Angry Robot

BlackBerry shares fall sharply after smartphone maker posts shock loss

New phones not selling well.

Otl Aicher 1972 Munich Olympics – Biography

A Daring Fireball reader pointed out this huge influence on the design of iOS 7.

TidBITS: The State of Google Reader Replacements

Thorough look at the likely candidates. I have two friends who disliked Feedly, however.

Two Major Rulings Back Gay Marriage in the US

Good week for it.

Pac-Man In First Person Is The Most Terrifying Game Of The Year

How Edward Snowden’s encrypted insurance file might work

The Pan Am Path: Proposal Unveiled for an 80-Kilometre Multi-Use Trail

Most of this trail is already there:

It is a trail system that already kind of exists in the city of Toronto, but is missing certain pieces that are required to make it a non-stop continuous path, and that’s what the path is about.

I’ve ridden most of this. Signage is a big issue, especially on the Humber side, which is a confusing mess. I’m pretty sure the Queen’s Quay work that is currently underway includes bike lanes (it’s supposed to be part of the Martin Goodman trail, after all).

Years – Bartholomäus Traubeck

“A record player that plays slices of wood.” (thanks Steve)

The abyss of freedom: On the recently-concluded season of Mad Men

fabulous reading

Systems vs. stories

Argues games that try to emulate film aren’t playing to the strength of the medium, which is creating systems that procedurally generate stories, like all your fond memories of doing wacky shit in GTA and/or that time a creeper blew up your castle in Minecraft. Agreed.

The Predator Drone Channel

24: “rather than a simple internal inquiry or calling HR, CTU authorizes a drone strike on itself; the attack kills Jack Bauer in the midst of waterboarding himself.”

Internet Cooking

I suppose it’s no surprise that the internet would change cooking. Cookbooks are a type of book, after all, and one that contains recipes, which are hard to keep contained when there’s a whole internet out there perfectly suited for sharing them. Living or dying by a collection of cookbooks seems not only old-fashioned, but positively missing out on a better way of doing things.

What I’ve found myself doing is roughly as follows. I get some kind of notion in my head (I’m going to make ribs!). I search for recipes. I clip them all to an online notebook (Evernote, in my case), and I compare them. I see what aspects are common to all (remove the tough skin, dry rub, etc.), and I pick and choose from the other ingredients and techniques, depending on my tastes, whims and ingredients on hand (Tuscan Ribs with Mayonnaise and Mouthwash!).

I never dealt well with the perfection in cookbooks. I would inevitably miss some ingredient, or mistime something, or run up against badly written instructions, and the results would be mildly disappointing. This reinforced in me a sense that I should not stray from the written text. Cooking became about following orders with maximum precision, which is to say not fun at all.

This new internet way is much better suited to me. It involves research, and perhaps some dulling of novelty via averaging, but the results tend to be personal in a way that is impossible with the old way. Of course, that makes it fun. So I have been cooking tons more.

The similarities to music struck me. We have an old model where an official version of The Music exists; we buy it, and listen to it, and that’s that. When I google folk music lyrics, however, I soon realize there are no official versions, just many different takes I can choose from, which only encourages me to make my own version.

This is the part where I would share a recipe but doesn’t that go against my point? So go make your own!

How Long Can You Wait to Have a Baby?

Short answer? A lot longer than most people think.

Asia will Drown, Africa will Starve in 30 years: World Bank Report on Global Warming


<blockquote>        <p>The world is now putting 35 billion metric tons of C02 into the atmosphere every year… If we go on like this, we will certainly produce a “4 degrees C. world” — a worst case scenario, in which our climate becomes unstable and there are floods, droughts and heat waves on a scale that make a typical Hollywood summer disaster movie look like a Smurf cartoon.</p>    </blockquote>

Twitter + GNIP

“More than 280 million Tweets posted from mobile phones reveal geographic usage patterns in unprecedented detail.” Wow – the geography of the smartphone wars. (via)

Twitter sucks sometimes

Mike of Penny Arcade got in a twitter war recently with the trans community. Here, he posts an email dialogue with a trans woman friend in which they resolve things. The honesty is impressive.

 <blockquote>        <p>It’s not an easy conversation to have. Or maybe it is if you’re willing to actually have a conversation. My reaction when I feel backed into corner is to be an asshole. It’s essentially how I defend myself. It’s been that way since was in elementary school. I’m 36 now. Maybe it’s finally time to try and let some of that shit go.</p>   </blockquote>

Chicxulub crater

Well, whaddaya know. I thought the cause of dinosaur extinction was still up in the air: meteor? ice age? mass suicide pact? Well, I guess I don’t keep up on my crater news, as there’s a consensus now: meteor. In 2010, 41 experts came to a consensus that whatever nasty meteor caused the massive 180km in diameter Chicxulub crater turned the lights out on dino time. Good to know!

TTC CEO suggests rush-hour ban on cars for King Street

Good idea. If the Relief Line gets approved, it will still take ten years to build. In the meantime we have to figure out ways of improving service to downtown on the surface routes. King is already at capacity, and yet the condos keep goin’ up.

On the Eve of the Feedpocalypse

Remember the news that Google Reader was going to shut down? Well, the end is nigh. July 1 is the feed rapture. I went over some options in my previous post on the topic, but it’s worth checking in to see where everyone stands.

Feedly seems to be the majority choice, touting that “more than 3,000,000 Google Reader users have switched to feedly”. They just announced Feedly Cloud, which is “a fast and scalable infrastructure to seamlessly replace Google Reader”. The good news for Reeder users is that Reeder and feedly will soon work together. The bad news for some of us is: like google reader, feedly’s business model is not clear. In this interview, the CEO says:

Our business model has both short-term and longer-term revenue sources. Feedly revenue today is derived from user content discovery and product discovery. Additional revenue channels will be introduced over time.

So, who knows. It sounds vaguely suspicious, but I’m not great at parsing tech CEO-speak. It is interesting to note that Feedly already had 4 million users so the RSS market is at least 7 million strong – Google said it wasn’t worth it for them because it was only a million. YOU LIE!!

Here are some other ones: NewsBlur, The Old Reader, Feed Wrangler, and FeedBin. Reeder supports FeedBin now and soon Feed Wrangler as well. Feedbin looks the prettiest to my eyes but I haven’t looked at these very hard – I’m going to give Fever another shot first, and if that doesn’t work, I may give these other options a better sizing up.

UPDATE: Just saw this article about Digg’s news reader via waxy who says it launches this weekend.

R.I.P. James Gandolfini

I have this weird complex with celebrity deaths – I feel almost guilty if I feel sad about them, presumably because I see the celebrity / fan relationship as a false relationship, i.e. they wouldn’t get upset if you died. But quite a few do provoke emotions, and this is one of them. Perhaps because he was so young. And stunningly talented, of course.

Your Feedback Matters – Update on Xbox One

In a delightfully placid “thanks for the death threats” post, Microsoft backtracks on their disastrous rethinking of user rights re: used games. (Thanks Steve)

Trees come down on Bloor, and condos will go up

“In Croatia, you can’t say what you think. Here, we can say what we think but it doesn’t count.” A developer was given permission to cut down 200 year-old-trees across from High Park in the middle of nesting season. Great work, OMB!

Persuading David Simon

Maciej Ceglowski takes issue with Simon’s lack of concern about PRISM.

Adactio: Journal—Battle for the planet of the APIs

On how web companies, following the Facebook model, have become less open. (Via)