Doteveryone reading lists 15.11.16

Interesting news, articles and opinions that Doteveryone staff have discovered this week. Reading for everyone.

  1. How Vector Space Mathematics Reveals the Hidden Sexism in Language
    Back in 2013, a handful of researchers at Google set loose a neural network on a corpus of three million words taken from Google News texts. The neural net’s goal was to look for patterns in the way words appear next to each other.
  2. BBC boss James Harding calls for a ‘Slow News’ day
    The year of Brexit, Donald Trump and terror attacks has been one long “breaking news” banner. But now the BBC is promising viewers a pause for reflection by introducing “Slow News” into bulletins.
  3. Virgin Media probes net neutrality limits in UK with zero-rated Facebook apps
    The company’s newly launched 4G mobile services let users access both WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger without using up their data allowance. Like all zero-rating schemes, this seems initially beneficial for consumers, but could also stifle competition.
  4. Designing for someone who’s never been online
    Think back to the first time you went online. How did you know to scroll down a page, to click a link or that certain objects could be typed into? Those of us who grew up with computers have a sophisticated mental catalogue of design patterns that we’ve built up over years.
  5. A Bad Carver: Technological change and de-condensation
    Why is technology so often at odds with the sacred? In other words, why does everyone get so mad about technological change? We humans are irrational and fearful creatures, but I don’t think it’s just that.
  6. Is the Gig Economy Cannibalizing or Creating Jobs? Here’s Some Early Evidence.
    Does the so-called gig economy of app-based freelancing for platforms like Uber or TaskRabbit complement or “cannibalise” more conventional payroll work? Given the sketchiness of the data available, it’s been hard to tell.
  7. How strong are the institutions of liberal societies?
    How serious is the situation? Are the institutions of democracy truly at risk? To answer that question, we need to be clear what we mean by institutions and what role we think they play in our societies.
  8. Roads and Bridges: The Unseen Labour Behind Our Digital Infrastructure
    Our modern society runs on software. But the tools we use to build software are buckling under increased demand. Nearly all software today relies on free, public code, written and maintained by communities of developers and other talent.