Under 18 U.S.C. §2071, an individual who “willfully and unlawfully” conceals, removes or destroys a federal record can be fined and imprisoned for up to three years. The statute also applies to attempts to conceal, remove, or destroy a federal record.

The “right to roam” movement in England seeks to reclaim common rights to access, use and enjoy both private and public land, since citizens only have access to 8% of their nation’s land currently.

Coffee houses are one of the earliest examples of ‘Third Places,’ a term popularized by urban sociologist Raymond Oldenberg, who described them as “public places on neutral ground where people can gather and interact. In contrast to first places (home) and second places (work), Third Places allow people to put aside their concerns and simply enjoy the company and conversation around them.” More than that, Third Places are essential to community-building because they bring people together within a shared space who may otherwise remain in more disparate social circles.

This part 2 of the Secret History of Polaroid and Edwin Land. Read part 1 for context. Kodak and Polaroid, the two most famous camera companies of the 20th century, had a great partnership for 20+ years. Then in an inexplicable turnabout Kodak decided to destroy Polaroid’s business. To this day, every story of why Kodak went to war with Polaroid is wrong. The real reason can be found in the highly classified world of overhead reconnaissance satellites.
Here’s the real story.

All tabular knowledge can be stored in a single long plain text file. The only syntax characters needed are spaces and newlines. This has many advantages over existing binary storage formats. Using the method below, a very long scroll could be made containing all tabular scientific knowledge in a computable form.

So, instead of focusing on the pixels, we think of design decisions as how we intentionally use gestalt principles to communicate meaning. And like Tufte’s data-ink ratio compares the strictly necessary ink to the total ink used to print a chart, we can calculate a gestalt ratio which compares the strictly necessary design decisions to the total decisions used in a design. This is design density.

“The Financial Times reported earlier this year that a McKinsey-led think tank, the Urban China Initiative, produced a report….The report, titled, The Trend and Impact of World Technological Revolution and Industrial Transformation, made scores of recommendations to enhance the military and industrial capabilities of the Chinese government.

In the last few weeks there has been a sea change in crypto regulation:

1. Bitcoin spot…

Worse yet, you’re not actually expected to use any of it directly. Instead you’re also supposed to follow the developments of framework abstractions that are layered on top of the foundation specialities, at least doubling the number of complex fields a web dev has to follow and understand, right out of the gate.
This is immense – an expectation so mind-boggling that we need to acknowledge just how remarkable it is that each of us has managed as well as we have.

Google “doesn’t have a choice right now,” Thomas Monteiro, a Google analyst at Investing.com, said in an interview. “Companies need to move really fast, even if that includes skipping a few steps along the way. The user experience will just have to catch up.”

This brings us to the close of our brief tour through the various energy intensive industries. More or less extreme changes to these processes are indicated by the emergence of extremely cheap solar power. These changes present infinite possibilities for disruption of the large, risk averse, growth averse incumbents. The incipient emergence of solar cheaper than fossil fuels is probably the last opportunity to reshuffle the deck in terms of ownership of these various means of production, and represents a unified, industry wide investment thesis with unlimited capacity for outsize returns in response to technical innovation.

With Minnesota having repealed its anti-municipal broadband laws, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance says that 16 states still restrict the building of municipal networks. The Minnesota change “is a significant win for the people of Minnesota and highlights a positive trend—states are dropping misguided barriers to deploying public broadband as examples of successful community-owned networks proliferate across the country,” said Gigi Sohn, executive director of the American Association for Public Broadband (AAPB), which represents community-owned broadband networks and co-ops. There are about 650 public broadband networks in the US, Sohn said. “While 16 states still restrict these networks in various ways, we’re confident this number will continue to decrease as more communities demand the freedom to choose the network that best serves their residents,” she said.

Essays on programming I think about a lot
JULY 2020. Every so often I read an essay that I end up thinking about, and citing in conversation, over and over again. Here’s my index of all the ones of those I can remember! I’ll try to keep it up to date as I think of more.

The inaccessible and abandoned islands of New York – in pictures

USDoD is a high-profile player in this field, closely associated with “Pompompurin”, the operator of the first iteration of data leak site BreachForums. USDoD is said to have plans to set up a successor to the second iteration of BreachForums which was recently seized by law enforcement. Releasing this database may be USDoD’s way to round up some interested users. USDoD is also believed to be involved in a breach at TransUnion, the data of which was (partly) dumped in September, 2023.

We investigate whether an LLM can successfully perform financial statement analysis in a way similar to a professional human analyst. We provide standardized and anonymous financial statements to GPT4 and instruct the model to analyze them to determine the direction of future earnings. Even without any narrative or industry-specific information, the LLM outperforms financial analysts in its ability to predict earnings changes. The LLM exhibits a relative advantage over human analysts in situations when the analysts tend to struggle. Furthermore, we find that the prediction accuracy of the LLM is on par with the performance of a narrowly trained state-of-the-art ML model. LLM prediction does not stem from its training memory. Instead, we find that the LLM generates useful narrative insights about a company’s future performance. Lastly, our trading strategies based on GPT’s predictions yield a higher Sharpe ratio and alphas than strategies based on other models. Taken together, our results suggest that LLMs may take a central role in decision-making.

To conduct this part of our analysis, we collected a random sample of just under 1 million webpages from the archives of Common Crawl, an internet archive service that periodically collects snapshots of the internet as it exists at different points in time. We sampled pages collected by Common Crawl each year from 2013 through 2023 (approximately 90,000 pages per year) and checked to see if those pages still exist today.

After decades of strategic drift and costly acquisition failures, the U.S. Navy is sailing straight into a storm it can’t avoid. Despite the Defense Department’s lip service about China being the “pacing challenge,” decades of deindustrialization and policymakers’ failure to prioritize among services and threats have left the Navy ill-equipped to endure a sustained high-intensity conflict in the Pacific. The United States is unable to keep pace with Chinese shipbuilding and will fall even further behind in the coming years. 

Luckily for the government there isn’t an example of a company building a nationwide charging network much faster and cheaper for them to be compared against. More.