A major breakthrough in visual memory research

McGill University in Montreal announced this week that three researchers at the school have made a breakthrough in the study of the origins of visual memory. The research answers the question “of how and where exactly in the brain the visual information coming from our eyes is first transformed into short-term memories,” the school said …


Secure ecommerce turns 20 (Plus: 95% of Brits now shop online)

Monday marked two decades since Philadelphian Phil Brandenburger made what is generally considered to be the first secure purchase on the Internet, when he snatched up the Sting CD “Ten Summoner’s Tales” through the now-obscure online retailer Net Market. Commercial transactions had been conducted online before this, but according to an article in the New …


Selfies and the spectrum of human expression

“Human motivations change little, but opportunity can change a lot.” -Clay Shirky, Cognitive Surplus After I read Cognitive Surplus, I kept returning to this quote again and again. While writing my book, a friend of mine introduced me to Clay Shirky. He and I talked about how that quote applies to the selfie phenomenon. Here’s …


5 intriguing facts about Instagram’s Bolt launch

Rumors began circulating late last week that Instagram was readying the release of its Snapchat-competitor Bolt, but not until Tuesday did reps for the photo-sharing platform confirm that it had taken the app live in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa. The ephemeral messaging service lets you send a photo or video to a single …


No, Mark Zuckerberg didn’t dis photo sharing (quite the opposite, actually)

Squeezed in between the loud headlines announcing Facebook’s impressive quarterly earnings, I noticed one from Business Insider that zeroed in on a comment Zuckerberg made during Wednesday’s earnings call: “Zuckerberg Says Photos Are Out, Messaging is In.” This struck me as odd, especially since much of Facebook’s current success has been generated by the social media …


Positive politician pics foreshadow favorable polls

Positive photos of politicians published in two major American newspapers foreshadow favorable polling results, four researchers from the University of California at Los Angeles have concluded. The two newspapers in question are the New York Times and the Washington Post. The researchers also found that international outlets Reuters and The Guardian tend to publish photos …