Summary of “The Futures of the Major TV Networks Are Coming Into Focus”

The Television Critics Association’s summer press tour, currently underway in Los Angeles, often serves as a helpful litmus test for the networks and the streamers that produce the medium’s best programming.
The TCA tours-which happen twice a year-congregate the biggest networks and the critics and reporters that cover them into one place.
It’s mutually beneficial: the press get access to the minds behind the programming they cover, and the networks in turn can use any press to churn the hype machine for the programs that merit it.
Below is a handy guide for assessing how the biggest networks and streamers are positioning themselves for 2018 and beyond.
While AMC isn’t operating as it was during its Prestige TV heyday, back when Breaking Bad and Mad Men were at the height of their powers, the network is rapidly on the rise again, becoming more than a Walking Dead content mill.
Netflix supplanted HBO’s stranglehold on the Emmys, up to a point-for the first time in nearly 20 years, HBO didn’t garner the most Emmy nominations from a single network.
It’s not a lot, but what the network does have coming is undeniably exciting.
Facebook Watch is even newer-still attempting to conceptualize its role in an ever-growing pile of networks and programming.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Dig Up Dinosaurs at These Family-Friendly Paleontology Sites”

Looking for a fun, educational summer activity the whole family can get in on? How about digging up actual dinosaur bones and other fossils! Here are a few of the best dig sites across the country that welcome newcomers who want to learn about paleontology.
You’re able to learn more about what you’re digging up, and you do so in an ethical fashion so researchers can actually use what you find.
Intended for ages 8 through 12 with parental supervision, $20 or less per person.
For ages 16 and older, $800 for five days of field work and lodging.
Adult programs available through Earthwatch Institute.
This isn’t all that’s out there, though-not even close! If you’ve got some money, time, and body that’s in decent shape, you can volunteer to participate in almost any paleontological dig.
Do some research on your local colleges with paleontology programs, or contact your local natural history museum to see what they have planned.
You can learn more about the digs listed above at the link below.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The United States could have Nordic-style welfare programs, too”

Left-leaning Americans should be thrilled that a new subgenre of political commentary has emerged aimed at explaining why the United States simply can’t brook Nordic-style welfare programs.
The reasons adduced to argue that the United States has no hope of establishing programs like the ones enjoyed by Europe’s social democracies are more disturbing than commonly credited.
In a 2014 Slate essay calling for an end to the United States’ Nordic fantasies, Emily Tamkin cited the “Homogeneity of the Nordic countries, on which, one could argue, their stability and equality hinges.” This would prove to be a running theme.
The United States is a liberal democracy, and a unique one at that: While many of Europe’s liberal democracies were formed with a distinctive nationalist bent – that is, as nation-states, or countries composed primarily of single, self-governing ethnic groups – the United States was never any such thing.
Romantic nationalists argued that a country built on a contract – the theoretical premise that one can be an American as long as it’s in his or her best interest, and no longer if it isn’t – simply couldn’t be as successful as states united by language, tradition, an intrinsic sense of shared destiny, and so on.
On the above view, the United States was always doomed to merely marginal achievements where justice, equality and freedom are concerned.
This is where the thinking of romantic nationalists dovetails with today’s Scandi-skeptics: If the United States has a poverty rate about triple that of Denmark, or a child poverty rate about eight times higher, or millions more lacking access to health insurance, each camp would propose, it’s at least partially due to the kind of country we are.
The United States might have to chart a different political and sociocultural path to the universal programs Scandinavians enjoy, but if some zeal for justice and equality is there, I’m not sure why we can’t aspire to cultivate more.

The orginal article.

Summary of “A.I. and Big Data Could Power a New War on Poverty”

Second, we can bring what is known as differentiated education – based on the idea that students master skills in different ways and at different speeds – to every student in the country.
A 2013 study by the National Institutes of Health found that nearly 40 percent of medical students held a strong preference for one mode of learning: Some were listeners; others were visual learners; still others learned best by doing.
Even within the context of a standardized curriculum, A.I. “Tutors” can home in on and correct for each student’s weaknesses, adapt coursework to his or her learning style and keep the student engaged.
Today’s dominant type of A.I., also known as machine learning, permits computer programs to become more accurate – to learn, if you will – as they absorb data and correlate it with known examples from other data sets.
Big data sets can now be harnessed to better predict which programs help certain people at a given time and to quickly assess whether programs are having the desired effect.
As for the poisonous effect of ideology on the debate over public assistance: Big data promises something closer to an unbiased, ideology-free evaluation of the effectiveness of these social programs.
Before the commission expired in September 2017, it used government data to evaluate the effectiveness of government policy and made recommendations based on its findings.
This provides one more indication of the promise of A.I. and big data in the service of positive, purposeful public good.

The orginal article.