2018/09/24: The average monthly payments to those who worked for a transportation app in a given month declined to $783 from $1,469. Meanwhile, people working for leasing apps -- Airbnb, Turo, Parklee and other apps that let you rent assets like your home, car or parking space -- saw their incomes from those platforms rise 69 percent to $1,736 on average.
This is happening as online gig work has become more popular, thanks in large part to the growth in the number of transportation jobs. The share of the working population that has participated in the online gig economy at any point in a year rose from less than 2 percent in 2013 to nearly 5 percent in 2018. There are a number of potential reasons why the average pay for gig economy drivers has gone down. It could be any or all of the below, according to JPMorgan: drivers on average are working fewer hours; demand hasn't increased to meet the increased number of drivers; trip prices have fallen; or platforms are paying drivers lower rates.
The fact that this study did not examine hourly earnings, the metric that drivers care most about, has resulted in misleading headlines,” a Lyft spokesperson said in an email. “Many more drivers are choosing to earn with Lyft on a part-time basis, often fewer than ten hours per week, and they tell us they truly value the flexibility Lyft provides.
The baffling existence of a Joker origin-story movie gets one thing right: For Warner Bros., getting the hell out of the DC Extended Universe is the right move. It’s busted, and the shocking failure of Justice League is proof enough. It’s no coincidence that the studio’s biggest success, Wonder Woman, spent 99 percent of its time ignoring the rest of DC’s bigger world.
DC’s heroes are so iconic, so mythic, that they allow themselves to be altered and bent in any form.
Warner Bros. should be making movies outside its current cinematic universe, even if its current cinematic universe wasn’t stinking up the place. Because this is a power that belongs specifically to DC, not Marvel, and is one of its comics’ biggest strengths.
DC has never shied away from telling stories outside of its comics’ continuity.
2018/06/27: We are witnessing a massive transition in Value Creation from the means of production to the means of Market Production and Curation.
Take for example Uber – here the taxi driver is a bare transitionary commodity and interchangeable. The real value creation instrument is Uber which creates, curates the market – this process now extends from Retail – Amazon – to Manufacturing, AliBaba. This reality signals a great transfer of value creation from the relatively distributed means of production to the massively globally centralised & privatised means of market making & marker curation. The implications of this are massive for inequality and scaling of precarious citizenship.
what is being disrupted is not the plumber or craftsmen but the middle classes – the management, administrative and intermediary skills.
Our Governance model is broken, we live in a ‘systemocracy’ – a world of massive inter-dependency yet we are holding on to 19th century versions of governance. This creates the illusion of sovereignty & supremacy – acting as a denial of the complexity we must confront.
2018/09/21: it is impossible to achieve absolute decoupling of resource use from GDP on a global scale, even with rapid efficiency gains and aggressive taxes on resource extraction. This is the conclusion reached by literally every existing study that has been conducted on the matter (you can follow links to the original research here). The reason is simple: the rate of decoupling is outstripped by the normal rate of GDP growth, even in high-efficiency scenarios. To make matters worse, there are physical limits to resource efficiency, and as we approach them the rate of improvement slows down, giving yet more force to the scale effect of GDP growth.
Unlike resource use, GDP can (thankfully) be dramatically decoupled from carbon emissions. But this solves only one dimension of our ecological poly-crisis. Even if we magically switched to a completely clean and renewable energy system tomorrow, we would be no closer to reversing our overshoot of all the other critical planetary boundaries: biodiversity collapse, chemical loading, deforestation, etc.
What are we going to do with all that clean energy? The same things we’re doing with fossil fuels: raze forests, intensify agricultural extraction, produce mountains of stuff, send waste to landfill – and do all of this at an ever-increasing rate, because our economic system is programmed to require endless expansion.
I have never said that poor countries shouldn’t grow – nor has anyone in this field of study (which Noah would know had he read any of the relevant literature). I have simply said that we can’t continue with aggregate global growth. What we need, then, is a fairer distribution of global income, with much more of it going to poor countries (and poor people within rich countries).
Is it politically impossible? Well, it would certainly require a struggle. But it’s far less impossible than Noah’s preferred alternative, namely, to transcend the laws of physics.
the real cause of lower fertility isn’t higher GDP but rather better girls’ education. GDP is a confounding factor.
While poor countries may need some GDP growth, that should never – for any nation, rich or poor – be the objective as such. The objective should be to improve human well-being: better health, better education, better housing, happiness, etc.
there is no evidence that relying on a switch to services, in and of itself, reduces the material throughput of the global economy.
2016/10/29: Students in rural areas often do not have access to the internet because there are not adequate service providers. Even if there are internet service options available, low-income families cannot afford to pay for this access.
An innovative solution to these problems is to use school busses as Wi-Fi hotspots. During evenings and weekends, each bus is parked in a strategic location throughout the district to serve as Wi-Fi hotspots.
This allowed for the district’s teachers to utilize educational methods like the flipped classroom. Students can now work on projects from home without having to travel long distances to a library to get internet access
In other districts, buses with internet access are being used to help with another obstacle to educational opportunities. This would be extraordinarily long bus rides.
2018/04/05: Teachers can take a break from menial tasks. AI can help set more realistic student goals. Gaps in the curriculum are clearly identified.
2018/09/22: Satoshi built off the work of previous cryptographic researchers, including Wei Dai’s B-money, and Adam Back’s Hashcash. B-money and Hashcash were the first proof of work protocols in the world.
The bitcoin whitepaper outlines the proof of work system, discussing how one CPU would equal one vote. As long as the majority of CPUs were acting in the best interest of the network, then the network would stay secure. Those CPUs would be motivated to act in the best interests of the network because they receive a reward for doing so and because it costs money to provide proofs of work to the network. This basic, economic system of costs and rewards is what secures bitcoin.
Here’s how Satoshi explains it:
“What is needed is an electronic payment system based on cryptographic proof instead of trust, allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need for a trusted third party. Transactions that are computationally impractical to reverse would protect sellers from fraud, and routine escrow mechanisms could easily be implemented to protect buyers. In this paper, we propose a solution to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer distributed timestamp server to generate computational proof of the chronological order of transactions. The system is secure as long as honest nodes collectively control more CPU power than any cooperating group of attacker nodes.”
The network is also secured by a chain of linked signatures. Each block in the bitcoin blockchain contains a secure reference to the block before it and the block after it – a signature. In order to alter the bitcoin blockchain, a malicious actor would need an enormous amount of computing power to change all the blocks in the chain
2018/09/23: La perdita di 1,7 milioni della passata edizione e l'atteggiamento delle case automobilistiche che tendono ormai a disertare in massa i saloni - anche se dalle prime indiscrezioni sembrava che invece a Bologna ci fossero diverse marche - ha portato allo stop.
2018/08/29: something called the Lerna project has added a codicil to its MIT license denying the use of its software to a long list of organizations because it disagrees with a political choice those organizations have made.
Speaking as one of the original co-authors of the Open Source Definition, I state a fact. As amended, the Lerna license is no longer conformant with the OSD. It has specifically broken compliance with clause 5 (“No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups”).
Accordingly, Lerna has defected from the open-source community and should be shunned by anyone who values the health of that community. I will not contribute to their project, and will urge others not to, until and unless this change is rescinded.
We wrote Clause 5 into the OSD for a good reason. Exclusions and carve-outs like Lerna’s, if they became common, would create tremendous uncertainty about the ethics and even the legality of code re-use. Suppose I were to take a snippet from Lerna code and re-use it in a project that (possibly without my knowledge) was deployed by one of the proscribed organizations; what would my ethical and legal exposure be?
2018/09/19: our social lives are shaped by a much stronger force that ignores many of these lines: distance.
In the millions of ties on Facebook that connect relatives, co-workers, classmates and friends, Americans are far more likely to know people nearby than in distant communities that share their politics or mirror their demographics.
The power of distance underlying these other patterns can be seen another way: If we were to divide the United States into two regions, merging counties that are most closely connected to one another, we would get a very simple map. It would not show the coasts versus the heartland, or red America versus blue America.
It would show, simply, all of the continental U.S. and Alaska in one region, and far-off Hawaii in the other. Divide the country further, and cohesive regions become clear at different scales. Northern Florida merges with southern Georgia. Texas and California splinter. Divide the country into 50 regions, and you get something that looks like how we might redraw our state borders to reflect the social worlds people in America inhabit today.
These networks are important in part because of other patterns that are correlated with them. Counties with more dispersed networks — where a smaller share of Facebook friends are located nearby, or among the nearest 50 million people — are on average richer, more educated and have longer life expectancies. Places that are more closely connected to one another also have more migration, trade and patent citations between them.
Counties that are more geographically isolated in the index are more likely to have lower labor force participation and economic mobility, and they have higher rates of teenage births. Some of the most economically distressed parts of the country appear to be the most disconnected.
Close-knit communities can have their own benefits, like enabling neighbors to rely on one another for economic and social support. But previous research suggests that “weak ties” to people we know less well can be particularly valuable for bringing us information we don’t already have. So people in communities that are more broadly connected may be more likely to hear about a wider range of business or educational opportunities.
2018/09/22: Dating takes resource and focus away from problems Facebook should actually be fixing
Facebook getting into dating looks very much like a mid-life crisis — as a veteran social network desperately seeks a new strategy to stay relevant in an age when app users have largely moved on from social network ‘lifecasting’ to more bounded forms of sharing, via private messaging and/or friend groups inside dedicated messaging and sharing apps.
Zuckerberg is not trying to compete with online dating behemoth Tinder, though. Which Facebook dismisses as a mere ‘hook up’ app — a sub category it claims it wants nothing to do with.
Facebook Dating has been carefully positioned to avoid sounding like a sex app but as a tasteful take on the online dating game.
Here are just a few reasons why we think you should stay as far away from Facebook’s dalliance with dating as you possibly can.
Algorithmic dating is both empty promise and cynical attempt to humanize Facebook surveillance
Facebook typically counters the charge that because it tracks people to target them with ads its in the surveillance business by claiming people tracking benefits humanity because it can serve you “relevant ads”. Of course that’s a paper thin argument since all display advertising is something no one has chosen to see and therefore is necessarily a distraction from whatever a person was actually engaged with.
All of a sudden a space that’s always been sold — and traded — as a platonic place for people to forge ‘friendships’ is suddenly having sexual opportunity injected into it.
2018/09/21: Dominated by multinational corporations that contract with local farmers, the industry is concentrated in the state's low-lying southeastern coastal plain – exactly where Florence shattered rainfall records.
Even in fair weather, the state's 2,100 facilities, all decades old, pose problems. Odor and pathogens from animal barns, waste pits, and spray fields can torment and sicken neighbors, prompting three juries this year to award hundreds of millions in damages to plaintiffs suing Smithfield Foods, the world's largest pork producer. Other suits are in the offing.
A Duke University study published online this week reinforced these neighbors' concerns, citing low life expectancy in communities near confined animal feeding operations, even after adjusting for socioeconomic factors known to affect health and lifespan.
All of these threats are amplified after heavy rains. Fields saturated with rainwater can't absorb nutrients from waste pits; excess nitrogen and phosphorous instead appear in rivers and streams, at worst causing algae blooms and fish kills. Manure pits can burst or overflow, sending sludge, microbes, and potentially antibiotic-resistant bacteria into floodwaters, heightening their risk to public health.
"You're releasing all of that and making this soup of eastern North Carolina," Ryke Longest, director of Duke University's environmental law clinic, told EHN.
Il consumo è passato dai 10 chili l’anno per persona del 1980 ai 54 chili registrati nel 2013. Nel paese asiatico si contano circa 700 milioni di suini, pari al 50% del totale mondiale e dal 2000 l'utilizzo di pratiche di smaltimento occulte è schizzato al 70%. Con gravi conseguenze per l'uomo e per l'ambiente
2018/09/20: Google told U.S. senators that the company continues to allow developers to scan and share data from Gmail accounts, according to a letter made public Thursday.
Google said it uses automated scans and reports from security researchers to monitor third parties with access to Gmail data, but gave no details on how many add-ons have been caught violating its policies.
2012/10/02: However inevitable, Diaspora's demise arrives at a time when Moglen's darkest fears have come to bear and the need for a secure, privacy conscious way to connect with others has never been greater. In a post-Facebook world, many of the brands we've come to trust as the linchpins of a new era of democratic communication have turned their backs on such ideals in search of profits. And when the government increasingly beckons, firms like Google and Twitter are having a harder time saying no.
Google's latest transparency report revealed that the U.S. is now a leader in Web censorship, submitting 6,192 items to be removed across 187 requests, more than any other country and up 103 percent over the prior year. It's no different for Twitter whose frequent reluctance to cooperate with law enforcement didn't stop it from complying with most government requests: last year, it supplied some or all of the information requested 75 percent of the time. Earlier this year, the site acknowledged that it would begin censoring Tweets when governments asked it to do so.
The Tory tragedy was to be obsessed about Europe and the Labour tragedy was to be complacent about Europe
2018/09/19: EU has increasingly been concerned with making its copyright system more modern and more competitive as a whole, to attract investments.
If these provisions are implemented, they could have an impact on the amount of content that is actually available online. But Europe has been heading in this direction over the past several years.
Take linking and Article 11. This would not actually be a huge change: The highest EU court has already ruled on a number of occasions that unauthorized linking to protected content might expose one to liability. Under EU copyright, the core idea is that exclusive rights should be granted a “high level of protection.”
In the U.S., the law provides for a fair-use doctrine, but in Europe, even the making of a meme or a GIF is already a bit risky because of different legal approaches. All EU countries have closed lists of available copyright exceptions. In Europe, if you want to make a GIF from, say, Crazy Rich Asians, you first need to identify whether the law would allow that by means of a relevant exception, and then, if you find this exception, you need to check that all legal conditions are also satisfied.
So what now? If Europeans wish to push back against Article 11 and Article 13, they need to prepare to radically change copyright law, including an overall rethinking of its foundations and approach.
2018/08/14: none of this is inevitable, and one of the main barriers between us and a stable planet - one that isn’t actively hostile to human civilization over the long term - our economic system.
dramatically reimagine sectors like transportation and agriculture “at very fast rates.”
humans have to create their own negative feedback mechanisms so the Earth can maintain a stable level of carbon in the atmosphere. That means expanding and repairing the Earth’s natural “carbon sinks,” like big forests that can effectively suck emissions out of the atmosphere and store them naturally.
For high-emitting countries like the U.S., Steffen says the first step to avoiding planetary apocalypse is basically self-evident: “absolutely no new fossil fuel developments. None. That means no new coal mines, no new oil wells, no new gas fields, no new unconventional gas fracking. Nothing new. Second, you need to have a rapid phase-out plan for existing fossil fuels,” starting with coal
2018/09/14: while Brandeis believed that anyone had the right to express their views, he did not believe that anyone had the right to be amplified.
More importantly, he didn’t believe that anyone who had the means to shove a message down someone’s throat had the right to do so.
2018/09/19: Just after the California bill was introduced, the farm equipment manufacturers started circulating a flyer titled “Manufacturers and Dealers Support Commonsense Repair Solutions.” In that document, they promised to provide manuals, guides, and other information by model year 2021. But the flyer insisted upon a distinction between a right to repair a vehicle and a right to modify software, a distinction that gets murky when software controls all of a tractor’s operations.
As Jason Koebler of Motherboard reported, that flyer is strikingly similar—in some cases, identical word-for-word—to the agreement the Farm Bureau just brokered. The flyer and the agreement list the same four restrictions:
No resetting immobilizer systems.
No reprogramming electronic control units or engine control modules.
No changing equipment or engine settings that might negatively affect emissions or safety.
No downloading or accessing the source code of any proprietary embedded software.
These restrictions are enormous. If car mechanics couldn’t reprogram car computers, a good portion of modern repairs just wouldn’t be possible.