Change your phone screen to grayscale

Combating addiction:

‘Tristan Harris a former “design ethicist” at Google, says today’s candy colored interfaces are addictive. One way to make your phone less appealing, it to make the display grayscale….’

Via Boing Boing

The war over apostrophes in Kazakhstan’s new alphabet

‘There’s a fascinating linguistic fight brewing in Kazakhstan, due to the president’s decision to adopt a new alphabet for writing their language, Kazakh.

The problem? It’s got too many apostrophes!

For decades, Kazakhs have used the Cyrillic alphabet, which was imposed on them by the USSR back in the 30s. Now that Kazakhstan has started moving away from Russia — including making Kazakh more central in education and public life — the president decided he wanted to adopt a new alphabet, too. He wanted it based on the Latin one.

But! Kazakh has many unique sounds that can’t be easily denoted using a Latin-style alphabet.

Kazakhstan’s neighbors solved that problem by following the example of Turkey, where they use umlauts and phonetic symbols. But Kazkhstan’s president didn’t want that — and instead has pushed for the use of tons of apostrophes instead.

Kazakhstan’s linguists intellectuals think this is nuts…’

Via Boing Boing

How Anaesthesia Works

Hint: not the same as putting you to sleep:

‘inhibits “communication between neurons across the entire brain in a systematic way that differs from just being asleep. In this way it is very different than a sleeping pill.”…’

Via Big Think

Philip Roth, crabby literary lion, has wonderfully vicious thoughts on Trump

 

Philip Roth“…A massive fraud, the evil sum of his deficiencies, devoid of everything but the hollow ideology of a megalomaniac.”

‘Roth, when asked if he could have predicted today’s political and cultural landscape responds that, “No one I know of has foreseen an America like the one we live in today. No one (except perhaps the acidic H. L. Mencken, who famously described American democracy as “the worship of jackals by jackasses”) could have imagined that the 21st-century catastrophe to befall the U.S.A., the most debasing of disasters, would appear not, say, in the terrifying guise of an Orwellian Big Brother but in the ominously ridiculous commedia dell’arte figure of the boastful buffoon.” He adds, “How naïve I was in 1960 to think that I was an American living in preposterous times! How quaint!”…’

Via Salon

Narcissistic Buffoon Falsely Claims His Approval Among Black Americans Has Doubled

In the same week that his racism is reaffirmed by his
‘shithole’ comment:

‘The tweet — half misleading and half downright false — demonstrates how inaccurate information can trickle to the president’s social media, which is then is viewed by millions of people on Twitter and Facebook.

Survey Monkey’s results, provided to The New York Times, show that Mr. Trump’s approval ratings among black Americans actually declined from 20 percent in February 2017, his first full month in office, to 15 percent in December. (This is consistent with polling from the Pew Research Center and Reuters.)….’

Via New York Times