Tag: library

Facebook updates: nothing to fuss about

So Facebook, the current paramount social website, updated its website with the possibility to download all your data (among other updates). I don’t see why people need to fuss about this.

Although maybe useful, the important is not to be able to retrieve your data. After all, if your pictures are on Facebook, they were previously on your computer / camera / whatever. So you should already have them (and Facebook sends them to you in a zip file? what a feature!). Unless Facebook allows you to also download data about you but uploaded by others; this is a bit more interesting from a sociological / academic point of view (what has been posted about you). And then? A “big” step towards interoperability between social websites? Are you joking? For interoperability, you need 2 partners and, to my knowledge, no other websites (social or not) are currently offering the possibility to upload data from Facebook. Will it arrive? I’m sure of it. Is it secure? I doubt it: nothing is 100% secure in IT, Facebook is no exception. But this is still not important!

The important thing would have been to have total control on your data. The ability to post data. The ability to effectively remove data (Facebook policy explicitely states nothing is necessarily physically erased, not even your account if you decide to close it!). The ability to remove data about you posted by others. The ability to control data posted about your children. The ability to have real privacy.

So, why do I blog this? I don’t really get why people are so excited about this feature. Oxford building a new library [1, 2], why and how, this has nothing to do with the topic of this post but this is news!

Bodleian Library: Divinity School
Photo credit: Bodleian Library: Divinity School by Beth Hoffmann on Flickr (CC-by-nc-sa)

A new website for Open Clip Art Library

Open Clip Art Library logo A small post to welcome the new website for the Open Clip Art Library (OCAL). The OCAL was created more than 6 years ago and now has more than 24.000 vector illustrations in the Public Domain (in the SVG format that can be read by most graphic software). For me, a major improvement is the direct visualisation of thumbnails. In the previous version of the website, it was indeed painfull to open each result of a search in order to see if the illustration was what one was looking for. I’m using the Library since a few years and I am always amazed at the quality of most illustrations in the science and biology sections (the two sections I use the most).

So, if you didn’t know OCAL or didn’t have a look at it since a long time, it’s worth visiting their new website now!