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Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Sunspots 638

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




Christianity: A Christianity Today article argues that Christians usually have no business watching rape, as depicted in visual media. Duh!


Computing: Wired considers the question of how to interact with intelligent robots -- not those of the future, but those of the present, for example in our homes, and which are nearly ready.

Ethics: You have probably heard that scientists have recently changed genes in human embryos. There are analyses in Wired, and two, here and here, in Scientific American.

Health: A Wired writer tells us how many time we need to click a mouse, so as to burn one calorie. A lot.

Scientific American reports that remaining friends with someone, after he/she develops dementia, is helpful to both.

History: Listverse has an interesting post about 10 important events in history, which are looked on differently by different countries. (Sample: how the UK and the US see the Revolutionary War.)
Scientific American on strawberries and politics. (The article says little or nothing about 21st Century politics.)

Humor: (or something) The US Government is auctioning off lighthouses, and they won't be very expensive.

A writer for FiveThirtyEight analyzed the contents of over 1000 "Chinese" fortune cookies, and found some interesting things.

Listverse describes 10 unusual places where people have lived, or still live. (Sample: a two-room burrow in a city park.)


Politics: Wired reports that a recently proposed immigration bill wouldn't help US productivity very much, if it were passed, and that Canada is getting a considerably higher portion of its skilled workers from immigration that the US is. (I have since heard other commentators on this bill, on radio, including one from Fox News, who agree that the main thing this proposal does is cut down seriously on the number of immigrants, and that it won't really add much, if any, to the number of skilled workers who immigrate.)

Wired reports that employees of the US Department of Agriculture have been ordered not to use "climate change" and related terms in their reports.


Science: Scientific American reports on a study of dog facial expressions.

Government scientists have produced a report on climate change, not yet released. It's not good. See here and here.



Image source (public domain)

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