The Steady Erosion of Privacy at Home

The World's Top Soil Is Disappearing ; How Dogs' Eyes Evolved to Pull at Our Heartstrings ; and More Picks

Home privacy, tech
The author writes, “Public spaces are under constant surveillance from AI cameras, cellphone towers and advertisers that can follow people from home to work and back again. But life inside the home, too, is increasingly transparent to watchful outsiders, the result of mushrooming internet-connected devices that consumers are setting up in their dens and bedrooms. What's happening: Internet-connected devices can pick up your voice, interests, habits, TV preferences, meals, times home and away. ... The gadgets send all this back to the tech companies where they were made. The big picture: Constant surveillance at home is not yet a reality — but it's the direction we're moving in, says Jay Stanley, senior policy counsel at the ACLU.” Photo credit: Kona Gallagher / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)
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Only 60 Years of Farming Left If Soil Degradation Continues (Chris)

From Scientific American: “Generating three centimeters of top soil takes 1,000 years, and if current rates of degradation continue all of the world’s top soil could be gone within 60 years, a senior UN official said.”

Cement Produces More Pollution Than All the Trucks in the World (Chris)

The author writes, “After wresting deep cuts from the energy industry, policymakers looking to extend the fight against global warming are increasingly focusing on construction materials and practices as a place to make further reductions. The companies are working on solutions, but buyers are reluctant to pay more.”

‘Pay to Play — or Else’: Florida’s Banking Regulator Alleges CFO Corruption (Reader Steve)

From the Tampa Bay Times: “A lawsuit raises questions about inappropriate lobbyist influence in CFO Jimmy Patronis’ office.”

Few US Outlets Notice as Trump’s Sanctions Kill Thousands in Venezuela (Gerry)

The author writes, “Aside from monitoring non-US outlets to catch important facts that are ‘missed’ by the US media about Washington’s role in the word, readers would be well-advised to watch for individual journalists who, even within corporate media, are willing to break from the herd.”

About Those Puppy Dog Eyes… (Mili)

The author writes,Researchers have found that dogs have evolved muscles around their eyes, which allow them to make expressions that particularly appeal to humans. A small facial muscle allows dog eyes to mimic an ‘infant-like’ expression which prompts a ‘nurturing response.’”

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