All posts tagged ‘general’

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Learn About Learning Curves

In colloquial usage, a “steep learning curve” means the knowledge in question takes longer to learn; a “shallow learning curve” means it’s a nice quick process.

If you actually plot a learning curve, though, with time on the x axis and understanding on the y axis, you’ll see that your intuition fails you. A steeper curve indicates quicker learning, and the converse.

This has been a thorn in my pedantic side for a while, but I haven’t done anything about it. Finally, Rob of has. Let this be a lesson to everyone.

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Compiler Has Been Nominated for a Webby Award

I’m still trying to wrap my head around this even as I’m typing it, but the Compiler blog has been nominated for a Webby Award. OMG HFS, indeed!

We are an official nominee in the IT Hardware/Software category of the 12th Annual Webbys. And we’re not alone — Wired has been nominated for a total of six Webbys: for best news site, best copywriting and best home page, Danger Room for political blog, Game|Life for games-related website and Compiler for software website. Epicenter and Gadget Lab were also designated "Honorees" in the business and culture categories, respectively.* Check out all of this year’s nominees at

Compiler is also currently leading the People’s Voice vote in the Software/Hardware website category. Of course, we’re heartily encouraging you to go to the People’s Voice website and help keep us on top — so please cast your vote now! To find us, go to the Marketplace section, then expand the Software/Hardware category. Free registration is required, and you can vote once in each category. (Did we mention the other five awards Wired is up for?) Winners will be announced May 6th.

This is huge news for us. It not only represents Compiler’s first ever nomination for a major industry award, but it’s a validation of all the hard work we’ve been doing over the last few years.

This Webby nod also comes hot on the heels of Wired’s win for Best Classic Website at last month’s SXSWi Web Awards. It’s been a great year so far. A huge thanks to all of our supporters, the other nominees and everyone with a pulse and a valid e-mail address who cast a vote in our favor. Cheers.

* We should also mention that Wired is a Media Sponsor of the Webbys, along with Variety, Reuters and Adweek. Our relationship with them in no way influences the voting or the promotion of the event. In fact, the only reason I knew we’re a sponsor is because I saw our logo flash by on the Webbys site right now — I’m running FF3b5 and haven’t activated AdBlock Plus yet. No funny stuff, I swear!

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Give Us Your Data! Take Our Compiler Reader Survey

We’re always ones to argue for more data portability on the internet, so we’d like to take this opportunity to humbly ask that you, our readers, port some of your data over to us.

We’re trying to get a better idea of who you are and what you like to do — more than your thoughtfully-written comments can tell us, anyway. So, we’ve crafted a little questionnaire. Click here to take our Compiler reader survey. We’ve kept it as painless as possible. It’s just two pages and it takes about a minute or so to complete. Everything is totally anonymous.

Most of it is the standard reader survey stuff (did we mention it’s fast and anonymous?), but when you’re done, we’ll have a better understanding of each other. And really, isn’t that reason enough?

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Internet Address Upgrade Creates More Tubes

seriesoftubes.jpgToday marks the start of a huge overhaul to the internet’s underlying address system. The master address books for the web are beginning to update to a new format known as IP version 6.

While you and I use names, like or, to move around the web, our computers use numbers — translating from words to numbers so that we don’t have to remember the actual numerical address of the sites we’re visiting.

The bad news that the web grew much faster than expected. The current addressing system, IPv4, will exhaust the pool of possibilities by 2011.

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Does Digital Piracy Mean Innovation is Coming?

pirates.jpgNot convinced by with our earlier post about licensing your content in the public domain as Tantek ???elik advocates? Then consider The Pirate’s Dilemma a new book that argues we need to re-think our entire approach to copyright, content and ownership.

Matt Mason, author of The Pirate’s Dilemma, has a short article up over at Torrent Freak which highlights some of what he claims are the book’s core ideas, including the notion that piracy is often a precursor to innovation (a kind of twist on the old idea that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery).

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