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Tuesday links

  • Uber and Lyft are not just disrupting longstanding “taxi control” in New York City. They’re disrupting lenders who have profited from the insane medallion fees.
  • Ha ha ha. You know all those well-heeled people who are always spouting about how everybody should pay higher taxes? Well guess what happens when they’re invited to volunteer more of their own dough?
  • This planet’s a crazy place. When it’s time to leave, is it feasible to terraform Mars?
  • Of all the people who “invented the Internet” Claude Shannon may have the best claim. A new book looks at one of history’s forgotten geniuses.
  • And in the realm of geniuses who won’t let us forget them, John McAfee vows to eat his own … well, you’ll have to go read. It’s not printable in a PG-rated blog.
  • O.J. Simpson: still living in Cloud Cuckoo Land, where he’s going to get right out of prison and go on playing golf and being loved, according to one of his friends. This is exactly the attitude Simpson took after being found not guilty of murder.
  • Yet another case of police body cams being conveniently turned off. (The woman the cops slaughtered was “guilty” of calling 911 to report a suspected crime. Her killer is currently enjoying the standard paid vacation.)
  • Just seven days after being released from prison, he skips a job interview to save a life.
  • After declaring victory over ISIS Iraq returns to being paradise on earth. 😉

14 Comments

  1. rochesterveteran
    rochesterveteran July 18, 2017 7:25 am

    Uber and Lyft are not just disrupting longstanding “taxi control” in New York City. They’re disrupting lenders who have profited from the insane medallion fees.

    The rest of New York State was finally “allowed” to have Uber and Lyft this past June 29.

    Uber, Lyft to get June 29 start date in NY

    I have the Uber app on my iPhone but haven’t used it yet. My daughter drives for Uber.

    Back in 2015, my wife and I took our first trip to Colorado to see our son and daughter in law. Unfortunately, the flight out of Rochester to Baltimore, where we were supposed to get our connecting flight to Denver, got cancelled because of bad weather on Baltimore. It was 11pm by the time the flight was cancelled and although we got booked for another flight, it wasn’t until the next day. We got dropped off at the airport and had no vehicle there and it was late enough that I did not want to bother anybody to pick us up and take us home, so we took a cab. It’s 11 miles from the airport to our home and we got charged $41 for that cab ride! I most certainly welcome Uber and Lyft to Upstate NY! The cab companies are rip-offs!

  2. Comrade X
    Comrade X July 18, 2017 8:26 am

    Methinks psychopaths have no conscience if that be what OJ be.

    But one thing for sure there are times in my life I will always remember where I was and what I was doing and one of those times was OJ’s bronco ride, I was with good friends so I can thank OJ for that memory at least.

  3. Adam
    Adam July 18, 2017 9:47 am

    RE: Iraq returns to being paradise on earth.

    Thanks to the US invasion to start it off. Countless Iraqi lives saved. Antiquities preserved. Thousands of US military returned home healthy and whole. Islamic extremism extinguished for eternity. Iraq, Iran, and Syria have entered an age of prosperity and freedom unseen in human history. Peace reigns in the Middle East. 😉

  4. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 18, 2017 10:35 am

    Mars colony is probably much too big a step in the foreseeable future, but teraforming it is probably not going to be possible for a very long time, if ever. First step… after the revolution, of course, would be an underground colony on the moon. Get the bugs worked out there, and do some serious mining of minerals there and in the asteroids, as well as building the ships needed to go to Mars and beyond. No need to have large “colony ships” escape the massive gravity of the Earth then. The colonies on Mars will also have to be completely underground for a very long time, and it is possible Mars might never have an Earth like atmosphere, but the potential for even the underground colonies is wonderful to imagine.

    I did imagine it… I wrote a story called, “I Remember Earth.”

  5. R.L.Wurdack
    R.L.Wurdack July 18, 2017 11:58 am

    With the rapid advances in robotics the vision in Robinson’s “”Red/Green/Blue Mars”” becomes imaginable. It will only be plausible, however, if we manage to hold our present train wreck together.

  6. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 18, 2017 1:22 pm

    Why in the world would “we” want to preserve any part of this train wreck?

    Getting RID of the train wreck, and opening all life to the reality of individual liberty seems to me to be the ONLY hope of continued existence as human beings, let alone going to Mars or developing colonies anywhere in space. “Current technology” is obviously inadequate, which is why ever new technology must be found if humans are to survive anywhere. No idea who “Robinson” is, but his imagination or vision is only one of millions.

  7. jed
    jed July 18, 2017 3:41 pm

    > The Claude Shannon book review mentioned real AI in the next 10-50 years. Now we are at least one butt plug iPhone case closer (maybe NSFW):

    And, here’s another case to go with it.

  8. R.L.Wurdack
    R.L.Wurdack July 19, 2017 7:17 am

    ML –

    If things go off the rails like they appear to be going (in keeping with the ‘train wreck’ analogy), humanity will be busy trying to amass the technology to grow turnips.

    Robinson is just a well informed SF writer, but Zubrin is a scientist and he believes we have the tech to do an enduring Mars colony today and makes a good case for it in his books.

  9. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 19, 2017 9:05 am

    I’m all for the train wreck, myself. The greater the wreck, the better, actually. The more of the insane socialism, etc. that gets burned up in the harsh reality of life, the better chance the survivors will have to rebuild their lives along the lines of freedom and prosperity. The whole reason we’ve come to this pass today is the crazy idea that we can “kick the can down the road” and avoid any real unpleasantness because we can write letters to congress critters and hold courthouse step demonstrations. Oh, and “vote,” of course.

    But none of the technology will simply vanish. The survivors will be able to pick up what they want and need along the way, sooner or later. You can’t unring a bell. No amount of apocalypse will require the re-invention of the wheel, fire, and probably not even the committee meeting.

    Humans, when not consumed by aggression or brain damage, are irrepressible inventors and manipulators of their lives and environment – for good and bad, remember. The inventions and manipulations continue, no matter what else is going on, and will continue as long as the human race endures. Some will reach Mars, and some the stars… if they really want to.

  10. Claire
    Claire July 19, 2017 9:23 am

    “But none of the technology will simply vanish. The survivors will be able to pick up what they want and need along the way, sooner or later. You can’t unring a bell.”

    But you can unring the bell in the case of sophisticated technologies and/or the knowledge to produce and use them. Microchips, robotics, and nanotechnologies (for instance) aren’t the wheel or fire. They’re delicate things requiring an equally delicate infrastructure, an infrastructure made up of both brainpower and fragile equipment/processes.

    You can also have a circumstance in which technology is blamed for causing troubles and ends up being destroyed, banned, or hemmed in by taboos.

    We could have a tech holocaust that would be the equivalent of the burning of the library at Alexandria and cause even more intellectual and cultural devastation.

    I agree humans are irrepressible inventors. But without that sophisticated and fragile infrastructure, tech isn’t just something that can be picked up and tinkered with. Maybe by a few individuals. But not even by then if tech is religiously suppressed.

  11. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 19, 2017 9:50 am

    Guess we’ll have to see what happens. 🙂 It is up to those who want the technology to make sure it isn’t destroyed; to preserve it and improve on it. No suppression or religion control is absolute. The bans, destruction and taboos are always ugly and harmful, but they never have and never will stop the progress of those who won’t knuckle under to them.

    People can do anything they wish… if they want to badly enough. And if they don’t want individual liberty badly enough… they will never have it. No guarantees at all. 🙂 All the what ifs are quite possible, but none can actually stop the process completely or for long… unless we give up and stop trying because the what ifs might happen.

    But no, you cannot unring a bell. It may fall quiet, but the vibration of the ring will spread out as long as there is a particle of energy behind it. Need to guard and ring the bell more often, rather than wring our hands over the efforts of some (or many) to destroy the bell. Maybe even move the bell to Mars. 🙂

  12. Jim B.
    Jim B. July 19, 2017 12:09 pm

    Terraforming Mars will take centuries if not thousands of years to do. One of the main problems as I see it, is that Mars had an atmosphere but lost it due to lack of mass and gravity to hold onto it. And that’s not even accounting for the solar wind ripping the air off.

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