March 15, 2004


I met Angie Waller three or so years ago through a friend and quickly hired her to do some freelance webwork after I realized she was sharp as a tack. One of the projects she was working on at the time was this monograph called "Data-Mining the Amazon", in which she used Amazon's recommendation engine to chart the reading patterns of conservatives and liberals. Yesterday I opened up the Arts & Ideas section in the Times and saw this, a study using the exact same methodology attributed to a Valdis Krebs (whose name sounds like the protagonist of a Philip Dick novel). Should Angie be outraged? Or should Amazon? Should we chalk it up to bad reporting by Emily Eakin, the Times writer who wrote the story? Can you "own" the idea of a map made with someone else's technology?

Posted by tmonkey at March 15, 2004 08:28 AM
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