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links for 2010-07-30

  • Social media is emerging as a cottage industry for electronic evidence. It is now playfully referred to as an electronic “permanent record” in this era of Wikileaks.

    “It just makes for a beautiful exhibit, and there’s no longer any question about what was said,” says Cassandra Ferrannini, an employment law attorney with the Sacramento law firm Downey Brand. Conversations are displayed complete with date and timestamps. Some conversational snippets show up in context, others out of context.

    Labor and employment attorneys are aggressively using Facebook and other social media outlets. All areas of litigation and investigation are using social media to find and vet witnesses, for subpoena and impeachment reasons. There is even an iPhone App for background checks, which reports the usual demographic information and also includes social media activity.

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links for 2010-07-29

  • “What are some of the business processes and governance issues related to creation of communities? Should organizations let users create their own communities without imposing governance and should there be some formality associated with it. Organizations do impose some kind of governance on creation of Team Sites. Should that model carry over to the creation of communities? There surely will be an impact on adoption if users need to get approval from some higher authority to create communities on their own. Is there a happy medium?”
    The topic tends to be polarizing and most people I meet are firmly in one camp or the other. (I used to be in one camp and then I switched – does that make me the Arlen Specter of Enterprise 2.0?) There are pros and cons to each philosophy and each one needs its own governance model.
  • DAVID DUNNING: Well, my specialty is decision-making. How well do people make the decisions they have to make in life? And I became very interested in judgments about the self, simply because, well, people tend to say things, whether it be in everyday life or in the lab, that just couldn’t possibly be true. And I became fascinated with that. Not just that people said these positive things about themselves, but they really, really believed them. Which led to my observation: if you’re incompetent, you can’t know you’re incompetent.

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links for 2010-07-28

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links for 2010-07-27

  • World Bank publishes an annual index (here) that ranks countries by how easy it is to do business (Singapore was #1 in case you were wondering). The index incorporates factors like the number of procedures, costs, and time needed to comply across different aspects of the red-tape businesses must navigate (employing workers, filing taxes, getting construction permits, etc). Unfortunately, the burden of this red-tape falls more heavily on small businesses than large. According to the SBA (in this report) it costs 45 percent more per employee for small firms to comply than larger firms. Which means (unsurprisingly), red-tape hinders one crucial engine of most economies — small business growth.
  • A Good Company was selected as the winner of Sunlight Labs' Design For America contest in the Redesign of a .Gov Website category. The designers tackled the Internal Revenue Service site. Take a look at the current IRS.gov site and compare it to the redesigned site created by the two designers, Micah and Caroline. Pretty amazing transformation!
  • This weekend the twitterverse erupted with opinions about Google sponsoring female students to attend JSConf. As a woman who is often the only-woman-in-the-room, I want people to know it isn’t always easy. I was a bit shocked by the blatant failure to empathize. Google is correcting for women being less likely to stand up and say “me, me, me!”, not for their technical skills or development prowess. Thinking that I got where I am because I’m a woman and got special treatment (rather than on my own merit) is a painful and insidious form of discrimination. You have to be thick skinned to make it in a field where this kind of thing happens frequently. YES. It happens frequently. What I’m trying to say is that women face a special challenge in tech because their male counterparts, when feeling jealous, will tend to pin female geek’s success on their gender. We face another problem, when we begin to wonder ourselves, and doubt our own abilities. This is the last refuge of the bigot indeed.
  • Soundflower is a MacOS system extension that allows applications to pass audio to other applications. Soundflower is easy to use, it simply presents itself as an audio device, allowing any audio application to send and receive audio with no other support needed.
  • is list is an early draft of top competencies needed to become a social media-literate librarian. Murphy & Moulaison (2009) have written a fine document on this topic, and related the framework back to the ACRL information literacy competencies.

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links for 2010-07-26

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links for 2010-07-25

  • July 2010 The results are in and Design C received the most votes. Design C will be used to proceed, with minor modifications based on usability testing and user feedback.
  • You may have noticed the more infrequent updating of EduDemic and EduDatum over the past week or two. That’s because our (small) crack squad of designers and developers have been hard at work creating something due to popular demand. It’s a new educational social network that’s free, easy to use like Facebook, and open to educators, education administrators, students, and other like-minded people who have a passion for learning.

    Look again, this isn't Facebook!
    Socially Learning

    The new social network is called Socially Learning and features a robust set of tools to help you meet teachers, tweachers (we love that word it turns out!), and other new friends. You can even join regional groups where people from your area are conversing, sharing information, and perhaps even planning a meet-up.

  • Companies selling DNA kits have been deceiving customers with "fictitious" and "misleading" medical advice, an undercover sting operation by Congressional watchdog the GAO has discovered. One of the companies, 23andMe, was co-founded by Mrs Sergey Brin – Anne Wojowcki – and boasts veteran Silicon Valley socialite Esther Dyson as a director. All the companies investigated have been referred to the Food and Drugs Administration and the Federal Trade Commission for "appropriate action".

    The GAO investigation [summary – text] titled Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Tests: Misleading Test Results Are Further Complicated by Deceptive Marketing and Other Questionable Practices sent DNA samples to four companies, and followed up with undercover calls for medical advice.

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links for 2010-07-23

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links for 2010-07-21

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links for 2010-07-20

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links for 2010-07-19

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