Cosmic Appalachia

Cosmic Appalachia

Posts tagged “new york times”

Scientists Warn of Rising Oceans From Polar Melt -

“Today we present observational evidence that a large sector of the West Antarctic ice sheet has gone into irreversible retreat,” Dr. Rignot said in the NASA news conference. “It has passed the point of no return.”

Scary, scary, scary.

In Texas Town, Rebuilding Begins in the Rubble

I get that what happened in Boston was horrible and tragic and awful, and I applaud the brave and fast efforts of the Boston PD and the FBI to track down the bombing suspects. But over a dozen people, including first responders, are dead in West, Texas.  The fertilizer plant explosion that killed them destroyed 50 homes within a 5-block radius (that’s like the entirety of some of the smaller towns where I’m from), registered 2.4 on the Richter scale, and flung glass over 45 miles away.  60 people are still unaccounted for, and the damage is nearly unfathomable, the kind of decimation one would expect after a massive tornado.  The people in this area really need their nation’s help, and I think they deserve at least a mention in the midst of this media frenzy, with so many people watching the news this evening.

You guys, ladies suck at technology and the New York Times is ON IT.

Radia “Mother of the Internet” Perlman and the ghosts of RADM Grace Hopper, Ada Lovelace and every woman who worked in technology for the past 150 years frown upon you, sir. Women may have been invisible, but the work we did laid the groundwork for more visible advancements now credited to more famous men.

“Men are credited with inventing the internet.” There. Fixed it for you.

I ragequit this article like, 10 times, and couldn’t get past that awful opening line. But eventually, I managed to put down my frying pan and unbunch my apron, and I sat down on my princess tuffet and asked a man to help me read the whole thing.

Justice Dept. Sues Apple and Publishers Over Ebook Pricing, Violation of Antitrust Laws

From my end of things, I have to say that this controversial lawsuit is defending consumers from a very real trend that is designed to make consumers pay ridiculous prices for a product that costs almost nothing to make.  Apple and a whole cadre of publishers conspired to charge utterly appalling prices - in many cases the price of a hardback edition or more - for their e-books in an attempt to force Amazon to abandon their lower pricing so Apple had a better chance to dominate the book-selling market.  The end result is that the publishers make record profits for a virtually free product while consumers, libraries, and universities get screwed over. 

Publishers have always been unkind to libraries (They naturally oppose something that provides their wares as a free service to tax-paying citizens.), charging sinful fees for universities and libraries to subscribe to necessary periodicals while not paying the professors and librarians who contributed to those publications nearly enough to justify the price of the journals.  Now libraries who have joined online consortia to share and lend out e-books are being forced to pay for those overly priced files again and again to keep them in circulation.  It’s a disturbing trend that is damaging our nation’s educational system in unpardonable ways, and at a time when libraries and schools simply can’t afford to lose ridiculous amounts of money to greedy corporations.