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links for 2010-08-02

  • Injera, sometimes translated to enjera, is a staple Ethiopian bread used in place of forks or spoons to grab globs of food. Here, they make their own out of barley and teff flour (which is gluten free) and it is especially stretchy and porous. Additional injera is rolled and served in baskets, to be unrolled like canned croissant dough to pinch chunks of bright yellow sautéed cabbage. The injera dough is fermented and baked so it comes out like a sourdough crepe of sorts. By itself, it is surprisingly sour but the flavor goes well with the savory courses.
  • But Tumblr is growing quickly. It says it is adding 25,000 new accounts daily, and each month it serves up 1.5 billion page views.

    Items posted on Tumblr can also ripple out to far-flung corners of the Web.

    When The New Yorker posted the Escher-inspired oil-spill-themed cover for its July 5 issue on its Tumblr page, it drew many links from other sites.

    Alexa Cassanos, director of public relations for The New Yorker, which began using the service in late May, said the cover resonated in unlikely places, like the news aggregator Reddit.

    Ms. Cassanos said Tumblr afforded The New Yorker an opportunity to showcase some material that might otherwise get lost online.

    “We can highlight graphic content like photo essays or slide shows to an audience that may not read the magazine,” she said. “You just couldn’t do that, visually, on Twitter or Facebook.”

  • Given the concerns about cybersecurity in the US, it's no surprise the federal government was actively recruiting at Defcon – but we think the anti-authoritarian nature of many Defcon attendees might make that a tough sell.

    The most explosive revelation at the event might not have even been a security vulnerability at all: Chet Uber, director of the secretive private cyber-intelligence organization Project Vigilant, claimed to have personally convinced Adrian Lamo (himself a "Adversary Characterization" analyst for Project Vigilant) to inform the federal government of Bradley Manning's claims regarding the Wikileaks video.

    Jacob Appelbaum, a programmer working closely with the TOR project and WikiLeaks was detained at the US border while returning to the US from the Netherlands. And while at DefCon, he was reportedly approached by FBI agents.

  • …for government workers who have to learn new skills on the job, formal training won't cut it. The knowledge, skills and abilities they need to develop can be found only through informal networks and nontraditional learning efforts. Federal training professionals have to rethink the way they help employees learn new skills. Think "self-help," not "enroll here."

    Indeed, social networking sites have helped foster permanent professional development networks for government workers. For example, some 300 federal professionals interested in enterprise risk management have joined the site FederalERM.com to keep up with the latest developments in that field. GovLoop's 30,000-plus members have created more than 700 groups to help each other do a better job on issues ranging from cybersecurity to human resources to performance measurement.

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