Freaking Out About Obama’s Suit, and More

At presser, Obama’s suit does the talkingBBC

“On Thursday afternoon Barack Obama delivered some stern words toward the Islamic State and Russia. This meant, of course, that Twitter was abuzz with talk about the beige suit the president was sporting.”

It’s Time for Celebrities To Apologize—For All Their Apologizing TIME

“We cannot continue to delude ourselves into thinking we value such conversations when what we really value is publicly flogging anyone who contributes something to the conversation that we find disagreeable. Or—brace yourselves—offensive. For a country that claims to want an open dialogue, and to treasure free speech, we sure seem to enjoy mob justice against people who give an opinion contrary to the one we are comfortable hearing. Instead of physically beating someone to death, we feign shock, outrage and emotional anguish, until the person (or more likely the publicist) breaks down and begs our forgiveness.”

How Social Media Silences DebateThe New York Times

“Humans are acutely attuned to the approval of others, constantly reading cues to judge whether people agree with them, the researchers said. Active social media users get many more of these cues — like status updates, news stories people choose to share and photos of how they spend their days — and so they become less likely to speak up.”

What Happens To The Human Brain If You Try To Watch Every ‘Simpsons’ EverFiveThirtyEight

“The impairment brought on by sleep deprivation in the early couple of days is often compared to impairment from alcohol consumption. Essentially, for the first few hours of sleep deprivation, the watcher would feel as if they’d thrown back a couple of Duff beers. A 1997 study with 40 participants published in the journal Nature (find links to all mentioned studies at the end of this piece) calculated that “each hour of wakefulness between 10 and 26 hours was equivalent to the performance decrement observed with a 0.004% rise in blood alcohol concentration” (BAC).”

Fantastically Wrong: The Angry, Enormous Eagle That Could Carry Off ElephantsWired

“You see, in our not too distant evolutionary past, early humans were hunted by eagles. We know this from a remarkable Australopithecus africanus specimen called the Taung Child, which palaeoanthropologist Lee Berger discovered had the same skull damage as modern monkeys killed by eagles.”

The Business of Fake Hollywood MoneyPriceonomics

When Priceonomics called Bilson to discuss his business, he painstakingly recalled the repercussions of the 2000 incident. The Secret Service came knocking on his door — first with a cease and desist ordering production of the fake currency be cut off, then again to confiscate all of his digital files and currency inventory as it returned from movie sets around the world. In all, they eradicated nearly $200 million in fake studio bills. At roughly an $8 real money cost per $10,000 stack of fake bills, the loss was steep for the company.

Being a Better Online ReaderThe New Yorker

“While the backgrounds of the writers varied, a theme began to emerge: the more reading moved online, the less students seemed to understand. There were the architects who wrote to her about students who relied so heavily on ready digital information that they were unprepared to address basic problems onsite. There were the neurosurgeons who worried about the “cut-and-paste chart mentality” that their students exhibited, missing crucial details because they failed to delve deeply enough into any one case. And there were, of course, the English teachers who lamented that no one wanted to read Henry James anymore.”

Photo courtesy of Travis Nep Smith

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