Do you know of any work, Valdis or Marc to map scientific networks (who’s collaborating / publishing with / citing / getting funded by whom in which field) as a means of discovery? E.g. if you wanted to explore the current developments in a field of science you’re not a part of yourself, to explore who is currently core, a new comer, or an interesting boundary spanner in a field.

[rant] Increasingly, in the contexts I operate in, I feel the distinction between data and information is something of a pre-digital pre-networked hang-up. Yes there’s a difference between e.g. measurements (-1, 0, 1, 2, 4) and an informative conclusion drawn from it (the world’s getting hotter), but in the common perception of both data and information as objects, there isn’t much useful distinction anymore between a database and a document. When digitised, they’re both objects that can be either, as it is in the eyes of the beholder and their use case. Context as always is key. If it was used as data, it was. If the same thing was used as information, it was. (An example is the European Commission’s documents. Information to most of us, but data for Google’s translation algorithms as its the largest body of text on the planet carefully translated into 23 languages)

There is often a difference in difficulty of processing it with machines, yes. Most what is called information in that sense is badly packaged badly marked-up data to machines. Structured data with meta-data and expressed relations (linked data e.g.) in that sense are large documents hard to read for human eyes. But is there any practical gain in terms of agency by making the distinction between data and information, in the context of digital processes? You can make a distinction between a datum (’42’) and a collection of that datum with more of it or other stuff (‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’). But a singular datum on its own is not what ever happens in real use cases where we discuss data and information as separate objects. As a pragmatist, I find I’ve mostly dropped the distinction.

Oh and please don’t extend the data-information sequence to data-information-knowledge-wisdom. The 1970’s DIKW model’s been the CS/IS mantra for decades, but there is no linearity or hierarchy between those four terms, and the implication the latter two are objectifiable is actively destructive. The D-I part served once to help explain how data was a strategic resource, which is still a very valid proposition, more than ever even as data is a geo-political factor now, but don’t assume a wider purpose of the model than that.


This, it seems to me, is why looking at a system, sub-system and supra-system is a key dimension of TRIZ innovation methods. And it takes having an overview of all three, regardless of where you will apply yourself. (ht Alper)

Read Disruption Theory is Real, but Wrong (

Disruption is happening, and the tech industry is having a dynamic and revolutionary impact on industries around the world for precisely the reasons that Christensen articulates in his work. But the units of resolution aren’t right; maybe not everywhere, but that certainly feels to be the case in today’s tech world.

Voor iedereen die zich bezig houdt met digitale transformatie bij de overheid is Maike Klip’s weblog over service design de moeite van het volgen waard. Toegevoegd aan de feedreader. Met dank aan Alper voor de tip.

Read Klipklaar

Hi, ik ben Maike Klip en dit is mijn researchblog. Ik onderzoek hoe de digitale overheid een begripvolle verbinding kan hebben met mensen in Nederland. Als je nieuw bent op mijn blog en midden in mijn zoektocht valt, begin dan hier en ik praat je bij.

Goed nieuws. Mijn eenmanszaak krijgt eindelijk een BTW-nummer dat niet mijn BSN-nummer bevat. Dat nummer moet op je website, je brieven en facturen staan, en daarmee geef ik dus gedwongen persoonsgebonden gegevens bloot. Dat is strijdig met de AVG. Per 1 januari 2020 kan ik in externe communicatie een ander nummer hanteren.


My site until now didn’t indicate very well in which language my postings are written. I write here mostly in English, but also sometimes use two other languages, Dutch and German.

My friend Peter pointed out to me that if he reads Franks blog in his feedreader and clicks on the link his browser automatically translates it into English. As Peter suggested, this is most likely because Frank’s site declares Dutch as its language, and mine declares English. I decided to look into it and see if I could change that.

The language declaration Peter pointed to is the very first statement in the source code for this page:

Frank’s site in the same space says his site is in Dutch.

Frank also publishes in English sometimes, and then the language setting would be factually incorrect. Peter just wouldn’t notice as he wouldn’t attempt to translate English, his native language.

My company’s website in contrast declares three languages, by giving a different url for English and German, next to the regular Dutch. However in this case it is about the same or similar pieces of content made available in different languages. Which is not the same use case as my blog, where there is different content in different languages.

I concluded I needed to figure out how to a) for the category archive pages for Dutch and German postings declare the right language (because I mark any posting not in English with a separate category corresponding to its language), and b) for individual postings not in English declare the right language.

First I looked at what the W3C says about indicating content languages. It turns out Frank and I both do it right, the html statement is the place to declare the default language of a website. In Frank’s case Dutch, in my case English. The W3C goes on to say that any other languages should be indicated in the location where they are used. This e.g. would allow me to indicate the correct language even if I use a non-English phrase in the middle of an otherwise English text, hetgeen een mooie oplossing is voor automatische vertaalsoftware. Which looks like this in html:

This means that what I needed to do was for the category archive pages for Dutch and German, as well as for individual postings, find the right spot in the source of a page to declare the correct language. I did this in the WordPress Theme I am using, or rather in the child theme (which allows you to specify any deviations from the original theme, while keeping the rest of the theme as it was).

For both the Dutch and German category pages I created separate templates, called category-nederlands.php and category-deutsch.php, which corresponds with the name of the category in my WordPress instance. At the top of those pages I added a language indicator where the main part of the page starts.

For individual blogposts it is a bit more difficult, as you need to be able to determine first if a posting is in another language than English. I adapted the single.php template, which renders individual postings. There I added a line of code to see if the posting is in Dutch or German, by checking if it is in the corresponding category.

This results in either adding lang=”nl-nl” or lang=”de-de” to postings in those languages, in the same location as for the category archive pages shown above.

Hopefully this now allows browsers to correctly detect the language of content on my site.
I’m not entirely done yet. Because in some overviews, like the front page, individual postings that are not in English are not rightly marked with the correct language yet. Only if you go to that posting itself, will the language be correctly set. But this can be solved in a similar way, I assume. [UPDATE 2019-10-14] I’ve also edited the index.php and category.php templates to check if a posting is in the Dutch or German language category, and add a language declaration using a <div lang="nl-nl"> around the posting. For the index.php I do that only for the home page. This works, but as far as I can tell e.g. Google Translate for ‘detect language’ only checks the default language of a page. As I am not here to facilitate Google, I am currently satisfied that I at least do now provide clear meta-data about the language of postings I publish.[/UPDATE]
A final step I’d like to add is automatically insert machine translation links into my rss feed items, although I’m still not entirely sure that would be useful.