Summary of “Deleting Your Online DNA Data Is Brutally Difficult”

Deleting my data there was simple: With a click, it disappeared from view.
I was told that the tools for deleting my data and sample from 23andMe’s records were “Not currently available.” I had to wait until May 25, when the company planned to roll out new privacy tools in compliance with Europe’s data-protection regulations, the GDPR. On the morning of May 25, 23andMe’s email arrived, heralding how easy it now was to delete your data.
There was another problem: Deleting my genetic information at my request is against federal law.
Fourteen frustrating customer-service emails later, I ascertained that the “Minimal amount” of information the company was required to keep on hand was, essentially, all of my raw genetic information.
Helix, which bills itself as the “App store” for DNA, processes the DNA sample and then shares the relevant data with other companies from which consumers purchase tests for interpretation.
This seemed to spell it out most clearly: When you delete your DNA information, you are mainly hiding your information from yourself.
Hazel, the researcher studying the privacy policies, said even if a company did offer to delete all your data, it’s unlikely that it could really purge your information from all the places it had already wound up.
In two studies in 2013, researchers showed it was possible to identify people from anonymous DNA information.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Legend of Nintendo”

Few people who play Nintendo games are likely to notice their fingerprints, though there are pious aficionados who vigilantly assess their work, bridling at signs of impurity like Tolstoy devotees picking over a new translation of War and Peace.
The only place to play Nintendo games was on Nintendo devices.
“If we think 20 years down the line, we may look back at the decision not to supply Nintendo games to smartphones and think that is the reason why the company is still here,” Satoru Iwata, then the company’s president, told the Wall Street Journal in 2013.
The following year, Niantic released Pokémon Go, a mobile game that thrust Nintendo back into the news.
More symptoms emerged in November, when the company released the NES Classic Edition, a miniaturized, rebooted version of the Nintendo Entertainment System, the console that had made the company a household name in Europe and America in the ’80s. The updated version was carefully calibrated to rekindle the latent passion of lapsed fans, with 30 of the most popular NES games built in.
At $59.99 per unit with no additional games, NES Classics were a low-margin item; much more important for the company was to whet the world’s appetite for Nintendo games in preparation for the Switch.
Nintendo has a few plans in motion: a partnership with Cygames Inc., a Japanese developer specializing in mobile games, and the launch in September of an online subscription service for the Switch, which will allow gamers to compete against one another and play a slate of retro titles.
In early June, Nintendo released a free online demo of the upcoming Mario Tennis Aces-a tournament game expected to be one of the first major attractions for its network service.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How to clean a ceiling fan in 60 seconds”

Cleaning ceiling fans is my most hated chore.
I usually end up with dust all over me and only slightly cleaner fan blades.
To clean your ceiling fan and remain dust-free, try creating a DIY cleaning tool using items you already own.
All it takes is a pair of barbecue tongs, some rags and four rubber bands.
First, roll each arm of the tongs with a rag and secure them with rubber bands.
Clamp the fan blade between the tong arms and drag the rags along the length of the blade.
With this technique, the top and bottom of the fan blade gets cleaned in one swipe.
The dust gets trapped in between the rags, so there’s no dust flying in your face.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Nate Robinson Battles Inner Demons in Quest for NBA Return”

“I’m sorry, I’m playing WOUNDED!” Robinson exclaims, referring to Paul not playing.
Rivers isn’t ruling out the possibility either, if Robinson can accept whatever role he’s given.
The first time Robinson touched an NBA basketball, in his debut against the Celtics in 2005, was on a quick steal.
Robinson fantasized about retiring in Chicago, but he says tensions with coach Tom Thibodeau escalated privately, as Robinson’s focus and maturity were once again issues.
“The NBA gave me my depression,” Robinson says.
“In therapy, Nate was trying to figure out what he was doing wrong.”I was trying to change,” Robinson says.
Robinson says current NBA players are held to different standards.
Once, on an open fast break with no defenders in sight, Robinson was surprised when a player on the opposing team rose from the bench and ran onto the hardwood to stop the break.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Should Phil Collins Be Celebrated or Vilified?”

The Assassination of Gianni Versace made me think about another ’10s prestige drama that used a Phil Collins song as an instrument of dread. In the Season 2 premiere of Mr. Robot, an executive from E Corp stands on a busy Manhattan sidewalk with two large duffel bags loaded with cash.
Like many people whose musical childhood education started with early ’80s Top 40 radio, Phil Collins was one of the first pop stars I ever loved.
Phil Collins was already doing that in the ’80s, rolling his latest solo album into the next Genesis album cycle, and then spinning several Genesis hits toward another blockbuster Phil Collins joint.
On a basic level, I connected to Phil Collins as I did to Mad magazine.
The end of Collins’s first marriage provided the songwriting grist that would eventually establish his monster solo career, which launched in 1981 with Face Value-known critically as the most accomplished Phil Collins record, and commercially as “The one with ‘In the Air Tonight.'” Collins later claimed that he made up the lyrics to “In the Air Tonight” on the spot.
Divorce albums became a cottage industry for Collins in the ’80s. His next solo LP, 1982’s Hello I Must Be Going!, includes several songs that Collins wrote after his ex-wife demanded more money in the wake of Face Value’s success, including the exquisite yacht rock of “I Cannot Believe It’s True.” There’s also the glowering “I Don’t Care Anymore,” a kind of son to “In the Air Tonight” that climaxes with Collins screaming at his invisible demons over enormous-sounding drum fills, less a moment of catharsis than a violent temper tantrum directed at a brick wall, a signature Phil Collins dramatic flourish.
How people feel about Phil Collins says at least as much about them as it does about him.
If we must compare Collins and Gabriel, I’d make a case for Collins being the superior singer.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Google Is Training Machines to Predict When a Patient Will Die”

The harrowing account of the unidentified woman’s death was published by Google in May in research highlighting the health-care potential of neural networks, a form of artificial intelligence software that’s particularly good at using data to automatically learn and improve.
Google had created a tool that could forecast a host of patient outcomes, including how long people may stay in hospitals, their odds of re-admission and chances they will soon die.
In contrast, Google’s approach, where machines learn to parse data on their own, “Can just leapfrog everything else,” said Vik Bajaj, a former executive at Verily, an Alphabet health-care arm, and managing director of investment firm Foresite Capital.
Another Google researcher said existing models miss obvious medical events, including whether a patient had prior surgery.
“Companies like Google and other tech giants are going to have a unique, almost monopolistic, ability to capitalize on all the data we generate,” said Andrew Burt, chief privacy officer for data company Immuta.
Google is treading carefully when it comes to patient information, particularly as public scrutiny over data-collection rises.
With the latest study, Google and its hospital partners insist their data is anonymous, secure and used with patient permission.
Even if consumers don’t take up wearable health trackers en masse, Google has plenty of other data wells to tap.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics Pioneer Norbert Wiener on Communication, Control, and the Morality of Our Machines – Brain Pickings”

Half a century before the golden age of algorithms and two decades before the birth of the Internet, the mathematician and philosopher Norbert Wiener tried to protect us from that then-hypothetical scenario in his immensely insightful and prescient 1950 book The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society – a book Wiener described as concerned with “The limits of communication within and among individuals,” which went on to influence generations of thinkers, creators, and entrepreneurs as wide-ranging as beloved author Kurt Vonnegut, anthropologist Mary Catherine Bateson, and virtual reality pioneer Jaron Lanier.
Wiener had coined the word cybernetics two years earlier, drawing on the Greek word for “Steersman” – kubernētēs, from which the word “Governor” is also derived – to describe “The scientific study of control and communication in the animal and the machine,” pioneering a new way of thinking about causal chains and how the feedback loop taking place within a system changes the system itself.
It is in my opinion best to avoid all question-begging epithets such as “Life,” “Soul,” “Vitalism,” and the like, and say merely in connection with machines that there is no reason why they may not resemble human beings in representing pockets of decreasing entropy in a framework in which the large entropy tends to increase.
Society can only be understood through a study of the messages and the communication facilities which belong to it; and that in the future development of these messages and communication facilities, messages between man and machines, between machines and man, and between machine and machine, are destined to play an ever-increasing part.
Just as entropy tends to increase spontaneously in a closed system, so information tends to decrease; just as entropy is a measure of disorder, so information is a measure of order.
Property rights in information suffer from the necessary disadvantage that a piece of information, in order to contribute to the general information of the community, must say something substantially different from the community’s previous common stock of information.
Whether we entrust our decisions to machines of metal, or to those machines of flesh and blood which are bureaus and vast laboratories and armies and corporations, we shall never receive the right answers to our questions unless we ask the right questions.
Nearly a century later, The Human Use of Human Beings remains an immensely insightful and increasingly relevant read. Complement it with the great cellist Pablo Casals on making our world worthy of its children, then revisit Thomas Merton’s beautiful letter to Rachel Carson about technology, wisdom, and the difficult art of civilizational self-awareness.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The most important skill nobody taught you”

While the book is mostly a mathematician’s case for choosing a life of faith and belief, the more curious thing about it is its clear and lucid ruminations on what it means to be human.
Today, more than ever, Pascal’s message rings true.
Beyond the current talk about privacy and data collection, there is perhaps an even more detrimental side-effect here.
The less comfortable you are with solitude, the more likely it is that you won’t know yourself.
You’ll spend even more time avoiding it to focus elsewhere.
The more the world advances, the more stimulation it will provide as an incentive for us to get outside of our own mind to engage with it.
We are so busy being distracted that we are forgetting to tend to ourselves, which is consequently making us feel more and more alone.
That’s ironic because it’s more important than most of the ones they do.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Nuclear Power Won’t Survive Without A Government Handout”

Once upon a time, if you were an American who didn’t like nuclear energy, you had to stage sit-ins and marches and chain yourself to various inanimate objects in hopes of closing the nation’s nuclear power plants.
The average age of a nuclear power plant in this country is 38 years old.
Without some type of public assistance, the nuclear industry is likely headed toward oblivion.
That’s not because America’s nuclear reactors are falling apart – they’re regularly inspected, and almost all of them have now gone through the process of renewing their original 40-year operating licenses for 20 more years, said David McIntyre, a public affairs officer at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Historically, nuclear power plants were expensive to build but could produce electricity more cheaply than fossil fuels, making them a favored source of low-cost electricity.
New nuclear power plants are looking even less fetching.
In a new study that has not yet been published, they found that the domestic U.S. market for nuclear power isn’t robust enough to justify the investments necessary to build a modular reactor industry.
While President Trump’s plan to tell utilities that they must buy nuclear power has received criticism as being an overreach of federal powers, states have offered subsidies to keep some nuclear power plants in business – and companies like Exelon, which owns 22 nuclear reactors across the country, have been happy to accept them.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How one man died so a whale might live”

“The whale was the future, the present and the past, all in one; the destiny of man as much as the destiny of another species.” Philip Hoare, The Whale.
“Whalers could literally sit on the shore, wait for a right whale to swim by, boat out there in a canoe or a ship, kill the animal, and then tow it back,” says Mark Baumgartner, biologist with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts and chair of the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium, a collaborative, data-sharing group of conservation organizations.
In North America, right whales were called the true whale, the whalebone whale, the 7ft bone whale and the rock-nose whale.
“For the modern world, the whale is a symbol of innocence in an age of threat,” writes Philip Hoare in his book The Whale.
Entangled whales may die of infection or starvation, and the stress of it all might even be causing females to delay pregnancy, which means not only more dead whales, but fewer calves too.
While Moira Brown and others were advocating to get shipping lanes moved in the Bay of Fundy, Mayo and his friend David Matilla were developing something much more immediate, and much more dangerous: disentanglement, a means of whale rescue that borrowed from centuries-old whaling techniques, and was pioneered in the 1970s by whale researcher Jon Lien at Memorial University in St John’s.
There had always been peaks and valleys in Fundy’s right whale population, but in 2010, researchers noticed fewer whales in their usual feeding grounds.
On 5 October last year, the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative released its right whale necropsy report, confirming what everyone already knew: the dead whales had been killed by ship strikes and fishing line.

The orginal article.