UppsÀgningen av Elsevieravtalet

Men varför ett sĂ„dant huvudlöst tilltag, frĂ„gar sig vĂ€n av ordning? Det riskerar ju att med omedelbar verkan frĂ„n avtalets upphörande den första juli strypa bibliotekens tillgĂ„ng till mĂ„nga av vĂ€rldens frĂ€msta vetenskapliga tidskrifter. […] Svaret Ă€r enkelt: förhandlingarna med Elsevier har strandat dĂ€rför att den affĂ€rsmodell som de, i likhet med mĂ„nga andra av de stora förlagen, tillĂ€mpar och dĂ€r lĂ€rosĂ€tena fĂ„r betala tredubbelt, Ă€r helt orimlig.”

Facebook closed 583m fake accounts in first three months of 2018

Five-hundred-and-eighty-three million!!

Today a sparrowhawk landed on the lowest branch on the tree nearest me, about 1.5 meter from where I was standing, and looked me right in the eyes before taking flight again. I am sure this would have had some profound meaning, had I lived a couple of hundred years ago. Now I am afraid that I am a little uncertain as of how to interpret this omen. Cool encounter nonetheless.

VĂ„r i VĂ€rmland.

Trying to quit Facebook. Still trying.

Eight years have passed since I first wrote about trying to quit Facebook. Little has changed about my attitudes to the social network, but—like a perennial nicotine quitter—I am still on it. I am however closer to quitting than ever. My last post was six months ago, and I feel no urge jump back in. For birthdays and the odd Facebook group too damn practical not to follow, Facebook is, however, still useful. But I don’t read the feed anymore. It doesn’t make me happy. Instead it sometimes makes me angry and, at other times, … jealous? (Really? The analytical part of me find this proposition so silly that it cannot be the case. And still…) Occasionally I sneak a peek when someone has mentioned me, and I may even indulge in a “like” (and a birthdays wish or two, while there) but that is it. Check in again in another eight years to see how I’m doing.

When Homer envisioned Achilles, did he see a black man?

Homer’s Greek warriors probably didn’t look much like David Gyasi, but nor did they look like Brad Pitt. […] The final irony is that the ancient Greeks, so often thought of in Europe and North America as self-evidently white, would have been staggered at this suggestion.

Have had a slight headache ever since we came to the summerhouse for the (extended) weekend. Turns out, the instant coffee I have been drinking (as if that wasn’t bad enough) is caffeine free. The horror!

Yaniv Leviathan, Google Duplex lead, and Matan Kalman, engineering manager on the project, enjoying a meal booked through a call from Duplex.

Duplex calling to book the above meal:”

(Google AI Blog).


En liten bit Uppland i VĂ€rmland.

New Science from Jupiter.

Valborg again. Noticeably less people in town this year. Carolinabacken at three o’clock was however crammed as usual.

‘The next best thing to a sexual fantasy’ – hanging out at London’s all-night bagel bakery

In the spring of 1997—five years after this video was made—I lived at the very south end of Brick Lane in Attlee House at Toynbee Hall, as an exchange student attending London Guildhall University. At least once a week, late at night when everything else was closed, we sent a party of volunteers (the hungriest among us, I imagine) all the way to the other end of Brick Lane to get bagels. ‘Always open’ was a rare thing at the border between the city and the east end in those days. (And, yes, salmon and cream cheese was my favourite too.)

The last living human link to the 19th century is gone

S och MP överens om höghastighetstĂ„gen – nu bjuds Alliansen in

Jag har inget emot snabbtÄg men med tanke pÄ att vi inte ens klarar av att köra lÄngsamma tÄg kan jag inte vara annat Àn skeptisk till det hÀr förslaget. Visa att ni kan köra de tÄg som redan finns innan ni satsar en massa pengar pÄ att bygga ut kapacitet för nya tÄg, vilka ni annars dÄ rimligtvis inte heller kommer kunna köra.

Phoenicia: An imaginary friend to nations in need of ancestors

‘Phoenician’ was just a generic label invented by ancient Greek authors for the Levantine sailors they encountered in their own maritime explorations. Although some of these Greek writers entertain a mild stereotype of these Phoenicians as rather cunning or tricksy, they never use the term as a description of a distinct ethnocultural community. The historian Herodotus, for instance, talks frequently – and with considerable admiration – about the Phoenicians, but he never gives an ethnographic description of them as he does for other groups including the Egyptians, Ethiopians and Persians.

So Smith didn’t just get the Phoenicians wrong; he got them perfectly backwards. The Phoenicians don’t illustrate the ancient ethnic origins of modern nations, but rather the modern nationalist origins of at least one ancient ethnicity” (Josephine Quinn).

18°C yesterday. Finally!

Maybe it’s time to start thinking of tree as a verb, rather than a noun – tree-ing, or tree-ifying. It’s a strategy, a way of being, like swimming or flying, even though to our eyes it’s happening in very slow motion” (Rachel Ehrenberg).

Carl Sagan’s tools for critical thinking and detecting bullshit


Det hĂ€r kan inte ignoreras lĂ€ngre: utanför GĂ€vle finns en elvĂ€g. Jag har aldrig sett den anvĂ€ndas sĂ„ jag lutar Ă„t att det hĂ€r helt enkelt “bara” Ă€r vĂ€rldens bĂ€sta “practical pun” … om det nu Ă€r ett uttryck.

A victim of winter.

Beyond the Bitcoin Bubble

“But what if the military had kept GPS out of the public domain? Presumably, sometime in the 1990s, a market signal would have gone out to the innovators of Silicon Valley and other tech hubs, suggesting that consumers were interested in establishing their exact geographic coordinates so that those locations could be projected onto digital maps. There would have been a few years of furious competition among rival companies, who would toss their own proprietary satellites into orbit and advance their own unique protocols, but eventually the market would have settled on one dominant model, given all the efficiencies that result from a single, common way of verifying location. Call that imaginary firm GeoBook. Initially, the embrace of GeoBook would have been a leap forward for consumers and other companies trying to build location awareness into their hardware and software. But slowly, a darker narrative would have emerged: a single private corporation, tracking the movements of billions of people around the planet, building an advertising behemoth based on our shifting locations. Any start-up trying to build a geo-aware application would have been vulnerable to the whims of mighty GeoBook. Appropriately angry polemics would have been written denouncing the public menace of this Big Brother in the sky” (Steven Johnson).

Another day, another viva.