Friday Links

Oddly, I’ve read a bunch of stuff this week. There’s no theme to these articles, they’re covering a variety of topics. Sometimes I include an ‘if you only read one’ but this week, all of them are pretty good.

Some links for your Friday (on Monday, oops!)

This first link is from my dad — I’m very lucky to have parents who know what I like and while they don’t always approve, they do pass things along to me that might be interesting. This article is one of those instances. Actually, there are two articles from my parents in this post! The first, from my father, and the second, from my mother. In the first article, much of the article is about my favorite author, William Gibson. The second article is told in a webcomic format, which my mother knows I like.

  • What Is an @uthor? Today’s social media landscape confronts contemporary authors with a qualitatively different opportunity to confront their public selves. (LA Review of Books)
  • Guilty, Then Proven Innocent With eight successful exonerations so far, North Carolina’s Innocence Inquiry Commission could be a national model for fighting wrongful convictions. (The Atlantic)
  • Scorched Earth, 2200AD Climate change has done its worst, and now just 500 million humans remain on lifeboats in the north. How do they survive? (Aeon)
  • Send in the Weathermen: As the Department of Defense’s only commando forecasters, SOWTs gather mission-impossible environmental data from some of the most hostile places on Earth.
  • Wokking the Suburbs As he stepped woozily into the first American afternoon of his life, the last thing my father wanted to do was eat Chinese food. (Lucky Peach)

Links: July 3rd-11th

Tongues take a while to untie. (via Indexed by Jessica Hagy)

Tongues take a while to untie. (via Indexed by Jessica Hagy)

What a Woman’s Choice Means to the Supreme Court and Social Conservatives: A choice isn’t really a choice when you can’t find another job, or when it’s the end of the month and the checking account is empty and the morning-after pill costs $50 without insurance, or when the only approved birth control methods won’t work for you. For decades, activists have invoked a woman’s “right to choose” — choose when it’s the right time for her to have children and when it’s not, and to choose which contraceptive method to use in the meantime. In theory, women are still allowed to make these choices in America. In practice, though, to choose you must have options. Health insurance is one of the things that guarantees options and access. Freedom, as the conservatives say, isn’t free. For a choice to be a true choice and not a default, sometimes we have to subsidize it. (New York Magazine)

Back from the edge: In the 1990s China had one of the highest suicide rates in the world. Young rural women in particular were killing themselves at an alarming rate. In recent years, however, China’s suicides have declined to among the lowest rates in the world. In 2002 the Lancet, a British medical journal, said there were 23.2 suicides per 100,000 people annually from 1995 to 1999. This year a report by a group of researchers from the University of Hong Kong found that had declined to an average annual rate of 9.8 per 100,000 for the years 2009-11, a 58% drop. (Economist)

How not to say the wrong thing: Draw a circle. This is the center ring. In it, put the name of the person at the center of the current trauma. For Katie’s aneurysm, that’s Katie. Now draw a larger circle around the first one. In that ring put the name of the person next closest to the trauma. In the case of Katie’s aneurysm, that was Katie’s husband, Pat. Repeat the process as many times as you need to. In each larger ring put the next closest people. Parents and children before more distant relatives. Intimate friends in smaller rings, less intimate friends in larger ones. When you are done you have a Kvetching Order. (LA Times)

 A Job Seeker’s Desperate Choice: On the morning of March 20, Shanesha Taylor had a job interview. It was for a good job, one that could support her three children, unlike the many positions she’d applied for that paid only $10 an hour. The interview, at an insurance agency in Scottsdale, Ariz., went well. “Walking out of the office, you know that little skip thing people do?” she said, clicking her heels together in a corny expression of glee. “I wanted to do that.”But as she left the building and walked through the parking lot, she saw police officers surrounding her car, its doors flung open and a crime-scene van parked nearby. All the triumphant buoyancy of the moment vanished, replaced by a hard, sudden knot of panic. Hours later, Ms. Taylor was posing for a mug shot, her face somber and composed, a rivulet of tears falling from each eye. A subsequent headline in The Huffington Post said it all: “Shanesha Taylor, Homeless Single Mom, Arrested After Leaving Kids in Car While on Job Interview.” (New York Times)

What Pastel Hair Means For Women Of Color: Our latest obsession here at Refinery29 is probably pretty obvious to you by now: We can’t get enough of pastel hair. So, when Diana and Everdeen, two R29ers, approached us and expressed interest in taking the pastel plunge, we jumped at the chance to put them in touch with celebrity colorist Lena Ott of the salon Suite Caroline. Ott is known for creating vibrant, rainbow-inspired hair colors, making her the perfect person for the job. (R29)

More than rumors drive Central American youths toward U.S.: Some Central Americans feel encouraged by rumors that children who cross into the United States will be allowed to stay. But other fundamental reasons fueling migration have remained unchanged for decades: family unification, hometown violence, inescapable poverty and lack of opportunity. Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, the so-called Northern Triangle of Central America, are among the poorest and most dangerous countries in the hemisphere. Plagued by ruthless street gangs and a growing presence of Mexican drug traffickers, the countries have seen homicide rates grow by 99% over the last decade, with the current rate five times that of the United States, according to a new study by the British-based Action on Armed Violence. (LA Times)

 You Can Delete, but You Can’t Forget: I erased all of my mother’s emails after she died. I want them back. (The Atlantic)

These Park Benches Welcome The Homeless Instead Of Rejecting Them: Instead of being designed to thwart a good sleep, these park benches in Vancouver fold out into miniature shelters. (Fast Company/Co.Exist)

The Next Big Thing In Urban Planning? Backyard Cottages: As the days of suburban sprawl give way to those of urban density in U.S. metros–“smart growth,” most call it–providing sufficient housing remains a challenge. Decades of planning regulations and highway patterns support single-family homes built far outside a city center. Even in areas where big residential towers make sense, developing them takes a long time and costs a lot of money. Manhattan wasn’t built in a day (Fast Company/Co.Exist)

The Best And Worst Design Of The 2014 World Cup: From ugly stadiums to underwear slips to new and improved soccer balls (Fast Company/Co.Exist)

Friday Links (are somewhat depressing)

  • Some truly beautiful photos. The View from Above: from landscapes to seascapes, from mountaintops to the valleys below, from Bhutan to Bismarck — a bird’s-eye tour of the world (Foreign Policy)
  • Another really interesting, somewhat unbelievable (but all too real) and ultimately depressing article. It’s also a good demonstration of how the internet brings people together more than it isolates us. Omar and Me: My strange, frustrating relationship with an American terrorist (Foreign Policy).

And now for some music, a little post-rock for relaxation. Enjoy the album Restore by My Cats A Stargazer:

Some of the links in this post came from the following newsletters: Longreads, NextDraft and Story of the Week.

Friday Links

  • The Chinese artist Liu Bolin's latest project in Beijing is documented by Jason Lee from Reuters. Liu is known as the invisible man for using painted-on camouflage to blend into the background of his photographs (via The Guardian)

    The Chinese artist Liu Bolin’s latest project in Beijing is documented by Jason Lee from Reuters. Liu is known as the invisible man for using painted-on camouflage to blend into the background of his photographs
    (via The Guardian)

    I’ve been to a lot of concerts, but not ones where I spent the night. But apparently people leave unbelievable messes, as seen here after the Reading Festival (Daily Mail).

  • The Twitter of Tomorrow (New Yorker): Most people noticed that Twitter started connecting the different tweets that make up a given conversation with a blue line. I noticed this and it totally confused me — I don’t like it because I don’t like Twitter messing with chronological order and the lines are actually super annoying — I’d rather they did conversations differently. I don’t care about reading other people’s conversations on my timelines most of the time. Ugh. I know, I hate change, but come on.
  • Two stories from NPR:
    • Compensation Funds For Victims Of Tragedy A ‘Small Solace’  This was a really good story I heard Sunday morning. It’s an interview with a man who hands out compensation to victims — and he talks about some of his experiences and what kind of job it is (as well as how difficult it is for victims/survivors/their families as well as himself).
    • The Voice Of Rocky And Natasha Earns An Emmy: A much happier story. I’ve always been a big fan of Rocky & Bullwinkle and it was really fun to hear this short interview with June Foray. I watched the show on Netflix, but it’s no longer streaming on there, but it is on Hulu now, so I can get my fix. And in case you were wondering, my favorite part of the show is Peabody’s Improbable History.
  • I emailed this to a bunch of people, but I’ll share it again here. A touching and pretty awesome story about a boy from Mongolia who used the internet and ended up attending MIT: The Boy Genius of Ulan Bator (NYT)
  • A new study of the snow leopard’s habitat across the Tibetan plateau has found that Tibetan Buddhist monasteries may be better equipped than formal preservation programmes to protect the endangered cats from poaching, retaliatory killing by farmers and other deadly perils. The key is their ability to extend their influence across administrative boundaries and maintain safe space for the animals.  (Tibetan monks and endangered cats via The Economist)
  • A review of The Grandmaster (which stars my favorite actor, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, and that I own and have watched, twice):  The Grandmaster: Returning to the Roots of Kung Fu (Tea Leaf Nation) I haven’t seen enough kung fu movies to review it adequately, but it doesn’t quite seem as good as the other Wong Kar Wai movies I’ve watched, though it is good. H and I saw it in Chicago (and got to see Tony do a Q&A in the theater(!) after the film) and I did notice what was missing (about 10 minutes were cut from the original, which is the version that I own). If you’re looking for a lot of kung fu action, this isn’t the movie you want. That being said, it’s a decent existential look at kung fu, which is what WKW is good at. I think it’s a good movie, I just think there’s a better movie in there, somewhere.

I know, this got kind of long, but whatever, I found a lot of good links. As a final note, here’s a commercial from Thailand that will make you cry (and then you can read more about it here, via The Diplomat):

Friday Links Are Back (and so am I)

I’m attempting to revive this blog. We’ll see how long this lasts!

  • One of my favorite authors, Seanan McGuire, reblogged this super cute comic about friendship. I’m lucky to have a couple of people (and my sister) who are my really good friends. I’d be lost without them (and they know who they are).
  • I’m still a fan of Big Bang and although I haven’t been watching the TV show Running Man, I’m excited about a few of the members (including my favorite, Daesung) being on the show again!

I know, it’s short. But here, have a video. It’s the newest MV from Drunken Tiger (Korean hiphop) and I absolutely love it:

Friday Links (aren’t feeling very newsworthy)

Today’s links are mostly a bunch of pictures/videos, but I suppose that’s the way things end up. I’ve been watching more Wimbledon than anything else, to be quite honest. But we’ll start with a few blog posts.

    • In a lot of geekish circles I read/travel in, gaming and women has been a pretty hot topic. There’s been a lot of drama about women playing video games, about who the audience of games are and so on. Skepchick has a really good article about the lack of women characters in World of Warcraft, but the article is more meta that just that. I recommend giving it a read.
    • Phil Plait, of Bad Astronomy always posts really good time-lapse videos (which I really love) and the other day he posted a great one by Tor Even Mathisen, filmed in northern Norway, it includes auroras and snow — the perfect thing to watch since SE Michigan is under a heat advisory at the moment.
    • I recently finished a great Korean drama (tv show) called Hero (2012/OCN). I plan to review the whole show (it’s only 9 episodes) eventually, but if anyone is interested in what it is I like, you can watch the whole show on Hulu. Also, be sure to check out the kdrama City Hunter on Netflix Instant, it’s also good.