Links: The glue tools, the nature of information, and more!

* “The Campaign to Shut Down Crucial Documentary Tool youtube-dl Continues – And So Does the Fight to Save It.” I use YouTube-dl routinely, with the “-x” option to grab audio-only.

* “Love Is Love: Workplace Edition.” With a caveat like “Self-referential warning: If this post is true, then it is not safe for work (NSFW). Otherwise, you have nothing to worry about,” how could you not be intrigued?

* Putin and the dictator trap. Information and information quality matter.

* Will China’s growth slow—and will the country never catch the U.S. in per-capita terms? Maybe. If a person predicts enough things, some of them will turn out to be true, and the others will be quietly forgotten.

* “How Intel Financialized and Lost Leadership in Semiconductor Fabrication.” Like Boeing did before them. There is a good essay on the value of in-house expertise that is congruent with this. I did see an Internet commenter observe that Intel lost leadership in semiconductors simply because they tried a bunch of stuff to continue die shrinks and none of them worked, while TSMC mastered extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, and the “financialization” aspects is secondary at best. I don’t know which view is right.

* “Why Are Scholars Such Snitches? The university bureaucracy has been hijacked for political grudge matches and personal vendettas.” Consistent with my anecdotal observations. Matt Yglesias is optimistic about higher education, while noting that the number of 18 year olds is dropping, and that likely explains much of higher ed’s challenge. I’m struck by the difference between what Internet autodidacts think about education versus what providing education to actual, normal 18 year olds feels like. * Sam Altman thinks US college education is nearer to collapse than it appears. Maybe; I’d be curious to see numbers and dates attached to that comment.

* “It’s 70 degrees warmer in Antarctica. Scientists are flabbergasted.” World response: indifference. There are only about 13,000 ClimeWorks subscribers. What should that tell us? In addition, consider “Climate politics for the real world,” which reflects the sort of things I’ve been saying. At the same time surveys and the media claim concern about the climate, everyone is (or rather “was”) buying trucks and SUVs. What should we infer from that?

* Why America can’t build quickly any more.

* “Petty Thieves Plague San Francisco. ‘These Last Two Years Have Been Insane.’” I’d have thought we’d already see a backlash, but not yet, apparently.

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