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Richard A. Chance

Good morning.

In case you missed it

North Korea might be hiding a pig catastrophe. African swine fever has reportedly spread across the country, Bloomberg reports. If left unchecked, the epidemic may spill over into South Korean and Chinese farms.

Kim Jong Un May Be Hiding a Hog Apocalypse From the World

I came across this recently, and unfortunately it’s little surprise. Though it places North Korea in an even worse hole with regard to food. African Swine Fever has been the proverbial Black Death for so many Asian pig farms, with the need to kill off horrifically large amounts of pigs - to the tune

I came across this recently, and unfortunately it’s little surprise. Though it places North Korea in an even worse hole with regard to food. African Swine Fever has been the proverbial Black Death for so many Asian pig farms, with the need to kill off horrifically large amounts of pigs - to the tune of millions - trying to curb the epidemic. With raising pigs as one of the few ways North Korean’s can feed themselves or earn money, it makes a devastating problem worse.

China is suffering from this on a catastrophic level as well, with China accounting for the vast lion share of total pork consumption world wide. Despite the aforementioned efforts to halt the epidemic, it presses forward.

Not to change the general tone of the story, however if you’ve ever dealt with pigs first hand, they’re clearly very intelligent and emotionally complex animals. They’re smarter and more cagey than most often realize. “Because China” did an excellent documentary short speaking with a large Chinese pig rancher operating in mainland China. When speaking about his having to kill his pigs en mass for this reason, it brought him to tears, and it definitely wasn’t just because of his investment losses in that otherwise very lucrative domestic Chinese pork market.

This could actually be an opportunity for the US to bring DPRK to the negotiating table. With such crippling food shortages, the hermit kingdom could maybe for one last time arm twisted into pulling back its nuclear rhetoric in response for food aid.

But from a food security standpoint, this disease

This could actually be an opportunity for the US to bring DPRK to the negotiating table. With such crippling food shortages, the hermit kingdom could maybe for one last time arm twisted into pulling back its nuclear rhetoric in response for food aid.

But from a food security standpoint, this disease could affect the entire Pacific eastern seaboard (Japan, ROK, Taiwan, Philippines, Vietnam) where Pork forms a major chunk of the diet if sufficient quarantine measures are not put in place.

Fortnite has ended—or so it seems. After an elaborate stunt in which the game's universe appeared to collapse into a singularity, Fortnite is no longer playable and its livestreams have gone dead, CNET reports.

Fortnite season 11 event ends with a cosmic explosion and is now gone

So the theory I’ve seen out there is that the new map requires the servers to go down and they turned it into a brilliant marketing move. Might even be down for a whole day or two.

The screams OMG OMG OMG in our house were hilarious. I saw the final moments and then blackness. Then my son went outside to ride his bike with his friends so thanks, Fortnite.

The universal thought for millions of players after the shock of the singularity wore off: “Wow, feels good to blink.”

A gutsy and creative move. For an already ravenous base of players, it only raises the appetite and desire for the next iteration. Not many can get away with a play like that, but Fortnite can.

Quartz Members: What comes after the iPhone?

Can Apple do it again? The iPhone turned Apple from a successful computer company into the world’s most profitable consumer electronics operation. But its success could also spell Apple’s undoing.

Can Apple do it again?

Apple is at crossroads. It revolutionized the way we communicate with the iPhone nearly 13 years ago, but its longtime cash cow has started to waver. Apple has a host of new bets in the works, some that could also change the world as the iPhone did. But will any of them actually be able to do it?

Apple’s streaming service is surrounded by questions. We know that Apple TV+ will cost $4.99, that it’ll launch on Nov. 1 with eight original series, and that it won’t have ads. But most of the rest is still a mystery.

Trying to dominate TV is like nothing Apple has ever done before

It is smart to offer the service at $5/month...

I am not convinced that Apple will dominate original content out of the gate. It would depend heavily upon personnel. Everyone loves to festoon Netflix and Amazon with developmental praise but from what I’ve seen, most of their best content is leftovers

It is smart to offer the service at $5/month...

I am not convinced that Apple will dominate original content out of the gate. It would depend heavily upon personnel. Everyone loves to festoon Netflix and Amazon with developmental praise but from what I’ve seen, most of their best content is leftovers from things developed elsewhere. I truly believe that unless you bring on the behind-the-scenes creatives, your front-of-house content will not have the same depth and stamina boasted by the long term heavy hitters like HBO. Not to mention half of what Netflix distributes was created entirely independent of the studio, which is cool and great but doesn’t prove that the newcomers have the secret sauce recipe. It just indicates they can recognize another’s well conceived ideas and then distribute them, which is a very smart way to build your catalogue and brand loyalty while waiting for the truly original content to resonate. Apple doesn’t have a catalogue and the current trend of pulling libraries is likely to continue.

Apple did right to bring over some great industry heavy hitters but imagining yourself as a direct competitor of HBO is a bit like me taking my first novel to Random House.

CEO-ing

Marathon records shattered

Eliud Kipchoge broke the two-hour marathon barrier. But it took a team of 42 other runners and one electric car to keep the 34-year-old Kenyan on pace to finish in 1 hour 59 minutes and 40 seconds.

It took 43 of the world’s fastest runners to break the 2-hour marathon barrier

Most people will only remember Kipchoge, but there was a dream team of world class runners surrounding him yesterday. Perhaps the event should also be remembered for the massive collection of talent that put their egos to the side to help him do the seemingly impossible.

Amazing effort by all involved. Kipchoge is a phenomenal athlete, one of the best runners of all time. This was a great use of strategy and technology, as well as his sheer will to achieve the impossible, to push him past the limit.

Turkey attacks Syrian Kurds

Syrian Kurds feel abandoned by the US. “You are leaving us to be slaughtered,” Kurdish general Mazloum Kobani reportedly told American officials. He warned that his army will be forced to turn to Russia for help in the absence of US protection.

“You have sold us”: Kurdish leader in Syria accuses US of abandoning allies

While Americans are distracted by an impeachment inquiry, Turkey is shelling Kurdish towns in northern Syria. Torn in a war between two allies, Trump has chosen not to stand up for the underdog Kurds who have helped the US in the fight against ISIS for the last five years. Critics of his inaction say

While Americans are distracted by an impeachment inquiry, Turkey is shelling Kurdish towns in northern Syria. Torn in a war between two allies, Trump has chosen not to stand up for the underdog Kurds who have helped the US in the fight against ISIS for the last five years. Critics of his inaction say the president is complicit in ethnic cleansing.

General Kobani is correct, and the President and his administration should be ashamed. Is this how we treat our allies in the most volatile area of the world?

Brexit fatigue

Brexit negotiators make a last-ditch effort to cut a deal. Discussions are in overdrive ahead of Thursday and Friday's European Council summit. But the continent is tired of reading about it, and the media has moved on in Paris, Rome, and Madrid.

Brexit negotiations are heating up for real, but the continent is tired of reading about it

As I was going through the news this morning for my weekend shift, it was obvious that Brexit was a still a big story in London, but not so much in Rome or Paris. That’s even though the negotiations are maybe, possibly, potentially, finally getting somewhere. Everyone has Brexit fatigue at this point

As I was going through the news this morning for my weekend shift, it was obvious that Brexit was a still a big story in London, but not so much in Rome or Paris. That’s even though the negotiations are maybe, possibly, potentially, finally getting somewhere. Everyone has Brexit fatigue at this point, but that’s doesn’t mean it’s not important.

Plastic pollution

Free Willy

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Here’s Amazon’s explanation for the Alexa eavesdropping scandal

Here’s Amazon’s explanation for the Alexa eavesdropping scandal

Read more on recode

From Our Members

  • We must understand and recognize that AI software is fundamentally different from the types of software we have been using up to now. Up to now we have used software to manage our financial systems, search documents, predict the weather, simulate an airplane, store and retrieve our data and on and on

    We must understand and recognize that AI software is fundamentally different from the types of software we have been using up to now. Up to now we have used software to manage our financial systems, search documents, predict the weather, simulate an airplane, store and retrieve our data and on and on and on. I spent my career managing the development of large software systems in science, engineering and finance. In each case we had documents that explained precisely what the software needed to do, and test cases that would allow us to confirm that the software was working properly. We also had software that recorded test results, software changes and kept logs of software performance. These disciplines don't work for AI.

    There is no precise explanation of what AI software is intended to do. Scanning thousands of pictures of dogs and asking the software to search for dogs in photos is a vague and inexact requirement. There is no test procedure that can tell us how well it works. (Compare that with using software to identify dogs from DNA samples.) AI software runs on a computer, and we are used to trusting computers, but AI software is fundamentally different and will never be as trustworthy. Ask yourself how you would test dog photo recognition AI software to evaluate its accuracy. It is simply not possible for Amazon to test all the ways Alexa could screw up. That is the nature of AI software and we are taking serious risks every time we use AI to make important decisions. It's a whole new world.