Links 4/14/15

Links for you. Science:

Threadwing antlions: giraffe monsters turning into duck-faced fairies
The Pacific Ocean may have entered a new warm phase — and the consequences could be dramatic
Incubator backs emerging research at Broad Institute
New monkey species revealed thanks to distinctive penis (news you can use…)
Brought by Wild Neighbors, Deadly Bird Flu Attacks Turkey Flocks

Other:

The Unlikely Paths of Grant and Lee: The two men met at Appomattox. The loser would become a role model, the victor an embarrassment (this is why historical revisionism must always be fought)
After 50 years, a D.C. store will close ‘due to gentrification’
Jittery Pixels; Everything Garbled: Learn about JPEG, Lossy compression, and the one artifact that doesn’t belong in a museum
The Remarkable Persistence of Crackpot Economics in the GOP
This is our best look at Hillary Clinton’s economic agenda (how this is supposed to rally the base escapes me. 2016 is going to be awful)
Put the “Punk” back in “Steampunk”
Dick Cheney embodies much that is wrong with today’s America
“Trying to get jobs with a psychiatric history. And that’s been the story of why I’ve been homeless.”
Neighborhood Opposition Against Pepco-Exelon Merger Continues To Grow
The IRS sucks because Republicans made it suck
An Emotional Audit: IRS Workers Are Miserable and Overwhelmed. Paying taxes to the IRS is no fun. Neither is working there
Chicago Mayoral Race Results: “Rahm, They Tell Me You Are Crooked, and I Answer: Yes, It Is True. Period.”
How I Saved The World
How Harry Reid Tapped Liberal Bloggers to Stop Bush’s Agenda (you’re welcome)

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1 Response to Links 4/14/15

  1. David J. Littleboy says:

    The JPEG rant is silly and wrong. Sure, specify insane levels of compression, and you mess up images. But that’s like saying steak knives are bad because you can cut yourself. If you overlay an original tiff image with the jpeg compressed version in photoshop and take the difference, the number of changed pixels is tiny for any but extreme levels of compression. Jpeg is a really impressive trick. In the images I work with, the problem of sharpening artifacts and sensor artifacts (especially my IR camera, whose low-pass filter has been partially removed*) is a way nastier problem. Even high levels of jpeg compression retain those glitches perfectly.

    *: http://www.pbase.com/davidjl/image/159444047/original
    This is level 5 (out of 10, where 10 is best) photoshop jpeg compression, and the funkiness in the sign with the number “6” is in the original.

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