Monday, March 25, 2024

Our World in Data: More people care about climate change than you think

 Excerpt from a Hannah Ritchie climate perception reality check (her latest book, Not the End of the World, is also a timely reality check):

People across the world, and the political spectrum, underestimate levels of support for climate action.

This “perception gap” matters. Governments will change policy if they think they have strong public backing. Companies need to know that consumers want to see low-carbon products and changes in business practices. We’re all more likely to make changes if we think others will do the same.

If governments, companies, innovators, and our neighbors know that most people are worried about the climate and want to see change, they’ll be more willing to drive it.

On the flip side, if we systematically underestimate widespread support, we’ll keep quiet for fear of “rocking the boat”.

This matters not only within each country but also in how we cooperate internationally. No country can solve climate change on its own. If we think that people in other countries don’t care and won’t act, we’re more likely to sit back as we consider our efforts hopeless.

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Third Act + some personal updates

 Hey, is this thing still on?...

A few quick personal updates:

  • I recently retired -- had some great opportunities to apply conceptual and logical data modeling over the last ~4.5 years at Bose and CarGurus, but decided it was time for a new chapter
  • I'm revisiting blogging and other info resource sharing options -- restarting this blog, my Medium quasi-blog, and/or other options
  • I'm kinda drowning in high-quality info resources and trying to get into a new routine for reading, harvesting, and sharing
In the meantime, here's a good restart post to consider: Third Act Endorses Joe Biden for President; excerpt:

"In some ways, it’s almost pro forma for Third Act to endorse Joe Biden for another term as president. Our tens of thousands of supporters, organized in chapters across the U.S., campaign to protect the climate, and to protect our democracy, the two issues where Biden may present the greatest contrast with his opponent.

Donald Trump pulled America out of the Paris climate accords; Joe Biden not only put us back into the international talks but instructed every agency to consider the climate in its work, passed the Inflation Reduction Act to build clean energy across the nation, and just weeks ago ignored the shrieks from Big Oil and paused the granting of new permits for liquefied natural gas, as big a blow as any president has ever delivered to dirty energy. On the democracy front, Donald Trump attempted a coup to overturn the results of the 2020 election; Joe Biden has tried throughout his career to expand voting rights and to protect the civil rights of every American. 

A vote is not a valentine, it’s a chess move.
– Rebecca Solnit

Even in the places where we want Biden to pursue different policies––Gaza, Mountain Valley Pipeline, Willow project––we think his opponent would be far worse. And our members find dozens of other places—from a woman’s right to control her own body to a teacher’s right to pick books for his classroom—where we favor Biden’s leadership. We bear constantly in mind our board member Rebecca Solnit’s advice that “a vote is not a valentine, it’s a chess move.” And in 2024 that move for us is obvious: four more years for Joe Biden, to advance the work he’s already done to heal our planet, our economy, and our polity. So we’ll not just vote for Joe; we’ll work hard to see that Trumpism is defeated."

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

About this blog: some updates

After nearly 20 years of weekday morning tech news scans and blogging1, I've decided it's time to change my daily routine. I've been dedicating 1 - 2 hours most weekday mornings to tech-related news foraging, and I've enjoyed sharing resources I've considered noteworthy (and/or snark-worthy)2, but I'm increasing my focus on conceptual data modeling3 and climate/political activism, and reducing my daily news-foraging time allocation4.

As a result, the frequency of posts on this blog will remain low for the foreseeable future. For now, here are some other resources (most available via email newsletters) you may find useful for daily news updates:

Tech and science

Political and general news

I'll post occasional updates as I run across other useful resources.

For now: thanks for reading over the years -- more to follow, but with fewer than 7 +/- 2 posts per weekday…

1: My first Reality Check post was 19991027, but I changed hosting service providers a couple times before ending up on Blogspot in early 2002.

2: I may increase the post frequency again if I run across a browser extension or iOS/macOS sharing extension that significantly streamlines the posting process; Blogger has frankly been a bit of a nuisance since Google broke its BlogThis browser extension many months ago (without such an extension, every post requires several [error-prone…] copy/paste/format actions). Windows Live Writer (created by JJ Allaire and his Onfolio team) was by far the best blogging tool I've run across, but alas Microsoft acquired, eventually open-sourced, and effectively killed WLW many years ago.

3: I started a second blog on Medium several months ago -- -- with a focus on everyday conceptual data models, but the response thus far has been less than encouraging (I would like to thank both of the readers who made it all the way through my Apple Podcasts post, for example; this blog has typically had 15 - 20K page views per month, but I've always assumed a lot of those were from Russian bots etc.). I'm going to resume model-related posts on Medium and will post links here as well, when I do.

4: The overall shift to social media (especially Facebook and Twitter) and apps/services such as Medium have also changed my news-foraging modus operandi over the years. I've also been mindful of the increasingly common use of paywalls, since I can't assume all readers have access to all sources (or to aggregators such as Apple News+).

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Light posts this week FYI

Back to my normal schedule 10/1

Friday, September 20, 2019

Apple’s location tracking Tags detailed in new leak | The Verge

Check the full article for an Apple Tag rumor roundup
"Details about Apple Tags, the company’s Tile-like location trackers you can attach to things like your keys, bag, or bike, have leaked again. The latest screenshots come courtesy of MacRumors, and show a new “Items” tab, that replaces the “Me” tab in the new Find My app that rolled out yesterday with the global release of iOS 13.

”Keep track of your everyday items,” reads the Items tab when clicking in. “Tag your everyday items with B389 and never lose them again.” B389 is the internal Apple codename for Apple Tags, first mentioned by 9to5Mac back in April. The screenshots were sourced from an internal build of iOS 13 released in early June, according to MacRumors."
Apple’s location tracking Tags detailed in new leak | The Verge

Maybe wait to install macOS Safari 13...

... if you use the Evernote Web Clipper; the OneNote macOS Safari extension was also disallowed (along with many others).

From an Evernote email message:

Startups still love Slack but big companies are bailing | Recode

A more constrained Slack (at least in the enterprise)
"The share of large organizations that use or plan to use Slack next quarter has declined slightly to 33 percent while Teams has increased to 65 percent, according to preliminary surveys of company chief information officers and other leaders from market research firm ETR. So far for next quarter, ETR has measured responses from 845 of the world’s biggest organizations, including those in the Forbes Global 2,000, Forbes’ list of the 225 biggest private companies, and the US government.

ETR data also showed that 13 percent of large companies plan to decrease their Slack spending next quarter compared with 1 percent that plan to do so on Teams.

The general consensus among these big companies is that Slack may be a better product, but not so much better that it warrants paying for extra software on top of Microsoft Office, which they already require for business staples like Excel, Word, and PowerPoint."
Startups still love Slack but big companies are bailing | Recode