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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Sunspots 509

Things I have recently spotted that may be of interest to someone else:

The Arts: National Public Radio reports that seismic shifts were used as a basis for music from the bell tower on the University of California's Berkeley campus. The tower is 100 years old, and Berkeley is in an area that experiences lots of motion in the earth.

Computing:
(Sort of) Wired warns us not to buy a Smart TV yet, because TV manufacturers have ruined them. Translation -- too many ads, and they aren't talking about the ads in the programs.

Education: NPR on why little kids should play with blocks.
Health: National Public Radio reports that a higher percentage of Tanzanians are vaccinated against measles than the percentage in the US.
NPR also reports that cancer patients don't often understand what their doctors are saying about their survival time.

Politics: The Equal Justice Initiative has released a report on lynchings of African-Americans in the South, which report says that the number of lynchings had been under-reported, and that lynching was a form of terrorism.
NPR reports that less than 1% of the US Federal budget is for foreign aid, and that the most of that is for health.

The Washington Post has posted maps of the most gerrymandered congressional districts in the US. Some really strange shapes. (Gerrymandered districts are designed to put a lot of people who vote for your opponents together, making it more likely that you will win in non-gerrymandered districts. It has been practiced by both parties.)

Image source (public domain)

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