Summary of “How Artificial Intelligence Is Changing Science”

“The approach is to say, ‘I think I know what the underlying physical laws are that give rise to everything that I see in the system.’ So I have a recipe for star formation, I have a recipe for how dark matter behaves, and so on. I put all of my hypotheses in there, and I let the simulation run. And then I ask: Does that look like reality?” What he’s done with generative modeling, he said, is “In some sense, exactly the opposite of a simulation. We don’t know anything; we don’t want to assume anything. We want the data itself to tell us what might be going on.”
The apparent success of generative modeling in a study like this obviously doesn’t mean that astronomers and graduate students have been made redundant – but it appears to represent a shift in the degree to which learning about astrophysical objects and processes can be achieved by an artificial system that has little more at its electronic fingertips than a vast pool of data.
“I just think we as a community are becoming far more sophisticated about how we use the data. In particular, we are getting much better at comparing data to data. But in my view, my work is still squarely in the observational mode.”
These systems can do all the tedious grunt work, he said, leaving you “To do the cool, interesting science on your own.”
Whether Schawinski is right in claiming that he’s found a “Third way” of doing science, or whether, as Hogg says, it’s merely traditional observation and data analysis “On steroids,” it’s clear AI is changing the flavor of scientific discovery, and it’s certainly accelerating it.
Perhaps most controversial is the question of how much information can be gleaned from data alone – a pressing question in the age of stupendously large piles of it.
In The Book of Why, the computer scientist Judea Pearl and the science writer Dana Mackenzie assert that data are “Profoundly dumb.” Questions about causality “Can never be answered from data alone,” they write.
“Anytime you see a paper or a study that analyzes the data in a model-free way, you can be certain that the output of the study will merely summarize, and perhaps transform, but not interpret the data.” Schawinski sympathizes with Pearl’s position, but he described the idea of working with “Data alone” as “a bit of a straw man.” He’s never claimed to deduce cause and effect that way, he said.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Interview: John Mulaney on ‘SNL,’ Broadway, Dave Becky”

We may never know whether or not John Mulaney wrote for Saturday Night Live, but one thing’s for sure: He’s one of the nicest and funniest comedians working today.
John Mulaney February 28, 2019 People are still tweeting at me trying to argue that Mulaney definitely wrote for SNL, but I’m not seeing any new arguments or proof, so I think it’s time to move on.
The headline I used for the post was “Hey SNL, Please Hire This John Mulaney Kid.” And on Facebook, there were comments from a couple guys saying, “Um, he wrote for SNL,” or, “You don’t even know that?” – “Megh, come on, you should know this.” So I just kind of Oh, that’s great.
You know the “John Mulaney as” meme where people post screenshots from your specials related to a certain theme? Or just the general idea of being turned into a reaction GIF? What is it like to experience that happening to you? Is it weird to see yourself meme-ified?It sounds like mummified, which is I’ve never heard it used that way.
In terms of the using quotes thing, I saw one of them that was Shakespeare plays, and I was embarrassed because I didn’t know enough about the plays to get how the quotes of mine matched up.
You know, it’s a wonderful song, but something about the lyrics and the makeup of the audience it was definitely a unique thing.
I’m not sure if you know Natalie Walker, but she’s a very funny comedian who tweeted recently that she wants you and Rachel Bloom to host the Tonys together.
You know, look, I don’t know if anyone’s offering it to us, but We’ll take it, and we only have a small rider.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How America’s food giants swallowed the family farms”

Nick Dearden of Global Justice Now warned: “It is really an animal welfare issue here. If UK farmers want to compete against American imports, they will have to lower their standards or go out of business.” His words would come as no surprise to Rosemary Partridge, who farms in Sac County, western Iowa.
A decade later, the farm crisis hit as overproduction, the US grain embargo against the Soviet Union and high interest rates dramatically drove up costs and debt for family farms.
As the medium-sized family farms retreated, the businesses they helped support disappeared.
Tim Gibbons of Missouri Rural Crisis Center, a support group for family farmers set up during the 1980s farm crisis, says the cycle of economic shocks has blended with government policies to create a “Monopolisation of the livestock industry, where a few multinational corporations control a vast majority of the livestock”.
“The system has been set up for the benefit of the factory farm corporations and their shareholders at the expense of family farmers, the real people, our environment, our food system,” he adds.
The biggest pig farmer in the country is Virginia-based Smithfield Foods, which has nearly a million sows in the US. Iowa Select Farms has one of the fastest-growing Cafo operations in the country, with 800 farms spread through half of the counties in Iowa.
“They’ll hire somebody to sit in a little office somewhere and run that stuff off the computer and farm the land that way. Now what you’ve done is you have lost the innate knowledge of how to grow food and raise animals. You’ve lost a whole generation of it, probably two. Now we are going to rely on a few corporations to decide who is going to eat and who isn’t. We’re one generation away from that picture right now.”
In Williams, Schutt says he’s seeing a community of owners becoming workers: “It’s going to be like Russia with serfs. If you want to work on a farm, you’ll have to work for them. We’ll give you a job, but you’re going to be working on our terms. We control everything. Small farms can’t survive.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “How ‘Creativity’ Became a Capitalist Buzzword”

An even more recent development is the notion that creativity is a trait of capitalist markets.
In the history of the word “Creative,” there are actually two decisive rifts: this initial one between the divine and the human creation suggested here, and then, once creativity became a human trait, a division between its aesthetic and productive forms.
Productive creativity is not art but labor, and thus rarely earns the title of creativity at all; this is the supposedly unimaginative labor of the manual worker or the farmer and the often feminized work of social reproduction.
The popularity of “Creativity” as an economic value in English can be traced to two major sources-Joseph Schumpeter, 20th-century economist and theorist of “Creative destruction,” and Richard Florida, the University of Toronto scholar whose book, The Rise of the Creative Class, became one of the most celebrated and influential urban policy texts of the early 2000s.
Its members include scientists and engineers, architects and artists, musicians and teachers-anyone, in short, “Whose economic function is to create new ideas, new technology, and new creative content.” The creative class shares certain tastes and preferences, like nonconformity, an appreciation for merit, a desire for social diversity, and an appetite for “Serendipity,” the chance encounter facilitated by urban life.
Politicians in various postindustrial cities in the global north became eager customers of the consultancy spawned by the success of The Rise of The Creative Class.
The rise of the so-called creative class is not a heroes-and-villains plot of businessmen corrupting creativity.
These meanings of artistry have evolved over the years in complex ways, but the one that circulates in the economic use of creativity dates to the origins of the word “Creativity” in the late 19th century.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Two Things to Do After Every Meeting”

Steve Jobs insisted that every item on a meeting agenda have a designated person responsible for that task and any follow-up work that happened.
Attendees are often immediately running to another meeting where their attention shifts to a new set of issues.
To make sure productivity doesn’t slow after you walk out of the room, do two things after and in between meetings: Quickly send out clear and concise meeting notes and follow up on the commitments made.
Sharing a summary of the meeting is an important part of working on engagement.
Here’s what works: Distribute concise, clear notes about the meeting.
Historically, minutes were like court transcriptions, capturing everything that was said during the meeting.
Two years later, nothing had happened and the president was convinced it was because the people in that meeting didn’t have the right skills.
If he’d checked in with the group two weeks after the meeting, then followed up every few weeks until the project was up and running, it likely would’ve been a different story.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Staying Productive While on a Business Trip Takes Planning”

You can’t just wake-up in the morning of and decide that you’re going to go on a business trip.
Put your business in good hands: Appoint an emergency contact in case a fire needs to be put out while you’re away.
Take advantage of your commute: While you’re en route, create a list of your priorities and review your schedule so that you know how you’re going to productively spend your time.
While you can purchase WIFI on the plane, I think it’s a waste of time and money because the spotty quality.
Business trips are an opportunity to spark creativity while you’re outside your comfort zone.
If you were at home a family member or employee just might interrupt you while you’re focused on deep work.
How can I possibly maintain my current workload while on the road? The fact is, you can’t put in a full workday while away.
This way you aren’t freaking-out about everything that needs to get done either while on the trip or when you return.

The orginal article.

Summary of “A Journey Into the Radical Art of Brain Injury Survivors”

Then there’s the art studio, packed with painters, sculptors, drawers, photographers and crafters.
His mother tells me he didn’t really paint or draw as a child, and he never goes to exhibitions or consumes great works of art.
A week earlier, over lunch, Chris had said to me, “You can’t look at contemporary art without acknowledging the art made by the disabled.” It went over my head at the time, but had rattled around my mind ever since.
Prinzhorn, a former art history and philosophy student, developed a passion for the project, and by the time he left the hospital in 1921 the collection contained more than 5,000 works by 450 patients.
He published his research in his first book, titled The Art of the Mentally Ill. While the world of science largely scoffed at the book, the avant-garde art world became obsessed.
“The art world doesn’t even relate to people anymore. Most people don’t even engage with it. It’s removed itself from the purpose which it had all our lives. What we see when see people like Jason or Alfred Wallis is art that has a purpose. It hits us directly because it’s honest and has an integrity. But also it shows that art has a deeper function in society for all of us, and we’re just removed from it. Making a mark is an act of self. It’s an assertion of the individual. It is defiant. It’s almost the last thing you can have.”
“In Britain,” says Steene, “Part of the idea of the value of art is about the person who makes the work. We are celebrity and personality-obsessed. The thought that someone who has a brain injury might create beautiful art just isn’t widely accepted here. There is a judgment made about the individual at that point. This country has a lot of hierarchical issues and there is a pressure to change, but I think it will be a long time before we see one of the artists we’re talking about having their work in the Tate Modern.”
It’s just after lunch and “Riders On the Storm” by The Doors is rumbling from the speaker in the art studio as I watch Jason work on a set of small paintings: three 10cm x 10cm canvas boards.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Beyoncé’s Publicist”

Noel-Schure still cares about whether the stringer from the local Ohio paper makes it through the doors of that stadium, and her work is a reminder that stars like Beyoncé’s larger-than-life status is, in part, a summation of meticulously tended to details.
Without the support of a major label, Noel-Schure had to quickly learn how to bring in clients and give them 360-degree support, but she had a vote of confidence from Beyoncé and Prince, who kept their business with her after she left Sony.Today, Noel-Schure represents a host of veterans like LeAnn Rimes, as well as shining newcomers like Chloe x Halle and Ingrid.
At first, Noel-Schure struggled to pitch Destiny’s Child, a fact that rankled Matthew Knowles, Beyoncé’s father and longtime manager.
At the time, it was rare for a major-label pop group to write their own songs, and Noel-Schure knew that Beyoncé’s budding talent as a songwriter would help distinguish Destiny’s Child.
” For Noel-Schure and her biggest client, something like Beyoncé’s 2018 Coachella performance is a powerful rebuttal to the criticism: A profound, emotionally excavating body of work that stands for itself.
Noel-Schure had traveled to her beloved Grenada for a friend’s wedding, but had a few pressing work concerns to juggle.
Beyoncé’s paradigm-shifting visual album, “Lemonade,” was due to be surprise released on HBO in less than a week, and Noel-Schure was on guard in case the news leaked.
Noel-Schure practices what Beyoncé preaches-commitment to family and personal enrichment in addition to a devotion to her work.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Child poverty report: food, housing, and money, not work requirements, work best”

The result of pressure from California Democratic Representatives Barbara Lee and Lucille Roybal-Allard, the provision called for the National Academy of Sciences to convene a group of experts to produce “a nonpartisan, evidence-based report that would provide its assessment of the most effective means for reducing child poverty by half in the next 10 years.”
A “Work-based package,” which increases the Earned Income Tax Credit, makes the Child Care Tax Credit fully refundable, boosts the minimum wage, and scales up WorkAdvance, a training program “In which program staff work closely with employers to place disadvantaged individuals with moderate job skills into training programs for specific sectors that have a strong demand for local workers.” This plan does the least to reduce child poverty out of the four options, cutting it from 12.6 percent to 10.2 percent, and lifting 1.8 million kids out of poverty.
That’s a reduction in child poverty of about a third: much better than the work-focused plan, but not enough to meet the goal of halving child poverty.
A “Universal supports and work poverty reduction package,” which includes a bigger increase in the EITC than the first three packages, includes a minimum wage increase to $10.25 per hour and makes the Child Tax Credit refundable, offers various anti-poverty programs to legal immigrants who are currently barred, and, most importantly, includes a child allowance of $2,700 per year, as well as a $1,200 per year publicly funded minimum child support payment for single parents entitled to child support from their former partner.
Promoting work doesn’t get you much of anywhere One thing the report suggests is that we’re hitting the limits of how much we can reduce poverty through work alone.
“There is insufficient evidence to identify mandatory work policies that would reliably reduce child poverty, and it appears that work requirements are at least as likely to increase as to decrease poverty,” they conclude.
You need to give people money A few years ago, another group of eminent poverty researchers – including Duncan, the NAS committee chair, and fellow NAS committee members Smeeding and Garfinkel, as well as fellow poverty experts Jane Waldfogel, Kathryn Edin, Luke Shaefer, David Harris, Sophie Collyer, Christopher Wimer, and Hirokazu Yoshikawa – offered a stirring call for a large child allowance, of $3,000 to $3,600 per year, paid out monthly and perhaps in greater amounts for young children, in a paper for the Russell Sage Foundation.
The single policy that does more than any other to reduce poverty is a $2,700 child allowance, which would single-handedly cut child poverty by a third.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Emma Thompson’s letter to Skydance: Why I can’t work for John Lasseter”

When Skydance Media Chief Executive David Ellison announced this year that he was hiring John Lasseter to head Skydance Animation, many in and outside the company were shocked and deeply unhappy.
Only months earlier, Lasseter had ended his relationship with Pixar – where he had worked since the early ’80s – and parent company Disney after multiple allegations of inappropriate behavior and the creation of a frat house-like work environment.
After announcing the hire, Ellison sent a long email to staff, noting that Lasseter was contractually obligated to behave professionally, and convened a series of town halls in which Lasseter apologized for past behavior and asked to be given the chance to prove himself to his new staff.
Mireille Soria, president of Paramount Animation, with which Skydance has a distribution deal, took the highly unusual step of meeting with female employees to tell them that they could decline to work with Lasseter.
Much has been said about giving John Lasseter a “Second chance.” But he is presumably being paid millions of dollars to receive that second chance.
If John Lasseter started his own company, then every employee would have been given the opportunity to choose whether or not to give him a second chance.
Skydance has revealed that no women received settlements from Pixar or Disney as a result of being harassed by John Lasseter.
Given all the abuse that’s been heaped on women who have come forward to make accusations against powerful men, do we really think that no settlements means that there was no harassment or no hostile work environment? Are we supposed to feel comforted that women who feel that their careers were derailed by working for Lasseter DIDN’T receive money?

The orginal article.