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[links] Link salad is the blue canary in the outlet by light switch

The Courtroom of Teaching — A bit more on kindness.

Genes predispose some people to focus on the negative — Interesting. Explains some people I know. (Via David Goldman.)

European origins laid bare by DNADNA from ancient skeletons has revealed how a complex patchwork of prehistoric migrations fashioned the modern European gene pool.

The Science May Be Settled, But the Economics Isn’t — An interesting take on climate change. I have issues with this, for example, is the drowning of Miami an acceptable cost?, but still interesting.

Not All Like That: Jay Bakker, Bishop Gene Robinson, Mel White, Ray Boltz And More! — NALT is an interesting project, an attempt by moderate and liberal Christians to counter the overwhelming media and culture dominance of hate-fueled conservative Christianists, This kind of thing is good for me, because I’ve reached the point in my life where my default assumptions about anyone who self-identifies as Christian are extremely unkind and almost surely inappropriate. Still, there are tens of millions of Bible believers who hate my gay friends with a passion, are working very hard to deeply miseducate everyone’s children, and campaign relentlessly to punish women and the poor. None of that reflects the values of the Bibles on my bookshelves, but smug, hateful Republican Jesus surely is the public face of American Christianity today. It can be very hard for me to see Christians in any other light. NALT is speaking to people like me, to keep me from surrendering to prejudice. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Can we stop calling them “conservatives”?The modern “conservative” movement isn’t conservative except in the sense that it desires to protect white male Christian privilege. As a matter of tactics and public policy, it’s a radical revolutionary movement.

In ‘Dallas 1963,’ A City Of Rage, Seized By ‘Civic Hysteria’ — As Steve Buchheit says, Just in case you think that the current insanity among conservatives is a new phenomenon. (Via, oddly enough, Steve Buchheit.)

Trucker protest hits Beltway but causes no major delays, authorities say — Weren’t these guys supposed to have a million people supporting them or something? What is it about right wing true believers that leads them to think all of America is just itching for a chance to rise up in their defense?

Lindsey Graham: No Debt Deal Without House GOP Support — Further evidence that this whole shutdown is in a very real sense about allowing John Boehner to keep his job as Speaker of the House. Hey, John, how many more millions have to suffer for your ego?

A strange gameThe GOP has become what it has long claimed of Democrats: un-American bullies who don’t like our system of government, and don’t particularly care for most of our people either. Except for Sarah Palin’s “real Americans”, of course. The GOP loves them. Too bad for the rest of us.

Sarah Palin joins Ted Cruz as new face of shutdownInterestingly, Palin, Cruz and the Tea Partyers are holding no such protests to fight the shutdown of clinical trials for cancer patients, or the cut-off of death benefits for family members of US troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan during the GOP shutdown. Then again, this was never about real people for the GOP. The Dunning-Kruger party is on the rise!

?otD: Have you built a little birdhouse in your soul?


10/14/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.25 hours (very fitful)
Body movement: 30 minutes (stationary bike)
Weight: 240.6
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing laws passed under the Constitutional process and fully subjected to judicial review: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

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[links] Link salad jets out to San Diego

The Story Coaster — Hahahah. (Via David Goldman.)

Lakeside Backstory — More on the movie, and me, from Waterloo Productions.

Rev-e-rie – Jay Lake, Cancer, and God #4: Prevailing — My friend UMC pastor Dave Raines continues his meditations on life and death.

How Doctors Die — Yeah. Sigh. (Via Ellen Eades.)

Finding Cancer Cells in the BloodTechnologies that can pull tumor cells from patients’ blood are giving researchers an unprecedented look at cancer.

How Smart Dust Could Spy On Your BrainIntelligent dust particles embedded in the brain could form an entirely new form of brain-machine interface.

Hawkmoths zap bats with sonic blasts from their genitals — I’ve been on dates like that. (Via David Goldman.)

Design Drawing for Avanti — Oooooh.

Time-lapse video of Interstate 84 highway repaving project — (Via Lisa Costello.)

T. rex leaves tooth in would-be lunch’s tail, paleontologists find it

New Map Shows Where Nature Protects U.S. CoastCoastal habitats like reefs and marshes protect people from natural disasters—in the right locations.

Hunger Games, U.S.A.Something terrible has happened to the soul of the Republican Party. We’ve gone beyond bad economic doctrine. We’ve even gone beyond selfishness and special interests. At this point we’re talking about a state of mind that takes positive glee in inflicting further suffering on the already miserable. Conservatives have convinced themselves that there is a “culture of dependency”, and that breaking the cycle of that culture is for the public good. Deep cruelty cloaked in high minded policy is still deep cruelty.

QotD?: Going to Comic-Con?


7/16/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 6.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (stationary bike)
Weight: 249.6
Number of FEMA troops on my block supplying black kids with Skittles: 0
Currently reading: Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg; Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey

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[links] Link salad sees that morning mists are parting to reveal

The cover art of my German editions of Mainspring and Escapement has been nominated for the Kurd-Laßwitz-Preis in the Beste Grafik category &mash; Which doesn’t really have much to do with me directly, but is still pretty cool. Kudos to illustrator Max Meinzold.

Why Do We Hate Certain Words?The curious phenomenon of word aversion.

‘I’m Google’ by Dina Kelberman: A Visual Exploration of Google Image Search — A very cool digital art project. Direct link here. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

A Japanese medical blog reports on my Whole Genome Sequencing

End-of-life talks lacking between doctors, patients — I’ve already begun to have these conversations with my physician.

Cancer Drug That Shrinks All Tumors Set To Begin Human Clinical Trials — Huh. This is a treatment for primary tumors, not for metastases, so it probably isn’t relevant to me personally, but it’s still pretty damned cool.

Messenger RNAs Could Create a New Class of DrugsNew partnerships could help bring a novel class of biopharmaceutical to patients.

Steampunk iPad: 1922 — Another Shorpy classic. Hahah.

Scientists successfully create living embryo of an extinct species

Collision Course? A Comet Heads for Mars — Could have a significant impact on NASA programs there. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Melt may explain Antarctica’s sea ice expansionClimate change is expanding Antarctica’s sea ice, according to a scientific study in the journal Nature Geoscience. This is what science does. It looks at contradictory evidence and tries to work out the contradiction. Ideology simply says, “If I believe this, it must be true”, and ignores contradictory evidence. Guess which view is based in reality?

Oceans continue to warm, especially the deepsAltered patterns seen over past two decades. Amazing how the liberals can convince the entire planet to join in their climate change fraud. Any good conservative can tell you this is all wrong, no matter the evidence.

A New Map Of The U.S., Created By How Our Dollar Bills Move — Identifying functional regional boundaries through analysis of movements of paper currency. This is cool. (Via AH.)

1,200-year-old Egyptian text describes a shape-shifting Jesus — “Everybody need a mood lifter, Everybody need reverse polarity.” (Via [info]shsilver.)

Google and white Christians’ search for ‘persecution’Christians will never be happy until they stop being the kind of people who, as TBogg put it, “can’t sleep at night because they can’t wait to see how the world will offend them the next day.”

Elite in China Face Austerity Under Xi’s Rule — Good luck with that. (Via my Dad.)

While GOP Elites Soften On Gay Marriage, Local Leaders Haven’t Gotten The Message — That’s what happens when one of your political cornerstones is irrational bigotry with no objective or principled value. I see a principled opposition to abortion, for example, though it’s sadly obvious most opponents aren’t actually standing on principled objections. I see a principled stance in favor of widespread private gun ownership, though again it’s clearly based on willful ignorance, promulgation of bad data and wholesale suppression of the reality of firearms in private hands. But opposition to gay marriage? Nothing but a combination of religious bigotry and personal ick factors. There simply is no principled opposition to be found, other than nicely rationalized versions of bigotry and ick.

New GOP plan: Guns for domestic abusersAs president Obama visits Colorado to discuss guns, state GOP launches fight to protect batterers’ gun rights. Because nothing says compassionate conservatism like protecting a violent man’s right to a firearm.

Jim Carrey: Fox ‘News’ is “A media colostomy bag… a public health issue” — Well, duh. The polling on how misinformed (strongly in the direction of conservative bias) FOX News viewers are is remarkably consistent. It’s almost like media isn’t liberal or something.

QotD?: Ever been to the Blue Mountains?


4/2/2013
Writing time yesterday: 2.0 hours (WRPA, specifically critique)
Hours slept: 7.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (stationary bike)
Weight: 245.6
Number of FEMA troops on my block building solar arrays to undermine the American fossil fuel industry: 0
Currently reading: Interesting Times by Terry Pratchett

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[links] Link salad worries some more, because worrying is what it does

The Macroeconomics of Middle Earth — Hahahah. (Snurched from [info]james_nicoll.)

In Portland, Tex-Mex fare rides again — One of my favorite cuisines, and one rarely found (even poorly executed) here in the foodie town of Portland. I miss Chuy’s from my Austin days, and especially the Hula Hut. (Via my Dad.)

Riding a horse across a frozen lake in Siberia — Also this wow factor as well: Frozen Bubbles Suspended Below Abraham Lake. (Both thanks to Lisa Costello.)

LROC Browse Gallery — Lunar pr0n. (Thanks to Gary Dierks.)

Futuristic highways in the Netherlands glow in the dark. — Weird and cool. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Test Room — This is a weird little squib from BLDG BLOG which happens to have an Oregon connection. Though that’s not the weird part.

Juggling by numbers: How notation revealed new tricks — Huh. Interesting. I have extremely modest skills as a juggler myself. (Snurched from Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Forbidden sphere — Weird security in the nuclear age. See also: Classifying a Shape and Illegal Numbers. The fascinating weirdness of security paranoia. (Via David Goldman.)

Why We Have a Right to Consumer GeneticsIt’s hard to get straightforward health guidance from personal genome tests, which are banned in some places. But one way to make them more meaningful is to let more people buy them.

World first as scientists create cancer-killing cells that can be injected into patients

The Myth of Harriet Tubman — A moving piece from Ta-Nehisi Coates that says some new-to-me things about race and racism.

Joseph Sciambra, Self-Described ‘Ex-Gay Porn Star,’ Claims Gay Men Anally Give Birth to the Devil — Are all religious conservatives insane? Or just the ones who have public voices? This guy’s on the same range of cruel lunacy as Dobson, Fischer, Franklin Graham and Huckabee. So unlike anything I ever found in the Bible, at least the New Covenant. It’s like faith makes them stupid and mean. Or maybe they started out stupid and mean and found a faith that fit those tendencies. (Via Mike Brotherton.)

The NRA Claims the AR-15 Is Useful for Hunting and Home Defense. Not Exactly. — Uh huh. (Via [info]danjite.)

Thoughts on the Second Amendment — A long but fascinating piece on the Second Amendment’s historical context and judicial interpretations thereof. I was struck by this comment on D.C. v. Heller: Apparently judicial activism is okay for decisions right-wingers happen to like, but not for decisions they don’t like. Well, duh. That’s a cornerstone of the justly famed principled intellectual consistency of American conservatism. More to the point: Americans have clearly stated that the blood of children is an acceptable price for the free availability of guns, and I do not see any marking on the wall that says, “When the pile of bodies reaches this line, things will change.” It is a sad commentary on us as a culture, but there you have it. (Via Steve Buchheit.)

Sen. Crapo pleads guilty to DWI, seeks ‘forgiveness and repentance’ — Another religious conservative moral scold has feet of clay. Not that this ever stops them from lecturing and legislating against behaviors they disapprove of in others.

O’Reilly: “Asian People Are Not Liberal, You Know, By Nature. They’re Usually More Industrious And Hard-Working” — Wow. Racist and classist and staggeringly stupid all in one. Conservative America, this is one of your leading voices. What does this say about you?

The Secret History of US Drone Strikes in 2012 — Just in case you thought everything was peachy Over There. America embarked on a decade plus of frenzied killing in response to 9-11, mostly of people who had nothing to do with the original event. How do you think they feel about us now?

Gulf Coast Lawmaker Votes Against Sandy ReliefRep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS), whose Mississippi district is situated on the Gulf Coast, was one of 67 Republicans on Friday to vote against a $9.7 billion relief package to victims of Hurricane Sandy. Stay classy, Mississippi. It’s not like the Feds gave you any money to help out after Hurricane Katrina. No, wait… I guess this is compassionate conservatism in action.

GOP’s obstructionism is suicide strategy — We should all be so lucky, The key to the suicide bomb strategy is to convince people that members of the conservative wing of the Republican Party are crazy enough to wreck the economy if they don’t get their way. I’m certainly convinced. The congressional GOP have become a basket of vandals and loons completely uninterested in a functional government. Which is the logical outcome of 30 years of “government is the problem” rhetoric, unfortunately for those of us who are still sane and wish to live in a functional society.

?otD: How carefree is your morning?


1/5/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.75 hours (WRPA, specifically research for a Cthulhu short)
Hours slept: 5.75 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (stationary bike)
Weight: n/a (forgot to weight before I ate)
Number of FEMA troops on my block teaching critical thinking skills to the children of conservatives: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

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[links] Link salad walks into the blood lab, says, “What is this, a joke?”

The joke threads are pretty funny: [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ] — Check them out.

Half-Drag — Some very curious portraits. (Via [info]willyumtx.)

What’s So Bad About a Boy Who Wants to Wear a Dress? — Nothing whatsoever.

My life with schizophrenia

Hopkins Treats Patient with Unknown Skin Disease — This is very strange. (Via David Goldman.)

The Velveteen RobotResearchers at MIT, Harvard, and Seoul National University have created a robotic worm. “So what?” you ask. They’re also making robotic horses—and robot hummingbirds, for goodness sake. What’s promising about the new robot worm, though—the Meshworm, as it’s called—is that it’s a different kind of robot.

Putting the brakes on climate change with… diamonds?Picking which substance to put in the stratosphere to cool the planet. Mmm. Geo-engineering. What could possibly go wrong?

You might be Paul Ryan if…. — Juan Cole is snarky, but with documentation. The justly famed intellectual consistency of the American Right precludes any possibility of hypocrisy on the part of a major Republican figure, so I’m sure Rush Limbaugh can explain all this away just fine.

Romney-Ryan and Religious Conservatives

Paul Ryan: An Inspired Choice That Says “We Can Fix This” — After eight years of breaking it under Bush, breaking things so badly that the country will be years recovering, why should any voter trust the GOP to fix what they broke?

?otD: Can you think of a better hobby than cancer?


8/13/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.25 hours (WRPA)
Body movement: 60 minute suburban walk
Hours slept: 6.0 (solid)
Weight: 238.4
Currently reading: The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski

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[links] Link salad is going to slide, slide in all directions

The paths and links of language and memory[info]scarlettina on language and culture.

An Unexpected Ass Kicking — On meeting history, and realizing he is wiser than you. This is just a wow blog post. (Thanks to [info]danjite.)

The Point of Exclamation — Ah, punctuation.

CBS & QMx Making Groovy Retro Star Trek Posters For Every TOS Episode — Oh, man, these Star Trek posters are fabricated of high-density awesome. (Snurched from Steve Buchheit.)

Curiosity Mars-Rover Landing: “Everything Worked Perfectly” — In which [info]davidlevine and I are quoted on the National Geographic Web site.

NASA’s Mars Rover Crashed Into a DMCA Takedown — Way to go, Scripps. That’s a solidly asshole move right there.

What made ‘Nasa Mohawk Guy’ such a successful meme? — Heh.

NASA welcomes striking new photos from the red planet after Mars rover nails the landing

Study: Cats wiping out backyard wildlife — The story says cat owners are offended by the study. Why? Duh. They’re predators.

Chart of the Day: Algobot Wars Now Rule Wall Street — It’s an interesting story, but the headline alone is worth the price of admission.

Warm extremes in Earth’s climate becoming more commonStudy argues increasingly severe events are the new normal. Weather is not climate, except eventually it is.

The lamentable state of protest today — Steve Buchheit with an entertaining rant.

Church, pastor charged in fake raid: ‘You can’t, in the name of religious liberty, engage in criminal activity’ — How is this not totally fucking nuts to any rational person? (Via [info]shsilver.)

Unimpressed MartyrsIf there is one thing I’m consistently irked by it’s the Persecution Envy of modern Western Christians. They live in a world where they have more religious freedom than at just about any time in history and yet you wouldn’t know that just by listening to them. Somehow this privileged group considers itself the most persecuted group in the world. Confidential to my Christian friends: Loss of privilege is not persecution. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Republicans Blasted Obama Administration For Warning About Right-Wing Domestic Terrorism — Gee, ya think? Real Americans with guns cannot be terrorists, just conservatism cannot fail the country.

?otD: Is there nothing you can measure anymore?


8/8/2012
Writing time yesterday: 1.0 hours (WRPA)
Body movement: 60 minute suburban walk
Hours slept: 6.25 (solid)
Weight: 236.4
Currently reading: The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski

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[links] Link salad knows there will be phantoms and fires by the road

If you haven’t already done so, don’t forget to vote in the One True Pop-Tart poll — Feel free to boost the signal on this one. I’ll close it in another couple of days.

I will be your dancing monkey, hat on the table. — Scott Lynch is helping people.

Parents can inflict emotional harm, not realize itParents and other caregivers who demean, bully, humiliate or otherwise emotionally abuse children may not know the harm they can cause and often do not get the help that they and their children need, says a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The fact that some reporter felt it necessary to write that lede makes me cringe, both as a parent and as a human being.

Steam powered USB drive — This made me laugh. Both cool and funny. (Thanks to David E. Vincent.)

Fire Tennis — The Slo Mo guys play around… (Thanks to [info]willyumtx.)

Vanishing VoicesNational Geographic with a photo essay on language loss.

Microbial Life In An Undersea Volcano, New Limits Of Life Defined — Mmm, extremophiles.

NASA releases low-res video of Mars rover descent — I think this is about two frames per second. Pretty cool stuff.

Curiosity update: Heat shield spotted! — In case you missed it, this is darned cool as well.

Obedience on the Job — Interesting squib about workplace relations.

US precipitation trends to drain 7 million jobs by 2050 — Nothing to see here, citizen. Move along. Don’t mind those lying climate change scientists in their government Ferraris.

Climate change is here — and worse than we thought — There goes that pesky reality again, interfering with the conservative narrative.

White Terrorism at Oak Creek: The Paranoid Style in American Violence — Remember just a few years ago when conservative outrage forced the Department of Homeland Security to withdraw a report on right wing terrorism in the United States? Yeah, neither does anyone else. Including Your Liberal Media. Because Real Americans with guns aren’t terrorists. Or something.

O’Connor: Declining approval for high court a ‘disappointment’Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor called the declining public approval of the high court a “great disappointment” and suggested the ruling in Bush v. Gore may have sparked the public’s loss of faith in the judicial branch. Ya think? Bush v. Gore, that travesty which you voted for, Madame Justice? Maybe if you’d been a little less nakedly partisan and little more focused on Constitutional jurisprudence back then, the Supreme Court wouldn’t have quite the black eye it does now.

Dick Cheney clarifies criticism of Sarah Palin: Process was a mistake — What I find hilarious about this article is the quote from Palin defending herself, near the top of the piece. It’s classic Palin word salad: barely intelligible, defensive and resentful. A brilliant way to confirm Cheney’s original point even while reporting on his FOX News apology tour.

Harry Reid’s Master Plan — Ta-Nehisi Coates on Harry Reid and Mitt Romney.

Why Romney and the Rich Will Never Really Get It[W]ealth and status decrease our feelings of compassion for others.

?otD: Have you seen the future?


8/7/2012
Writing time yesterday: 1.75 hours (WRPA)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 6.75 (solid)
Weight: 236.0
Currently reading: The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski; Near + Far by Cat Rambo

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[links] Link salad wonders if anyone got the number of that truck

Cello Wars — Um, wow. A Star Wars parody. At about two minutes in, this goes utterly over the edge. (Via [info]the_child.)

Notes Towards a Philosophy of Sleep — Interesting. (Via [info]tillyjane, a/k/a my mom.)

If evolution is all about survival of the fittest, why are we attracted to the cutest? — Hahahahahah.

Fruit flies offer DNA clue to why women live longer — Because science!

What If Huge NASA Mars Rover Crashes Sunday Night?

NASA chooses SpaceX to return US astronauts to space

Smooth Lumpsucker — The weird world of nature. (Via [info]scarlettina.)

The Incidental Art Of Penn State Football — Ta-Nehisi Coates with a fascinating photo.

Progressive religious voices not irrelevant, just ignoredWho decided that the faith and ethics and values of tens of millions of people, plus the interests and well-being of tens of millions of additional people, do not matter? What is the rationale for dismissing these folks as irrelevant while hanging on every outrageous word from right-wing evangelicals? That would be Your Liberal Media in action, as always, embracing and supporting the conservative narrative.

A Message To America’s Creationists From Jesus Of Nazareth You’ve become so suspicious of anyone and anything you label as “intellectual” that you’ve actually turned ignorance into a virtue. It’s not. It doesn’t make you a better, more loving, more righteous person to pretend you’re living in the 18th century while you take advantage of the antibiotics, airplanes, computers, and air conditioning that comes from the scientific progress of the 20th and 21st. It just makes you a tool. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

11 Eye-Opening Highlights From a Creationist Science Textbook — Wow. Just wow. (Via [info]controuble.)

Seriously – you’re embarrassing meSo fellow liberals – just shut the fuck up about running CFA out of town on a rail. If they are accused and convicted of discrimination against gay people, or Muslim people, or Atheist people, THEN you can call for punitive measures. Because then they would be guilty of breaking the law. Right now the only thing they’re guilty of is Level 10 Douchebaggery, which, last time I checked, was not a reason to discriminate against them, although it’s an excellent reason to stop eating their chicken. Seriously – you’re embarrassing me. Plus hilarious bonus graphic documenting the modern persecution of the Christians by population numbers!

Americans Want to Live in a Much More Equal Country (They Just Don’t Realize It) — (Thanks to [info]threeoutside.)

Debt, Depression, DeMarcoThere has been plenty to criticize about President Obama’s handling of the economy. Yet the overriding story of the past few years is not Mr. Obama’s mistakes but the scorched-earth opposition of Republicans, who have done everything they can to get in his way — and who now, having blocked the president’s policies, hope to win the White House by claiming that his policies have failed.

David Brody says tea party isn’t ‘far-right,’ just ‘constitutional’Slacktivist Fred Clark documents the Tea Party in their own words. Which is of course unfair, as any conservative will tell you about confusing the issue with facts.

Romneygaffe can’t even properly defend his own wife — Mmm. Olympic dressage.

?otD: What the heck happened?


8/4/2012
Writing time yesterday: 1.0 hours (30 minutes of revisions on Other Me, 30 minutes of WRPA)
Body movement: 60 minute coastal walk
Hours slept: 5.75 (solid)
Weight: 237.2
Currently reading: The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski

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