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Pocket reading list - Part 4

Most of the time I try write from my memory, write about what I remember of the article or write bout what I attribute the article to. This time I had to actually open the links and see what the article was about or it's main theme. I guess a couple of stories will seep through and I can't really expect to retain all that I've given, given how much I've read. Also, sometimes, what I write about the article might be completely different from what it is. I apologize if you dig into an article expecting something from how I described it. I apologize for that in advance. But I still think you should read them. I found them interesting. Just saying. Anyway, I guess this brings the total to 40 so far.

Justine Sacco Is Good at Her Job, and How I Came To Peace With Her - The first of my list of favorites on Pocket. Everybody says dumb things from time to time and in some cases, if you're unlucky, the dumb thing you say might be broadcast to a million people and eventually get you fired. This is an account of how one journalist came to peace with the person whose momentary lapse of judgement he wrote about, eventually getting her fired.

Beyond a boundary - I, personally, maintain that I want to be stay in academia not just because I like learning new things and because I like teaching but also because I don't think I can hold a 9-5 job. I would prefer being able to set my own time table. This is an interesting account of how academics choose to not get stuck in 40-hour week jobs actually end up spending way more than that.

Fatal Distraction: Forgetting a Child in the Backseat of a Car Is a Horrifying Mistake. Is It a Crime? - Something I didn't even think was possible but in hindsight, should've expected. Baby seats aren't ubiquitous in India but I think they are mandated by law in the US and i guess there's a good probability that at some point or the other, a person will forget their baby in the backseat of their car and lock them in. They will be lucky if someone notices the baby or if they come back to the car soon. This is an account of what happens if you're too late.

Get That Life: How I Became a NASA Engineer Despite My Disability - An inspiring account of a woman who overcame her hearing disability to work for NASA and the challenges she faces at her job given her disability.

The Amazing Sky Calendar That Ancients Used to Track Seasons - Another reason I would like to seriously study historical artifacts and accounts. Our ancestors got a lot of things right and it would do us good if we learnt about their ways of life, maybe it will help us lead a better life. Even if it doesn't help our society immediately, you can't but marvel at human ingenuity at times.

Atul Gawande: What ails India's public health system - An author who is receiving high praise for his books talks about the Indian public health system and what he thinks can be changed to make it better.

Methane flares in the Arctic dwarf the Golden Gate Bridge - I had read about dissolved hydrocarbons (methane) in the Arctic glaciers and the kind of environmental effects it the glaciers melted releasing these hydrocarbons (greenhouse gases) into our atmosphere. This on the other hand was an interesting look at how methane is detected in the first place.

The Fermi Paradox - Well, given my interest in astronomy, I have been involved in enough discussions of aliens and what not. But the Drake equation was as far as it went. We never bothered thinking this far ahead regarding our own civilization and the big picture.

The Laborers Who Keep Dick Pics and Beheadings Out of Your Facebook Feed - Only recently did I learn that twitter was (probably) the only social network that didn't censor nudity. I never noticed it but there were no nude pictures or gory videos on my Facebook feed, other than for the rare link from a hacked account. And keeping the news feed clean isn't something that can be automated. Well, not completely at least. I don't know if computer vision algorithms are advanced enough to differentiate between naked pictures and otherwise. It was surprising to learn that this task is (also) outsourced to contractors, where workers sift through the numerous pictures posted on facebook everyday to tag them as inappropriate. It's a bit graphic at times but it's an interesting read nevertheless.

The Oculus Rift Game That's So Real It Nearly Destroyed Me - I haven't played a video game in a very long time but I do long for them from time to time. I watch youtube game playthroughs and look for new games and what not. And when it comes to game experience, I guess VR is the next thing and the most immersive games have got to be horror games! I wonder how many people will die playing Five nights at Freddie's with a VR headset.

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