Gongol.com Archives: 2016 Weekly Archives
Brian Gongol


June 30, 2016

News Rational government sounds much better than it would actually be in practice

Ironically, perhaps, the best evidence against a purely "evidence-based" government is the terrible misuse and abuse of "rational" arguments for terrible government behavior. Principles and ideas still matter.

Humor and Good News Auctioneers with a beat

(Video) Close your eyes and try not to picture Busta Rhymes

Science and Technology Americans are all over the place when it comes to self-driving cars

An overwhelming majority say in one survey that they're OK with autonomous cars -- yet there's all kinds of blowback to the news of a fatal crash involving an auto-piloted Tesla. Some crashes are inevitable, but if guardian-angel technology can keep us from getting into quite so many bad situations, then we'll all be much better off.

Business and Finance The most American-made cars are from Toyota and Honda

Contrary to what the nameplates might suggest, Japanese cars are often very American

Computers and the Internet "Progress" towards a sale of Yahoo's assets

This long, drawn-out process can't be doing anything to help morale



June 29, 2016

The United States of America 30-year-olds in 1975 versus that same cohort today

Today's 30-year-olds are better-educated, much less likely to have been married, vastly less likely to be living with a child, substantially less likely to be homeowners, and somewhat less likely to have achieved a middle-class income. Very interesting stuff.

Computers and the Internet Facebook changes news feed to favor people

The site is going to do whatever it takes to make sure that users visit as often as possible, for as long as possible. And if that means scaling back the amount of "publisher" content in favor of what individuals like and share, then that's what they're going to do. Woe unto any publisher that has built a business model off of social sharing, though -- which, anymore, is most of them.

Business and Finance A quick history of the $20 bill

Who belongs on the currency? Plenty of admirable people. There's room for Harriet Tubman there, too.

Computers and the Internet The robots are coming to take your jobs: The lawyerly edition

An "AI lawyer" is fighting tens of thousands of parking tickets and winning

News Five Thirty-Eight forecasts overwhelming odds in favor of Hillary Clinton election

The former Secretary of State and Senator from New York may not be very popular, but she's running against someone whose celebrity is mainly based upon being a celebrity, and who cashed-in on his name by selling it to crooked licensees. As Benjamin Franklin sought to remind his contemporaries: Mind your business.


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June 28, 2016

Threats and Hazards "Russia has been engaged in an increasingly aggressive gray war across Europe"

American diplomats report harassment ranging from nuisances to criminality, executed by Russian agents. It goes well beyond the level of fraternity pranks.

Agriculture Convenience stores, fresh food, and food stamps

The law of unintended consequences rears its ugly head

News Sen. Bernie Sanders: Condescending, ungrateful, and uncooperative

He lost the race for the Democratic nomination, and he's making every signal that he wants to burn down the ship

The United States of America A political typology of the United States in 2014

Probably not all that different from how it looks today -- and the fissures are showing. Our political parties are coalitions that form before the general election day...but they're not holding together very well in 2016.

News What the "Brexit" from the EU means to Northern Ireland

One person's Twitter rant about the effects on the one part of the UK that will still have a land border with the EU after the UK leaves. It's sad, angry, and in a couple of cases vulgar -- but well-worth reading.



June 27, 2016

Computers and the Internet An app to help deter human trafficking (that is: sex slavery)

Taking photos of unoccupied hotel rooms can help with the prosecution of those who take advantage of their fellow human beings for exploitation

The United States of America George Will resigns membership in the GOP

He says Donald Trump has infected the party and it is no longer behaving in a way that reflects his principles. And he declined to enter a catfight over the story because Trump "has an advantage on me because he can say everything he knows about any subject in 140 characters and I can't".

Science and Technology A remarkable look at the deflation in solar-power production costs

Costs have supposedly fallen by 80% since 2008

Business and Finance S&P drops UK's credit rating over EU departure

One thing is certain: The buying power of the pound versus the dollar has declined considerably in the wake of the "Brexit", so it's a fine time to be an American buyer in the hunt for British stocks.

Aviation News The FAA's new commercial drone rules

Playing catch-up at this stage


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