasn’t had one complaint about the A3 posters of the nudes in her shop window. But over the weekend she received six warnings from Facebook saying the pictures of the doll, which show little more than nipples, constituted “inappropriate content” and breached the site’s terms of service.The warnings said Facebook would remove the images and Buckley is worried she will be banned from the site if she posts them again.”
4Chan hackers blamed for redirecting Justin Bieber fans to porn websites [News.com.au] – 4chan Vs Bieber: “Hackers wreaked havoc with a series of Justin Bieber YouTube pages today – redirecting users to pornography websites and videos saying the Canadian pop star had died in a car accident. The first YouTube spoof sent fans of the 16-year-old singer into a panic after hackers changed the sound of a video falsely reporting that Bieber died in a car accident, Mashable social media blog reported. Other YouTube pages featured pop up windows of pornography websites and videos exposing underage Bieber fans to explicit content. Internet forum 4Chan was blamed for the attacks but it is believed others joined in once the hack was discovered. YouTube said it was working to fix the problem as soon as possible. The stunt came just days after Bieber took to his Twitter account to dispel rumours regarding the identity of his father, claims that he was dead and reports his mother was offered a hefty sum to pose topless for Playboy magazine.”
Guardian Takes Next Step in Open Content Strategy With Blog Plugin [Giga OM] – As many other newspapers try and lock their content behind paywalls and paid apps, the Guardian is moving boldly in the opposite direction, releasing a free WordPress application to embed full articles from the Guardian in any WordPress blog. The Guardian makes money by keeping their advertising intact, but gives bloggers the full right to re-post Guardian content (not just snippets). It’s not a perfect app – nor that easy to install – but it’s definitely a move in the right direction, and evidence for a very sensible business plan for the Guardian group – sharing content further, not restricting it! Take notes, Rupert Murdoch!
Facebook “Likes” World Domination [Mashable] – Previous social networks, you’ll remember, were destinations. As soon as Friendster became slow and unreliable, an exodus to MySpace began. Once MySpace pages became bloated and unwieldy, the crowd hopped over to Facebook. Zuckerberg is well aware of the threat: If you build a destination site, users will hop over to the next cool hangout in no time at all. That’s why Facebook longs to become a sturdy platform. The more businesses rely on Facebook, the less likely it is to fail. […] and thousands of websites now use Facebook Connect for their login systems. The toolbar and web-wide “like” button are the next phase; by providing more distributed services, Facebook becomes invaluable. Credits, Connect, toolbars — these are all distributed plays that try to weave Facebook’s social graph throughout the fabric of the web. Rather than aiming to be the coolest bar in town — and losing its clientele when they leave for a hipper spot — Facebook plans to become the Starbucks of the web …”
Facebook Open Graph: What it Means for Privacy [Mashable] – Sensible thoughts on the privacy implications of Facebook’s new web plugins: “… it is imperative that users who have concerns about privacy make sure they read and understand what information they are making available to applications before using them. Users need to be aware that when they “Like” an article on CNN, that “Like” may show up on a customized view that their friends see. Public no longer means “public on Facebook,” it means “public in the Facebook ecosystem.” Some companies, like Pandora, are going to go to great lengths to allow users to separate or opt out of linking their Pandora and Facebook accounts together, but users can’t expect all apps and sites to take that approach. My advice to you: Be aware of your privacy settings.”
Facebook introduces Docs, based on Microsoft Web Office [Technology | guardian.co.uk] – A good at the differences between Google and Microosft/Facebook’s cloud office tools: “Facebook Docs is still in beta, so it’s not clear how many features it will offer. However, Microsoft’s Web Apps suite is more powerful than Google Docs, and has the advantage of maintaining compatibility with the desktop version of Microsoft Office. With Google Docs, by contrast, what you get out of it is worse than what you put into it, so trying to “round trip” complex documents is basically a waste of time. Of course, Microsoft Office Web Apps will be available to everyone whether they are a member of Facebook or not. Facebook is providing the social features, such as documents appearing on walls and in profiles so that friends can comment on them, and so on. For some users, the combination will be worthwhile.”
Introducing Docs… for Facebook [Docs.com Blog] – Microsoft’s online office 2010 offering ‘Docs’ partners with Facebook, allowing Facebook users to sign in, share and collaborate on documents. Clearly a direct challenge to Google’s emerging Google Docs and Spreadsheets.
Links of interest for November 13th 2008 through November 14th 2008:
Too many twitters drown out Rudd website [SMH] – “So many people were signing up to follow [Australian] Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s short text message updates on Twitter last night that his new page on the social networking site crashed. A spokeswoman for Mr Rudd said the Prime Minister had 670 Twitter followers late last night, but he lost most of them when the page crashed due to high demand. Having witnessed the power of the web in the US presidential election campaign, the Prime Minister and Opposition Leader are engaged in a high-tech arms race to win the hearts and minds of switched-on Australians. Mr Rudd effectively used internet profiles on MySpace and Facebook and his slick Kevin07 website during last year’s federal election but, since becoming Prime Minister, he hasn’t had much time for the web.” (Yes, I am following our PM – let’s see if this really will be used as a conversation, not a lecture!)
Google Earth revives ancient Rome [BBC NEWS | Technology] – “Google has added a new twist to its popular 3D map tool, Google Earth, offering millions of users the chance to visit a virtual ancient Rome. Google has reconstructed the sprawling city – inhabited by more than one million people as long ago as AD320. Users can zoom around the map to visit the Forum of Julius Caesar, stand in the centre of the Colosseum or swoop over the Basilica. Researchers behind the project say it adds to five centuries of knowledge. “This is another step in creating a virtual time machine,” said Bernard Frischer of Virginia University, which worked with Google on the Roman reconstruction.” (I wish they’d had this when I studied Ancient History as an undergraduate!)