29 December 2014

Health Kick: 1 year update

A year ago, in the wake of Christmas over-indulgence and an 88kg body mass, I started my 2014 Health Kick. This is my one year update. My weight today was 76.3kg. I decided to post an update after a year because the statistics on weight loss are pretty stark: only around 21% of overweight people can lose 10% of their body weight and then keep the weight off for a year. ... Read more

29 December 2014


In 2007, consumer groups asked the FTC to come up with a “Do Not Track” list, which would work like the “Do Not Call” list. Naïve Internet researchers then proposed a “Do Not Track” header for the web. The idea was that users would set a preference in their web browser; the browser would then send a “Do Not Track” (DNT) flag each time it fetched a web page. Advertisers would then voluntarily be good and not track the user. ... Read more

29 December 2014

Deconstructing “race science”

After I posted a quote from Ta Nehesi-Coates about The Bell Curve, a poster asked (paraphrased): OK, so that study is flawed, but how do we know that the various races are intellectually equal? My answer is basically that “race” doesn’t correspond to any systematic genetic difference that might mean anything when compared to measured intelligence, assuming we could even define and measure intelligence. But I feel like that answer needs more unpacking and detail around it, so here goes. ... Read more

23 December 2014

Communication breakdown

Two innocent police officers were murdered in New York last week. However, something about the official statement from the NYPD really troubled me. ⁂ « A [New York] Daily News investigation found that at least 179 people were killed by on-duty NYPD officers over the past 15 years. Just three of the deaths have led to an indictment in state court. In another case, a judge threw out the indictment on technical grounds and it was not reinstated. ... Read more

21 November 2014

The Silicon Valley startup as Ponzi scheme

Scientific American’s June issue included an article talking about Ponzi schemes, and how our economy is rife with them. One example they gave was the Silicon Valley startup: A simplified example illustrates how this process works—and how it can take on the attributes of a Ponzi. A start-up offers workers a low wage, less, in fact, than the dollar value of what a worker produces. Hence, with each worker, the firm generates some profit. ... Read more

© mathew 2017