Entries Tagged as 'Data'

Awesome NYC Tornado Video From 20th Floor Apartment in Queens



Check out the below video shot from a 20th floor apartment in Queens, NY, by YouTube member DTRAVELZ

The video is a bit shaky in places (he was in a freakin’ tornado!), but the camera clearly captures the sight of this storm approaching and absolutely engulfing the entire area. This thing passes directly over his building! Check out the intense power of the wind and the incredible amount of rain falling. The clacking sounds are likely hailstones bouncing off the glass window. Great work DTRAVELZ!

This guy is really lucky that his windows stayed intact — apparently some of the glass panes of the balcony below his were blown off.

Put this on full screen, and turn up the speakers!

YouTube – TORNADO in Queens, Highrise view

Better than Owning. Better than Free.


No, this is not about the beloved NYC rock-opera musical. It’s about the differences (and benefits) of access vs. ownership; and a look at just what will have value when so much is available for free.

Kevin Kelly over at KK.ORG has just posted a very interesting essay on this topic, called Better Than Owning: Access is better than ownership. Take a few minutes and read it. Here’s an excerpt:

Very likely, in the near future, I won’t “own” any music, or books, or movies. Instead I will have immediate access to all music, all books, all movies using an always-on service, via a subscription fee or tax. I won’t buy – as in make a decision to own — any individual music or books because I can simply request to see or hear them on demand from the stream of ALL. I may pay for them in bulk but I won’t own them. The request to enjoy a work is thus separated from the more complicated choice of whether I want to “own” it. I can consume a movie, music or book without having to decide or follow up on ownership.

For many people this type of instant universal access is better than owning. No responsibility of care, backing up, sorting, cataloging, cleaning, or storage. As they gain in public accessibility, books, music and movies are headed to become social goods even though they might not be paid by taxes. It’s not hard to imagine most other intangible goods becoming social goods as well. Games, education, and health info are also headed in that direction.

In fact, take a few more minutes and read this piece posted by Kevin Kelly in January, 2008: Better Than Free. Here’s an excerpt:

The internet is a copy machine. At its most foundational level, it copies every action, every character, every thought we make while we ride upon it…

…Every bit of data ever produced on any computer is copied somewhere. The digital economy is thus run on a river of copies. Unlike the mass-produced reproductions of the machine age, these copies are not just cheap, they are free.

When copies are super abundant, they become worthless.
When copies are super abundant, stuff which can’t be copied becomes scarce and valuable.

When copies are free, you need to sell things which can not be copied.

Well, what can’t be copied?

And finally, if you’ve got 43 minutes to invest in getting a glimpse of the future of the Internet, watch this Kevin Kelly presentation at Web and Where 2.0+ in February 2008.
(The presentation is about ~23 min. and the Q&A, the other 20 min.)

Kevin Kelly’s “Web 3.0”


I Bought Gas for $1.89/Gallon Today

Gas Prices

GAs 2

Can you believe this? I couldn’t! So I took a few pictures.

I actually bought gas for $1.89/gallon tonight in Fort Lee, NJ, on my way home from a client’s house. I’ve just become numb to the price of gasoline lately, and hadn’t really noticed the prices falling. I cannot remember the last time I saw gas for under two dollars per gallon.

I did a quick Internet search, and found that the highest price in my area of New York City was $4.41/gallon on 7/16/2008; that was only 4 months ago. (The highest price in the Fort Lee, NJ area was $4.01/gallon on 7/6/2008.)

Today I got 12.217 gallons for only $23.20, that would have cost about $50 four months ago.

The Fuel Gauge Report website has more information about gas prices, including this chart of the:

12 Month Average For Regular Unleaded

12 month

Google Flu Trends

Flu Trends

Has every state now gone blue?

No, there are still a few red states left. But what the above map does show, is the levels of flu activity in each state (as of today, November 11, 2008); lighter blue for minimal flu activity, and darker blue for raised levels of flu activity.

Google (that’s right, the search engine) has just launched a new service called Google Flu Trends. Google has observed that certain search terms are good indicators of flu activity. Google Flu Trends uses Google search data to estimate flu activity up to two weeks faster than traditional flu surveillance systems managed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Of course, not every person who searches for “flu” or “flu symptoms” is actually sick. But trends do develop amongst the millions of searches done each day. It makes sense when you think about it; people might do a search themselves before they actually end up at their doctor’s office where their case of the Flu gets reported.

By making flu estimates available each day, Google Flu Trends may provide an early-warning system for outbreaks of influenza, and may enable public health officials to better respond to seasonal epidemics and pandemics.

Learn more about Google Flu Trends here.

Google Maps Plugin for WordPress

My Neighborhood!

I happen to love maps. So of course, I love my new Google Maps Plugin for WordPress.

You like maps too?

Awesome US, World & State Wall Maps:
Raven Maps & Images

And you like on-line weather maps too?

Giant National Radar Composite (it’s huge!):
National Mosaic Enhanced Radar Image

Do you know of any other great map resources? Do tell; leave a comment!