Icosian Reflections

…a tendency to systematize and a keen sense

that we live in a broken world.

Reading Feed (May 2015)


Blog: Thing of Things | On Exclusion

Blog: Matt Levine | Recruiting U.S. Banks Against FIFA Bribery -- "Any economist will tell you that the optimal tax is one on foreigners living abroad, and a tax on unpleasant foreigners living abroad is even better."


Blog: Fredrik deBoer | the problem with experimentation -- not actually about "experimentation" in the social sciences, it might be useful to clarify.

Blog: Thing of Things | Why I'm A Gender Abolitionist, At Least On Even-Numbered Days

Blog: GiveWell | Update on GiveWell’s web traffic / money moved: Q1 2015 -- the numbers are good!


Blog: Fredrik deBoer | it's all in there -- also Fredrik deBoer | the "not left-wing" claim and A Debate on Online Political Discourse.

arXiv: Beam Calibration of Radio Telescopes With Drones


Blog: Slate Star Codex | AI Researchers on AI Risk


Blog: Popehat | Happy To Be Here -- one of the most honest stories of depression I've read.


Blog: GatesNotes recommends books: Hyperbole and a Half, Allie Brosh; What If?, Randall Munroe.


NYT: Everybody needs to stop freaking out about laundry pods


Blog-Misc: How random error and dirty data made Regnerus even wronger than we thought -- Regnerus = that gay-canvassers paper which was recently discovered to be entirely fabricated. Also, NYT | Polling's Secrecy Problem; hint: it's not about the secrecy of the respondents.


FiveThirtyEight: Why Ken Jennings’s Jeopardy! Streak Is Nearly Impossible To Break


Blog: Popehat | Two Stories About The Criminal Justice System And Consequences -- "The rule is this: citizens generally face consequences for breaking the law and violating the rights of others, but those with the power to administer those laws and impose those consequences rarely face any themselves."

Blog: CFAR | Q&A: Isn’t self-deception sometimes productive? -- "How do we confront the fact that having false beliefs is sometimes more efficient and productive?"

Blog: Marginal Revolution | The rapid rise and fall of the Black Panthers -- circa 1970-1982

Blog: Schneier on Security | An Example of Cell Phone Metadata Forensic Surveillance -- "[T]hey determined that the assassins worked in groups, each with a leader and each adhering to specific procedures. Everyone in the group called the leader, and he called everyone in the group, but the lower-level operatives never called one another."


Comic: PhD Comics | 1797 -- Professor: "Good, good. Now imagine if you worked that hard all the time and not just when you had a deadline." / Student...

Blog: MeyerWeb | Warning Hashflags -- What's wrong with Twitter auto-appending a stormtrooper helmet to every "May the Fourth" post?

Blog: Volatile and Decentralized | A modest proposal: SOSIGCOMMOBIXDI -- A Google engineer dares to speak truth to academia.

Blog: Marginal Revolution | Deaths in police custody, research results -- "The limited data available do not suggest a recent overall increase in the number of homicides by police or the racial composition of those killed, despite the high-profile cases and controversies of 2014-2015..."

Blog: Thing of Things | Concerning Utility Monsters -- Or, aren't we utility monsters, relative to pigs?

Blog: Unequally Yoked | What Duties Come With Wealth? [Radio Readings] -- Leah's radio show (including pre-readings) addresses "Is there Such a Thing as 'Too Wealthy?'"


Blog: Jeffrey Zeldman | "Creative" is not a dirty word

Blog: Fredrik deBoer | the supervillain's guide to saving the internet

Article: Bloomberg Business | March Madness Makers and Takers

Article: CSMonitor |
What happens to people when they think they're invisible?

Blog: Edward Tufte | Grand truths about human behavior

Blog: Overcoming Bias | Stock vs. Flow War -- As we become more able to liquidate natural assets, total war becomes more possible -- and more costly.

Blog: Schneier on Security | An Incredibly Insecure Voting Machine -- "VITA investigated the machine, and found that you could hack [it] from across the street with a smart phone."

Feature: Canada Loves the Poop Emoji -- "Americans, by the way, adore the eggplant."

Blog: Free Code Camp | A Vision of Coding, Without Opening your Eyes -- Blind coder Florian Beijers describes his workflow

Interview: Max Gladstone, Author of the Craft Sequence Novels -- I really enjoyed Three Parts Dead, and the rest of Craft is on my to-read list.

Blog: Fredrik deBoer | one year of emptiness at the Krach Leadership Center -- with disturbing echoes of my own school's "Student Organization Center at Hilles" -- read also L'Hote | my dream: five federal universities


Self: May 1 Links:

Trivia: Where do planes keep the oxygen for oxygen masks?

Neat Things: Butterick's Practical Typography

New Blog: Otium -- by Sarah Constantin, mathematician, armchair philosopher, and professional data scientist trained at Yale.

Blog: Thing of Things | On Praiseworthiness