How did the plain green lawn become the central landscaping feature in America, and what are the financial, the medical, and perhaps most painfully, the ecological costs? "American Green"
(Plus- the Father of Miniature Golf)
“The more serious about gardening I became, the more dubious lawns seemed”*…

Go to seed: bit.ly/2Y6R7qu

No one has done more to dispel the myth of U.S. social mobility than Raj Chetty. But he has a plan to make equality of opportunity a reality: "The Economist Who Would Fix the American Dream"
(Plus- Alexander the Great)
“Any human anywhere will blossom in a hundred unexpected talents and capacities simply by being given the opportunity to do so”*…

Ponder possibility: bit.ly/2YedPkK

If the "mirrorverse" exists, pending experiments could reveal it: "Scientists are searching for a mirror universe. It could be sitting right in front of you."
(Plus- The Great Fire of Rome)
“There are two things you should remember when dealing with parallel universes. One, they’re not really parallel, and two, they’re not really universes.”*…

Reflect on reflections: bit.ly/2O5R26O

Fake news 'vaccine' works: 'Pre-bunking' game reduces susceptibility to disinformation
(Plus- Hunter S Thompson and Papal Infallibility)
“…but no one was interested in the facts. They preferred the invention because this invention expressed and corroborated their hates and fears so perfectly”*…

Contemplate credibility: bit.ly/2JRRKPL

What the burgeoning movement says about science, solace, and how a theory becomes truth; "Looking for Life on a Flat Earth"
(Plus- the first photo of a star)
“Behind the hieroglyphic streets there would either be a transcendent meaning, or only the earth”*…

Contemplate curvature: bit.ly/2SkQxny

Georgia’s new election system raises old computer security concerns-- concerns that afflict 33% of U.S. counties
(Plus- voter suppression)
“Troubles hurt the most when they prove self-inflicted”*…

Wonder why at bit.ly/32mhkVg

John Cage's 4' 33", performed by death metal band Dead Territory
(Plus- The Who's first U.S. tour)

“Never miss a good chance to shut up”*…
bit.ly/2Y2Zs2m/2XKJ8nN

Even as climate change taketh away, it giveth: "Melting Greenland Is Awash in Sand."
(Plus- Happy Fools Paradise Day)
“Castles made of sand fall in the sea eventually”*…

Have second thoughts about silver linings: bit.ly/2XKJ8nN

An extraordinary collection of "Uninteresting Photographs"
(Plus- celluloid)
“Today everything exists to end in a photograph”*…

Search for meaning: bit.ly/2XJUQKk

Two experts agree that the international political and economic regime we've known is waning... but share different visions of a "post-global" future
(Plus- Zheng He)
“The international situation is desperate, as usual”*…

Renew your passport: bit.ly/2XEthSQ

Form and function, married: narrative non-fiction ace Mark Bowden (Blackhawk Down) and artist Chad Hurd (Archer) render the Mueller Report not only readable, but gripping.

bit.ly/2JFktaj

How did the sailors of early modern Europe learn to traverse the world’s seas? By going to school and doing math problems: "When pirates studied Euclid"
(Plus- [the other] John Locke)
“With the sextant he made obeisance to the sun-god”*…

Find your way: bit.ly/2JrXtfY

What exactly is the gold standard, and what would it mean if it were re-established? Timely questions: "The quiet campaign to reinstate the gold standard is getting louder
(Plus- the national debt, refinanced)
“O Gold! I still prefer thee unto paper”*…

Ponder the pecuniary: bit.ly/2JoiJmH

The mystery of Florida’s cannonball-eating Spanish fort, and what it might teach us
(Plus- Zeppelin)
“That which does not kill us makes us stronger”*…

Muse on mutable materials: bit.ly/2L8peMz

The rise and fall of Kobayashi, Godfather of Competitive Eating
(Plus- bread, sliced)
“But if you’re gonna dine with them cannibals / Sooner or later, darling, you’re gonna get eaten”*…

Go for the gold: bit.ly/32gjWnx

What can a 19th-century scammer teach us about the history of women, lying, and economic boom-and-bust cycles?: "The No. 1 Ladies’ Defrauding Agency"
(Plus- Bugs Moran)
“When I consider Life, ’tis all a cheat”*…

Ponder the prerequisites for Ponzi: bit.ly/2LH3UNG

Unintended consequences and the perils of prediction: "H.G. Wells and the uncertainties of progress"
(Plus- Newton's "Principia")
“Although there is no progress without change, not all change is progress”*…

Ponder posterity: bit.ly/2NuLulJ

The first printing of the Declaration of Independence contained a typo in the first sentence. Danielle Allen, of Harvard, explains why this seemingly tiny mistake matters: interpreting this sentence correctly, she argues, is crucial to understanding how the powers of government are organized—and, consequentially, how we can be an effective citizens.
bit.ly/2xu3NNh

The Supreme Court washed its hands of gerrymandering. Now what?
(Plus- the Declaration of Independence)
“That’s all we’re asking for: an end to the antidemocratic and un-American practice of gerrymandering congressional districts”*…

Remembering that fair representation was grounds for revolution (ours in 1776, among others): bit.ly/2xsSoNP

Lillian Ross and the complicated question of character and and the work that it produces: "Not Enough Delilahs"
(Plus- Tom Stoppard)
“The act of a pro is to make it look easy. Fred Astaire doesn’t grunt when he dances to let you know how hard it is. If you’re good at it, you leave no fingerprints.”*…

Consider the source at: bit.ly/2YAs1S4

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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.