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The New York Times Is Committing ‘Journalistic Malpractice’ on Trump’s Catastrophic COVID-19 Failures

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Gregg Gonsalves, assistant professor in epidemiology of microbial diseases at Yale, on Twitter, responding to a Times story preposterously headlined “Trump Suggests Lack of Testing Is No Longer a Problem. Governors Disagree.”:

This is journalistic malpractice. If we don’t have scale-up of testing, we will be in lock-down for months & months. There is no debate on this, why frame it like there is one? Next: Trump says earth flat, scientists say otherwise.

Time national political correspondent Jonathan Martin responded (lowercase and punctuation sic):

you’re picking the wrong fight, move along

Gonsalves’s thread responding to Martin ought to be reported as a murder:

This is an emergency, act like it. It matters that you’re failing, and it’s not about a lowly reader trying to score points, but the fact that @NYTimes eliding, equivocating on the federal response has consequences for millions of people.

So, get better. Tell us, why 4 months into this we STILL have insufficient number of tests — what happened politically that led us to this point, keeps us still incapable of rising to the task. There are political stories abounding in this world-historical crisis and you surrender to the he-said-she-said variety of reporting, every time. […]

I buried dozens of my friends during the height of the AIDS epidemic and we’re all preparing for burials now of friends and family in this new pandemic. Don’t you dare tell me to move on.

Do your job. We are facing one of the greatest challenges in American history, largely due to political failures of the current Administration. Dig. Find out what is happening, the roots of the failures. Name names. You have the resources of one of biggest papers in the US.

Stop the transcription of press conferences, calls as the news in and of itself. Go deeper. Explain how current American politics led to this epidemiological and economic calamity, and how our leaders are or are not rising to the challenge. You may lose your access to certain prized sources inside the White House, the invitations to the best parties in DC, but you’ll gain the respect of your readers and rescue your reputations from the disdain of history.

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codesujal
5 days ago
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I’ve been talking to my wife about canceling our Times subscription. They’ve lost their way as a newspaper. This is terrible.
West Hartford, CT
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The Drawings Secretly Inserted into Official Swiss Topographical Maps

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Hidden drawing in a Swiss map

Hidden drawing in a Swiss map

For decades, mapmakers working for the Swiss Federal Office of Topography have defied their mandates to create the most accurate maps possible by covertly inserting drawings in official maps.

But on certain maps, in Switzerland’s more remote regions, there is also, curiously, a spider, a man’s face, a naked woman, a hiker, a fish, and a marmot. These barely-perceptible apparitions aren’t mistakes, but rather illustrations hidden by the official cartographers at Swisstopo in defiance of their mandate “to reconstitute reality.” Maps published by Swisstopo undergo a rigorous proofreading process, so to find an illicit drawing means that the cartographer has outsmarted his colleagues.

It also implies that the mapmaker has openly violated his commitment to accuracy, risking professional repercussions on account of an alpine rodent. No cartographer has been fired over these drawings, but then again, most were only discovered once their author had already left. (Many mapmakers timed the publication of their drawing to coincide with their retirement.)

Some of these blend remarkably well within the usual details of the maps — I never would have noticed the reclining nude in the second image above if it weren’t highlighted.

See also trap streets, errors deliberately introduced by mapmakers to catch others copying their work. (via @jschulenklopper)

Tags: maps   Switzerland
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codesujal
31 days ago
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in which cartographers have fun with maps...
West Hartford, CT
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Further Research is Needed

3 Comments and 6 Shares
Further research is needed to fully understand how we managed to do such a good job.
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codesujal
50 days ago
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So you’re saying you want the trump administration to start writing “scientific” papers...
West Hartford, CT
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2 public comments
Lythimus
52 days ago
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That's the researcher *mic drop*
alt_text_bot
52 days ago
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Further research is needed to fully understand how we managed to do such a good job.

Noted: New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output

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“IQ Test”

New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output

(Est. 2002) "Founded in 2002, Intelligence Squared is the world's premier debating forum. Live and online we take you to the heart of the issues and the arguments that matter, in the company of some of the world's sharpest minds and most exciting orators. Join the debate."

Design by
Studio Output (London, UK)

Related links
Studio Output project page

Relevant quote
To complement the intelligent content, Output evolved the existing word mark and brand identity to create a new, elegant design language. Inspired by high-end editorial design, a smart yet classic typeface and a bold but balanced colour system were introduced to inject gravitas and authority into the brand. To bring audiences closer to the action, a more considered photography style has also been added, featuring contributor’s expressions and highlighting subtle details that would normally only be noticed up-close.

Images (opinion after)

New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
Logo.
New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
Full to shorthand logo animation.
New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
IQ2 shorthand.
New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
Online presence.
New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
New Logo and Identity for Intelligence Squared by Studio Output
Visual language.

Opinion
The old logo did a good job in establishing the clever typographic play of hiding “IQ” in “intelligence” but an amply letterspaced italic serif wasn’t the best conduit for it. The new logo is a great execution evolution that makes the visual puzzle more engaging and pleasing while improving the readability of the logo through a bolder and more compact wordmark. The “2” could have been a little bigger but I like how its baseline anchors with the “e”. The IQ2 shorthand is great and I love how neatly it shortens. The rest of the identity is elegant and crisp, definitely exuding a serious but comfortable editorial tone. I feel more intelligent just by looking at it.

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codesujal
370 days ago
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This one’s pretty nice, on the other hand. Very clever.
West Hartford, CT
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Noted: New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners

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“Come for the Logo, Stay for the Video Introduction”

New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners

(Est. 1906) "The Coldwell Banker brand is the oldest and most established residential real estate franchise system in North America. In fact, in many ways it was the original real estate "start up." Founded by young entrepreneurs Colbert Coldwell in 1906 and later Benjamin Banker, Coldwell Banker changed the way people bought and sold homes across America, ultimately becoming one of the most trusted real estate brands in the world. More than 100 years later, the Coldwell Banker network is still continuously recognized for its innovation and leadership across 3,000 offices in 49 countries and territories."

Design by
Siltanen & Partners (El Segundo, CA)

Related links
Coldwell Banker blog post
RISMedia story

Relevant quote
The most striking addition to the logo is the star in the top right corner. The CB North Star symbolizes the brand’s position in real estate as a consistent, reliable presence guiding us all home. The new CB North Star mark is a visual representation of the brand’s commitment to excellence. It is clean and simple, yet elegant. It is modern, but still pays homage to the brand’s storied 113-year history. The North Star also symbolizes the Coldwell Banker® network. Even in a new real estate landscape, agents remain a constant, guiding consumers as they navigate the home buying and selling process.

A transparent rebrand is a bold approach. This undertaking is the brand’s commitment to ingenuity in action, in this case doing things differently for the right reasons. The brand will test the new logo in real-world scenarios providing an opportunity to collect feedback. Based on the results and data collected, the brand will modify and refine materials including marketing collateral, building signs and yard signs to create a final product that represents the brand and meets the needs of the network. In keeping with the transparent process, the brand will release updates periodically on its social channels. The brand believes that this phased approach will best serve its brokers and agents, because it allows them time to plan for the transition that will begin in January 2020, while also giving them a voice in the process.

Images (opinion after)

New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners
Logo.
New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners
New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners
Interior signage renderings. Only real view of the wordmark.
New Logo for Coldwell Banker by Siltanen & Partners
Cufflink.
Logo introduction. DO NOT be fooled by the bland corporate start of the video, things get turnt at the the :50 mark.

Opinion
The old logo was definitely dated, some of it in a good way, some of it in a bad way. There was a lot of really cool things happening in that typography that a few of them could have easily been rescued and reinterpreted with a contemporary spin with the right guidance and commissioned typographer. Even the old “CB” interlocking monogram had something that could have been salvaged. Instead, the new monogram is a random sans serif with poorly overlapping letters and a star because the redesign effort was nicknamed “Project North Star” and, oh god, someone please punch me in the brain. There is so much spin and pretentiousness in this that it’s hard to take it seriously — a sentiment exacerbated by the introduction video. I try to not swear when writing on Brand New but Holy. Fucking. Shit. That is the most delusional identity introduction video I have ever seen. For a moment I even doubted if this was done with knowing irony but both the cufflink application image and that Coldwell Banker’s agency’s motto on their home page is “It’s time to supercharge your brand”, convinced me that, no, this was done with a straight face thinking that this was going to be super cool. It’s not. Video aside, compared to the recent Century 21 redesign or even RE/MAX this is a very poor redesign that lacks the quality or seriousness these other two competitors achieved in their process. Social media is rarely the place to come to conclusions but the response on their Facebook and Twitter pages — from agents that have to use and rely on the logo for their business — is fully negative and I am 99% sure this logo will be retracted.

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codesujal
370 days ago
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Not loving this new logo...
West Hartford, CT
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iOS 12

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If you tuned in to this year’s WWDC Keynote, you’ll know all about the big features in iOS 12: Siri Shortcuts, ARKit 2, and Core ML 2 — not to mentioned the bombshell pre-announcement of the long-rumored iOS / Mac bridge, codenamed “Marzipan”.

And if you watched this year’s Platforms State of the Union session, you’ll be aware of the less glamorous, but equally exciting new technologies, like customizable user notification UI, and the new Network and Natural Language frameworks.

But here at NSHipster, we’re interested in the nitty-gritty: the small (dare we say, obscure?) changes that add up to make a big impact to our day-to-day. This year’s iOS 12 release notes and Foundation Release Notes cover many of these changes, however they don’t tell the whole story. For that, you have to dig deeper.

In celebration of this week’s release of iOS 12, we’re sharing what we found after trawling through the API diffs from iOS 11.4 to 12. (As it were, many of these are still undocumented, so proceed with caution).


Prioritizing Network Traffic for Important Requests

Have you heard of Fast Lane for iOS? No, not that fastlane. No, not that IOS, either.

Fast Lane (or is it Fastlane?) is a mechanism used to prioritize wireless traffic according to its type, such as audio, video, or background data. It’s a technology specific to Cisco routers, (which account for about half of all internet traffic), that encapsulates several Wi-Fi standards like 802.11r for fast roaming, 802.11k for assisted roaming, and 802.11v for wireless configuration.

Thanks to a partnership between Apple and Cisco announced in 2015, iOS developers can opt-in to this technology by providing a service type (QoS marking) to network connections (though many high-level APIs take care of this for you automatically).

New in iOS 12, URLRequest objects can now set networkServiceType to NSURLNetworkServiceTypeResponsiveData to prioritize time-sensitive requests:

import Foundation
          let url = URL(string: "https://example.com/checkout")!
          var request = URLRequest(url: url)
          request.httpMethod = "POST"
          request.networkServiceType = .responsiveData // Prioritize
          URLSession.shared.dataTask(with: request) {
          (data, response, error) in
          // ...
          }
          

This option is currently undocumented, but the guidance from the engineers presenting WWDC 2018 Session 714: “Optimizing Your App for Today’s Internet” is to use this feature judiciously, only when time is of the essence. The example they provide is “the checkout page for a shopping app”, but you can extrapolate other potential use cases.

Reading NFC Tags in the Background

One of the longstanding questions coming out of WWDC 2018 was the new ndefMessagePayload property added to NSUserActivity. At the time, the most that Apple engineers would offer during Lab sessions was “no comment”.

But all became clear with last week’s announcements of the iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max and iPhone XR. These devices support reading NFC tags in the background, and if you’re running iOS 12 on the latest generation of devices, you’ll be able to — among other things — launch apps, start calls, and open URLs in response to scanning compatible NFC tags. No additional setup required. To avoid inadvertent activation, this only works if the iPhone is unlocked and not currently in Airplane Mode or being used for Apple Pay or camera.

With this NFC integration, Apple hopes to fully realize past promises made about BLE iBeacons back in 2013, offering a sleeker interface to the real world than the depravity of scanning a QR code (a practice ubiquitous in China, but largely ignored to the rest of the world).

Perhaps the most commonly advertised use cases for both technologies NFC and iBeacon technologies have been visiting a museum and getting additional details about an exhibit by hovering your phone near a strategically-placed information placard.

Enabling this kind of functionality in your app requires entitlements, setting associated domains, and other configuration — not to mention the actual APIs you need to implement. Fortunately, Apple provides some extensive documentation for this process, including this sample code project and this article.

Matching Contacts on Phone Number and Email Address

The Contacts framework was introduced in iOS 9 and macOS El Capitan as a modern replacement for the AddressBook framework.

Until recently, you could only search for contacts by name and identifier. With iOS 12, you can now use the predicateForContacts(matching:), and predicateForContacts(matchingEmailAddress:) class methods on CNContact to construct predicates for matching on phone numbers and email addresses.

For example, if we wanted to retrieve the given and family name components for all contacts with a given phone number and email address, you create a CNContactFetchRequest, specify a compound “AND” predicate created from the individual subpredicates, and pass that to the enumerateContacts(with:) method called on the current CNContactStore:

import Contacts
          let phoneNumber = CNPhoneNumber(stringValue: "+1 555 555 1234")
          let phoneNumberPredicate = CNContact.predicateForContacts(matching: phoneNumber)
          let emailPredicate = CNContact.predicateForContacts(matchingEmailAddress: "johnny@example.com")
          var fetchRequest = CNContactFetchRequest(keysToFetch: [
          CNContactGivenNameKey as CNKeyDescriptor,
          CNContactFamilyNameKey as CNKeyDescriptor
          ])
          fetchRequest.predicate =
          NSCompoundPredicate(andPredicateWithSubpredicates: [
          phoneNumberPredicate,
          emailPredicate
          ])
          let store = CNContactStore()
          try store.enumerateContacts(with: fetchRequest) { (contact, _) in
          // ...
          }
          

Updating Location While Airborne

iPads are especially popular among pilots, who use them for navigation and flight planning. If you’re working on an app geared for folks up in the cockpit, you’ll be delighted to hear that CLLocationManager now has something just for you in iOS 12.

The activityType property has been around for a while, but remains a lesser-known configuration option for CLLocationManager. If you use a location manager to track changes in position over time, a quick “low-hanging fruit” optimization is to specify how you expect users to be perambulating. Until now, these modes of transportation have been strictly terrestrial: automotive, walking / running / biking, what have you. But in iOS 12, you can specify the airborne activity type and let your app’s motion tracking algorithms soar!

import CoreLocation
          let manager = CLLocationManager()
          manager.activityType = .airborne // ✈️
          

Detecting Flat Device Orientation

Have you ever wanted to determine whether an iOS device was laying flat on a surface, but were loath to do two equality checks in the process? Good news! In iOS 12, there’s a new convenience property: isFlat.

import UIKit
          // iOS 12+
          UIDevice.current.orientation.isFlat
          // iOS <= 11.4
          UIDevice.current.orientation == .faceUp ||
          UIDevice.current.orientation == .faceDown
          

Auto-filling New Passwords and One-Time Codes in Text Fields

Apple goes to heroic lengths to make user input pleasant on iOS devices. Yet despite their best efforts, the fact remains: the experience of typing on a featureless piece of smooth glass is always going to pale in comparison to a proper hardware keyboard (discontentment about the latest MacBook models notwithstanding).

To minimize the amount of text-entry drudgery, iOS 10 introduced the textContentType property for controls conforming to the UITextInputTraits protocol — namely UITextField and UITextView. By providing one of the enumeration values you declare the semantic value of the control, which allows for details like certain name and address components to be auto-filled based on the current user’s information.

iOS 12 and tvOS 12 expand on this by adding two new content types: UITextContentTypeNewPassword and UITextContentTypeOneTimeCode.

When you specify the .newPassword content type in conjunction with the passwordRules property , Password AutoFill can automatically generate new passwords according to the login requirements of the system.

textField.textContentType = .newPassword
          textField.passwordRules = .init(descriptor:
          "allowed: ascii-printable; minlength: 8;"
          )
          

When you specify the .oneTimeCode content type, the text field can automatically forward two-factor authentication codes received via SMS.

textField.textContentType = .oneTimeCode
          

That wraps up this round of iOS 12 diff spelunking. Of course, this is an enormous release, so we look forward to cover many more new APIs in greater depth in the weeks to come.

Do you have any suggestions about what we should cover next? Please get in touch via Twitter!

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codesujal
565 days ago
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some neat iOS 12 developer details here...
West Hartford, CT
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