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Sep 3

Better Identification of Viking Corpses Reveals: Half of the Warriors Were Female

Choice quote (emphasis mine):

Previously, researchers had misidentified skeletons as male simply because they were buried with their swords and shields. (Female remains were identified by their oval brooches, and not much else.) By studying osteological signs of gender within the bones themselves, researchers discovered that approximately half of the remains were actually female warriors, given a proper burial with their weapons.

Just let that sink in: “researchers had misidentified skeletons as male simply because they were buried with their swords and shields”.

Google Plus drops “Real Names” policy

mostlysignssomeportents:

After years of criticism, Google Plus has finally dropped its controversial, Facebook-alike “Real Names” policy.

Read more…

Maybe they already know all they need to know by now

on sexting

nathanjurgenson:

Sometimes reporters ask me questions. I like answering them as best I can —another excuse to think and type if nothing else. I’ll try to post some of these exchanges here more often, as I did last year, an answer that ended up as a short Wired piece. I’ve also enabled an “ask” page

Tell them, Nathan!

May 2
rstevens:

Tonight’s comic is about elitism in a searchable world.

rstevens:

Tonight’s comic is about elitism in a searchable world.

(Source: dieselsweeties.com)

People are frightened of themselves. It’s like Freud saying that the best thing is to have no sensation at all, as if we’re supposed to live painlessly and unconsciously in the world. I have a much different view. The ancients are right: the dear old human experience is a singular, difficult, shadowed, brilliant experience that does not resolve into being comfortable in the world. The valley of the shadow is part of that, and you are depriving yourself if you do not experience what humankind has experienced, including doubt and sorrow. We experience pain and difficulty as failure instead of saying, I will pass through this, everyone I have ever admired has passed through this, music has come out of this, literature has come out of it. We should think of our humanity as a privilege.

- Paris Review - The Art of Fiction No. 198, Marilynne Robinson (via invisibleforeigner)

socialismartnature:

‘Beauty’ (Google screenshot) ‘No other group in America has so had their identity socialized out of existence as have black women… When black people are talked about the focus tends to be on black men; and when women are talked about the focus tends to be on white women.’ - Bell Hooks

socialismartnature:

‘Beauty’ (Google screenshot)

‘No other group in America has so had their identity socialized out of existence as have black women… When black people are talked about the focus tends to be on black men; and when women are talked about the focus tends to be on white women.’ - Bell Hooks

On Autocomplete

stopmoving:

blech:

Here’s an interesting set of observations on those UN Women print adverts I posted on Friday.

algopop:

"Actual Google search on 09/03/13" reads the small print on this poster campaign for UN Women. “When we came across these searches, we were shocked by how negative they were and decided we had to do something with them” says Christopher Hunt, the Art Director, but the shocking posters have not only raised issues concerning sexism, but also about the accountability of Google autocomplete. The Guardian responded with an ill-informed analysis of the mechanics of the autocomplete algorithm, while a more thorough response has come through the research community in the form of a blogpost by Anna Jobin of the Digital Humanities Lab at EPFL, Lausanne, who’s Phd is about our interactions with Google’s algorithms.  When provoking the question ‘who is in charge when algorithms are in charge?’ she states: 

I rather suspect a coordinated bunch of MRAs are to be blamed for the volume of said search terms – but that doesn’t mean Google is completely innocent. The question of accountability goes beyond a binary option of intentionality or complete innocence.

Unsurprisingly, Google doesn’t take any responsibility. It puts the blame on its own algorithms… as if the algorithms were beyond the company’s control.

slavin:

Funny, that.Doesn’t matter who, but when I first proposed a talk about algorithms to TED 3 years ago, there was a gatekeeper who asked, point-blank, who on earth would ever care or even understand what an algorithm is. It required great diplomacy to convince them that maybe a few people would care. It’s possible that by now, this person has been replaced with one.

ALGORITHMS ARE SO FASCINATING

oddly, tho, no mention of the fact that ‘google web history’ means your autocomplete also shapes itself to your browsing habits — this is, for example, how people manage to get such interesting poetic results (w/o just photoshopping it) — which is yet another way in which the responsibility for the algorithm is shifted away from the company who designed it.

Yes, there is: "… there is no reason to believe that suggestions aren’t, to some degree, personalized (the way search results are)." Same article, a couple of lines above the other quote. I remember it ‘cause I authored it ;)

How to Find Out How to Do Qualitative Research

betaknowledge:

But researchers can’t know ahead of time all the questions they will want to investigate, what theories they will ultimately find relevant to discoveries made during the research, or what methods will produce the information needed to solve the newly discovered problems.”

Howard Becker

slavin:

algopop:

"Actual Google search on 09/03/13" reads the small print on this poster campaign for UN Women. “When we came across these searches, we were shocked by how negative they were and decided we had to do something with them” says Christopher Hunt, the Art Director, but the shocking posters have not only raised issues concerning sexism, but also about the accountability of Google autocomplete. The Guardian responded with an ill-informed analysis of the mechanics of the autocomplete algorithm, while a more thorough response has come through the research community in the form of a blogpost by Anna Jobin of the Digital Humanities Lab at EPFL, Lausanne, who’s Phd is about our interactions with Google’s algorithms.  When provoking the question ‘who is in charge when algorithms are in charge?’ she states: 

I rather suspect a coordinated bunch of MRAs are to be blamed for the volume of said search terms – but that doesn’t mean Google is completely innocent. The question of accountability goes beyond a binary option of intentionality or complete innocence.

Unsurprisingly, Google doesn’t take any responsibility. It puts the blame on its own algorithms… as if the algorithms were beyond the company’s control.

Funny, that.

Doesn’t matter who, but when I first proposed a talk about algorithms to TED 3 years ago, there was a gatekeeper who asked, point-blank, who on earth would ever care or even understand what an algorithm is. It required great diplomacy to convince them that maybe a few people would care.

It’s possible that by now, this person has been replaced with one.


Kevin, it was YOUR talk at Liftconference that started everything for me - and now you’re reblogging someone who was quoting me… I’m glad I’m sitting down.

It is illegal for women to go topless in most cities, yet you can buy a magazine of a woman without her top on at any 7-11 store. So, you can sell breasts, but you cannot wear breasts, in America.

-

Violet Rose (via c-icatrix)

Talk about cognitive dissonance

(via havocados)

This is one of my favorite quotes about sexualization/objectification vs autonomy of female bodies bc it’s so succinct

(via platonicsbeforeerotics)

(Source: screamingfemale)