Weekly reads: Pt. 8

June 13, 2016 | Weekly reads

The empty brain – Your brain does not process information, retrieve knowledge or store memories. In short: your brain is not a computer“For more than half a century now, psychologists, linguists, neuroscientists and other experts on human behaviour have been asserting that the human brain works like a computer.”

BuzzFeed Terminates Ad Deal With Republican Party Over Trump“We certainly don’t like to turn away revenue that funds all the important work we do across the company. However, in some cases we must make business exceptions: we don’t run cigarette ads because they are hazardous to our health, and we won’t accept Trump ads for the exact same reason.”

How Mark Zuckerberg Led Facebook’s War To Crush Google Plus“Have a mad vision and you’re a kook. Get a crowd to believe in it as well and you’re a leader. By imprinting this vision on his disciples, Zuckerberg founded the church of a new religion.”

Why You Can’t Get a Ticket to the NBA Finals… and every other major event on the planet.“When our artificially intelligent robot overlords arrive, they’re gonna have awesome seats for Beyoncé.”

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Weekly reads: Pt. 7

June 5, 2016 | Weekly reads

Prepare for summer holidays. Order all the books you’ll need and eat lots of pie (rhubarb).

One month in: What CNN has learned from Facebook Messenger bots“The fidelity relies on how advanced these chat bots are, and how we make them more chat than bot. We all know what it feels like to talk to an automated service.”

Big Data Sleuths Uncover Clues to the Roots of Depression“There are already insights—specific genes and biochemical pathways—that have been identified now for brain disorders that are being followed up on. If we get lucky and some of those prove to be useful, we can start to see some clinical advances within about five years.”

UC Berkley Non-Required Summer Reading: A Collection of Firsts“You’re about to arrive for your first day of classes at Berkeley. Perhaps it will be your first time away from home. Maybe you’re the first one in your family to go to college. Whatever your background and experience, you’re sure to have plenty of “firsts” during your time here.”

The books that critics say you should read this summer“Quartz analyzed the lists published by a number of news organizations, including the Chicago Tribune, Huffington Post, Newsday, the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, and the Wall Street Journal (fiction and nonfiction.)”

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Weekly reads: Pt. 6

May 29, 2016 | Weekly reads

The inside story of Facebook’s biggest setback“From Zuckerberg’s vantage point, high above the connected world he had helped create, India was a largely blank map. Many of its citizens – hundreds of millions of people – were clueless about the internet’s powers.”

The secret rules of the internet“The moderators of these platforms — perched uneasily at the intersection of corporate profits, social responsibility, and human rights — have a powerful impact on free speech, government dissent, the shaping of social norms, user safety, and the meaning of privacy.”

The Post Office Almost Delivered Your First E-Mail“Reisner was now the postal service’s vice president of strategy, and he was more convinced than ever that the USPS needed to be part of this revolution. But it seemed as though everywhere he turned, somebody was telling him to forget about it”

The elderly are way savvier with password security than millennials“The majority of respondents ages 51 to 69 say they completely steer away from easily cracked passwords like “password,” “1234,” or birthdays, while two-thirds of those in the 18-to-34 age bracket copped to using those kinds of terms.”

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Weekly reads: Pt. 5

May 24, 2016 | Weekly reads

I’ve read about Snapchat, Russian facial recognition, and Chinas internet propaganda. I thought you might be interested.

China’s internet propaganda is more subtle and sophisticated than it ever has been“The party’s goal is not to inspire deep love of China or hatred for its enemies. It instead aims to prevent, or at least break up, any widespread anti-party consensus among the public.”

My Little Sister Taught Me How To “Snapchat Like The Teens”“I would watch in awe as she flipped through her snaps, opening and responding to each one in less than a second with a quick selfie face. She answered all 40 of her friends’ snaps in under a minute.”

How Russia’s New Facial Recognition App Could End Anonymity“Eric Schmidt referred to facial recognition as “the only technology Google has built and, after looking at it, we decided to stop.””

Generalists Get Better Job Offers Than Specialists“[…] exposure to many things has real value. At the undergraduate level and in other professional programs, diverse skills are probably better than a specialized focus.”

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Weekly reads: Pt. 4 – SXSW edition

March 14, 2016 | Weekly reads

Hello from Austin and SXSW Interactive. This week is a mix of both old and new as well as high and low. I think it’s because being away like this, surrounded by insights and interesting people, makes me look for other things than usual. I hope you enjoy it.

Fixing Twitter“Jack Dorsey has said Twitter should be “the most powerful microphone in the world.” Lately it’s been a powerful microphone for people to complain about Twitter.”

The Click Clique“Many made more than $20,000 a month—some more than $80,000—just from posting links to sites that sold the short-shorts and Chanel shoes that they wore in their photos.”

Down the Rabbit Hole: Alice in Wonderland’s Influence on Video Games“And yet, so much more often, the books seem to show up in games that are not about them, and in much more managed ways—as interludes, interpolations, allusions, shoutouts.”

Why Online Gradebooks Are Changing Education“By stepping away from the Big Brother of online gradebooks, my husband and I chose to prioritize learning and sanity—both his and ours—over grades. We were not interested in producing another “excellent sheep” or fracturing our family.”

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