Don't End The Week With Nothing
I’m a capitalist. A friend of mine is a devoted Marxist. I think we mutually agree that, considering any particular employee, it is in that employee’s personal interest to stop selling hours of labor and start renting access to his accumulated capital as soon as humanly possible.
A lot of day jobs structurally inhibit capital formation. If I were a Marxist I’d say “And this is an intended consequence of Capital’s desire to keep Labor subservient to it”, but I honestly think it’s true even without anybody needing to twirl their mustache.
The Padres Owe Fernando Tatís Jr. $340 Million. He Owes an Investment Fund Millions From His Payday.
Tatís signed a contract with Big League Advance, an unusual investment fund that pays minor-league players money up front in exchange for a share of their future MLB earnings.
The Big League Advance payouts aren’t loans. If the player never reaches the majors, he doesn’t have to reimburse the money, and Big League Advance loses its stake. When a player turns into a MLB star like Tatís, Big League Advance receives a huge payout. In effect, Tatís is now funding a bunch of minor-leaguers who will never make it. It’s similar to a venture capital fund that backs lots of startups that fail, in return for a gigantic payday from getting in early on a company like Facebook or Uber.
Venture capital for all the things.
How Toxic Fumes Seep Into The Air You Breathe On Planes
The air you breathe on airplanes comes directly from the jet engines. Known as bleed air, it is safe, unless there is a mechanical issue — a faulty seal, for instance. When that happens, heated jet engine oil can leak into the air supply, potentially releasing toxic gases into the plane.
For decades, the airline industry and its regulators have known about these incidents — called fume events — and have maintained that they are rare and that the toxic chemical levels are too low to pose serious health risks.
And yet there’s a lot of pushback to measuring just how bad the problem is.
The US electrical system is not 120V
It’s more than 120V. It’s even more than the other 120V! It is the sum of the two (and sometimes a different two!) that makes us who we are. Learn about the US electrical system in this not-at-all snarky video!
The ‘War on Runners’ Is Getting Hot and Sweaty
I’ve honestly never seen people more excited for walks. It’s the Great American Walk Renaissance. Even the dogs are like: OK, this is getting to be a bit much.
This is why the Big Walk is usually the highlight of the day, right up there with the 4:59 p.m. bourbon.
As for the runners…OK, let’s deal with the runners, because the runners are getting a lot of grief right now. Some folks are getting steamed at the runners—social media teems with accounts of runners barreling around sidewalks like getaway cars from a bank heist, weaving among pedestrians, not adhering to rules of safe distance and personal space. People are getting so mad at runners, they’re starting to call them “joggers,” which runners really hate, because a “runner” is someone committed to fitness, and a “jogger” is someone who waddles around in sweatpants while eating a turkey leg.
How to Manage Your Time
I’ve often complained that people think the most plentiful resource on the planet is your time. Not their time, your time. People are more than happy to spend your time on the strangest things. Take it from a guy who was once paid to scrape the breading off of the leftover fish filets at night, then re-bread the fish the next morning.
Dressing for the Surveillance Age
As cities become ever more packed with cameras that always see, public anonymity could disappear. Can stealth streetwear evade electronic eyes?
I liked this article because it at least acknowledged that these countermeasures are only a training data update away from becoming useless.
The Panic of 2020? Oh, I Made a Ton of Money—and So Did You
Hindsight bias suggests that one day you’ll look back on all of this and... lie
In a classic experiment in 1972, researchers asked people to estimate the likelihood that various positive and negative outcomes might result from President Richard Nixon’s upcoming trips to China and Russia that year. We now call those visits “historic” because they thawed decades of hostility between the U.S. and the communist powers. In advance, no one knew whether the trips would accomplish anything. About two weeks after Nixon’s visits, 71% of people recalled putting better odds on his success than they had at the time. Four months on, 81% remembered being more sure Nixon would succeed than they had said beforehand.
In short, learning what did happen impedes you from retrieving what you thought would happen.
Quite a few studies in this area, all with the same result.
In an effort to avoid the biannual clock switch in spring and fall, some well-intended critics of DST have made the mistake of suggesting that the abolition of DST—and a return to permanent standard time—would benefit society. In other words, the U.S. would never “spring forward” or “fall back.”
They are wrong. DST saves lives and energy and prevents crime. Not surprisingly, then, politicians in Washington and Florida have now passed laws aimed at moving their states to DST year-round.
This is interesting. There are definitely costs to shifting clocks, but that still leaves the question of what the ideal daylight hours are.
I Add 3-25 Seconds of Latency to Every Page I Visit
So if you can inject latency into sites artificially, you can reduce the actual impact of the addiction in a controllable way while not denying the enjoyment of the Internet to yourself.
Hacker News with 100ms latency feels like liquor: Hacker News with 9000ms latency feels like small beer.
95%-ile isn't that good
Reaching 95%-ile isn’t very impressive because it’s not that hard to do. I think this is one of my most ridiculable ideas. It doesn’t help that, when stated nakedly, that sounds elitist. But I think it’s just the opposite: most people can become (relatively) good at most things.
There are several sections here. Every time I thought I was nearing the end, more content showed up.
How to Get Someone to Take One for the Team
Nailed it: “There’s no I in team” says the guy saying someone needs to take one for the team.
I broke Giant’s handheld scanner system by only buying two things
The employee interface verified that my cart contained two (2) items. She scanned both. It verified that those two items were ones I had scanned. And then it told her that she needed to scan five more items to complete the audit, because the audit requires seven items to be scanned.
Admit It: You Have a Box of Cords You’ll Never, Ever Use Again
There’s a box that moved with Sarah Loveless and her husband from San Diego to Charleston, S.C., from Charleston to Dallas and from Dallas to Richland, Wash. The box, never unpacked, went into a closet or the garage each time. Contents: 20 to 30 electronics cords.
Farewell to Starbucks’s green straws
In the long history of pipe-assisted drinking—beginning with the gold beer-sipping tubes of the Sumerians—Starbucks’s plastic straws knew they were a cut above the rest. Their tight white wrapping carried not only English words but a stylish French inscription, Pas recommandé pour utiliser dans les boissons chaudes. Released from that confinement, springing up ready, they stood straight, stiff and tall as a stalk of wheat, with no disfiguring articulations; for they never quailed or bent. And their colour was beautiful. It was darker than the leaves of spring, lighter than the Washington forests and the logo of the company, yet fresh, viridian, straight from the palette of a Monet or a Van Gogh. But despite all that they were doomed to disappear by 2020, for not being green enough.
How Crisco Made Americans Believers in Industrial Food
Crisco’s main ingredient, cottonseed oil, had a bad rap. So marketers decided to focus on the ‘purity’ of factory food processing
In the modern commune, a case of beer is not welcome
didn’t plan to move into a commune. But when The Economist sent me to San Francisco for two months to cover a gap in our Silicon Valley coverage, my housing options seemed unpalatable. I didn’t want to live in a soulless serviced apartment, and hotels and Airbnbs were horrifically expensive for long stays. So I found myself trawling Facebook groups with names like “San Francisco flatshare”. A stranger suggested I look at a spare room in a communal house he knew. I wrote an earnest email introducing myself to its occupants and asking whether they had a room for a month. A few hours later I was in.
I felt like a Neanderthal, supping beer and interjecting to add that surely it was important to enjoy yourself now and again. This sat oddly with a group that was on a different path towards self-actualisation.
Wonders of the Internet
There wasn’t any indication of what it had been part of, or what it was for, but it did have the marking PART 2198768 on the back, so I handed that to The Goog.
And the result was instantaneous and unequivocal: it belongs to my refrigerator. Specifically, it goes in the back of the freezer compartment to keep food from falling down into the back and blocking the drainage path.
I tried to adjust the time on my alarm clock. I failed.
For some reason, my alarm clock requires that I install an app on my phone. And the app required me to create an account.
I’m going to repeat that: In order to set my alarm clock, I had to create an account with the clock manufacturer.