Month: October 2011

Apple takes its music open source


The Unofficial Apple Weblog reported tonight that Apple took its lossless audio codec and made it open source. Apple Lossless Audio Codec (or ALAC for short) is a way to compress audio files without losing any audio quality. Uncompressed, the ALAC files match the originals exactly. This is good news because previously the exact method of the codec was not known. People have reverse-engineered so you could play ALAC files with other media software other […]

Martha Nussbaum on Great Soul: Stay in South Africa


Photo by Jerry Bauer Martha Nussbaum has a book review in this week’s edition of The Nation. She tackles Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India┬áby Joseph Lelyveld. Two things stand out: There were attempts by Hindu nationalists to censor the book after articles in The Daily Mail and the Wall Street Journal used the book as trying to slander Gandhi’s good name. The Indian publisher brought the book to market regardless. Nussbaum […]

What, me marry? Kate Bolick weighs in on changing marital mores


The cover story of the November issue of The Atlantic centers around the decline of marriage, the rise of independent women, and the decline of the modern American male. In the article called All the Single Ladies, Kate Bolick starts in a very personal way, relating the story of her own experiences with love and the desire to maintain independence. And throughout the article bounces back between Bolick’s personal take on marriage and the words […]

Gini coefficient: U.S. income inequality continues to grow


In 1912, an Italian named Corrado Gini published a paper that described a statistical method for showing inequality. His mathematical formula is known as the Gini coefficient. Economists use the Gini coefficient to show income inequality. The result of the equation is a real number from 0 to 1. A result of 0 means that everyone in the group, say, all adults in the U.S., has an equal income. If the result is 1, that […]

Two podcasts: Science and beats for your listening pleasure


I’ve listened to two podcasts lately that are both really great. One of them is all talk: Radiolab from NPR’s New York station WNYC. And the other one is all music: Modcast from Modular People. Radiolab is a podcast about science, and it’s fascinating. Each show hovers over a different theme, and if you look through their archive, there’s a lot there. If you subscribe through iTunes, you can download shows from the beginning. Radiolab […]