Compared to the well-rounded citizen that is the raven, the pelican is the serial killer of birds.
Facebook has spent the past year focused on its biggest weaknesses: how to make money and keep its more than 1 billion users tethered to the social network.
As of this weekend, I will have lifted a quarter of a million pounds since joining my gym in October.
That is the weight of the space shuttle. I am a golden god.
(Update — oops, that’s actually just for this program. I’ve actually lifted about three space shuttles. Sorry about that.)
The Verge on Google’s new messaging system:
The service’s Google+ integration is one of the best features in the entire product: every photo that you or a friend posts is automatically saved in a private, shared album on Google+.
Google makes a lot of great stuff, and when the advertising component of some of that stuff doesn’t bother me, I’m happy to be a customer, or the product, or whatever I am to Google when I use something of theirs. But while this obsession with becoming a Super Facebook may be a business/strategy necessity, it’s increasingly a barrier to me trying out their stuff. It’s not because I don’t like Google — it’s because I don’t especially like Facebook, or more accurately, I use services like FB and Gmail IN SPITE of their data collection business model, not because of it.
I just Apple’s iMessage all the time, and like seemingly every other Apple service, it’s generally very usable, but a bit janky at times. But whether I should or not, I trust it, because I paid Apple for it in the form of my computer, my phone, my iPad, etc., and I’ll pay them again when I update those eventually, or push them on my friends and relatives.
Tying things into Google+, your highly visible, lightly populated social network, is NOT a positive for me. It’s a negative. I’m not saying Google needs to care, just that this is the situation for me.
Wow, they have some big plans for the Metro in western Fairfax county, don’t they? Here’s what the Toll Road looks like in architectural fantasy land:
Umm…. ok. I guess I’ll believe it when I see it, but that’s what I said a couple years ago when they were talking about bringing the Metro to my neighborhood, and BAM, there it is, a big ol’ station out my window, next to my old office.
So anyways, I guess the idea is to build a bunch of stuff ON TOP of these above ground metro stations, which is actually kind of a cool idea, even if I have no idea if it makes economic sense given how much land is just sitting there. But sometimes density is cool for density’s sake; Reston Town Center is an awesome place not so much for what it has, but because it’s all in one place, and it doesn’t take a bunch of baseball field sized parking lots to support. Could they pull off something like that above a train depot? Could anyone?
Yes. CLEVELAND DID IT. I know, brace yourself. But one of my favorite ideas in my old Midwestern stomping ground was Tower City, which is basically exactly what I just described (although in a more classically urban environment). I can’t vouch for whether Tower City was a good urban planning decision, or good for the economy or whatever, because I have no idea if it was, but I certainly thought it was cool. It also felt very “alive” (unlike most of the place at the time); I probably would have spent more time there if I hadn’t been flat broke. But, you know… northeast Ohio and all that.
But there you go; something to aspire to. Cleveland…. but with jobs. Wow.
HAHA, Greece FTW.(more...)
National Journal on second-term Scandalpalooza starting up right on time:
Unlike Bill Clinton, Obama isn’t handing ammunition to Republicans in the form of self-created personal scandals. And yet he is presiding over a conflict-ridden era that is, if anything, even more wearying and exasperating than the Clinton era. The GOP is blocking his judges and Cabinet secretaries, attacking his budget proposals as both too austere and not austere enough, trying to withhold money for a smooth transition to the new health care law, and threatening again to ignore the debt limit and the perils of default. Now add multiple investigations of the IRS and Benghazi, some warranted and some excessive. Where will it all lead?
First of all, I love that he’s “presiding” over this mess, like he has any legal authority to referee the 7th grade homeroom that is Congress. But to answer the “where does it lead” question — the House is going to impeach him (technically, not in the way most people think about it where he’s actually removed from office), duh, because it’s the loudest possible rejection the House can make against him, and you don’t lose GOP primary votes for rejecting Obama. Precedent won’t matter, general opinion won’t matter, and of course, the waste of time and resources won’t matter, because most of them don’t care about using time and resources for anything useful anyways (that’s not really Congress’ thing anymore). It’s political nihilism, baby.
It was always going to end this way. People were calling it three years ago.