Weekend Link Roundup

September 03, 2017

Cole Haan Tali Bow Sandals
▪ I received a few requests for cute sandals recommendations after posting about the Tory Burch Bryce Sandal (sizes now incomplete), and wanted to share my thoughts on the Cole Haan Tali Bow Sandals, which are now on sale through discounters like Nordstrom Rack, Amazon Fashion, and 6PM. I picked up a pair on sale some time ago, hoping it would prove as comfortable as the Cole Haan Tali Bow Flats (reviewed here) that I love and own multiple pairs of. The sandals turned out to be just okay comfort-wise, and I can understand why the shoe's reviews are mixed. The Tali sandals run 1/4 size small length-wise, and half a size small in width, so size up unless you have narrow feet. The shoes offer virtually no support (the footbeds are slightly padded but rigid; there is a wedged version that may work better for those with high arches), and the Y-styled straps may cause discomfort for some initially. It's a polished take on flip flops and is well-constructed, but it suffers all of the usual issues that plague sandals.

Costco Is Playing a Dangerous Game With the Web (Bloomberg): "Costco’s reluctance to embrace the web is understandable. Its warehouse club business model is based on selling a limited assortment of bulk-size food and household items at low prices, alongside an ever-changing selection of general merchandise—everything from margarita machines to kayaks. This creates an in-store treasure hunt experience. Both elements are costly and difficult to replicate online."

Why You Can't Download All the Streaming Media You Want (Wired): "What the world really needs is a DVR for the internet. That may happen sooner than you think, but until then, that limitless library of all the world's media comes with one big asterisk: Bandwidth required."

To Survive in Tough Times, Restaurants Turn to Data-Mining (The New York Times): "Information culled and crunched from a wide array of sources can identify customers who like to linger, based on data about their dining histories, so the manager can anticipate your wait, buy you a drink and make the delay less painful."

Dr Con Man: the Rise And Fall of a Celebrity Scientist Who Fooled Almost Everyone (The Guardian): "Over the years, this possibility [bone marrow transplant] has generated great excitement and a huge amount of research. Yet, for the vast majority of such treatments, there is little solid evidence that they work."

Researchers Taught AI to Write Totally Believable Fake Reviews, And the Implications Are Terrifying (Business Insider): "While fake reviews might look identical to a real one to a human, there are subtle differences that a computer program can detect, if it knows to look — notably the distribution of characters (letters — a, b, c, d, and so on). The fake reviews are derived from real reviews, and there is some information lost in the process. The fake reviews prioritise fluency and believability — so less noticeable features like character distribution take a hit."

Drink Seltzer, Live Forever (Eater): " What differentiates seltzer from plain old water are the ephemeral qualities of smell and texture, and they begin to dissipate as soon as you pop the tab. Like Swiss cheese, it’s a product that’s defined as much by what’s not there than what is: Seltzer is nothingness, bottled and branded."

The Myth of American Universities as Inequality-Fighters (The Atlantic): "... America’s top universities are largely closed to the poor, merely helping well-off students remain well-off. The best schools for helping low-income students become high-income graduates are accepting fewer and fewer kids from poor families."

Yes, Google Uses Its Power to Quash Ideas It Doesn’t Like—I Know Because It Happened to Me (Gizmodo): "Google started out as a company dedicated to ensuring the best access to information possible, but as it’s grown into one of the largest and most profitable companies in the world, its priorities have changed. Even as it fights against ordinary people who want their personal histories removed from the web, the company has an incentive to suppress information about itself."

The Joel Osteen Fiasco Says A Lot About American Christianity (Buzzfeed): "We do not know what to do with people who do not deal well with suffering. Evangelical Christians and those who follow the prosperity gospel are different in many ways, but alike in this important one: Neither has developed a full and attractive understanding of why people suffer and how to care for them when they do. Part of the reason evangelicals who support Trump have been so heavily criticized is that they subscribe to a religion that is meant to care for the poor, the marginalized, and the suffering, yet their politics often leave care of the most vulnerable to the whims of private institutions, which creates a gap. A church that lacks a theology of suffering — an Americanized, feel-good, eternally positive church like Osteen’s — will invariably come under fire for failing to do one of its most important jobs."

How the Dollar Stays Dominant (The New Yorker): "In reality, there has never been much counterfeiting in the U.S. Last year was typical: about sixty-four million dollars’ worth of counterfeit currency was seized by the Secret Service, nearly half of which came from one operation in Peru. There is more than a trillion dollars’ worth of paper currency in circulation, which means that, in any given year, counterfeit bills represent five one-thousandths of one per cent of the total."

The Overcommitted Organization (HBR): "Across the world, senior managers and team leaders are increasingly frustrated by conflicts arising from what we refer to as multiteaming—having their people assigned to multiple projects simultaneously. But given the significant benefits of multiteaming, it has become a way of organizational life, particularly in knowledge work. It allows groups to share individuals’ time and brainpower across functional and departmental lines ... Multiteaming also provides important pathways for knowledge transfer and the dissemination of best practices throughout organizations."

Romney, Clinton and Others Counsel a Panicked Political Reporter on Fatherhood (The Washington Post): "From the various politicians and D.C. denizens I spoke with, it’s clear that today, the smartphone is the greatest impediment to being a good parent."

Surviving This Summer on the Internet (Wired): "Our lives are powered, to a lesser or greater degree, by the internet. There is no offline ... Every August, I make a point of reflecting deeply on my use of technology. This year, I’ve realized that coming to terms with my use of social media is not about moving away from the internet. It’s about finding new ways of moving toward people."


For sale news, please check this post, which I plan to update through Monday.

Have a great long weekend, everyone!

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