Weekend Reading

  • Ditch the almond milk: why everything you know about sustainable eating is probably wrong
    In food and drink, we all want to do the right thing. We want to shop and eat sustainably. But, sometimes, it is easier said than done. Our willingness to jump on the latest eco-trends and unquestioningly accept reassuring labelling can lead to unintended consequences.
    Another week, another article about food. Time to get my own farm?

  • The iPhone’s autocorrect is a blessing and a curse. A longtime Apple designer explains why it’s so hard to teach software to read your mind.
    I have a confection to make. Ugh! No, I don’t want to bake a cake. Let me type that again. I have a confession to make. I worked for many years as a software developer at Apple and I invented touchscreen keyboard autocorrection for the original iPhone.
    Ducks sake, how hard can it be!

  • Probiotics labelled ‘quite useless’
    Their study is among the most detailed analyses of what happens when we consume probiotics. They are seen as healthy and good for the gut, but the results found they had little or no effect inside the body.
    Made up advertscienmenting isn’t real? WHO KNEW!

  • Illusion of control: Why the world is full of buttons that don’t work
    Written by Have you ever pressed the pedestrian button at a crosswalk and wondered if it really worked? Or bashed the “close door” button in an elevator, while suspecting that it may, in fact, have no effect whatsoever? You’re not alone, and you may be right.
    I love this stuff.

  • How Hevesh5 Builds Amazing Domino Chain Reactions
    19-year-old Lily Hevesh is obsessed with dominos. She spends hours upon hours building insanely intricate designs and chain reactions before knocking them down. Sound like a strange way to spend your time? Tell that to the nearly 2 million people who’ve subscribed to her YouTube Channel.

  • Dining fine: should you be charged £50 for missing a restaurant reservation?
    Customer no-shows are a huge problem for restaurants. Running at 5% to 20% per service, they cost the industry up to £16bn a year, according to the booking platform ResDiary.
    I say yes. If you don’t have common decency to cancel a booking then £50 should learn ya!

  • New Wireless Noise-Canceling Tech Is Faster Than the Speed of Sound
    A lightweight earpiece technology promises to meet or beat the performance of the best premium noise-canceling headphones without blocking the ear canal or covering people’s ears like heavy earmuffs.
    If you are reading this aloud, these headphones have already cancelled you out. Or something.

  • The Man Who Raised a Fist, 50 Years Later
    In the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, tucked between a gas station and what looks to be an abandoned warehouse, sits a former ceramics factory that now houses the studio of Glenn Kaino, a prominent conceptual artist.
    Still such a powerful image.

  • Why Egypt is building a brand new mega capital city
    Cranes are hovering over a new town in Egypt – but this is no mere overspill like Stevenage or Crawley. The new administrative capital, or NAC (so new it doesn’t even have a proper name), is mooted to be the biggest planned city ever.
    Whoa, this is crazy. Like re-building Glasgow.

  • There’s a name—and a laundry product—for that pile of lightly worn clothes in your bedroom
    Unilever knows a lot about how you do laundry—or don’t. For example, you know that pile of clothes draped over your bedroom chair? It’s the one made up of stuff you’ve worn once, that isn’t quite dirty yet.
    Monetise everything!!

  • Good Things Will Happen Keychain

    I do so wish I could afford to buy you ALL one of these.

  • Stress and Memory

    I have a bad memory, and this makes a lot of sense as to why.

  • The Copenhagen Letter: a set of principles for ethical technology
    The techlash has sparked a most welcome interest in the ethics of technology (there are hundreds of university courses on the subject!) and with it, a bustling cottage industry in the formulation and promulgation of “statements of principles” meant to guide technologists in their work.
    Only 20 years too late? But are we really expecting this to be followed?

  • The secret life of fungi: Ten fascinating facts
    They’re all around us, in the soil, our bodies and the air, but are often too small to be seen with the naked eye. They provide medicines and food but also wreak havoc by causing plant and animal diseases.
    They are everywhere right now, little squishy mushrooms. One day I’ll learn which ones I can pick.

  • I Caught My Husband On Tinder, And It Saved Our Marriage
    Marriage is freaking hard work. Anyone will tell you that, but what they don’t often tell you is that you could try to do everything the “right” way, and it will still be hard. My husband and I were DONE.
    More proof that life and relationships can evolve, even if it’s really hard to make it happen.

  • A Mind is Like A Parachute
    “A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open.”
    Zappa quote is my new life quote, I think.

  • A Warning From Europe: The Worst Is Yet to Come
    Polarization. Conspiracy theories. Attacks on the free press. An obsession with loyalty. Recent events in the United States follow a pattern Europeans know all too well. On December 31, 1999, we threw a party.
    It’s all so so awful. Stop the ride, I wanna get off.

  • The “beautiful mess” effect: other people view our vulnerability more positively than we do
    Admitting mistakes, seeking help, apologising first, confessing one’s romantic feelings – all these kind of situations involve intentional expressions of vulnerability, in which we may fear being rejected or being judged negatively, yet we grit our teeth and go ahead anyway.
    Essentially, we are all a lot less fucked up than we think…

  • He Saw Our Darkness
    Wait — that’s … Johnny Cash? On a U2 album? The crisp, deep baritone was unmistakable. I perked up my ears and heard Cash sing of a strange pilgrimage through a dystopian landscape of soulless cities and anomic, eight-lane highways, driven by dark religious longings.

  • The New Science of Seeing Around Corners
    While vacationing on the coast of Spain in 2012, the computer vision scientist Antonio Torralba noticed stray shadows on the wall of his hotel room that didn’t seem to have been cast by anything.
    Pretty sure I’ve linked to an article about guns that can shoot round corners. If the robots get wind of this we are screwed.

  • Are Audiobooks As Good For You As Reading? Here’s What Experts Say
    Even for people who love books, finding the opportunity to read can be a challenge. Many, then, rely on audiobooks, a convenient alternative to old-fashioned reading. You can listen to the latest bestseller while commuting or cleaning up the house.
    Why is this even a question?