What I'm reading 10/12-10/19

2015-10-18

Out of the Darkness - ACLU

  1. "In between the sessions, the conditions designed to assault Abu Zubaydah's senses persisted. He remained in solitary confinement throughout the period, naked, hooded, on a liquid diet, and chained in varying stress positions designed to cause him pain and deprive him of sleep. Loud rock music blared constantly in his blinding white-lit cell."

Slide-Show Poetry: Closing Down the Bungalow - Andy Friedman

  1. "We never swam in the lake. My mother cut her toe on something in it one day, in the summer of 1956."

Who's the alpha male now, bitches? - Andrew O'Hagan

  1. "There has been an epidemic in gun violence since 2000, and mass shootings in public places are clearly on the increase. According to the FBI, there have been close to two hundred such incidents in the last 15 years, resulting in the murder of 486 people and the wounding of 557 as of September last year."
  2. "Someone, perhaps not a million miles from you, whose name we don't yet know but whose face is camera-ready, whose conscience is clearing before the fact, is preparing a biography of his mentality in advance of a shooting massacre."

Should bike helmets be compulsory? Lessons from Seattle and Amsterdam - Renate van der Zee

  1. "In Amsterdam, adults don't wear helmets while riding city bikes – they don't even consider it an option. Helmets are mainly worn by tourists and expats, whom the Dutch regard with bemusement, even ridicule."

Convicted by Code - Rebecca Wexler

  1. "Today, closed, proprietary software can put you in prison or even on death row. And in most U.S. jurisdictions you still wouldn’t have the right to inspect it."
  2. "Because eliminating errors from code is so hard, experts have endorsed openness to public scrutiny as the surest way to keep software secure."

Meetings Are Toxic - Getting Real, 37signals

  1. "Every minute you avoid spending in a meeting is a minute you can get real work done instead."

Programmer Burn-in - Anonymous

  1. "Last year I had trouble enjoying things I had enjoyed my whole life. I felt that I had this "burned-in" addiction to complexity that made it very difficult to talk about normal human being things, or spend time on things that didn't seem very complex or mentally challenging."

"A marvelous mind" Hannah Arendt's FBI file - Conor Skelding

  1. "'She is a small, rotund, stoop shouldered woman with a crew-like haircut, masculine voice and a marvelous mind. She is described as being very positive, dominating, enthusiastic, and an eloquent speaker, and as being about fifty years of age.'"

VW - Robert C. Martin

  1. "I think that argument is even more asinine than Michael Horn's. They knew. And if they didn't know, they should have known. They had a responsibility to know."

If You’re Not Paranoid, You’re Crazy - Walter Kirn

  1. "Its employees dealt with us in an upbeat, tightly scripted manner that appeared to stem from their awareness of several cameras angled toward the service counter. The situation reminded me that the ferreting-out of secrets is merely one purpose of surveillance; it also disciplines, inhibits, robbing interactions of spontaneity and turning them into self-conscious performances."
  2. "Evidently, some callous algorithm was betting against my pending marriage and offering me an early exit."

The Price Is Right - Emily Nussbaum

  1. "And yet there's something in Trow's manifesto that I find myself craving these days: that rude resistance to being sold to, the insistence that there is, after all, such a thing as selling out."

Not a Perfect Fit syndrome and Poisonous Internal Solutions - Matt Freeman

  1. "You return to work on Monday and realized that time and space is not yet truly understood, your nightmares actually did happen, you wonder if this is related to watching the new Interstellar film."

Living in the Age of Software Fuckery - Bryan Edds

  1. "But in all seriousness, we can start by telling the truth about the situation, to others and especially ourselves. At the very least, it should help to lessen the shock of the reality to people entering our field. The people most affected by this shock are the honest young people who are least suspicious of this type of chicanery. In other words, the people we lose the earliest are the people we may need the most."

Kill Our Meeting Culture - Sebastian Thrun

  1. "The fix is: abandon all recurring meetings. I am serious. All!"

The self is moral - Nina Strohminger

  1. "However, new research by myself and the psychologists Larisa Heiphetz and Liane Young at Boston College has found that the single most important mental trait in judging self-identity is one's deeply held moral convictions. We are not only concerned with moral character when constructing an identity for others, but when doing so for ourselves."
  2. "People are not so much concerned with memory as with memory's ability to connect us to others and our capacity for social action."