posts about or somewhat related to ‘web’

Unless we have an open, neutral internet we can rely on without worrying about what’s happening at the back door, we can’t have open government, good democracy, good healthcare, connected communities and diversity of culture. It’s not naive to think we can have that, but it is naive to think we can just sit back and get it.

On its 25th birthday, Web creator Tim Berners-Lee calls for an online bill of rights. The Guardian, An online Magna Carta: Berners-Lee calls for bill of rights for web.

Via the Web We Want:

March 12 2014 is the World Wide Web’s 25th Birthday. On this day in 1989, Sir Tim Berners-Lee filed the memo that led to the creation of the Web.

To mark this occasion, Berners-Lee and two organisations close to him, the World Wide Web Foundation and the World Wide Web Consortium are inviting everyone, everywhere to wish the Web a happy birthday using #web25. They have also joined forces to create webat25.org, a site where a selection of global birthday greetings will be displayed and worldwide events to celebrate the anniversary will be publicised.

And back to The Guardian:

Berners-Lee has been an outspoken critic of the American and British spy agencies’ surveillance of citizens following the revelations by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. In the light of what has emerged, he said, people were looking for an overhaul of how the security services were managed.

His views also echo across the technology industry, where there is particular anger about the efforts by the NSA and Britain’s GCHQ to undermine encryption and security tools – something many cybersecurity experts say has been counterproductive and undermined everyone’s security.

Principles of privacy, free speech and responsible anonymity would be explored in the Magna Carta scheme. “These issues have crept up on us,” Berners-Lee said. “Our rights are being infringed more and more on every side, and the danger is that we get used to it. So I want to use the 25th anniversary for us all to do that, to take the web back into our own hands and define the web we want for the next 25 years.”

The web constitution proposal should also examine the impact of copyright laws and the cultural-societal issues around the ethics of technology.

As The Guardian notes, “While regional regulation and cultural sensitivities would vary, Berners-Lee said he believed a shared document of principle could provide an international standard for the values of the open web.”

Bonus: Read Berners-Lee’s birthday announcement at WebAt25.org where he briefly outlines some challenges and opportunities for the next 25 years.

Getting Web Literate
The Mozilla Foundation released its specification for a Web Literacy Standard. This, in the foundation and extended community’s view, is what people should know when participating on the Web.
Topics range from understanding the credibility of a Web site you’ve landed on; the ability to compare “information from a number of sources to judge the trustworthiness of content;” composing content for the Web (basic HTML, how to embed a video), remixing found content into something new; and basic coding with script frameworks, loops and arrays among other topics.
Take a look and see how literate you may be.
Educators teaching the Internets should explore the standard, according to Doug Belshaw, one of the standard’s creators, and consider incorporating it into their curricula.
If you’re interested in participating in the ongoing creating of the Web Literacy Standard, Mozilla places its open calls for ideas and consensus here. 

Getting Web Literate

The Mozilla Foundation released its specification for a Web Literacy Standard. This, in the foundation and extended community’s view, is what people should know when participating on the Web.

Topics range from understanding the credibility of a Web site you’ve landed on; the ability to compare “information from a number of sources to judge the trustworthiness of content;” composing content for the Web (basic HTML, how to embed a video), remixing found content into something new; and basic coding with script frameworks, loops and arrays among other topics.

Take a look and see how literate you may be.

Educators teaching the Internets should explore the standard, according to Doug Belshaw, one of the standard’s creators, and consider incorporating it into their curricula.

If you’re interested in participating in the ongoing creating of the Web Literacy Standard, Mozilla places its open calls for ideas and consensus here

Why It’s Time to Rethink Web Video Entirely
Producer Adam Westbrook recently built an essay called The Web Video Problem about how cinematic video content is wrong for the web, and that we can and ought to recreate the visual storytelling experience on the web entirely. Toward that end, he’s working on web publishing house (Hot Pursuit).
He writes:

In visual storytelling on the web we are still talking about images in deliberate sequence. We are juxtaposing these images, either over time (in a linear audio/visual way) or in space (like a web comic might).
If we accept this definition of visual storytelling (in the purest sense) then it doesn’t matter if it’s video, a web comic or even an animated GIF - or a combination of all these and more.
Combine this with the growing capabilities of the web browser, and the connectedness of the internet, and potentially we have the ability to tell dynamic, visual stories in a way that hasn’t been done before.
This excites me very much.

The essay is nicely built and designed with bold, scrolling visuals (using the curtain jquery plug-in, which yes, is very popular these days and can be downloaded here for your own building pleasure) so that you can choose to read the whole thing or just get the highlights. It’s worth checking out. 
Bonus: He provides some great resources on visual storytelling:

A good briefing on the principles of visual storytelling are featured in the second issue of Inside the Story Magazine, available here. If you don’t want to pay for the whole thing, this free articlecovers a lot of the same ground. Scott McCloud’s comic book on comic books is an essential read for visual storytellers. Craig Mod’s essay on Subcompact Publishing informed some of the ideas about thinking web-natively, as did this article by John Pavlus and this piece by Bryan Goldberg. Finally, Steven Benedict’sanalysis of Spielberg’s cinematic storytelling skills demonstrate what visual narrative can acheive, and let Steven Soderbergh tell you why this new thing shouldn’t become like the movie business.

Image: Screenshot from The Web Video Problem

Why It’s Time to Rethink Web Video Entirely

Producer Adam Westbrook recently built an essay called The Web Video Problem about how cinematic video content is wrong for the web, and that we can and ought to recreate the visual storytelling experience on the web entirely. Toward that end, he’s working on web publishing house (Hot Pursuit).

He writes:

In visual storytelling on the web we are still talking about images in deliberate sequence. We are juxtaposing these images, either over time (in a linear audio/visual way) or in space (like a web comic might).

If we accept this definition of visual storytelling (in the purest sense) then it doesn’t matter if it’s video, a web comic or even an animated GIF - or a combination of all these and more.

Combine this with the growing capabilities of the web browser, and the connectedness of the internet, and potentially we have the ability to tell dynamic, visual stories in a way that hasn’t been done before.

This excites me very much.

The essay is nicely built and designed with bold, scrolling visuals (using the curtain jquery plug-in, which yes, is very popular these days and can be downloaded here for your own building pleasure) so that you can choose to read the whole thing or just get the highlights. It’s worth checking out. 

Bonus: He provides some great resources on visual storytelling:

A good briefing on the principles of visual storytelling are featured in the second issue of Inside the Story Magazine, available here. If you don’t want to pay for the whole thing, this free articlecovers a lot of the same ground. Scott McCloud’s comic book on comic books is an essential read for visual storytellers. Craig Mod’s essay on Subcompact Publishing informed some of the ideas about thinking web-natively, as did this article by John Pavlus and this piece by Bryan Goldberg. Finally, Steven Benedict’sanalysis of Spielberg’s cinematic storytelling skills demonstrate what visual narrative can acheive, and let Steven Soderbergh tell you why this new thing shouldn’t become like the movie business.

Image: Screenshot from The Web Video Problem

Where to Start as a Journalist? Try the Peabody Awards

I’m graduating in May in hopes of becoming a journalist. I’ve had internships and I’ve worked for my university’s online news source. Can you steer a terrified senior in a direction? Where should I look? What should I be looking for? What should I work on?” — Helena

We get questions like this fairly frequently and there’s no exact answer. But with yesterday’s announcement of the 2012 Peabody Award winners we’re seeing the incredible range of today’s journalism.This isn’t to say that you can’t quibble with this story winning over that story, or say they could chose more innovative work, but it is to say that if you look at the winners from the Web, radio, television and documentary you see a wild diversity of storytelling approaches and ideas.

And reviewing some of the winners, I think, is a great place to start.

Start with the Web and The New York Times win for “Snow Fall: The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek,” a multimedia feature using aerial photography, video and words while taking advantage of contemporary presentation techniques such as responsive design and parallax in order to augment and further drive the story forward.

SCOTUSBlog is the other Web winner. There are no bells and whistles. Instead, it’s pretty much a text only blog that’s become a go to resource for stories, background and explainers on all things that have to do with the US Supreme Court. Here, deep, thorough, consistent reporting and analysis wins out.

Radio, I think, is in a golden age and the reason I think this is is because of the launch of iTunes back in 2001. This allowed people to easily subscribe to podcasts — and by extension radio programming — that we previously didn’t have access to. Yes, RSS already existed but iTunes gave us an easy interface to either hear or distribute programming. While your local public radio station might not carry it, you can now hear everything from the BBC’s From Our Own Correspondent to The Moth Radio Hour, 99% Invisible and Radiolab among a host of other exceptional programming.

Each of these programs uses different techniques and styles. By listening and analyzing, we learn new tricks that expand our understanding of what’s possible in audio storytelling.

One of this year’s radio winners comes from Radio Diaries, is called “Teen Contender" and follows the 16-year-old Olympic boxer Claressa Shields in a first person narrative from Flint, Michigan to London. Here’s a great breakdown by Julia Barton on the techniques used and how this created great radio.

Other radio winners include WNYC’s Leonard Lopate Show, a “traditional” hosted show about New York’s political and cultural life; This American Life’s “What Happened at Dos Erres,” an incredible radio documentary about a Guatemalan immigrant in Boston “who learns that the man he believed to be his father actually led the massacre of his village”; and NPR for its hard news reporting in Syria by Kelly McEvers and Deborah Amos.

I’ll leave it at this and with the recommendation to explore different types of journalism awards across magazines, multimedia, photography, documentary, radio and the rest. Through it, you’ll come across work that brings about an “Aha!” moment, one that makes you say, “This is what I want to do.” And then start positioning yourself and aiming towards doing it by applying for work — or learning the skills needed to apply for work — in that area.

Hope this helps. — Michael

Have a question? Ask away.

An inside peek into the Polygon design process →

Via voxmediaproduct:

It’s not every day you get to design a big ass new editorial site from scratch. This is a look into the design process for Polygon, the second of two huge projects tackled by Vox Product in 2012. Be warned: this is a deep look at our process and our work. Grab a beer or three, and join me for a walk through the past.

Like design? Like news? Then read how Vox Media created the gaming culture site Polygon.

Ted Irvine, Vox’s design director, walks through the original creative brief, choosing typefaces, creating the logo, developing the overall brand identity, and designing a responsive site for Web, mobile and tablets. 

(Source: voxmediaproduct)

As it Happens, I’m a Writer
The Oatmeal, detail, Some thoughts and musings on making things for the web.

As it Happens, I’m a Writer

The Oatmeal, detail, Some thoughts and musings on making things for the web.

Designers, especially those transitioning from print to web, yearn for [a consistent canvas size]. We’re lucky to have it on phones, but the varying sizes of desktop browsers throw us in a loop. Despite that, I was bullish on keeping the width of the desktop text at a comfortable 65-70 characters per line no matter how long your browser becomes. I was steadfast in keeping the content on top—not hugged by filters, settings, search bars and ads. More space in your window doesn’t mean you have to fill it.

Mig Reyes, designer, 37signals, on redesigning the Signal vs Noise blog (but don’t call it a blog). 37signals, The Typography and Layout behind the new Signal vs. Noise redesign.

Let’s repeat: More space in your window doesn’t mean you have to fill it.

Via shaneguiter.

Enough Tinkering, Let’s Launch
Those who follow what we do here see occasional interviews we’ve conducted with different people about their work.
We have a dedicated site for that now and I’ll get a bit meta by quoting myself from the introductory post:

Over the next few months we plan to feature hundreds of video interviews with people within the news and media industry who focus on business models, technology solutions and innovation, education, practice, and society, and hope these will provide a catalyst for discussion and debate around the topics we explore. One interesting addition to this is that soon we’ll let people download individual videos with the request that they mix and mash them into small narratives around a theme (eg, evolving newsrooms) and reupload them back to the community.

So that’s our housekeeping for the day.
Please share the site widely with journo-media-tech geeks most closest to you.
Image: Detail, theFJP.org.

Enough Tinkering, Let’s Launch

Those who follow what we do here see occasional interviews we’ve conducted with different people about their work.

We have a dedicated site for that now and I’ll get a bit meta by quoting myself from the introductory post:

Over the next few months we plan to feature hundreds of video interviews with people within the news and media industry who focus on business models, technology solutions and innovation, education, practice, and society, and hope these will provide a catalyst for discussion and debate around the topics we explore. One interesting addition to this is that soon we’ll let people download individual videos with the request that they mix and mash them into small narratives around a theme (eg, evolving newsrooms) and reupload them back to the community.

So that’s our housekeeping for the day.

Please share the site widely with journo-media-tech geeks most closest to you.

Image: Detail, theFJP.org.

Browser Statistics: 2002 - 2012

Looking at how different views of the same data give a different feel to the overall information.

Data comes from W3Schools. AOL, Mozilla and Netscape were discarded.

Select any to embiggen.

UPDATE: If confused at what we’re getting at, see here.

Evolution of the Web
Mashable has a great history of the Web interactive that runs from 1990 to 2012. Select an item (eg., the Touch Events HTML5 specification from 2011) and you’re brought to resources specific to them on third party sites.
And it’s pretty too. Which is nice.
Kudos to Hyperakt and Vizzuality for pulling it together.
Image: Screenshot detail of History of the Internet in a Nutshell, via Mashable.
Select to embiggen but better to read through.

Evolution of the Web

Mashable has a great history of the Web interactive that runs from 1990 to 2012. Select an item (eg., the Touch Events HTML5 specification from 2011) and you’re brought to resources specific to them on third party sites.

And it’s pretty too. Which is nice.

Kudos to Hyperakt and Vizzuality for pulling it together.

Image: Screenshot detail of History of the Internet in a Nutshell, via Mashable.

Select to embiggen but better to read through.

http colon slash slash w w w
Via Michael Mahemoff.

http colon slash slash w w w

Via Michael Mahemoff.

The ongoing death of newspapers is not about changes in journalism, or the need for them. It is about a business model that has ceased to be relevant in the face of present technology. It used to be a poorly kept secret, but amid a vast array of competing histories, it’s been forgotten like last year’s canceled NBC sitcoms: What made newspapers successful was never the news. Newspapers provided vital services in people’s lives: their connections with their hometown, the notices of local events, the daily topics of conversation, the latest thoughts hovering over Snoopy’s head as he snored atop his doghouse. Many of these services were syndicated, and those that were not - like the classified ads - were intensely well managed. The front page, and the headlines therein, were merely the container…

…The Internet commandeered the services that newspapers once championed and delivered each of these services on an a la carte basis. In an earlier era, it made sense to bundle these services in a single package - the newspaper - and deliver it fully assembled. Today, the Web itself is the package, and each of the services now competes against other similar services in separate, often healthy, markets. And this is as it should be - this is not somehow wrong…

There is no rational business model that can be formed around solely the production of news, just as many artists will attest that there is no stable business model around just an artist producing art that does not involve dying first. News must be bundled with a service. And that’s a problem, because the Web model is to unbundle everything, reduce every service to its basic and fundamental form, and present it to you as a site or, more recently, as an app. If you ask southern California venture capitalists what types of investments they’re searching for, they’ll tell you they’re looking for that one thing - not six things bundled together, not three existing things that complement one another. One disruptive thing.

And that thing tends to omit the word “news.”

— Scott M. Fulton, III, ReadWriteWeb. On the Difference Between Google and Journalism

China Says no to Artist’s Self-Surveillance
On Tuesday, Ai Weiwei, a Chinese artist and activist, set up five surveillance cameras in his studio and streamed the footage to Weiweicam.com. The goal was to let friends and fans know how we was doing on the one year anniversary of his last arrest.
It was also to let authorities check in on him.
Via the Guardian:

"It is the exact day, one year ago, that I went missing for 81 days. All my family and friends and everyone who cared were wondering where this guy was. So on the anniversary I think people may have worries. It’s a gift to them: I’m here and you can see me," he said…
…”This is also a gift to public security because they follow me, tap my phone and do what is necessary to get ‘secrets’ from me. I don’t have secrets,” Ai said, poiting out there were now 15 surveillance cameras within a 100m stretch of road outside his home, making it the most-watched area of Beijing.

Today, Weiweicam.com is down after authorities objected to the live feed.
"There was no clear explanation, but there was no clear explanation of why I was detained for 81 days, so it would be ridiculous to ask them," Ai tells the Guardian. “When I turned the cameras on myself and on to my privacy — which is exactly what they did to me when I was in detention — they got scared and didn’t know how to handle it.”
Image: Marble Surveillance Camera, by Ai Weiwei. The 2010 sculpture mocks the 15 surveillance cameras outside his home. Via Minimal Exposition.

China Says no to Artist’s Self-Surveillance

On Tuesday, Ai Weiwei, a Chinese artist and activist, set up five surveillance cameras in his studio and streamed the footage to Weiweicam.com. The goal was to let friends and fans know how we was doing on the one year anniversary of his last arrest.

It was also to let authorities check in on him.

Via the Guardian:

"It is the exact day, one year ago, that I went missing for 81 days. All my family and friends and everyone who cared were wondering where this guy was. So on the anniversary I think people may have worries. It’s a gift to them: I’m here and you can see me," he said…

…”This is also a gift to public security because they follow me, tap my phone and do what is necessary to get ‘secrets’ from me. I don’t have secrets,” Ai said, poiting out there were now 15 surveillance cameras within a 100m stretch of road outside his home, making it the most-watched area of Beijing.

Today, Weiweicam.com is down after authorities objected to the live feed.

"There was no clear explanation, but there was no clear explanation of why I was detained for 81 days, so it would be ridiculous to ask them," Ai tells the Guardian. “When I turned the cameras on myself and on to my privacy — which is exactly what they did to me when I was in detention — they got scared and didn’t know how to handle it.”

Image: Marble Surveillance Camera, by Ai Weiwei. The 2010 sculpture mocks the 15 surveillance cameras outside his home. Via Minimal Exposition.

Top 10 Broadcast Media Websites (by US Market Share of Visits). March 2012.
Via.

Top 10 Broadcast Media Websites (by US Market Share of Visits). March 2012.

Via.