Apologies for the paucity in poasting the past couple of weeks. My laptop finally gave up the ghost and had to be sent to repairs before a replacement was ready, which caused lag in IRL work, which had to be made up when I acquired a workstation again. It’s also more difficult to start up again after taking a long (if inadvertent) break. Obviously, all this put a major crimp in my blogging activity. I suppose we’ll start with an Open Thread to get up to speed.
- Scott Alexander: Cortical Neuron Number Matches Intuitive Perceptions Of Moral Value Across Animals
- spandrell: Acceleration by Yang
- Robert Stark: Andrew Yang and the Post-Nationalist Future
- Peter Frost: Autumn in China
- The abundance of jobs and empty housing will suck in immigrants [into China] from poorer countries, initially from Southeast Asia and then increasingly from South Asia and Africa. The African influx into Asia will be the big surprise of the 21st century, being especially noticeable in Malaysia and South China.
- Scott Alexander: 40% of Americans are implicit supporters of eugenics. So why is it taboo?
- Insomniac Resurrected: Rus’ ain’t Rome: “The Eastern Slavic Umma is Way more Integrated”
- 96% chance Zelesnky will win in 2nd round of Ukrainian elections (PredictIt)
- 5th Anniversary of the Russian “Occupation” of Crimea. Their power production went from 160MW to 2GW.
- Russiagate Requiems:
- Bershidsky: RIP Russiagate
- Michael Tracey: I Warned Early On Russiagate Would Help Trump. Now You Can See Why
- Taibbi: It’s official: Russiagate is this generation’s WMD
- O’Loughlin, John, and Gerard Toal. 2019. “The Crimea Conundrum: Legitimacy and Public Opinion after Annexation.” Eurasian Geography and Economics, March, 1–22.
- Max Blumenthal: A Very Incomplete List of Sinister Things Vladimir Putin/Russia/‘the Russians’ Have Been Accused of Doing
- *powerful comment* Dmitry on what Masha Gaidar has been up to
- “No religion” has become most predominant US religion.
- Syncs with my observations of America’s rapid Europeanization.
- سليمان Sulaiman Gu: “A WeChat poll of Chinese users finds 60% of the 2,000+ respondents see the New Zealand mosque massacre as a revenge and “extremely sympathize” with the killer after reading his manifesto of terror. 中国人民微信发声：我们非常同情对穆斯林复仇的新西兰杀手“
- Caius Julius Caesar Mussolini is running for office in Italy on a nationalist platform.
- Manufacturing wages in China are way above Latin America’s and converging on Portugal.
Science & Culture
- gwern reviews Stalker (1979)
- Smith, Cory J., Oscar Castanon, Khaled Said, Verena Volf, Parastoo Khoshakhlagh, Amanda Hornick, Raphael Ferreira, et al. 2019. “Enabling Large-Scale Genome Editing by Reducing DNA Nicking.” bioRxiv.
- To extend the frontier of genome editing and enable the radical redesign of mammalian genomes, we developed a set of dead-Cas9 base editor (dBE) variants that allow editing at tens of thousands of loci per cell by overcoming the cell death associated with DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) and single-strand breaks (SSBs). We used a set of gRNAs targeting repetitive elements – ranging in target copy number from about 31 to 124,000 per cell. dBEs enabled survival after large-scale base editing, allowing targeted mutations at up to ~13,200 and ~2610 loci in 293T and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), respectively, three orders of magnitude greater than previously recorded. These dBEs can overcome current on-target mutation and toxicity barriers that prevent cell survival after large-scale genome engineering.
- Khosravi, Pegah, Ehsan Kazemi, Qiansheng Zhan, Jonas E. Malmsten, Marco Toschi, Pantelis Zisimopoulos, Alexandros Sigaras, et al. 2019. “Deep Learning Enables Robust Assessment and Selection of Human Blastocysts after in Vitro Fertilization.” Npj Digital Medicine 2 (1): 21.
- Much better embryo selection with IVF through deep learning.
- US population density 1790-2010
- *Amerotriumphalism* Loyalka, Prashant, Ou Lydia Liu, Guirong Li, Igor Chirikov, Elena Kardanova, Lin Gu, Guangming Ling, et al. 2019. “Computer Science Skills across China, India, Russia, and the United States.”
- We find that seniors in the United States substantially outperform seniors in China, India, and Russia by 0.76–0.88 SDs and score comparably with seniors in elite institutions in these countries. Seniors in elite institutions in the United States further outperform seniors in elite institutions in China, India, and Russia by ∼0.85 SDs.
- Richard Dawkins asks why not boost IQs.
- Guillaume Durocher: The Hellenic Canon
- Mollica Francis, and Piantadosi Steven T. n.d. “Humans Store about 1.5 Megabytes of Information during Language Acquisition.” Royal Society Open Science 6 (3): 181393.
Humor & Powerful Takes
- Lance Welton: Lunatics Taking Over the Asylum: Oliver D. Smith, RationalWiki, And The Wikipedeans
- Donorbox refuses to cuck before Buzzfeed scum
- Jared Taylor gets banned from EU on request of Based Poland.