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Tom Morris
Attended Cornell
Lived in Wellesley, MA, USA
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Tom Morris

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Interesting map of geographic density of Freebase topics
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Strange. They did a pretty rudimentary graphing of geolocations so they had a pretty picture to complement a silly complaint.

A lot of the geodata is US because the US government gives such data away in stark contrast to many other countries in the world including, I believe, China.

This distribution reflects government policy more than anything else. 
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As a former GSoC mentor, I highly recommend this program.  If you know any university students interested in software engineering and/or open source, please encourage them to apply.  Deadline is March 21, but don't wait!
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Interesting that mutation towards lower lethality means more numerous carriers to spread the disease.
 
Using bits of human intestine stored in a Philadelphia medical museum in 1849, scientists have decoded the genes of an early form of cholera, the deadly diarrheal disease that first swept the globe just a few decades earlier.

The disease is still a lethal menace, as was shown in Haiti four years ago, when an unexpected outbreak after an earthquake killed more than 8,000 and hospitalized hundreds of thousands more. But it has evolved since the 19th-century pandemics, which killed millions; the new work, by scientists at McMaster University in Ontario, creates the first chance to study the genome of the pandemic “classical” strain and understand its roots.
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Interesting paper on signals which could be used to determine contribution quality in Freebase.

Of course, direct, unpaid volunteer contributions are only a tiny fraction of the overall total, lagging far behind the machine ingestion from Wikipedia, MusicBrainz, etc and the Google-paid contractors.
 
If you've ever wondered how Google determines which data to trust in Freebase, this research paper gives a rare glimpse into one of the algorithms used to estimate the quality of individual contributions.

Paper: http://www.ipeirotis.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/wsdm2014-cqual.pdf
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An unnoticed but awesome release at #GoogleIO today, used by the Maps team to eliminate UI jank: http://google.github.io/tracing-framework/ 
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Ray Kurzweil starts as a full--time Google employee in Mountain View on Monday.  Didn't see that coming...
 
Ray Kurzweil Joins Google...

Very cool! Throw another creative genius on the very large pile of talent already at Google...  In fact, got to have lunch today with +Stuart Feldman, famous for making "make" among other things.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuart_Feldman)  It's very humbling and inspiring to work alongside luminaries like this...
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Tom Morris

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New overview paper about Wikidata to appear in CACM
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An ontology automatically extracted from web queries & web text. Bootstrapped with Freebase, but much bigger than Freebase or DBpedia
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Dan Primack on why Boston needs more tech media coverage
 
well said Dan
http://goo.gl/m8F2nK
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Happy Wikipedia Day!  Such a precocious teenager at just 13 years old...
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Yesterday Peter Suber published a list of five open letters to Congress supporting Open Access signed by Nobel Laureates. I've merged the lists and de-duped them using OpenRefine to get a list of 88 laureates supporting open access.  I also reconciled them against Freebase to get links to their Wikipedia pages.  (It took some searching to find Riccardo Giacconi since his name was so badly mangled.) 

The resulting spreadsheet is at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Ak8syCNT8x2DdGZBd3JYeVppWldybFNkOVFrWHZwbkE&usp=sharing
 
Open letters from Nobel laureates supporting open access

For a listserv post, I just pulled together the five open letters to Congress from Nobel laureates in support of US policies requiring open access to publicly-funded research. Now that I've pulled them together, I thought I'd share the list here as well.

* first letter, August 26, 2004; 25 signatures
http://www.taxpayeraccess.org/nobelists2004.html

* second letter, July 8, 2007; 26 signatures
http://www.taxpayeraccess.org/bof.html

* third letter, September 9, 2008; 33 signatures
http://www.arl.org/sparc/bm~doc/nobelistssupportpa-08sept.pdf

* fourth letter, November 10, 2009; 41 signatures
http://www.taxpayeraccess.org/supporters/scientists/nobelists_2009.shtml

* fifth letter, March 28, 2012; 52 signatures
http://www.arl.org/sparc/bm~doc/2012-nobelists-lofgren.pdf

#oa #openaccess #nobel  
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Well, to be fair, some like Arthur Kornberg and Marshall Nirenberg, signed all the letters written while they were alive, even though it wasn't the full five, and others such as Jack Szostak and Martin Chalfie have signed every letter since they became Laureates.

Still the six who signed all five letters deserve special commendation: James Watson, Paul Berg, Johann Deisenhofer, Edmond Fisher, Kary Mullis, and Leland Hartwell -- evenly split between Chemistry & Medicine.
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Have him in circles
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Product Management & Software Engineering
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