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Chloe Cushman

Good evening.

Brexit's super Saturday

New uses for social media

Indians are learning English through TikTok. China's viral video-sharing app just launched an educational initiative in India.

Indians are learning English through TikTok

It seems like ByteDance is trying to use the massive popularity of TikTok for something other than just being really fun.

Indians are using a Chinese app to teach one another English. Although it's an innovative use of social media, I'm a bit skeptical about TikTok's ability to revamp its image. The app's parent company, ByteDance, is based in Beijing. The specter of Chinese influence looms large.

This looks to me like an exercise to clean up its act in India. TikTok has had a rough run in this part of the world with linkages to fatal accidents and pornography. It's also faced legal suits and government warnings. So trying to promote and build an image of being more useful in helping common people

This looks to me like an exercise to clean up its act in India. TikTok has had a rough run in this part of the world with linkages to fatal accidents and pornography. It's also faced legal suits and government warnings. So trying to promote and build an image of being more useful in helping common people works in its favour. For the next court case, TikTok will at least have something positive to show for why it should be allowed to stay in the country.

The future of cars

The world’s downtowns are giving up on personal cars. In recent years, cities have begun to banish cars from specific streets or entire districts.

The world’s downtowns are slowly giving up on personal cars

I live in Los Angeles and were considering things like this as well except our public transit is terrible compared to other places. As long as the infrastructure can support having no cars, great!

Banning cars from the downtown is good for our lungs, our waist lines and our ears. Less air and noise pollution could attract people back to the downtown and result in much needed rejuvenation of beautiful older architecture. Walking in green spaces would allow exercise that is accessible to all and

Banning cars from the downtown is good for our lungs, our waist lines and our ears. Less air and noise pollution could attract people back to the downtown and result in much needed rejuvenation of beautiful older architecture. Walking in green spaces would allow exercise that is accessible to all and may even reconstitute a sense of community as people interact more. The key is access for service and delivery vehicles and easy alternative transport for longer distance travel like trains tramways buses and shared taxis.

India's wealth gap

Chinese censorship goes global

Chinese censorship is no longer just a China problem. The broad strokes of censorship in China are common knowledge. But over the past week or two, the world began to wake up to the fact that China’s censorship machine is now a global phenomenon. ✦

Chinese censorship is no longer just a China problem

It’s fascinating to see: the statement that something doesn’t fall in the scope of free speech because “it hurts the feelings” of people is an appeal to ethical concepts coming from a country that a while back proclaimed there are no such things as natural rights...

In the overt, China complains about

It’s fascinating to see: the statement that something doesn’t fall in the scope of free speech because “it hurts the feelings” of people is an appeal to ethical concepts coming from a country that a while back proclaimed there are no such things as natural rights...

In the overt, China complains about free speech hurting feelings, in the covert it manipulates social media in the west with disinformation.

Western companies need to decide how much to give up in ethics and basic rights in order to gain access to a market.

Outsiders' self-censorship follows a familiar pattern. When a Westerner runs afoul of Chinese nationalist ideology, they tend to follow the crude strategy of "apologize, play dumb, shut up."

The world needs to stop self-censoring about Hong Kong

Personally I disagree with cultural relativism. Not everything begs our understanding, like restricting freedom of thought, opinion, dress or the right to vote or assemble peacefully. There is a such thing as universally wrong. How does one judge the difference? I don’t have all the answers but usually

Personally I disagree with cultural relativism. Not everything begs our understanding, like restricting freedom of thought, opinion, dress or the right to vote or assemble peacefully. There is a such thing as universally wrong. How does one judge the difference? I don’t have all the answers but usually the right thing doesn’t produce more harm than good.

One small step

Two women walked in space. NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir stepped outside the International Space Station for a historic spacewalk that doubles as a metaphor for what it's like to be a woman full of ambition in 2019.

The metaphorical power of NASA’s first all-women spacewalk

Today was the first-ever all-women spacewalk, this moment is historic and will inspire so many girls to come. But getting here to this moment is a reminder of women trying to succeed in a world made for men

A moment to celebrate for all women. Lets make the spacesuit fit for many more women to come. Lets break down the bias so that this story - while spectacular, can become the norm and our children will see no boundaries nor be marginalized in the future simply for being female.

The future of gaming

Call of Duty turns down the loot. Players of the latest edition of the military-themed first-person shooter will no longer be able to pay for a chance of getting better at the game. Ridding loot boxes is a big step for the company, which generated $4.2 billion in revenue last year.

Call of Duty won’t be the last high-profile game to get rid of loot boxes

As an avid gamer I am extremely happy about this! This returns the game to a more skill-based system rather than a “pay to win” model. If you want pay to win, play mobile games or Fortnight and try not to get eliminated by some 8 year old who stole his moms credit card to buy better weapons.

This is great, loot boxes are kind of like gambling with the RNG (random number generator) element. Yes it makes money but nowhere near Season Battle Passes that Fortnite uses (Epic made ~$3B in profit in 2018 from it just one company not the while industry).

So good riddance to loot boxes, Battle Passes

This is great, loot boxes are kind of like gambling with the RNG (random number generator) element. Yes it makes money but nowhere near Season Battle Passes that Fortnite uses (Epic made ~$3B in profit in 2018 from it just one company not the while industry).

So good riddance to loot boxes, Battle Passes are more aligned with player engagement b/c you buy the pass and in order to maximize all its benefits you have to play more, play with friends, complete challenges, etc. to unlock things. Brilliant from a user engagement standpoint vs dumb chance loot boxes.

Top dollar TV

Can you hear me now?

Brave towns are putting a stop to the tyranny of leaf blowers. The loudest models may have noise levels of up to 112 decibels—louder than a plane taking off, a freight train, or a live rock concert.

More and more brave towns are putting a stop to the tyranny of leaf blowers

Sorry but the back up beep beep is required by law to save lives. Doesn't stop people from walking behind them and that creates more noise.

Life outside the city has highway noise lawm mowers and snow blowers not to mention trains and jet engines. Even cottage country has outboards and snowmobiles

Sorry but the back up beep beep is required by law to save lives. Doesn't stop people from walking behind them and that creates more noise.

Life outside the city has highway noise lawm mowers and snow blowers not to mention trains and jet engines. Even cottage country has outboards and snowmobiles. Annoy your neighbors crank the volume.

Let’s not stop there. Those pesky beep BEEP BEEPS from the semi-trailer trucks and snow plows on my street have got. to. go. I’ve fantasized about painting a “where (your) kids come to cry” sign at the entrance of the alley way our bedroom sits over. I swear it’s a symphony of bad hip hop or EDM blasting

Let’s not stop there. Those pesky beep BEEP BEEPS from the semi-trailer trucks and snow plows on my street have got. to. go. I’ve fantasized about painting a “where (your) kids come to cry” sign at the entrance of the alley way our bedroom sits over. I swear it’s a symphony of bad hip hop or EDM blasting from sun roofs and open windowed sedans (you know who you are), trucks endlessly backing up (to seemingly nowhere), children mid-meltdown, sloshing drunks, recycling foragers clanking $.05 bottles, children on the verge of a meltdown, couples on the verge of a meltdown and finally, yes, leaf blowers and lawn care equipment.

I want peace but I’m wrapped in red tape. An ode to city life.

Noise pollution is one of the next major challenges to overcome, and the solutions cannot only come from technology advances. Machines, even the quietest, generate their own low-level noise that contributes to both overall pollution and the insistent, steady thrum.

Talkin' Texas

The Lone Star State, but make it fashion. The world’s biggest luxury brand, Louis Vuitton, is investing $50 million into a bag production factory on a Texas ranch south of Fort Worth. They have good reasons why.

Why Louis Vuitton opened a factory on a ranch in Texas

I never thought I'd see the day where Bernard Arnault would be in a photo with Trump. But this is a great set of news for the US manufacturing sector, and hopefully this can create a bigger trend towards fashion brands setting up more US plants.

That said, "Made in the USA" is a tag that brands can

I never thought I'd see the day where Bernard Arnault would be in a photo with Trump. But this is a great set of news for the US manufacturing sector, and hopefully this can create a bigger trend towards fashion brands setting up more US plants.

That said, "Made in the USA" is a tag that brands can only use if 100% of their products are sourced there. The leather isn't entirely from Texas (which is a bit odd) but this issue has also hindered the watch world.

There so much more under this hood, but kudos to LVMH for this news.

Come back soon!

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The age of heroes is over

Read more on Quartz

From Our Members

  • I agree wholeheartedly with the overall analysis here. Too often, literary, scientific, artistic, etc. celebrities are born and upheld based on their work, while most other aspects of their lives are ignored. I think only politicians are measured in full.

    Interesting that in a time of crisis for the

    I agree wholeheartedly with the overall analysis here. Too often, literary, scientific, artistic, etc. celebrities are born and upheld based on their work, while most other aspects of their lives are ignored. I think only politicians are measured in full.

    Interesting that in a time of crisis for the world’s real “heroes”, fictional heroes have never had it better. Not since the golden age of comics have superhero’s enjoyed more widespread popularity. Perhaps it’s because they cannot let us down.

  • Why do we assume or believe that our heroes don’t have flaws? Heroes, in my opinion, are not those who are perfect, without flaws. But instead are heroic because of their flaws, mistakes. Fraser, whose biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder is as much a treatise on the flaws of American exceptionalism and

    Why do we assume or believe that our heroes don’t have flaws? Heroes, in my opinion, are not those who are perfect, without flaws. But instead are heroic because of their flaws, mistakes. Fraser, whose biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder is as much a treatise on the flaws of American exceptionalism and the mythology of the pioneers, makes an excellent point about making certain children read the full canon. Then as parents and teachers it’s our responsibility to set those works in context. Humans are myth makers but we also can see the flaws of our myths, heroes and gods.

  • My heroes are those who have the courage to speak out. Those who, through their own actions and testimony, bring to light what was once ignored in the darkness.

  • There is a fine distinction between celebrities whom we “Idolize”, and iconic figures that we worship as our “Hero’s”. The first group, we aspire to become them, we forgive their misgivings, shortcomings, and human quality faults, merely because we can relate. The second group however, are unattainable

    There is a fine distinction between celebrities whom we “Idolize”, and iconic figures that we worship as our “Hero’s”. The first group, we aspire to become them, we forgive their misgivings, shortcomings, and human quality faults, merely because we can relate. The second group however, are unattainable figures, those individuals whom we immensely admire, but do not necessarily wish to be them, nor envy them. All the while, we can see them do no wrong, they occupy a Demi-God like status in our psyche, and when they do fall from grace, the repercussions on us, is an assault on our core beliefs. Shaking the very foundations we built, thwarting rational, and prompting questions like “is everything really what it is seems, or is it what we want it to be?”.

    While I, myself, identify with people like “Oprah” as an all around ‘Hero’. I truly believe that everyday you attempt to rise to the occasion of simply doing what is right and decent, then you are a ‘Hero”. Regardless of what right might mean to various people, simply overcoming daily hardships and obstacles to make your families life and your community a better place, even if it is taken for granted, and considered by many a given part of your job and duty. But in the end, though they may not say it, you are a Hero in the eyes of those you’ve touched one way or another.

  • This is an excellent article. What I hear in it is not only that we look at the past critically but we also must continue to address it, grow and move forward. Things like statues of confederate leaders are valuable as markers of our past and also as milestones of our continued growth. Moving them from

    This is an excellent article. What I hear in it is not only that we look at the past critically but we also must continue to address it, grow and move forward. Things like statues of confederate leaders are valuable as markers of our past and also as milestones of our continued growth. Moving them from a place of reverence and idolatry to a place of history and study can and should spark continued dialogue. Consider the other aspects of these pieces such as the artist and artisans who created them as well at a point from which we’ve grown. Our past is just that past those who hold on to the past are stuck there and those who ignore it find themselves repeating it. We are all flawed people and if there is anything to celebrate in that it is to realize what amazing things this flawed creature has been and continues to be able to achieve.

  • I get that we’re tearing down our heroes these days a bit more thoroughly than in the past, but all that means is that we’re putting up new standards for them. It doesn’t mean we don’t have them, or the age of heroes is over, whatever that is. Hero-worship is deeply ingrained in our psyches, and goes

    I get that we’re tearing down our heroes these days a bit more thoroughly than in the past, but all that means is that we’re putting up new standards for them. It doesn’t mean we don’t have them, or the age of heroes is over, whatever that is. Hero-worship is deeply ingrained in our psyches, and goes back to at least the age of Homer and the Greeks.

    Maybe, we’ll start looking for real heroes, rather than ordinary people we exalt just because we need heroes. Actors, athletes, and the like are not heroes. The dudes risking their lives for those kids in Thailand, those are heroes. And we will never get tired of stories like that.