Monday, July 21, 2008

Recommended Reading

Our own print edition's commentary on Steve King's recent behavior wasn't the only such piece published today. Iowa Independent also drew attention to some recent remarks they considered to be inappropriate.

But regardless of how anyone feels about King, I'm certainly glad I live in Iowa rather than in Turkey. It's not as though my homosexuality is immediately apparent to everyone I meet, but I certainly don't make any effort to hide it--and I've never felt threatened in Iowa City. However, given this chilling account out of Istanbul, I can't say I'd act the same way if I lived there.

Continuing on with the depressing news, more questions are being raised about the reliability of DNA-matching databases. This really ought to remind us that we always need to be careful about integrating new technologies into our criminal justice system before we're completely sure of their reliability.

In somewhat confusing news, the Iraqi government seems to be pretty confident foreign combat troops will be able to be out of the country by some time in 2010--but this is after Iraq's prime minister first made a similar comment before seemingly back-tracking on the issue. It will be interesting to see how all this plays out in both the American and Iraqi elections.

Retreating to the realm of techno-optimism, which is one of my favorite safe havens, I'm happy to pass along data suggesting that 25 percent of the people on Earth will be online by 2012. Hopefully, computer translation will be good enough by that point to tear down the language barrier that has divided humanity for so long.

Finally, if you're not looking forward to all the typing and clicking you'll have to do to in the future if your job requires you to work primarily online, I have some good news. Technology that literally allows computers to read people's minds is already here and improving rapidly. Keyboards and mice may well go the way of the floppy drive sooner than most people imagine.

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