This is what the best of data journalism looks like
Some fantastic stuff in here.
Science is a frustrating, iterative process. When we communicate it, we need to get beyond the idea that a single, stunning study ought to last the test of time.
Atul Gawande - a doctor himself - talks about how to scale healthcare up, using the metaphor of a restaurant chain. A great read.
Unexpectedly fascinating. By sifting through reams of routine bureaucratic paperwork left behind when cities fell, the NY Times pulls together how ISIS was funded... and it’s not what anyone expected.
Phenomenal article. Also, gross.
Yet this uprising of the young against the ossified, monolithic power of the National Rifle Association has reminded me that the flaws of youth — its ignorance, naïveté and passionate, Manichaean idealism — are also its strengths. Young people have only just learned that the world is an unfair hierarchy of cruelty and greed, and it still shocks and outrages them. They don’t understand how vast and intractable the forces that have shaped this world really are and still think they can change it. Revolutions have always been driven by the young.
One must wonder how many such strident calls to action are needed before any action occurs.
An interesting read. It's certainly true that the level of competition is getting so intense that even quality candidates are bouncing out of the system nowadays. I can't say that this story resonated with me personally -- I made peace with my choice long before I left academia, and I'm certainly happy now -- but I definitely see people in my work going through the loss that this writer feels.
Seems appropriate that on the morning of the successful Falcon Heavy launch I was reading this. A fantastic read from a couple years back, excerpted from a bio about Musk:
If you’re confused about the whole Bitcoin/cryptocurrency mania going on right now, or wondering about the murmurs about blockchain being The Next Big Thing: this article is a fantastic and accessible primer. Worth your time.
The paradox about Bitcoin is that it may well turn out to be a genuinely revolutionary breakthrough and at the same time a colossal failure as a currency.
One of those articles that found me at exactly the right moment, as I’m being loaded up with responsibilities. A great reminder
People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things.”
Pulitzer Prize, here we come
The brain just doesn’t stop throwing out surprises, does it?
A compelling read about an alien world: the fish markets of Japan.
What the Japanese buying agent determines by his quick and practiced analysis of that sliver of tail is an indication of the tuna's inner color, its oil content, and the presence, if any, of parasitic disease. A smooth-grained and marbled tail is a prime indication of quality. The richness of the tuna's lipid content, its fat, can be gauged by how slippery the slice of tail feels between the fingers. Pockmarks reveal parasites. It's a complex diagnostic method that is mastered only with years of practice. The overall form and color of the tuna are also quickly assessed at the same time. The ideal of these qualities, inner and outer—the word for this ideal is kata—is also a bit of a mystery to outsiders.
I was recently bemoaning the demise of the album in favour of the playlist. Perhaps I just need to find better influencers to follow online.
Pretty cool. A cartographer who worked on Apple Maps talks about how far ahead Google is with their mapping, and why that’s unlikely to change.
P.S. image-heavy, view on original webpage
A considered article with a surprising twist in the tail.
Awesome to know that people like this exist.
An important one for people to know before they share data with Facebook (or any other social network, for that matter).
Great portrait of Buzz Aldrin. Explores how a man can live with the spectre of one achievement always hanging over him. Insightful, and more than a little sad.
Reinforcing yet again how weird biology is.
A think tank sends researchers to understand the values of middle America, with the goal of finding common ground. They find anything but. A brilliant, if concerning read.
A nice profile of Google X, and the hard thing about trying to do hard things 😊
Keep speaking out, ladies. Some of us are listening, and invested in seeing change. #IHearYou
A great read on parenting children to become mature, self-reliant adults.
Say whaaaaaat? OK this is freaking awesome
Another technique is based on some beautiful work by William Freeman and colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, who showed how if you magnify really small changes in a video of a person, you can see subtle changes in the colours in their face that correspond to their pulse rate. We showed that you can use this to distinguish real people from computer-generated people.
Fascinating read for anyone interested in the brain.
A great read. Underscores the importance of rigorous design and a rethinking of the paradigm of software engineering; particularly since software now underpins so many aspects of daily life, from routing 911 calls to controlling cars.
For all the creatives in my life who struggle with self-doubt.
Great speech, and a worthy topic for debate.
Yes, we disagree constantly. But what makes our disagreements so toxic is that we refuse to make eye contact with our opponents, or try to see things as they might, or find some middle ground.
Instead, we fight each other from the safe distance of our separate islands of ideology and identity and listen intently to echoes of ourselves. We take exaggerated and histrionic offense to whatever is said about us. We banish entire lines of thought and attempt to excommunicate all manner of people — your humble speaker included — without giving them so much as a cursory hearing.
A brilliant article covering not only a pivotal scientific discovery, but also a chef's tour of much of cosmology. If that wasn't hard enough, it manages to also work in poetic phrases like: "Science owes its epistemological gravitas to its stern insistence that every idea faces the firing squad of experiment."
Settle in with a coffee, this one is a treat.
Brilliant (and necessary!) research. And the pictures alongside this article are jaw-dropping.
The revolution that ain't. Like in many things, science fiction is further away than it seems. Reality has a lot to answer for
Great read about an inspiring CEO.
Good article and I love this quote particularly.
“Her full nature, like that river of which Cyrus broke the strength, spent itself in channels which had no great name on the earth. But the effect of her being on those around her was incalculably diffusive: for the growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts; and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.”
An unexpectedly moving article, especially given its publication on a site where I go for my tech news.
most of Damore’s memo seems to be talking about preferences, which is to say, rather than innate skill he means what women would rather be doing versus what men would rather be doing. In fact, one recurring finding in sex difference research is that in cultures seen as more egalitarian, differences in preferences between men and women become more pronounced. With more opportunity, says one hypothesis, men and women are more likely to follow their respective blisses.
Interesting insight here.
Had Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen been able to post YouTube videos of the horrific and pointless slaughter on the western front in World War 1, the British public would have sued for peace. In a democracy, with a free media, the horrors of war are a hard sell
Wow, what a read. An inspiring and encouraging story of an unlikely partnership. Pour yourself a coffee and settle in, because you'll have a hard time pulling yourself away from this one.
A very cool photojournalism assignment -- document the life and times in Australia's Outback. View on a big screen, some gorgeous pics.
A great primer on the court case that condemned Google's book-scanning operations to the dustbin of history.
This is fascinating, important, and terrifying.
Super interesting read - how the Dutch are using their years of experience to become ambassadors for climate change preparation.
And part two of the primer on anonymous sources, namely which ones are more trustworthy than others. A good read.
A good primer on reading the news from Washington critically.
A good read about... reading!
Takes a bit to get to the data, but there is some interesting stuff in here.