I have some Markdown files that I’m editing and I wanted to generate a folder of HTML files. I looked around on my machine and was surprised I didn’t have anything at hand for that already.
So I wrote a script. I’m a Ruby novice, and it’s quite likely that my Ruby is weird in a dozen different ways. But the script still might be useful to you. (The script requires the RDiscount gem.)
[one of my faves is to turn those if/then statements into guard clauses:
so this: if extension == '.markdown' then return true end
return true if extension == '.markdown'
Just a personal fave, nothing more. I find them easy to read.]
Kevin Roose, writing at NY Magazine’s Daily Intelligencer:
So far, people seem to think that Amazon’s incipient drone-delivery program, which was announced to great fanfare on 60 Minutes last night, is either a short-term publicity stunt designed to draw attention to Amazon on Cyber Monday, or a long-term publicity stunt meant to convince us of “Amazon’s indomitable spirit of innovation,” while not actually requiring Amazon to do anything yet. (Since, by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s own admission, there’s no way the FAA will allow unmanned aircraft to deliver Amazon packages before 2015.)
Instead, I think Bezos is up to something much more practical. By unveiling a huge drone program in progress, he’s sending a message to the FAA regulators and Senate committees who are currently considering how unmanned aircraft can be used commercially. And that message is: Don’t even think about getting in our way.
I think it’s all those things. Of course it’s a stunt. Of course it remains vaporware. But I really do think Bezos wants to build and deploy these things.
[Considering how every year there's a raft of stories about how much working in an Amazon warehouse sucks and how by promising so many jobs they get huge tax breaks that are ultimately anti-competitive etc. that drones of any sort fit in the scheme. There's also been stories about the Kiva robots that would replace all the folks complaining about how much it sucks. And Amazon continues to improve the density of the packing in their warehouses by organizing items in the warehouse for "packability", which means items unrelated by "what" they are are in bins together because you can fit more items in the space that way. All of which points to a computerized robotic future that, of course (!?!), includes drone delivery. I'd be hugely surprised if they're not working on systems for 3D printing of various items as well. It only makes sense form that sort of forward looking approach.
I do not claim to know what "jobs" the workforce being displaced will be able to fill, but maybe we need to fundamentally reconsider the role of the individual contributor anyway. If the work is as difficult as it seems (boring and physically demanding), maybe we're better off not having people do it. But I've got nothing beyond that...]
Source: Daring Fireball
OTOH, another approach:
I don’t own any guns, but the Amazon Air drones tempt me to buy a rifle. It would be so much fun to sit on my front porch and shoot at the drones as they buzz by.
It’s cold today in Ballard but the sky is marvelously blue. Today I’d put on a ski cap and grab a bottle of good whisky and do my part to keep the sky clean.
I might argue it’s a matter of collateral damage. I don’t know how I could tell Amazon’s harmless, happy-day drones from Google’s real-time people-watchers — or those of the police or the NSA. It’s best to shoot them all down.
Or I might argue that it’s just plain fun. So much fun.
[I'd also add that I'd probably come to hate the drones pretty quickly considering my current thoughts on leaf blowers. I'd adjust my weapon of choice to a shotgun though, it would increase the odds in my favor considerably. And no, I don't think Brent is serious, or would mix alcohol with firearms. but you'll have to ask him. Jim commented: "Seriously, how are they going to stop people from shooting them down. It’s got to be a problem, right?" What stops people from shooting at things now? (an arguable position depending on where you live and what you see being shot).]
“FDA is concerned about the public health consequences of inaccurate results from the PGS device,” the agency said today. “The main purpose of compliance with FDA’s regulatory requirements is to ensure that the tests work.”
The FDA used candid language in the letter to outline the work the agency has done with 23andMe since 2009 to no avail, including more than 14 face-to-face and teleconference meetings and had hundreds of e-mail exchanges. The FDA said it has given the company feedback on study protocols, discussed regulatory pathways and provided statistical advice.
[Here's the thing... genetic testing can’t tell you whether or not you will develop a disease, only whether you carry a gene mutation that *statistically* puts you at a higher risk. Meaning they've found a correlation, but as far as I can tell, no one knows whether an individual gene by itself affects anything. It seems quite the opposite from what I've read... changing one gene seems to cause other genes to change as well and explain why in part all this is such slippery stuff... why there are no "cures" being batted about. (Yes, I know people are working on all kinds of stuff, but it all runs counter my experience that this form of "reductionism" applies well in complex systems.) Negative tests for a given gene mutation also don’t mean that you’re in the clear: For example it seems that only ~5% of breast cancers and maybe as much as 15% of ovarian cancers are caused by hereditary mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 the genes made somewhat famous by Ms. Jolie. As always, I'm not telling anyone what to do, and certainly if you're not relying it diagnostically have at it. But between the margin of errors in the tests themselves, the limited number of markers that a service like the above checks, etc... seems like a really low grade indicator of anything. I know it appears high tech and shiny, but that doesn't mean it's accurate or reliable, or that we have any idea what it means when we see it.]
Here’s a screen shot of the criteria you can use to filter out policies. I played with it quite a bit and learned a lot about insurance that I didn’t know before. I didn’t make a decision right now, I want to read some more, and think. But I was overall quite pleased with the process. Now maybe there are still more glitches to come, so I’ll have to let you know.
But one thing’s for sure — it’s been a long time since the insurance industry thought I was a useful customer. They control the health care market in this country, and health care is important. The experience here, though it had its glitches, made me feel welcome. If this is what it took to straighten things out, then I’m all for it.
[Progress. I wonder how much better this all could have been if the Feds had built an API instead of site and let the rest of the universe build sites....]
Source: Scripting News
That Otellini found the inner calm to publicly admit his mistake — in an article that would be published on his last day as CEO, no less — is a testament to his character. More important, Otellini’s admission unburdened his successor, Brian Krzanich, freeing him to steer the company in a new direction.
And Krzanich is doing just that.
[In business that's one earmark of leadership.]
Source: Monday Note
The more likely story is that J.D. Power tweaked the survey’s scope to get the result they wanted to publish. By restricting the survey to certain models, price ranges, and survey respondents, and then denying that their published comparison chart has any mathematical relation to the scores, they can justify almost any manufacturer “winning”.
Why might they want to say that Samsung’s tablets are better than Apple’s?
Samsung spends a ton of money on marketing — far more than Apple — and frequently employs unethical marketing techniques. Apple isn’t known to play ball very well with the enterprise analyst or market-research rackets, which often implicitly require companies to pay for their high-end services in order for them to recommend the companies’ products. And publishing a conclusion like this gets J.D. Power a lot of attention in a market that the internet is constantly making less relevant.
With even their apparently arbitrary chart denying their conclusion and the numbers not making much sense, it’s at best a desperate stretch. They’re not even good at this game.
[And more yuck, from the "who can you trust?" dept.]