Cyberspace
The Power of Memes

The Power of Memes

We’ve all seen them on social media. And we’ve all shared them. A photo or a cartoon posted with a message superimposed on it in big, white capital letters. Often it’s an in-joke, a piece of satire, or even a political statement. All memes really say one thing: share this post. More»

On This Day

On This Day

“It’s a way to pass the time while I’m waiting.” That’s what I had told a friend in his seventies recently, when he asked me how I managed to keep up with social media. And that’s what I was doing recently during the ten-minute break between my first and second classes, scrolling distractedly through my Facebook feed, when I was suddenly brought up short. More»

Now is Not Forever

Now is Not Forever

Sometimes the Internet surprises us with the past or, to be more precise, its own past. The other day my social media feed started to show the same clip over and over. It was one I had seen years before and forgotten about, back from the bottom of that overwhelming ocean of content available to us at any given moment. Why was it reappearing now, I wondered? More»

Slap Hillary

Slap Hillary

On Monday, August 5th, The Hillary Project, tweeted reporters far and wide to ask them, ‘Have you slapped Hillary today?’ Because, it seems, this Republican Super PAC has made this possible, at least virtually, by resurrecting the 13-year-old game, Slap Hillary on their website. More»

Data and Democracy

Data and Democracy

The 9/11 attacks confirmed what many of America’s critics suspected. They were a sign of decline. With the economy contracting, and no clear adversary in sight following the fall of the USSR, Washington was at a loss to define itself as the impregnable power everyone once feared. Indeed, there was something unprecedented about it all. More»

The Social in Media

The Social in Media

Four years ago, David Armano opened his home to a Romanian immigrant and her three kids (one with Down’s Syndrome.) The woman — Daniela — had lost her home due to an unpaid mortgage, was divorcing her spouse after years of abuse, and had nowhere to go other than a shelter. More»

You're Under Surveillance

You’re Under Surveillance

Richard Clarke is concerned that Stuxnet, presumed to have been an Israeli-American initiative aimed at Iran’s nuclear program, is being studied by China to use against the U.S.  “It got loose because there was a mistake,” he told Smithsonian Magazine. Clarke was angry, calling Stuxnet, “The best cyberweapon the United States has ever developed,” which it “gave the world for free.” More»

Memorializing Steve Jobs

Memorializing Steve Jobs

Cancer sucks. I, too, mourn the passing of Steve Jobs. Not to mention a few notable, world changing people who passed away the same week as Apple’s co-founder.  I too appreciate the contributions to technology and design he made. Jobs sold things that people did not even know they needed until they held them. More»

Perfect Pitch

Perfect Pitch

As word of Steve Jobs’ death spread, it was apparent that he had entered the pantheon of the Think Different campaign he promoted upon his return to Apple Computer in the late 1990s. Unlike the vast majority of corporate executives, he had become a celebrity that millions of people recognized on sight, someone who had transcended the need for a caption. More»

Breaking the News

Breaking the News

Early this week, I found myself following a piece of breaking baseball news. The subject of the news isn’t what matters; you could substitute the debt-ceiling crisis, or impending revolt in a troubled country, or a terrorist act in Norway. I got a phone call from my son around 10:30 Wednesday morning, telling me that it appeared our favorite baseball team, the San Francisco Giants, was making a trade for a valuable player named Carlos Beltran. We only talked for a few minutes, after which I knew I had to track this story down. More»

Wake Up, David Cameron

Wake Up, David Cameron

Kudos to the Twitter client, TweetDeck, who were acquired by Twitter itself last week.  The tiny British startup will get the support it needs to create an even better product. Of nearly equal interest was The Guardian article announcing its acquisition, Twitter buys UK’s TweetDeck for £25m. More»

The Pleasure Principle

The Pleasure Principle

Another day, another cloud-based service. Another day, another music service launches. Double-whammy, we get Amazon’s new music service, Cloud Player. Too little, too late. More»