Back in a Bit

Finding easy-to-read web content

In its current version, Google Accessible Search looks at a number of signals by examining the HTML markup found on a web page. It tends to favor pages that degrade gracefully–that is, pages with few visual distractions, and pages that are likely to render well with images turned off. Google Accessible Search is built on Google Co-op’s technology, which improves search results based on specialized interests.

Art brings steam power to the digital revolution

In a field near Sandwich in Kent, Alan Gibbs, a local model maker, is firing up his steam engine. Its chimney is coughing out irritated little clouds of smuts and its pistons are bobbing up and down.
At a table, curator Rob Tufnell is using an Apple Mac powered by the engine. For this is the Steam Powered Internet Machine: the latest deeply eccentric project from Turner-prizewinning artist Jeremy Deller and his collaborator Alan Kane. ‘We were thinking about something that connects the industrial revolution and the digital revolution,’ said Deller. Kane added: ‘They are worlds apart but there’s also a proximity. The steam age and the digital age are not so far apart.’

Wrightspeed X1

It all started in 2005 when Ian Wright, Wrightspeed founder and CEO, built the X1–to date the fastest street legal electric car in the world.The X1 is a concept car and a test platform based on a modified Ariel Atom. It is not a production car, and never will be. The X1 proves that electric drive can deliver extreme performance without compromising its intrinsic efficiency.

Watch your language — most of you are wrong

Google is usually great for helping sort out uses of English, so you can check the difference between a pedaller and a peddler — though that doesn’t stop Guardian journalists getting it wrong, of course. But there are times when the majority of people get things wrong. In today’s Guardian, Patrick Barkham reports that “according to the Oxford English Corpus, a database of a billion words, dozens of traditional phrases are now more commonly misspelled than rendered correctly in written English.”