LeVar Burton’s Quest to Succeed Alex Trebek – The New York Times:

Bear in mind that this might be paywalled when you try for it, but I love LeVar Burton too much to skip over it as I’d normally do with sites that are likely to block content.

If the right person catches the right project at the right time, the culture will always hold that person close. Do it three times, as LeVar Burton has done, and our relationship becomes something even deeper. Through his performances as Kunta Kinte in the landmark 1977 television mini-series “Roots,” as Lt. Cmdr. Geordi La Forge on “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” which aired in syndication from 1987 to 1994 and is the greatest of all “Star Trek” iterations (I’ll brook no arguments to the contrary) and as host of the beautifully ambling PBS children’s educational series “Reading Rainbow” during its run from 1983 to 2006, Burton established himself as an icon of grace and humanism, an enduring part of the fabric of American culture. Which might explain why, this past spring, there was an organic social media groundswell to get Burton, who is 64, the shot he wanted at replacing another beloved figure, the late Alex Trebek, as host of “Jeopardy!”

The Chemical Weapon Next Door – Drilled News:

Summer’s teachers closed the doors, secured the windows, and pulled the drapes shut. It was only when she went home that day and spoke to her dad, an environmental safety expert, that she realized she, her classmates, and thousands of other Torrance residents, had had a near miss with a chemical so deadly the Department of Homeland Security lists it as a substance of interest for terrorists.

“I told [my dad] all we did was shut the windows and he explained it wouldn’t have been enough to protect the students,” she recalls.

Spencer’s dad explained if the chemical had been released, “thousands of Torrance residents would have died”.

Anthony Hopkins’ 20 best film performances – ranked! | Anthony Hopkins | The Guardian:

Kyoto Cherry Blossom Full Flower dates | Datagraver:

tl;dr – Earlier and earlier, with fewer outliers. This is a very obvious change and you can really see the timeline.

  1. A reminder that some societies have had really good records for a really long time.
  2. I’d joke this was chilling data, but this is too serious.

Since the year 812 people in Japan have recorded the first day in the year the Cherry Blossom was in full bloom in Kyoto. Based on this record you can see some of the local climate effects.

The 32 Greatest Character Actors Working Today:

The best character actors take ordinariness and make it highly specific. Think of the way Beth Grant has honed the suburban busybody to its sharpest points, or how, with just one sigh, Michael Stuhlbarg serves up the foibles of the intelligentsia on a silver platter.

Character actors often have a sense of timelessness to them as well. While an A-lister’s stock may rise and fall with the fashions of the day, a character actor can stay booked and busy for decades.

See the Highest-Resolution Atomic Image Ever Captured – Scientific American:

Behold the highest-resolution image of atoms ever seen. Cornell University researchers captured a sample from a crystal in three dimensions and magnified it 100 million times, doubling the resolution that earned the same scientists a Guinness World Record in 2018. Their work could help develop materials for designing more powerful and efficient phones, computers and other electronics, as well as longer-lasting batteries.
The researchers obtained the image using a technique called electron ptychography. It involves shooting a beam of electrons, about a billion of them per second, at a target material. The beam moves infinitesimally as the electrons are fired, so they hit the sample from slightly different angles each time—sometimes they pass through cleanly, and other times they hit atoms and bounce around inside the sample on their way out.

dspinellis/unix-history-repo: Continuous Unix commit history from 1970 until today:

The history and evolution of the Unix operating system is made available as a revision management repository, covering the period from its inception in 1970 as a 2.5 thousand line kernel and 26 commands, to 2018 as a widely-used 30 million line system. The 1.5GB repository contains about half a million commits and more than two thousand merges. The repository employs Git system for its storage and is hosted on GitHub. It has been created by synthesizing with custom software 24 snapshots of systems developed at Bell Labs, the University of California at Berkeley, and the 386BSD team, two legacy repositories, and the modern repository of the open source FreeBSD system. In total, about one thousand individual contributors are identified, the early ones through primary research. The data set can be used for empirical research in software engineering, information systems, and software archaeology.


Guided by the Unseen – Fantasy Flight Games:

Setting this aside for future reference and in case any other AH:LCG players are out there.

With The Innsmouth Conspiracy coming to a close and a new and exciting story on the horizon, it is time once again to revisit the official FAQ and Taboo Cards with some revisions and alterations. Today, we’d like to explain each of the changes and reveal some of the logic behind which cards we’ve chosen to alter and why.

We’d also like to explain the FAQ schedule so that players know what to expect. In general, starting now, we plan on updating the FAQ about twice a year, before and after each campaign release. This gives players a nice launching point for a new campaign as they build investigator decks, and gives cards their chance to shine for a short while before we even consider an errata or taboo. That said, we can still make emergency FAQ updates if something is particularly problematic. So, with this being the period between The Innsmouth Conspiracy and The Edge of the Earth, let’s take a look at the changes.

Emacs: smarter search and replace:

While I rarely need to apply additional logic when replacing matches, it’s nice to know we have options available in our Emacs toolbox. This prompted me to check out replace-regexp’s documentation (via M-x describe-function or my favorite M-x helpful-callable). There’s lots in there. Go check its docs out. You may be pleasantly surprised by all the featured packed under this humble function.

Google’s messaging mess: a timeline – The Verge:

If anything is clear in 2021, it’s that Google’s messaging future will likely remain muddled for quite some time.

via – Daring Fireball