In its original concept, the Appalachian Trail was more than a hiking path: "An Appalachian Trail: A Project in Regional Planning"
(Plus- the proto-National Park)
“There is a phenomenon called ‘Trail Magic'”*…

Walk the walk:

The stuff of dreams, the stuff of nightmares: "How Much Data is Generated Each Day?"
(Plus- the Father of the computer database)
“Big Data is like teenage sex: everyone talks about it, nobody really knows how to do it, everyone thinks everyone else is doing it, so everyone claims they are doing it”*…

Revel in really, really big numbers:

Mapping the spread of words along trade routes
(Plus- Canterbury Tales, told)
“We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary”*…

ponder the provenance of your produce:

A paean to that paragon of "Public Goods": "In Praise of Public Libraries"
(Plus- Aphra Behn)
“A public library is the most democratic thing in the world”*…

Check it out:

Put it all in (temporal) perspective at "Here Is Today"
(Plus- Leonardo)
“In the long run we are all dead”*…

Ponder the perception of permanence:

The concentrations of water toponyms in the United States: "Lake, River, Spring, Pond, Bay and Swamp"
(Plus- The Grapes of Wrath)
“What’s in a name?”*…

Call ’em as you saw ’em:

An appreciation of that greatest of all silent comedians: "Buster Keaton: Anarchitect"
(Plus- Stanley Donen)
“Dying is easy, comedy is hard”*…

Take the fall at:

A glimpse of things to come?
Authoritarian countries are openly working to control opinion/knowledge online. Now the EU risks backhandedly following:
"Official EU Agencies Falsely Report More Than 550 URLs as Terrorist Content"

A record of the most significant event in the history of life on Earth, the fossil evidence of the almost-instant extinction of most life on the planet: "The Day the Dinosaurs Died"
(Plus- Cope)
“Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.”*…

Extricate heads from the sand:

An assessment of MoMA's "The Value of Good Design" exhibit... and a meditation on the history and role of design more generally: "How 'Good Design' Failed Us"
(Plus- the Apple I)
“A picture is worth a thousand dollars”*…

Curtail commodification:

Humanity's most epic migration: "The history and mystery of Polynesian navigation"
(Plus- the British Empire, begun)
“We have always been taught that navigation is the result of civilization, but modern archeology has demonstrated very clearly that this is not so”*…

Find your way:

"Snapping a black hole's silhouette is like photographing an orange on the moon..."
The Event Horizon Telescope Is Trying to Take the First-Ever Photo of a Black Hole

The mystery of the missing comestibles: "When did America’s heart turn cold on buffet chains?"
(Plus- the father of Sweet'N Low)
“The other night I ate at a real nice family restaurant. Every table had an argument going.”*…

Walk the line at:

Our nostalgia for the 1990s obscures the story of how the decade created the crises of the present: “How the Nineties are coming back to haunt us”
(Plus- skyjacking)

“There was a clarity to the Nineties”*…

Learn from the past:

The contribution of culture and art to the U.S. economy is bigger than the economic output of Sweden or Switzerland: “The Economic Power of American Arts and Culture
(Plus- Petrarch)“
“Life without industry is guilt; industry without art is brutality”*…

See to your soul:

Lots of cautions– with an optimistic kicker– at: “What the 17th century’s “Little Ice Age” teaches us about climate change”
(Plus- Hobbes)
“One of the biggest obstacles to making a start on climate change is that it has become a cliche before it has even been understood”*…

Bundle up:

Rejected Vanity Plates: inside the important job of keeping poop puns, dick jokes, and hate speech off California’s roadways
(Plus- Michelin)

“Vanity, not love, has been my folly”*…

Keep it civil at:

Slavery is far from dead. And as @MaryKayMagistad discusses with Prof Genevieve LeBaron, it comes in many guises.
"Modern slavery in your grocery cart"

Liquid Pleasure’s assent to wedding band superstardom– its rewards and its costs– are an all-too-revealing tale of our times: “That Kind of Money”
(Plus- MLK’s last speech) “Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced”*…


Florida’s bizarre lost theme parks from before the Disney era
(Plus- Florida, found)
“To an artist a metaphor is as real as a dollar”*…

Pull over to investigate:

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Refactor Camp

Mastodon instance for attendees of Refactor Camp, and members of various online/offline groups that have grown out of it. Related local groups with varying levels of activity exist in the Bay Area, New York, Chicago, and Austin.

Kinda/sorta sponsored by the Ribbonfarm Blogamatic Universe.

If you already know a few people in this neck of the woods, try and pick a handle they'll recognize when you sign up. Please note that the registration confirmation email may end up in your spam folder, so check there. It should come from administrator Zach Faddis.