Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Social Evolution of Software

Today I came across CodeTree.

Can digital artists learn new techniques, be exposed to new coding structures, and better express themselves by working in tandem or in a group?

CodeTree is an attempt to create a worthwhile dialogue between new media artists of different skill levels and backgrounds. The project's objective is to offer a social network that facilitates learning and artistic expression—a place where coders can dissect, share, and expand upon one another's code.

The site is nice, but what really strikes me is the possibility of creating some kind of 'live' repository for code.
Ok, I know we have sourceforge, rubyforge and all those other forges and they do have forums and tools to comment on dovelopers, but I'm thinking about something different. Smaller piecies of code for a start. Nuggets of code that can be understood at a glance and modified with a quick brush on the keyboard. Think Java Almanac.

I would like these piecies of code to be tracked during their evolution, and to be able to follow the personal history of their contributors too. I would like to comment on them via a wiki-like interaction. I would love to use them via intellisense in my code.

I want to be able to sketch my intent and as soon as my 'Intentisense' picks up interesting keywords, somethink looking a bit like Google Suggest. If I do my own modifications I would then like to upload them directly to my Noosaurus, my shared executable knowledge thesaurus.. for other people to see and modify and rate and rank and tag.

Coding like tagging like blogging... I feel this can have huge potential.


Interesting site.  Bizarre visualizations.

I'll have to investigate this further.

Read more at www.chragokyberneticks....

Friday, December 16, 2005

Accounting as a Brainframe

These days I am reading De Kerckhove's Brainframes, a book that puts forward the idea that as we are shaping technologies, technologies are also shaping us, on the very neurological level, making us into very different kind of people.

He attacks the rethoric of 'the same old human nature with new better tools'. New tools make new humans.

I would like to put a link to the book here, but I couldn't get anything from the web. weird.

Anyway, I came across to this article that seems to point out how accounting has been a fundamental brainframe (neurological stance?) in the evolution of our society.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Algorithms Dictionary

This dictionary gives short definitions of all the major and many  minor algorithms.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

MetaLex: The Code and The Law

You must have heard the saying: if you have an idea, there is already a site about it on the web.  If you have an original idea, then there must be at least ten sites about it.

I googled for 'legal engine' and I found MetaLex.  This seems to be an XML legal ontology that could be a first step towards Executable Law This paper details some of the concepts.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Executable Law

Democracy 2.0 is a project that plans to rewrite laws from scratch via a wiki medium.  I'm not entirely sure of the validity of this experiment as I believe that a system as complex as a body of laws needs to evolve and adapt rather than being designed.

However this project gave me an idea.  Law is knowledge and some knowledge can be encoded in an executable format. What if laws could be translated to code?

You would have systems of laws that can be checked for consistency and loopholes.  The laws that apply to a given situation could be searched and legal simulations could be run as well.

Laws of course need interpretation, but I still wonder if there is a useful subset that could be mapped to code.

Time vs. Distance

When shaping knowledge, you should always remember what use it will be put to.
An underground map, for example, should represent the following information:
  • connections between stations
  • time taken by a train between two stations
  • relative positioning of the stations over the city
Most maps do not answer to the time question, reflecting the view of the designer rather than the view needed by the user.  This london map considers time instead of space.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Lecture Notes Online

Lecture notes from finance, economics and mathematics.