Joshua Katz has been studying American dialects and has made more than 120 maps of some of the differences in American speech. Here are a few examples:
These maps are a fascinating representation of the differences in American speech. I was surprised by several of them. I’d be interested to see one for the pronunciation of “gif”.
President Obama Comes Out Strongly Against Patent Trolls; Here Are The Details | Techdirt
That said, get ready for the pushback. Pharmaceutical companies, giant patent trolls like Intellectual Ventures (and some other legacy tech companies who are long past their innovation days) and a gaggle of people claiming vaguely to represent “small inventors” are about to go ballistic over these proposed changes, and will seek to block any real progress, while simultaneously looking to water down the proposals as much as possible. It’s what they did the last time, and it worked. Of course, the problem has only gotten progressively worse since then, so hopefully people realize that their complaints are really more about protecting their own chosen business models, rather than innovation as a whole.
Nice to see the President come out against patent trolling. Though it sounds like the most beneficial elements will require Congress to act. Let’s hope these efforts won’t be watered down as they wind through the
A video showing new features coming in Windows 8.1, such as better multitasking, better customization for the start screen (animated backgrounds, using the desktop background and more tile sizes) and improved search. Mostly focuses on the start screen, but does contain a glimpse of the desktop and the start button.
The ability of use the desktop background on the start screen should make the transition between the two less jarring.
(via Ars Technica)
As Vandals Deface U.S. Parks, Some Point to Online Show‑Offs – NYTimes.com
It was the latest example of a trend that has been unnerving park officials from Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado to Arches in Utah and Joshua Tree in California. Just as drought and rapid development have caused a rise in encounters between humans and wild animals on the edges of many American cities, the wilder side of urban life — vandalism, graffiti and litter — has found its way into the wilderness.
This is truly sad. I don’t understand this lack of respect for our public lands.
You’re Too Cheap to Fly Faster — Lift and Drag — Medium
But there’s a big difference between this hypersonic flight and the ever faster computers that have penetrated nearly every corner of society, and now travel everywhere in pockets and purses, and even on some people’s faces. We don’t get to use the really fast airplanes. We’re actually flying slower than we were 50 years ago.
It turns out we’re just too cheap to fly faster.