Skipped yesterday due to being pretty busy. Today's going to be a final "sprint day" while I do my best to get things cleared for a trip to San Diego to form the West Coast Avengers with my buddies Ben and Trevor. Fortunately I already patched my instances of Drupal so today's work is going to be deadline-driven, but not "must be faster than the hackers" driven.

Links below.

The Supreme Court broke 2 of its strictest rules for the travel ban arguments -- and it shows how seriously they're taking the case (Business Insider via Aol.)

This brings back fond memories of preparing the Oyez site and being ready for the rare same-day audio drops. Maybe I'll exercise my rusty ConInterp muscles and listen to the oral arguments on my flight tomorrow.

A Drink Fit for Royalty: Scotch Whisky (Distiller)

Some fun whisky history concerning the British royal family. This post made me look up what a Royal Warrant was:

Royal warrants of appointment have been issued for centuries to tradespeople who supply goods or services to a royal court or certain royal personages. The royal warrant enables the supplier to advertise the fact that they supply to the issuer of the royal warrant; thus lending prestige to the supplier. Royal families of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Monaco, Denmark, Sweden, and Japan among others, allow tradesmen to advertise royal patronage.


Michelle McNamara Died Pursuing the Golden State Killer. Her Husband, Patton Oswalt, Has Questions for Him. (New York Times)

Updates on Patton Oswalt's late wife's efforts to find and catch a serial killer. Glad to hear that the work was completed and and will brig justice in this decades' old case.

The Return of the Canon Wars (Quillette)

Begun. The Canon Wars have.

In all seriousness, in our current information environment (massive sharding, with personalization), I'm skeptical that this "canon war" will be resolved to anyone's satisfaction. To use an analogy, the old canon was determined by an intellectual conflict that looked like World War II, where there were clear victors. I expect this one to unfold roughly like America's neverending presence in the Middle East.

That said - and I hope I am wrong - may the best Canon win!

(This reminds me that I still need to get a list of the "Great Books" used at St. John's College and make a plan to read them in the next couple of years...)

Drupal remote code execution vulnerability exploited widely (SA-CORE-2018-004) (Drupal Shell)

Patch and update your software, people!

Maker's Schedule, Manager's Schedule (Paul Graham)

Thoughts on scheduling and meetings.

The Woman Who Gave the Macintosh a Smile (The New Yorker)

On Susan Kare's work on the early Macintosh. I see her work and descendants of her work most hours of every working day.

MIDI Is the Fucking Greatest (Vice)

There was no feeling in the old days like swapping in a Creative Soundblaster card to play your library of MIDI files (because MP3s did not yet exist and WAVs were huge) and hearing a song that was beeps and boops suddenly sound symphonic.

Thanks MIDI!

The alt-right is drunk on bad readings of Nietzsche. The Nazis were too. (Vox)

So there’s no way to square Nietzsche’s philosophy with the racial politics of the alt-right, just as it wasn’t fair to charge Nietzsche with inspiring Nazism. But both of these movements found just enough ambiguity in his thought to justify their hate.

I wonder to what extent the rejection of the Western canon (see link above re: "dead white guys") contributes to these misreading of Nietzsche philosophy. In cases where the philosopher is be excluded from curricula, do we see more misinterpretation of the man's views given the lack of a "complete" discussion of his writings and their implications?

The Hardest Job in the World (The Atlantic)

The intensity of public feelings about President Trump makes it hard to measure him against the presidency. His breaks with tradition are so jarring, and the murmuration of tweets so thick, that debate about his behavior tends to be conducted on the plane of propriety and the president’s seeming disregard for it.

If Trump were a less divisive figure, we might view these lapses differently. We might consider that what looks like incompetence or impertinence on the part of the officeholder could also be evidence that the office itself is broken.

If the office is such that we must have good people in it to function properly, then the office itself if broken. It's too bad that Congress has little interest in its responsibilities as well.

Pruitt About to Take Next Step in Banning Science at the EPA (Kevin Drum)

I part ways with Kevin Drum on this issue - we should encourage all science that's used as fodder for making public policy as transparent as possible and that includes making the data from which conclusions are made public. (Esp. given the replication crisis in some fields.) Now, I doubt that Pruitt's motivation is better science, but I have a hard time arguing against this proposal.

For the folks that claim that this is impossible given HIPAA and preserving human subjects privacy in general, I'll point you towards the NIH's page on data sharing in the projects it funds. "HIPAA" isn't a phrase that automatically ends this debate.

(Note that this kind of science is precisely what I do - with industry and university clients - for a living.)

Scientists hate the NIH’s new rules for experimenting on humans (Wired)

Coverage when the new NIH rules (drafted during the Obama administration) went into effect.

Pruitt may be coming at the EPA's scientific policymaking from a Lysenkoist angle, but to what extent this creates more Open Data, the better.

And for the scientists pushing back on this, the fix is easy: Publish your damn data with your papers.

(Contact me if you have difficulty wrapping your head around how this can be possible.)

The Legendary Cult Movie Known as 'Turkish Star Wars' Now Has a Smashing New HD Scan (io9)

It's about time.

For those who are curious what the hell this is:

This post will be updated throughout the day with other links I find interesting.

comments powered by Disqus