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Annotated Digital Culture Links: March 6th 2009
Links for February 26th 2009 through March 6th 2009:
- Australians spend much more time online | Australian IT – “The Nielsen Online Internet and Technology Report surveyed more than 2000 Australians and found the average Aussie spent 89.2 hours a week consuming media last year or almost 80 per cent of their waking hours. … this was an increase of almost five hours on 2007 and an extra 17.8 hours from 2006. “Given the average Australian is only awake for around 112 hours per week, it’s surprisingly just how many of those waking hours are dedicated to media consumption… We’ve seen some pretty extraordinary increases in the past few years, however we would anticipate a levelling out in consumption hours of the next few years as Australians simply run out of hours in the day.” … people aged over 16 spent an average of 16.1 hours on the internet each week, 12.9 hours watching TV, 8.8 hours listening to the radio, 3.7 hours on a mobile phone and 2.8 hours reading newspapers. Some users also used more than one form of media at once, with more than three in five internet surfers [also]watching TV”
- RED MARS For Free [Warren Ellis] – “Kim Stanley Robinson’s brilliant sf novel RED MARS is now available as a free PDF download from its US publisher. [Direct link to PDF], and their Free Library page listing it and other available free downloads. Be warned: RED MARS is first of a trilogy, and there’s a good chance you’ll find yourself craving the others (GREEN MARS and BLUE MARS).” (If you”ve not read Red Mars, you’ve missed out on the best hard SF in years, go read it. As Ellis says, once you’ve gone Red, you won’t be able to stop yourself rushing to buy Green and Blue, too!)
- Virtual Worlds – Detailed timeline of the emergence of Virtual Worlds – encompasses many recognisable and a few more abstract elements (do virtual worlds really start in the 1700s?) (Thanks, Jill)
- Web censorship plan heads towards a dead end [The Age] – “The Government’s plan to introduce mandatory internet censorship has effectively been scuttled, following an independent senator’s decision to join the Greens and Opposition in blocking any legislation required to get the scheme started. The Opposition’s communications spokesman Nick Minchin has this week obtained independent legal advice saying that if the Government is to pursue a mandatory filtering regime “legislation of some sort will almost certainly be required”. Senator Nick Xenophon previously indicated he may support a filter that blocks online gambling websites but in a phone interview today he withdrew all support, saying “the more evidence that’s come out, the more questions there are on this”. The Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy, has consistently ignored advice from a host of technical experts saying the filters would slow the internet, block legitimate sites, be easily bypassed and fall short of capturing all of the nasty content available online.”
Annotated Links of Interest: November 14th 2008
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!)
- High quality YouTube video hack [Kottke] – A quick hack to embed high-quality versions of YouTube clips rather than the standard crappy quality ones.