Web Excursions 2021-04-17

🌟 [Post of The Day] I Called Off My Wedding. The Internet Will Never Forget

  • Did I want to see the photo again? Not really. Nor do I want to see the wedding ads on Instagram, or a near-daily collage of wedding paraphernalia on Pinterest, or the “Happy Anniversary!” emails from WeddingWire, which for a long time arrived every month on the day we were to be married. (Never mind that anniversaries are supposed to be annual.) Yet nearly two years later, these things still clutter my feeds. The photo widget on my iPad cycles through pictures of wedding dresses.

  • Now that our memories are digital, though, they are incessant, haphazard, intrusive.

  • When Foursquare held its first hackathon in February 2011, Wegener and Wong cobbled together software that would notify Foursquare users of their check-ins from one year earlier.

    • focused on developing the concept further, into an app that would come to be called Timehop.

  • Over the next several years, other popular apps started to include their own features that automatically reminded people of their digital histories.

    • Facebook being, of course, the most obvious and influential: In 2015 it launched On This Day, after noticing that people were often looking back at old photos and posts.

    • In 2016, Apple added a Memories tab to its Photos app with the release of iOS 10.

    • Three years later, Google added a feature that showed old photos at the top of the page. It’s called—wait for it—Memories.

  • The human brain is constantly editing memories to incorporate new information and, in some cases, to cope with trauma.

  • I had opted to use WeddingWire instead of the Knot after reading reviews of the most popular websites for managing wedding vendors.

    • I hadn’t realized that WeddingWire and the Knot had merged under the same private equity firm, along with the Bash and the Bump. Now I wanted it all to vanish.

    • A customer service rep for WeddingWire told me that accounts can be deactivated but never permanently deleted.

    • This is “in case the user ever wants to come back to WeddingWire for whatever reason.” (I’ll be eloping next time, thanks very much.)

  • That day, leaving Pinterest and walking back to my office, I realized it was foolish of me to think the internet would ever pause just because I had.

    • The internet is clever, but it’s not always smart. It’s personalized, but not personal. It lures you in with a timeline, then fucks with your concept of time.

    • It doesn’t know or care whether you actually had a miscarriage, got married, moved out, or bought the sneakers. It takes those sneakers and runs with whatever signals you’ve given it, and good luck catching up.

  • I want a chisel, not a sledgehammer, with which to delete what I no longer need.

    • I don’t want to have to empty my photo albums just because tech companies decided to make them “smart” and create an infinite loop of grief.

    • That feels like a fast path to emotional bankruptcy, a way to “rip out so much of ourselves to be cured of things faster than we should,” as the writer André Aciman put it.

    • “To feel nothing so as not to feel anything—what a waste.” There it is: What a waste. Not wasted time, even if that is also true; that would be too cynical. A waste of potential joy.

  • The path won’t be linear. It never was. But we as humans are remarkably good at hatching new worlds from the tiniest pixels. We have to be.


Let’s remember netbooks - The Verge

  • The $399 Eee PC 701 originally ran a custom Linux operating system that reviewers loved.

    • Microsoft did some Microsoft maneuvering, and by January 2008 the Eee PC was running Windows XP instead.

  • Asus had put out at least 20 different models of Eee PC in 2008 alone.

  • The netbook explosion was all the more odd because every netbook had the same basic specs,

    • as Microsoft charged more for a standard non-Starter Windows license if a computer had anything more than

      • a 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor,

      • 1GB of RAM, and a

      • 160GB hard drive.

    • So it was all colors and screen sizes, really.

  • All to run a deeply-annoying version of Windows, on a computer that no one was even remotely claiming could replace a primary PC.

    • By the end of it all, as the chips inevitably got more powerful, enough laptop vendors were telling Joanna that their new netbook-like computers weren’t netbooks that she started calling them “notbooks.”


谁是文科生 – 扯氮集

  • 知识分类非常像建立一棵树,目录嵌套结构

    • 随着知识的继续大爆炸,各种学科交叉产生新的学科,这种结构越来越显得局促

  • 在吐槽学科体系并试图重新归类之时,不妨先想一想这样一个问题: 知识的目的为何?我们为什么要不断地追求新知?

  • 所有的知识,都为了寻求,并达到真善美。

    • 真,是可以用理性来解决的。

    • 大致上,人类已经承认了美和理性无关,所以在“美”这个问题上,科学相当的没有市场。

    • 我们发明了各种理性工具来试图处理“善”。很遗憾,这个理念式的东西,至今没有太好的理性办法。

  • 所谓的理科,大多数都在处理“真”的问题;文科,其实本来并不处理“真”的问题。经典的文史哲三个文科,文学历史哲学。哲学的目标是善,文学的目标是美。历史呢?历史其实是先求真,再在真的基础上讨论善。

  • 但今天有相当多的文科开始理科化。比如,社会学叫成了社会科学,政治学叫成了政治科学。

    • 这是对科学这个理性主义的顶礼膜拜。它暗含的意思就是:理性解决一切,科学即是真理。

    • 诡异的事是这样的:科学即是真理这句话恰恰是违反科学精神本身的。

  • 今天这个时代,真正的文科生已经很少了——这就是所谓知识分子已经死了。

    • 顶尖的文科生,是需要天赋的。一个缺少天赋的文科生,会很容易活到中下层去。

    • 顶尖的理科生,也是需要天赋的。但一个缺少天赋的理科生,依然可以活到中层乃至中上层去。[Note: Citation needed. End Note]

  • 我们在大量动用所谓理性的方法来处理“善”,试图让善这个议题套路化、公式化、科学化,试图可以依样画葫芦一般有个葫芦。

  • 人类在历史上最狂妄的时代,让哈耶克不得不大声疾呼。恐怕,至今,我们依然狂妄。

See also “房价太高逼走年轻人”央行重磅论文火了:应全面放开生育!

  • 4月14日,央行官方微信发布工作论文,直指我国面临的人口严峻形势,直指应该全面放开和鼓励生育。我国要认清人口形势已经改变,要认识到人口红利当时用得舒服,事后是需要偿还的负债;要认识到教育和科技进步难以弥补人口的下降。

  • 工作论文表示,一个城市房价太高,把他们都逼走了,何谈创新。这是深圳过去超越香港的主要经验,未来也有可能成为限制其长远发展的障碍。要清楚发达国家消费率高有历史原因,其力图改变、但回天无术,因此不要以此为学习的榜样。

  • 论文表示,重视理工科教育,东南亚国家掉入中等收入陷阱原因之一是文科生太多。

  • 主要观点如下:

    • 应全面放开和大力鼓励生育

    • 房价太高把年轻人都逼走了,何谈创新?

    • 东南亚掉入中等收入陷阱部分原是文科生太多

    • 发达国家消费率高有历史原因,不要以此为榜样

    • 养老改革要么降低养老金标准,要么多付出劳动