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Saturday links 30-Mar-2019: status as a service, niche superstars, screentime, Model T as hatkiller

Here’s links and commentary on recent reading. 1. Status as a Service. It’s a nearly 20,000 word (70 page) post by Eugene Wei. Long but great! At least if you’re into understanding tech and social media. Wei explains how social networks can be thought of Status as a Service, acronym StaaS. Some quotes below in […]

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Sunday 17-Mar-2019: College admissions, Waymo, Wigner’s friend, Zebra flies

Here’s links with commentary from recent reading. 1. Notes on the College admissions scandal. The New York Times has a good explainer. The primary ways people cheated on college admissions where: 1) paying someone else to take SAT tests, and 2) bribing coaches to fake sports resumes. The context here is elite colleges face unrelenting […]

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Sunday links 10-Mar-2019: Facebook privacy, DNA shell casings, workism, our baby shark future

Here’s links/commentary on interesting things I’ve read recently on the internet. 1. Zuckerberg’s social networking privacy statement. Last week Mark Zuckerberg wrote A Privacy-Focused Vision for Social Networking. Much commentary ensued. Below is my summary, where anything in quotes “” is Zuckerberg: Growth in public social media (think Facebook proper) is dead. Private messaging is […]

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Saturday links 16-Feb-2019: Campus disinvitations, reducing suspensions backfires, college loans, Fortnite is all about the social

1. Campus disinvitations are way down. People have been freaking out about disinviting college speakers (in particular conservatives) for the past two years. The chart below is great, because it means now we can all go fight about something else instead. link 2. Stopping school suspensions backfires. New results from a large scale test of […]

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Saturday links 9-Feb-2019: climate and epidemics, ur DNA r belong to us, Alzheimer’s gum disease, Aphantasia

Here’s a list of links/commentary on what I found interesting this week. 1. European arrival in Americas may have caused enough death to cool climate. When Europeans discovered America in 1492, they brought along smallpox and measles. The resulting mass epidemics killed roughly 90% of the population, dropping from 60 to 5 million. Previously cultivated […]

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Wednesday links 30-Jan-2019: Cognition models, Marx and virtue signalling, slime, iterated embryo selection, screentime

1. Scott Alexander on cognition models. Reading the book On Intelligence by Jeff Hawkins when it came out in 2004 was a revelation to me. That’s because Hawkins provided an overarching theory for how cognition works, with his memory/prediction model. From page 99: “The recalled memory is compared with the sensory input stream. It both […]

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Saturday links 19-Jan-2019: Gravitization of quantum mechanics, Revolt of the public, income sharing for tuition, Big 5 personality quiz

1. Roger Penrose on the gravitization of quantum mechanics. Physicist Roger Penrose was on Sean Carroll’s podcast (recommended). I want to highlight a particular point Penrose made at the 1:16 mark. As you may know, the theories of gravity and quantum mechanics are not reconciled. The problem is general relativity (gravity) treats space as continuous, […]

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Sunday links 13-Jan-2019: Apple services, China climate change, superstar cities, falling murder rates

Here’s my weekly list of links with commentary, the first for 2019. 1. Apple’s new services strategy. My new post from earlier today. I argue Apple’s shift to put their movies/TV shows/music services on other hardware platforms was a decision to commoditize the complement. link 2. Climate Change is about China. Noah Smith: “This leads […]

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Sunday Links 23-Dec-2018: US-China cold war, moving to superstar cities, internet shaming

I accidentally published this post yesterday with no content. Just a blank post. Sorry about that. Below is the real thing. 1. US-China, begun the cold war has. The Cold War between the US and Soviet Union ran from 1945-1990. With the arrest of the chief financial officer of Huawei (maker of networking and mobile […]

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Sunday Links 16-Dec-2018: Bitcoin bubble or scam or platform, Waymo cars, population mountains

Here’s what I’ve read recently that’s worth linking and commenting on.  1. Is bitcoin a scam, a bubble, or a (nascent) platform?  I’d answer yes, partial yes, and a maybe. Let’s go one at a time. First up: scam. Kevin Drum argues Bitcoin Is a Long Con Aimed at Those Least Able to Afford It. […]