I can't tell but to be honest, I'd rather the concept didn't come off. While I'm on Facebook just like everyone else, I rarely go there these days. When I log in, I see very little that feels important or even noteworthy. The only thing I feel like doing is deleting my account.
What's more, I don't think I'm alone in feeling like that. When was the last time you heard anyone ask "hey, did you read about that scientific/technological breakthrough on Facebook?" Or a great piece of news, journalism, anything?
No… because that's not what Facebook is for. The social media network is there to serve up pap, stupid games, occasionally witty comments, malware and privacy breaches it seems. In doing so, it earns bucket loads of money from advertisers who get finely-grained metrics on their audiences thanks to the volunteered details.
I hate the fact that Facebook and others starve useful media of audiences, and therefore the ad money they need to survive. Taken to its logical conclusion, Facebook and other social media represent a huge threat to democracy, as they're essentially killing off the free media that's supposed to hold the mighty accountable.
Now, it seems Zuckerberg wants to make Facebook into something resembling useful media. Instead of "I'm watching TV" we'll now watch Facebook instead. We'll get our music on Facebook, and maybe the news too.
With some 800 million active users in many different countries, how could it go wrong? Perhaps because the attraction of Facebook is that it's not useful media and that what people want from it is a stream of pap, games and malware. Most useful media sites don't serve that, and they're not anywhere near as popular as Facebook as a consequence.
If it does work, and Facebook becomes a media giant with perhaps a billion users… I don't want to finish that thought. Fingers crossed it won't happen.
Several organisations worked together to for instance provide imagery of the damage in Christchurch - and as we all know, high-resolution digital pictures and video make for big files.
Even so, I'm surprised to read "downloading over 50GB of files through a standard Internet connection was simply going to take too long." This is 2011, and 50GB isn't actually that much anymore. Put into perspective, for just over a hundy, you get a fast 2TB drive. Would it have been faster to fill up some cheap hard drives with data and courier them around?
Overall, the amount of data on the BeSTGRID DataFabric wasn't that huge - 660GB in total - and it shouldn't have been an issue to share it.
What the report appears to say is that there's a great need to capture large amounts of data when catastrophes like earthquakes strike. However, since we haven't invested enough in our Internet infrastructure, this task and sharing the data, becomes problematic. Note that access to the data has to be timely too to be effective, and not days after it was captured.
If that's the case, should we not hurry up and invest more to eliminate the infrastructure bottlenecks, so that we can make better use of the captured data? That is, let's start worrying about performance problems around shifting 660TB instead of 660GB.
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