Street art just got more homespun, thanks to “Hardcore Chicks With Sharp Sticks.” You go, grandma!

Graffiti’s Cozy, Feminine Side NYT > Home Page http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=d13cf59391fa2b6c5101200b9f65fca0

“Yarn bombing” seems to be having its moment in pop culture….

Yarn bombing takes that most matronly craft (knitting) and that most maternal of gestures (wrapping something cold in a warm blanket) and transfers it to the concrete and steel wilds of the urban streetscape. Hydrants, lampposts, mailboxes, bicycles, cars — even objects as big as buses and bridges — have all been bombed in recent years, ever so softly and usually at night.

It is a global phenomenon, with yarn bombers taking their brightly colored fuzzy work to Europe, Asia and beyond. In Paris, a yarn culprit has filled sidewalk cracks with colorful knots of yarn. In Denver, a group called Ladies Fancywork Society has crocheted tree trunks, park benches and public telephones. Seattle has the YarnCore collective (“Hardcore Chicks With Sharp Sticks”) and Stockholm has the knit crew Masquerade. In London, Knit the City has “yarnstormed” fountains and fences. And in Melbourne, Australia, a woman known as Bali conjures up cozies for bike racks and bus stops.

Nato is poised to bring down Muammar Gaddafi with Apache helicopters. Helicopters, did you say? How passé, at least compared with the dwarf drones, video monocles, and quantum dots on the Pentagon’s latest wishlist.

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Wired reports on a development that suggests Adobe may be ceding ground in the Flash versus HTML 5 competition:

Adobe wants to bring fancy, magazine-style layout tools to web design and the company is turning to web standard to make it happen.

Regions can be both positive and negative space. In other words, you can write CSS rules to flow text into a region — say, as below, a pie graph — or around a region (as in the image of Arches National Park at the top of this post).

Lest you think that Adobe is simply trying to improve the web — which may well be true — nevertheless, it’s worth bearing in mind Adobe’s own agenda. We suspect it’s no accident that the company has used WebKit to power the CSS Regions testing browser. WebKit is, after all, the engine that powers the iPad’s web browser.

With Apple banning Flash from its iOS devices, Adobe has little in the way of iPad-friendly tools to offer its big magazine clients. Given that publishers are betting heavily on the iPad’s ability to save their business model, the more iPad tools Adobe can offer, the happier magazine publishers will be. By rolling CSS Regions into WebKit for a demo, Adobe is already one step closer to a toe-hold on iOS devices.

This is a tough time to be a government in the U.S.  Ranging from municipal to federal, governments are under attack by conservatives and liberals alike for overspending, budget shortfalls, and service shortcomings.  Now, corporations make sure that they can’t do anything right, either. Continue reading »

The Marine Environmental Research Institute (MERI) is hiring someone with writing, technical and graphics skills at the MERI Center for Marine Studies in Blue Hill, Maine. Meanwhile this Tuesday the Bangor Chamber of Commerce is showcasing business advice from L. L. Bean, Black Dinah Chocolatiers, and yes, Shipyard Brewing Company.

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JavaScript and its siblings HTML and CSS have grown from lowly beginnings to become the gateway language to (almost) everything new media. Linux and Augmented Reality are the latest to succumb to the “JavaScript everywhere” trend.

Yes Virginia, That Is Linux Running on JavaScript http://feeds.wired.com/~r/wired/index/~3/k9zWnzmLxOE/ Wired News: Top Stories Thanks to today’s web browsers, JavaScript has become a very powerful language. Powerful enough to run Linux inside your web browser.

This new framework from Wikitude would have sure come in handy for some of last year’s AR-based NMD capstones.

Augmented Reality: Wikitude ARchitect http://www.wikitude.org/architect (Via Bruce Sterling)

Whenever we looked at Augmented Reality (AR) content platforms, we have always found them far too restrictive for AR content developers. They all offer a handful of features, which often limit the creative ideas AR content developers have. So we at Wikitude thought, “that’s not ideal, we need to change this, and we need to change this NOW!”

Consider this, when developing a webpage, would you be satisfied with only a handful of features especially if you knew there were powerful concepts like HTML, JavaScript and CSS were available which could make your life so much easier, but the web browser forces you to stick to the few features it offers you? We at Wikitude guess you wouldn’t. So, why should you accept this on Augmented Reality Browsers?

We asked ourselves this question a few months ago…..and created ARchitect!

ARchitect – a new way of creating Augmented Reality experiences

The Wikitude ARchitect is an Augmented Reality JavaScript Framework, embedded in a HTML web view which sits on top of the Wikitude camera view and allows developers to control the objects in the camera view. And when I say JavaScript, I don’t mean just another JSON object definition language, I’m really talking about the entire power of the JavaScript language. And when I say HTML, I don’t mean just a special div that can be placed at a predefined spot – nope, it’s the entire HTML specification that will be supported in Wikitude ARchitect. No exceptions, whatever is possible in an ordinary web browser will also be do-able in ARchitect. Promise!

Geolocation drawings by YOU! Concepts behind ARchitect

The three key concepts for us when designing the ARchitect were: 1) Developers shouldn’t be required to learn new concepts or tools. 2) The ARchitect should be very simple to get into, do something meaningful with only a few lines of code. 3) And yet, it should be massively powerful and flexible to create highly complex AR applications.

As we tried out various ideas to achieve these goals, it was rather obvious that HTML in combination with JavaScript was the best way to go!

HTML and JavaScript is all you need to know

Now, let’s have a look at the internals. (((Yes let’s!)))) The Wikitude ARchitect basically consists of two major parts. First, we have the HTML which is placed on top of the camera view. Typically, HTML will contain data which will not move with the user but remain on the screen, whatever the user is looking at. Examples of this would be status and progress bars or an inventory management in an AR game – basically, a heads up display. No additional skills required, it’s HTML with all the associated tools, like CSS or JavaScript, if you know how to create a webpage, you are ready to start developing with the ARchitect!

Second, the heart of ARchitect is the JavaScript library which ties deeply into the application and allows manipulation of the AR objects on the screen. Essentially, you can create virtual objects on the fly, create, place and modify Drawables visualizing the object or react on certain events, for example when an object comes in the field of vision, or when the user comes close to a certain location, and even execute a function you can specify.

Animations by YOU You can animate the objects and their visualizations, make them rotate, scale, disappear, … It’s totally up to you! Play sounds and videos, do network interaction, create interactive games, even with network multiplayer mode, let your phone vibrate, and much much more! With the ARchitect, you finally have a powerful tool in your hand to create incredible, mind-blowing AR applications!

The sky is the limit – realize your ideas

Wind deadline is 18 May, requires “strong social media skills” and a laptop (sounds like an NMD student to me). Also two internships in the health sector.

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The New York Times reports on the increasingly frequent–but still very controversial–practice of incorporating Twitter and other “backchannel” communication networks into the classroom. Do such conversations make classes more inclusive or more distracting?

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Why buy your own car/CDs/power tools, when your neighbors already have loads of them?

Rachel Botsman makes the case:

http://www.ted.com/talks/rachel_botsman_the_case_for_collaborative_consumption.html

NeighborGoods is already up to 2.0:

http://www.wired.com/beyond_the_beyond/2011/03/neighborgoods-kickstarter/ (Via Bruce Sterling).

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mickipedia/neighbors-helping-neighborgoods

Thanks to you, NeighborGoods has quickly become the leading online community for local resource sharing. Now, we’re reaching out directly to our members to help us take NeighborGoods to the next level.

We’re gearing up to launch NeighborGoods 2.0, which focuses on creating sharing communities for organizations, companies and and groups of all sizes.

Smartphones help:

People will ditch their cars and embrace mass transit if they have the tools to manage their commutes. Enter the smartphone … http://feeds.wired.com/~r/wired/index/~3/iPSyBkh6X_g/ Xatori unveils a free iPhone app that enables drivers to punch in their destinations and locate outlet owners who are willing to share. http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=fa66fe847e6ccd56e61dde5770c4ffbf

Now, to Find a Parking Spot, Drivers Look on Their Phones http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=d9838be80c3361a169de04e52c21ba99

And Zipcar’s IPO is meteoric:

http://feeds.wired.com/~r/wired/index/~3/vQEd37Mmv0A/ via Byline

Zipcar raises $174 million and sees its stock price soar a whopping 60 percent in its first day as a public company. The decade-old car sharing company, maybe the most disruptive entrant in the automobile rental space since Rent-A-Wreck, is now a billion-dollar operation.

Unlike a past Microsoft rumor I mentioned, this is a real deal: as reported by a few news sites including MSNBC, Microsoft is closing a deal to purchase Skype for $8.5 billion. From a New York Times analysis, the big winners are current Skype investors,

Now, several investors stand to benefit from Microsoft’s planned $8.5 billion acquisition of Skype, which was announced on Tuesday. Skype’s hodge podge of owners, including a private equity firm, a pension fund, and a venture capitalist reflects its changing fortunes over the years.

SealThe raid is liveblogged when one of Bin Laden’s neighbors complains about the noisy helicopters on Twitter, while Bin Laden’s compound gets 3 of 5 stars on Google Maps. Also in the news: weaponized dogs and a tale of two seals.

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Check out these summer opportunities from past NMD grads, media organizations–deadlines soon!

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