An online Magna Carta: Berners-Lee calls for bill of rights for web

March 12, 2014

An online Magna Carta: Berners-Lee calls for bill of rights for web


Open Internet Preservation Act To Restore Net Neutrality

February 4, 2014

Open Internet Preservation Act To Restore Net Neutrality

Net Neutrality is an important part of our information infrastructure.

Internet Speeds Around the World

April 13, 2013

Allison Morris created this infographic of internet speeds around the world as part of her team’s effort “to make a connection between visualization and learning”.  Lots of food for thought.

Internet Infographic

The elmcity project – rethinking the community calendar

December 17, 2012

calimageJon Udell was at A2B3 Sept 27, 2012, talking about his elmcity project, a calendar aggregater he is working on.  He has a list of 300+calendar feeds for the Ann Arbor area… and that doesn’t include calendars from, Ann Arbor Observer, Ann Arbor SPARK, etc.  He is doing a Google Fiber type search for a demonstration city.  I think Ann Arbor would be perfect.

We discussed some enhancements to make the elmcity project more useful, keyword/tag filtering, geo-coding, etc.   One problem I noticed was that you can’t go back even one day to review recent events.

Until we get an aggregated community calendar fully in place like the one  Jon is promoting, one would have to subscribe to many calendars to know what events are happening in the community.  For a glimpse of what it might look like check out the Ann Arbor Chronicle’s Ann Arbor events listing.

Federal Document Archiving Will Go Open Source in the Cloud by 2019

August 24, 2012

“Federal agencies have until the end of 2019 to adopt systems that store and manage all electronic records in formats that will keep them safe and searchable for future generations, according to a White House directive released Friday.”  [more]  (from Nextgov via Mashable 8/24/2012)

From the 8/24/2012 Directive:

Goal 1: Require Electronic Recordkeeping to Ensure Transparency, Efficiency, and Accountability

Goal2: Demonstrate Compliance with Federal Records Management Statutes and Regulations

Mother Nature Takes Down Cloud

July 3, 2012

Another reminder of who’s in charge…

Amazon Cloud Goes Down Friday Night, Taking Netflix, Instagram And Pinterest With It

(from Forbes 6/30/2012)

Weather and MLK Helped Eradicate Smallpox?

May 9, 2012

This year marks the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s  visit to the University of Michigan.  The Michigan Daily published an April 15, 2012,  article about how “David Erdody, a digital curator at the Bentley Historical Library, discovered a series of 20 photo negatives” of MLK’s visit.  I read about this in Edward Vielmetti‘s 4/20/12 blog post and recalled a 2011 talk at U of M by Dr. Larry Brilliant in which he remembers being at that MLK talk on a wintry night when few ventured out and being duly inspired to find his life’s work… among which includes eradicating smallpox worldwide.

I’m copying my comments to Ed’s blog post here to remind us that seeming small coincidences and decisions can result in huge outcomes…

Check out Dr. Larry Brilliant’s life changing account of hearing Dr. King at Hill Auditorium… at about the 25:25 mark in this video of Dr. Brilliant’s inspirational 2011 SNRE Peter Wedge Lecture on sustainability at Rackham.

As reported the following day by SNRE News and Updates:
“Brilliant traced his own career, from sitting on the Hill Auditorium stage with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. as an undergraduate in the 1960s to his current role addressing pressing issues of global sustainability.”

Think about the coincidences… A young college student with no goals… a stormy night when most people would not venture out to hear an relatively unknown preacher… to therefore being invited on stage to be personally inspired… to happen into a series of unusual experiences… to lead a seemingly impossible effort to eradicate smallpox worldwide… to hold its last victim… and to go on to tackle more world problems. Destiny?

(P.S. Be sure to watch until at least the 30:50 mark for the best line in the video.  Actually, go on and listen to the rest of his talk for his calls to action.)


Web freedom faces greatest threat ever, warns Google’s Sergey Brin

April 15, 2012

“The principles of openness and universal access that underpinned the creation of the internet three decades ago are under greater threat than ever, according to Google co-founder Sergey Brin.” (from 4/15/2012 The Guardian)

Whether it’s squashing SOPA’s/PIPA’s China-like  controls over a free and open internet at the country level or opposing suppression of water pollution data at a local groundwater contamination site, it’s important for everyone to pay attention and stay involved.

Largest Online Protest In History

January 25, 2012

Supporters of a free and open internet rallied to oppose SOPA and PIPA… most notably with the largest online protest in history and with a blackout day to raise the public’s awareness of  the flawed legislation.  The result is that passage of SOPA and PIPA has been indefinitely postponed.

That is not to say that another set of similarly flawed legislation will reappear in the future, so be prepared.

December 11, 2011

ReadWriteWeb reports that the United States and India are teaming up to open source the data portal for all governments to use.

From the website…

Among the actions in the U.S. National Action Plan announced by President Obama is an effort under the U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue to produce “,” an open source version of the United States’ data portal and India’s document portal. The U.S. and India are working together to produce an open source version available for implementation by countries globally, encouraging governments around the word to stand up open data sites that promote transparency, improve citizen engagement, and engage application developers in continuously improving these efforts. Technical teams from the governments of the U.S. and India have been working together since August of this year, with a planned launch of a complete open source product (which is now called the Open Government Platform (OGPL) to reflect its broad scope) in early 2012. Find out more about the evolution of this project from the U.S. Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer.

This is really great news for those of us who want more transparency and effectiveness in government.