Google’s self-driving cars have logged in 300,000 miles without a single accident (that we can blame on the computers).

Obama has actually been better on energy policy than I would have guessed. The two exceptions are the off-shore drilling moratorium and coal.

I don’t know what’s more encouraging, getting closer to effective male birth control, or a conversation that follows that doesn’t involve a bunch of people sneering about how men have no interest in such things.

Fully 98.3 percent of job gains among those with at least a bachelor’s were realized by those with advanced degrees – again, a small fraction of the overall population.”

Another link on a familiar Hit Coffee subject: Cohabitation does not improve likelihood of marital success.

I find an article about how the academy discriminates against conservative would-be professors to be uninteresting because it falls in “no, duh” territory (especially in social psychology, delved into here), but I found the counterpoint interesting: “Just because they say they would discriminate doesn’t mean they actually would.”

The thing about these “cut the cord” (cancel cable) articles is they all act like they are righteously retaliating against greedy providers. With the obvious exception of illegal downloading, who exactly do they think is giving them the means to do so? One way or another, they’re going to get their money. Or we’re going to stop getting content.

Smithsonian.com has an interesting look on the history of pink and blue and their association with masculinity and femininity.

I’ve frequently used Portland as an example of a self-styled “creative class” city that didn’t pan out. I may have to take that back.


Category: Newsroom

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11 Responses to Linkluster 1-2-3

  1. Scarlet Knight says:

    Linkluster 1-2-3

    The most common reference to that number is The Taking of Pelham One Two Three. For you young-uns, Quentin Tarantino didn’t invent the concept of referring to people by color; it was this movie.

    Note: your first link is showing up above the picture.

    self-driving cars

    I hope they figure this out. Driving is such a chore, and to automate it is a major paradigm shift.

    cancel cable

    FYI, the article is exactly 18 months old. It is so old that one of the options listed (in2TV) no longer exists. One thing that the article misses is that once you get internet and telephone from a company, the extra cost of cable isn’t much. Of course a lot of people seem to think that a land-line phone is a luxury.

    To me, the best part of having my cable package is the DVR. It makes TV watching MUCH more convenient. The expensive part that most people could do without are the packages like HBO and Showtime, which normally involves getting 8 versions of the channel. To me, nothing on cable is must-see TV. I could probably live without ESPN if push came to shove; the only show on ESPN that I must watch is PTI, and that exists as a podcast. For all of the “free” entertainment available, the reason why this material is “free” online is that it is subsidized by those who pay for ESPN.

    For those who don’t know, ESPN is a very expensive part of having cable: your local cable provider pays Disney $5.82 per month per subscriber to carry all of the English language ESPN channels. As a contrast, they pay Time Warner 99 cents for TNT. Therefore, everyone who has cable is contributing to the huge salaries being paid to coaches and professional athletes.

  2. trumwill says:

    The most common reference to that number is The Taking of Pelham One Two Three.

    Is this a movie you would recommend me seeing? I’ve seen it play on cable here and there.

    Note: your first link is showing up above the picture.

    D’oh! Well, I caught the fact that originally the first five links were the same as the last five from the previous. One step forward and two steps back.

    FYI, the article is exactly 18 months old.

    Well, with the exception of the service that isn’t available anymore, tis still pertinent. Some of the “around the web” aggregators do need to account for this, though. (Seriously, I know Marcus Jordan is in trouble. That is no longer “news”.) So I blame them.

    To me, the best part of having my cable package is the DVR. It makes TV watching MUCH more convenient.

    Indeed so. I want to set my father-in-law up with it, but I don’t want to saddle him with a fee. Back before we hit some financial roadbumps, I was considering making him a MythTV box.

    For all of the “free” entertainment available, the reason why this material is “free” online is that it is subsidized by those who pay for ESPN.

    Sports is one of the main reasons we took the plunge. A lot of people (not you, here anyway) complain that they have to pay for ESPN even though they don’t watch sports… well, sports is one of the main things that prevents people from cutting the cable. It’s one of the few things that is (at present) irreplaceable through most of the alternatives.

  3. Scarlet Knight says:

    Is this a movie you would recommend me seeing?

    Yes, but if you don’t you aren’t missing much.

    I am speaking of the original 1974 version starring Walter Matthau, not the 2009 remake starring Denzel and Travolta.

    The original, while interesting in its own right, is an action movie from a time when there were no special effects. The most interesting things about it are the star-studded cast which includes Matthau, Jerry Stiller, Doris Roberts, Hector Elizondo, and Earl Hindman*, and seeing what NYC looked like back then. Of course, if you have never been there, since what it used to look like won’t be much of a feature, but I’m sure Peter and David Alexander would appreciate it.

    sports is one of the main things that prevents people from cutting the cable.

    Yes, there are plenty of people who subscribe to cable SPECIFICALLY for ESPN, and would get rid of it otherwise. That may be the only channel that has that sort of loyal audience. Also, sports is the last water cooler programming there is. Everything else can be DVRed or watched online, but sports need to be watched when they are happening. This is why it is so popular with advertisers.

    As much as ESPN costs, it is still a bargain compared to the combined cost of the other stations. Under an al a carte system, most of them would die unless they were offered for free** just to keep viewership up.

    *JS was George’s father on Seinfeld, DR was Raymond’s mother on Everybody Loves Raymond, HE was the concierge in Pretty Woman, and EH was the neighbor on Home Impovement.

    **News Corp PAID cable companies to broadcast Fox News Channel in order to ensure carriage. The new strategy to ensure carriage is to make the cable companies your partner. For example: MLB Network is only 2/3 owned by MLB, the remaining third is split among various providers, with half being owned by DirecTV and the other half being equally split among Comcast, Cox, and Time Warner. SNY is owned by the New York Mets (65%) Time Warner (27%) and Comcast (8%). By making the providers minority partners, they were able to maintain editorial control while still giving them a financial stake. This is opposed to the NFL, which completely owns NFL Network. This is why MLBN and SNY are much more successful than NFLN.

  4. trumwill says:

    I couldn’t tell if we were on the same page for ESPN (and the other sports networks). Sounds like we are (I think true a la carte would be a disaster). That’s interesting about the co-ownership.

  5. trumwill says:

    Speaking of movies with star casts, have you see The Second Civil War (I may have mentioned it before, maybe like fifty times)? I can’t think of any other movie with such an impressive cast that was so promptly buried by its producers (HBO). Someone, somewhere decided that they didn’t want HBO to be associated with that movie and what many would take from it.

  6. Scarlet Knight says:

    have you see The Second Civil War? I can’t think of any other movie with such an impressive cast that was so promptly buried by its producers (HBO)

    No, I never even heard of it, but I do agree it has an impressive cast. Hell its director (Joe Dante) also has an impressive resume.

    Idiocracy also had an impressive cast and director, and was buried for various reasons, mostly due to sensitive subject matter.

  7. trumwill says:

    Idiocracy also had an impressive cast and director, and was buried for various reasons, mostly due to sensitive subject matter.

    Yeah, there are some parallels. Though Office Space also got little attention until it became a cult classic.

    I showed the opening sequence of Idiocracy to Clancy and her sister Ellie. Clancy wasn’t entirely amused because it dealt with the muck she used to see day in and day out (still does, though less so).

  8. Scarlet Knight says:

    Though Office Space also got little attention until it became a cult classic.

    I don’t think Office Space was intentionally buried though. It was more of a marketing failure. Keeping in mind that this came out before Scrubs, it had a bunch of no-names. Everyone knew the Bobs’ faces, but no one knew their names. For whatever reason, the ads didn’t feature Jennifer Aniston at all and she was at the height of her career then. On the poster, all there was was an office worker covered in Post It notes.

    Maybe Mike Judge is a weird dude and big media companies don’t know how to handle him. With King of the Hill at least he was working with Greg Daniels.

  9. Φ says:

    Can’t remember why I kept this post in the queue for so long. Anyway . . .

    fewer workers means lower incomes and less productivity. Lower incomes means there’s less money available to help meet the social needs of those genuinely unable to work. It means there’s less opportunity to invest in infrastructure and education.

    Which sounds like a feature to the Portlandia kind of people. They’re young, white and in good health, so they aren’t really interested in programs for the “genuinely” unemployed, even if that isn’t code for minorities. They don’t have children, so they don’t want to pay taxes to support schools that they don’t need.

  10. trumwill says:

    Except that Portlanders are more likely to support programs for the needy than are residents of Greater Phoenix. Or are likely to like to think of themselves as such. (Yeah, there are racial/ethnic/citizenship angles involved.)

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