When exposed to music by AC/DC, who articulated the null hypothesis that “rock and roll ain't noise pollution” in a song of the same name, lady beetles were less effective predators, resulting in higher aphid density and reduced final plant biomass relative to control (no music) treatments. While it is unclear what characteristics of sound generate these effects, our results reject the AC/DC hypothesis and demonstrate that altered interspecific interactions can transmit the indirect effects of anthropogenic noise through a community.

Infinite Blech

Google has dropped pagination of results and switched to infinite/continuous scrolling on the desktop.

This is a terrible user experience.

Click a link, decide you don't like it, browser-back. And where are you? You're almost back where you started. But instead of being where it was when you clicked it, the link you clicked is scrolled just off the top of the page. So if you don't remember what was below that link, you're in unknown territory.

Remember when Google just worked?


Gotta say... Heineken Zero is much better than I expected it to be. I was expecting something more like lightly-sugared hop squeezings. It tastes like a slightly lighter version of Heineken Light. Which, while maybe not the best beer in the world, does at least taste like beer. It's good enough I can have one (or two, or a hundred - no alcohol) and not have to pretend I like it. I actually like it just fine. It's handy.

I suppose if you don't like Heineken at all, you will not be impressed. But rather like the stuff - all versions.

Trump's Next Dinner Guest

AUSTIN, TX — A star who has experienced a meteoric rise in right-wing circles, 28-year-old conservative phenom Mason Finley is known solely for wearing a Nazi armband and crying, sources confirmed Tuesday. “Finley amassed millions of conservative viewers on his Discord channel, where the up-and-coming young GOP figure uploaded videos in which he is seen sobbing alone in a room as he sits with a swastika strapped to his arm,” said Republican strategist Gary Woodfall, claiming that despite being virtually unknown even a few months ago, the teary-eyed young man who wears Nazi memorabilia has already appeared at CPAC as well as Turning Point USA summits.

303 Creative v. Elenis Isn’t About LGBTQ Rights [yes it is]

It's insane.

David French, in The Atlantic:

But though the state can demand that businesses provide goods and services to all comers without regard to race, sex, sexual orientation, and other protected categories, it cannot demand that businesses or individuals engage in speech proclaiming messages that they oppose, and, as Smith argues, designing websites is a form of speech.

Programming really isn't speech. Source code isn't written for humans. It's written for computers to tell them the steps to follow to perform tasks for humans. It's not a conversation a programmer has with another person. With the exception of teaching programmers how to write it, humans generally only read source code to make sure it's telling the computer to do the right thing; once that's sorted out, humans are generally very happy to never look at the source code again.

Note that French is agreeing that programming is speech.

Then the whole thing gets worse in a couple of ways.

But here’s where 303 Creative gets truly strange. The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals held that Smith was engaging in “pure speech” and that Colorado was compelling her speech, but it ruled for Colorado anyway. The reasoning in the majority opinion was extraordinary.

“This case does not present a competitive market,” the court said. “Rather, due to the unique nature of Appellants’ services, this case is more similar to a monopoly. The product at issue is not merely ‘custom-made wedding websites,’ but rather ‘custom-made wedding websites of the same quality and nature as those made by Appellants.’ In that market, only Appellants exist.”

Thus, because Smith possessed a monopoly over her own services, the state had a heightened interest in ensuring access to her work.

A monopoly over her own services? Shouldn't the FTC step in and break her up, for the good of the marketplace?

Become a monopoly! $6.48 in paperback. Such a high barrier to entry!

But French is being serious here. He approves of this nonsense. Because he is a homophobic nutbag, his take on this is:

“If rights of conscience attach to corporations worth trillions, shouldn’t they also attach to a single artist whose alleged ‘monopoly’ is merely in the sweat of her own brow?”

So the logic is:

Given: programming is speech
Given: website designers are artists
Therefore: web design is not a competitive market
Therefore: website designers are individual monopolists
Therefore: because large corporations can have morals [!!], these micro-monopolies should be allowed to express their morals through discrimination.

Remarkable, the lengths some people will go just to justify their unexamined fear of other people.

Illusion of Rising Action

"OMG Trump is in new legal jeopardy!" Repeat every two months for six years.

It's clear that Trump's narrative arc doesn't follow the standard story form of exposition, rising action, climax, denouement.

But, I'm starting to think his arc is more like a Shepard Tone:

Always rising, somehow. Yet never reaching a satisfying climax. And never really resolving.

Which is why it's so very very annoying.