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Reblogged:Friday Hodgepodge

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Four Things

1. A couple of weeks ago, reader Ryan G brought the hurricane information blog Tropical Tidbits to my attention.

Let me second his recommendation. The proprietor is a meteorologist who periodically posts videos, such as the one below, in which he goes through the relevant available data and explains in layman-accessible terms what he thinks is likely to happen and why.

Probably lots of us on the coast develop a feel for what we have to worry about or not, but we all know that's not infallible. What I like about the videos is that they incorporate more than I know about and in an intelligible way I can use, with the other information at my disposal to weigh my risks more intelligently.

2. En route to other things, I learned that browning- and bruise-resistant Arctic apples are finally on the market in the United States. I'd first heard of these some time ago through an Ayn Rand Institute GMO Monday podcast, but had forgotten about them

The New York Times Magazine article, by the way, notes that GMO technology is demonized in part because it was introduced by large corporations. The reaction of the government to this pressure, onerous regulation, has ended up making it extremely difficult for all but the largest corporations to introduce new products, thus perpetuating the ability of the organic food/anti-GMO lobby to continue using this anti-capitalist smear against the technology.

3. Via Hacker News comes an interesting diversion/research tool. The Marginalia Search tool is, as its creator puts it, geared towards "serendipity," or helping the user find something "interesting" about a topic. This it does in part by "favor[ing] text-heavy sites and punish[ing] modern web design," as the title of the comment thread at Hacker News puts it.

4. Journalists Look Like Total Idiots or Evil Gaslighters, part 8,076: As I tweeted this morning:
: "This year's giant Antarctic ozone hole probably due to climate change."

: "If the warming hadn't happened, we'd likely be looking at a much more typical ozone hole."
Only two years ago, we'd had the smallest ozone hole on record. The ozone hole is a seasonal occurrence each winter since sunlight is needed to make the highly unstable O3 molecule. So here's a bonus: If the story is that some change in weather patterns is causing the ozone hole to have an unstable size, the press has gotten that part of the story (if there is one) wrong at least twice now.

When something explains everything, it explains nothing.

-- CAV

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