filtered // 13 May 2011

I star/heart things compulsively. In a moderately particular order...

Ben Fry, co-creator of Processing's remarks on data visualization tools getting into the hands of amateurs:  "The more that people are doing the work — it all kind of goes to improve the conversation of what’s good, bad useful and what’s not." Amen. / Speaking of visualization, these plush statistical distribution pillows look fantastic; much better than the pillow pets that have invaded my house... / More visualization: via Kottke, silly charts.

Tim Bray's wrapup post on Google IO is a good read, especially for what he did during his welcoming address, asking everyone to take three minutes and introduce themselves to the people around them. "The experience was striking as the noise in the room ramped from audience hush to barroom roar in about a half-second." Be sure to click through to see his photo of what happened. I need to remember to do this next time I'm in front of a big crowd; it's the conference version of passing the peace in church. 

Adam Mathes is doing textagon-styled lessons on product management: "product management is the precise application of the word NO." I wish I had learned that earlier on in my career; saying no is hard, and when done well should be rewarded more than saying yes. / Speaking of the ability to say "no," the sky/net mashup joke that made its way around the web just wasn't as funnyscary as it would have been back when Microsoft mattered more.

Micro-micro-media: there's an email newsletter called Lounges Monthly, for people who enjoy airport lounges. / On the consumption end of the spectrum, Ken Norton on things that would have blown his 16-year old mind. (File under everything's amazing nobody's happy.) / Khoi Vinh reimagines digital music packaging. "So much happens around the music that we enjoy, but why go elsewhere to conduct the kind of social interchange — tweets, blog posts, updates, amateur covers, video riffing — that an album inspires when you could just use the album itself as a gateway?" (I'm not so sure...I'm rather a fan of those tweets, blogs, updates, covers, video riffing...)

Finally, two of my favorite Internet micro-stars, talking: Kevin Fanning interviews Joshua Allen. "I feel like the time I’ve put in writing stuff for the internet has been one long throat-clearing, but I have no idea what I’m going to finally say."

Ahem.