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The Isoblog. Posts

Stockholm’s congestion charge vs. Asthma

Inside Science reports on the congestion charge in Stockholm (Link to actual paper). Stockholm always has been a city with relatively clean air and PM10 and NOx levels well below limits. The introduction of a congestion charge in 2007 reduced air pollution in Stockholm by approximately 10 percent. Yet, after several years, Asthma in children 0-5 years old is reduced of 45 percent.

“It appears that what they’ve found is these cumulative effects of pollution,” he said.

The article also reminds city policy makers that a congestion charge can only work if a viable public transport infrastructure is already in place.

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BBC Two: Back in Black, Terry Pratchett

Back in Black

The BBC says:

When the writer Sir Terry Pratchett died in 2015, he was working on one last story – his own. But Terry’s Alzheimer’s meant he never got to finish it.

This poignant and humorous film starring Paul Kaye as Terry finally tells the story of this hugely popular author, creator of Discworld, whose books have sold over 85 million copies worldwide. Back in Black reveals Terry’s road to success was not always easy, from his troubled schooldays to being dismissed by literary critics, to his battle with Alzheimer’s. But knighted by the Queen, adored by millions of fans and with a legacy of 41 much-loved novels – Terry Pratchett is still having the last laugh.

This is happening next Saturday, at 9pm UTC.

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Journalismus fördern (german)

(Article about German things is in German) Chat so:
H> Verzeih, aber eine Brainstorming-Frage. Welchen Journalismus/Aktivismus will man unterstützen?
H> #PressOn scheint mir eine sinnvolle Aktion zu sein. Eine amerikanische Zeitung will ich nicht abonnieren, außerdem sind die dortigen Bürger schon selbst gut dabei.
H> Frage ist, welche Zeitung im Sinne der guten Sache hierzulande “systemrelevant” ist. Spiegel, c’t und Guardian abonniere ich bereits. Hamburger Abendblatt habe ich als einzige Regionalzeitung, die nervt aber. Einzelne Podcaster kriegen kleine Summen.
H> Als Alternativ-Aktivismus bin ich bei CCC, Netzpolitik, digiges, GFF mit Spenden dabei.Wie siehst Du das? Es sieht ja so aus, dass flattr oder andere Micropayment-Systeme gescheitert sind.
H> Und die Leute verstehen jetzt, dass sie die für ihre Zwecke relevanten Journalisten/Aktivisten direkt fördern müssen.

Isotopp> Netzpol, digiges habich auch, c’t hab ich aufgegeben, weil die nix so richtig rein online machen und ich kein Papier mehr brauche, ditto Linuxmag. Direkte Förderung – hatte Krautreporter, das war so mittel sinnvoll, weiß den derzeitigen Status nicht,
habe Golem Abo, die machen tolle Arbeit, das auch verlängert.

Isotopp> Es fehlt ein Mechanismus “statt Flattr” und “besser planbar”.

Was meint Ihr?

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Mercy instead of The Law

Neulandrebellen with Frauke voll der Gnade (german language article) explains the difference between the subject (of the crown) and a citzen: Where the subject has to plead for mercy by throwing themselves at the feet of their ruler, the citzen has rights, and the law, speaking to the state as an equal. The article then goes on to show how an important part of the neoliberal agenda in “pushing back the state” is also pushing back human rights, reducing having them to an act of mercy.

Starting point for the line of reasing was AfD’s Frauke Petry, who was trying to re-frame the german constitutionally grounded right for Asylum (and because it’s a right you can sue for it) into an act of mercy. But while this is a starting point, the article goes on to paint this as part of a larger picture, and a systematic agenta. “Less state” also – and always – means less rights, and hence more dependency on Mercy. For everybody, not just refugees.

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Trump Dump

A linkdump.

 

 

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Mandatory Widevine (Browser Video DRM) in Chrome

Changes are coming to Chrome. Not all of them are good.

For example the ability to actually view the details of a TLS certificate in Chrome has been moved far away into a hard to reach Developer menu.

Most Chrome plugins have been disabled and removed, and the chrome://plugins page will go away very soon (Chrome 57 and later). The remaining Plugins cannot any longer be disabled (Bug report). This will also silently re-enable disabled plugins.

One of them is the Widevine video DRM plugin, and that is widely seen as very problematic, for security and legal reasons.

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git Improvements for Monorepos

Microsoft has been doing things to git, they report.

[W]e […] have a handful of teams with repos of unusual size! For example, the Windows codebase has over 3.5 million files and is over 270 GB in size. The Git client was never designed to work with repos with that many files or that much content. You can see that in action when you run “git checkout” and it takes up to 3 hours, or even a simple “git status” takes almost 10 minutes to run. That’s assuming you can get past the “git clone”, which takes 12+ hours.

What Microsoft is doing here is called a Monorepo approach. It not insane, has many advantages and is being discussed at length at Dan Luu, and is also in use with Facebook and Google and in many other places. But git is running into problems handling very large Monoreports, as discussed in an article at Atlassian.

What Microsoft GVFS does, according to their paper, is addressing the issues git has instead of working around them. And that is an awesome thing.

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