Ten Second News (Beta)

Morning Ed: World {2017.12.26.Tu}( 79 )

[Wo1] I’m curious how much of this is conscientious objection and how much is safety concern.

[Wo2] #MehToo

[Wo3] Paulina Neudling looks at the sexual assault crisis in Sweden, and where it puts feminists.

[Wo4] If this isn’t a dream argument for libertarians and “unintended consequences” I don’t know what is.

[Wo5] Jonathan Last wrote about this in his book as it relates to the US, but apparently parents spending more time with their children is a North Atlantic phenomenon. Except France and Slovenia.

[Wo6] In Hong Kong, they have holes in buildings because dragons.

[Wo7] Is decline a choice? The story of Hamburg and Lubeck, one of which adapted and the other declined.

[Wo8] Better late than never.

[Wo9] One of the reasons Gorbachev through in the towel, apparently, was our promise not to expand NATO eastward.

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Morning Ed: Classic Technology {2017.12.25.X}( 14 )

[CT1] Old school portable drives.

[CT2] Wasn’t this a thing in Dave?

[CT3] Matt Shapiro says if you want something to last, digital isn’t the way to go.

[CT4] The history of Minitel, the French government’s web before the Web.

[CT5] Everything you ever wanted to know about the invention of dynamite.

[CT6] Before there was Facebook, there was CollegeClub. Did anyone else use that one? It was pretty central to my life for a year or two.

[CT7] If you’re above a certain age, you might remember OS/2. Turns out it’s still around in some limited capacities.

[CT8] Watch a double-decker bus get totaled.


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Morning Ed: Arts & Entertainment {2017.12.22.F}( 29 )

[AE1] A look at the accidental success of Casablanca.

[AE2] William Bradley tries to come to terms with the fact that Frank Miller’s politics are not to his liking and trying to like his work anyway. Must be hard.

[AE3] Tobias Carroll looks at why stories over time rhyme.

[AE4] I always wondered whatever happened to Mira Sorvino. Apparently, she was a victim of a Weinstein blacklist. The blacklist wouldn’t have worked if Hollywood hadn’t let it, and it seems to me they need to get to work on some rectification and start giving her (and Ashley Judd, who also seemed to disappear suddenly ) parts.

[AE5] If this is right and the Fox Network is in trouble, I am inclined to lament that fact… but I can’t remember the last must-see Fox TV show. Even CW has some I would miss. The Fox network has some pretty strong real estate, though. Seems weird that Disney would just give that up, though the alternative is that it competes against itself. The last network to try to compete against itself in this regard was… Fox, with its MyTV project. MyTV didn’t take off and became a syndication hub, which ironically could be Fox’s fate (which would be a return to its roots).

[AE6] Discrimination against older actresses (not even old in any real sense, just older than young) is an ongoing problem.

[AE7] Jordan Ecarma writes about vaguely Christmas movies. Relatedly, I still need to do my rousing defense of Lifetime movies.

[AE8] Some of these are more impressive than others. Things like “giant faces over little people” are pretty obvious.

[AE9] Memo to Tolkien, that’s not how mountains work.


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Morning Ed: United States {2017.12.20.W}( 37 )

[US1] How Brit autocompletes for the various states of the United States. Wisconsin cracked me up, as did the different answers for the Dakotas.

[US2] Sometimes the argument against immigration is a jobs one. Sometimes people will expressly sacrifice jobs to keep immigrants out.

[US3] Sexual harassment scandals, not just for men anymore. Though also for men.

[US4] James Lileks looks at the history of American utoipias, in their various forms.

[US5] Saleno Zito looks at depression and suicide among farmers, which is evidently a problem.

[US6] A first-eye look at our atomic history. Today, it seems like Los Alamos needs to shape up.

[US7] I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: We are too big of a country to be trying to stuff all our talent into a couple of areas. Fortunately, we are branching out.

[US8] Michael Junge argues that we’re being negligent with our navy and Hal Brands exposes what he considers myths about our defense spending.

[US9] Wasn’t this a story in Ghost World?

[US0] It was:

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Morning Ed: Money {2017.12.18.M}( 171 )

[$1] Larry Kummer explains why the 1% wins.

[$2] I never thought about it, but in the same sense that UHauls to Detroit from Austin are a fraction of the price of the reverse trip, this makes sense.

[$3] Adventures in regulatory capture.

[$4] Scott Shackleford writes about the cousin of the Jones Act, which may be preventing cruises on the Mississippi. I took a Mississippi cruise once. It was unusual for a cruise in that the servers were all American, which meant that not only were paid 30x what you get on Carnival et al but they weren’t actually as good at or interested in their jobs.

[$5] Wired is mad at the techbros.

[$6] Amazon is apparently pushing its drivers hard.

[$7] If you email while you’re on vacation, you’re ruining everything for everybody.

[$8] David McWilliams argues that even as people have become more productive, wages keep being low due to global competition.

[$9] Ready, AIM Fired. Towards the end, they were serving our troops. It’s interesting to consider how close AOL and Yahoo both were to being a Facebook-like social network, if only they’d had the vision.

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Linky Friday: Critters & Coffee( 160 )


bomb sniffing dogs photo

Image by SGPhotography77 Linky Friday: Critters & Coffee

[Pe1] Shifty little boogers, they are.

[Pe2] The CIA gives a little insight into training dogs and what happens when dogs aren’t cut out for the work. While some dogs don’t like working, others really do. RIP.

[Pe3] Even the earliest dogs had leashes, evidently.

[Pe4] I can live without the treat dispenser, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see there being a “pet package” to more of these vehicles.

[Pe5] Cats are unusual.

[Pe6] It’s apparently no longer enough for police to just shoot pet dogs. There must be even more trauma.


[Sp1] Flat-earthers held their first conference. The problem with the earth being flat is that if it were flat things would be different.

[Sp2] A meteorite lit up the Norwegian sky.

[Sp3] A look at the mysterious space cigar, and maybe a doppelganger solar system.

[Sp4] I’m almost positive this was an episode of Outer Limits.

[Sp5] Teaching the question: Do dark matter and dark energy exist? Thousands of comic book plots depend on them so I hope so.

[Sp6] Nathan Robinson explores the conflict between space exploration and capitalism.

Sports & Games:

high school football photo

Image by Tom Hannigan Linky Friday: Critters & Coffee

[SG1] Here’s a look at what the CFL is doing to reduce concussions and other big hits. People talk a lot about the games, but I’m pretty sure most of the damage is done in practice. And then after football, then hockey?

[SG2] When you’re on the wrong side of righteousness, you never know when you’re going to provoke vengeance. With a sports angle!

[SG3] Hazing, rape, and high school football.

[SG4] If you’ve ever wondered why you are getting the NFL games you’re getting on your local TV, here you go.

[SG5] One bad formula, a lot of ruined soccer.

[SG6] Is Louisville really broken, though? They may be suing their old coach, but he got them into the ACC while rival Cincinnati flounders in the AAC and no scandal can undo that.

Food & Drink:

[FD1] This is a really – and nuanced – good take on cultural appropriation and food. {via Maribou}

[FD2] Deep fry it. For the environment.

[FD3] Coffee shops don’t offer WiFi out of generosity. The WiFi is often why we’re there.

[FD4] A court has ruled that the tea must be served and the tea store cannot close.

[FD5] Introducing the Whopper Dropper!

[FD6] I have long been off-put by plexiglass windows at convenience stores and occasionally eateries, but this is absolute horse-pucky.


paul sorvino photo

Image by david_shankbone Linky Friday: Critters & Coffee

[Po1] You were supposed to treat them badly. You weren’t supposed to treat me badly!

[Po2] Jim Pethhokoukis looks at universal basic income experiments around the world.

[Po3] William Bradley tries to come to terms with the fact that Frank Miller’s politics are not to his liking and trying to like his work anyway. Must be hard.

[Po4] This cast list is pretty good. Even know he’s old, I think you gotta give the Manafort role to Paul Sorvino. And, at the risk of ruining The West Wing, Martin Sheen would make a really good Trump.

[Po5] I recently commented that some of Roy Moore’s comments have been deliberately ambiguous on the subject of slavery. It is apparently a real tactic for Daily Stormers to be deliberately ambiguous in their anti-semitism and the earnestness thereof.

[Po6] The EU makes itself really hard to defend sometimes.

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Morning Ed: Education & Speech {2017.12.14.Th}( 102 )

[ES1] Why is it so difficult to learn fraction?

[ES2] Dan Wang on the Girardian terror of college. Some good points, but seems the inevitable consequence of all the great things about college.

[ES3] A look at everything that can go wrong during admissions interviews.

[ES4] Elite schools are seeking ruralian students. I am wary of watering down standards, but maybe the FFA/4H penalty should have been cause for concern.

[ES5] David Perry argues that we need to learn to stop worrying and love tech in the classroom.

[ES6] From Lee Jussim and Akeela Careem, a good nuanced look at Freedom of Speech from the point of view of silenced speech and stiffled speech, whether from counterspeech of hostile environs.

[ES7] Jesse Singal takes on some of the bad lefty arguments against Free Speech. He’s also written ahout how Millennials are not especially bad on speech issues.

[ES8] Chris Beck is really pissed off at the ACLU.

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Morning Ed: Society {2017.12.13.W}( 56 )

[So1] YouTube Kids is just an ocean of oddity. My little girl is just fascinated watching grownups play with figures. But nothing weirder than that, thankfully.

[So2] Kristen Berman and Dan Ariely want to ban small talk with the notion that doing so would force us to discuss more important things.

[So3] Teens are anonymously targeting themselves on line for reasons that I guess kind of make sense in a way and everything is messed up.

[So4] Crispin Sartwell takes aim at the Muppets, and Sesame Street. I notice that he leaves Curious George off his list of ire. Which is smart, because Curious George is by far the best PBS cartoon. Peg + Cat is also really good. Sesame Street is okay, but pretty unambitious these days.

[So5] The case against limiting yourself to writing what you know.

[So6] This is a really cool idea. I would think so, of course, since I already “audiobook” TV shows.

[So7] A couple years ago, the New York Times investigated why it’s so difficult for 30-somethings to make friends.

[So8] I wasn’t as big into Shel Silverstein as some people, but I’m still surprised I didn’t know this existed.

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Morning Ed: Health {2017.12.12.T}( 115 )

[He1] The ship has sailed on continuity of care, I fear, both over there and over here.

[He2] My wife’s last two employers have leaned very heavily on Professional Obligation to keep her working in excess of 60 hours a week and get the family accustomed to her not coming home for days on end (her last couple months resulted in over $1500 in hotel bills because she was too tired to drive home at the end of the day), and while EMR shoulders much of the blame, but physician burnout is ultimately going to do its thing.

[He3] On the other hand, hospitals are facing some really big financial pressures, and have reasons to be pushing physicians as hard as they are. One expects that they will become among the biggest voices pushing for things like…

[He4] Nurses vs the AMA. If the physicians want to handle all of this, they needed to make sure they had the numbers to do so. I am married to a doctor and it took me nine months to establish care. While the role of the AMA and physicians in all of this is exaggerated, whether out of greed or professional pride they have been on the wrong side of this until somewhat recently.

[He5] Ooooh, a successful uterus transplant birth.

[He6] Everything is more dangerous than everything else. BUT! Some good news on vaping.

[He7] In addition to being grotesque graphically and spiritually, “plain packaging” laws may also be just flat ineffective.

[He8] If there’s a lot of pollution outside, don’t bother exercising.

[He9] Pollution has deleterious effects on job performance. Makes sense. Not good for China.

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Morning Ed: SciFi {2017.12.11.M}( 39 )

[SF1] How to construct a wormhole to make backwards time travel possible.

[SF2] This is really going to take us to some weird places. (Might help us prevent idiocracy, though.)

[SF3] A look at farming and time-travel, reviewing relevant books (and adding substantially to my reading list).

[SF4] Isn’t this from an episode of Outer Limits? Except with humans?

[SF5] Long-distance relationships… with touching.

[SF6] Would they face more discrimination or less than people who can’t get laid? Seems to me that would be a really easy thing to stay in the closet about.

[SF7] What monk philosophy can teach AI.

[SF8] I dunno, things didn’t start getting bad on the Matrix until the robots stopped looking like humans.

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Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes( 90 )

Note: Will is out on assignment. This week’s Linky Friday is being put together by Tod, who may or may not be posting some links Will has posted in the past. If this is the case, apologies in advance.


Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes[P1] Sometimes political ads really do work on me —but in the opposite way the candidate intended.

[P2] Oh for Pet’s sake. Can we at least wait until 1920 for this?!

[P3] In fairness, you’re probably always going to look really, really smart when you’re standing next to this guy.

[P4] That one thing liberals point to as proof that governments work is becoming a sign that they are failing.

[P5} This CNN interview might well be the purist form of Trumpism I have ever seen, but for me its biggest takeaway is that Roy Moore’s official spokesperson has never, ever applied for a library card.

[P6] In a different timeline, bungling something this badly would make you a laughingstock among your peers — especially if were the rule and not the exception. In this timeline, however, you receive awards and accolades from the families of Supreme Court Justices for your bungling.

Men Vs. Women

[MW1] This piece by Claire Dederer should be required reading for men, even as those who read through to the end will be surprised at the places she goes.

[MW2] More proof that the internet is not for the weak of heart.

[MW3] There are monsters, and then there are monsters with legal teams.

Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes

[MW4] Say what you want about the British, but at least they s**tcan their predators once they’re publicly outed.

[MW5] It’s easy to get caught up in the belief that, what with today’s #metoo movement, society allowing women to be victims to powerful predators is this totally brand-new thing. But actually it’s pretty old. No, older than that, I mean.  No, I’m saying you need to go back really, really far in our history.

[MW6] Franken, Shmanken. Both parties have always been more than happy to quietly allow sexual harassment and assault to fester at their pleasure. But are we now seeing the emergence of an overtly pro-sexual harassment and assault party?

[MW7] Slate’s executive editor talks about being the object of her boss’s desire — and everything working out quite nicely, thank you very much. And speaking of publications I rarely say nice things about, good for Time magazine.

“The Best People”

[BP1] Not just the best in 2017. The best in history.

[BP2] Sobering news for the #nevertrump set: there may well be ways to clean up the White House, but it does not look as if the Logan Act is one of them.

Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes[BP3] Mooch!

[BP4] I have always assumed that if there was any weakness in the Trump camp for Mueller to uncover that might potentially take them down, it wasn’t going to be proof of collusion — it was going to be proof of laundering. We shall see, I guess.

[BP5] This just seems like a bad Ocean’s 11 sequel waiting to happen.

[BP6] Hey man, whatever two consenting adults do in private is no business of mine.

Life On the Fringes

[LF1] I mean, it’s not like there were any signs that could have tipped them off at the outset.

[LF2] People are giving this New York Times piece a bad time for not being sufficiently anti-Nazi, but for me the problem with the article was that the reporter didn’t seem to care enough about it to report out the story. The Atlantic, on the other hand, gets its business done.

[LF3] This was probably inevitable.

Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes[LF4] If your boss passed you up once again up for that big promotion, you might consider the possibility that your problem is an infestation of demons.

[LF5] Speaking of me, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little giddy that my next commission is to go out and cover the fine people at Nxivm.

[LF6] “You don’t make deals with God. If it was Jamie’s time, there was nothing I coulda done. He was gonna go anyway.

[LF7] Here’s a story about online bullying leading to suicide that should be receiving a lot more attention than it is. (Indeed, someone should write a piece about all the reasons no one does seem to care about this story.)


[P1] It turns out it’s a mixed blessing that we don’t get to really be there for our own birth.

[P2] Hey, they don’t call it the Sweet Science for nothing.

[P3] Sometimes you have to root for both sides to lose.

Linky Friday: To Hell In a Handbasket, But With Snakes[P4] People back east are always asking me if Portlanders prefer to call Lyft or Uber when they don’t have a car and need to get somewhere, and I am forced to admit that, as always with PDX, it’s a little more complicated.

[P5] This piece on a lake in Africa and its role in an unspeakably terrible humanitarian disaster is really quite long, and very much worth your time.

[P8] It was always just a matter of time before some hipster argued that choosing to access almost any indie band you wanted  rather than what some radio station force fed you made you a sell-out.

[P9] There are unintended negative consequences to everything we do — including prison reform.

[P7] “I don’t know if you know this, but hamsters be fucking.”

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Morning Ed: Women & Men {2017.12.07.Th}( 46 )

[WM1] Long term relationships are about to get more touchy? [Ed Note, item originally was intended for a different link and was altered to match the current link]

[WM2] Helen Pluckrose looks at a global-historical look at the patriarchy.

[WM3] In case you ever wanted to know what sex in a Marxist Guerilla camp in Colombia is like, Vice has you covered.

[WM4] Women are willing to pay a lot to avoid sexual harassment.

[WM5] When it comes to gender strengths and weaknesses, is it all in the brains?

[WM6] Leonard Sax writes of self-objectification and why stricter dress codes may benefit girls.

[WM7] Does love at first sight exist? I think it exists but is not necessarily something to cooperate with.

[WM8] We know the problems with Matt Lauer and Mark Helperin, but Shannon Van Sant says they are products of their culture.

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Morning Ed: World {2017.12.06.W}( 14 )

[Wo1] This map is very interesting, though I would prefer to see it broken down between say 1933 to 1950 and 1950 to present-day.

[Wo2] Giving up on the west, educated young Africans are heading home.

[Wo3] In their first election ever, Canadians had the United States on their mind. Among other things.

[Wo4] Is there any way we can shift the volcanic pressure away from some place where it will destroy humanity to somewhere in the Pacific where it could create a new continent? (If you didn’t know, science was not my best class in school.)

[Wo5] Even when there’s no river, there’s a chance the settlement was because of a river.

[Wo6] The whole Florida Man phenomenon is based on the fact that Florida has more sunshine laws (no pun intended) than other states, which allows reporters to scope around until they have weird stuff. On the opposite end of the spectrum is Kansas.

[Wo7] Erica Grieder explores five myths about Texas.

[Wo8] Sam Kriss investigates the Aztecs’ whole “World is gonna end in 2012” thing.

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Tech Tuesday, Bacteria Still Rule Edition (12/5/17)( 26 )


AERO1 – Not water, just sand, but still impressive what we can learn just by looking from far away.

AERO2 – More about what we learned from looking at our interstellar cigar.

AERO3 – I love the idea, but I’m left wondering where they think they are going to get 160km of superconducting wire that can readily form a loop?

AERO4 – For serious citizen scientists, and serious kooks who want to know how many extra layers of tin foil to put on their hats today.

AERO5 – Well if we can’t have them on Earth, let’s NUKE MARS!

AERO6 – High altitude drones are way cheaper than satellites, to build and deploy.  Honestly, tech like this, parked over a city, can remove the need for concepts like net neutrality (yes, I’m being intentionally vague about why, so we can talk about it in the comments).

AERO7 – Another entrant into the electric commercial aviation field.  Given my employer is part of the partnership, I’ll be interested to see what work comes my way.


ARCH1 – This is a fantastic idea!  Now just extend this to Olympic games and we’ll be set.  Hell, extend it to every professional sport.

ARCH2 – More ideas for living on the water.  On a related note, I really hope Moody’s follows through on this.


BIO1 – This is not permission to indulge at Cinnabon.

BIO2 – Not the first time I’ve seen nanoparticles being employed to hunt down cancer cells.  Does anyone know if any of these nanoparticle therapies are actually past clinical trials and in use today?

BIO3 – I haven’t been too worried about the bees, since restoring a collapsed hive isn’t hard or terribly expensive, but it’s still a problem that needs addressing, so it’s good to see work like this.

BIO4 – A simple enzyme, really?

BIO5C, G, A, T, X, Y

BIO6 – Evolution so fast we can use it to do computations?  Am I reading this right?  Also, teaching bacteria to do our chemistry for us, but don’t let them learn how to resist our antibiotics..  Also, turning E. Coli into a sensor grid that can record and report data.

BIO7 – Plants, the silent spies.  My prediction:  DARPA will engineer a strain of Dandelion that blooms a different color if it’s in the presence of a given isotope (something you’d only find around a nuclear weapon site).  Spread the seeds over the DPRK.


ENRG1 – I applaud efforts to turn Bio-Waste into energy, but I’m starting to wonder if there aren’t simply too many different approaches that only know how to deal with a too limited set of biomass.  What happens when the available biomass can’t keep pace with the energy demand, or the biomass supply dries up?  People need to start thinking bigger.

ENRG2 – Now this is just too cool, or hot, or smoothly going from hot to cool , or something!  (PS Thermal battery unlike anything you’ve ever heard of)

ENRG3 – Did anyone not see this coming?

ENRG4 – It can turn sunlight into electricity!  It can split water molecules! It can make Julianne fries!

ENRG5Graphene popcorn can make your phone battery charge way faster!

ENRG6 – I’m not up on the chemistry here, but the words ‘Magnesium’ and ‘non-flammable’ are not words I often see together.


MAT1Superelastic chainmail tires for a future lunar rover.  Won’t be seeing these on a NASCAR track (speed rating is gonna be very low), but it’s still a pretty cool variation of a Twheel.

MAT2 – Adding graphene to asphalt could double the lifespan of asphalt, thanks to the heat transfer abilities of graphene.  Sounds reasonable, but I’ll hold off on getting too excited until the test kilometer has gone a couple of years.

MAT3 – Looking to sea urchin spines for super strong concrete.  It’s all about the micro and nano structures.  What fascinates me isn’t that we’ve figured these things out, it’s that we can reliably get these micro and nano structures to form without having to assemble things molecule by molecule.

MAT4 – Graphene sheets could be used as a near infinite power source thanks to ambient heat.  Some comments:  First, the idea of extracting useful amounts of energy from micro and nano level vibrations isn’t out there, although AFAIK, it hasn’t been used for any kind of commercial application (which is why this is in Materials instead of Energy), but the theory is sound.  Second, Graphene is only 2D in the sense that it’s only one molecule thick, it’s not truly 2D.

MAT5 – Speaking of carbon, the nano-tubes are still kicking it as water filters.


PHYS1 – This is a comic book origin just waiting to be used.


TECH1Soft robots seems to be all the rage these days, although perhaps only halfheartedly.

TECH2 – Last time, I linked to research that worked to remove the vibrations from 3D print-head movements to speed up printing, now they are increasing the pressure and heating efficiency to improve speeds.


TRANS1 – Speaking of improving 3D printing, the first 3D printed ships screw has been approved for use.   Ship screws, be they solid or variable pitch, are expensive to produce because they have to be cast and machined to the finished shape.  Building the casting molds is itself expensive (the curves have to be precise), and do not lend themselves to custom blade profiles.  This should permit some greater ability to play with designs, and reduce the cost of replacing screws.

TRANS2 – This showed up a bit sooner than I expected.

TRANS3 – Using internal air bladders in tanker trailers to reducing sloshing.

TRANS4 – That is some novel application of hydrofoils.

TRANS5High-res LIDAR for self driving vehicles.  I want to see how it works in the rain, snow, or fog, but it does make some pretty pictures.

Wacky, Weird, and Wonderful

WWW1 – A discussion of the public trust in scientific authority.  Via Pillsy.

WWW2Math epitaphs.  Also, if you aren’t checking out this excellent blog regularly, you should be if you have any interest in math.

Image by rulenumberone2 Tech Tuesday, Bacteria Still Rule Edition (12/5/17)

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Morning Ed: Labor {2017.12.04.M}( 80 )

[Lb1] Maybe in addition to trying to protect workers from their employers, we need to do more to protect them from you.

[Lb2] There are, it turns out, some pretty good reasons why women don’t report sexual harassment.

[Lb3] This reminds me of that pier video from Season Two of The Wire.

[Lb4] There are multiple problems here. At least three that I can count off the top of my head.

[Lb5] This is depressing and not at all surprising.

[Lb6] Nathan Robinson looks at the various forms of harassment, sexual and otherwise.

[Lb7] The future lies with nerds and nurses.

[Lb8] Bryan Menegus writes about how Amazon is being carried by the gig economy.

[Lb9] On promoting women in tech fields, you’re damned if you don’t, and possibly damned if you do.


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Morning Ed: Family {2017.12.01.Fr}( 44 )

[Fm1] Coal families are less likely to divorce during bear times because, it appears, they’re less likely to rush into marriage during boom times.

[Fm2] A surprising amount of childlessness in the UK is involuntary.

[Fm3] This makes sense: Parents who are married are more likely to stick together in part because their pregnancies are more likely to be planned.

[Fm4] How co-parenting works between parents after a violent marriage.

[Fm5] A glimpse at the process of choosing a sperm donor. Relatedly, are women receiving the counseling they should on freezing their eggs?

[Fm6] With the economy in recovery, why aren’t we getting recovery babies? It’s easier to bring birth rates down than to bring them back up.

[Fm7] Science Magazine looks at a book on infants and how they modernized America by way of their actually surviving and becoming a more per tangible fixture in our lives.

[Fm8] Bethany Mandel writes about the oversharing parent problem. I figure I’m safe as long as I have a pseudonym. If nothing else, it will prevent them from telling their friends my secret identity!

[Fm9] There is something truly fascinating about our “from the mouths of babes” fixation. Ed West explains best why it’s so misguided.

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Morning Ed: Crime {2017.11.29.W}( 73 )

Morning Ed: Crime {2017.11.29.W}

Image by LoopZilla Morning Ed: Crime {2017.11.29.W}

[Cr1] How to escape a Siberian prison.

[Cr2] It’s worth pointing out that they didn’t just use “her digital life” to harass her, but also the state.

[Cr3] When both sides of a drug deal are undercover cops trying to bust the other, fists will fly.

[Cr4] How people remember murders they didn’t commit. Also, the history of skeleton confessors.

[Cr5] Elizabeth Bruenig writes on forgiveness of the wicked, in the context of recent sexual assault and harassment scandals.

[Cr6] Brilliant! It’s honestly reminiscent of police using the potential of sexting ruining someone’s life to ruin someone’s life over sexting.

[Cr7] What if, instead of being anti-social, the violence is our society?

[Cr8] How British libel laws are preventing sexual harassment cases from being pursued.

[Cr9] This is a really disturbing story in several ways.

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Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics( 257 )


Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics

via Pixabay

[R1] Amy Wax writes of he joylessness of hookup sex.

[R2] A look at the history of the single vote. The connection to “woke” is tenuous, but the “Wide Awakes” name cracked me up.

[R3] Elizabeth Bruenig looks to a new sexual ethic. I really like her thinking in that the ethics of puritanism and the ethics of consent have both, in and of themselves, failed us.

[R4] Millennials are conducting their relationships differently… and pretty much exactly in the ways you would expect for good or for ill.

[R5] Universities offering courses on dating actually sound like an interesting idea, though the reasons for doing so in Korea are disconcerting.

[R6] If you are going to consider cohabitation these seems like pretty good questions to ask even if you don’t have any philosophical objections or resistance.


partisan media photo

Image by sfmission.com Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics

[Po1] I’m not sorry to see this, to be honest.

[Po2] Nationalist populism finally hits Germany, putting Merkel in a pickle.

[Po3] If anything should be public domain, the laws we live under should be.

[Po4] The Rise of the Robots section of Hillary Clinton’s book was one of the more interesting parts. She’s still at it. Now that she is (I believe) out of the political game, she should spend more time talking about the things she wanted to talk about because it seemed wrong for a politician to be talking about them.

[Po5] An oldie but goodie on how The West Wing is warping foreign perceptions of American products. Maybe Trump destroyed that?

[Po6] On the Internet, can anyone tell you’re a bot?

[Po7] A look at the neuroscience behind political stubbornness.


Fox News photo

Image by mariopiperni Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics

[Me1] Even apart from the sexual harassment allegations, Eve Fairbanks says that Mark Halperin’s influence on modern political media has been devastating.

[Me2] I swear 2016 and 2017 is being written by hack screenwriters. While I think the award was excessive, and while they are enjoying a bit of a renewed appreciation, I still don’t lament Gawker’s passing.

[Me3] This was bound to happen at some point: An ousted reporter is suing back.

[Me4] A few years ago Gabriel Rossman wrote about the niche partitioning of media and how economics of scale don’t apply to media.

[Me5] As Twitter has revealed over and over again, when newspeople are free to speak their minds, they say everything they thought they had been taking pains to conceal.

[Me6] Step 1: Vox Unionizes.
Step 2: Stike!
Step 3: Conservative scabs walk through the picket line.
Step 4: Vox is a conservative media organization now.

[Me7] Well this didn’t work out as well as intended.


black friday photo

Image by Neon Tommy Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics

[Bu1] Karl Smith explains how Walmart is becoming another specialty retailer.

[Bu2] Do you believe in magic? UK water companies do!

[Bu3] DRM was, perhaps, doomed from the very beginning.

[Bu4] What cities are doing to win Amazon over. The biggest innovator? Fresno!

[Bu5] Is Black Friday dead? Or has it been shifted to Thursday? I was at Walmart on Thanksgiving night because I needed some melatonin and a toothbrush and there were about 10,000 people. I have a proposal: How about instead of everybody shopping on Thursday, we start the sales on Friday instead?

[Bu6] The beautiful chaos of the bike-rental business in Europe.



Taco Bell photo

Image by JeepersMedia Linky Tuesday: Love & Politics

[Fo1] A look at the potential environmental benefits of deep fat frying!

[Fo2] Taco Bell always one step ahead of society.

[Fo3] Rethinking fishery policy by looking at effort instead of haul.

[Fo4] The Curse of Jared? What’s happened to Subway?

[Fo5] I’m game, but I think we’ve probably gotten all we’re going to get from food labeling (which turns out to be next to nothing). This might have some possibilities, though can’t really be forced.

[Fo6] The weird thing isn’t the apparent fraud, but how out-and-out lazy some of the apparent fraud appears to be.

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Morning Ed: The Planet {2017.11.27.M}( 32 )

[Pl1] A new report on the refugee crisis that climate change potentially represents.

[Pl2] A look at the importance of Panama, millions of years ago.

[Pl3] Pittsburgh is spending a lot of money on trash cans.

[Pl4] Among other things, this article really doesn’t understand the relationship between people and Earth.

[Pl5] Some plants appear to handle climate change better than others.

[Pl6] Is it time to pull up our stakes and move inland? What global warming doesn’t accomplish, maybe a volcano will.

[Pl7] Floating villages, flood parks, highway tunnes, and other ways to adapt San Francisco to climate change.

[Pl8] With the Keystone Pipeline having laid a giant dump in South Dakota, some people are asking whether this is worse than other means of transport. The answer is that it depends on how you measure. Pipeline incidents are always the worst, but they are less frequent. Overall, trucks are the worst and pipelines are slightly less bad than rail when it comes to spillage but slightly better than rail when it comes to human casualties.

[Pl9] The IEA is ever-skeptical of solar’s growth, over and over and over again.

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Morning Ed: Violence {2017.11.24.Fr}( 11 )

[Vi1] A look at Genghis Khan’s spy network.

[Vi2] The dark history of the engineering of the VX Nerve Agent.

[Vi3] Civil War: The Battle of San Diego.

[Vi4] Do the armed forces need to get modern and ditch officer wife school? Not quite the same, but I’m in favor of all the home ec tutoring we can manage for anyone, wherever we can manage it.

[Vi5] Violence against tribeswomen is a huge problem. My sister-in-law is acting as an adjudicator for cases in Alaska, where the problem is less missing women and more sexually abused girls and women. It’s… a mess.

[Vi6] Ari Schulman argues that one of the best ways we may be able to prevent mass shootings is changing the way we cover them.

[Vi7] Slavery is making a comeback in Libya.

[Vi8] Colin Dickey has a writeup on a book involving The Great Cat and Dog Massacre of World War II, which it turns out may have been largely unnecessary.

[Vi9] Atomic bomb survivors draw Ground Zero in 1945.

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Tech Tuesday 11/21( 19 )


AERO1 – More images of Jupiter from Juno, because I just love looking at that massive display of Schlieren Photography and Qualitative Flow Visualization.

AERO2 – The Dream Chaser has done a successful drop landing (carried aloft by heavy lift helicopter, then dropped and successfully landed on a runway).  If you watch the video, you’ll notice the front landing gear is a skid pad, and you can see the handful of protective tiles at the tip of the skid vaporizing upon touchdown.

AERO3 – Oh man, dinosaurs, way to roll a 1 on your saving throw versus Death.

AERO4 – Highly flexible wings are being tested on a drone in order to come up with better wing designs for long range aircraft, since flexible wings will be able to adapt to changing aerodynamic conditions and improve fuel efficiency and over all aircraft performance.  However, highly flexible wings are very susceptible to flutter.  Flutter is high amplitude wing vibration that is at or very near a resonance frequency for a wing.  Flutter is hell on modern commercial aircraft because it can tear wings apart if it isn’t damped out.  The more flexible a wing is, the more resonance frequencies it will have, and the more likely it will be to experience flutter, so it is very important to have control technologies that will be able to damp out those vibrations.

AERO5 – Now that we’ve successfully detected gravitational waves, and we know what to look for, we can start looking at celestial objects to find gravitational waves our instruments are not yet sensitive enough to detect.

AERO6 – You ever get hired for a job, and before you’ve even finished filling out the HR forms and figured out where the coffee machine is, you’ve got work sitting on your desk.  It’s like that, but for a Space Observatory.

AERO7 – In real estate, it’s all about Location, Location, Location, but man, Temperature, Temperature, Temperature is pretty important as well.


BIO1 – Hey, living in space can be stressful, but seedlings are learning to cope.  Which, you know, is a good thing if we ever hope to live out there without relying on Earth for every bit of fresh food.

BIO2 – A gene therapy to cure blindness!  Who saw that coming? (you may groan, loudly, I won’t be offended)

BIO3 – The important bit is that they are stable.  A kill switch is no good if it can be evolved away from.

BIO4 – Red Wine and Chocolate contain the stuff of long life!

BIO5 – So what they are saying is that transcription errors are not a given.


EE1This is so simple it’s genius.  Sure, you need a seabed with a thick layer of silt/sand/mud on top of the bedrock, but aside from that..

EE2 – This one is a lot more complicated, but I like the concrete and the non-steel construction technique, which makes me wonder if the buckets from EE1 could be made of this formulation, rather than steel?

EE3 – One would have to be a fool to think that Geo-Engineering our way out of climate change was without risks.  And at the very least, it’s an all or nothing kind of deal, you most certainly can’t expect to cool one part of the planet without messing things up somewhere else.


MAT1 – While we still can’t quite get artificial silk right, we can, it seems, recycle silk into some pretty useful stuff.  So, that old silk shirt with the stain that will never come out might be quite valuable.

MAT2 – A little bit of charred wood, sunlight, and you got a water filter!


PHYS1 – That particle that everyone thought was Dark Matter?  Nope.  Back to the whiteboard.

PHYS2Very cool, but currently utterly useless, except as a way to annoy that guy on his cellphone (so far).


TECH1 – Yes, that robot just did a backflip.  It’s already in talks with Cirque de Soliel.

TECH2 – Skynet is following this advance with great interest…

TECH3 – Pew! Pew! Pew!

TECH4Automotive HUDs are one of those things whose development has seemed, to me, to be ridiculously slow.  This has always struck me as one of those things the insurance industry would be pushing hard for automakers to develop and install, since it would help keep eyes on the road.  I’ve been waiting for these since I saw Runaway in 1986!

TECH5 – A hardware neural network may be at hand.

TECH6 – Perovskites might be the secret to creating Organic Laser Diodes.


TRANS1 – I think the idea of an electric highway is neat, and there is a certain cross-functional harmony of electrical infrastructure to it, but man I just loathe the look of pantograph wires.  I get it, it’s way easier and cheaper to suspend wires above an existing road than it is to embed something in or below the road, but they are just ugly!

TRANS2 – Speaking of trucks, there is now a retrofit device to improve the aerodynamics of trucking by reducing or eliminating the drag that happens when high speed air slips behind the truck cab and gets caught between it and the trailer.  The trick is, of course, that the system has to be able to get out of the way at slow speeds so the truck can make sharp turns, which means it must fail to the retracted position.  Also not sure how well this would work on refrigerated trucks, since the refrigeration unit would both get in the way, and is probably very dependent on the airflow behind the cab.

TRANS3 – And finally, Tesla is touting their electric long haul rig.

TRANS4 – A bubble shroud is an idea that has been floating around for a long time, but AFAIK no one has every successfully deployed one on an actual vessel.

TRANS5 – Waymo (Alphabet, Google, etc.) is letting it’s cars do their own thing.


Wacky, Weird, and Wonderful

WWW1 – KFC is offering a personal, inflatable, Faraday cage with the Colonels warm, finger licking embrace.

WWW2 – What to do with plastic waste in your city?  Recycle it into 3D print plastic and print out some durable city benches.

WWW3 – Didn’t IKEA try this some time ago?

WWW4 – Asgardia has put the first bit of itself into space.  Obviously, part of me wants this to be in Aerospace, but I truly think it belongs here.

Image by NASA on The Commons

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Morning Ed: Education {2017.11.20.Mo}( 46 )

[Ed1] So where are all these STEM graduates going to work? I’ve always considered the non-vocational majors to be somewhat dicey, but it’s surprising to see engineers there. That said, jobs outside their fields are still jobs just as jobs that don’t require a degree are still jobs. Which means that on the social level we may be too invested in STEM (unless we believe in the knowledge for its own sake, as some do with college generally) though individually it may be the right course more often than not.

[Ed2] While many universities are seeking an ever-increasing specialization in paths of study, St John’s College in Annapolis and Santa Fe are going a different route.

[Ed3] David Nakamura shares his experience teaching at a Japanese high school, and how he got different lessons than the ones he was looking for.

[Ed4] Peter Human argues that Britain needs an education revolution.

[Ed5] Grad school academic blues… not just for liberal arts graduates.

[Ed6] Most excellent! This is a stigma that, as women go to college in greater numbers, has become quite counterproductive.

[Ed7] Michael Strain argues against taxing university endowments. The endowment is one of the things my university has going for it, so I look on with skepticism.

[Ed8] What do you do when it turns out your college is a con? Within this article is the important thing that these colleges succeeded in part because they were delivering stuff people wanted that regular colleges weren’t (and I don’t mean the phony degrees).

[Ed9] Jennifer Bershire asks Gordon Lafer how and why corporations are undermining public education.

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Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs( 58 )


red vs blue photo

Image by Masked Builder Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

[Po1] Walter Olson makes the libertarian case against gerrymandering.

[Po2] A look at politics and personality in the UK.

[Po3] Undermining the FDA? Where do I sign? Also, an interesting look at the history of the FDA.

[Po4] I am increasingly convinced that this is true. It’s been confirmed at least on one side of the aisle, but if we’re honest it’s true of the other side as well as those on the fence, in aggregate. This is also an argument for strong parties with good party elites. {Related?}

[Po5] This may evolve into the most important offshoot of #MeToo. And we’re off!


Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

Image by ricketyus Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

[Me1] The rise and fall of Playgirl.

[Me2] The Chinese, evidently, are comfortable with their media and its limitations.

[Me3] Katherine Goldstein argues that news organizations need to do a better job of accommodating mothers.

[Me4] The strange story of an internet media commentator with a penchant for harassing women who turned out to be a teen girl.

[Me5] When tallying the dead, how do you count fetuses?

[Me6] Contrary to conservative complaints, the media hasn’t really buried the Menendez story. MSNBC, though… (and their excuse sucks)

[Me7] The Wall Street Journal reports that Buzzfeed, Mashable, and Vice are all missing their financial targets.


playgirl photo

Image by Jazmin Million Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

[Re1] Jemar Tisby was a rising star in the white evangelical community in Mississippi, but he has become disillusioned.

[Re2] A video on what happens when ex-Muslims go public.

[Re3] As someone that’s not especially religious (or “spiritual” in the normal sense) but who believes in believing in god, I often look interestedly at the community of church.

[Re4] EdWeek has an article on how to teach religion in schools, without blowing everything up.

[Re5] Hal Boyd argues that it’s to mock the Mormon beliefs is to mock the things about Mormons we often profess to admire.


sperm photo

Image by Grace Hebert Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

[Sc1] What a Star Wars spoof revealed about sperm penetration.

[Sc2] According to Razib Khan, the fierceness of the blowback against social psychology is due to pent up demand. Think of it like finally getting to pee after holding it in forever. More, from Andrew Gelman.

[Sc3] Scientific disagreements ending in lawsuits is likely to be a problem for the climate sciences in general.

[Sc4] Asymmetrical scrutiny is an ever-present concern with science, and it’s hard to find a better example than this.

[Sc5] A look at turning heat into motion using magnets.


red vs blue photo

Image by cuatrok77 Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

[Sp1] When is a giant world not a planet?

[Sp2] Chris Russell looks at what we can learn by going back to the moon.

[Sp3] Studying the plumes of Enceladus.

[Sp4] I’m just glad this didn’t happen those few months when everybody was telling everybody else they had to see Crash. What if China meets the aliens first? We’re already sending stuff out.

[Sp5] If there are aliens out there, they may be a lot like us.

[Sp6] A big new advance for terraforming Mars? Now, if ewe can just get a comet full of water to collide with it.Image by cuatrok77 Linky Friday: (Un)earthly Affairs

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Morning Ed: Geopolitics {2017.11.16}( 19 )

[Gp1] A look at Germany’s relationship with its military and the dilemmas that presents.

[Gp2] Rachel VanLandingham is unhappy with how the Bowe Bergdahl case turned out.

[Gp3] The British Royal Navy isn’t growing, apparently.

[Gp4] Lordy have mercy that terrorism insurance is a thing for musicians.

[Gp5] Here’s a look at some of the complexities of the Catalonia situation.

[Gp6] A look at Genghis Khan’s spy network.

[Gp7] Could Saudi Arabia be taking a more moderate course?

[Gp87] All is not well at the Wall Street Journal’s editorial board.

[Gp9] Good work, Buzzfeed.


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Morning Ed: Health {2017.20.15.W}( 14 )

[He1] Between pagers and fax machines, hospitals don’t just keep patients alive but technologies.

[He2] Some might say that vaping is safe, but living 86,000,000 years would drive any sane man mad.

[He3] Smoking may kill you, but so may being told to stop smoking.

[He4] The New York Magazine has an interesting look at doulas.

[He5] I was all prepared to share in the outrage of this story, but these are actually important things and even if it means she has to charge more she needs to hire somebody to do them.

[He6] Brink Lindsey and Steven Teles argue that medical licensing is propping up health care prices. They are, but not in all ways that people suspect and it’s less clear cut than people think. I am skeptical that there are a whole lot of savings to be made by increasing the number of doctors (quite the opposite, possibly), but allowing non-physician to do more might. I recently paid $250 for a doctor to confirm that I had wax in my ears and a nurse to squirt fluid in there to get it out.

[He7] One area where we are not apparently likely to see savings is by allowing doctors to conduct business through emails. But maybe if we built less.

[He8] I don’t think we’re going to end up with single payer, but this is how we end up with single payer.

[He9] America’s worse opioid crisis of the 20th century.

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Morning Ed: SciFi {2017.11.14.T}( 19 )

[SF1] Superhero origin story.

[SF2] Babblefish made real. This is a lot more important a development than a lot of things we consider to be important developments.

[SF3] USA! USA! Take that, Japan.

[SF4] This is how we lose everything. This was actually the plot of the Westworld movie (but not the TV show). The robots designed the robots, and so when they went berzerk nobody knew what to do because they were so removed from the process.

[SF5] But what happens if you go through the void? Alternate universes? Please tell me alternate universes.

[SF6] This will end in no tears.

[SF7] I can imagine a few ways this might go wrong.

[SF8] William Bradley tries to come to terms with the fact that Frank Miller’s politics are not to his liking and trying to like his work anyway. Must be hard.

[SF9] Either that or the programmers did a really, really good job.

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Morning Ed: World {2017.11.13.M}( 51 )

[Wo1] Salena Zito and Chris Arnande journalism, German Edition. Meanwhile, in Poland

[Wo2] Nation-states may be pretty bad, but they’re still the best workable thing we’ve got.

[Wo3] This is an interesting story, but who the hell names a boat the HMS Terror?

[Wo4] No longer satisfied with constantly ripping on Canada, Jacobin is now taking aim at Japan.

[Wo5] Vandals… or heroes? Seriously, regardless of which system you prefer, you want uniformity that this is messing with.

[Wo6] Hadn’t thought about this, but it makes sense: Stereotypes about only-child kids are being tested society-wide in China.

[Wo7] I staunchly believe this did not happen.

[Wo8] I love the idea of a passenger mutiny on a cruise ship and I don’t know why.

[Wo9] I’m honestly surprised that it’s only 20%.

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Linky Friday: Crime & Sustenance( 126 )


[Cr1] Like flesh-eating bacteria, brain-eating fungus will always sound like something scifi/horror to me.

[Cr2] You’d think if anyone would know what donut crumbs look like…

[Cr3] Tage Rai wants us to stop acting like mental illness causes mass shootings, on the basis that it’s unfair to the mentally ill.

[Cr4] In addition to being terrible, this story seems odd. What did she think would happen once he got out? I guess that he’d be too ashamed to say anything, or that nobody would believe him. And this one is less severe but way weirder.

[Cr5] This stands to reason, given that most people in the Witness Protection Program are themselves criminals.

[Cr6] A look at murders they didn’t commit. Also, the history of skeleton confessors.”>tobacco smuggling by state, and the implications of cigarette taxation.


[Tr1] Bill Wirtz makes the case for rail privatization (for Europe).

[Tr2] This is going to be pretty great. I’ll be able to see the light change from the corner of my eyes that are glued to my smartphone.

[Tr3] It’s hard to overstate what an astoundingly terrible idea this is.

[Tr4] #BanCars. The argument makes sense, but good luck with that.

[Tr5] A look at ridesharing and why people can’t have nice things.

[Tr6] How insurance companies are charging minority neighborhoods more, despite similar risk profiles. The best explanation for this I’ve heard so far is that they target places where people do the least amount of comparison shopping. So a solution could be to add more transparency to that process. Auto insurance exchanges?


Linky Friday: Crime & Sustenance

Image by JeepersMedia Linky Friday: Crime & Sustenance

[Fo1] It’s Popeye’s. I’m not sure what they’re complaining about?

[Fo2] Maybe Bill O’Reilly’s next book can be called Killing Applebees, which has the added benefit of letting him attack millennials.

[Fo3] The quick rise of pumpkin spice has been something to behold, though I remember the same thing with chipotle peppers going from something I’d never heard of to something on everything this side of ice cream.

[Fo4] This is how Macron loses to LePen in four years.

[Fo5] It is to our eternal shame that this wasn’t invented in the USA.

[Fo6] Gustavo Arellano writes of the death of the Nacho King, and what his life and timesmeans about cultural appropriation and food. I am skeptical of a lot of cultural appropriation, but especially when it comes to food.


[Mo1] Jon Evans declares the startup era to be at an end.

[Mo2] It’s amazing how those nefarious schemers in the tobacco industry could ever have come up with such sneaky sales tactics as lower prices to increase sales.

[Mo3] Maybe conspicuous consumption deserves to be defended.

[Mo4] I feel about rent-to-own companies the way a lot of people feel about payday lenders. The existence of such a thing and how it has been implemented represents a failure of… something.

[Mo5] Mining jobs are dangerous, dirty, and underpaid. Worse yet, they may be going away.

[Mo6] I don’t expect China to overtake us any time soon, but if this is any indication of Chinese ingenuity, maybe I’m wrong.


geothermal power photo

Image by ThinkGeoEnergy Linky Friday: Crime & Sustenance

[En1] A look at tidal power in Scotland.

[En2] This is important: Universal energy access possible by 2030.

[En3] Germany is having some real difficulty meeting its climate goals. Meanwhile, optimism in France.

[En4] Geothermal in Nevada!

[En5] Drill, Baby, Drill, because climate change mitigation won’t pay for itself.

[En6] A look at the psychology of onshore wind power. As someone who prefers Works of Man over Works of God, this is really lost on me. Wind farms are beautiful.

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Morning Ed: Media {2017.11.09.Th}( 105 )

[Me1] Apparently InfoWars does not property respect Russian intellectual property.

[Me2] Ask a Mexican was a pretty interesting feature – that I was introduced to on the Unz Report, of all places – and I’m sorry to see it go. {More}

[Me3] The Rand Paul attack does look vaguely suspicious, but the response to it from some quarters has been quite odd.

[Me4] I’m not sure how much responsibility to assign to Facebook and Twitter for their media workings, but this doesn’t look great for Twitter. Though when we ask (or demand) that Facebook and the like do something about “fake news” we should be careful what we wish for.

[Me5] Conservative media bias may be expanding to television sets near you. Unlike Fox News, and like the broadcast network news programs, they carry more of a veneer of neutrality and therefore could be especially effective.

[Me6] Some of Russian propaganda efforts in the US look to me like they were just having fun and seeing what stuck rather than thoughtful provocation. Relatedly, what Tucker Carlson and Fox News is doing defies charitable explanation and when and if we ever get to the other side of this thing Carlson should not be able to shrug it off as roleplaying.

[Me7] Twitter keeps finding new and inventive ways of discrediting the media. For consumers on Twitter, it’s veils slipping. For consumers off media, it’s things like this and media focus on Twitter.

[Me8] With Teen Vogue and a couple alt-weeklies, I wonder if the lack of a print edition leaves the web edition without a rationale. Teen Vogue has the whole Social Justice thing going for it now, but that has only gotten the attention it has due to the counterintuitive fact it came from a teen media outlet.

[Me9] If you’re in media, unionizing can be dangerous business. I don’t have a problem with him pulling up his stakes, but shutting it down immediately was just an ass move.

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Morning Ed: Labor {2017.11.08.W}( 71 )

[La1] Bank of America is concerned with Chipotle paying its employees so well.

[La2] Sometimes you’ve got to fire your top talent. {More}

[La3] Fifteen jobs that are allegedly safe from automation.

[La4] So not only are robots a threat to replace retail and superstore workers, now they’re going to start going around, aisle to aisle, and checking their work.

[La5] Ack! Noooooooooooooo! Trying to teach them to code is actually a pretty terrible idea, but the fact that they’re eschewing natural gas work is really troublesome.

[La6] This is a pretty interesting study testing with sensors how we respond to men and women at work.

[La7] To be honest, it’s really hard for a marriage to have two careers, instead of one career and one job. What we really need is to lose the assumption that the man gets the career and the woman gets the job without a compelling reason otherwise.

[La8] This is not surprising. Some rise to the occasion, but stress makes worse people of most of us.

[La9] Good news! Our paychecks are getting larger after all!

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Tech Tuesday 11/7/17 – Hulk Edition( 91 )


Aero1 – Last pics of Saturn’s rings before the plunge.

Aero2 – The new Hall thruster is setting all kinds of records!  To be fair, this is still pretty new tech, so beating records isn’t as hard as, say, squeaking out a fraction of a percentage more performance out of a turbofan, or something else we’ve been messing with for a hundred years or more, but still.

Aero3 – I just have a strange, call it romantic, fascination with airships.  Riding on one is most definitely on my bucket list.

Aero4 – NASA is looking at how Lobster’s look at you, right before you drop them in the boiling pot and start looking for the butter…


Arch1 – In some ways, it has to be an exciting time to be an architect, what with advances in materials and construction techniques.

Arch2 – Because why should we limit architecture to just Earth.


Bio1 – Another super vaccine (last time it was for the Flu).

Bio2 – Taking a closer look at how lungs work in micro/zero gravity.  Well, yes, we know they ‘work’, but will they keep working long term, or will they need help along the way.  This would all be so much easier if we would just hurry up and develop artificial gravity (the techno-whizz-bang kind, not the spin the ship kind).

Bio3 – I don’t know if we will ever beat dying of old age, but anything that can make getting old suck less is a good step in my book.

Bio4 – Hey, look, the Lenksi experiment is in the news.

Bio5Gut bacteria have their tiny little flagella into everything in our bodies.

Bio6 – Brain scans can identify suicidal people.  Yeah, can’t imagine how that could go wrong…

Bio7 – Sometimes I really wonder what the hell is wrong with headline writers.

Bio8 – Wasn’t this the plot of a Spider-Man movie?


Enrg1 – Sandia is using fractal patterns to improve solar efficiency.  I’m surprised we haven’t seen a lot more with regard to fractals and solar power.

Enrg2 – Another day, another story about making better batteries.

Enrg3 – Looking at giant clams to figure out how to scale algae bio-fuel production.


Env1 – As I’ve said before, models are tricky things.  If you have bad assumptions, or bad data, your model will produce bad results.  PS If this turns out to be true (it’s only one study), it does not bode well for climate change.

Env2 – Another bit on vertical farming with pink LEDs.  I like how they are exploring how much they can flicker the LEDs to maximize growth and energy savings.  Speaking of pink light...


Mat1 – Wait a minute, are you telling me that if you irradiate plastic with gamma radiation, it can make concrete stronger?  Does it turn green too?  Or make the concrete green?  No, you can’t claim that grey concrete is proof just because there was a grey hulk, we gotta start at green.

Mat2 – Graphene and silver make for bendy touch screens.

Mat3 – To make glass not shiny, make it not smooth.  Yes, there is an element of “Duh!” in this, but the approach taken is novel, and leaves the glass transparent enough to see through.


Phys1 – Cambridge is putting Dr. Hawking’s PhD thesis online under Creative Commons.  I heard a rumor the demand was so great when it posted it crashed the server.

Phys2Attoboy!  That is a quick laser pulse, I must admit.

Phys3 – Using superfluid helium to detect dark matter.  Superfluid helium is strange stuff, so I wouldn’t bet against this.


Tech1 – Remember MH370? What if we could have drastically narrowed down the search radius by listening?  New tech is using hydrophones to find ocean impacts anywhere in the world.  With video.

Tech2 – Nissan rolls out it’s first fully autonomous auto.  I can see a few obvious sensors, but otherwise it’s unremarkable.

Tech3 – Now that’s a good idea.  It’s about time the design moved away from “something cobbled together in college shop” and onto, “this is how to do it right”.

Tech4 – For entry, buzz my finger!  No, it’s not a fart joke!  How old do you think I am, 12?  Wait, no, don’t answer that…

Tech5 – A handheld infrared spectroscopy device that will allow people living in marginal areas to test for all kinds of food and water contami… wait, no, it’s for cops to use to test for drugs… sigh.  I suppose it has to be sold to someone who has money to spend, and on the bright side, it will hopefully cut down on the number of confectioners and herbalists getting arrested for having powdered sugar or oregano in their cars.

Tech6 – On the brighter side, Bill and Melinda are at least trying to help third world populations with sanitation projects.

Tech7 – This strikes me as a place where some machine learning will go a very long way.

Wacky, Weird, and Wonderful

WWW1 – Saudi Arabia is planning it’s own version of Dubai.

WWW2 – Sinking a ship to help for a coral reef is old hat.  Attaching a giant octopus sculpture to the ship so that it looks like something out of Captain Nemo’s nightmares not only creates a nifty place for coral to grow and divers to explore, it will most surely confuse the hell out of alien archaeologists as the explore the ruins of our civilization.

WWW3 – A kombi I can dig.

Image by Trev Grant Tech Tuesday 11/7/17 - Hulk Edition

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Morning Ed: Education {2017.11.06.M}( 58 )

[Ed1] The cost of free college is absorbed by the poor, says a new paper. This is a complaint about merit-based scholarships, but I hadn’t heard it applied to free college before.

[Ed2] Budget cuts at the state and particularly federal level are putting a strain on top-tier midwestern universities.

[Ed3] Quality control for substitute teachers is tough, but the two day suspension is pretty damning.

[Ed4] Schools are apparently being targeted for ransomware attacks.

[Ed5] I’ve come around to the belief that technology in the classroom will ultimately be to education’s benefit, but also that I would be more comfortable if it were mostly a non-profit venture. (There are no shortage of billionaires with a lot of interest in this stuff.)

[Ed6] I’m pretty sure I saw this episode of Every Family Sitcom Ever.

[Ed7] Toby Young wrote a piece on the limits of what schools can do, which became the subject of some controversy when it was pulled by the organization that commissioned it as part of a “diversity of perspectives” effort. There are no Free Speech implications here in any real sense, but I do think Teach First should not have pulled it.

[Ed8] A look at outcomes and efficacy of Amerindian boarding schools.

[Ed9] Here’s a look at the efficacy of admissions test prep (PDF). Charles Murray wants to do away with the SAT entirely and replace them with achievement tests.

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Linky Friday: Housing the World( 216 )


immigration photo

Image by krebsmaus07 Linky Friday: Housing the World

[Im1] Sam Bowman makes the case for arguing about immigration. Arguing with people who disagree with you on immigration is probably better than blithely dismissing them.

[Im2] Borders between countries and walls between families.

[Im3] Television has a tendency to portray Latino immigrants as criminals.

[Im4] As we look at what happened in New York and reconsider the Diversity Visa program, here is a look at another beneficiary of the program who stopped a terrorist attack.

[Im5] I’m not sure I can think of a more efficient way to breed anti-immigration resentment.

[Im6] Speaking of immigration and housing, the new New Zealand government is coming down hard against foreigners who want to buy existing houses. Some perspective from someone who immigrated to New Zealand.


Gavin Newsome photo

Image by torbakhopper Linky Friday: Housing the World

[Ho1] Houses are getting bigger, but yards are getting smaller. That seems likely better than the other way around.

[Ho2] Pete Saunders writes of the limits of Build Baby Build.

[Ho3] Gavin Newsom has some ideas to alleviate housing costs in California and they’re not all bad! And maybe not a moment too soon.

[Ho4] Rhiannon Bury argues they can mitigate London’s housing shortage by building over railways. A quarter of a million homes!

[Ho5] Though often cited as a positive example, it turns out maybe rent control hasn’t worked in Germany, either.


haumea photo

Image by Kevin M. Gill Linky Friday: Housing the World

[Sp1] Dwarf planet Haumea – the oddly shaped onehas a ring.

[Sp2] NASA has a plutonium problem, but it’s working on it.

[Sp3] The mystery of the neutron star collision… solved?

[Sp4] I’ve lost track of whether or not we think Planet Nine exists, but NASA just sent out an indication of yes?

[Sp5] New tools to find habitable worlds?

[Sp6] We were a mistake. All of us. Everything.

[Sp7] The Pope chatted with some astronauts.


[Hc1] Bob Tedeschi looks at how doctors handle patient bigotry.

[Hc2] There may be a new way to straighten teach, and Orthodontists are trying to put a stop to it.

[Hc3] Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry explains how a ton of our healthcare spending is being wasted.

[Hc4] This is really exciting! Dyslexia is one of those we don’t even know how common it really is, in part because we don’t know how it works. I’d always assumed it was strictly a brain thing.

[Hc5] Kumar Yogesh wants to unload medical records onto the patient.

Sex Crimes:

mental illness photo

Image by JenXer Linky Friday: Housing the World

[SC1] Ew.

[SC2] Here’s an interview with one of Kevin Spacey’s victims. And rumors from two years ago. Russell/Daniel has some things to say about a Slate article trying to minimize what Spacey did.

[SC3] In addition to being generally “crimes against women” should we actually think of sexual assault more as crimes against the young (PDF)?

[SC4] From Sam: Diana Moskovitz’s evisceration of the disbelief women endure in media is worth stopping everything to read. {Related}

[SC5] What… what precisely does Bernard Godard think rape is?

[SC6] Megan’s law is going global.

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Morning Ed: Mindspace {2017.11.02.Th}( 37 )

[Mi1] Our own Rufus F wrote a piece for the Partially Examined life on Louis CK, Schopenhauer and suffering.

[Mi2] What mental illness looks like.

[Mi3] Marilyn Monroe recounts when she went to the psych ward.

[Mi4] When I was a young, I was big into the idea of stoicism. I found that while I needed to do a better job of keeping myself in check, I just wasn’t meant for it.

[Mi5] Mark Humphries on the limitations of neurons.

[Mi6] There are, apparently, four kinds of introversion.

[Mi7] Scientific proof that we really do hate Mondays.

[Mi8] Tim Harford looks at the wastefulness of wishful thinking.

[Mi9] If you walk a mile in someone’s shoes, you will… become judgmental as hell.

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Morning Ed: Sports {2017.11.01.W}( 19 )

[Sp1] The World Series is an odd time to start experimenting with new baseballs.

[Sp2] Should baseball be doing more to protect fans?

[Sp3] I may have linked to this one before, but a look at the dark fate of Donnie Moore, and how it wasn’t just The Pitch that sent him over.

[Sp4] Stephen Beale wants to get the politics out of football.

[Sp5] Brett McMurphy writes about the decision-making process in college football when it comes to whether or not to fire a coach. Georgia took some grief for firing Richt, but that really turned out to be the best thing for Georgia, Richt, and Miami.

[Sp6] How a frustrated would-be writer took down Ole Miss’s breakout football program.

[Sp7] Robert Greene II reviews a book on stadiums and American sports culture.

[Sp8] I’m slowly becoming convinced that soccer has indeed made it.

[Sp9] Here’s another story on slowing participation in youth football. If football is going to be displaced, I hope lacrosse shoves its way ahead in line so its not replaced by football.

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Morning Ed: Society {2017.10.31.Tu}( 63 )

[So1] I knew it!

[So2] Introducing the Japanese Halloween Trains. {More}

[So3] Dan Wang looks at the Girardian politics of Game of Thrones. Even though it’s on a different subject (ingroup/outgroup), it actually complements or is complemented by Scott Alexander’s ingroup/outgroup and togas/party/class pieces.

[So4] This is actually good news for people opting out of cable. While I still think there are savings either way, there’s no doubt in my mind that cable providers are helping keep streaming substitutes as cheap as they are.

[So5] Internet sleuths are good, but not necessarily good enough to find a guy who doesn’t exist.

[So6] I haven’t seen some of these, agree that others are messed up, but on the whole I thought Fat Daphne was a pretty clever response to the actress getting pregnant.

[So7] VICE goes to a gathering of dummies.

[So8] I always assumed that comics would say “Continued after the next page” because back then the medium was newer and you had to explain things more, but it turns out it was related to the genesis of advertising in comic books.

[So9] Sure, just give cancer patients another obligation.


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