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Archive for the ‘software’ category: Page 3

Jul 10, 2015

The Art of Time | The Plus

Posted by in categories: hardware, software

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Art and photography often dovetail nicely, to the point of being indistinct at times. But rarely does photography achieve the sort of free-flowing, brush-like effects that Matt Molloy imbues his incredible Time Stack photographs with. “My time stack series is a lot like a digital version of what the impressionist painters where trying to achieve in the 19th-century,” says Matt.

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Jul 6, 2015

How computers are learning to make human software work more efficiently — John R. Woodward, Justyna Petke And William Langdon | The Conversation

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, software

“Genetic improvement involves writing an automated “programmer” who manipulates the source code of a piece of through trial and error with a view to making it work more efficiently. This might include swapping lines of code around, deleting lines and inserting new ones – very much like a human programmer. Each manipulation is then tested against some quality measure to determine if the new version of the code is an improvement over the old version. It is about taking large software systems and altering them slightly to achieve better results. Read more

Jun 10, 2015

The quest to save today’s gaming history from being lost forever — Kyle Orland | Ars Technica

Posted by in categories: entertainment, media & arts, software

“‘When you’re seeking to preserve a historic house, there may be layers, it may have been lived in by many different people. Mount Vernon had been lived in by George Washington’s descendants, so they made a decision to restore it to George Washington’s time and erase this later history. Do you make the same kind of decision with games?’” Read more

Jun 10, 2015

Open Sourcing Is No Longer Optional, Not Even for Apple — Klint Finley Wired

Posted by in category: software

The biggest round of applause at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference keynote yesterday didn’t come when the company announced new versions of iOS and OS X, or even the new Apple Music service. It came when Apple’s vice president of engineering Craig Federighi announced that the company will open source the next version of its programming language Swift.

Why the excitement? Developers have demonstrated a growing preference for open source tools and platforms over the past 15 years. Apple, meanwhile, has pushed iOS developers towards its own in-house development technologies and away from third-party tools, such as Adobe Flash, that it deems inefficient. But even Apple can only risk alienating the developers on whom it relies for so many third-party apps and services so far. Coders have myriad options available to let them do their jobs the way they want; to keep them in-house, it turns out, Apple has to open up. Read more

Jun 10, 2015

Oculus Rift, Magic Leap, and the Future of Reality … By Ava Kofman | The Atlantic

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, electronics, hardware, information science, innovation, media & arts, software, virtual reality

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Vannevar Bush’s prediction, half a century later, rings true: “The world has arrived at an age of cheap complex devices of great reliability; and something is bound to come of it.”

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Jun 5, 2015

Ex-Googlers Get Millions to Help You Build the Next Google — Klint Finley Wired

Posted by in categories: information science, internet, software, supercomputing

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After Spencer Kimball left Google, he found himself missing some of the custom-built software the company uses internally. So he and a bunch of fellow ex-Googlers started building their own. And now they want to make it available to everyone to power the next Google or Facebook.

Specifically, Kimball wanted something like Google’s database system Spanner. Spanner is designed to juggle data between potentially millions of database servers, a tool that keeps Google’s services online even if several servers, or an entire datacenter, go offline. While few companies need to operate at quite the scale Google does, the ability to stay online even if many systems fail, and to automatically balance resources between servers, would be useful to many other companies. Read more

Apr 24, 2015

A Tool That Lets Designers Tweak iPhone Apps Without Code

Posted by in categories: hacking, innovation, software

— Wiredhttp://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/hone-582x340.jpgJaanus Kase isn’t sure we should teach every kid to code.

Wait, don’t grab your pitchfork just yet. He thinks it’s a perfectly noble idea, just that it ignores a basic fact: Programming as it exists today is tedious and a highly specialized skill—one that, frankly, not everyone is well-suited to. “Saying that everybody is a programmer, everybody must code, it’s dangerous,” he says. “It trivializes the art of programming. And it is an art—a craft.”

Rather than teach everyone to code, maybe it makes more sense to build tools that let some people side-step programming altogether? Read more

Apr 13, 2015

If Algorithms Know All, How Much Should Humans Help?

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, software

Steve Lohr | The New York Times


“Many data quants see marketing as a low-risk — and, yes, lucrative — petri dish in which to hone the tools of an emerging science. ‘What happens if my algorithm is wrong? Someone sees the wrong ad,’ said Claudia Perlich, a data scientist who works for an ad-targeting start-up. ‘What’s the harm? It’s not a false positive for breast cancer.’…These questions are spurring a branch of academic study known as algorithmic accountability.” Read more

Mar 9, 2015

Computers are so easy that we’ve forgotten how to create

Posted by in categories: computing, innovation, software

Samuel Arbesman — Aeon

My family’s first computer was the Commodore VIC-20. Billed by its pitchman, Star Trek’s William Shatner, as the ‘wonder computer of the 1980s’, I have many fond memories of this antiquated machine. I used to play games on it, with cassette tapes that served as primitive storage devices. One of the cassettes we bought was a Pac-Man clone that my brother and I would play. Instead of a yellow pie with a mouth, it used racing cars.

My most vivid memories are of the games whose code I typed in myself. While you could buy software for the VIC-20 (like the racecar game), a major way that people acquired software in those days was through computer code published in the pages of magazines. Want to play a fun skiing game? Then type out the computer program into your computer, line by line, and get to play it yourself. No purchase necessary. These programs were common then, but no longer. The tens of millions of lines of code that make up Microsoft Office won’t fit in a magazine. It would take shelves-worth of books.
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Mar 2, 2015

The ethical blindness of algorithms

Posted by in categories: big data, software

Steve Jones, Global vice president of big data, Capgemini — Quartz

Can an algorithm be racist? It’s a question that should be of concern for all data-driven organizations.

From analytics that help law enforcement predict future crimes, to retailers assessing the likelihood of female customers being pregnant (in the case of Target, without their knowledge), the increasing scale of computer cognizance is raising difficult ethical questions for business.

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