new language annotation software

regarding a new release of ELAN, language annotation software from The Language Archive (TLA) sponsored by the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics (to which i have absolutely NO affliliation):


by Han Sloetjes

Recently, we have released ELAN 4.7.1. It introduces some important changes to the EAF format (now version 2.8). The XML structure of controlled vocabularies is changed such that it breaks backward compatibility! Connected to these changes are new features such as multilingual controlled vocabularies and the fact that annotations now store a reference to the CV entry they are based on. Language assignment is now possible for controlled vocabularies but will be extended to the display of Metadata, Data Categories and tiers in future releases.

There is an option in the Preferences to always store in the previous version of EAF, version 2.7, for backward compatibility with previous ELAN releases. But using both ELAN 4.7.x and 4.6.2 or lower on the same files should be done with care.

Other new features are a media player based on VLC for Linux, an option for adding dependent tiers in multiple files, n-gram analysis for corpora and volume sliders for all linked audio tracks for convenient switching between the audio sources.

and a link to the download site here


Software, Culture, and Political Economy in New Media Capitalism

Here’s a link to the book of the title of this post – a book about social media, the software that it uses, and the uses of that software.

there’s a free chapter to download at the site, so perhaps worth taking a look.

for purposes of future comprehension re the provision of this link, here is an excerpt from the blurb page:


Gehl adeptly uses a mix of software studies, science and technology studies, and political economy to reveal the histories and contexts of these social media sites. Looking backward at divisions of labor and the process of user labor, he provides case studies that illustrate how binary “Like” consumer choices hide surveillance systems that rely on users to build content for site owners who make money selling user data, and that promote a culture of anxiety and immediacy over depth.

Reverse Engineering Social Media also presents ways out of this paradox, illustrating how activists, academics, and users change social media for the better by building alternatives to the dominant social media sites.



link to CSIRO’s computational informatics page

well worth a visit and a browse.

several projects using data-mining to gather intel on a range of natural and man-made phenomena:

lead there by an article on one of their latest projects using emotion semantic categories (very rough to a linguist) to map reactions on twitter from tweets around the world. (see

smart meters and the new panopticon

i knew when i first read about ‘smart meters’ that i did not like the idea.


here’s someone else who explains why…



starting “new thread”: lulz

OK, two things:

i’ve decided to start thread, by using the medium of blog in a somewhat analogous way to email list posting – we’ve discussed the differences, now i’m somewhat ignoring them.

2nd, one hears of “lulzsec” in passing, but only via twitter mentions do i manage to learn anything about it, and then only when a story gets written. usually in the guardian.

anyone know any more?
i will need to investigate in my spare time (of which i have some, but should be using for touring or reading or preparing – hell researching the various eddies of the internet seems appropriate use of time to me, and after all, if it’s a tale of RL hacking, i am always interested)

here’s a link to the latest article via one of the comments i particularly ‘resonated’ with

more later – this train is moving and shaking…

one thing i learned today via twitter..

…is about a book online, aka an “open book” called 20 things i learned about browsers and the web”.
the review says that it has something for everyone in it, e.g. newbies and CMC luddites as well as old hands alike… and i am just starting to enjoy it myself. so, at this point, i cannot actually recommend it as such, but i can merely point to it as an example of something interesting that i found today…

[rather than disperse myself too fully about the place – like putting it on digg for example (is that still going?), or stumble upon (i did not ‘stumble upon’ this after all, it came via one of my twitter followings) or facebook which i do not frequent much due to the blue and white atmosphere which i can only stand for two minutes at a time)]

but it is an example of what you can now get these days with online readers i’m supposing – where the open book idea is taken somewhat literally in the iconic sense, and the textual parts that constitute the content of ‘book’ – i.e. what has come down to us as a material object in which the paper leaves of the book on which this content was printed is bound together in a 3D form – is now rendered online, or, more precisely in this case perhaps, in a webpage format. Here you can “interact” with the “book” in a way which simulates the original pleasure of the material, via a different materiality (or ‘mode’): a mouse/touchpad in order to visually ‘turn’ the pages of the formatted-as-book, with this formatting now functioning as a frame for the text/content on the web-page.

apparently some words of wisdom included are built on expertise gained from google employees of one type or another, and one might even suspect they may be toting or promoting their own wagon to some degree…
i mean, how does WordPress make any money?

just a blurb about ‘typekit’

knew that font suitcases (what we used to call imported font types on the mac in OS7) were starting to be web-friendly, but hadn’t known where to find any info on them at all – like how to get hold of any, how to use, what was avaliable and so on.

thanks to a recent re-indulgence in twitter and following some links there, found what looks like a good site (‘typekit’) for providing a service to those who want to use different or new font typefaces on their web-pages. they have a free trial it seems, and then a reasonably-priced yearly subscription. hmm, if you like the fonts i spose you won’t want to unsubscribe and will need to keep up the payments annually or lose your neato typefaces… seeing as a year goes by fairly quickly these days it seems to me. the site itself has a number of internal links to various informative blurbs of their own, assuring us potential consumers that the upload will be robust, and offering other incentives to try. you can browse the collections or search via different foundries or developers or styles.
i mean, even if i never sign up for a free trial, i do not mind checking out what is available.

they make it sound very easy to incorporate these typefaces into your web-pages, and so of course, this draws the likes of me in.. but as usual, i wonder whether i’ll find the time to experiment enough to find it useful. what i need is a big stick and a juicy carrot to get anything done i’m afraid.

…one juicy carrot i got recently was an educational adobe package (has to be some compensation for being in the education game), ‘adobe creative suite 5 design premium; student and teacher edition’, and so i will have to start playing with that soon enough, since it is there. on my desk.
but what i need is a purpose.
someone will have to depend on me to come up with some goods. a website, a something… for me to grasp the designing and climbing the hill of ignorance nettle. i mean, it’s years since i wrangled dreamweaver, so i’m expecting some sort of spaceship to navigate with the current version.

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