Archive | Ideas

How to Do a Data ‘Cleanse’

from NYTs If we need a checkup on our health, our finances or our cars, we can find doctors, accountants or mechanics. But who checks up on our digital lives? There’s no such thing as 10,000-mile scheduled maintenance for your hard drive or an oil change for your smartphone. You’re on your own. Some people […]

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Where Did The Moon Come From? A New Theory

from TED The Earth and Moon are like identical twins, made up of the exact same materials — which is really strange, since no other celestial bodies we know of share this kind of chemical relationship. What’s responsible for this special connection? Looking for an answer, planetary scientist and MacArthur “Genius” Sarah T. Stewart discovered […]

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Stamps Featuring Drawings by Leonardo da Vinci

from kottke The Royal Mail in the UK have released a set of stamps that feature drawings done by Leonardo da Vinci. The Royal Collection holds the greatest collection of Leonardo’s drawings in existence, housed in the Print Room at Windsor Castle. Because they have been protected from light, fire and flood, they are in […]

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No, Data Is Not The New Oil

from Wired “Data is the new oil” is one of those deceptively simple mantras for the modern world. Whether in The New York Times, The Economist, or WIRED, the wildcatting nature of oil exploration, plus the extractive exploitation of a trapped asset, seems like an apt metaphor for the boom in monetized data. The metaphor […]

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On Feeling Incompetent

from Seth’s Blog At some point, grown ups get tired of the feeling that accompanies growth and learning. We start calling that feeling, “incompetence.” We’re not good at the new software, we resist a brainstorming session for a new way to solve a problem, we never did bother to learn to juggle… Not because we […]

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Mapping the Odyssey Isn’t Easy

from kottke We’ve looked before at maps of Odysseus’s travels in The Odyssey (as Jason wrote in 2018, “that dude was LOST”). But it turns out — and maybe this shouldn’t be surprising — that it’s not easy to figure out exactly where Odysseus was in the Mediterranean Sea for all that time. Scholars have […]

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The Battle For Silicon Valley’s Soul

from The New Republic Last year, as Big Tech drew comparisons to Big Tobacco, and the industry’s CEOs were hauled before Congress to explain why government propaganda and harassment had been allowed to continue unchecked on their platforms, Silicon Valley searched its conscience. At Google, employees urged the company to stop facilitating Chinese censorship and providing artificial intelligence for […]

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Digital Peer Pressure

From Seth’s Blog “You’re using it wrong.” That’s how culture develops, of course. That’s why no one uses ALL CAPS IN THEIR EMAIL ANY MORE. Culture develops online at the speed of light. Every interaction tool comes with peers to interact with, and quickly, those tools establish the norms of interaction. As a result, there […]

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‘The Goal Is To Automate Us’: Welcome To The Age Of Surveillance Capitalism

From The Guardian We’re living through the most profound transformation in our information environment since Johannes Gutenberg’s invention of printing in circa 1439. And the problem with living through a revolution is that it’s impossible to take the long view of what’s happening. Hindsight is the only exact science in this business, and in that […]

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Jackson Pollock 51

from kottke In 1950, Swiss photographer Hans Namuth took some photos of Jackson Pollock painting some of his drip paintings, which were used to illustrate a 1951 article in ArtNews. Along with photos published alongside a piece in Life in 1949, they made Pollock and his unusual technique famous. Namuth returned with a film camera […]

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Paul G. Allen, Microsoft’s Co-Founder, Is Dead at 65

from NYTs Paul G. Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft who helped usher in the personal computing revolution and then channeled his enormous fortune into transforming Seattle into a cultural destination, died on Monday in Seattle. He was 65. The cause was complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, his family said in a statement. The disease recurred recently […]

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Climate Scientists: Humans Have Only 12 Years to Limit Devastating Climate Changes

from kottke In a 700-page report detailing the latest research on climate change, a UN panel of scientists strongly warns that unless we make “massive and unprecedented changes to global energy infrastructure to limit global warming to moderate levels” to limit the world’s warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, there will be widespread coastal flooding, food […]

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