"Her frown lies betwixt two fickle eyes" - Teaching an AI to write Shakespearean Sonnets

by @edent | # # | 1 comment
A pixelated Shakespeare.

For a domain based on Shakespeare - this blog doesn't talk about The Bard much. Sorry! I forced a bot to read 154 Shakespearean Sonnets. This is what it came up with... 47 Be where thou art, thou art the sea, Till all that belongs to it turn aside, And make another land into thy…

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Book Review: A Short History of Myth

by @edent | #
Book cover.

Karen Armstrong's concise yet compelling investigation into the history of myth takes us from the Palaeolithic period and the mythology of the hunters right up to the 'Great Western Transformation' of the last 500 years. She shows us that the history of myth is the history of humanity, and our stories and beliefs, our curiosity and attempts to understand the world, link us to our ancestors and each other.

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Stop adding email tracking links to phone numbers!

by @edent | # # # # | 6 comments | Read ~8,522 times.
Gmail showing the tel URl scheme of a link with extra tracking information in it.

My Chinese takeaway delivery was late. Very late. I flipped open the confirmation email sent by Just-Eat to double-check I had all the details correct. At the bottom was a "click to call" link. Hurrah! I clicked dial, and this is what filled my screen: An absurdly long phone number. Bemused, I went to inspect…

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Book Review: The Pursuit of William Abbey

by @edent | #
A man trapped in a maze.

A young and naive English doctor, William Abbey, witnesses the lynching of a local boy by the white colonists. As the child dies, his mother curses William. William begins to understand what the curse means when the shadow of the dead boy starts following him across the world. It never stops, never rests. It can cross oceans and mountains. And if it catches him, the person he loves most in the world will die.

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Technology, Interrupted

by @edent | # | 2 comments
A woman wearing headphones.

Here's a brilliant idea I had. And it would work if humans weren't garbage. I was sat on a stationary train. It had stopped for some unfathomable reason. I say "unfathomable" - the driver made an announcement over the speaker system, but I didn't hear it because I had my Bluetooth headphones on. Imagine if…

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Book Review: The Memory Illusion

by @edent | # | 1 comment
A pair of spectables in front of a blank face.

In The Memory Illusion, forensic psychologist and memory expert Dr Julia Shaw draws on the latest research to show why our memories so often play tricks on us - and how, if we understand their fallibility, we can actually improve their accuracy. The result is an exploration of our minds that both fascinating and unnerving, and that will make you question how much you can ever truly know about yourself.

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Turn an old eReader into an Information Screen (Nook STR)

by @edent | # # # # # # | 11 comments | Read ~7,084 times.
Nook with a train display.

Here's a quick tutorial for turning an old Nook into a passive display. This is an update to my 2013 post End Result An eInk screen which displays the trains I can catch from my local station. It shows the next few available trains, and whether they're delayed. It also shows how long until the…

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Book Review: Sapience

by @edent | # #
Jupiter looms.

What kind of life will we find in the depths of Europa's Oceans? What kind of life will we allow an AI with human level intelligence? The ten stories in Sapience: A Collection of Science Fiction Short Stories explore these questions and many more.

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Coming Out Stories

by @edent | 4 comments | Read ~218 times.

The scene: post-conference, sat in an airport, one dark winter's morning. I'm casually chatting to one of the other speakers about our mutual hate of being sat in an airport this early. His phone rings and he excuses himself to answer it. My German is pretty rusty, but good enough to understand "...Yes, I am…

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Book Review: Alone Together

by @edent | # #
People staring at their phones.

Technology has become the architect of our intimacies. Online, we fall prey to the illusion of companionship, gathering thousands of Twitter and Facebook friends, and confusing tweets and wall posts with authentic communication. But this relentless connection leads to a deep solitude. MIT professor Sherry Turkle argues that as technology ramps up, our emotional lives ramp down.

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