Five short links

Photo by Dave M Barb

quantiFind – A commercial company with a similar philosophy to the DSTK. Take in unstructured data, and use statistical approaches to extract something structured.

WorryDream – I love the infographics approach of this site, especially the ‘latitudes I have lived at’.

Goliath – Intriguing lightweight event-based web server, written in Ruby. Sinatra has been a pleasure to use, but despite its maturity, requiring a layer like Passenger to serve parallel web requests still doesn’t sit right with me. I don’t have a well-reasoned argument behind this, so please go easy, but it has felt like too many moving parts.

Graphite – Log arbitrary events to a central server, get instant graphs of them over time. It’s a simple concept, but one I could see being very powerful. One of my favorite profiling tools when I was a game programmer was altering the screen border color as each code module executed. For 90’s era single-threaded games synced to the refresh rate, you’d end up with a stacked colored column along the side, showing the proportion of the frame devoted to AI, rendering, etc. The simpler the profiling interface, the more likely people are to actually use it and learn the real characteristics of their systems.

Diffbot – A different take on the unstructured-to-structured approach to data. One API lets you watch a web page and get a stream of changes over time, either as a simple RSS feed or a more detailed XML format. Another does a boilerpipe-like extraction of an article’s text or a home page’s link structure.

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