January 20, 2017 / From the Editor
Every Friday, we publish a short list of a few articles that have caught our …
January 30, 2015
Each Friday we compile a list of interesting links and articles our editors find from across the web. Here’s what’s catching our eye this week.
Wikipedia bans some editors from gender-related articles:
Wikipedia’s arbitration committee, the highest user-run body on the site, has voted to ban a number of editors from making corrections to articles about feminism, in an attempt to stop a long-running edit war over the entry on the “Gamergate controversy”. The editors, who were all actively attempting to prevent the article from being rewritten with a pro-Gamergate slant, were sanctioned by “arbcom” in its preliminary decision. While that may change as it is finalised, the body, known as Wikipedia’s supreme court, rarely reverses its decisions.
The number of New England Patriots’ fumbles lost is nearly statistically impossible:
In light of the ball deflation scandal currently consuming the New England Patriots, football data analyst Warren Sharp looked at the Patriots’ recent fumble statistics and found some startling results. A slightly different version of this post first appeared on Sharp’s own site. It is reprinted with his permission. On Wednesday, I investigated whether the New England Patriots outperform expectations in bad weather and found that, yes, they do. Then I remembered this remarkable fact: The 2014 Patriots were just the third team in the last 25 years to never have lost a fumble at home! The biggest difference between the Patriots and the other two teams that did it was that New England ran between 150 and 200 more plays this year than those teams, making the Patriots stand alone in this unique statistic. Based on the desire to incorporate full-season data (not just home games, as a team theoretically would bring “doctored footballs” with it on the road) I performed the following analysis.
SkyMall’s place in American history:
One day in 1989, accountant and entrepreneur Bob Worsley got an idea. On a flight from Seattle to Phoenix, he was paging through a glossy in-flight gift catalog called Giftmaster when he was struck by two things: how unappealing the products were (“6-foot pencils and fish ties,” he recalled later) and how easy it would be to order them using the seatback telephone—assuming there was anything he wanted to buy.
For a long time, artificial intelligence was little more than science fiction — now it’s now just a matter of time until it becomes reality. The boom of computing capabilities have seen the power of servers multiplied a billion times over in the span of just 31 years, making it likely that an artificial intelligence superior to our own will emerge in the coming decades.
TOJ contributor Amy Frykholm discusses the creed at Christian Century:
Long before I was confirmed in the Episcopal Church, I told my priest that I had no problems with the Nicene Creed except for those two little words at the beginning, “We believe.” I loved reciting “God from God, light from light, true God from true God.” I liked saying “one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church” because that claim seems to fly in the face of all our disagreements and declare an impossible but longed-for unity. I joined the church I did because of its connection to historical Christianity, but also because it was drawn together less by theological doctrine than by the worship tradition of the Book of Common Prayer. I felt the church would challenge and root me, but also offer freedom.
The City University of New York urges faculty not to address students with gendered salutation:
“Mr.,” “Mrs.” and “Ms.” are being shown the door at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. In a new policy that has sparked debate among academics, school staffers have been advised to refrain from using gendered salutations in correspondence with students—and instead use a student’s full name, according to an internal memo sent out earlier this month.
Chuck Norris fought capitalism with VHS tapes:
No matter what your stance is on file sharing, the commercial downsides to pirating movies and television shows are obvious. Writers and directors see their work inherently devalued, and the companies financing the projects see less return — potentially impacting their desire to fund future projects. Objectively speaking, piracy is bad. Except when it changes the world.
An interview with Christian Wiman:
I had recently read Christian Wiman’s latest poetry collection, Once in the West, for the first time when I glanced at my housemate’s copy of The Library of America’s American Sermons one Saturday afternoon while eating lunch. I stopped on Phillips Brooks’s 1890 sermon “The Seriousness of Life” because of the seriousness of its title.
The NFL fines for Marshawn Lynch for grabbing his groin then turns around and sells portraits of the photo:
Earlier this week, the NFL fined Marshawn Lynch for his now-trademark groin grab gesture after doing it in the NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers.
This Budweiser commercial for the upcoming Super Bowl may make you tear up:
David A. Garner