Tag: winterschool

The Social Life of a t.co URL visualized

On the 25th of January I presented a first version of a paper on short URLs during our Digital Methods Winterschool 2012. It contains a case study that aims to map and analyze how devices treat a hyperlink by looking into what happens when a link is shared on a platform and therewith adopted by the platform. The purpose is to illustrate the social life of a link shared on Twitter by investigating the actors that are involved in the sharing and proliferation of links. Methodology Starting point is one URL, a Huffington Post article on the Costa Concordia Disaster: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/14/costa-concordia-disaster-_n_1206167.html Check resonance of the link on Twitter using Topsy. All links are t.co links because Twitter wraps all links using its t.co Link Wrapper. Follow all these t.co links to see where they resolve to. My colleague Bernhard Rieder kindly wrote a cURL script that resolves short URLs. The server’s HTTP header was requested and outputted with cURL. The output of the header shows the path of redirection until the final destination, the Huffington Post URL, is reached. Put all redirections in a spreadsheet. Export spreadsheet as a .csv file and then transformed into a Gephi file using the a custom DMI CSV to […]

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Digital Methods Winterschool 2012: APIs – Variations and Change

After the introduction to APIs and API critiques Bernard Rieder talked about APIs from the perspective of  “Variation and Change.” This transcript is compiled from collaborative notes by the Digital Methods Initiative. API: a means and protocol for two systems to exchange data and functionality. APIs can be seen as data sources and as objects of study that can be historicized, analyzed, critiqued, etc. Before taking the API as a research object we also need to get a better understanding of “what we can get” out of APIs and asses our level of confidence when researching. The API can be used as a means to study a service and possibly the evolution of the Web? The ‘past’ Andrew D. Birrel and Bruce Jay Nelson, Implementing Remote Procedure Calls, ACM Transactions on Computer Systems 2(1):39-59, February 1984. Webservices, SOA –   XML-RPC, SOAP, WSDL – B2B, e-commerce Google SOAP Web API: 2002 (Java, .NET), Amazon Web Services: 2002 The history of APIs; they came out of business context, B2B, e-commerce transactions, to ensure transactional integrity. They were heavy protocols first written in ‘hard-core’ programming languages such as Java and not PEARL, PHP and JavaScript. The ‘turn’ Flickr (feb 2004), API (aug 2004): Easy to use API. Less about transactional integrity. […]

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Digital Methods Winterschool 2012: APIs as Interfaces to the Cloud

From 25-27 January 2012 we held our fourth annual Winter School with the theme “Interfaces for the Cloud: Curating the Data.” The first day consisted of paper presentations and responses/feedback. The second day we collaboratively kicked off a workshop on API critique where I started with an introduction to APIs and API critiques, followed by Bernhard Rieder on API variations and change, followed by Richard Rogers introducing project ideas for the next day and a half. This blogpost contains the slides and a pointy transcript of the morning session. Anne Helmond – Introduction to API critique What is an API? An application programming interface (API) is a source code based specification intended to be used as an interface by software components to communicate with each other. An API may include specifications for routines, data structures, object classes, and variables. (Wikipedia) “set of tools that developers can use to access structured data” (boyd and Crawford 2011) “Machine-interfaces for your application” (Bell p. 331) “software interface to your website” (Bell p. 332) “weaving the Guardian into the fabric of the web “(Bell p. 331) In Building Social Web Applications Graham Bell describes how being on the web was the cry of the 90s […]

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