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David Brin

David Brin 

Futurist, Science Fiction Author, Scientist. Advocate for a Transparent Society.

Occupation: Author, scientist, futurist, public speaker

Followers: 60,901

Cream of the Crop: 10/22/2011

Added to CircleCount.com: 12/17/2016That's the date, where David Brin has been indexed by CircleCount.com.
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Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 60

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2017-04-24 16:47:58 (60 comments; 30 reshares; 113 +1s; )Open 

Seriously. Read every word of this recent AP interview with our president. It is verbatim, so he’s not being treated unfairly… though note how many places were marked “unintelligible.”

Let’s be fair. I am interviewed a lot and I’m well aware that spoken English doesn’t always look so good, when directly transcribed. I try to speak in sentences and paragraphs, as does any careful and experienced hand. Still – despite lots of practice – I know there’ll be passages that come across either unclear or sounding repetitious or distracted. We should make allowances. And yet, even so –

-- see if you can pick out one passage, even one, that is cogent and/or uttered as an adult might speak. One. Even one. Heck, find more than a couple that are coherent at any level.

BTW, which seems more likely, that we just saved $70 million on each F35 plane because ofhard audits set in mo... more »

Most reshares: 30

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2017-04-24 16:47:58 (60 comments; 30 reshares; 113 +1s; )Open 

Seriously. Read every word of this recent AP interview with our president. It is verbatim, so he’s not being treated unfairly… though note how many places were marked “unintelligible.”

Let’s be fair. I am interviewed a lot and I’m well aware that spoken English doesn’t always look so good, when directly transcribed. I try to speak in sentences and paragraphs, as does any careful and experienced hand. Still – despite lots of practice – I know there’ll be passages that come across either unclear or sounding repetitious or distracted. We should make allowances. And yet, even so –

-- see if you can pick out one passage, even one, that is cogent and/or uttered as an adult might speak. One. Even one. Heck, find more than a couple that are coherent at any level.

BTW, which seems more likely, that we just saved $70 million on each F35 plane because ofhard audits set in mo... more »

Most plusones: 214

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2017-04-25 03:35:23 (11 comments; 27 reshares; 214 +1s; )Open 


Appearing at his first public event since leaving office, Obama fired off a punishing fusillade of grammatically correct sentences, the likes of which the American people have not heard from the White House since he departed... in what was widely seen as a brutal attack on his successor, without ever once referring to or mentioning Donald Trump.

“About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them,” Carol Foyler said. “I couldn’t believe he was going after Trump like that.”

Borowitz is brilliant: "Obama’s blistering deployment of complete sentences clearly got under the skin of their intended target, who, moments after the event, responded with an angry tweet: “Obama bad (or sick) guy. Failing. Sad!”
http://www.ne... more »

Latest 50 posts

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2017-04-29 18:51:29 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 7 +1s; )Open 

As a candidate in the 2016 election, Trump decried Obama's use of executive orders.. But that is virtually ALL that DT has done in 100 days. Dig it. Obama faced a Congress held by the laziest and most dogmatic opposing party in US history. Hence an excuse. Today the GOP controls every branch of government and every single Washington lever of power. Every one, as they did from 2001-2007, when the GOP reign was the laziest in the history of the republic, not even acting on their declared desires. And if Trump can’t get anything passed, who is to blame?

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/28/politics/donald-trump-100-day-data/

As a candidate in the 2016 election, Trump decried Obama's use of executive orders.. But that is virtually ALL that DT has done in 100 days. Dig it. Obama faced a Congress held by the laziest and most dogmatic opposing party in US history. Hence an excuse. Today the GOP controls every branch of government and every single Washington lever of power. Every one, as they did from 2001-2007, when the GOP reign was the laziest in the history of the republic, not even acting on their declared desires. And if Trump can’t get anything passed, who is to blame?

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/28/politics/donald-trump-100-day-data/___

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2017-04-29 00:48:54 (21 comments; 8 reshares; 83 +1s; )Open 

President Donald Trump declared Friday that an "eight-year assault" on Second Amendment rights had come to a "crashing end" with his election. But… um… can you name a single gun-rights complaint - or fervid NRA prediction — that was based on any actual, actual, actual events? One federal level limitation on gun owners that a majority of democratic pols — or Obama — actually pushed for?

Enjoy your victory over pretend enemies!

President Donald Trump declared Friday that an "eight-year assault" on Second Amendment rights had come to a "crashing end" with his election. But… um… can you name a single gun-rights complaint - or fervid NRA prediction — that was based on any actual, actual, actual events? One federal level limitation on gun owners that a majority of democratic pols — or Obama — actually pushed for?

Enjoy your victory over pretend enemies!___

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2017-04-28 19:39:39 (3 comments; 0 reshares; 12 +1s; )Open 

Weekend posting starts with an amazing turnaround in India, fueled in large part by the brilliant introduction or people-empowering technology. It's good to know that (quasi-western) enlightenment civilization will have a new and vigorous home, as Pax American self-destructs.

Oh, but might we rise up again, out of dismal civil war. There's a chance. Our parents did it!

Weekend posting starts with an amazing turnaround in India, fueled in large part by the brilliant introduction or people-empowering technology. It's good to know that (quasi-western) enlightenment civilization will have a new and vigorous home, as Pax American self-destructs.

Oh, but might we rise up again, out of dismal civil war. There's a chance. Our parents did it!___

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2017-04-28 16:24:13 (19 comments; 8 reshares; 48 +1s; )Open 

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales launched Wikitribune, an independent site (not affiliated with Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Foundation) “that brings journalists and a community of volunteers together” in a combination that Wales hopes will combat fake news online. The site is launching with a crowdfunding campaign to fund the first Wikitribune journalists.

Professional journalists will be paid to write “global news stories,” while volunteer contributors will “vet the facts, helps make sure the language is factual and neutral, and will to the maximum extent possible be transparent about the source of news posting full transcripts, video, and audio of interviews. Thus it is hoped that a combined approach like Wikitribune’s can be more successful than WikiNews has been, because it’s a hybrid of the paid and volunteer models.
==

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales launched Wikitribune, an independent site (not affiliated with Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Foundation) “that brings journalists and a community of volunteers together” in a combination that Wales hopes will combat fake news online. The site is launching with a crowdfunding campaign to fund the first Wikitribune journalists.

Professional journalists will be paid to write “global news stories,” while volunteer contributors will “vet the facts, helps make sure the language is factual and neutral, and will to the maximum extent possible be transparent about the source of news posting full transcripts, video, and audio of interviews. Thus it is hoped that a combined approach like Wikitribune’s can be more successful than WikiNews has been, because it’s a hybrid of the paid and volunteer models.
==___

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2017-04-28 06:26:12 (2 comments; 9 reshares; 30 +1s; )Open 


http://datazoid.deviantart.com/art/Heroes-of-Science-Action-Figures-337514889


http://datazoid.deviantart.com/art/Heroes-of-Science-Action-Figures-337514889___

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2017-04-28 02:29:44 (30 comments; 11 reshares; 74 +1s; )Open 

The rebooted Omni-Online has featured Ten science fiction books that "changed the genre forever." Very flattered to be included on this list - though not sure I deserve to be.

https://omni.media/sci-fi-books-that-changed-the-genre-forever?utm_content=buffer82cd8&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

The rebooted Omni-Online has featured Ten science fiction books that "changed the genre forever." Very flattered to be included on this list - though not sure I deserve to be.

https://omni.media/sci-fi-books-that-changed-the-genre-forever?utm_content=buffer82cd8&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer___

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2017-04-27 23:58:05 (17 comments; 4 reshares; 42 +1s; )Open 

Tax reform? If "reform" means wanting to simplify the system so it is no longer a 10,000 rule monstrosity, I have long offered an absolutely guaranteed way to do it. The non-partisan method is technical, using computer optimization. But the "No-Losers" method not only can work... it works almost by definition..

In contrast the Trump "reform" has one aim. In the 1980s and again in the 2000s, "supply side" tax cuts poured wealth from our carotid arteries into open oligarch maws without once, ever, at all, even one time, having the predicted outcomes. The effect of every single clause in Trump's proposal is to enhance wealth disparities far beyond those of 1789 France.

Nothing so well proves the stunning stupidity of the neo-feudal lords, that they think this has any logical conclusion, other than tumbrels.

Tax reform? If "reform" means wanting to simplify the system so it is no longer a 10,000 rule monstrosity, I have long offered an absolutely guaranteed way to do it. The non-partisan method is technical, using computer optimization. But the "No-Losers" method not only can work... it works almost by definition..

In contrast the Trump "reform" has one aim. In the 1980s and again in the 2000s, "supply side" tax cuts poured wealth from our carotid arteries into open oligarch maws without once, ever, at all, even one time, having the predicted outcomes. The effect of every single clause in Trump's proposal is to enhance wealth disparities far beyond those of 1789 France.

Nothing so well proves the stunning stupidity of the neo-feudal lords, that they think this has any logical conclusion, other than tumbrels.___

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2017-04-26 22:06:17 (53 comments; 7 reshares; 61 +1s; )Open 

"Our expectation is that with the growth we create and the elimination of many deductions that we will make it revenue neutral," said Marc Short, the White House Director of Legislative Affairs, doubling down yet again on a Supply Side (trickle down) theory that sounded plausible when JFK pushed the first big tax cut in the 1960s, and still sounded conceivable when Reagan pushed the next round. Then ridiculous when Bush Sr. got us to go with this “voodoo” that has never once worked, ever, in any way, at any level. Even once. Ever.

Then came the big tax cut for the rich under Bush Junior. And most economists and a majority of Americans asked: “Are you kidding me?” It didn’t work (again) and deficits skyrocketed, along with wealth disparities now approaching those of France in 1789.

So now the Trumpists are doing it again. And the excuses aren’t even being pushedhard. The m... more »

"Our expectation is that with the growth we create and the elimination of many deductions that we will make it revenue neutral," said Marc Short, the White House Director of Legislative Affairs, doubling down yet again on a Supply Side (trickle down) theory that sounded plausible when JFK pushed the first big tax cut in the 1960s, and still sounded conceivable when Reagan pushed the next round. Then ridiculous when Bush Sr. got us to go with this “voodoo” that has never once worked, ever, in any way, at any level. Even once. Ever.

Then came the big tax cut for the rich under Bush Junior. And most economists and a majority of Americans asked: “Are you kidding me?” It didn’t work (again) and deficits skyrocketed, along with wealth disparities now approaching those of France in 1789.

So now the Trumpists are doing it again. And the excuses aren’t even being pushed hard. The masters want this. And that’s that. It’s no longer “fool me once.” It is outright rape.

And worse. Read the details, like elimination of inheritance tax so that oligarchy can preserve its feudal power across generations, and the alternative minimum tax, so they do not have to pay for wars they declare, and medical expense deduction. These people are insane, if they think Americans are truly this stupid.___

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2017-04-26 17:46:07 (5 comments; 0 reshares; 18 +1s; )Open 

June 2 I speak at The AI Conference in San Francisco. About Artificial Intelligence, of course.

http://aiconference.com/events/2017-san-francisco/

June 2 I speak at The AI Conference in San Francisco. About Artificial Intelligence, of course.

http://aiconference.com/events/2017-san-francisco/___

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2017-04-26 17:00:46 (1 comments; 2 reshares; 23 +1s; )Open 

I’ve begun answering questions on a new phone app called Askers! For info, see TheAskers.com. New users get free credits, so no charge to listen to my first few 1-minute answers - about singularities, uplift, gravity lasers, AI and The Postman flick. You can even earn money by asking popular questions!
http://www.TheAskers.com



I’ve begun answering questions on a new phone app called Askers! For info, see TheAskers.com. New users get free credits, so no charge to listen to my first few 1-minute answers - about singularities, uplift, gravity lasers, AI and The Postman flick. You can even earn money by asking popular questions!
http://www.TheAskers.com

___

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2017-04-25 18:52:30 (3 comments; 9 reshares; 42 +1s; )Open 

My midweek posting offers you Seven Underlying Reasons for the War on Science. And I promise at least a few you never thought of before! (Well, except that I mentioned some of them here, from time to time.)

We need to understand the roots of this betrayal, in order to fight it.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/declining-trust-in-rising-fear-of-our.html

My midweek posting offers you Seven Underlying Reasons for the War on Science. And I promise at least a few you never thought of before! (Well, except that I mentioned some of them here, from time to time.)

We need to understand the roots of this betrayal, in order to fight it.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/declining-trust-in-rising-fear-of-our.html___

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2017-04-25 17:55:43 (18 comments; 6 reshares; 87 +1s; )Open 

Marissa Mayer Set to Receive $186 Million for Failing... Because... This Is How Corporate America Works. In addition to $200M in other "compensation." How is this justified? Our companies are vampired of value in order to "get top talent into management." Instead of spending to develop new products, members of the CEO-oligarch caste heap on debt to do stock buy-backs that boost their golden parachutes.

Think. In any other field, high pay would draw in talent from other fields to compete with these 5000 golf buddy CEOs. That flood of competitors should then pull CEO pay down. It's called supply & demand capitalism -- the thing these folks claim to favor! But it hasn't happened for 40 years. Instead, this closed cabal appoints each other onto boards that then hire "indispensable" pals at rates that would fund many world nations.

... more »

Marissa Mayer Set to Receive $186 Million for Failing... Because... This Is How Corporate America Works. In addition to $200M in other "compensation." How is this justified? Our companies are vampired of value in order to "get top talent into management." Instead of spending to develop new products, members of the CEO-oligarch caste heap on debt to do stock buy-backs that boost their golden parachutes.

Think. In any other field, high pay would draw in talent from other fields to compete with these 5000 golf buddy CEOs. That flood of competitors should then pull CEO pay down. It's called supply & demand capitalism -- the thing these folks claim to favor! But it hasn't happened for 40 years. Instead, this closed cabal appoints each other onto boards that then hire "indispensable" pals at rates that would fund many world nations.

And now they are so rich that wealth disparities have reached levels 1789 France, affecting politics so that correction is impossible, short of revolution.
See where I decrypt how we came to this. How "business" leaders became th conniving enemies of Adam Smith:

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2006/06/allocation-vs-markets-ancient-struggle.html___

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2017-04-25 15:12:18 (16 comments; 10 reshares; 80 +1s; )Open 

Robert M. Pirsig, who inspired generations to road trip across America with his "novelistic autobigraphy," Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, died in April at the age of 88. I was of an age to immerse myself in the marvel of his book, which seemed a far better approach to philosophical transcendence than the fantasies of Carlos Castaneda… and Pirsig helped me to question the west’s silly obsession with that merchant of smug delusion, Plato.

Indeed, the main character in my story “Senses, Three and Six” was inspired to a large degree by Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.


Robert M. Pirsig, who inspired generations to road trip across America with his "novelistic autobigraphy," Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, died in April at the age of 88. I was of an age to immerse myself in the marvel of his book, which seemed a far better approach to philosophical transcendence than the fantasies of Carlos Castaneda… and Pirsig helped me to question the west’s silly obsession with that merchant of smug delusion, Plato.

Indeed, the main character in my story “Senses, Three and Six” was inspired to a large degree by Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
___

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2017-04-25 03:35:23 (11 comments; 27 reshares; 214 +1s; )Open 


Appearing at his first public event since leaving office, Obama fired off a punishing fusillade of grammatically correct sentences, the likes of which the American people have not heard from the White House since he departed... in what was widely seen as a brutal attack on his successor, without ever once referring to or mentioning Donald Trump.

“About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them,” Carol Foyler said. “I couldn’t believe he was going after Trump like that.”

Borowitz is brilliant: "Obama’s blistering deployment of complete sentences clearly got under the skin of their intended target, who, moments after the event, responded with an angry tweet: “Obama bad (or sick) guy. Failing. Sad!”
http://www.ne... more »


Appearing at his first public event since leaving office, Obama fired off a punishing fusillade of grammatically correct sentences, the likes of which the American people have not heard from the White House since he departed... in what was widely seen as a brutal attack on his successor, without ever once referring to or mentioning Donald Trump.

“About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them,” Carol Foyler said. “I couldn’t believe he was going after Trump like that.”

Borowitz is brilliant: "Obama’s blistering deployment of complete sentences clearly got under the skin of their intended target, who, moments after the event, responded with an angry tweet: “Obama bad (or sick) guy. Failing. Sad!”

http://www.newyorker.com/humor/borowitz-report/obamas-barrage-of-complete-sentences-seen-as-brutal-attack-on-trump
___

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2017-04-25 00:10:39 (2 comments; 10 reshares; 60 +1s; )Open 

Record-setting weather and climate events are occurring at an accelerating pace. And yes, those who actually study these things know darned well what the cause has to be.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/04/24/record-breaking-climate-events-all-over-the-world-are-being-shaped-by-global-warming-scientists-find/?utm_term=.47c50d21fa97


Record-setting weather and climate events are occurring at an accelerating pace. And yes, those who actually study these things know darned well what the cause has to be.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/04/24/record-breaking-climate-events-all-over-the-world-are-being-shaped-by-global-warming-scientists-find/?utm_term=.47c50d21fa97
___

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2017-04-24 16:47:58 (60 comments; 30 reshares; 113 +1s; )Open 

Seriously. Read every word of this recent AP interview with our president. It is verbatim, so he’s not being treated unfairly… though note how many places were marked “unintelligible.”

Let’s be fair. I am interviewed a lot and I’m well aware that spoken English doesn’t always look so good, when directly transcribed. I try to speak in sentences and paragraphs, as does any careful and experienced hand. Still – despite lots of practice – I know there’ll be passages that come across either unclear or sounding repetitious or distracted. We should make allowances. And yet, even so –

-- see if you can pick out one passage, even one, that is cogent and/or uttered as an adult might speak. One. Even one. Heck, find more than a couple that are coherent at any level.

BTW, which seems more likely, that we just saved $70 million on each F35 plane because ofhard audits set in mo... more »

Seriously. Read every word of this recent AP interview with our president. It is verbatim, so he’s not being treated unfairly… though note how many places were marked “unintelligible.”

Let’s be fair. I am interviewed a lot and I’m well aware that spoken English doesn’t always look so good, when directly transcribed. I try to speak in sentences and paragraphs, as does any careful and experienced hand. Still – despite lots of practice – I know there’ll be passages that come across either unclear or sounding repetitious or distracted. We should make allowances. And yet, even so –

-- see if you can pick out one passage, even one, that is cogent and/or uttered as an adult might speak. One. Even one. Heck, find more than a couple that are coherent at any level.

BTW, which seems more likely, that we just saved $70 million on each F35 plane because of hard audits set in motion months ago by the Obama Administration… or because Donald Trump shouted the word “Boeing!” at Lockheed. (The former is what actually happened.) Even if there weren’t firm contracts, does he believe Boeing could underbid the contractor who is now fully tooled and in production, just because the president shouts their name as an incantation? Bluffing your partners out of some real estate is not the same as managing a complex, 21st Century defense contract. ___

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2017-04-23 22:52:15 (35 comments; 20 reshares; 136 +1s; )Open 

Following an amazing 30-fold increase in PV sales over the past nine years, the solar industry in the U.S. now employs more than 260,000 workers nationwide. That’s more workers than Apple, Facebook, and Google combined. This spectacular rise -- declared impossible under the bushites -- was unleashed by the democrats' brief, manic time in power -- 2009-2010 -- and protected under Obama.

And now it is too late for the oil sheiks and coal barons and their paid (Fox) shills to stop it. Because Adam Smith is now aboard. There is vastly more money to be made in renewables than in fossil fuel development. Sorry dinosaurs. Sorry fossils.


Following an amazing 30-fold increase in PV sales over the past nine years, the solar industry in the U.S. now employs more than 260,000 workers nationwide. That’s more workers than Apple, Facebook, and Google combined. This spectacular rise -- declared impossible under the bushites -- was unleashed by the democrats' brief, manic time in power -- 2009-2010 -- and protected under Obama.

And now it is too late for the oil sheiks and coal barons and their paid (Fox) shills to stop it. Because Adam Smith is now aboard. There is vastly more money to be made in renewables than in fossil fuel development. Sorry dinosaurs. Sorry fossils.
___

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2017-04-23 03:12:04 (6 comments; 1 reshares; 17 +1s; )Open 

And you didn’t expect this? As if I haven’t warned you for night on 30 years?
A hidden spy camera in an innocuous looking AC to USB wall charger plug.

https://www.amazon.com/hidden-Camera-Charger-Memory-Hidden/dp/B01HEC7G6W/



And you didn’t expect this? As if I haven’t warned you for night on 30 years?
A hidden spy camera in an innocuous looking AC to USB wall charger plug.

https://www.amazon.com/hidden-Camera-Charger-Memory-Hidden/dp/B01HEC7G6W/

___

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2017-04-23 02:11:44 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

All right, tell me the "alien cylinder" raved about on Fox doesn't remind you of something...

... that an astronaut lassos in the first scene of EXISTENCE? Have a look at the amazing video preview-trailer for Existence, with incredible art by Patrick Farley!

http://www.tinyurl.com/exist-trailer

All right, tell me the "alien cylinder" raved about on Fox doesn't remind you of something...

... that an astronaut lassos in the first scene of EXISTENCE? Have a look at the amazing video preview-trailer for Existence, with incredible art by Patrick Farley!

http://www.tinyurl.com/exist-trailer___

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2017-04-21 23:38:52 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 19 +1s; )Open 

In the run-up to Saturday's March for Science, I've posted a missive that starts with more about the vacant position of White House Science Adviser, then riff into the Singularity! (And my article about it, at Ray Kurzweil's site.) Plus some amazing sci-news, demonstrating that we're still an amazing (the MOST amazing) human civilization!

Oh, if there's not a Science March near you? Consider standing on a streetcorner with a sign saying SUPPORT A SCIENTIFIC CIVILIZATION. You'll get some honks!

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/science-steps-forward-through-minefield.html

In the run-up to Saturday's March for Science, I've posted a missive that starts with more about the vacant position of White House Science Adviser, then riff into the Singularity! (And my article about it, at Ray Kurzweil's site.) Plus some amazing sci-news, demonstrating that we're still an amazing (the MOST amazing) human civilization!

Oh, if there's not a Science March near you? Consider standing on a streetcorner with a sign saying SUPPORT A SCIENTIFIC CIVILIZATION. You'll get some honks!

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/science-steps-forward-through-minefield.html___

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2017-04-21 18:40:46 (13 comments; 8 reshares; 48 +1s; )Open 

Girding yourself for Saturday's science march? This article will steam you, offering much more detail on the White House Science Adviser office, first officially established by President Eisenhower, offering a partial list of responsibilities.
"Manage NASA strategy and budget. Work with the Office of Management and Budget on federal research and development investments. Deal with climate change, both in terms of mitigating it and diffusing the controversy. Testify before Congress. Oversee the National Science Foundation. Execute whatever the classified work on national security and homeland security might be. Forge science and technology cooperation agreements with nations like Brazil, China, India, Russia, and Korea. Support the State Department on other science-related initiatives. Put the president in contact with top outside experts when necessary. All in all, (Obama Science Adviser... more »

Girding yourself for Saturday's science march? This article will steam you, offering much more detail on the White House Science Adviser office, first officially established by President Eisenhower, offering a partial list of responsibilities.
"Manage NASA strategy and budget. Work with the Office of Management and Budget on federal research and development investments. Deal with climate change, both in terms of mitigating it and diffusing the controversy. Testify before Congress. Oversee the National Science Foundation. Execute whatever the classified work on national security and homeland security might be. Forge science and technology cooperation agreements with nations like Brazil, China, India, Russia, and Korea. Support the State Department on other science-related initiatives. Put the president in contact with top outside experts when necessary. All in all, (Obama Science Adviser John) Holdren worked in approximately 70 different science fields at any given time."

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2017/04/trump_should_not_appoint_a_science_adviser.html

Even when the office was demoted, under George W. Bush, the WHSA - Jack Marburger - was a prestigious scientist who remained in a science-unfriendly administration because of crucial roles in the National Security Council -- roles that are now, under science-hating Donald Trump, deliberately left unfilled.)

Now look again at my recent posting about the fellow who was DT's top candidate for the Science Adviser role - David Gelernter - and see how this whole thing just gets weirder and weirder.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/in-defense-of-enlightenment-science.html

March on Saturday. ___

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2017-04-21 17:30:40 (1 comments; 13 reshares; 43 +1s; )Open 

A hilarious and yet insightful riff on how one can use the placebo effect – even knowing the “medicine” is fake – to achieve positive-desired outcomes.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/why-i-take-fake-pills-180962765/



A hilarious and yet insightful riff on how one can use the placebo effect – even knowing the “medicine” is fake – to achieve positive-desired outcomes.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/why-i-take-fake-pills-180962765/

___

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2017-04-21 13:59:01 (5 comments; 6 reshares; 60 +1s; )Open 

As NASA’s Cassini spacecraft moves toward its Grand Finale, it will conduct its final and closest flyby of Saturn’s moon Titan on April 22, 2017, passing over Titan’s surface at just 608 miles (979 kilometers), where instruments will conduct closeup observations of the hydrocarbon lakes near the moon’s north pole and use radar to look through its atmospheric haze and image surface detail. One of the most amazing sites in the Solar System.

http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/missions/solar-system/cassini-conduct-last-closest-flyby-titan/#msJIFoZK3pS5w1X8.99

As NASA’s Cassini spacecraft moves toward its Grand Finale, it will conduct its final and closest flyby of Saturn’s moon Titan on April 22, 2017, passing over Titan’s surface at just 608 miles (979 kilometers), where instruments will conduct closeup observations of the hydrocarbon lakes near the moon’s north pole and use radar to look through its atmospheric haze and image surface detail. One of the most amazing sites in the Solar System.

http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/missions/solar-system/cassini-conduct-last-closest-flyby-titan/#msJIFoZK3pS5w1X8.99___

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2017-04-21 03:21:22 (24 comments; 10 reshares; 81 +1s; )Open 

"2,250 square miles of coastal Louisiana is expected to be lost" in the next 50 years. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency over the state's rapidly eroding coastline. Oh, and the US Navy is desperately worried about 12 new Russian bases on the nearly ice-free Arctic.

There's your "politically correct science." Morons.

Everybody march on Saturday.

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/20/524896256/louisianas-governor-declares-state-of-emergency-over-disappearing-coastline

"2,250 square miles of coastal Louisiana is expected to be lost" in the next 50 years. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency over the state's rapidly eroding coastline. Oh, and the US Navy is desperately worried about 12 new Russian bases on the nearly ice-free Arctic.

There's your "politically correct science." Morons.

Everybody march on Saturday.

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/20/524896256/louisianas-governor-declares-state-of-emergency-over-disappearing-coastline___

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2017-04-21 00:16:08 (0 comments; 12 reshares; 78 +1s; )Open 

Looking back toward its origin... This glorious image from the Cassini spacecraft shows Earth (and our moon) viewed between the icy rings of Saturn!


Looking back toward its origin... This glorious image from the Cassini spacecraft shows Earth (and our moon) viewed between the icy rings of Saturn!
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2017-04-20 03:48:18 (6 comments; 7 reshares; 59 +1s; )Open 

This essay attempts to show (days before the big science march) that scientists need better tactics in explaining matters like climate change to the public. And yet, I find the writer’s proposed methods to be little improvement:

“Research also shows that science communicators can be more effective after they’ve gained the audience’s trust. With that in mind, it may be more worthwhile to figure out how to talk about science with people they already know, through, say, local and community interactions, than it is to try to publish explainers on national news sites.”

Sure, but the suggested methods are way to wimpy for this stage of a civil war, in which every fact-centered profession is under fire. As the author himself shows:

“At a Heartland Institute conference last month, Lamar Smith, the Republican chairman of the House science committee, told attendees hewould now refe... more »

This essay attempts to show (days before the big science march) that scientists need better tactics in explaining matters like climate change to the public. And yet, I find the writer’s proposed methods to be little improvement:

“Research also shows that science communicators can be more effective after they’ve gained the audience’s trust. With that in mind, it may be more worthwhile to figure out how to talk about science with people they already know, through, say, local and community interactions, than it is to try to publish explainers on national news sites.”

Sure, but the suggested methods are way to wimpy for this stage of a civil war, in which every fact-centered profession is under fire. As the author himself shows:

“At a Heartland Institute conference last month, Lamar Smith, the Republican chairman of the House science committee, told attendees he would now refer to “climate science” as “politically correct science,” to loud cheers. This lumps scientists in with the nebulous “left” and, as Daniel Engber pointed out here in Slate about the upcoming March for Science, rebrands scientific authority as just another form of elitism.”

This kind of tactic needs ferocious, not tepid response. I find it effective to point out that half of the modern economy is built on scientific discoveries of this and earlier generations. And that Soviet tanks would have rolled across western Europe without our advantages provided by science.

I ask whether expert opinion should at least inform public policy, even if experts prove to be wrong, maybe 5% of the time. I ask them if we should listen to the US Navy, which totally believes in climate change, given that the Russians are building twelve new bases lining the now melting Arctic Sea.

I ask why, if they demand more proof of climate change, their leaders so desperately quash the satellites and cancel the instruments and ban the studies that could nail it down.

Sure, it pleases vanity to envision that scientists - in fact the most-competitive of humans - are sniveling “grant huggers.” But if that’s so, then:

1- where is a listing of these so-called “grants”? After 20 years, no one has tabulated a list to show that every scientist believing in climate change has a climate grant?

2- what about meteorologists? They are rich, powerful, with no need of measly “climate grants.” Their vast, sophisticated, world-spanning weather models rake in billions from not just governments but insurance companies, media and industry, who rely on the miracle TEN DAY forecasts that have replaced the old, ridiculous four-hour “weather reports” of our youth. These are among the greatest geniuses on the planet… and every single one of them is deeply worried about climate change.

3- Funny thing. The Koch brothers and other coal barons and oil sheiks have offered much larger grants” to any prestigious or widely respected scientists who will join the denialist cult… I mean camp. None has accepted. So much for the “motivated by grants” theory.

No, I’ve weighed in elsewhere about how to deal with this cult. And it does not pay to be gentle.
http://www.davidbrin.com/nonfiction/climatechange3.html___

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2017-04-19 17:05:41 (1 comments; 3 reshares; 53 +1s; )Open 

Health news. Winning the war against ancient diseases! The World Health Organization is on track to meet its goals to control, eliminate or eradicate sleeping sickness, Chagas and other ancient illnesses by 2020. Example: In 2016, just 25 people worldwide were infected by Guinea worm disease or dracunculiasis, a parasitic infection transmitted by contaminated drinking water. President Jimmy Carter, whose campaign against this parasite was especially effective, wants the “last Guinea worm to die before I do.”

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/18/health/neglected-tropical-diseases-who/


Health news. Winning the war against ancient diseases! The World Health Organization is on track to meet its goals to control, eliminate or eradicate sleeping sickness, Chagas and other ancient illnesses by 2020. Example: In 2016, just 25 people worldwide were infected by Guinea worm disease or dracunculiasis, a parasitic infection transmitted by contaminated drinking water. President Jimmy Carter, whose campaign against this parasite was especially effective, wants the “last Guinea worm to die before I do.”

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/18/health/neglected-tropical-diseases-who/
___

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2017-04-19 03:19:41 (1 comments; 5 reshares; 34 +1s; )Open 

Gorgeous photolithographic depictions of slices of human brain.

http://www.gregadunn.com/self-reflected/

Gorgeous photolithographic depictions of slices of human brain.

http://www.gregadunn.com/self-reflected/___

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2017-04-18 22:46:08 (26 comments; 15 reshares; 90 +1s; )Open 

Democrats held both Congress and the White House for only two of the last 22 years. And yet, they were busy. Their salient trait is not to be “leftist,” – since fair-competitive markets always (that’s always) do better across DP administrations – but rather to be manic, scurrying around to address problems during their limited time in power. Hence, we should note the science-tech actions taken just during the 2009-2011 span.

Those include the CAFÉ increases in fleet efficiency standards that Republicans claimed would “destroy the US auto industry.” (Recall that just a year earlier, the GOP opposed the federal government making secured loans to GM and Chrysler (loans that were paid back), shouting let ‘em go under!”) Those efficiency standards made all our cars vastly more economical, saving drivers billions, while reducing pollution and all of it while US autos gotever-better, safer... more »

Democrats held both Congress and the White House for only two of the last 22 years. And yet, they were busy. Their salient trait is not to be “leftist,” – since fair-competitive markets always (that’s always) do better across DP administrations – but rather to be manic, scurrying around to address problems during their limited time in power. Hence, we should note the science-tech actions taken just during the 2009-2011 span.

Those include the CAFÉ increases in fleet efficiency standards that Republicans claimed would “destroy the US auto industry.” (Recall that just a year earlier, the GOP opposed the federal government making secured loans to GM and Chrysler (loans that were paid back), shouting let ‘em go under!”) Those efficiency standards made all our cars vastly more economical, saving drivers billions, while reducing pollution and all of it while US autos got ever-better, safer, more luxurious and cheaper in constant dollars… oh and while US carmakers made fine profits.

Likewise, several bills passed during those two years that so stimulated the sustainable energy markets that we now appear to be verging on the “solar singularity.” That is the moment when the incredible acceleration of sustainable power supplies (including wind) gains unstoppable momentum. More jobs are being created in solar than have been lost in coal, by an order of magnitude. See the stats; they are quite impressive,
http://www.the9billion.com/2017/04/12/solar-singularity/

Though I am still worried about resilience. A million solar homes in the US will shut down in the event of a power blackout, instead of providing islands of power for their neighborhoods. We should not have to wait for cheap battery packs, in order to fix this, when a $25 switch would suffice, in the short term.

But there’s more energy efficiency news, as TESLA Motors announces the soon-to-com unveiling of a project to make all-electric “semi” trucks to haul cargo with unprecedented efficiency. http://www.trueactivist.com/elon-musk-announces-plans-to-launch-all-electric-semi-truck-in-september/?utm_source=iNews-Readers&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=SNS+iNews+Highlights+for+April+17+2017

The troglodyte lords who are trying to drag us back into feudalism, while heaping scorn upon all of the fact and knowledge castes, don’t get it. If you guys succeed, you won’t like to see us when we’re mad. But you’re safe. Because you will fail. ___

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2017-04-18 18:18:59 (1 comments; 4 reshares; 29 +1s; )Open 

Today's posting asks two questions: "When was America Great?" and Is "Steve Bannon on his way out?" Yes they are connected. We'll see how, by looking past the surfaces that have everyone upset - the populist xenophobia, the minority baiting, even the War on Science - down to deeper layers of romanticism that will have many of you shouting "Godwin's Law!" Still, it is what it is. And we must deal with it.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/those-were-days-when-was-america-great.html

Today's posting asks two questions: "When was America Great?" and Is "Steve Bannon on his way out?" Yes they are connected. We'll see how, by looking past the surfaces that have everyone upset - the populist xenophobia, the minority baiting, even the War on Science - down to deeper layers of romanticism that will have many of you shouting "Godwin's Law!" Still, it is what it is. And we must deal with it.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/those-were-days-when-was-america-great.html___

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2017-04-17 17:31:25 (13 comments; 10 reshares; 90 +1s; )Open 

Seventy years of Pax Americana and a rising enlightenment civilization, based on science and fact and at least somewhat-mature argument, were never easy to maintain. Another seventy and we'd likely stabilize into something truly amazing and grownup -- perhaps able to solve the Fermi Paradox, by heading out into the galaxy.

But behind us lie 6000 years of feudalism in which secretive cheaters and thugs and razzle-dazzle artists wrecked every glimmering renaissance. And before that, 200,000 years of barely-above-caveman scratching in the dirt.

The feudalist oligarchs know this is their last chance to restore aristocratic-priestly rule. Spreading education and light will give us Star Trek, so they are acting hard, now, in an arc that stretches from Manilla and Siberia to Moscow (the center), Ankara, Tehran... and now our own captured White House.

"Donald Trump... more »

Seventy years of Pax Americana and a rising enlightenment civilization, based on science and fact and at least somewhat-mature argument, were never easy to maintain. Another seventy and we'd likely stabilize into something truly amazing and grownup -- perhaps able to solve the Fermi Paradox, by heading out into the galaxy.

But behind us lie 6000 years of feudalism in which secretive cheaters and thugs and razzle-dazzle artists wrecked every glimmering renaissance. And before that, 200,000 years of barely-above-caveman scratching in the dirt.

The feudalist oligarchs know this is their last chance to restore aristocratic-priestly rule. Spreading education and light will give us Star Trek, so they are acting hard, now, in an arc that stretches from Manilla and Siberia to Moscow (the center), Ankara, Tehran... and now our own captured White House.

"Donald Trump appears to have made a cynical calculation that he will not pay a high political price for being the most secretive president since Richard Nixon."
What? You expected me - as "Mr. Transparency" - to disapprove? Fact is, he has done us a favor by making things so stark, turning this whole thing into a massive IQ test.

You are among those being tested, my fellow citizens. If those in the Greatest Generation could pass their trials... we can pass ours.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/daily-202/2017/04/17/daily-202-what-does-trump-have-to-hide-secretive-white-house-unapologetic-about-clawing-back-transparency/58f411b3e9b69b3a72331e8e/?utm_term=.c78bc9cb58be___

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2017-04-17 02:05:53 (18 comments; 5 reshares; 47 +1s; )Open 


Speaking of economics, many are riled enough to start using America’s inherent economic power against this era’s plantation lords. The economic weapon with potential immediate impact? Boycotts. Oh, but boycotting whom?

It seems easy to target Trump properties. But all that will do is make the family sell hotel rooms to foreign governments and lobbyists even more unctuously than before. http://www.npr.org/2017/04/16/523960521/-grabyourwallets-anti-trump-boycott-looks-to-expand-its-reach

No, skip the symptom and go for the disease. It remains up to the nation to find some way to make the Fox News hypnosis model less profitable. Sure the boycott of Fox News advertisers is much, much harder for an average citizen than saying: “I won’t buy any Ivanka shoes or stay in a Trump Hotel!” Keeping track of a long list of Fox advertisers – and favoring their competitors – isfar more taxi... more »


Speaking of economics, many are riled enough to start using America’s inherent economic power against this era’s plantation lords. The economic weapon with potential immediate impact? Boycotts. Oh, but boycotting whom?

It seems easy to target Trump properties. But all that will do is make the family sell hotel rooms to foreign governments and lobbyists even more unctuously than before. http://www.npr.org/2017/04/16/523960521/-grabyourwallets-anti-trump-boycott-looks-to-expand-its-reach

No, skip the symptom and go for the disease. It remains up to the nation to find some way to make the Fox News hypnosis model less profitable. Sure the boycott of Fox News advertisers is much, much harder for an average citizen than saying: “I won’t buy any Ivanka shoes or stay in a Trump Hotel!” Keeping track of a long list of Fox advertisers – and favoring their competitors – is far more taxing of time and inconvenience. Moreover, there’ll be times when you just have no other good choice. Or picking the alternative will make a real price difference. Or when it would mean dropping your gym or AARP membership. So? Perfection and purity aren’t the aim! What matters is overall movement. http://foxnewsboycott.com/

This could be your most powerful tool as an individual American – after voting and political activism and helping to keep your own state and locality above the sinking US average. Especially if you form a little boycott club among facebook friends and share lists and help each other to stick to a diet.
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2017-04-17 01:28:19 (8 comments; 17 reshares; 74 +1s; )Open 

The Great Barrier Reef in Australia is recognized as the biggest living structure on Earth. Unfortunately, it's dying—with many portions facing no hope for recovery—thanks to back to back mass bleaching events.

https://futurism.com/scientists-announce-that-the-great-barrier-reef-is-officially-terminal/

The Great Barrier Reef in Australia is recognized as the biggest living structure on Earth. Unfortunately, it's dying—with many portions facing no hope for recovery—thanks to back to back mass bleaching events.

https://futurism.com/scientists-announce-that-the-great-barrier-reef-is-officially-terminal/___

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2017-04-15 23:31:36 (4 comments; 10 reshares; 54 +1s; )Open 

Evonomics is the fast-rising site where liberals and moderates in the commercial and academic worlds of economics offer spirited resistance to fanaticism. While the far-left and the entire-right seem hell-bent on betraying the system that brought us all this vast wealth and opportunity, moderates are rediscovering the founder of liberal economics, Adam Smith, whose monument we visited recently, in Edinburgh.

Smith - and the contributors of lively articles at Evonomics - knew that creative-competitive markets can only work when they are regulated to keep them flat-open and fair. 6000 years of cheaters have showed us that vast disparities of wealth no not lead to healthy market enterprise, but stifle it. (Try running a competitive sports league without "regulation.")

Smith never deemed socialism to be as much a threat to freedom or creative competition as its old and... more »

Evonomics is the fast-rising site where liberals and moderates in the commercial and academic worlds of economics offer spirited resistance to fanaticism. While the far-left and the entire-right seem hell-bent on betraying the system that brought us all this vast wealth and opportunity, moderates are rediscovering the founder of liberal economics, Adam Smith, whose monument we visited recently, in Edinburgh.

Smith - and the contributors of lively articles at Evonomics - knew that creative-competitive markets can only work when they are regulated to keep them flat-open and fair. 6000 years of cheaters have showed us that vast disparities of wealth no not lead to healthy market enterprise, but stifle it. (Try running a competitive sports league without "regulation.")

Smith never deemed socialism to be as much a threat to freedom or creative competition as its old and relentless enemy -- cheating by crony-oligarchs.

Come by Evonomics and see how many serious thinkers are offering up ammunition for our fight to restore and protect a fair and open and productively creative system. (I have a few articles there.)

If our parents in the Greatest Generation could stymie oligarchic cheaters, spurring lively market competition by keeping things relatively flat and fair, then can't we? These re-sets have to be made about once per US generation, and the plantation lords - desperate to prevent it - know that feudalism might be prevented permanently, if we perform just one more. Drop by and see how much serious thinking has gone into this notion of a new re-set. One that's positive-sum, giving us both a lively-competitive-creative market system and the fairness that's required for it to function.

http://evonomics.com
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2017-04-15 18:07:25 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 19 +1s; )Open 

A weekend posting -- on space! Terrific news and things to be proud-of. Great stuff! Enjoy it, while it lasts.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/space-near-and-long-term-plans.html

A weekend posting -- on space! Terrific news and things to be proud-of. Great stuff! Enjoy it, while it lasts.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/space-near-and-long-term-plans.html___

2017-04-14 18:19:10 (13 comments; 3 reshares; 44 +1s; )Open 

From the Global Post: "Writing from Moscow, Fyodor Lukyanov warns that Russia and the United States are not only back to their old and “normal” ways of confrontation, but could also clash militarily in Syria if the U.S. intervenes further. He is cynical about the impetus of the missile strike on a Syrian air base that boosted Trump’s presidential stature. “Having encountered challenges in implementing his domestic political agenda,” Lukyanov writes, “Trump decided to use foreign policy as an instrument for improving the political atmosphere around his administration.” Lukyanov further cautions against any perception that U.S. actions will force Russian President Vladimir Putin to rein in Syria’s President Bashar Assad: “For Trump, an agreement can only be reached from a position of strength. But for Putin, there can be no agreement under pressure. ... If pressure keeps growing, Russiawill respond in i... more »

From the Global Post: "Writing from Moscow, Fyodor Lukyanov warns that Russia and the United States are not only back to their old and “normal” ways of confrontation, but could also clash militarily in Syria if the U.S. intervenes further. He is cynical about the impetus of the missile strike on a Syrian air base that boosted Trump’s presidential stature. “Having encountered challenges in implementing his domestic political agenda,” Lukyanov writes, “Trump decided to use foreign policy as an instrument for improving the political atmosphere around his administration.” Lukyanov further cautions against any perception that U.S. actions will force Russian President Vladimir Putin to rein in Syria’s President Bashar Assad: “For Trump, an agreement can only be reached from a position of strength. But for Putin, there can be no agreement under pressure. ... If pressure keeps growing, Russia will respond in its own manner ― asymmetrically and sharply.”

Lukyanov is smart but nowhere near cynical enough. Think. Try to think about who benefits. Putin has had one victory and new asset that is more valuable than any other. He can see his Siberian Candidate President slipping away, as American immune systems - FBI investigations and leaks - threaten everything he's gained by controlling Donald Trump. He must preserve his queen and that is worth sacrificing a few very minor pawns at one end of a Syrian airbase.

Especially since this recent event let him also: (1) study our tomohawks under controlled conditions, (2) cement further ties with the Iranian Mullahs, and (3) unleash some Assad gassings as the pretext to make Trump look tough and this save Trump WHILE eliminating some of Assad's enemies.

Jeez, does it take a novelist to see what should be obvious?___

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2017-04-14 13:00:23 (18 comments; 15 reshares; 91 +1s; )Open 

A game changer? Announced: a water harvester that uses only ambient sunlight to pull liters of water out of the air each day in conditions as low as 20 percent humidity.

https://m.phys.org/news/2017-04-device-air-powered-sun.html

A game changer? Announced: a water harvester that uses only ambient sunlight to pull liters of water out of the air each day in conditions as low as 20 percent humidity.

https://m.phys.org/news/2017-04-device-air-powered-sun.html___

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2017-04-14 00:33:07 (2 comments; 4 reshares; 36 +1s; )Open 

Have a look at these delightful succulents whose bulbous leaves look like dolphins!
http://www.marthastewart.com/1514064/jumping-dolphin-succulents



Have a look at these delightful succulents whose bulbous leaves look like dolphins!
http://www.marthastewart.com/1514064/jumping-dolphin-succulents

___

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2017-04-13 18:35:57 (0 comments; 6 reshares; 35 +1s; )Open 

Oy! Now the news suggests he is being eased out, to make way for Jared. I had better talk about Steve Bannon while I can. Unless... he's still the Dark Lord and I had better say it, while there's still free speech... and electricity.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/dark-times-in-american-politics.html

Oy! Now the news suggests he is being eased out, to make way for Jared. I had better talk about Steve Bannon while I can. Unless... he's still the Dark Lord and I had better say it, while there's still free speech... and electricity.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2017/04/dark-times-in-american-politics.html___

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2017-04-11 23:11:24 (43 comments; 10 reshares; 102 +1s; )Open 

There is a word for this theater. "Potemkin." A Russian word for a completely faked sham. The entire "Syrian" thing is a put-on, staged to save Putin's biggest asset - D.Trump - from the growing consensus that he's under Moscow-KGB control. Come on! What other interpretation even remotely fits the facts?

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/donald-trump-russia-syria-feud-237119

There is a word for this theater. "Potemkin." A Russian word for a completely faked sham. The entire "Syrian" thing is a put-on, staged to save Putin's biggest asset - D.Trump - from the growing consensus that he's under Moscow-KGB control. Come on! What other interpretation even remotely fits the facts?

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/donald-trump-russia-syria-feud-237119___

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2017-04-09 22:40:33 (1 comments; 2 reshares; 23 +1s; )Open 

Going weekly for a bit. This new blog posting as about... space! Fantastic new discoveries! Great missions and mind-bogglers! And those who want our vigorous outward reach to come to an end.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/those-seven-planets-what-universe.html

Going weekly for a bit. This new blog posting as about... space! Fantastic new discoveries! Great missions and mind-bogglers! And those who want our vigorous outward reach to come to an end.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/those-seven-planets-what-universe.html___

2017-04-09 10:11:59 (60 comments; 8 reshares; 102 +1s; )Open 

Seriously. Someone should shout from the rooftops how the winners in this "punitive attack" were Donald Trump, Assad and Vladimir Putin. The loser was the US and our military and the Syrian victims who were gassed in order to provide this pretext for a distraction from DT's Russia troubles.

Seriously. Someone should shout from the rooftops how the winners in this "punitive attack" were Donald Trump, Assad and Vladimir Putin. The loser was the US and our military and the Syrian victims who were gassed in order to provide this pretext for a distraction from DT's Russia troubles.___

2017-04-06 21:23:07 (52 comments; 4 reshares; 49 +1s; )Open 

The head of Icarus Interstellar asks: "When did we start under-appreciating the Moon as a jump spot to the planets in our solar system - and beyond??"

There is a simple answer. The moon is an utterly useless (in the short term) sterile place without a single thing humanity wants or needs, and any effort to colonize there (in the near term) will savagely undermine our efforts to become a prosperously successful interplanetary species. The moon is a potential deathtrap to all our dreams of accessing wealth out there...

...which is why the moon is the chief space goal of the Republican Party, run by moguls whose vast sunk investments in Earth resource extraction would be killed by sustainables, solar, and missions to asteroids that offer access to vast riches. Reiterating: the moon is drooled over by republicans who want us to get nowhere, wasting time and billions joining the... more »

The head of Icarus Interstellar asks: "When did we start under-appreciating the Moon as a jump spot to the planets in our solar system - and beyond??"

There is a simple answer. The moon is an utterly useless (in the short term) sterile place without a single thing humanity wants or needs, and any effort to colonize there (in the near term) will savagely undermine our efforts to become a prosperously successful interplanetary species. The moon is a potential deathtrap to all our dreams of accessing wealth out there...

...which is why the moon is the chief space goal of the Republican Party, run by moguls whose vast sunk investments in Earth resource extraction would be killed by sustainables, solar, and missions to asteroids that offer access to vast riches. Reiterating: the moon is drooled over by republicans who want us to get nowhere, wasting time and billions joining the Chinese, Russians, Europeans, Indians and others eager to put dusty footprints where we've (yawn) already been.___

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2017-04-04 20:59:14 (9 comments; 11 reshares; 45 +1s; )Open 

This midweek posting is a big one, carefully appraising Yale Prof David Gelernter, who is a leading candidate to be President Trump's Science Advisor -- whose spectacularly ironic love and then hate relationship with science is both astonishing and deeply chilling, as well as emblematic of what has happened to the formerly intellect-rich American right.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/in-defense-of-enlightenment-science.html

This midweek posting is a big one, carefully appraising Yale Prof David Gelernter, who is a leading candidate to be President Trump's Science Advisor -- whose spectacularly ironic love and then hate relationship with science is both astonishing and deeply chilling, as well as emblematic of what has happened to the formerly intellect-rich American right.

http://davidbrin.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/in-defense-of-enlightenment-science.html___

2017-04-04 10:10:46 (4 comments; 0 reshares; 21 +1s; )Open 

The Berggruen Institute seeks to identify and nurture new ideas that have the potential to shape a better human future... committed to science as a source of knowledge and innovation and to philosophy as a source of critical perspective and deeper understanding of the place and role of humanity in the world.

Each year they offer the Berggruen Prize, a $1 million award that recognizes humanistic thinkers whose ideas have helped us find direction, wisdom, and improved self-understanding in a world being rapidly transformed by profound social, technological, political, cultural, and economic change.

http://berggruen.org/prize

The Berggruen Institute seeks to identify and nurture new ideas that have the potential to shape a better human future... committed to science as a source of knowledge and innovation and to philosophy as a source of critical perspective and deeper understanding of the place and role of humanity in the world.

Each year they offer the Berggruen Prize, a $1 million award that recognizes humanistic thinkers whose ideas have helped us find direction, wisdom, and improved self-understanding in a world being rapidly transformed by profound social, technological, political, cultural, and economic change.

http://berggruen.org/prize___

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2017-04-02 22:23:33 (32 comments; 3 reshares; 39 +1s; )Open 

Daniel Dennett says: “Staying afloat in today’s flood of information means understanding the subtle relationship between transparency and trust,” the famous philosopher of consciousness writes. “And it is not what you might think ― the more transparency, the more trust. The reality is the opposite: when everything is exposed, all information is equal, and equally useless. When no one knows things that others don’t know, and there are no institutions or practices that can establish and preserve credibility ― as is threatened today with the new dominance of peer-driven social media ― then there is no solid ground for a democratic discourse.”

Seldom have I ever read such a specious incantation and arm-waved counter-factual nonsense. We can now see that it is not just the mad right that rails assertions that are blatantly and obviously false... declaring "because that soundsillogical and opp... more »

Daniel Dennett says: “Staying afloat in today’s flood of information means understanding the subtle relationship between transparency and trust,” the famous philosopher of consciousness writes. “And it is not what you might think ― the more transparency, the more trust. The reality is the opposite: when everything is exposed, all information is equal, and equally useless. When no one knows things that others don’t know, and there are no institutions or practices that can establish and preserve credibility ― as is threatened today with the new dominance of peer-driven social media ― then there is no solid ground for a democratic discourse.”

Seldom have I ever read such a specious incantation and arm-waved counter-factual nonsense. We can now see that it is not just the mad right that rails assertions that are blatantly and obviously false... declaring "because that sounds illogical and opposite to sense, that must mean I am such a clever fellow to point it out!"

It never seems to occur to Dennett that trust comes from reducing the toxic smog of lies. And the only way to eliminate lies is the method of science. Disproof, accompanied by reduced credibility for the liars.

True, this systematic approach is not working as well, right now. That is deliberate. Ancient incantation methods have been used to wage outright war on every profession that uses fact-based falsification, including journalism, teachinch, economics, especially science... and now the military officer corps. All are actively warred upon, by portions of the left and by the entire mad right.

Thank you, Daniel D, for joining this mob.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/fake-news-transparency-trump_us_58dd8a54e4b0e6ac7093b460?cbmfae49z0gs24kj4i&section=us_world

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2017-04-02 21:34:07 (5 comments; 4 reshares; 37 +1s; )Open 

Elon Musk is backing a brain-computer interface venture that was founded to allow humans to keep up with the advancements made in machines. The interface is intended to work by augmenting that which makes us human: our brains.

https://futurism.com/elon-musk-just-launched-a-company-to-merge-your-brain-with-a-computer/


Elon Musk is backing a brain-computer interface venture that was founded to allow humans to keep up with the advancements made in machines. The interface is intended to work by augmenting that which makes us human: our brains.

https://futurism.com/elon-musk-just-launched-a-company-to-merge-your-brain-with-a-computer/
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2017-04-02 18:57:03 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 18 +1s; )Open 

A fun review of Chasing Shadows!

https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/books/2017/04/01/science-fiction-lovers-explore-new-worlds-brave-and-otherwise.html

A fun review of Chasing Shadows!

https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/books/2017/04/01/science-fiction-lovers-explore-new-worlds-brave-and-otherwise.html___

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2017-04-02 18:10:27 (2 comments; 2 reshares; 47 +1s; )Open 

When Spaxex launches the Falcon 9 Heavy - with three Falcon 9 cores (the Falcon 27?) - it will attempt to land and re-use all three first stages., Elon says. Hey ULA, you better get cracking.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/science/space/2017/03/31/things-we-learned-spacex-elon-musk-falcon9-reusability-kennedy-space-center-florida-ses10/99869966/

When Spaxex launches the Falcon 9 Heavy - with three Falcon 9 cores (the Falcon 27?) - it will attempt to land and re-use all three first stages., Elon says. Hey ULA, you better get cracking.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/science/space/2017/03/31/things-we-learned-spacex-elon-musk-falcon9-reusability-kennedy-space-center-florida-ses10/99869966/___

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2017-04-02 03:07:15 (5 comments; 5 reshares; 22 +1s; )Open 

Wisconsin Public Radio aired a 12-minute segment asking me to explain how self-righteous indignation can be an addiction, perhaps as fierce - and potentially devastating to our society - as heroin. Years ago I gave a talk about this at the National Institute on Drugs and Addiction, and the notion has been gaining traction. Alas, too slowly to help ease us out of this (deliberately provoked) era of stunning, indignant fury.

Listen in, if you are willing to look at your own angry "high" in a new light!

http://www.ttbook.org/listen/94501



Wisconsin Public Radio aired a 12-minute segment asking me to explain how self-righteous indignation can be an addiction, perhaps as fierce - and potentially devastating to our society - as heroin. Years ago I gave a talk about this at the National Institute on Drugs and Addiction, and the notion has been gaining traction. Alas, too slowly to help ease us out of this (deliberately provoked) era of stunning, indignant fury.

Listen in, if you are willing to look at your own angry "high" in a new light!

http://www.ttbook.org/listen/94501

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