“Always focus on good human interface, user interface. Computer apps are not to be judged by what they do or how well they do it. Rather, it is more important that they feel natural to normal humans and they are led to the right actions.”
- Steve Wozniak
Zach Harvey has an ambitious plan to accelerate adoption of the Internet’s favorite alternative currency: installing in thousands of bars, restaurants, and grocery stores ATMs that will let you buy Bitcoins anonymously.
Bitcoin has gradually increased in popularity since it appeared in 2009, with WordPress saying last fall that it would accept it as a payment method, and a handful of retail businesses, including Cups and Cakes Bakery in San Francisco, following suit. The exchange rate now hovers around US$30 a coin, and about $300 million is in circulation.
Unlike modern currency, which can be brought into existence at the whim of politicians or a central bank, leading to each note being devalued, the number of Bitcoins is governed by predictable mathematical algorithms. That’s made Bitcoin popular among libertarians and other activists skeptical of the Federal Reserve; the Free State Project accepts payment for its summer festival in Bitcoins, for instance. (The U.S. dollar has lost 96 percent of its value over the last century because of cumulative year-over-year inflation, according to federal government data.)
Good read – looking back at some interesting predictions that Steve made (drunken blog rant) and an exercise worth taking a stab at here.
1. XML databases will surpass relational databases in popularity by 2011.
2. Someone will make a lot of money by hosting open-source web applications.
3. Multi-threaded programming will fall out of favor by 2012.
4. Java’s “market share” on the JVM will drop below 50% by 2010.
5. Lisp will be in the top 10 most popular programming languages by 2010.
6. A new internet community-hangout will appear. One that you and I will frequent.
7. The mobile/wireless/handheld market is still at least 5 years out.
8. Someday I will voluntarily pay Google for one of their services.
9. Apple’s laptop sales will exceed those of HP/Compaq, IBM, Dell and Gateway combined by 2010.
10. In five years’ time, most programmers will still be average.
Read the details here: https://sites.google.com/site/steveyegge2/ten-predictions
I started reading this post that someone sent me (“I’m Tired Of Companies Ripping off our site, So I’m Calling Them Out”).. and I admit I was skeptical at first (“Well there are only so many popular styles at the moment.. surely he’s overreacting..”) but I opened each of the sites in a new tab and compared them side by side – WTH?!? It’s insane that a design company would rip off another designer, yes – yet how much MORE insane that they would use a ripped off design for their own website (ie talking about what innovative designers they are..) – I’m blown away. Check it out!
“When Time magazine selected the British artist Banksy—graffiti master, painter, activist, filmmaker and all-purpose provocateur—for its list of the world’s 100 most influential people in 2010, he found himself in the company of Barack Obama, Steve Jobs and Lady Gaga. He supplied a picture of himself with a paper bag (recyclable, naturally) over his head.
Most of his fans don’t really want to know who he is (and have loudly protested Fleet Street attempts to unmask him). But they do want to follow his upward trajectory from the outlaw spraying—or, as the argot has it, “bombing”—walls in Bristol, England, during the 1990s to the artist whose work commands hundreds of thousands of dollars in the auction houses of Britain and America. Today, he has bombed cities from Vienna to San Francisco, Barcelona to Paris and Detroit.
And he has moved from graffiti on gritty urban walls to paint on canvas, conceptual sculpture and even film, with the guileful documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop, which was nominated for an Academy Award.”
.. click the photo or post title to read more.. it’s a good read ;)
“The Government of Antigua is planning to launch a website selling movies, music and software, without paying U.S. copyright holders. The Caribbean island is taking the unprecedented step because the United States refuses to lift a trade “blockade” preventing the island from offering Internet gambling services, despite several WTO decisions in Antigua’s favor. The country now hopes to recoup some of the lost income through a WTO approved “warez” site.”..
“Google demands probable-cause, court-issued warrants to divulge the contents of Gmail and other cloud-stored documents to authorities in the United States — a startling revelation Wednesday that runs counter to federal law that does not always demand warrants.
The development surfaced as Google publicly announced that more than two-thirds of the user data Google forwards to government agencies across the United States is handed over without a probable-cause warrant.”
“For example, if [a visitor] went to XYZ.com and filled out a web form and then [the visitor] later visited 42floors.com, [42Floors] would be able to identify [the visitor] by name/email as well as company details even though [the visitor] never filled out a web form on [42Floors.com].”
Seriously creepy.. apparently the answer to the author’s question “When a user visits a site without ever having voluntarily supplied information to that site, should the user have an expectation that their identity is private until they chose to reveal it?” is that the developers think not…
Today it is perfectly legal for companies to buy and sell the rights to unlimited numbers of ideas, a company is not required to have any interest in making these ideas a reality. It is perfectly legal for companies to sit on patents and wait for others to create before either suing the creator or charging licensing fees…