Daily Archives: January 17, 2013

It’s not what you get out of it that matters, it’s what you put in.

That is the real significance of Facebook’s inelegantly named Graph Search, the new “social” search engine it unveiled this week. The company that probably already knows more about you than any other single business would now like you to divulge one other, extremely valuable thing: what you want.

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Ingram Pinn illustration

The death of the internet activist Aaron Swartz at the age of 26 has rightly evoked tributes to his creativity and selflessness. Swartz, who faced jail for illegally downloading millions of academic papers from an electronic library, committed suicide last week.

Five years ago, Swartz signed a “guerrilla open access manifesto” in which he complained of “the world’s entire scientific and cultural heritage” being “digitised and locked up by a handful of private corporations” such as Reed Elsevier. He advised computer hackers to “take information, wherever it is stored, make our copies and share them with the world”.

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