Google News Source Diversity

Google News is a fascinating tool. After hearing on a BBC Podcast about the FBI arresting seven people for an alleged terrorist plot against the Sears Tower, I was curious (I visited it with Lizzie only a year back). Google News makes it easy to track down different versions of the same story. It’s striking the tone adopted by different news sources:

I read a lot of my news through Google’s portal these days, precisely in an attempt to get some balance (and even then I don’t know how well I actually do).

Incidentally, although this might seem like a contradiction from my previous statement, it’s also striking how samey the news is from sources with similar biases and backgrounds - I have begun to understand just how much inter-source plaigarism goes on, and how many sources rely on news wires.

As with many other things, it appears that when it comes to news, caveat emptor.

'Chunky Egg Mayonnaise'

Is is just me, or is this the most revolting sandwich title ever? Compass should be ashamed of themselves.

Confidentiality and Organization Size

Presumably it must be logical that the more people know a secret, the less likely it will stay a secret (in the general case). Some organizations have only one level of secrecy (i.e. confidential). This is used for everything from secrets that 3 people should know, to secrets that 30,000 people should know. In the latter case, the secret is highly likely to stray outside the group.

Wouldn’t it make sense to indicate these differently? Increasingly the bureaucracy attached to such things isn’t a good thing to be doing, but surely we should also admit to ourselves that there is a practical difference between the two - perhaps to the extent of keeping fewer things secret?

Google didn’t turn up any obvious research in this area, but I’m sure there must be some.

'New' Best Practice for SOA/ESB?

Simply stated:

Process Server provides a layer to implement a business process - this is (or should be, or could be) ‘interesting’ to a business. ESB simply provides the glue to tie things together - auditing, converting one interface to another, etc. So don’t fall into the trap of faking Process Server functionality in ESB, when Process Server provides it all already.

Traffic Bunching

Whilst trying to cross the road in Hursley this morning, I was struck by how the cars arrived in a long bunch that prevented me from crossing. Someone pointed out that in this case it was probably caused by the traffic light at the end of the village. This got me to thinking: is it important to have cars bunched? If they had been evenly distributed along the road, is it possible that they would be just close enough never to give me a gap large enough to cross? However, it also seems obvious that too much bunching would cause further jams at intersections where bunches came together. Is there an optimum bunching level for any given section of road, and if you plotted it against the width/intended capacity of the road, is there a correlation?

Has anyone done research on this? I guess it might come under the larger umbrella of queueing theory.

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