EU to unveil Africa migrant plan as deaths surge | GulfNews.com
European Commission vice president Frans Timmermans and European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini
refugee 
june 2016
Lenape (potato) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Potato variety with "natural" insect resistance that reintroduced the toxins that humans had used selective breading to remove.
may 2016
Hot Tuna Winterland San Francisco, CA Oct 2, 1973
Just Kaukonen (mostly acoustic) and Casady (shining through in all kinds of unexpected places e.g. Corners Without Exits and holding back in some of the standard ones, e.g. Candyman) . No version of Mann's Fate

This is available for purchase with option to sample; see related link.
music 
may 2016
Good Article on the Sony Attack - Schneier on Security
9 months after his post about his "deep skepticism" about the FBI's assertion that North Korea was behind the Sony attack, Schneier admits that they did. But notice how many comments he has from the cyber tin foil hatters. I bet he gained readers on net by playing to their fears and fantasies. Generally, the incentives on the web do not reward bloggers for accuracy or care in their arguments.
cybersec 
april 2016
Did North Korea Really Attack Sony? - Schneier on Security
In cyber security as elsewhere, there is a niche for writers who are opinionated and contrarian. They can be fund to read, but one should not accept what they say at face value. When I read his arguments about why he did not believe the assertion from the FBI that the North Korean's hacked Sony, my prior shifted toward a belief that they did in fact do it.
cybersec 
april 2016
Applied Cryptography Engineering — Quarrelsome
A classic post that illustrates the difference between an expert (Ptacek) and someone who writes well and is entertaining (Schneier.)
cybersec 
april 2016
How Companies Can Beef Up Password Security — Krebs on Security
This is still one of the best articles I've ever read on cyber security. At the time, a meme was reverberating around about how a failure to "salt passwords" was the problem behind password breaches at Linked In, eHarmony. Ptacek demolishes this and points to the real issue -- that sometimes you want a hash function that is quick; sometimes you want one that is slow. It is a nice illustration of credibility based on clarity rather than obfuscation and authority. I knew nothing about hash functions, but as soon as I read his description of the problem at Linked In, I could tell that he was right and everyone else was blowing smoke. I don't know much else about Ptacek, but based on what I could find, he seems like one of the most interesting characters in this space.
cybersec 
april 2016
Two Charts That Demonstrate One Of Android’s Big Security Problems | News from the Lab
Nice illustration of the difference in how the Android community is managed compared to the IOS community. IOS is more pushy and obnoxious, but this does mean that the community as a whole is more secure.
cybersec 
april 2016
The Case Of A Flash Redirector From A Brute Force Password Attack | News from the Lab
Why it's a bad idea to author posts from WordPress using an admin account. This leaks the admin login. Then all the hacker has to do is try common passwords. Apparently a list of 1200 was enough to get into plenty of WordPress sites.
cybersec 
april 2016
Another LinkedIn Sockpuppet | News from the Lab
An illustration of a business model that incidentally encourages/facilitates cyber fraud.
cybersec 
april 2016
After Tax Fraud Spike, Payroll Firm Greenshades Ditches SSN/DOB Logins — Krebs on Security
A reminder from Krebs about how bad security practices tend to be out in the wild.
cybesec 
april 2016
Krebs on Security
Special emphasis on threats related to the payments system and spam. Often has more detail than I want. E.g. "Yet another problem with the Adobe reader or Flash." Good as a reminder of how bad things are out there. Apparently many people do still use this Reader and Flash.
cybersec 
april 2016
Security News: Cyber, IT, National Security | WIRED
Original reporting on cyberthreats. Focus on fewer articles that are more polished.
cybersec 
april 2016
Risk Assessment | Ars Technica
Above average original reporting on current cyber developments.
cybersec 
april 2016
Rank and File Republicans Tell Party Elites: We’re Sticking With Donald Trump - The New York Times
“I want to see Trump go up there and do damage to the Republican Party,” said Jeff Walls, 53, of Flowood, Miss.
politics 
march 2016
Donald Trump’s Presidential Run Began in an Effort to Gain Stature - The New York Times
The annual dinner features a lighthearted speech from the president; that year, President Obama chose Mr. Trump, then flirting with his own presidential bid, as a punch line. ...

That evening of public abasement, rather than sending Mr. Trump away, accelerated his ferocious efforts to gain stature within the political world. And it captured the degree to which Mr. Trump’s campaign is driven by a deep yearning sometimes obscured by his bluster and bragging: a desire to be taken seriously.
politics 
march 2016
For President Obama, a Complex Calculus of Race and Politics - The New York Times
Shortly before his 2009 inauguration, Barack Obama took his family to see the Lincoln Memorial. “First African-American president, better be good,” a 10-year-old Malia Obama told her father, who repeated the story later, a rare acknowledgment of the symbolic shadow he casts.

For all of Mr. Obama’s caution, he is on a mission: to change stereotypes of African-Americans, aides and friends say. Six years ago, he told his wife and a roomful of aides that he wanted to run for the White House to change children’s perceptions of what was possible. He had other ambitions for the presidency, of course, but he was also embarking on an experiment in which the Obamas would put themselves and their children on the line to help erase centuries of negative views.
politics 
march 2016
How Do Patents Affect Follow-On Innovation? Evidence from the Human Genome
by Bhaven Sampat, Heidi L. Williams.

Convincing, and surprising, evidence that patents related to the human genome do not reduce follow-on innovation.
science 
february 2016
Grid-Comparison.jpg (1900×1900)
Comparison on same scale of street grids for various cities in the United States
city 
february 2016
The Influence of Ancestral Lifeways on Individual Economic Outcomes in Sub-Saharan Africa
We explore the role of an individual’s historical lineage in determining economic status, holding constant his or her current location. This is complementary to the more common approach to studying how history shapes economic outcomes across locations. Motivated by a large literature in social sciences stressing the beneficial influence of agricultural transition on contemporary economic performance at the level of countries, we examine the relative status of descendants of agriculturalists vs. pastoralists. We match individual-level survey data with information on the historical lifeways of ancestors, focusing on Africa, where the transition away from such modes of production began only recently. Within enumeration areas and occupational groups, we find that individuals from ethnicities that derived a larger share of subsistence from agriculture in the pre-colonial era are today more educated and wealthy. A tentative exploration of channels suggests that differences in attitudes and beliefs as well as differential treatment by others, including less political power, may contribute to these divergent outcomes.
culture 
january 2016
We're Doomed. Now What? - The New York Times by Roy Scranton
"We were born on the eve of what may be the human world’s greatest catastrophe. " Re return to the type of catastrophizing that we saw back in the 1970s.
december 2015
From Mathematics to Generic Programming Alexander A. Stepanov Daniel E. Rose
If you are a math geek (e.g. into abstract algebra) and a programming geek (e.g. interested in what is going on), this can be a fun read. I finally figured out what a monoid is : almost a group, but e...
math  programming  from notes
december 2015
The Mind within the Net: Models of Learning, Thinking, and Acting by Manfred Spitzer
Great book on the abstract insights about the brain that have emerged from the study of neural nets.
neural  from notes
december 2015
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