Matt Leidholm

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David Sedaris writes about buying—and then obsessing over—a step-counting Fitbit:

I leaned closer, and as she tapped the thickest part of it a number of glowing dots rose to the surface and danced back and forth. “It’s like a pedometer,” she continued. “But updated, and better. The goal is to take ten thousand steps per day, and, once you do, it vibrates.”

I forked some salami into my mouth. “Hard?”

David Sedaris: Living the Fitbit Life

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1 week down. It’s starting to look like more than just a hole in the ground.

1 week down. It’s starting to look like more than just a hole in the ground.

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Timothy Geithner: The Vox interview

Ezra Klein sits down for a 46-minute wide-ranging interview with Timothy Geithner, Treasury Secretary during the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis and the great stagnation that followed. It’s an interesting and revealing glimpse into the man and the decisions that followed an unprecedented crisis and the possibility for total collapse.

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Technology’s Man Problem

Claire Cain Miller writes in The New York Times about how the tech industry can be a disgusting boy’s club of infantile male culture:

Elissa Shevinsky can pinpoint the moment when she felt that she no longer belonged.

She was at a friend’s house last Sept. 8, watching the live stream of the TechCrunch Disrupt hackathon on her laptop and iPhone. Entrepreneurs were showing off their products, and two young Australian men, David Boulton and Jethro Batts, stood behind the podium to give their presentation. “Titstare is an app where you take photos of yourself staring at tits,” Mr. Boulton began, as photographs of women’s chests on a cellphone flashed on the screen behind him.

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iPad charger teardown: inside Apple's charger and a risky phony

In a fabulously technical post, Ken Shirriff shows why I always tell people not to cheap out on no-name replacements for “boring” components like chargers and cables:

Apple sells their iPad charger for $19, while you can buy an iPad charger on eBay for about $3. From the outside, the chargers look the same. Is there a difference besides the price? In this article, I look inside real and counterfeit chargers and find that the genuine charger has much better construction, power quality, and most importantly safety.

(Note: if you can’t stomach paying the Apple premium for chargers and cables, Monoprice sells cheaper versions of comparable quality.)

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Glenn Greenwald’s Encryption Guru

Todd S. Purdum profiles Bruce Schneier for Politico:

Schneier is a legendary encryption specialist who has written or edited 13 books on the subject, and worked for the Department of Defense, telecommunications companies, banks and governments. Most recently, he’s been a vocal advocate of the idea that the best security systems accept a reasonable amount of risk; a blind focus on protecting against every threat, he says, usually comes with unexpected costs.

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How politics makes us stupid

Wonkblog alum Ezra Klein writes about identity politics shapes our reason for his new online publication Vox:

There’s a simple theory underlying much of American politics. It sits hopefully at the base of almost every speech, every op-ed, every article, and every panel discussion. It courses through the Constitution and is a constant in President Obama’s most stirring addresses. It’s what we might call the More Information Hypothesis: the belief that many of our most bitter political battles are mere misunderstandings. The cause of these misunderstandings? Too little information — be it about climate change, or taxes, or Iraq, or the budget deficit. If only the citizenry were more informed, the thinking goes, then there wouldn’t be all this fighting. It’s a seductive model. […] But the More Information Hypothesis isn’t just wrong. It’s backwards. Cutting-edge research shows that the more information partisans get, the deeper their disagreements become.