Yale’s digitizing collection and some quick math

Yale recently announced they are going to scan and post very high res images of their “collections of art, natural history, books, and maps, as well as photos, audio, and video documenting people, places, and events that form part of Yale’s institutional identity and contribution to scholarship”.

There’s 250,000 images out there already to start with, but there are 12,000,000 items left to scan. (And all of this is supposedly coming from only ONE of their museum collections!)

Assuming they’re going to scan 15 pieces an hour on a high-end scanner, that means it’s going to take 800,000 hours to scan 12 million pieces.

Scanning 15 pieces an hour for 8 hours a day straight will take 100,000 days.

100,000 days divided by 365 days in a year would make it a 273 year job… for for one person.

Add 99 more people scanning at the same rate and the entire 12 million piece archive can be done in 2.7 years.

That is a LOT of artwork left to scan.

The main search window for the Yale collection is here. A sample list view of what is already online is here.

Cannot start the download because the file is missing or invalid – iPad fix

If you’re subscribing to a Conde Nast magazine and are downloading copies to your iPad, there’s a small bug to watch out for.

After consecutively downloading 6 issues in any Conde Nast magazine app (New Yorker, Wired, etc), you will get a “ERROR DURING DOWNLOAD : Cannot start the download because the file is missing or invalid.”

Restart the iPad and you can download more issues. (Closing and re-opening the app doesn’t fix it.)

Hopefully the next Conde Nast magazine app release will fix this (or increase the cache/timeout).

Wall Street Journal – Final South Texas delivery resolution

I just got an email from the the Senior Manager of Customer Care at The Wall Street Journal this morning.

The solution to that delivery problem I’ve been having?

“Dear Subscriber,

I am writing to inform you about changes in our production and delivery operations that will impact the delivery of your Journal subscription.

At Dow Jones and Company, publisher of The Wall Street Journal, we work very hard to provide our customers with the highest quality delivery service.  However, recent changes in transportation logistics have made it impossible to continue delivering your Monday – Saturday Journal on the day of publication.  Effective for the issue date of June 9, 2011, your weekday Journal subscription will be delivered by carrier or by the United States Postal Service, as it is today, but one day after publication date.

Well, shit.

Getting the newspaper in the mail? And assuming they mail it immediately on the day of production, that’s still going to take 3 or 4 days after the publication date to get here.

I wanted the newspaper on the same day it was printed. That’s why I skipped out on the Washington Post and the New York Times postal mail delivery and chose The Wall Street Journal home delivery. After all, old news is… well, old news.

The email also had a link to a 30 day subscription to WSJ online, but if I wanted that format, I would’ve signed up for it on my Kindle.

So that’s the end of it. The only “real” newspaper’s delivery in deeeep south Texas is now kaput.

The fact I can’t get a real newspaper delivered every day to my home address tells me three things…

#1: Transportation logistics? That’s the reason the newspaper quit this area? There’s no internet-and-print option to a local newspaper printer? They’re still delivering newspapers on trucks? I’m going to feel pretty rotten if I was the only reason some poor semi truck driver had to come all the way down to the Texas valley!

Which brings me to…

#2: There’s a wide open market down here for a company that will print and deliver “real” newspapers. The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times and (shudder) USA TODAY are newspapers I’ve read before that are completely unavailable down here in the Texas valley. The local rag is a sad joke, and maybe a “city hub” newspaper printer could sell and distribute a bundle of the top 5 papers to the local schools, libraries, bookstores, etc.

#3: I may need to move since no major newspaper delivers to the area I live in. That’s a pretty big “WARNING! DANGER WILL ROBINSON!” sign right there.

Seriously, thanks for trying Wall Street Journal. It was great while it lasted. I’ll get your print edition again. Someday.

No Wall Street Journal for 26 consecutive issues!

Just a quick status update on the original Wall Street Journal delivery article. As of May 2nd, I haven’t received one single newspaper. That’s 26 consecutive Wall Street Journals I’ve missed because of “production issues”. (I get M-Sat only. Sundays were never an option and there was no Memorial Day delivery.)

Every damn time I call customer service I am told I will be credited the issue, and the missed issue will be delivered with tomorrow’s paper. The “urgent matter” is also escalated to the regional distributor for kicks.

I’m tired of paying for something I haven’t received. I’ll keep posting these updates going until this mess is resolved.

Texas valley subscribers beware! Delivery of the Wall Street Journal is not reliable!