Links for 1st September 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. Computer Repair with Diagnostic Flowcharts

    Oooh, useful.

    Tagged with: computerhardwarerepairdiagnosticflowchartsmaintenancereference

  2. Don’t interrupt, and fit in: the rules for in-game ads

    "The most important aspect of ads that follow the rules of fitting into the game world and not interrupting the flow is placement, which the study calls the "key element," explaining "why some advertisements do not get much attention or are not remembered, even though they are constantly present in the field of view." Brand awareness does not matter, it was found, so even a popular brand can't overcome poor placement.

    There is always a risk when advertising within a game. "If the advertising is presented at the wrong time or place, it just does not catch the player´s attention in the best case. In the worst case the player might even develop a disliking for the advertised brand," the study showed. Of course, to find the optimal placement found in the study, you'll have to buy the results, which will run you €800." Ker-ching!

    Tagged with: advertisingmarketinggamesbrandingproduct-placementresearchcontextual

  3. The Good Enough Revolution: When Cheap and Simple Is Just Fine

    "So what happened? Well, in short, technology happened. The world has sped up, become more connected and a whole lot busier. As a result, what consumers want from the products and services they buy is fundamentally changing. We now favor flexibility over high fidelity, convenience over features, quick and dirty over slow and polished. Having it here and now is more important than having it perfect. These changes run so deep and wide, they're actually altering what we mean when we describe a product as "high-quality."

    And it's happening everywhere. As more sectors connect to the digital world, from medicine to the military, they too are seeing the rise of Good Enough tools like the Flip. Suddenly what seemed perfect is anything but, and products that appear mediocre at first glance are often the perfect fit."

    Tagged with: new-southseatechnologyeconomicsculturedesigninnovationqualitysimplicity

  4. Clive Thompson on the New Literacy

    "The fact that students today almost always write for an audience (something virtually no one in my generation did) gives them a different sense of what constitutes good writing. In interviews, they defined good prose as something that had an effect on the world. For them, writing is about persuading and organizing and debating, even if it's over something as quotidian as what movie to go see. The Stanford students were almost always less enthusiastic about their in-class writing because it had no audience but the professor: It didn't serve any purpose other than to get them a grade. As for those texting short-forms and smileys defiling serious academic writing? Another myth. When Lunsford examined the work of first-year students, she didn't find a single example of texting speak in an academic paper."

    Tagged with: technologywritinginternetcultureeducationliteracytrends

  5. Why AI is a dangerous dream

    "It is my contention that AI, and particularly robotics, exploits natural human zoomorphism. We want robots to appear like humans or animals, and this is assisted by cultural myths about AI and a willing suspension of disbelief. The old automata makers, going back as far as Hero of Alexandria, who made the first programmable robot in AD 60, saw their work as part of natural magic – the use of trick and illusion to make us believe their machines were alive. Modern robotics preserves this tradition with machines that can recognise emotion and manipulate silicone faces to show empathy. There are AI language programs that search databases to find conversationally appropriate sentences. If AI workers would accept the trickster role and be honest about it, we might progress a lot quicker."

    Tagged with: artificial-intelligenceAIroboticsintelligencesentiencemyth

  6. Augmented Reality in a Contact Lens

    "Conventional contact lenses are polymers formed in specific shapes to correct faulty vision. To turn such a lens into a functional system, we integrate control circuits, communication circuits, and miniature antennas into the lens using custom-built optoelectronic components. Those components will eventually include hundreds of LEDs, which will form images in front of the eye, such as words, charts, and photographs. Much of the hardware is semitransparent so that wearers can navigate their surroundings without crashing into them or becoming disoriented. In all likelihood, a separate, portable device will relay displayable information to the lens’s control circuit, which will operate the optoelectronics in the lens."

    Tagged with: augmented-realityARcontact-lensdisplayinterfacebiotechhardwareprosthesis

  7. Tech Designed for Music Charts Analyzes Stock Market

    "As it turns out, music and stocks have more in common than the fact that both are being analyzed by this engine.

    “Major news events, good or bad, drive buzz and interest in both music and stocks,” explained Phillips, although “with music it seems that any kind of publicity is good publicity … Nude photos of Cassie leaked and suddenly a lot more people were listening to Cassie. [And] from the data we saw, Michael Jackson’s death was worth about 10 album launches. His funeral worth about four albums.”"

    Tagged with: economicsanalysismarketfinancealgorithmresearchsocial-mediamusic

  8. Depression’s Evolutionary Roots

    "Many other symptoms of depression make sense in light of the idea that analysis must be uninterrupted. The desire for social isolation, for instance, helps the depressed person avoid situations that would require thinking about other things. Similarly, the inability to derive pleasure from sex or other activities prevents the depressed person from engaging in activities that could distract him or her from the problem. Even the loss of appetite often seen in depression could be viewed as promoting analysis because chewing and other oral activity interferes with the brain’s ability to process information." Hmmm.

    Tagged with: psychologydepressionevolutioncognitionthinkingemotionhealthanalysis

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