Recent Technology Commentaries

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How Do We Fix Facebook? – Part 2
Easier said than done. However, Frances Haugen, the former Facebook data scientist who came forward with thousands of internal documents to back up her claims that the engagement-based algorithms created by the tech giant are used to deepen “divides, destabilize democracies, and make young girls and women feel bad about their bodies,” has been in talks with the House Judiciary...
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October 22, 2021
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The Insiders
Jeffrey Wigand and Frances Haugen have two things in common. Both blew the whistle on impropriety within their respective companies, and both appeared on the news show, 60 Minutes to tell their stories. At the social media company, Facebook, Haugen—with a degree in computer engineering, and a master’s degree in business from Harvard—has 15 years experience in the computer world...
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October 8, 2021
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Resilience
Amid the political and coronavirus turmoil, it’s time we turn to a story that demonstrates the best we can be. After a launch delay due to Tropical Storm Eta, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon capsule successfully launched last night carrying four astronauts to the International Space Station. “SpaceX,” Space.com reports, “uses automated drone ships as floating landing pads...
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November 16, 2020
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“Has Anyone Seen a Hasselblad Floating by?”
Tomorrow marks the 50th anniversary that two men landed on the surface of the moon. It’s impossible to overemphasize the extraordinary achievement that took place 50 years ago this week. Technical skills aside, the courage that three men took was beyond anything that had ever been attempted. And yet, the men, inside their Columbia space craft, found the time to...
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July 19, 2019
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July 16, 1969, 6:32 a.m.
In my mind, only a handful of moments in the last 50 years are iconic. The launch of Apollo 11 and subsequent landing of the first men on an extraterrestrial surface certainly remains one of the few for several reasons: excellence in planning, mathematics, physics, physical training, creativity, engineering and the courage it took for the three explorer-astronauts. On an...
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July 16, 2019
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This is What Genius Looks Like
Global warming, according to a majority of climate scientists, is a global threat. And an 81-year-old man thinks knows he’s found an answer. This is the face of genius. In a story from the CBS program 60 Minutes, Lesley Stahl interviewed a man with no science background or degrees. Walking around Thoreau’s idyllic Walden Pond, not far from his home,...
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June 28, 2019
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We Got Him!
Julian Assange – founder and director of WikiLeaks, claiming he was only acting as a journalist revealing the truth about government secrets – was taken into custody by the Metropolitan Police Service in London after seven years of self-imposed confinement in the Ecuadorian Embassy. In 2010, Assange and WikiLeaks published classified American military and diplomatic documents delivered to him by...
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April 12, 2019
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The Dark Side
In the age of Trump everything is a cultural/political battlefield where the truth is suspect and the weapons are in most everyone’s hands. The Internet is the infrastructure and social media has become a pipeline of hate speech, conspiracies and political tribalism; a cultural free-for-all where people say whatever they want, attach a link to fear or hate, and pass...
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November 30, 2018
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Touch Down!
“Wish you were here!” – tweet from InSight Mars lander, 12:03 PM – 26 Nov 2018 “@NASAInSight sent home its first photo after #MarsLanding: InSight’s view is a flat, smooth expanse called Elysium Planitia, but its workspace is below the surface, where it will study Mars’ deep interior,” the rest of the tweet reads. “The pursuit of excellence,”   » Read more...
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November 27, 2018
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Bad Blood
It sounded like a good idea. (Strike that.) It sounded like a great idea: one simple blood test that required a single finger prick would give “everyday Americans unlimited control over their health,” The New York Times writes (Mar. 15). The key promise Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes made to investors and potential clients: “that drawing a tiny amount of blood...
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March 16, 2018

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