Prosecutors from the office of District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr., who initially were emphatic about the strength of the case and the account of the victim, plan to tell the court on Friday that they “have problems with the case” based on what their investigators have discovered, and will disclose more details of their findings to the defense.
“It is a mess, a mess on both sides,” the official said.
According to the two law enforcement officials, the woman had a phone conversation with an incarcerated man within a day of her encounter with Mr. Strauss Kahn in which she discussed the possible benefits of pursing the charges against him. The conversation was recorded.
At exactly 4pm this afternoon, a creaking of chairs could be heard across the 3rd floor of 36 Cooper Square, and then an eerie silence as over 50 union employees and sympathizers walked off the job at the Village Voice, as a sign of dissatisfaction over the lack of movement by management at the bargaining table. The contract expires tonight at midnight.
Many of the walk-outs wore t-shirts emblazoned with a quote from Norman Mailer, one of the Village Voice founders: “Revolutions are the periods when individuals count most.”
After 30 minutes of spontaneous speeches, and the general consensus that the employees can’t keep working if the final offer by management will result in a reduction of their wages, they returned to work.
It is tempting for a nation and for a society to feel overwhelmed by all this. Today’s Egypt should not. These are all surmountable challenges, especially if the country retains its unity, commonality of purpose, and purity of aspiration.
It may also be tempting for some of you here to feel powerless, believing that your own potential contributions pale in comparison to these significant societal challenges. You should not.
Every single one of you has the ability to make a difference in today’s Egypt. Indeed, many of you already do so, day in and day out.
You maintain the momentum for positive change. You work hard to counter the huge disparities in income and wealth, and the extremes in access to education, health and other basic social needs. And you are unwilling — and rightly so — to see millions of your countrymen and countrywomen condemned to a life of poverty, human degradation and despair.
All of you are facilitators of a better tomorrow for Egypt, of the “new Egypt.”
“Let’s obsess about what is best for the end user. We often make product decisions based on strategic alignment, partner requests or even legal advice — the end user doesn’t care. We simply have to admit that Apple is nailing this and it is one of the reasons they have people lining up overnight at stores around the world, and products sold out for months. These people aren’t hypnotized zombies, they simply love beautifully designed products that are user centric and work how they are supposed to work. Android has a major weakness — it will always lack the simplicity and elegance that comes with end-to-end device software, middleware and hardware control. We really have a great opportunity to build something new and “uniquely BlackBerry” with the QNX platform.”—An open letter to Blackberry bosses
“Early adopters” are a myth to me. They can praise a new product or service, speculate or critique it, but the real people that matter are all narcissistic — they don’t tweet about what they’re doing online, they tweet about the things they’re doing in the physical world, they post pictures with friends at clubs or sports games or concerts, they invite people to their birthday parties and BBQs, they let you know who they’re fucking (or not fucking anymore) with a status update of a little pink heart and want to do it all with as little digital friction as possible. So the attempt to create digital metaphors for human interaction (Hangouts and Huddles on Google+) is as tired and convoluted as a rappin’ toothbrush selling Crest because the American Dental Association thinks they “get it,” it doesn’t simplify or solve any problem for the average person, it’s just more complexity and wasted time. Facebook and Twitter are successful because they didn’t try to create online equivalents for what we do the real world with catchy names and bad social analogies — they are successful because they extended communities and relationships online with very simple tools: photos, events, chat… social concepts that don’t require a guided video tour.
Creating an online community may work for the Mashables of the world, the Seth Godins and Robert Scobles who make a living as tech pundits, but it will never catch on with real people. Honestly, if you need to make a video (or series of videos!) explaining how a website works, you’ve already lost.
“Today television news is watched more often than people read newspapers, than people listen to the radio, than people read or gather any other form of communication. The reason: People are lazy. With television you just sit—watch—listen. The thinking is done for you.”—Roger Ailes in a Gawker exclusive: Roger Ailes’ Secret Nixon-Era Blueprint for Fox News
My recent brief experience with Google+ (or plus.google, as the URL says in reverse polish) has led me to some observations about how we might be shifting our personal and collective use of tools, and thereby our sense of self in the increasingly media-augmented world we inhabit.
Google+ is a suite of social tools sharing a common core. At the heart of that core is the user’s profile, which acts as a key to open the Google door, on one hand, and on the other as a handle so that others can choose to interact with us. Google+ offers us a collection of user experiences, such a reviewing other folk’s profiles, reading and commenting in streams, and entering into other, more specialized contexts for interaction, like the video-chat Hangouts.
Leaving aside the specifics of whether or not the Hangouts stream fast enough, or the way Google+ does or does not do allow us to share audio or not, one thing is clear: Life is a mosaic, not a monolithGoogle+ is designed to support many different tools on top of the basic social framework that underlies the system.
I think Google has taken a giant step forward, in that regard. Although Google+ is currently a browser-based experience, and one that will run in any browser, the company has positioned itself for the world just over the horizon. And what is that world?
The future of computing will not be based on a unitary, all-encompassing user experience, where we use a sprawling, general purpose social context to interact with others. Life is a mosaic, not a monolithOur online lives will soon be based on using dozens of disparate, highly focused applications, like those that Google+ provides.
Life is a mosaic, not a monolith.
I find myself using more extremely narrow applications instead of general ones.
I enjoy Instagram because it is fun and focused on the social sharing of pictures, and I increasingly use Flickr as a repository. Instagram is a comic book, and Flickr is the Library of Congress.
I like using Path’s new With app, where I simply post that I am with someone, and take a picture of them (optionally) wherever it is that we are together. I found that Hashable’s elaborate syntax for various sorts of encounters, and it’s relatively clumsy integration into Twitter, more of a puzzle than a benefit, so I stopped using it.
Even with something like my calendar, I find that I am growing more tolerant of a mosaic instead of a monolith. I long ago switched to Tripit for travel tracking, and their iPhone app is where I go to check details on my travel arrangements, not my general purpose calendar. Likewise, I use Plancast to track conferences I plan to attend. I have subscriptions to these services show up in my Google calendar, but those are secondary, and I often have them unselected.
I am using Simplenote for note keeping, and there is a clever app called NoteTask that allows me to manage a todo list within Simplenote. But I am also managing notes on my contacts within Rapportive, which integrates with Gmail.
I am also testing out a new app called Diacarta, which provides a very ideographic way of thinking about your day, shown to the right. You pick icons to represent the sort of activity you are going to be involved in, and you attach it to the central watchface to indicate time. Here you see three activities, one which was a webinar, and two meetings involving different sorts of beverages.
But I don’t want to be sidetracked by the specific reasons for adopting these tools over others, except to make the case that my natural drift — and I think other people’s too, in time — will be away from massive all-in-one tools, and toward a mosaic of highly specialized apps.
Behind this are a pair of twinned trends, major threads in the liquid media theme I have been developing over the past months.
The first is the transition toward connected apps, courtesy of the rise of genius mobile devices (genius = way beyond smart), like the With, Diacarta, and Simplenote apps I mentioned.
The flipside of the rise of apps is the fall of the browser. The browser is a kludge, a way to shoehorn the web onto PCs, made necessary because the operating systems around when the web was invented were inward focused: they were all about applications, files and folders on the hard drive. But we have gone far enough toward always-on that we will have dozens of web-aware and web-dependent apps on our genius devices, and only occasionally open the browser for old-time website browsing.
Apps are the tiles of the new mosaic, our composite life on line.
And Google+ is a deft straddle, with one foot in the old world and the other in the new. Google+ is currently a browser based system, but it is relatively easy to imagine the core functionality implemented in a next generation Android, and all the tools running as apps on top. Circles and Hangouts accessed as complementary apps, along with dozens or hundreds of others, built by Google or a growing ecology of developers.
Of course, Apple will respond in kind, and is perhaps a step or two ahead with its Twitter partnership, and its plan to integrate Twitter into iOS 5. So we can expect a similar flowering of iOS 5 apps that build on a core of social capabilities, and that will allow app developers to leverage profiles, following, streams, and other foundational social componentry at the OS level.
By lowering the core elements of sociality into the infrastructure, Google and Apple will be setting the stage for a new generation of app development, and therefore, user experience. Which will mean an acceleration of the transition for us, as users, from monolith to mosaic.
Google+ shows that Google is going to make that transition, and it will be Apple and Google that will be defining the next ten years of the social revolution, as a result. Facebook and Microsoft may be fated to fall into each others arms, just to catch up, or survive at all.
In human terms, 224,000 to 258,000 people have died directly from warfare, including 125,000 civilians in Iraq. Many more have died indirectly, from the loss of clean drinking water, healthcare, and nutrition. An additional 365,000 have been wounded and 7.8 million people — equal to the combined population of Connecticut and Kentucky — have been displaced.
I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but I need your help. I am in the final stages of my Masters degree, and I’m writing my thesis on lolcats. Specifically, why people like them. To do this, I am holding focus groups of lolcat lovers.
Here’s where you come in: I need to speak to lolcat lovers who live in London. I know the Tumblr community is vast and international, and I would appreciate it if you could reblog this so that I can reach as many London-living lol-lovers as possible.
If you are a London-living lol lover (or if you know someone who is!) and would be interested in free food, a chance to win an Amazon gift card, and a chance to discuss lolcats for one hour in the next few weeks, Please please email me at K.M.Miltner@lse.ac.uk.
Help my good friend Kate out if you’re a Lolcat loving Londoner!
Unhappy with the progress of bringing former senior officials to trial, protesters took to Tahrir Square, the center of the Egypt uprising. Protesters and police exchanged fire, using rocks and teargas.