Paris Review: The Art of Fiction No. 21, Ernest Hemingway.
“I always rewrite each day up to the point where I stopped. When it is all finished, naturally you go over it. You get another chance to correct and rewrite when someone else types it, and you see it clean in type. The last chance is in the proofs. You’re grateful for these different chances.”
The Atlantic: U.S. Supreme Court - GPS Trackers Are a Form of Search and Seizure.
“If the government puts a GPS tracker on you, your car, or any of your personal effects, it counts as a search—and is therefore protected by the Fourth Amendment. The Supreme Court clarified and affirmed that law on Monday ...” Good.
GitHub/Alefeuvre: Grid displayer bookmarklet for Twitter Bootstrap and ZURB Foundation.
Oh, handy. I usually craft a custom CSS class for doing this kind of thing, but I’ve never remembered to store it in a snippet.
A List Apart: Initiation to Code.
Synchronicity. I just mentioned the importance of mentoring yesterday. Speaking of which, I’d surely like to see an ALA Guild.
ReadWrite: How GitHub Apparently Ended Up In The Crosshairs Of Chinese Hackers.
You know, I’m looking forward to a book on ‘invisible warfare’ that’s taking place as we go about our daily routines ...
Mashable: This organic, wheat-based kitty litter caused a nuclear waste leak.
LANL must go gluten-free ...
Guardian.UK: Deepwater oil spill - BP steps up PR effort to insist all is well in the Gulf.
“This year, the NWF found that higher-than-normal rates of death for many species continued, and are likely linked to the disaster: dolphins along Louisiana’s coastline were found dead at four times historic rates last year, and research has shown the deaths of 12% of brown pelicans and 32% of a species of gull can be linked to the spill. The NWF report also says the eggs of many animals – from trout in the Gulf to pelicans nesting as far away as Minnesota – have been found to contain oil and the dispersant used by BP in the wake of the spill.”
NakedCap: Fracking’s New Nemesis - Earthquake Lawsuits.
“Indeed, some of the bigger players appear to have decided it’s best to keep these cases out of the press if possible. BHP Billiton and Chesapeake Energy settled a 2013 case lodged by five homeowners for a confidential amount.” Industries prefer to minimize case law on the books. Swift gag settlements are the first line of defense.
In These Times: Is There Anything Wrong with GMOs?
“Everybody thinks patenting plant materials happened with GMOs, but it didn’t. It goes back to the 1930s. Farmers in the developed world have been buying seeds from companies for many, many years.” And, indeed, it is true. Other interesting tidbits within.
The Millions: Sixteen Writers on the Decision Not to Have Kids.
“The perfect life does not and never will exist, and to assert otherwise perpetuates a pernicious fantasy: that it’s possible to live without regrets. Every important choice has benefits and its deficits.”
The Bookseller: Median author advance under £6,600.
~$9,700. Our culture still loves the archetype of the ‘starving artist.’ Rice and beans, that.
Slate: Satellite images show ISIS, other groups destroying archaeological sites.
War vs. history. And you can’t blame Daesh alone.
WaPo: A ‘megadrought’ will grip U.S. in the coming decades, NASA researchers say.
“North America’s last megadroughts happened in medieval times, during the 12th and 13th centuries. They were caused by natural changes in weather that give megadroughts a 10 percent chance of forming at any time.” We should be planning ahead, in the Southwest. Will we? Likely not. I think of Burt in Soap (snaps fingers, pretends he’s not corporeal).
TG’s Political Wire: Reagan’s Speeches Analyzed for Dementia.
“The findings [snip] do not prove that Mr. Reagan exhibited signs of dementia that would have adversely affected his judgment and ability to make decisions in office.” Um ... if you lived through the era, you’d know that’s not exactly true. We knew he was impaired in 1980; no media sources wanted to touch it at the time. If you remember the veritable ‘cuckoo klatches’ he called press conferences, you’ll know what I mean [how many clarifications they had to make, every time he began to ‘wing it’]. Only when Mondale ran up against him in ‘84, did the wall of silence begin to crack.
I had a dream the other day: A prominent Democrat comes out with Reagan’s exact 1980 platform. The Right vilifies her/him as a “liberal”. The candidate reveals who authored the platform, and then offers to switch parties if folks will vote for her/him, appealing directly to the people. Kinda entertaining.
Josh Mitteldorf: Fertility is Kaput, but Life Goes On.
“An infertile, older population acts as a kind of buffer during times when the population might otherwise be expanding too fast. When there is plenty of food, the post-reproductive segment eats some of it, but they do not add to population growth in the next generation. Then, when times become more difficult and food is scarce, the older, weaker segment of the population is the first to die off, and this is no real loss to the population’s reproductive potential.” Quite interesting; do add it to this week’s reading list.
Fuel Fix: Oil workers in West Texas and New Mexico were underpaid millions, Labor Department says.
“Among the problems found, employers were failing to include bonus payments when calculating overtime rates, weren’t paying for time spent working off-the-clock and paying flat rates despite the hours worked by employees. There were also instances of workers being misclassified as independent contractors.” Check out image #5, in the bottom gallery. Also, no word in this article about the workers getting their owed $$.
KOB: Amtrak says Southwest Chief’s New Mexico routes to remain.
“The announcement ends more than two years of fear and uncertainty in Northern New Mexico’s smaller communities about whether Amtrak would alter the route.” But for how long, unless we infuse some money into infrastructure repairs ... ?
Star Telegram: Antibiotic-resistant bacteria found downwind from feedlots.
“For years, scientists have known that people can contract antibiotic-resistant bacteria by consuming contaminated meat or water. Smith and Mayer’s findings indicate that humans could also be exposed to ‘super bugs’ or ‘super bacteria’ traveling through the air.” Close your windows, turn on that A/C, when you drive by feedlots.
Guardian.UK: World’s largest aircraft looking for investors to give it liftoff.
“People say, God, the Hindenburg [the German hydrogen-filled airship that crashed in flames in 1937]. But on this, you are flying the world’s biggest fire extinguisher.”
c|net: Driver follows GPS off disused bridge, and wife dies, police say.
I assume self-driving cars will have failsafes for bad GPS coordinates ...
Pacific Standard: The Trembling Aspen Is in Trouble.
Quaking aspen, please. We have quite a few in these parts. I can tell you from drives up the Ski Basin Road, photographing the aspen ‘altitudes’, the ones closest to the road are the most unhealthy. You would imagine the asphalt would capture and store water underneath, but in practice, it seems the exposure to sun (edge of forest along road, no shorter trees to shade trunks) and pollution from vehicles stresses them more than overall drought does. My theory, anyway. YMMV. We had some particularly severe tent caterpillar incursions a couple of years ago, but they don’t seem to do lasting damage. The trees affected are now as full as they ever were.
Shift - Guest, Thomas Vander Wal.
Forgot to point to Euan and Megan’s latest podcast. Particularly interesting to bloggers. Tags didn’t show up on blogs until long after my last redesign. At times, I’ve wanted them (clickable tags, but also hashtags for social benefits). Now that hashtags are on the wane from overuse, I doubt I’ll include tags in my next redesign.
I suppose my most controversial category (in my own mind) is scholarly. I wanted a broad term to pull in not just education, but also philosophy, authority, etc. - reducing a bunch of individual categories that would be required to cover the same space. Not everything is a good fit there, but it’s the best I can do for now.
And the travel category needs to be widened; I keep chucking international news bits in. For scholarly I can deal with a bit of ambiguity; for travel, I can’t. I imagine many people scratching their heads when they see that category on a post.
Then comes the question, do I just add an international category, and back-correct my posts ... or just start fresh from date of new category? I could simply make it travel/international. I rebel against two-word categories. Can’t help it. I want it fast, simple. I like to believe elegance is still rewarded.
The seemingly-vital trivialities of running a long-term weblog ...
AE Scripts/Plugins: Tickler.
Could be very handy when you don’t have time/budget to do a full-on animation.
NY Times: Islamic State Destruction Renews Debate Over Repatriation of Antiquities.
I used to be pro-repatriation. I suppose Zahi Hawass made such a strong case for Egyptian artifacts to be best appreciated in their country of origin, I was convinced. The Bamiyan Buddhas, Arab Spring, etc. have convinced me otherwise now. Spread cultural treasures widely throughout the world - with liberal travel/touring displays. Humanity’s art and history belong to no individual nation, region or political system.
PopSci: Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Are No Match For Medieval Potion.
Gross, but “... the combined liquid killed almost all the cells; only about one in 1,000 bacteria survived.” No word on what it does to the host ...