creative

From the web developer's toolkit: building an open source image placeholder

open source image placeholder

Image placeholder services are useful tools for web app developers. They serve the singular purpose of marking the location of a future image within a design or layout. Spaces that will eventually be filled with production images can be worked around while the artists or photographers prepare the images behind the scenes. From the perspective of rapid application development, an image placeholder service is a standard part of the developer’s toolkit.

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Teach kids about copyright: a list of resources from Creative Commons

Lessons in copyright

Open curriculum alternatives to MPAA’s new anti-piracy campaign for kids.

It has come to our attention that the Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording Industry Association of America, and top internet service providers are drafting curriculum to teach kids in California elementary schools that copying is wrong, or as the headline on Wired.com reads: "Downloading is Mean!" » Read more

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What artists want in software: An ode to Dream Studio

open source why

I am an artist and the sole maintainer of Dream Studio, a free and open source creative system (on SourceForge). Though most of the software is maintained by others who maintain their own Ubuntu PPAs, which are included with Dream Studio by default (which is, itself, based on standard desktop Ubuntu), I create the default themes and overall look of Dream Studio, package the various multimedia categories, create the installer disc (and Dream Studio for Ubuntu), and write a couple of the programs and scripts included with the distribution.

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Open source software helps artists create music

music infinity

TruthLogik, a New York based hip hop artist, says that in a million years he could not have imagined he would be recording an album using entirely free software. When he first stumbled on open source music-making tools, he thought about the computer classes he took in school. He had never been exposed to the idea that free software could be so well-made and uniquely useful.

Making music using open source tools and software has been gaining some traction, so we sat down with TruthLogik and asked how he created a hip hop album solely using open source software. » Read more

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Cultivating the “supply side” of the creative economy

Redwood sprout

This summer, it’s Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs’ singular genius that seems to be propped open on beach towels, in hammocks and at every third airplane seat. As fascinating as Jobs’ person, career, and legacy are, the intense interest in his insane greatness raises a question. What if we directed that level of intensity and interest at awakening the genius (if slightly less great and hopefully less insane) inside of each and every one of us—each child, each student, each parent, each working person? » Read more

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Does your city need a better brand?

Open brand

Do governments care about branding? You bet they do. With today's economic climate, governments are looking for ways to get an economic edge and create jobs. One of the ways to get ahead today is to create a perception or a promise that the locale is business-friendly, innovative, creative, and high-tech. » Read more

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The day TuxPaint became contagious

edu scratch

I work at a public library with 28 Linux stations made publicly available in four separate rooms. The room in which I spend most of my time has 10 computers, and elementary and middle school students stop by daily after school to use them. About 90 percent of the children use the computers for games, and about 10 percent use them for doing homework. Very few use the computer for creative graphics applications. I'm bent on changing that. » Read more

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Creating a context for creativity

My experience as a manager – and in particular, as the leader of a company – has been shaped by two quotes that have helped frame my thinking about that role. One is from Harold Geneen, who oversaw the growth of ITT into the first modern conglomerate:

"The skill of management is achieving your objectives through the efforts of others."

This view of management suggests the classic manager, somebody who figures out » Read more

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