Bitly’s dataset, wrangled by data scientists Hilary Mason and Anna Smith, consists of every click on every Bitly link on the Web. Bitly makes its data available publicly—just add ‘+’ to the end of any Bitly link to see how many clicks it’s gotten. For Bitly’s collaboration with Forbes, Smith and Mason looked for news sources and individual articles that were unusually popular in certain states compared to national averages. The interactive map starts by showing which news source dominates in each state by this measure: the Washington Post in Virginia and Maryland, the Chicago Tribune in Illinois, and so on.
You can also select news sources to their click distributions across the country.
I like how The Onion leads in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and New Mexico, although I’d be interested to know what other news sources the states read. A color scale might be informative, too.
Using a computational model called Estimating the Circulation and Climate of the Ocean, Phase II (ECCO2), the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio (I think NASA has a thing for long names.) visualizes surface currents around the world. This is beautiful science here. Make sure you turn on high-def and go full screen.
Hilton Worldwide and Schiphol Real Estate, Schiphol Group’s real estate subsidiary, have today signed an agreement to introduce a new landmark 433 guest room Hilton Hotels & Resorts hotel to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, to be designed by prominent Dutch architects, Mecanoo. The new cube-shaped building, which will feature rounded edges and a diamond-shaped façade with diagonal lines, has been designed with a view to it becoming an airport landmark. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Courtesy of Mecanoo
Plans for the hotel, a development and investment by Schiphol Real Estate and managed by Hilton, were drawn up to meet increasing market demand and match the high quality standards of Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Facilities are set to include a ballroom and 23 meeting rooms, speciality restaurant and bar, executive lounge, spa and fitness center, light-filled atrium lobby and underground parking offering 138 parking spaces. A new sheltered walkway will also connect hotel guests directly to the international airport terminal.
Courtesy of Mecanoo
The new hotel, which will replace the current Hilton property, will be situated in a prominent location alongside the access roads to the international airport terminal, near to the existing Hilton hotel which remain in operation until the opening of the new hotel, and demolished upon the new opening. It is expected to open in 2015, with construction scheduled to start later in 2012.
We likes The Wire. We likes reading about The Wire.
1. Aaron Bady, of The New Inquiry, earns a ‘tie-today’s-story-to-The-Wire’ badge by thoughtfully comparing the recent revelations about Mike Daisey’s one man show to Jimmy McNulty serial killer creation in Season 5. People as a whole don’t end up looking too hot when Bady is done with us.
After all, Jimmy McNulty’s problem is not only that he’s an unscrupulous narcissist, but that he combines that quality with a streak of good intentions, a kind of idealism and desire to do some version of the right thing. Cynics and fatalists wouldn’t fall into this trap, because they’ve never expected the world to be different, or never imagined that they could change it.
(via e-migo @djacobs who accurately referred to the above piece of deep analysis + Apple + The Wire as #kottkebait)
2. David Simon, creator of The Wire, recently penned a story worth reading for The Baltimore Sun about the recent health issues of Baltimore cop Gene Cassidy. Cassidy was shot twice in the head, and the investigation and prosecution of this shooting is the basis for Simon’s 1991 ‘Homicide’.
But grocery stores have not rebounded in the same way. Before the storm, there were 30 in New Orleans; today, there are 21. Most that have reopened are in wealthier neighborhoods: a Tulane University survey in 2007, the latest data available, found that nearly 60 percent of low-income residents had to travel more than three miles to reach a supermarket, though only 58 percent owned a car.
Bonus: Last week Omar Little was crowned The Wire’s best character in Grantland’s tournament. Jason is reportedly disconsolate. Even though he didn’t make the tournament, my allegiance was to Slim Charles for that one scene. You know the one.
And a Kima update, too. Sonja Sohn recently spoke with NPR about ReWired for Change, a nonprofit she founded with Pierce and Michael K. Williams that attempts to cut down on crime with arts and mentoring programs.
When Startup Garage Nairobi opened its doors last month in the Kenyan capital, it became the latest such facility to launch in Africa. According to the crowdsourced BongoHive’s “Hubs in Africa" map, there are 45 tech hubs, tech labs, business incubators and hacker spaces on the continent.
Although the Innovation Hub in Pretoria, South Africa opened in 2002 and the Botswana Innovation Hub opened in Gabarone, Botswana in 2006, the overwhelming majority of Africa’s hubs have launched since 2010. Why this surge in hacking and the commensurate creation of support facilities for them? It’s time.
After studying players like LeBron James and Blake Griffin, many analysts are now suggesting that there are new positions, which are simply hybrids of the one’s we already had. For example, some players are now labeled “point-forwards” or “combo-guards.” But what if we were wrong about our initial five positions. Maybe a “Center” is just a label for people over a certain height, and there are actually three different types of big men in the NBA.
An analysis, done with data exploration tool Ayasdi Iris, provided 13 possible positions, as shown above. Nodes and edges are colored by points per minute on a blue (low) to red (high) scale.
So for example, those typically classified as centers or power forwards are classified as scoring rebounders, paint protectors, and scoring paint protectors. Dirk Nowitzki might be considered a scoring rebounder, whereas Joakim Noah is a paint protector.
The point? Hopefully teams can use this information to make better decisions about who to trade and draft. Of course, I’m sure scouts know about these fuzzy positions already, so I think the next step is to look at what positions the best teams have and had, and more importantly, how a “one-of-a-kind” player can change everything.
I just finished a series of illustrations for a small project the office is working on in Honduras. The project is a memorial, therefore we wanted the illustrations to take on a meditative and quiet atmosphere. Two renderings were created of the same view to explain the different lighting scenarios a visitor would experience both during the day and the night.
The workflow used for these two images are similar to what I use for many of the illustrations on this site. Because I wanted the illustrations to have a “painted” look, I didn’t overlay Sketchup linework like I normally do. Instead, I spent more time layering textures and manually painting in Photoshop.
Although I didn’t show the linework as an overlay in the final image, I still like to keep it as a separate layer in my Photoshop files so that I can use it to make quick selections with the Magic Wand Tool.
Sketchup Model Textures
The above image shows what kind of textures and detail level the Sketchup model contained. As you can see, the textures are basic. I knew going into these illustrations that applying textures in Photoshop was going to make or break the final result.
The Kerkythea rendering is the image I began with for the illustrations. I tend not to spend too much time tweaking the settings in hopes of getting a perfect rendering. This kills too much time. For this view, I really only focused on getting the shadows to render correctly and give the floor reflections. The darkness didn’t bother me because I knew this would be fixed in Photoshop.
For these illustrations, correct textures were really important. I did not spend too much time adding textures in the 3D model because it is almost impossible to avoid the “tiling effect”. Instead, I extracted stucco finishes right out of photos of local Honduras buidlings. Also in this step, I took the smudge tool to rough up the polished concrete floor and spent time using the burn and dodge tools to punch up the shadows and highlights.
The last step was to add color overlays. For this particular rendering, I probably had 5 or 6 different color overlays. For example, over by the doors, I used a soft white overlay to fade the trees in the background and brighten the light entering the space. I used a yellow overlay on the right side where the light is washing the wall to warm this area up. Over the entire image, I used a light orange overlay. Each of these layers are serving a particular purpose, however they all bleed into each other bringing a level of cohesiveness to the overall image.
The above images are property of Paul Lukez Architecture. More information on this project can be found at www.lukez.com
The house is located on a historical agricultural plot amidst hayfields and woods in a nature reserve, a – for Dutch standards – hilly area. Although the plot has been overrun with small trees in time, it still bears the original character of the open field.
To minimize disturbance of the landscape and as a reference to the surrounding hilly terrain, the house is embedded in an artificial hill. At the same time, this answered the client’s demand for keeping his ecological footprint with the house to a minimum. The embedding in the hill simultaneously functions as camouflage and as a blanket, hiding the house from view from the north side and using the earth as thermal insulation. One enters the house through cuts in the mountain, sided with panels of slowly corroding scrap steel.
On the south side, the house has been opened to a maximum. The grand glass facade is framed in timber,which guides the transition from the artificial to the natural. The canopy regulates sunshine through the seasons and allows for a large terrace along the full width of the house. The terrace follows the split level of the ground floor, jumps up to the higher west façade creating a henhouse underneath. Finally, it curls back up to become the canopy.
The frame is constructed out of lark wood, forested from the immediate surroundings and therefore making it a hyperlocal use of material. Detailing creates a seamless transition between the interior and the exterior: the concrete floor, window frames and terrace finishing are all flush and continuous from inside to outside.
The spatial structure of the house is a rectangular 12 x 19 meter open space. Steel cross the entire 12 meter width allowing great flexibility to the interior arrangement. Inside the hall-like space, the rooms are stacked in a disorderly manner and built out of light wooden structures, facilitating easy implementation of possible future changes. The interior can evolve along with its inhabitants, a young family, rooms being added or removed through time.
There is a binary spatial experience in the house. Either you are in a room, with a cave-like atmosphere, daylight coming to you through deep cuts in the mountain – or you are in the large open space in front of the stacked rooms. This large space is oriented towards the 90 m2 glass facade which offers a spectacular view of the surrounding woods.
The contrast between shell and rooms is clearly visible. The concrete wall, needed to retain the mass of the mountain, is left unfinished. The welding joints of the steel spans are visible and the wood is untreated. Within this rough shell of untreated construction materials, the stack of rooms tells a completely different story: every room is finished by the inhabitants in a unique and colorful way, which expresses the individuality of the boxes.
The design is an experiment in sustainable strategies in both architecture – the hardware – and the technical installations – the software – which have been designed by Arup Amsterdam. The software concept consists of photovoltaics, LED lighting, wood pellet heating in combination with low temperature heating, CO2 monitored ventilation, a grey water circuit and the use of smart domotics. The result is a house in which the total amount of energy produced exceeds its consumption: excess energy can be used for a electric car.
The house is bold and unpredictable: an experiment in sustainable strategies in concept, structure, material and technical installations. A house that blends quietly in its surroundings, but stands out with spatial surprises.
I just came back from my first run after totally breaking myself at weightlifting class. For almost two full days I made oofing noises when going down the stairs or lifting my arms, and even had to do that thing where you freefall the last few inches to the toilet seat because the quadriceps say NOPE, WE’RE DONE. You can think you’re all bad-ass because you run three days a week and do yoga for the other four, but all it takes is a barbell and some plates to show you what a pantywaist creampuff you really are.
The class was fun, and it would be cool to start doing more weightlifting, but I was a little put off at the end of class when one woman said to me, “I had a lot of trouble with lunges when I started too.” First of all, creepy that you were watching me that closely, creeper. Second, fuck you man I wasn’t having “trouble”! Well okay a little. But see point one!
I made polite friendly noises and she added a bunch of slightly odd, AA-inspired stuff about the class—like, “This is really worth making time for” and “Keep coming back!” I know, I know: I should not be such a crab, she was just being encouraging and nice. But encouraging and nice makes me uncomfortable. Aren’t I awful? Deficient in decent human spirit AND weak of limb.
MY STUPID ACTIONS
Another thing I just did—I thought my electric kettle smelled kind of strange. So right after I poured all the boiling water into my tea cup I lifted the kettle’s lid and took a big sniff, getting a full blast of face-steam and foggy glasses in the process. Good for the pores, bad for the vision, and how could I have not anticipated that? Lactic acid has gone to my brain.
STUPID FINANCIAL DECISIONS
Well, maybe more sad than stupid—I saw an ad on the train that asked if you were “in too deep” with payday loans, and offered a consolidation service. Holy cats. Don’t people in that kind of trouble just default on those anyway? You can’t be all that concerned about your credit rating if you’re haunting the payday loan places.
NOT THE LEAST BIT STUPID
I need to brag on my kid a bit. After her first Girls on the Run practice, she was raving about how fun it was, and she said, “I like it so much! Thank you for signing me up.”
I got kind of misty about that because: niceness! And not just nice, smart enough/old enough to realize that a parent was the one who really made it happen, with a consent form and a check for an enrollment fee, and to remember that and give thanks for it just seems unusually considerate for a nine-year-old. Although this is my first and only nine-year-old, so maybe I’m wrong.
I may just be high on Nora right now because for some third-grade thought experiment about “If You Ran For President”* she answered the questions, “Who would you pick for your speechwriter? Who would be your campaign manager?” with “My mom for both because she is good with words and very organized.” Why thank you!
*Nora cannot be president anyway, of course, as she was not born in the United States. I think that should probably be changed, but let’s all wait until Schwarzenegger dies, yes?
Here is President Nora demonstrating how a well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed:
That was at a fishing expo in some suburban outdoorsy store. We bought her the hat but not the gun.
This may sound creepy, but tens of thousands of patients around the world are already sharing information about symptoms and treatments for hundreds of conditions on websites such as PatientsLikeMe and CureTogether. This has yielded valuable results, such as the finding that patients who suffered from vertigo during migraines were four times more likely to have painful side effects when using a particular migraine drug. The growing number of self-tracking devices now reaching the market will increase the scope for large-scale data collection, enabling users to analyse their own readings and aggregate them with those of other people.
Sure, it sounds nerdy and weird when you put it like that, but make it glow and call it fuel, and everyone goes nuts.
1. I am the one who takes down all the cutesy passive-aggressive bathroom notes at work and throws them away. I’m sorry, but when I am washing my hands I do not need to read “Please Pick Up Your Dishes, This Is NOT A Hotel! [smiley face]” or “Ladies: If You Sprinkle When You Tinkle, Please Be Neat And Wipe The Seat [more smiley faces].” I don’t care that you spent work time selecting a lovely font and centering each line and printing it out and taping it to the mirror. Into the trash it goes!
2. I always push the “double speed” button during all the little in-between musical bits of podcasts, and I almost always think the music sounds better that way. I make fun of LT and his love for hyperactive cocaine ukulele jazz from the 1930s but maybe he is on to something.
3. Can you just have “qualms” or do you have to have qualms about something? Can qualms be intransitive? Can’t I have just plain old qualms? One side of qualms, please.
4. I did not realize until I started comparing notes with my parent-friends just how many schools say the Pledge of Allegiance in an organized way, all in a group. Nora’s school does not and I am thankful for that, because something about professing allegiance in a group gives me hives. It is not just the “under God” part (although that gives me DOUBLE HIVES); it is more that group pledging is very, very close to group prayer.
5. And the thing is, I *do* pledge allegiance, if not literally to the flag (I get that the author was speaking metonymically, but it still seems like a weird phrase), but to the idea and reality of America, which for all its shitton of fuckedupedness is still, in a deep and real and complex way, mine.
6. For example: my crazy cat Rocko, who seems like a really terrible, nasty, and inconvenient animal, but he’s mine. Which sounds like I’m saying, “Oh once you get to know him you’ll see his good points,” which is true but also sort of a side issue since his bad points are pretty damn bad. But he is still my cat. Rocko IS America!
7. Do you love me like crazy? Are you going to say some things, and then I’ll say some things, and then we’re done? Okay then, let me tell you the story of how I finally left behind my Diet Coke addiction.
8. I was down to only drinking one Diet Coke a day, but that one-a-day was the most shameful one of all—the morning Diet Coke. I don’t know why that bugged me so much, except maybe that I felt like I had no control over it. Any other time of the day I had no trouble with “just water, please” but mornings— my mouth all sleep-gross and my eyes barely open—always found me padding down to the basement (oooh, metaphor!) fridge to get that cursed can. Even if the night before I had sternly told myself that I would make tea or drink juice or grab a beer (kidding), or do anything but pop the top on the container of caramel color + neurotoxins, the morning would come and I could not help myself.
9. None of the accepted stop-drinking-soda wisdom (fizzy water! green tea! diluted juice! blah blah!) ever worked for me until it clicked that what I wanted from Diet Coke was acidity. Carbonation and caffeine are entirely secondary to the blast of acid that cleaned out my mouth like the 5-0’s jump-out boys clean up a drug corner.
10. (I want to take that comparison a LOT further, and craft a highly-acclaimed cable television drama about the war between oral bacteria and the forces of fluoride in a troubled city called Mouth, and how acid substances like coffee and Diet Coke seem to vanquish bacteria temporarily but are in actuality bad for the teeth [read: ordinary citizens, moral fiber], but the bureaucracy goes for the quick fix over long-lasting dental health. Do you think there might be intellectual-property lawsuits there?)
11. Anyway, once I figured that out I started drinking a huge glass of water with a LOT of lemon juice squeezed into it right after getting up and, three days later, no more cola-flavored monkey on my back. Plus I get to feel all smug and faux-healthy, like I am doing some ridiculous Gwyneth Paltrow-esque “cleansing” ritual when I get my easy peasy lemon squeezy on. For a while I was even drinking this crazy Whole Foods apple cider vinegar/honey beverage made by Bragg’s (with their irritating Christian fish symbol right on the bottle and everything), but then I started feeling stupid because it has three cheap-ass ingredients and surely I can make it myself. I have not yet gotten the proportions right but I will keep trying.
12. So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. And as long as I am being opinionated about the Pledge of Allegiance and bathroom etiquette notes and acidity as THE ONE TRUE WAY TO GET OFF DRUGS, I will also be opinionated about music and say you should listen to The Grates, Ni Hao, early Cars, Couch, Mogwai, Eat Skull, the David Bowie album “Reality,” Wild Flag, The Phenomenal Handclap Band, Cypress Hill, and avant-garde cellist Okkyung Lee.
—mimi smartypants wants to know: are those Bugle Boy jeans you’re wearing?