Wednesday, March 18th, 2015


I’m Radioactive

When I was a kid, both of my parents smoked. That was before people really knew that the behavior could be deadly. In the NYT, Nick Bilton wonders whether it's possible that mobile phones and wearable devices are the new cigarettes? We don't know if we're doing any harm to ourselves, but doesn't it sort of intuitively seem like we probably are? Right now, I've got a Macbook on my lap, and an iPhone in my pocket. The wireless age has turned my private parts into a modern day Marie Curie.


Museum Terror

At least 19 people (mostly tourists) were killed and many more injured as gunmen raided Tunisia's Bardo National Museum. Buzzfeed has a collection of news links and reactions from around the world.


Bibi King

From a controversial speech to Congress to the abandonment of his support for a two-state solution to election day race-baiting, Benjamin Netanyahu pulled out all the stops to maintain the top spot following Israel's much-watched elections. And it worked.

+ Slate: This wasn't the first time Netanyahu won against long odds. Here's how he does it.

+ Jeffrey Goldberg: Netanyahu dodges the cross.


City City Bang Bang

Following a few others cities, the NYPD is deploying sensors throughout the city to pinpoint the exact location of gunshots. In some cities, as many as 75% of gunshots go unreported.

+ Related: Watch Texas law enforcement blow up 20,000 pounds of illegal fireworks.


The Tweet Cheat Sheet

"Counties where residents' tweets included words related to hostility, aggression, hate, and, fatigue ... had significantly higher rates of death from atherosclerotic heart disease, including heart attacks and strokes. Conversely, where people's tweets reflected more positive emotions and engagement, heart disease was less common." The New Yorker's Maria Konnikova on what your tweets say about you. You can test out your own tweets right here. (After seeing my results, I immediately ran out and bought a defibrillator.)

+ The ability to quickly collect and analyze individual and group data is interesting. But we're also getting better at learning about you by looking at the brain itself. This is how your brain morphs when you learn physics.


Alpha Males

"Some of the postings were of nude females that appeared to be passed out and nude or in other sexual or embarrassing positions. It appears from the photos provided that the individuals in the photos are not aware that the photos had been taken." Members of a Penn State fraternity could ultimately face criminal charges for the pictures shared on the wall of a (once) secret Facebook page. Why are frats so out of control these days? Whatever happened to just getting wasted and inventing weird hazing rituals to explore repressed sexual orientation confusion?

+ Swastikas were painted on a Jewish fraternity at Vanderbilt.


There Will Be Cord Blood

As Apple rolls deeper into the already crowded online TV space, it's time for those still using cable or satellite to ask if they can really save money by cutting the cord.

+ Try out Slate's cord cutting calculator.


Leaf Blowing

"It doesn't matter if your son or daughter brings a real pot leaf to school, or if he brings something that looks like a pot leaf -- okra, tomato, maple, buckeye, etc. If your kid calls it marijuana as a joke, or if another kid thinks it might be marijuana, that's grounds for expulsion." WaPo's Christopher Ingraham on the Virginia school that suspended an 11-year-old for one year over a leaf that wasn't marijuana. (And what would one do with a marijuana leaf anyway?)


Nature vs Au Naturel

In (the now safe for work) Playboy, Joe Donatelli asks several questions, including this one: Just how did our nation's 750 million acres of forests become overrun with adult magazines?


The Bottom of the News

In an interview in Dezeen, Dan Wieden traces his famous Just Do It Nike campaign back to Gary Gilmore standing in front of a Utah firing squad.

+ Quartz: Babies who breastfeed have higher IQs and get paid more as adults. (On the other hand,
NextDraft is 100% formula powered!)

+ Grantland's 30 for 30 short documentary on how college basketball's playoff system became March Madness.

+ Syndicated from Kottke: Tony Montana is selling his Scarface mansion. (There's room for you and all your little friends.)

+ AP was forced to issue a correction explaining that Robert Durst is not (Fred Durst) a former member of Limp Bizkit. (I'm not sure which one of them should be more offended.)