Solar power power, fully automated luxury communism, paintball apocalypses, old Macs, viral medical studies

This image was removed due to legal reasons.

1. Actual solar and wind power installations have far outpaced expert predictions about their growth.


"Over the past 15 years, a number of predictions – by the International Energy Agency, the US Energy Information Administration, and others – have been made about the future of renewable energy growth. Almost every one of these predictions has underestimated the scale of actual growth experienced by the wind and solar markets. Only the most aggressive growth projections, such as Greenpeace’s Energy [R]evolution scenarios, have been close to accurate."

2. The robot utopia for leftists: fully automated luxury communism.

"Located on the futurist left end of the political spectrum, fully automated luxury communism (FALC) aims to embrace automation to its fullest extent. The term may seem oxymoronic, but that’s part of the point: anything labeled luxury communism is going to be hard to ignore. 'There is a tendency in capitalism to automate labor, to turn things previously done by humans into automated functions,' says Aaron Bastani, co-founder of Novara Media. 'In recognition of that, then the only utopian demand can be for the full automation of everything and common ownership of that which is automated.'"

3. The homemade post-apocalyptic landscapes of paintball arenas.

"Play War is a photographic survey of homemade recreational battlefields across the United States, tucked into the everyday landscapes that surround a disheveled middle class. Photographing these spaces and these warriors, one finds a keen and disarmingly honest form of creativity. Here, players can test their efficacy, their agency, their ability to make a difference in the company of friends and strangers. As expressions of potential realities, these spaces present an intricate relief of the culture that created them. They are also deeply intertwined with the real needs of the military."

4. This guy plugged in a 1986 Mac into the modern web. It wasn't easy.

"Getting the Mac physically hooked to the network was a bigger challenge. The Mac Plus didn’t have an Ethernet port, and things like Wi-Fi were years from being invented when it was manufactured. A couple of companies made SCSI-to-Ethernet adapters about 15 years ago, but those were rare and expensive. I thought about the problem for a while, and it occurred to me that I could channel the early days again: I could use the serial port and PPP or SLIP to bridge to the outside world. Like dialup without the modem."


5. Viral dynamics change the information flows everything, even/especially for medical studies.

"I often wonder whether there is any value in reporting very early research. Journals now publish their findings, and the public seizes on them, but this wasn't always the case: journals were meant for peer-to-peer discussion, not mass consumption. Working in the current system, we reporters feed on press releases from journals and it's difficult to resist the siren call of flashy findings. We are incentivized to find novel things to write about, just as scientists and research institutions need to attract attention to their work. Patients, of course, want better medicines, better procedures — and hope."


On Fusion: “Ferguson: A Report From Occupied Territory,” a new documentary by Tim Pool, Orlando de Guzman, and Katina Parker.

Today's 1957 American English Usage Tip:

divers(e). The two words are the same, but differentiated in spelling, pronunciation, & sense, divers implying number, & diverse difference; cf. several & various, each of which has both senses without differentiation. In US, divers is now (usually) archaic or facetious.


The Credits

1. 2. | @aelkus 3. 4. | @dan_leslie 5.


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