Thursday Threads: Print-on-Demand, Video Changing the World, Puzzling Out Public Domain, and more

I’m starting something new on DLTJ: Thursday Threads — summaries and pointers of stories, services, and other stuff that I found interesting in the previous seven days. This is culled from entries that I post to my FriendFeed lifestream through various channels (Google Reader shared items, citations shared in Zotero, Twitter posts, etc.), but since I know not everyone is using those services, it might be useful to post the best-of-the-selected here once a week. Why Thursday? Somewhere long ago I read that Thursday at 11am is the best time to put a post on a blog because Thursday lunch through Friday are the most active time for readers. I have no idea whether that is true or not, but lacking any evidence to the contrary, Thursday morning will do fine. (Obviously I’m a little late on this first one, but I’ll try to do better next time. Or not — maybe this will be a one-off weekly thing.)

MagCloud — On-demand printing of magazines

MagCloud, the revolutionary new self-publishing web service from HP, is changing the way ideas, stories, and images find their way into peoples’ hands in a printed magazine format. Whether you are a novice or experienced publisher, MagCloud offers you a way to create commercial quality magazines, printed on demand with no upfront costs or minimum print runs. MagCloud is creating new ways to bring consumers and publishers together in a web-based marketplace where choice, flexibility and print on demand are the cornerstones of the community.

Could be useful for short-run, professional printing. I learned about this via a conference call with the editorial board of the NISO International Standards Quarterly.

Chris Anderson: How web video powers global innovation (TED Talk)

TED’s Chris Anderson says the rise of web video is driving a worldwide phenomenon he calls Crowd Accelerated Innovation — a self-fueling cycle of learning that could be as significant as the invention of print. But to tap into its power, organizations will need to embrace radical openness. And for TED, it means the dawn of a whole new chapter …

TED curator Chris Anderson takes the stage to talk about what he has seen as the impact of putting TED talks on the net specifically as well as the general case for the impact of services like YouTube on worldwide culture. This is definitely gets one thinking about the power of the visual medium. Closer to home, it also should get one thinking about assisting library patrons in creating and curating this content, no?

Plain English

Every field has its own jargon that’s meaningless to everyone else. Sometimes you want to translate a given -ese into lay terms while preserving the original text. Plain English is designed to facilitate this. The premise is straightforward: The original text is highlighted in yellow. When you click on a phrase, it toggles to the re-written simpler version, in gray. Buttons at the top allow you to toggle the whole thing at once. The words are stored in a simple JSON file.

From the laboratory of Slate Magazine comes this technique for toggling between one set of words and its translated form. I first found this on the NPR Planet Money blog in a post titled The Fed, Translated Into English. They used it to “translate” Fed-speak (e.g. the very dense statements released by the U.S. Federal Reserve) into more common language.

Google New

The one place to find everything new from Google.

Found via Jason Griffey’s post on his American Libraries Perpetual Beta blog. I noted there my frustration that Google New didn’t have an RSS feed to make this list of new things more machine-actionable. I still think that this missing feed functionality is strange, and if I get a chance at some point I’ll try to feed the page through Yahoo! Pipes to make one.

Rising Into the Public Domain: The Copyright Review Management System (CRMS) at the University of Michigan

Interview with John Wilkin, Associate University Librarian for Library Information Technology and Executive Director, HathiTrust and Principal Investigator for CRMS

Interesting insight into how the University of Michigan is tackling the 1923-1963 orphan works problem. (Found via James Grimmelmann)

$1000 bounty offered for JPEG2000 support in Firefox

We’ve waited long enough. Apparently Firefox needs to be dragged kicking and screaming into the early 2000′s. I have a financial interest in seeing this implemented, so I’m going to step up.

I’m going to offer a $1000 bounty for native JPEG2000 support in Firefox, on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Comment #155 on this feature request has someone putting up real money to have a developer integrate JPEG2000 into the Firefox browser. The ensuing discussion gives a glimpse into how hard and how easy it could be.

White House Issues IPv6 Directive

Network World reports: Federal CIO Vivek Kundra has issued a directive requiring all U.S. government agencies to upgrade their public-facing Web sites and services by Sept. 30, 2012 to support IPv6, the long-anticipated upgrade to the Internet’s main communications protocol. Kundra’s memo mandates that agencies use native IPv6 instead of transition mechanisms that translate between IPv6 and the current standard, which is known as IPv4.

You may not have heard this, but we’re running out of IP addresses. An IP address is the thing computers use to find each other on the net (and not to be confused with domain name system (DNS) addresses — the human friendly things that we put on our business cards and advertisements). In the current version of the Internet Protocol (IPv4), we only have about 4 billion addresses and we’ve used up 95% of them. There has been a big press this year to move to the next generation Internet Protocol (IPv6) that will give us 340 billion billion billion billion addresses (or roughly 50 billion billion billion addresses for each person alive in 2012 when the 4 billion addresses of the existing Internet Protocol run out). The entry of the federal government into the push for IPv6 is expected to accelerate adoption of the new standard.

(This post was updated on 06-Jun-2014.)