Sunday 9.23.2018 New York Times Digest


1. Shelf Life

“Wherever we are, at whatever age, we have an impulse to tell people who we really are through a few resonant objects.”

2. Can LeBron Bring Back Showtime? Don’t Bet Against Him.

“Any time LeBron steps on the court, he’s the best player on the court. There’s a bigger gap than I think many people would really believe.”

3. Why Trade Disputes Are More Than a Money Problem

“It’s important to realize that if you disrupt the world trading system — and the consensus outlawing war that is in place today — you are disrupting the financial means of punishing violations of war. In the end, you may be left with nothing but reliance on force.”

4. We Are Not the Resistance

“Viewed from the broad sweep of history, Donald Trump is the resistance. We are not.”

5. The Coders of Kentucky

“Why outsource coding jobs to Bangalore when we can insource jobs to eastern Kentucky, poor in jobs but rich in work ethic, and every one I.T. job brings four or five other jobs with it?”

6. Just Don’t Call It Privacy

“Asking companies whose business models revolve around exploiting data-based consumer-influence techniques to explain their privacy policies seems about as useful as asking sharks to hold forth on veganism.”

7. What China Can Teach The U.S. About A.I..

“China’s core data advantage lies not just in breadth (the number of users) and access (the amount of data that users contribute) but also in the depth of data on each user — the real-world activities of Chinese people that are captured in a digital format useful to an A.I. algorithm.”

8. Let Teenagers Sleep In

“Whenever schools have managed the transition to a later start time, students get more sleep, attendance goes up, grades improve and there is a significant reduction in car accidents.”

9. Nietzsche Made Me Do It

“What I discovered in the mountains … is that becoming who you are usually involves getting over who you think you are. In fact the ‘who’ — the idea of oneself — is probably an impediment to growth and honesty.”

10. The Big Secret of Celebrity Wealth (Is That No One Knows Anything)

“If you want to know how rich (or not) a celebrity is, CNW has an answer. No one is vouching for the veracity of that answer — CNW’s proprietors ‘expressly exclude liability for any such inaccuracies or errors to the fullest extent permitted by law,’ according to the terms of use — but it’s an answer nonetheless.”

11. By the Book: Reese Witherspoon

“I could write a whole dissertation on Go Set a Watchman.”

12. The Court and the Classroom

“No other arena of constitutional decision making — not churches, not hotels, not hospitals, not restaurants, not police stations, not military bases, not automobiles, not even homes — comes close to matching the cultural import of the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence governing public schools.”

13. Termites Are Actually Shrunken Cockroaches and Other Things About Them You Really Don’t Want to Know

“Termites are the unloved freaks of the social insect world. Bees are praised for their pollination skills and ants are lauded for their industry. Termites, on the other hand, are an affront to human civilization, munching their way through everything we hold dear: our libraries, our homes, even our cash — in 2011 an errant gang of termites burrowed into an Indian bank and ate $220,000 in bank notes.”

14. Listen to the World

“What if we chose where to travel based on sound?”

15. What Happens When a Single Art Project Becomes a Decades-Long Obsession?

“Any serious art requires prodigious commitment. Ambitious works can take years. But there is dedication to one’s craft, and then there is what many might call obsession, the decades-long fixation on a consuming project.”

16. The Craftsman Still Making Windsor Chairs by Hand

“A single chair takes George a full week, six hours a day, to build. The wood is cut locally, sometimes from trees on the 60-acre property, and he keeps it in whole logs so it stays moist; when he is ready to use it, he splits it with an iron wedge. Each component of a Windsor requires a different tensile strength, so he uses three kinds of timber: butternut for the seat, white oak for the spindles and cherry for the legs. George keeps their distinct grains intact; traditionally Windsors were painted black or green to hide differences in the woods, but buyers in recent years have come to embrace the mix.”

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