Friday, April 21, 2017

A decade of blogging

A decade ago today I posted Mass-market scholarly communication to start this blog. Now, 459 posts later I would like to thank everyone who has read and especially those who have commented on it.

Blogging is useful to me for several reasons:
  • It forces me to think through issues.
  • It prevents me forgetting what I thought when I thought through an issue.
  • Its a much more effective way to communicate with others in the same field than publishing papers.
  • Since I'm not climbing the academic ladder there's not much incentive for me to publish papers anyway, although I have published quite a few since I started LOCKSS.
  • I've given quite a few talks too. Since I started posting the text of a talk with links to the sources it has become clear that it is much more useful to readers than posting the slides.
  • I use the comments as a handy way to record relevant links, and why I thought they were relevant.
There weren't  a lot of posts until in 2011 I started to target one post a week. I thought it would be hard to come up with enough topics, but pretty soon afterwards half-completed or note-form drafts started accumulating. My posting rate has accelerated smoothly since, and most weeks now get two posts. Despite this, I have more drafts lying around than ever.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Emularity strikes again!

The Internet Archive's massive collection of software now includes an in-browser emulation in the Emularity framework of the original Mac with MacOS from 1984 to 1989, and a Mac Plus with MacOS 7.0.1 from 1991. Shaun Nichols at The Register reports that:
The emulator itself is powered by a version of Hampa Hug's PCE Apple emulator ported to run in browsers via JavaScript by James Friend. PCE and PCE.js have been around for a number of years; now that tech has been married to the Internet Archive's vault of software.
Congratulations to Jason Scott and the software archiving team!

Thursday, April 13, 2017


This is just a brief note to point out that, after a long hiatus, my friend Jim Gettys has returned to blogging with Home products that fix/mitigate bufferbloat, an invaluable guide to products that incorporate some of the very impressive work undertaken by the bufferbloat project, CeroWrt, and the LEDE WiFi driver. The queuing problems underlying bufferbloat, the "lag" that gamers complain about and other performance issues at the edge of the Internet can make home Internet use really miserable. It has taken appallingly long for the home router industry to start shipping products with even the initial fixes released years ago. But a trickle of products is now available, and it is a great service for Jim to point at them.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Identifiers: A Double-Edged Sword

This is the last of my posts from CNI's Spring 2017 Membership Meeting. Predecessors are Researcher Privacy, Research Access for the 21st Century, and The Orphans of Scholarship.

Geoff Bilder's Open Persistent Identifier Infrastructures: The Key to Scaling Mandate Auditing and Assessment Exercises was ostensibly a report on the need for and progress in bringing together the many disparate identifier systems for organizations in order to facilitate auditing and assessment processes. It was actually an insightful rant about how these processes were corrupting the research ecosystem. Below the fold, I summarize Geoff's argument (I hope Geoff will correct me if I misrepresent him) and rant back.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Orphans of Scholarship

This is the third of my posts from CNI's Spring 2017 Membership Meeting. Predecessors are Researcher Privacy and Research Access for the 21st Century.

Herbert Van de Sompel, Michael Nelson and Martin Klein's To the Rescue of the Orphans of Scholarly Communication reported on an important Mellon-funded project to investigate how all the parts of a research effort that appear on the Web other than the eventual article might be collected for preservation using Web archiving technologies. Below the fold, a summary of the 67-slide deck and some commentary.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Research Access for the 21st Century

This is the second of my posts from CNI's Spring 2017 Membership Meeting. The first is Researcher Privacy.

Resource Access for the 21st Century, RA21 Update: Pilots Advance to Improve Authentication and Authorization for Content by Elsevier's Chris Shillum and Ann Gabriel reported on the effort by the oligopoly publishers to replace IP address authorization with Shibboleth. Below the fold, some commentary.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Researcher Privacy

The blog post I was drafting about the sessions I found interesting at the CNI Spring 2017 Membership Meeting got too long, so I am dividing it into a post per interesting session. First up, below the fold, perhaps the most useful breakout session. Sam Kome's Protect Researcher Privacy in the Surveillance Era, an updated version of his talk at the 2016 ALA meeting, led to animated discussion.