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September 02, 2014

"The Future Could Work, if We Let It"

Nice piece by Farhad Manjoo about technological change in general but focusing on cars in particular

"10 Things Every College Professor Hates"

Pretty much nailed it. #2 is probably the most apt:

Don’t ask the professor if you “missed anything important” during an absence.

No, you didn’t miss anything important. We spent the whole hour watching cats play the theremin on YouTube!

Of course you missed something important! We’re college professors! Thinking everything we do is important is an occupational hazard. Here’s an alternative way to phrase it: “I’m so sorry I missed class. I’m sure it was awesome.”

"How to Game the College Rankings"

You can put this down as a law of human behavior: if the stakes are high and if a system can be gamed, then, sooner or later, the system will be gamed. This is a fascinating if rather depressing case study.

(So what would be a good college rating system? I think XKCD is, as usual, on the right track.)

"Backstory: Global warbling"

Ms. Gorin may list herself as a "standup comic based in Las Vegas" but she could have a great run as a political pundit. Or a forecaster: notice the column's date and her use of "caliphate".

Freud called it displacement. People fixate on the environment when they can't deal with real threats. Combating the climate gives nonhawks a chance to look tough. They can flex their muscle for Mother Nature, take a preemptive strike at an SUV. Forget the Patriot Act, it's Kyoto that'll save you.

That's why in 2004 we got "The Day After Tomorrow" – so we could worry about junk science that may or may not kill us in 1,000 years instead of the people who really are trying to kill us the day after tomorrow.

Link via Ed Driscoll.

"A lack of knowledge of basic history explains a lot."

Yes, indeed, it usually does. Victor Davis Hanson, "Obama Fails History 101".

Tell me something I don't know

"Most Americans are Financially Illiterate".

Sigh.

September 01, 2014

"The 101 Most Useful Websites"

If you want to be on the Net on this holiday, this list should give you some things to look at.

August 31, 2014

Mark it down: this is the day the USA jumped the shark

"The US Has Launched A Social Media Offensive Against ISIS".

"21 Buildings You Need To See In Your Lifetime"

Sample:

Contrary to what you might think, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Rio de Janeiro is not, in fact, a spaceship.

"Top 10 Reasons to Watch Soccer Instead of Football"

Good list. I'd add two more: soccer is much better to exercise to and Leo.

August 30, 2014

"25 Maps That Explain College Football"

College football is here again! (Did you see Texas A&M kick the Head Ball Coach's butt?) Here's a piece that "explain[s]" college football.

I found most interesting the alleged facts that players tend to come from "big cities in hot places" but coaches come from the Midwest. 

"The Hot 10 2014: Rose's Luxury, Washington, D.C. (No. 1)"

Sounds like a great restaurant. But my daughters went and couldn't get in. (Link via my younger daughter.)

August 29, 2014

"How a Real Air War Could Demolish ISIS"

At least for right now, ISIS is practically defenseless against air attack

Of course, that could change.

"The Loudest Word in Rock and Roll"

Everything--and I do mean everything--you're likely to want to know about the use of "the" in names of rock groups

"Arby's Has A $10 Secret Menu Item Called The 'Meat Mountain'"

I don't think it's a "secret". Here in NC they're advertising that bad boy on TV a lot.

The $10 sandwich has 2 chicken tenders, 1.5 oz. of roast turkey, 1.5 oz. of ham, 1 slice of Swiss cheese, 1.5 oz. of corned beef, 1.5 oz. brisket, 1.5 oz. of Angus steak, 1 slice of cheddar cheese, 1.5 oz. roast beef, and 3 half-strips of bacon, writes Sarah Halzack at The Washington Post

August 28, 2014

"Vanity plates rejected by DMV as too racy for road"

The California DMV pays three--three, mind you--employees to keep HAMRJMR, PSTLCHK, RDSN57, and DOOTERS off the road

"Why Are Rotisserie Chickens So Cheap?"

The answer sounds right, if a bit . . . icky.

"The mystery of the falling teen birth rate"

Interesting, but the article doesn't consider my preferred hypothesis: the kids are just too darned demoralized to fornicate. 

"The New Science of Pairing College Roommates"

I'd be surprised, but pleased, if the "science" has improved since I attended. My college's crack housing folks put me--quiet, nerdy--with a hugely unhappy liar and a borderline alcoholic. 

It wasn't fun.

August 27, 2014

"The Future of College?"

I don't think Minera will be "the future of college," but it could well be a darn sight better than a lot of what currently passes for higher education.

And at $11,450/year for tuition and fees, the price seems right.

"Moving to a Smaller Home, and Decluttering a Lifetime of Belongings"

I can certainly relate.

THE amount of goods a couple can accumulate over 44 years living in the same house can be overwhelming. 

This sounds like excellent advice:

For people thinking about beginning the task, here are some ideas from Kimberly McMahon, of Let’s Move..

■ Write some organizing time on your calendar.

■ Set a timer to get started.

■ Start small, even if it’s matching up a cup with a saucer.

■ Get a friend to help.

■ Fill a trash bag once a week.

■ Call and book a donation pickup for the next day.

"How country music went crazy: A comprehensive timeline of the genre's identity crisis"

"Are you aware that Nashville is currently embroiled in an outright civil war?"

"Who Lost the Cities?"

Good question.

A question for the Reverend Jackson: Who has been running the show in Newark, in Chicago, in Detroit, and in Los Angeles for a great long while now? The answer is: People who see the world in much the same way as does the Reverend Jackson, who take the same view of government, who support the same policies, and who suffer from the same biases.

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