Tuesday, January 4th, 2022


Blackberry in a Coalmine

This message will not get to those who need it the most. As of today, the classic Blackberry phones have been bricked. It's over. The tiny, tactile qwerty keys that launched a revolution have, like so many other once familiar things (including my potential), been rendered obsolete by screens. For now, Blackberry, the edible item, is still functional. But with the metaverse coming and blockchain gaining steam, one worries that fruit's days are numbered as well. Pour one out for the Blackberry. We've reached the age where we're nostalgic not for the pre-technology dominated days, but rather for the days when we used other brands of technology. Thankfully, my Coleco Electronic Quarterback is still working.


Me, Myself, and I-95

There are no traffic jams you want to be in. But there's one kind of traffic jam in particular that you really want to avoid. The kind of traffic jam that makes national news. Damn this traffic jam: People Have Been Stuck For Almost 24 Hours In The Virginia Snow.

+ Some people have left their cars to walk their dogs on the interstate and let their kids have a break outside. (You know it's bad when people tell their kids to go play on the highway.)


Your First Million

On one hand, there's probably some delayed reporting due to the holidays. On the other hand, it seems like everyone is getting it. The US just hit 1 million daily Covid cases. We'll likely see a rise from there. But predictions about this variant being much less deadly are holding and the vaccinations seem to be doing their job. We probably need to stop focusing stats on cases and start focusing on ICU visits.

+ Different countries, different reactions. China has put a second city into total lockdown after just three asymptomatic Covid cases were discovered.

+ Israel records its first case of patient with COVID and flu at same time. It's called Flurona. (Oy Vey. This is multitasking in the pandemic era.)


Plastic Surgin’

"Demand for plastic has been as manufactured as plastics themselves. Society is awash in throwaway plastics not because of the logic of desire but because of the logic of history and of integrated industrial systems." The Atlantic: How Bad Are Plastics, Really? (It turns out they are a big deal when it comes to climate change.)


Little Caesars

"The study suggested that people place far too much credence in the initial bits of information they encounter when learning something. 'A little learning,' as the poet Alexander Pope wrote, 'is a dangerous thing.'" NYT (Gift Article): Skeptics Say, ‘Do Your Own Research.' It's Not That Simple. (You're better off researching other people's research.)


New Clearer

"A decade after the Fukushima nuclear accident set back nuclear power's prospects worldwide, the outlook may finally be brightening for three reasons: the urgency of meeting increasingly ambitious climate goals, significant advances in nuclear technology, and national security concerns about China's and Russia's growing leadership in nuclear power." Jason Bordoff: 3 Reasons Nuclear Power Has Returned to the Energy Debate. Nuclear might need a rebranding.


Fraudian Slip

"Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, who sought to revolutionize healthcare with a device she claimed could make medical diagnoses using just a fingerprick of blood, has been found guilty of engaging in a multimillion-dollar scheme to defraud investors by making misleading and false statements about the technology's capabilities." She was guilty of defrauding investors but not patients. She should have defrauded an American election. There's no penalty for that.


Elon Wheels

"Many international brands have distanced themselves from allegations of abuses in Xinjiang, following reports of mass internment, forced labor, and dwindling birth rates among the region's Muslim minorities. But with the grand opening of its new dealership in the capital Urumqi, Tesla has become a rare Western brand to publicly embrace the controversial region and echo Beijing's narrative painting Xinjiang as an exotic tourist destination." Tesla Just Opened a Showroom in China's Xinjiang. I'll never understand Elon Musk. He's the richest dude on the planet. Tesla has beat the supply chain challenges. And still, he's addicted to saying and doing the wrong thing. How can Tesla do this? Why don't Tesla owners care?


AB Test

"It has been a remarkable fall from grace for a man once considered one of the league's feel-good stories. ​​Brown had issues before he made it to the pros— he was expelled from Florida International University after a run-in with campus security, though that issue, like so many with Brown, was complicated — but since 2016, he has gone from being a mostly agreeable all-timer to a team cancer. What happened?" Antonio Brown and the Specter of CTE.

+ "There are ways to help troubled people reenter their chosen profession. What the Bucs tried was a shortcut from the beginning. It worked on the field, but only on the field." SI: There Was Never Any Redemption Story in Antonio Brown. (The NFL is about Receptions not Redemptions.)


Bottom of the News

"We need more studies to tell us why. But for young people, computer games, increasing social media use, video games—something is replacing that time." People Have Been Having Less Sex—whether They're Teenagers or 40-Somethings. (I feel seen.)

+ California twins born 15 minutes apart in two different years.

+ Nirvana Nevermind baby cover artwork lawsuit dismissed.