Links for 2013-01-09

  • Requests: HTTP for Humans

    ‘an elegant and simple HTTP library for Python, built for human beings.’ ‘Requests is an Apache2 Licensed HTTP library, written in Python, for human beings. Python’s standard urllib2 module provides most of the HTTP capabilities you need, but the API is thoroughly broken. It was built for a different time — and a different web. It requires an enormous amount of work (even method overrides) to perform the simplest of tasks. Requests takes all of the work out of Python HTTP/1.1 — making your integration with web services seamless. There’s no need to manually add query strings to your URLs, or to form-encode your POST data. Keep-alive and HTTP connection pooling are 100% automatic, powered by urllib3, which is embedded within Requests.’

    (tags: python http urllib libraries requests via:mikeste)

  • Surprisingly Good Evidence That Real Name Policies Fail To Improve Comments

    ‘Enough theorizing, there’s actually good evidence to inform the debate. For 4 years, Koreans enacted increasingly stiff real-name commenting laws, first for political websites in 2003, then for all websites receiving more than 300,000 viewers in 2007, and was finally tightened to 100,000 viewers a year later after online slander was cited in the suicide of a national figure. The policy, however, was ditched shortly after a Korean Communications Commission study found that it only decreased malicious comments by 0.9%. Korean sites were also inundated by hackers, presumably after valuable identities. Further analysis by Carnegie Mellon’s Daegon Cho and Alessandro Acquisti, found that the policy actually increased the frequency of expletives in comments for some user demographics. While the policy reduced swearing and “anti-normative” behavior at the aggregate level by as much as 30%, individual users were not dismayed. “Light users”, who posted 1 or 2 comments, were most affected by the law, but “heavy” ones (11-16+ comments) didn’t seem to mind. Given that the Commission estimates that only 13% of comments are malicious, a mere 30% reduction only seems to clean up the muddied waters of comment systems a depressingly negligent amount. The finding isn’t surprising: social science researchers have long known that participants eventually begin to ignore cameras video taping their behavior. In other words, the presence of some phantom judgmental audience doesn’t seem to make us better versions of ourselves.’ (via Ronan Lyons)

    (tags: anonymity identity policy comments privacy politics new-media via:ronanlyons)

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  1. Posted January 10, 2013 at 12:38 | Permalink

    Requests is nice, I started playing with it a few months ago when I was writing a python script for

    My main beef with it though are the docs. They’re full of prose about the features, but are woeful for developers trying to find specific features and knobs. The code is ok, but could really benefit from being pydoc friendly.

  2. Posted January 10, 2013 at 12:43 | Permalink

    Pushover looks nice, blogged ;)

    That problem is common to a lot of Python docs IMO. they need to take a leaf from manpages and perldoc, and concentrate on what the code actually does, what exceptions it raises, etc.!

  3. Posted January 10, 2013 at 13:32 | Permalink

    Yet another way that work has ruined me then, a decent codebase that’s fairly well documented and easy to grok. is my script using requests. As you can see, the code is nice and concise. :)

    Btw, your WordPress template is annoying, it needs more stripslashes() around the form :P