Archive for the ‘knowledge’ category


January 29, 2007

Dan Russell, a full-time research scientist at Google, wrote a series of post on sensemaking at the Creating Passionate Users Blog. In the first post, Sensemaking 1, Dan starts with an interesting question: “How do you make sense of something that’s big and complicated?” Dan, then goes to give a brief overview of the responses people usually give him.

In the second post, Sensemaking 2: What I do to make sense, Dan explains his approach for sensemaking:

  • Figure out what it is that you’re trying to understand or get done
  • Collect a lot of information about the domain
  • Organize the information
  • Iterate
  • Do

Dan uses the third post, Sensemaking 3:The search for a representation, to show us how he used his approach to sensemaking to answer the question: How do people manage interruptions?

Finally, in the fourth post, Sensemaking 4: Summary of your comments, Dan comments on key issues that were brought up in the comments the readers left.

If you have to make sense of data, this group of posts is a must read!




State of the Computer Book Market at the O’Reilly Radar

January 17, 2007

Tim O’Reilly published an interesting post on the State of the Computer Book Market . One thing that caught my attention is the fact that Data Analysis related books are gaining some traction. Could that be related to the fact that businesses are realizing how important it is to do something useful with the data they are collecting? I guess that we will know in time…



Perspectives on Free and Open Source Software

November 22, 2006

I found this Open Access Book: Perspectives on Free and Open Source Software. I believe that if you are reading this blog, that book will interest you. By the way, kudos to The MIT Press for providing a free version of the book.



Is the number of irrelevant search results going to decrease some time soon?

November 15, 2006

I don’t think so.

A couple of days ago, I was reading a post titled Thoughts on the State of Search at the O’Reilly Radar. I completely agree with most of the points expressed in the article, in particular with the facts that:

  • The number of irrelevant search results will increase as the Web gets bigger

  • It is time for the search companies to start embracing, seriously, queries formulated in natural language

  • It is time that the search companies present the results grouped (clustered) in a meaningful way to facilitate the arduous labour we have of finding a needle in a haystack of irrelevant results

  • The search companies must update their databases more frequently

To read the post, you can click here.





It is important the creation of software, our software, free software…

November 12, 2006

With this words the Venezuelan President stressed the importance of the new National Centre for Research and Development on Free (as in Freedom) Technologies (CENDITEL). As the President puts it: “The centre will be key in achieving our scientific/technological independence”. Moreover, the centre is part of a National Initiative to create and guarantee access to knowledge because according to the Venezuelan President: “knowledge is universal. It is like the sunlight, nobody can say the sunlight is mine”. Knowledge does not belong to an individual (or group of individuals) it belongs to the entire human race.

The new Centre will focus, during the first year, on developing free and open source software for:

  • the public administration,
  • PDVSA, and
  • the groups for local development.

Starting on the second year of operations the Centre will expand his focus to include free and open hardware and bioinformatics.


Related links:

Luigino Bracci’s Blog

Videos in YouTube

Back from the IV World Forum on Free Knowledge

October 23, 2006

Yesterday, I got back from the IV World Forum on Free Knowledge. It was an amazing experience. I had a good time even though I was part of the organizing committee 😉


People were really interested in the democratization of knowledge. Besides my participation as an organizer, I gave a talk on Free Science: Utopia or Reality?, I gave a tutorial on Image Analysis and I chaired a Panel Discussion Session on Intelectual Property in the XXI Century. Some time in the next couple of weeks, I will comment on my experience in the Forum. For now, I just want to comment that Perl was well represented in the Forum with three out of the seven tutorials that were offered “free of charge” having something to do with Perl. The three tutorials were:

  • Introduction to Perl with Randal Schwartz
  • Image Analysis with Lino Ramirez, and
  • GUI Development with Perl with Alejandro Garrido



Call for Papers

July 13, 2006

Call For Papers
4th. World Forum on Free Knowledge
October 17th-21th, 2006, Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela

The IV World Forum on Free Knowledge offers an ideal environment for the exchange of ideas, information, experiences, and knowledge between the different communities interested in the promotion, diffusion and defence of Free Knowledge. The forum will count with Guest Speakers and with presentations selected based on their capacity to communicate, to a general audience, ideas related to practical and theoretical issues associated with the promotion, diffusion and defence of Free Knowledge. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

Free Software
Use, diffusion and development of Free Software, tools for collaborative work and platforms for information and communication.

Free Hardware
Opinions and experiences about the feasibility and necessity of transferring the basic concepts of Free Software to the creation of hardware.

Free Culture
Cultural manifestations in the context of a knowledge society.

Economic Aspects
Business models and exchange mechanisms for the free access to Knowledge.

Legal Aspects
Legal models according the new Knowledge Society

Free Art
Artistic manifestations in the context of Free Knowledge.

Migration to Free Software
Experiences and best practices in the process of migrating to Free Software.

Instructions for Authors
Communications will only be accepted in an open format, preferably in Writer or LaTeX formats. The proposals can be submitted in English or Spanish. An article should be written at double space and should not excede 15 pages, including title, author name(s), address, telephone and e-mail of corresponding author. The articles must be sent to before July 31st, 2006. Every paper should indicate a license that allows for its free distribution.

Important Dates
Submissions deadline: July 31st, 2006
Notifications will start on: August 31st, 2006