A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Archive for December 2018

[NEWS] Eleven New Year’s Eve links: time, Metropass, Toronto, data, Syria, technology, retrofuture

  • This L.M. Sacasas essay at the Frailest Thing about our contemporary struggles with time, with the sense that time is escaping us faster than we can follow it, is a timely read for New Year’s Eve.</li.
  • Steve Munro celebrates the venerable Metropass of Toronto, giving way at the end of today after nearly four decades to the Presto card.
  • Ben Spurr writes at the Toronto Star about how Metropass fan Nathan Ng is trying to put together an online collection of all 464 of these cards.
  • Christopher Hume writes at the Toronto Star about ten things people in Toronto can do in 2019 to make their city better, starting with boosting the Rail Deck Park.
  • Motherboard notes that a vast store of works previously kept under copyright is set to enter the public domain, and why this will happen.
  • Wired notes that 2018 is a year where people began to recognize the importance of their public data. Will 2019 be a year of belated attempts to protect this?
  • Adnan Khan at MacLean’s notes that the Syria where the Assad regime is set to declare its complete victory over opponents is not going to be a country that Syrian refugees will want to return to.
  • The New York Times links to seven of its articles exploring ways for individuals to live better lives in 2019.
  • This Quartzy essay makes the case for giving up on New Year’s resolutions as, among other things, overly inflexible.
  • Rosie Spinks at Quartzy makes the case that a life thesis is better than New Year’s resolutions.
  • The Toronto Star shares an Isaac Asimov essay from 1983 in which he sought to predict 2019. (He was right about the importance of superpower conflict, right about education if optimistic in predicting adaptation, wrong about Moon colonies.)

[PHOTO] Looking southwest from the Yonge-Eglinton Centre

Looking southwest #toronto #skyline #yongeeglintoncentre #winter #clouds

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2018 at 2:30 pm

[PHOTO] Gold-peach sky to the west, Dupont towards Dufferin

Gold-peach sky to the west #toronto #winter #evening #gold #peach #sky #dufferinstreet #dupontstreet

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2018 at 1:00 pm

[PHOTO] Tower into the blue

Tower into the blue #toronto #artgalleryofontario #cntower #skyline #financialdistrict #grangepark #tower #blue

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2018 at 11:30 am

[PHOTO] AGO Selfie

AGO Selfie #toronto #artgalleryofontario #me #selfie

Written by Randy McDonald

December 31, 2018 at 10:00 am

[NEWS] Ten JSTOR Daily links (@jstor_daily)

JSTOR Daily is a quality source of links that can accumulate quickly.

  • JSTOR Daily shares ten poems about travel.
  • JSTOR Daily notes the decidedly mixed environmental legacies of missionaries.
  • JSTOR Daily explains why, exactly, a landlord in the medieval world might ask for a rose at Christmas time as rent.
  • JSTOR Daily explores the immersive cyclorama of the 19th century.
  • JSTOR Daily notes how, with a canny emphasis on the prestige of their drink and their lineages, dealers of champagne were able to build lucrative empires.
  • JSTOR Daily takes a look at the 17th century German painter of insects Maria Sibylla Merian, now at last gaining recognition.
  • JSTOR Daily summarizes a paper that examines why the literal image of Nelson Mandela is so popular, is so iconic.
  • JSTOR Daily notes that, alas, the balance of the evidence suggests alcohol is not good for people.
  • JSTOR Daily looks at “story papers”, the inexpensive 19th century periodicals carrying stories targeted at boys and young men which ended up changing both popular literature and gender identities.
  • Alexandra Samuel at JSTOR Daily takes a look, after Rachel Giese, at the ways in which the Internet and Internet culture can lead to outbreaks of misogyny.

[BLOG] Some Saturday links

  • Architectuul looks back at its work over 2018.
  • Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait reflects on an odd photo of the odd galaxy NGC 3981.
  • The Crux tells the story of how the moons of Jupiter, currently enumerated at 79 and including many oddly-shaped objects in odd orbits, have been found.
  • Gizmodo notes how some astronomers have begun to use the precise rotations of neutron stars to calibrate atomic clocks on Earth.
  • Keiran Healy shares a literally beautiful chart depicting mortality rates in France over two centuries.
  • Hornet Stories notes that, two years after his death, the estate of George Michael is still making donations to the singer’s favoured charities.
  • At In Media Res, Russell Arben Fox celebrates the Ramones song “I Wanna Be Sedated”.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes how unauthorized migrants detained by the United States are being absorbed into the captive workforces of prisons.
  • Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution approves of the Museum of the Bible, in Washington D.C., as a tourist destination.
  • The NYR Daily looks at soccer (or football) in Morocco, as a badge of identity and as a vehicle for the political discussions otherwise repressed by the Moroccan state.
  • Roads and Kingdoms reports on the paiche, a fish that is endangered in Peru but is invasively successful in Bolivia.
  • Peter Rukavina makes a good point about the joys of unexpected fun.
  • The Signal reports on how the American Folklife Centre processes its audio recordings in archiving them.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel debunks some myths about black holes, notably that their gravity is any more irresistible than that of any other object of comparable mass.
  • Strange Company shares the contemporary news report from 1878 of a British man who binge-drank himself across the Atlantic to the United States.
  • Window on Eurasia reports on a proposal in the fast-depopulating Magadan oblast of Russia to extend to all long-term residents the subsidies extended to native peoples.
  • Arnold Zwicky reports on another Switzerland-like landscape, this one the shoreline around Lake Sevan in Armenia.