phiffer.org

Dan Phiffer Dan Phiffer builds websites, makes art, and teaches in NYC

Young Arctic icewww.climate.gov

Each year more and more of the Arctic is comprised of “young ice.”

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This animation tracks the relative amount of ice of different ages from 1987 through early November 2014. The first age class on the scale (1, darkest blue) means “first-year ice,” which formed in the most recent winter. (In other words, it’s in its first year of growth.) The oldest ice (>9, white) is ice that is more than nine years old.

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What should Zoë Keating do about YouTube?zoekeating.tumblr.com

YouTube’s Content ID technology lets a musician take a cut of the advertising that runs on videos using their music, which is great for the Zoë Keatings of the world.

I got started with Content ID a couple of years ago when someone from Youtube reached out to me and I was offered a content management account to “claim” the soundtracks of these videos. The videos are dance performances, documentaries, amateur films, slideshows, animations, art projects, soundtracks to people doing things like skiing, miming, calligraphy or just playing video games. I love the variety of them all. Who knew there could be so many different ways to dance to my music?

Unfortunately this arrangement is changing as YouTube reconfigures itself to become a Spotify competitor. One of the requirements of the new service stipulates that Keating must post her entire catalog to participate.

Is such control too much for an artist to ask for in 2015? It’s one thing for individuals to upload all my music for free listening (it doesn’t bother me). It’s another thing entirely for a major corporation to force me to. I was encouraged to participate and now, after I’m invested, I’m being pressured into something I don’t want to do.

See also: Zoë Keating’s albums on Bandcamp.

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Films for the Student of Philosophywww.openculture.com

I just discovered that the Open Culture weblog has created an addendum to Matt Whitlock’s Essential Movies for a Student of Philosophy list that’s been hanging out in my bookmarks for a couple months.

One extra title that I might suggest is Spike Jonze’s Adaptation, and not just because of the New Yorker magazine connection. I am just a sucker for Charlie Kaufman movies.

See also: 16 mindfuck movies, compiled by Matthew Baldwin.

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Problem Plantsmedium.com

Another Medium post from Ellie, on her weed garden and closing panel at CSAA:

The non-native interlopers who’ve taken up residence in the harsh urban environment of Bushwick aren’t pushing out native species, they’re filling empty niches. Adapted to difficult conditions, with flexible reproductive habits and opportunistic growth patterns, these urban plants are much better-suited to living side by side with Homo sapiens, despite our indifference to (or even aggressive dislike of) them.

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WNYC’s State of the Union bingowww.wnyc.org

WNYC has a bunch of online stuff for tonight’s State of the Union speech. Not sure how I’ll pay attention to the enhanced web stream, the live chat (with the New Yorker’s own Amy Davidson), my Twitter stream, and also keep track of a bingo card, but I’m gonna give it a shot.

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A time to break silencephiffer.org

I did some light maintenance on something I made a few years ago on a previous Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Mainly I replaced the QuickTime embed with the more modern <audio> tag and hooked it up to an interactive transcript. This makes it possible to deep-link into the speech:

We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.

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This was something I built when I was a student at ITP and making one-off web pages. At the time I was doing a daily exercise of creating a novel online artifact, figuring out the best way to express an idea in HTML/CSS/JS.

I’m happy to start tidying & conserving this old code. And glad to have an excuse to meditate on Dr. King’s speech at Riverside Church.

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The Battle for Yesterday’s Nature, Next-Nature, & Whatever Comes After Thatmedium.com

Ellie wrote about the climate debate within the climate movement:

After the failures (Copenhagen) and painfully slow progress (Cancun, Lima) seen at recent U.N. Climate Summits, we know we can’t trust our political leaders to get us there. The mass movement Naomi Klein speaks of shows its face here and there, but in my milieu, I see much more of the infighting, cynicism and turning away. Of course the movement Klein describes has to come from the grass roots level, not from academia, but we can’t just fight the status quo without a solution in mind. As she acknowledges, we need a destination to aim for, and a set of solutions to put in place once we get there.

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What is a border?kottke.org

From Jason Kottke’s weblog:

Today I learned that the US government considers the US border as extending 100 miles into the country. This means that states like Maine, Michigan, and Florida are entirely within the border area and 2/3 of the US population lives within the border.

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In an update to the post he explains that the border is actually more complicated than that. “Precise” and “linear” seem not at all how you would describe how borders actually behave in the world. There’s the 100 mile wide extended border, the functional equivalent border, and within those, the physical terrain where border stops occur and humans start getting involved. What your rights to privacy are in these areas seems pretty open to legal interpretation, and those rights are often abused by border patrol officers.

In addition to the This American Life episode he links to, it also reminds me of the On The Media series about the experience of being detained. It also makes me think of Francis Alÿs’s performance/video The Green Line where he physically traced the “green line” border through Jerusalem using a can of green paint.

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Deep Labvimeo.com

I am a big fan of pretty much all of the women who appear in this video. It’s worth setting aside 18 minutes and listening to what they’ve been up to. There is also a book, available in both pulp and downloadable PDF formats.

It’s heartening to see all-women teams coming together to produce awesome things. More like this, please!

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Random Darknet Shopperfusion.net

Kind of along the lines of Google Will Eat Itself, but for darknet goods:

An automated online shopping bot with a budget of $100 a week in Bitcoin, is programmed to do a very specific task: go to one particular marketplace on the Deep Web and make one random purchase a week with the provided allowance. The purchases have all been compiled for an art show in Zurich … the programmers came home one day to find a shipment of 10 ecstasy pills, followed by an apparently very legit falsified Hungarian passport.

The article is mainly concerned with the question of “is it legal?” This, to me, seems like a terrible metric for an art project.

Link via New Aesthetic