this week i

updated our medicare advantage and prescription drug coverage plan availability for twenty twenty four.  still taking pictures of people at rest

attended bigsurv23 (survey methodologists in the changing room trying on off-the-rack cyborg parts) at harry potter u.  two algorithmic failures: [lack of representivity / inaccuracy of labels].  on ai learning from ai: the extent to which we get recursivity. gpt: generative pre-trained transformers. 

learned pronounced geezus.  more charmin' than a roll of toilet paper

listened to nancy cordova describe exit poll accuracy then rafael correa's gov't raid of her wapor-affiliate office (computer systems still not returned)

enjoyed aleia clark fobia's burden, benefit, consent, and control findings: slightly more than half think the government shares data, slightly less than half think the government should share data.  no yes for me.  can ai pass the marshmallow test?  decisions, decisions, quotes i heard, a good tattoo

a computer learns if it improves its performance on a task over time based on experience

if you connect the dots, you are overfitting

the entire thing is just a predict the next word algorithm

captchas are training automated driving algorithms

we put a person on the moon before we put wheels on your luggage

the first word in openai is a lie

john snow, but not the guy from game of thrones

ice cream sales are correlated with drownings

k-means only works with numeric variables, k-prototypes work with categorical variables

census tract may not be the way they think about life

these two yellow ones?  or are they green?  i'm colorblind

single-letter words don't exist in the german language

there's some latin american band called census, so you can't just use the word

the elephant in the room is data quality

my data are bigger than your data

our total survey error comfort zone

title first wish it was just books.  a cat with a prehensile tail would be unstoppable


awaited hamburgesa after conference. downstairs tv on a 5 second delay from the upstairs screen, ecuadorian fans downstairs crossed fingers for penalty kick, heard upstairs cheers, looked toward sky, celebrated, watched penalty kick block, celebrated once more.  ¡campeonas! ¡hijo de puta!



(1) the defeat of cleopatra and mark antony..quickly led to a fivefold increase in the shipping heading to india

deposits of rice, dal, coconuts, coriander, tamarind, and huge pots containing several thousand black peppercorns from india show that the merchants who arrived in first-century egypt preferred their own deliciously spicy cuisine to that of egypt, much as their successors still do today

customs taxes on the red sea trade with india, persia, and ethiopia may have generated as much as one third of the income of the roman exchequer.  the principal source for this striking figure is the muziris papyrus, a remarkable document of unknown provenance that was probably found in the celebrated trash dumps of the egyptian town of oxyrhynchus - the city of the sharp-nosed fish

the ptolemies had established the facilitate the import of elephants for warfare

"pepper" and "ginger" are both loanwords from tamil 

(2) we could afford it if we designed our welfare state to expand opportunity and not guard fortunes

poverty did not increase during the worst economic downturn in nearly a century

franklin 1935 called welfare a drug

in 1980 the american psychiatric association made "dependent personality disorder" an official diagnostic category

compiling spending on social insurance, means-tested programs, tax benefits, and financial aid for higher education, the average household in the bottom 20 percent of the income distribution receives roughly $25,733 in government benefits a year, while the average household in the top 20 percent receives about $35,363

americans who rely on the most invisible programs (namely tax breaks) are the least likely to believe that the government has given them a leg up

"taxes should hurt," president reagan famously said


(3) piranesi's view of the pronaos of the temple of concordia - majestic columns above, drunken wastrels below

 scenes that would startle geometry


(4) the dangers of the sundarbans

"on land a tiger, in the water a crocodile" (dangay bagh, jale kumir), a much livelier version of our "between a rock and a hard place"

should any person fail to appreciate your poem in the proper manner, my tigers will slay every member of his lineage

even as a tree, she weeps

we should really call arabic numerals indian numerals


(5) neither the vessels nor the rituals surrounding the iced tea ceremony are as scrutinized and codified as their japanese counterparts

i wonder where is all my relation
friendship to all - and every nation

ghostly kaolin

concatination..from the latin catena (chain)

many highly regarded japanese pots were apparently made by enslaved people..forcibly removed from korea to japan around 1600, after the so-called imjin war

idiosyncrasy does not necessarily constitute rebellion 


(6) johann wolfgang von goethe

he queened it in weimar.  he withdrew as much as he could - as behind a veil, ergo highly visible - from his political capacities, wrote, developed his theories on color, on plant growth, on aesthetics.  he had a bone named after him

when a man is old, he should do more than when he was young

(7) c&o canal's supreme court justice

the c&o canal national historical park remains to this day the only national park dedicated to a single individual

in 1969, he wrote an article for playboy denouncing the corps under the title "the public be damned."  mincing no words, he declared, "the corps has no conservation, no ecological standards....and when it finishes, america the beautiful is doomed"

(8) if a slave auction doesn't make you uncomfortable, please seek help

charleston, where omar ibn said was first enslaved

i had a mother once

giddens captures the language barrier with a clever device: sometimes characters sing gibberish, their scat vocals and echolalia signifying incomprehension

(9) the economic radicalism of the civil war

i will go back to washington, and issue notes for circulation; for it is certain that the war must go on until the rebellion is put down, if we have to put out paper until it takes a thousand dollars to buy breakfast

the nation owed around $65 million at the time of abraham lincoln's election - a sum roughly equivalent to one year's federal expenditure.  by the time the war was over, the united states would owe nearly $3 billion, and its annual expenditure would be close to half that sum.."the yankees did not whip us in the field.  we were whipped in the treasury department"

confederate officials didn't need to conquer the north, but simply to exhaust its resolve

the british approach to abolition had been to preserve enslavers' wealth by expanding the national debt; the union approach was to destroy the fictive $2.7 billion of white southern wealth and to liberate four million human beings who had been brutally commodified

(10) one of six people in africa

although more than 93 million nigerians registered to vote, only about 25 million cast ballots

the largest country in the world that they know the least about

the median age today is seventeen, half that of the us

prior to 1820, four times as many people were brought across the atlantic from africa as from europe

nigeria - inspired by the name of the niger river, which may have berber origins ("river of rivers") but whose echo of latin suggests "a land of the blacks"

the second-largest slave society around 1800, surpassed only by the united states

british marching into heavily forested areas and employing a tactic of "clearing volleys" with their maxim guns, which they fired indiscriminately wherever their route took them

(11) futarchy is a repackaging of nineteenth-century political systems that allocated votes proportionately to wealth

buterin thought the system could replace judges

imagine a blockchain containing your medical records or electoral rolls hard-forking and one of those forks hard-forking again

crowdsourced hedge fund

ethereum's attempt to invent economic democracy through the blockchain showed yet again that constitutional legitimacy is difficult to secure and can lead to political schisms

"whales" can rewrite the rules

"neoliberal converting the distinctly political character, meaning, and operation of democracy's constituent elements into economic ones."  it reconfigures elements of democracy, including "vocabularies, principles of justice, political cultures, habits of citizenship, practices of rule, and above all, democratic imaginaries," into market calculations

peter thiel..has written that he believes freedom and democracy are incompatible

proof of work is environmentally disastrous thanks to the huge amount of electricity expended doing redundant calculations, and proof of stake rewards and increases inequality

there is nothing to salvage here