Searched for quartz-obsession in this user's bookmarks. Found 17 results

1: Ideal number of pages that a checklist should have, according to Gawande

2: Types of checklists Gawande describes: DO-CONFIRM, in which you complete the tasks from memory and then read over the checklist to make sure you haven’t missed anything; and READ-DO, in which you perform the tasks on the checklist step by step

37%: Scotland’s decline in surgical mortality rates since the WHO checklist was implemented in 2008

100: Hours each Apollo 11 astronaut logged familiarizing themselves … [more]
8 days ago by terry
The practice may be winding down in Spain—60% of Spaniards say they never siesta, perhaps because high unemployment means workers want to show their bosses that they’re pulling long hours. But other countries still participate, including Greece, the Philippines, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Nigeria, Italy, and China, where “heads down” time after lunch is considered a constitutional right.
sleep  society 
10 days ago by terry
In 2011, Wales told Esquire that one of his favorites is the entry on the Metal Umlaut. Quartz editors nominated the following as their favorite Wikipedia pages: Bloop, List of largest cosmic structures, Gardiner’s Island, The hum, List of common misperceptions, Observable universe, Sodor’s legend of the lost treasure, Animals with fraudulent diplomas, Longest flights, Emperor Norton, Inventors killed by their own inventions, Impossible color, and What Wikipedia is not. And you could spend a… [more]
wikipedia  internet  education  information  web 
4 weeks ago by terry
Heavy metal
When fans of metal listen to the music, they don’t feel rage, anger, or despair, but “power, joy, peace, and wonder,” according to research published last year. In fact, a huge survey in 2010 sought to categorize people by their musical tastes, and found a significant overlap between metal and opera fans, who shared “similarly creative and gentle personalities.”
5 weeks ago by terry
Ampersands: A beloved character
The ampersand is also a survivor. It began life as a shortcut for scribes and proved just as useful for early typesetters, eventually working its way into the English alphabet as the 27th letter. We collectively dropped it from the ABCs, and the decline of handwriting and manual typesetting made it less useful. But its flexibility and grace have kept it on our business cards and movie posters.
writing  language  design 
10 weeks ago by terry
Salvator Mundi
And now it’s gone. Salvator Mundi was supposed to have gone on display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi last year but the exhibition was canceled. The French government wants to exhibit the painting to mark the 500th anniversary of Leonardo’s death, but the entity believed to be in possession of it—the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism—hasn’t gotten back to them.

Where in the world—and, for that matter, what—is Salvator Mundi… [more]
art  painting  davinci 
may 2019 by terry
The word ellipsis might be Greek for “to fall short,” but the unassuming symbol has taken on more life than its size implies, a common phenomenon for punctuation marks in lives that are becoming increasingly text-heavy. But as the design and display choices made by tech giants and software designers influence more and more of our behavior, we paused to consider how much weight three little dots can carry… [more]
writing  punctuation  language 
may 2019 by terry
Drawing from her experience as an artist, Graham decided to create a solution to simply paint over mistakes as she would on a canvas. She mixed fast-drying white tempera paint with water and brought the concoction to the office along with a watercolor brush to discreetly cover up her typos. Soon, other secretaries at the bank were asking for the makeshift correction fluid, which Graham called “Mistake Out.” She would stay up all night to meet demand, eventually paying her son and his friends… [more]
office  typewriters  invention 
april 2019 by terry
95 million: Documents classified by the United States in 2012

2 million: Employees the National Archives estimates it would take, given a year and a half, to review one year’s worth of current classified output of one US intelligence agency

14,462: Peak size of the US government’s World War II-era Office of Censorship, whose duties included redacting letters
language  politics 
april 2019 by terry
Photo booths
1929: Surrealist René Magritte uses the new technology for his work Je ne vois pas la cachée dans la forêt (“I do not see the woman in the forest”).

1930s: Bluesman Robert Johnson takes a photo booth self-portrait; when he becomes a posthumous legend, it’s made into a US postage stamp.

1953: John and Jackie Kennedy step into a photo booth during their honeymoon.

1963-1966: Andy Warhol manipulates hundreds of photo booth images into silkscreen images… [more]
photography  technology 
april 2019 by terry
Chatbot therapy
Since virtual therapy seems to work, some innovators have started to suspect they could offer patients the same benefits of CBT—without a human on the other end. Services like Replika (an app intended to provide an emotional connection, not necessarily therapy) and Woebot (a therapy service that started in Facebook Messenger before breaking out on its own) allow human patients to interact with artificially intelligent chatbots for the purpose of improving their mental health… [more]
ai  mentalhealth  cbt  apps  chatbot 
february 2019 by terry
Small talk
In most parts of the world, small talk about the weather is a safe but flavorless topic of conversation. In the UK, however, weather talk is a cultural touchstone. In a 2010 survey of her countrymen, anthropologist Kate Fox found that 94% of respondents said they’d chatted about the weather within the last six hours; 38% had discussed it in the past 60 minutes.
society  culture 
january 2019 by terry
Exclamation points
A cardinal rule of good prose is that exclamation points should be used extremely sparingly. Contravening it might earn you a diagnosis of bangorrhea.

For grammarians, they are considered weak—why use a punctuation mark to express enthusiasm when you can do so using, you know, words? “Overuse annoys and distances the reader,” writes “grammar cop” Cheryl Norman. “Remember what F. Scott Fitzgerald said: ‘An exclamation point is like laughing at your own jokes.’”

And so it … [more]
language  grammar 
january 2019 by terry
“Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
In 2015, New Yorker food correspondent Helen Rosner stripped out the part of the apparent aggressor and concluded that the song is clearly about a “sexually aware woman worried about slut shaming.”

“The first two verses are both: (1) I have to go. (2) I’m having a great time, but (3) I’m scared of my family’s opinions,” Rosner wrote on Twitter. “She clearly wants to stay, is scared of the social ramifications of that choice, and in the end says ‘fuck society’s repressiveness… [more]
music  politics 
december 2018 by terry
VHS tapes
People have been able to consume their choice of music at home for more than a century, but it wasn’t until the mid-1970s that video was truly freed from the constraints of the multiplex and the network broadcast schedule—and not until the 1980s that it really became accessible.

That heyday didn’t last long. Just three decades separated the first VHS-format VCR from the last Hollywood hit distributed on video tape. But in that time, a lot of memories were created, and a new template for … [more]
historyoftechnology  video  television  technology 
november 2018 by terry
The magnetic stripe
Remember life before card swipes? The chunk-chunk of a credit-card imprinter, the rattle of hotel keys, the tinkle of subway tokens: Life was a little louder and a lot slower. Now we’ve left it all behind, all thanks to the ubiquitous, overlooked technology of a tiny strip of powder ironed onto a piece of plastic.
plastic  money  technology  commerce 
november 2018 by terry
Spooky music
During the 19th century, composers like Franz Liszt and Richard Wagner cracked the code of creepiness. The sonic dread they pioneered involved two key ingredients that horror movies and metal bands still use today: a forbidden sequence of notes known as “Satan in music,” and a spooky little ditty that Gregorian monks sang about the apocalypse.
october 2018 by terry

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