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Horizons

Horizon highlights – July 25 weekend

By / July 25, 2008



Our regular roundup of noteworthy sci-tech stories from the web includes: the mightiest material of them all, Google's answer to Wikipedia, and why isn't there a better way to say "www"?

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If you think I missed a great story, feel free to post your links as a comment down below. Let’s kick it off:

YouTube MarketingThings Are Not What They Stream
" 'Stealth viral' video ads – i.e., clips that betray few obvious signs that they're part of a campaign – have invaded the Internet. You may think you've just seen a ball girl at a minor-league baseball game scale a wall to catch a foul. Wrong: She's a stunt woman, and that's a Gatorade ad. Did you recently send your friends that kick-ass security-cam clip of an office worker going berserk? If so, you took part in director Timur Bekmambetov's bizarre stealth advertisement for his film 'Wanted.' Ray-Ban, Levi's, Nike, and other brands have also recently launched similar campaigns." [Via Slate]
From the Monitor's archiveMany new ‘friends’ to be made online, but what about dollars?: "Social network websites are booming. If only they could turn a profit."

Tough stuffStrongest Material Ever Tested
"The one-atom-thick sheets of carbon conduct electrons better than silicon and have been made into fast, low-power transistors. Now, for the first time, researchers have measured the intrinsic strength of graphene, and they've confirmed it to be the strongest material ever tested." [Via Technology Review]

Geek speakHelp us find a better way to pronounce www
" 'Double-u-double-u-double-u' does not trip off the tongue. Yet I seem to say and hear it hundreds of times a day.... 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy' author Douglas Adams remarked that 'the World Wide Web is the only thing I know of whose shortened form takes three times longer to say than what it's short for.' You might expect a better way to emerge and spread, as new words usually do. But the www has been around for more than 15 years, and we're still waiting." [Via New Scientist]
From the Monitor's archiveMore geek speak hits Merriam-Webster: "Each year, the dictionary company acknowledges about 100 new words that most people have been using for years. Today the lexicographers announced 2008’s list. Webster welcomed several sci/tech terms to the English language this year."

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