Maybe, maybe

It’s Friday the 13th. Left handers day. And don’t forget to verify your backups.

Today is the day that President Biden will resign. Kamala Harris too. It will happen sometime this morning. Mike Lindell, the Harold Camping of pillows, made the prediction last month. He’s really been on a roll lately.

The data in these numbers and charts put together by Ryan Huddle and Peter Bailey-Wells might be why Governor Baker is holding back on stricter Covid measures. I hate to say it but Massachusetts is in pretty good shape. We’re highly vaccinated and our case numbers are still pretty low. Things could change. The Delta variant is pretty scary (It has an R0 between 5-9!) and vaccinated people can still get infected and become spreaders. Other states are struggling with high rates of infections which could come our way. And schools are getting ready to open, with masks or no masks for the kids but likely with mandated teacher vaccinations. So fingers crossed – here comes the fall.

Remember when everyone fled New York? New numbers show that the city has actually grown by over 600,000 people. Of course there’s an asterisk.

Originally conceived as a thought experiment, Frank Wilczek‘s time crystals are being put to use in a Google proof of concept for a breakthrough in quantum computing. Strange how these things work out. Wilczek appeared on Sean Carroll’s podcast recently and talked a little about it.

And the Perseids are back. Settle into that lawn chair. It should be a nice warm night for viewing.

Measuring and managing

Friday. Exhale.

With marijuana decriminalized in many places, drug-sniffing dogs are finding themselves out of a job.

Shira Schoenberg reports on an interesting initiative involving prosecutors in Berkshire County: A data analysis of plea bargains. If you thought police data was disjointed and hard to access, wait until you try to figure out what prosecutors are up to.

Is the protein folding problem solved? That would be sort of a huge deal. Here’s some background.

The other day I noticed that the signage for the Kinsale Pub on Center Plaza was still up, despite it being closed since last fall. That seemed optimistic. And now Marc Hurwitz is reporting that it could be reopening at some point in the near future.

And the Moynihan Train Hall is beautiful to look at. But it’s hard to find a place to sit down.

Ten foot pole

It’s Tuesday, July 13th. Embrace your geekness.

What will happen when all the stimulus money goes away? We should know by next year. I think there’s a good plan in place. (I hope there’s a good plan in place.)

After once being a big supporter, Geoff Diehl is revising his position on Donald Trump. Apparently the Trump purity test doesn’t apply locally. Also, influential members of the Massachusetts GOP are pushing for chairman Jim Lyons to step aside to allow for a more moderate, less Trumpian leadership to guide the party ahead of the Governor’s race. As Dana Carvey’s Church Lady used to say, “how convenient.”

The Bolt Bus shut down ‘temporarily’ when riders disappeared during the pandemic. Some said the Bolt was finished for good. But apparently they’re planning to return. So that’s good.

Nice to see that Bostonians are getting back to normal, complaining about First World hardships. Beth Teitell reports that people are missing out on cannolis, tennis games, and in-ground pool installations because of all the rain. Oh, the humanity! At least somebody saw a rainbow. In New York, people are coming out of the pandemic with a slightly better attitude, noting happily how clean and uncluttered with passengers the subways are.

And Maggot Brain, one of the best albums of the 1970s, is 50 years old this month. Christopher Weingarten pays tribute.

Hands out

It’s a beautiful sunny Wednesday.

Discussions about crime in San Francisco are getting nasty.

Now that legislators are holding on to federal stimulus money to disperse as they see fit, they will have to deal with the special interests lining up for their slice of the pie. And they all want a big slice. Meanwhile, the governor has been allocated only about 5% of the money to apply to strategic initiatives like housing. That’s a shame, says the Globe Editorial Board. I agree.

Rank-choice voting has been dealt a setback after election officials in New York screwed up their vote tallying process. The screw up may not have had anything to do with rank choice but the unfortunate association is now in place. Eric Adams is projected to win the primary but a hand count will be required.

The Apple fitness and watch apps track active calories, exercise and standing as the primary health metrics. Steps are not one of the big three. I always wondered about that as I walked in circles in the living room trying to get my 10,000 steps each day. Now, it looks like Apple knew something I didn’t. 10,000 steps is not really that big of a deal.

And Alexandra Petri considers what a Fox weather channel might look like. Dark clouds, indeed.

The privilege of incumbency

A cool, cloudy early July Saturday. Today’s word is inimical.

Is it hurricane season already? Apparently it is. Say hello to Elsa.

Acting Mayor and candidate Kim Janey is taking full advantage of the position she was put into. At least one of the other candidate isn’t very happy with that.

There’s been another supply-chain ransomware attack. This one targeted Kaseya’s VSA. Seems to be pretty widespread. Meanwhile, the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has released a new ransomware assessment module for its Cyber Security Assessment Tool. Or, in federal speak, CISA has released RRA to supplement CSET to help organizations protect IT, OT, or ICS assets. I can’t imagine why people find this stuff confusing.

Shakespeare in the Park (Central) is coming back. But one of my favorite parts of the experience, getting a coffee and waiting in on line for tickets on the morning of the show, has been scrapped. That’s too bad.

And after 20 years, the US military is finally out of Afghanistan. We left a lot of stuff behind, including a bunch of abandoned Pokemon GO characters, now left to wander aimlessly around the Bagram Air Base.