Internet

Interconnected, machine readable data, at scale

The NGA provides a free database with no regulations on its use. MaxMind takes some coordinates from that database and slaps IP addresses on them. Then IP mapping sites, as well as phone carriers offering “find my phone” services, display those coordinates on maps as distinct and exact locations, ignoring the “accuracy radius” that is supposed to accompany them.

“We assume the correctness of data, and often these people who are supposed to be competent make mistakes and those mistakes then are very detrimental to people’s daily lives,” said Olivier. “We need to get to a point where responsibility can be assigned to individuals who use data to ensure that they use the data correctly.”

From Kashmir Hill writing on the role of interconnected data in our modern lives. In this case it’s geo IP data, but it’s a story that’s increasingly common and likely in any field.

Two years after MaxMind first became aware of this problem with default [geo IP] locations, its lawyer says it’s still trying to fix it.

You can identify a dog on the internet, but will you bother to?

You can construct any [effing] narrative by scouring the internet for people claiming something. It doesn’t make it relevant. It doesn’t make it true.

From Agri Ismaïl’s media criticism (start here). This isn’t an issue of not knowing the dogs on the internet, it’s a matter of not caring who’s a dog in the interest of either clicks or political interest.

Parents in 1996 vs. 2016

This thread from Breanne Boland, which starts with a screenshot1 of another tweet:

Your parents in 1996: Don’t trust ANYONE on the Internet.

Your parents in 2016: Freedom Eagle dot Facebook says Hillary invented AIDS.


  1. Have you noticed that people are screenshotting tweets more than re-tweeting lately? [return]

An American iPhone in Europe

By way of update on my earlier post after researching options for AT&T iPhone users in Europe (with an unlocked phone), I ended up not bothering with local SIM cards in either The Netherlands or France. A savvy user should be able to find a local pay as you go SIM plan that’s less expensive […] » about 600 words

Preparing My iPhone For Europe

There’s uncertain talk of a European trip coming up, so I’m making nonspecific preparations for it. One of the questions I have is how to avoid hefty roaming charges from AT&T. In previous trips abroad I’d purchased overseas voice and data add-ons so I could use my iPhone. That works, up to a point. On my […] » about 400 words

Notes To Self: Twitter’s Website Rocks On Mobile Devices

Twitter’s mobile site rocks on my iPhone. Especially worth noting: they’ve figured out how to pin their header to the top while scrolling the content in the middle. They’re also using pushState() and other cool tricks to make the experience feel very native, but the scroll behavior is rare among web apps on iOS. Kent […] » about 200 words

What The Critics Are Missing About Apple’s iPad

It’s doubtful that anybody reading this blog missed the news that Apple finally took the wraps off their much rumored tablet: the iPad. Trouble is, a bunch of folks seem to be upset about the features and specs, or something that made the buzz machine go meh. It’s just a bigger iPhone, complain the privileged […] » about 400 words