PhD Students Should Think About Publishing From Day One


A solid advice for PhD students.

So how do you publish? You have to be thinking about this from Day One. Learning about what makes for a good (= publishable) journal article, learning about how to submit articles, participating in workshops and courses that lead to feedback that creates journal articles, being around faculty and graduate students who are publishing journal articles, learning the prestige rankings for journals, taking article-sized projects to conferences, attending “how to publish” panels, understanding the risk-reward tradeoff of “starting high” or “starting low” (both in general and for specific projects), and being willing to undergo the harsh and helpful review project…all of that matters.

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Paul Musgrave

Iceland’s battle against digital extinction


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Iceland’s struggle to save its Icelandic language.

For centuries, the Icelandic language has held off influences from foreign lingua franca like Danish and English. But today, there is a new threat: technologies that can only be operated in foreign languages, even at home. Apple’s voice assistant,Siri, for example, does not understand Icelandic (although Google Translate does, thanks to an Icelandic engineer who worked at the California-based company, according to legend). Half of the world’s 7,000 languages are at risk of disappearing within this century.

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Caitlin Hu — Quartz

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Living Our Own Truman Show


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To me it does seem like we are getting closer and closer to living The Truman Show.

One (real-life) reviewer described the series Teen Mom 2 similarly, writing “The show doesn’t resemble a show. It’s more like boring old life, strenuous and unyielding.” The Teen Mom franchise, which follows very young women raising children with limited support, has millions of viewers. It has even been granted qualified praise by some scholars for possibly reducing teen pregnancy rates. Several of the Kardashians—famously described by Kim to Barbara Walters as “famous for being ourselves”—have also given birth and raised children on their shows. And of course, there is our president, a former reality star who sets himself against “fake news” and whom no one seems to be able to stop watching. In a number of ways, including our desire to watch “real people” and our willingness to see the lives of infants and young children unfold on camera, we have accepted the morality of The Truman Show.

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Devorah Goldman — Public Discourse

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Section 377: A British legacy from which India has finally broken free


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In a landmark decision in July 2009, the Delhi High Court decriminalised homosexuality among consenting adults on grounds that it violated Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution of India.

Kirby writes that over 80 countries of the world had or still have laws against homosexuality. Over half of these were those that were at some point in time governed by the British. The Indian Penal Code of 1860, often referred to as the Macaulay Code, after Thomas Babington Macaulay who was its principal author, was the foremost jurisdiction that criminalised homosexuality in India. Its impact was such that it was copied in several other British colonies like Fiji, Singapore, Malaysia, and Zambia. Section 377 of the code, that was followed up on at the Supreme Court today read as following: “Whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to ten years and shall also be liable to fine.”

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Adrija Roychowdhury — The Indian Express

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The Malicious Use of Artificial Intelligence: Forecasting, Prevention, and Mitigation


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We have been hearing of AI a lot. A deeper look into it.

The ability of many robots to be easily customized and equipped with dangerous payloads lends itself to a variety of physical attacks being carried out in a precise way from a long distance, an ability previously limited to countries with the resources to afford technologies like cruise missiles . This threat exists independently of AI (indeed, as mentioned above, most robots are human-piloted at present) but can be magnified through the application of AI to make such systems autonomous. As mentioned previously, nonautomated drone attacks have been conducted already by groups such as ISIS and Hamas , and the globalized nature of the robotics market makes it difficult to prevent this form of use.

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Poetry and Simplicity The Odes of Pablo Neruda


Pablo Neruda wrote a total of 225 odes. The number stands as a pledge of alliance with a lyrical form he adored. He was also fond of other poetic forms (the sonnet, for instance), but as a practitioner of verso libre, unrhymed poetry, the ode was unquestionably the closest to his heart. He discovered it in his youth, becoming hypnotized by its fresh, elastic, invigorating freedom. His early readings of Horace, Pindar, Ovid, and Catullus left a deep impression on him. And he admired the way Romantics such as John Keats not only addressed universal themes in their odes but humanized those themes by turning them—Love and Psyche, for instance—into interlocutors. Neruda’s odes are his direct, uncensored dialogues with nature. And they are politically charged.

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Ilan Stavans — FSG | Work in Progress

The Scooter Economy


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Indeed, the only thing that could make the experience better — for riders and for everyone else — would be dedicated lanes, like, for example, the 900 miles worth of parking spaces in San Francisco. To be sure, the city isn’t going to make the conversion overnight, or, given the degree to which San Francisco is in thrall to homeowners, probably ever, but that is particularly a shame in 2018: venture capitalists are willing to fund the entire thing, and I’m not entirely sure why.

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Stratechery

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