Note — Apr 24, 2022

No.216 Asides

  • 🤬 🦑 🇪🇸 Awareness of animal cruelty is rising, more people are vegetarian and vegan so, of course, let’s… start farming a smart species. 🤦🏼‍♂️ Octopus farming: critics say plans are unethical for ‘exceptionally intelligent animal’. “Critics counter that cultivating these complex creatures would cause great suffering and replicate the harms prevalent in land-based factory farming. The UK recognised octopuses as sentient beings last year. … Generally solitary animals, octopuses can become aggressive when kept in close proximity to others. Captive octopuses have been known to eat their own arms”
  • 🤓 🌍 🌳 Intriguing game at the Financial Times (!!) where you make policy decisions to try and reach net zero. The Climate Game — Can you reach net zero? “The emissions modelling was developed in 2022 by the International Energy Agency (IEA). The scenarios used in the IEA’s “Net Zero by 2050” report were recalculated to track the temperature outcomes for specific pathways used in the game.”
  • 🤩 📈 🇺🇸 Another great longscroll visualisation by the team at the New York Times. The Tech Bubble That Never Burst. “Yet every time, more money has flooded into start-ups. Instead of a collapse, things got bubblier.” (Via a different Johannes.)
  • 🤯 🇺🇿 🇮🇶 🔢 I had no idea! 😳 Why Algorithms Are Called Algorithms. “This video from BBC Ideas explains that the term has its roots in the work of 9th century Persian mathematician Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī, who also gave the world the word “algebra”.”
  • 🇺🇸 💻 💪🏼 Good! Another crappy big tech over-reaching, this time they were turned down. Web scraping is legal, US appeals court reaffirms. “The Ninth Circuit’s decision is a major win for archivists, academics, researchers and journalists who use tools to mass collect, or scrape, information that is publicly accessible on the internet. Without a ruling in place, long-running projects to archive websites no longer online and using publicly accessible data for academic and research studies have been left in legal limbo.”
  • 🤔 😬 🥢 🧂 🇯🇵 Saline solution: Japan invents ‘electric’ chopsticks that make food seem more salty. “The device transmits sodium ions from food, through the chopsticks, to the mouth where they create a sense of saltiness, according to Homei Miyashita, a professor at Meiji University in Tokyo, whose laboratory collaborated with the food and drink manufacturer Kirin to develop the device.”