Summary of “Coffee Waste Is Now Fetching a 480% Premium Over Coffee Itself”

Aida Batlle grows coffee on her family’s farm in the hills surrounding El Salvador’s Santa Ana Volcano.
More than a decade later, coffee husk-or, as it’s better known, cascara-is having a moment.
Competitors such as Stumptown Coffee Roasters and Blue Bottle Coffee are adding it to their menus, too, as tea and a carbonated drink.
“Starbucks is great at taking things and introducing it to the masses,” says Michael Schultz, co-founder and chief executive officer of Coffee & Tea Bar Holdings LLC, which operates two Fairgrounds Coffee & Tea locations in Chicago and is preparing to open others in Minneapolis and Los Angeles.
“People are becoming more and more aware.” Fairgrounds recently completed its final testing for a cascara-laced specialty drink that will be priced at about $5. Thanks to demand from these chains, the coffee husk now often fetches a higher price than the bean itself does.
Batlle says she gets $7 for a pound of cascara, while the average price for coffee hovers around $1.20, the lowest in about two years, because of an oversupply of arabica beans.
Cascara contains little caffeine and has a less assertive taste than coffee.
Batlle’s volume of cascara sales have increased to “Thousands of pounds a year,” and she says she has no fear that the commodity’s growing popularity will end up cannibalizing coffee.

The orginal article.

Summary of “‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’: Inside the Director Swap, Re-Shoots & More – Variety”

With mere weeks left on the shooting schedule, producer Kathleen Kennedy fired directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller and hired veteran Ron Howard to right the ship.
Howard shot about 70% of “Solo,” thus earning him sole director credit on the movie, with Lord and Miller receiving executive producer acknowledgments.
“Solo” is the fourth film in Disney’s revamped franchise machine to creatively malfunction: Director Josh Trank exited a still-unmade Boba Fett spinoff in 2015; Oscar-nominated filmmaker Tony Gilroy was brought in to save 2016’s “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” when director Gareth Edwards’ efforts missed the mark; and “Jurassic World” helmer Colin Trevorrow – who was originally hired to direct the next “Star Wars” movie, “Episode IX,” in 2019 – was shown the door following clashes over the script.
Howard’s work ultimately comprises 70% of the finished film.
A crew member who worked on the film under both Lord-Miller and Howard, but declined to be identified because he was not authorized to disclose the information, says Lord and Miller drew Kennedy’s ire for stretching days out with experimentation.
“You can totally see the love affair because Howard seemed super invested in how the film looked. Lord and Miller didn’t seem too fussed with that aspect, really.”
Howard worked with the Kasdans to further refine the script.
In conceiving his “Solo,” Howard thought back to his own films, like “Grand Theft Auto” and its muscle-car cool, and “Rush” and its story of racing driver James Hunt’s connection to the car that would make him a champion.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What to do on 15-, 30-, and 60-minute breaks to boost productivity”

If you’re not seeing the benefits of a break, perhaps you’re not using them correctly, says Carson Tate, author of Work Simply: Embracing the Power of Your Personal Productivity Style.
Used properly, taking a break is like hitting a reset button.
“We’re not as prone to self interrupt, such as taking Facebook or email breaks. We’re more passionate and connected to work.”
“It doesn’t matter, anything to physically get the blood moving. A five-minute break can be more effective than a 30-minute break if you incorporate movement.”
“You can do these activities in two minutes or 20. Little breaks like this keep your mind energized, and they can lead to those ‘aha!’ moments of creative insight.”
A study published in Harvard Business Review found that “Green micro breaks” improve attention span and performance.
Decluttering your workspace can be a good break, says Thomas.
Breaks are also impactful if there’s a connection with another human being, says Tate.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Beginner’s Guide to Index Funds”

The difference between an index fund and an ETF. How to buy your first index fund.
Index funds typically have a much lower expense ratio – the percentage of assets paid to the mutual fund company – than typical mutual funds.
Vanguard’s Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares have an expense ratio of just 0.04%. Schwab’s Total Stock Market Index has an expense ratio of 0.03%. Conversely, actively managed funds have an average expense ratio of 0.69%. Removing the psychology of investing.
Buying an index fund, or building a portfolio of index funds, can help mitigate the psychological hurdles individual investors face.
Index funds can have much lower taxes than traditional mutual funds.
An ETF is merely a subset of index funds that trade more like equities than like mutual funds.
Bogle might’ve invented the index fund at Vanguard, but there are now many companies offering index mutual funds and ETFs to investors.
The key to investing in index funds is to understand the index your investing in.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Force Is Strong With This ‘Star Wars’ Subculture”

The MPC entrants-a small subset of the 2,000 to 3,000 people whom community organizers estimate are still seriously playing the game in person or online-included a cohort of experienced competitors who’ve stuck with the game since its heyday, as well as a contingent of less seasoned participants whom the lifers label “NARPs,” or “New and returning players.” Some NARPs have only recently discovered the game, while others played it decades ago and later let their participation subside before being lured back by resurgent Star Wars fandom or interest in the game’s ongoing evolution.
“Our entire team of over 100 employees knew many players and collectors from the community. In fact, many of our team had been hired from [the] community. As best we could, we needed to protect not only the thousands of dollars many of our players had invested, but more importantly, the place Star Wars CCG had in their hearts.”
In addition to lending the Players Committee the legitimacy of being officially sanctioned by Decipher, the company met with the advocates to discuss the details of the handover, shared the names and email addresses of everyone who’d inquired about positions on the Players Committee, helped the committee set up a website, and, most meaningfully, donated $1 million of Star Wars CCG inventory-with royalties to Lucasfilm prepaid-that the committee could distribute as prizes.
Some Star Wars CCG players speculate that Decipher’s donation was a means of purchasing players’ loyalty to the brand to juice sales of the company’s now-defunct Star Trek and Lord of the Rings card games, which were then still in print, but Holland denies any ulterior motives.
Decipher’s largesse makes more sense once one witnesses the affection for the game that persists 17 years after the company pulled out and left Star Wars CCG players to govern themselves.
“Location” cards, which also lean either light or dark, determine where in the Star Wars universe the action takes place, which may favor one player over the other; players compete for control of those locations by taking turns using cards that represent Star Wars characters, vehicles, and weapons.
Upsets aren’t unheard of in Star Wars CCG, but given the edge that skilled players possess, Zinn, among others, expresses skepticism that anyone other than a highly seeded entrant would win the weekend event.
In 2014-the same year that Disney decanonized the expanded universe that predated its purchase of the Star Wars franchise-the Players Committee decided to “Reset” its library of virtual cards, which had ballooned to roughly 1,100 and included some early creations that weren’t as well-implemented as later additions.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Darius Foroux on making time for useful work”

How does he do it? With a time management technique he read about in college that he has since expanded on and made his own.
During my final exams, I read about the Pomodoro technique in some magazine I picked up at school.
I think that’s what made readers follow my work.
What have some of the most memorable questions been?One reader asked me why I always start my podcast with “How’s it going?” He said that listeners can’t answer that question.
If you run into a good article, you don’t immediately have to read it.
Save the article and read it when you make time for reading.
What have you been discovering, saving, or spending time with recently in Pocket?I’ve been reading a lot about investing and investors.
If you had the chance to escape and read all of your current Pocket saves where would you go to do it?Curaçao.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Deadly Chinese Fentanyl Is Creating a New Era of Drug Kingpins”

Yan is the first Chinese national the U.S. has ever added to its “Consolidated priority organization target” list of individuals thought to command the world’s most prolific drug-trafficking and money-laundering networks.
Rosenstein expressed optimism that his Chinese counterparts would hold Yan accountable.
If Yan doesn’t resemble a stereotypical drug lord, neither is fentanyl your average drug.
The Drug Enforcement Administration might have never found Yan if not for a traffic stop in Ocean Springs, Mississippi on March 20, 2013.
Fentanyl wasn’t on offer, but agents kept following the digital trails that have made it easier for people like Muhammad and Yan to enter the global drug trade and for investigators to hunt them down.
They went undercover as distributors, prompting Yan to send them seven shipments containing kilograms of fentanyl analogues and other synthetics.
Yan labeled the packages as clothing, buttons, radios and cleaning supplies, and when Gibbons claimed that one had been confiscated by customs, Yan sent another for free.
By the time of the indictment, investigators had tied Yan to at least two Chinese factories equipped to produce deadly chemical compounds by the ton.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How the Math Men Overthrew the Mad Men”

They’ve now been eclipsed by Math Men-the engineers and data scientists whose province is machines, algorithms, pureed data, and artificial intelligence.
To appreciate how alike their aims are, sit in an agency or client marketing meeting and you will hear wails about Facebook and Google’s “Walled garden,” their unwillingness to share data on their users.
This preoccupation with Big Data is also revealed by the trend in the advertising-agency business to have the media agency, not the creative Mad Men team, occupy the prime seat in pitches to clients, because it’s the media agency that harvests the data to help advertising clients better aim at potential consumers.
Prowling his London office in jeans, Keith Weed, who oversees marketing and communications for Unilever, one of the world’s largest advertisers, described how mobile phones have elevated data as a marketing tool.
Suddenly, governments in the U.S. are almost as alive to privacy dangers as those in Western Europe, confronting Facebook by asking how the political-data company Cambridge Analytica, employed by Donald Trump’s Presidential campaign, was able to snatch personal data from eighty-seven million individual Facebook profiles.
Advertiser confidence in Facebook was further jolted later in 2016, when it was revealed that the Math Men at Facebook overestimated the average time viewers spent watching video by up to eighty per cent.
In 2017, Math Men took another beating when news broke that Google’s YouTube and Facebook’s machines were inserting friendly ads on unfriendly platforms, including racist sites and porn sites.
The magazine editorialized, in May, 2017, that governments must better police the five digital giants-Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft-because data were “The oil of the digital era”: “Old ways of thinking about competition, devised in the era of oil, look outdated in what has come to be called the ‘data economy.'” Inevitably, an abundance of data alters the nature of competition, allowing companies to benefit from network effects, with users multiplying and companies amassing wealth to swallow potential competitors.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Dangerous Is It When A Mother Sleeps With Her Baby?”

How Dangerous Is It When A Mother Sleeps With Her Baby? : Goats and Soda Many doctors in the U.S. say the practice puts an infant at risk of sleep-related death.
Back in the early 1990s, Notre Dame’s McKenna decided to do what seemed almost impossible: Figure out just what happens at night when a mom sleeps with a baby.
“We measured heart rate, breathing patterns, chest movement, body temperatures, brain waves – even the carbon dioxide levels between the moms’ and babies’ faces.” They even had infrared cameras to watch how the babies moved around at night.
The baby also hears the mom’s breathing, which has a rhythm similar to the sounds the baby heard in the womb.
So her baby’s risk of SIDS is tiny, even when Nichols sleeps with the baby.
The baby is more likely to get struck by lightning in her lifetime than die of SIDS, even when Nichols sleeps with her.
A premature baby with a younger mother and whose parents smoke and drink starts out with a moderate risk of SIDS – about 1 in 1,500.
They talk about what increases the risk, such as drug use and alcohol use, and they give families a so-called Moses basket so that the family can bring the baby into the bed, but the baby is protected from a rollover by this separate sleeping container.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Ignore the hype over big tech. Its products are mostly useless”

“It turns out that a big part of getting things done is making a phone call,” he said.
“The amazing thing is, our Assistant can actually understand the nuances of conversation.”
Whatever its basis in fact, this stuff casts people and corporations as godlike visionaries, and then provides a puffed-up context for the stuff the big tech companies shout about week in, week out: stuff we either don’t need or, worse, which threatens some of the basic aspects of everyday civilisation.
I have Apple’s Siri “Assistant” on my phone, but I barely use it and neither do lots of other people: between 2016 and 2017, its use in the US is thought to have dropped by 15%. Yet some people fall in love with these things.
Among the great mountain of writing at the heart of the current so-called “Techlash” is a great book entitled Radical Technologies, by the former tech insider Adam Greenfield.
Amazing and sometimes life-enhancing innovations, I dare say, are being worked on by tech geniuses across the world.
In fields such as driverless transport, virtual reality and blockchain technology, new inventions may eventually transform our lives, and fulfil the cliched big-tech promise about making the world a better place.
There is a basic fact about the future the figureheads of big tech too often forget: that what it will look like is actually up to us, not them.

The orginal article.