Anil points out that the Obama Adminstration is doing a lot more good for the world than Apple right now. If you missed his blog post earlier this week, it’s great and worth a read.
I love cool stuff as much as the next guy. What leaves me at a loss, though, is how many otherwise sane and sensible people give their time and energy freely to help support a company like Apple that, despite its elegant designs and generally excellent products (I use many of them), certainly doesn’t need free PR from some of the most talented people on the web.
Though Apple is a reasonably progressive company, they explicitly don’t give a shit about poor people. (Let’s pretend I found a nicer way to say that.)
Who does need your help? I’d say the current administration does. Because the biggest difference between now and 18 months ago is not that President Obama has gotten elected; It’s that those who support his agenda have gotten lazy about helping in the effort. Remember “We’re the ones we’ve been waiting for?” Well, it seems like a lot of people got tired and gave up on themselves. What if all the energy that went into free promotion for the Apple tablet went into free promotion for what’s been achieved so far, in the hopes of encouraging more achievements in the future?
Imagine if you could rewrite your mind as quickly as a document on your computer. No more painful memories, no phobias or ingrained fears, just a blank slate where the scars that mark each human life used to be. This may sound like the stuff of Hollywood fantasy but last month it came a step closer to reality at New York University. By manipulating memory a research team managed to remove a conditioned fear response among volunteers. As scientists learn more about the mechanics of the mind, such targeting and erasing of traumatic recollections will become easier and easier…
“Someday, after mastering winds, waves, tides and gravity, we shall harness the energy of love, and for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.”—Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (via psychotherapy)
Google publicly and famously surrendered the integrity of its searches to Chinese repression in order to do business there, and never provided a good enough rationale for breaking its pledge to do no evil. We have no way of knowing what the company surrendered technologically in its efforts to break into the fastest growing Internet market in the world. If the deal involved giving the Chinese government some level of access to the Chinese activity occurring on Google—as a way of verifying that their censorship deal was being adhered to—then perhaps this access could have been exploited, leading to the security breach.
So it’s not that Google’s cloud computing technology is so easily hackable, it’s that Google’s misguided partnership with a repressive regime is so easily exploitable. My concern—for Google and for us—is that the reason they know it’s the Chinese government behind these attacks is because Google may have inadvertently given them the key.
Gotta get me some pictures like that. So when I’m famous people can see I was always cool even before I was famous.
You, camera girl, take my picture. Watch me smoke this. Watch me smoke it so cool. God, this is, what is this? This is a clove. You got a real—? No that’s okay, if it’s your last one I’ll just…I’ll drink this coffee. Here, get me drinking this so cool. Wait. Wait let me fix my hat. No, stop, delete those, I’ve got hat hair. Oh god damn it, now there’s a coffee stain on my—go away.
Don’t need any stupid “photos of his youth.” When I’m famous I’ll pay someone to Photoshop one.
The iPhone continues to lead in user interest surveys, but Android is closing in fast. New data from research firm ChangeWave shows that users are definitely interested in Google’s mobile OS, with a massive jump in the number of potential buyers eyeing Android-capable phones in its latest survey.
ChangeWave queried 4,068 current and potential smartphone consumers last month and noted that a full 21 percent said that they would prefer Android on their next smartphones—a jump of 15 percentage points from the year before. Comparatively, 28 percent of respondents said they would prefer iPhone OS; this makes the iPhone the leader in this category, though this number dropped four percentage points year over year. BlackBerry/RIM OS went up by one point to 18 percent, and those interested in Windows Mobile dropped from nine to a mere six percent. The only mobile OS sadder than WinMo appears to be Palm/Web OS, which dropped from six to three percent.
When it comes to user satisfaction, Apple and Google are neck-and-neck. Seventy-seven percent of iPhone users reported being “very satisfied” with their devices, compared to 72 percent of Android users, 41 percent of BlackBerry users, 33 percent of Palm users, and 25 percent of Windows Mobile users. (ChangeWave points out that for the Palm Pre specifically, the number was 58 percent.)
This isn’t to say that the iPhone is going to fall prey to Android phones tomorrow—ChangeWave pointed out that customers who plan to buy in the next 90 days still overwhelmingly prefer the iPhone, and interest in the iPhone 3GS has not dropped off as quickly as it did for the iPhone 3G. However, it does show that Google has succeeded in turning the heat up on the smartphone competition, no doubt aided by the highly anticipated launch of the Nexus One.
Steve Benen had a good piece noting that since Obama became president, US forces have taken out or apprehended several key terrorist leaders, but that the White House hasn’t called celebratory press conferences to draw conspicuous attention to them. Bush and Cheney, he avers, would make sure everyone knew about it.
I think this is true. And if true, why? Well, the obvious explanation that would occur to people is that the Republicans are more willing to use terrorism to score political points. I think this is true, too. But then we must ask in turn: why is this true?
I don’t think it’s merely that Republicans are more aggressively willing to politicize stuff, although they are that. But there’s more. This is a layer of analysis we don’t usually get to in politics, but this is really the heart of the matter, to me.
I believe it has to do with the governing psychologies of liberals and conservatives. The two groups have completely different moral systems – read this article, for example. It describes five foundational moral impulses found in all humans, in all societies, in different combinations:
• Harm/care. It is wrong to hurt people; it is good to relieve suffering. • Fairness/reciprocity. Justice and fairness are good; people have certain rights that need to be upheld in social interactions. • In-group loyalty. People should be true to their group and be wary of threats from the outside. Allegiance, loyalty and patriotism are virtues; betrayal is bad. • Authority/respect. People should respect social hierarchy; social order is necessary for human life. • Purity/sanctity. The body and certain aspects of life are sacred. Cleanliness and health, as well as their derivatives of chastity and piety, are all good. Pollution, contamination and the associated character traits of lust and greed are all bad.
Liberals care most about the first two, conservatives about the last three – I’d say especially the fourth. And terrorism is a mortal and existential threat to social order and human life. So conservatives are going to be more worked up about it. They’re going to see the world – well, more like Dick Cheney sees the world.
I wish there was a Tumblr function whereby you could see how many times you’ve hearted/reblogged a specific person (not just crushes), for two reasons:
1. To determine at which point you have abdicated yourself and entered the swoon zone. Commence to either weaning or stalking IRL.
2. To determine what is redeemable / salvageable in your Tumblr relationship after someone has posted the 20th thing that makes you think: meh…. Maybe it’s simply a disparate-interest week; then again, maybe you’re not cut out for each other…
I agree and funnily enough had some thoughts in a similar vein to #1 today. I do however think that #2 is more needed because there is nothing in place right now for tracking “meh” posts/people. This feature shouldn’t be a public diss, but more for me as a user to see better who to unfollow.
Listen. There are people who will tell you that “the decade” (whatever that means) doesn’t start until 2011. There are thousands of reasons to ignore these people, but here’s the best one: they’re wrong.
A decade is an arbitrary span of 10 years. You can distinguish one such span from another by any identifying feature you choose. For example, the decade called “the Sixties” consisted of the years 1960–1969. The decade when I believed “nascarpone” was a kind of cheese eaten at auto races was 1987–1996. The fact that “there was no year zero” IS IRRELEVANT.
The only time the year zero argument matters at all is when you’re using ordinal numbers, as in “21st century.” The 21st century began in 2001 because the first century began in 0001. But there’s no justification whatsoever for saying that the oh-tens aren’t underway. If we had referred to the Sixties as “the 197th decade” then, yes, the 202nd decade wouldn’t start until next year. But we don’t do that so SHUT UP SHUT UP OH GOD PLEASE SHUT UP.*
*forgive the harsh language; I’m still wasted on Manischewitz