Wednesday, February 10th, 2016


Let’s Play Doctor

"The software is so sophisticated that it corrects a surgeon's shaking hand. The zoomed-in camera view takes some getting used to, but for working in a small area, it's great." Doctors are already using robots to perform surgeries from across the room. Performing those surgeries from across the world could become the new normal in a few years. And maybe it's only a matter of time before the robots are performing some surgeries on their own. That could mean fewer errors, but many more legal and ethical questions. If nothing else, at least the bedside manner should improve. From Popular Mechanics: The Surgeon Will Skype You Now.

+ "In this setup, the autonomous driving software itself would be the vehicle's legal 'driver'; none of the human passengers would require a driving licence." You can get rid of the steering wheel and brake pedals now. Google's AI can take it from here.


A Shove Supreme

"This is unexpected but does not change the growing global momentum to shift away from fossil fuels. The US administration played an important role in the Paris deal and it is clear they will want to continue with their implementation of the clean energy plan." The international community is trying to put the best spin on a Supreme Court decision that has halted implementations of rules at the center of President Obama's climate change plans.


Status No

New Hampshire voters dealt a serious blow to the establishment of both parties last night. Trump won big. Bernie shellacked Hillary. From The Atlantic: From Flint to New Hampshire, an angry American public is determined to challenge the status quo.

+ "Something that had been stuck was shaken ajar last night." David Frum argues that democracy won last night in New Hampshire where everything that was supposed to be silenced is suddenly being said.

+ There are many factors at work and we need to remind ourselves that this is still early in the race. But the Trump win was shocking and impressive. And I think it has something to do with apologies. Let's Talk About P*ssy

+ "The only thing he does know, and he's right about, is that we're being ripped off; he says that constantly; and I guess he and I are the only two that really say that." Donald Trump on the one thing that he and Bernie have in common.

+ NPR: 5 Things That Explain The Results.

+ Chris Christie has drop out of the race. And Carly Fiorina has also suspended her campaign.


This Old Man

"Say someone came up to you selling a dietary supplement -- a pill that you take once a day -- that could boost your energy, improve your body's ability to repair its DNA, and keep you healthier as you get older." You'd probably be dubious. And maybe you should be. But it's worth noting that this supplement is being backed by some of the scientific community's preeminent aging researches.


Let’s Talk About Our Felines

"Do they experience any emotion when helping a partner? It may as well be, but we don't know." Vox takes you inside a decades-long quest for an answer to a very interesting question: Do animals feel empathy? (It might be a total coincidence, but every time someone unsubscribes from NextDraft, my cat pukes up a hairball.)

+ A new study suggests that horses can recognize human emotion. (Whoa, Whoa, Whoa Feelings...)


Can You Hear Me Now?

More and more, we are interacting with our devices using our own voices. But it turns out some of those devices don't do particularly well with accents and slang. Will we all be forced to talk like Siri? From The Guardian: Y'all have a Texas accent? Siri (and the world) might be slowly killing it.


Reporting From Mexico

"After armed men snatched her from her home, Mexican journalist Anabel Flores Salazar ended up dead, her body discarded along a highway." Salazar is the latest in growing list of journalists who have lost their lives trying to report on the story of the endless violence associated with the drug war.

+ Last week, U.S. agents intercepted a shipment of cocaine that was worth more than $170 million. "Last year, they intercepted 213,000 pounds of cocaine." In other words, these interceptions aren't making much of a difference.


Steph Infection

The other night during a Warrior game, one of their players had a wide open lay-up. Instead of shooting, he passed the ball to a teammate who was standing just beyond the three point line from where he took (and made) the shot. For any other team playing in any other era, this move is pure basketball sacrilege. But the way the Warriors play is heavily impacted by two factors. Steph Curry. And analytics. Why the NBA Loves -- and Fears—Stephen Curry.


Timeline is Everything

FastCo has a report on everything you need to know about Twitter's new timeline tweaks. Any tweak to Twitter tradition is immediately met with outrage by its users. But ultimately, extreme Twitter users will accept any changes to the service. We've alienated and ignored our friends and family. This is all we have left.


Bottom of the News

"An orangutan named Tango relaxes in the chute above us as we pass under. She used to do judo in the Tang drink commercials before starring in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back." And Tango is not alone. Here's the Miami New Times with the story of a very special kind of zoo: Michael Jackson's Pet Chimp, Bubbles, Is Living Out His Twilight Years In Florida.

+ A Girl Scout chose what seems like a really obvious place to sell her cookies: outside of a pot dispensary. They sold well.

+ Is the drinking straw the most wasteful product in America?

+ Because your doubts about fast food are not already strong enough, Burger King is getting into hot dogs.