Weeknote 1, 2023

§1: Happy Public Domain Day to Everyone Except Canadians

January 1st is the unofficial holiday of Public Domain Day, in which cultural works leave copyright and enter the public domain. In the US, works from 1927 are open to all.

Canada will not be celebrating Public Domain Day for another twenty years, thanks to an amendment to The Copyright Act that were included in Bill C-19, the Budget Implementation Act, 2022, No. 1.

§2: Google Docs now offers Smart chips

Screen shot of a Google Doc with the Insert drop-down open, the option for Smart chips selected and the mouse hovering over the option for Place.

I’m not sure how new this is, but it is new to me. Google Docs allows what they call Smart chips to be inserted into a document. While I hate the name, I was won over by the ability to add locations that generate little pop-ups into the page:

The heading is Pizza and underneath is a list of names of pizza places, but preceded with a map icon and greyed like a button. There is a small map pop out for Scarr's Pizza in New York

§3: I wrote a blog post yesterday. I miss the dopamine that it used to bring.

Yesterday I wrote a short blog post called, What does the D&D5e Open Gaming License suggest for the future of Open Access? It was shared a couple of times on Mastodon but I would not know that from just looking at my WordPress stats page as all links in the Mastodon webUI are marked as noreferrer.

I understand that they made this design choice to better protect those who share information with others online. It’s just something I have to get used to.

§4: When your conceptual framework has been co-opted by the alt-right

For those of you interested in keeping up with the latest developments in disinformation, I would recommend listening to this episode, Brief: Libs Of TikTok Cries Cult from the Conspirituality podcast.

§5: Marcia Bates on Search Systems

Marcia Bates, Professor Emerita from the Department of Information Studies, UCLA, is interviewed on the most recent episode of The Informed Life. She discusses search systems with the host and in the conversation, she laments the lack of development and use of “user centered vocabulary” (as opposed to “indexing vocabulary”).

I like the pull-quote for the episode, which is, Most of the time, people, when they’re searching for information, are actually solving a problem in life.