IN WHICH Ross Rheingans-Yoo, a sometimes-poet and else­wise a recently-graduated student of Computer Science and Math, oc­cas­ion­al­ly writes on things of int­erest.

# Reading Feed (last update: April 2)

A collection of things that I was happy I read. Views expressed by linked authors are chosen because I think they're interesting, not because I think they're correct, unless indicated otherwise.

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Blog: Don't Worry About the Vase | On Automoderation -- Zvi concretizes much the the vague disease I was feeling around Automoderation, despite it being an eminently plausible approach to its design specification.

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Blog: JeffTK | Slack tool: predict -- Note that Jeff's implementation is of a market mechanism that's not budget-balanced, and rewards marginal improvements of the "last price", rather than marginal improvements of the "current best price". I suspect that these design decisions have the net effect of denoising the signal of predicter quality.

Blog: Schneier on Security | New Gmail Phishing Scam -- "The article is right; this is frighteningly good."

# A Verse for the City

From the top of the towers,
you could see past the narrows,
past our lady of the harbor,
See the curve of the earth
on the vast, blue horizon
from the world’s greatest city,
in the land of the free.

All the brave men and women
that you never would notice,
from the precincts and fire halls---
the first on the scene.
Storming into the buildings
on the side of the angels,
they were gone in an instant,
in the belly of the beast.

We are children of slavery,
children of immigrants,
remnants of tribes and their tired refugees.
As they tumbled down,
we were stronger together—
stronger than we ever knew we could be—
as strong as that statue that stands for the promise
of liberty here in this city of dreams.

All the

# A Verse for the Memorial

These kids have learned some history
and they know what warfare used to be:
tanks and guns and soldiers
that moved across the land—
with strategies and battlelines
converging at a place in time;
and lives were lost for reasons
that the world could understand

On the History Channel, war
can look exactly like before,
when you were certain it was over
They could come back home to safety;
they could celebrate the victory;
and the landmines were all buried
’cross the ocean far away.

But a different kind of war
has reached our shore,
and you never see it coming anymore.

# A Verse for the Fourth

On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep (where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes), what is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep -- as it fitfully blows -- half conceals, half discloses?

Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam; in full glory reflected now shines in the stream: ’tis the star-spangled banner, O! long may it wave o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

As a friend reminded me recently, the better-remembered verse is a question, which is almost always left unanswered.

But today, what is our answer to the question "O! say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave?"