As a reader of this blog, please promise me you’ll avoid using SMS authentication if you have the option for one your important services such as banking, email, phone, etc.
How The CIA Overthrew Iran’s Democracy In 4 Days (NPR) – NPR podcast Throughline published (back in Feb. 2019) this look at the history of US’s CIA role in the fall of the Iran Democracy. Even more important for Americans to understand given the politics of the last few days. Don’t just read the article, listen to the 38-minute podcast.
The most awesome space images of the decade (Vox.com) – Some truly stunning images from space. This one from the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission, landing on the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, still blows my mind. We captured that from the surface of a comet.
With 2020, one of my big goals is to be more of a maker. Of which, this blog is a big part of it for me. But also, I want to do more physical stuff. Adam Savage is one of my major sources of motivation and his one day builds series on YouTube is a constant source of enjoyment for me. Here’s the newest video which is much more of a how-to than his normal videos, which are as he puts it more of a “here’s what I did” sort of video.
IRS Reforms Free File Program, Drops Agreement Not to Compete With TurboTax (ProPublica.org) – “The IRS announced significant changes Monday to its deal with the tax prep software industry. Now companies are barred from hiding their free products from search engines such as Google, and a years-old prohibition on the IRS creating its own online filing system has been scrapped.”
Two fascinating links I came across nearly simultaneously.
Center for Policing Equity – A new organization I was introduced to by Adam Savage, via his YouTube video of favorite things for 2019. This is an organization dedicated to partnering with police organizations to remove bias from them. The organization’s tagline is “Data Science for Justice.” I need to do more research before I officially recommend them for donations, but definitely interesting.
Second, a video by Tom Scott, who is among my favorite ‘infotainment’ channels on YouTube. I find his videos highly informative and entertaining. This video is no exception. As a coder I had seen the ISO date functions, but I didn’t know what it was and had never used them. Now I know.
52 things I learned in 2019 – Tom Whitwell shared some interested tidbits from the year. I’d seen a number of these, but others were completely new to me.