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If President Trump’s Cabinet nominees are confirmed, women and nonwhites will hold five of 22 cabinet or cabinet-level positions, a smaller percentage than the first cabinets of Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George Bush. Politico sat down with Press Secretary Sean Spicer after his second press briefing today; the newly announced Skype seats in the press room seem to have been suggested... last week, by NBC's Chuck Todd. Former CIA director and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said today that President Trump somehow "forgot that he was president of the United States" when he gave a speech at the CIA on Saturday. The former Executive Director of Anti-Immigrant Hate Group FAIR joined the Trump Administration today as chief of staff at U.S. Customs and Border Protection. In Germany, Angela Merkel advisors say Germany has 'given up' on Donald Trump acting like a President. Today is the fourth day of the Trump Administration.
The Trouble with Quantum Mechanics - "The introduction of probability into the principles of physics was disturbing to past physicists, but the trouble with quantum mechanics is not that it involves probabilities. We can live with that. The trouble is that in quantum mechanics the way that wave functions change with time is governed by an equation, the Schrödinger equation, that does not involve probabilities. It is just as deterministic as Newton's equations of motion and gravitation. That is, given the wave function at any moment, the Schrödinger equation will tell you precisely what the wave function will be at any future time. There is not even the possibility of chaos, the extreme sensitivity to initial conditions that is possible in Newtonian mechanics. So if we regard the whole process of measurement as being governed by the equations of quantum mechanics, and these equations are perfectly deterministic, how do probabilities get into quantum mechanics?" (via) [more inside]
Neil Cicierega has released a new mashup album, and it's called Mouth Moods, and you should start listening to it immediately and never stop.
Previously: Mouth Sounds; Mouth Silence.
Previously: Mouth Sounds; Mouth Silence.
Crowds in hundreds of cities around the world gathered Satuday in conjunction with the Women’s March on Washington. New York Times compiles photos from a LOT of marches into a single page illustrating the vast numbers and global reach of the sea of pink hats. [more inside]
Nell Carter, the Broadway and 80s sitcom superstar who died too young in 2003 after a life of many highs and lows, was born today in 1948 . In 1992, ABC, in partnership with Elizabeth Taylor, presented "New Light: A Call to Action in the War Against AIDS" (1992 New York Times article) and Ms. Carter sang a perhaps odd choice: Steve Winwood's "Back in the High Life Again", which she dedicated, against her family's wishes, to her gay brother Dr. Bernard Taylor, who had died of the illness in 1989. (poster's note: if this interests you in the least, please forgive the poor quality and make it to the end around 3:48 because it is worth it) [more inside]
Jaki Liebezeit, drummer and founding member of the influential German band Can, has died from pneumonia at the age of 78. Some examples of his playing: Yoo Doo Right; Oh Yeah; Halleluwah; a drum solo. [more inside]
Video game movies usually rank from least bad to absolute worst, but all that could be about to change, with cat collection game Neko Atsume getting a live action movie. Official Japanese site.
Assuming no last-minute surprises, while the White House transitions the son of a Leòdhas emigrant will take the Oath and become the next POTUS in Washington D.C. today (security gates open at 6am, ceremony begins at 11:30am), as part of the 58th Presidential Inauguration (events began yesterday). Chief Justice John Roberts will administer the oath; the Lincoln Bible and a family bible will be used. Clarence Thomas will administer the Oath of Office to Vice President-elect Mike Pence. Many Democratic lawmakers are boycotting the inauguration; security is tight, and selfie sticks, drones and drums are not permitted. Some artists are performing at the inauguration and after events. The day after, the Women's March takes place in D.C. and many other cities and towns. Channels showing the inauguration, the 2009 and 2013 ceremonies, and Obama's 2008 victory speech.
Voting Should Be Mandatory "The evidence is mixed on whether compulsory voting favors parties of the right or the left and some studies suggest that most United States federal election results would be unchanged. But all that misses the point because it overlooks that compulsory voting changes more than the number of voters: It changes who runs for office and the policy proposals they support." - Waleed Aly, New York Times [more inside]
Carnegie Mellon University has developed an AI to play poker, Libratus. They are having it face off versus four poker pros, and halfway through the competition, Libratus is winning. The game is heads-up, no limit poker, which pits two players face to face, and doesn't constrain their betting, making the game an aggressive mix of math, psychology, and strategy. [more inside]
On Friday a white man wearing black punched American white nationalist Richard Spencer in the face on camera. While discussions of ethics and history have been springing up, the Internet has also decided that this needed to be set to music. Tim & Eric have also composed a piano ballad about the events. [more inside]
Trains race to and fro with no consideration of train loads. Trains shunt cars for fun. Trains respond to the whims of fat men in top hats. Trains are bricked up alive into tunnels to force them to work for the crony capitalist nightmare that is the island of Sodor. A subversive anti-capitlist screed or a good faith depiction of what happens when captial and aristocracy are too closely entwined or a classic depcition of false conciousness? And why are we running steam trains in this day and age? What the hell is going on on this island? [more inside]
The Resident Evil Games Ranked From Worst to Best [PC Gamer] “As the series that popularized the survival horror genre, Resident Evil has attempted to sustain its hold on the elusive zombie shooting crown since its inception in 1996. Suffice it to say, Resident Evil hasn’t maintained a keen, constant rule over the genre, blasting further off into bizarre, convoluted lore dumps and Matrix-worthy action sequences as the series grew in scope and ambition. Through reinvention after reinvention, Resident Evil games may not always be great, but they’ve always been fascinating, curious objects. And it’s because of that wild experimentation that Resident Evil still has a firm grip on us, redefining the genre and forcing the entirety of game design to respond—hell, Dead Space was going to be System Shock 3 before Resident Evil 4 came out. Now we’re just around the corner from another series reinvention in Resident Evil 7 [YouTube] [Trailer], a more grounded first-person return to survival horror, borrowing ideas from games that may have formerly looked to Resident Evil for inspiration. We’ve come full circle.” [more inside]
Maggie Roche, co-founder of the idiosyncratic and influential sister trio The Roches, passed away on Saturday, January 21. Her sister and bandmate Suzzy Roche announced the death on Facebook and said the cause was breast cancer. NYT Obituary. [more inside]
"Who? Although many would recognise the work of Peter Hujar – his famous photograph of Susan Sontag reclining, for example, or his affecting shot of transgender actress Candy Darling on her deathbed – the American photographer and his impressive legacy are frequently overlooked." Thirty years after his death, Peter Hujar is finally getting his due: a traveling retrospective, organized by the Morgan Library & Museum. [more inside]
2017 marks 30 years since acid was put on (commercial) wax, if* you're crediting Phuture's Acid Tracks as the first Acid (House) song/EP. BBC Radio 1 recently celebrated this history with the first Essential Mix of 2017 by DJ Pierre, one third of Phuture, the Chicago group that recorded an epic 12 minutes of Roland TB-303 knob-twiddling and spread the acid madness via Ron Hardy in The Music Box. For more acid in the mix, B. Traits preceded that set and played a 2 hour set acid, with a 3rd hour by Luke Vibert, who stated (via a track title) "I Love Acid." [more inside]
In seven days, Donald J. Trump is due to be inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States of America. What happens next? [more inside]