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19 Apr 18:16

Tools : Literacy Sieve - Chinese Text Project

by overbey
In late imperial times, perhaps 5% of the population was fully classically literate, yet the theoretically meritocratic civil service examination system and vibrant market in print materials of all degrees of complexity, among other factors, have fueled a scholarly consensus that many more men and women in Ming society were partially literate, in varying degrees. Scholars have been studying the vernacular literature and other texts for Ming and Qing people who had acquired what historian Benjamin Elman calls "primer literacy," but have had no systematic way to ascertain which texts they could read and how well they could understand them. The Primer Literacy Sieve is a computer program that removes (turns red and black) from any text a researcher inputs any word that does not appear in the primer(s) the researcher selects. Studying what remains gives a rough idea of what a primer-literate reader would have read in the text. This permits a closer approximation to audience reception of all kinds of late-imperial texts than has been possible before.
18 Apr 19:41

A Dairy Dutch Disease!

by tompepinsky

UPDATE: Dairy, not diary

At a fascinating conference on financial globalization sponsored by the Harriman Institute at Columbia, I learned lots of things. One thing was that New Zealand’s biggest trading partner is China (which is not surprising), and that its biggest export is dairy (which is also not surprising). But put these things together and we find that New Zealand has become a dairy-based commodity exporter, fueled in large part by the growth of Chinese demand for milk. Good, wholesome, actual milk, the stuff that New Zealand actually has quite a bit of, and the stuff that emerging economies start to demand as they become more developed. Here is what the data look like, courtesy of Statistics New Zealand.

The level of dependence is economically significant. When Chinese imports of New Zealand milk fall, New Zealand’s entire export balance suffers (see e.g. last February). According to my expert informant, it is also leading to Dutch disease-like effects.

Similar things are happening across the Tasman in Australia, but driven primarily by mineral exports. And as the Chinese economy plateaus or even begins to slow, it will be interesting to see how this plays out in those two countries. One thing I know from my visit to NZ with JMP (almost exactly one decade ago this week) is that agricultural interests matter, as this Rotorua political bus most colorfully revealed.

17 Apr 15:42

Countess Regis De Olivera (LOC)

by The Library of Congress

The Library of Congress posted a photo:

Countess Regis De Olivera (LOC)

Bain News Service,, publisher.

Countess Regis De Olivera

[between ca. 1915 and ca. 1920]

1 negative : glass ; 5 x 7 in. or smaller.

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards.
Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress).

Format: Glass negatives.

Rights Info: No known restrictions on publication.

Repository: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA,

General information about the Bain Collection is available at

Higher resolution image is available (Persistent URL):

Call Number: LC-B2- 4177-9

10 Apr 20:00

Bites: Millennium on for Rockridge, Vampire Penguin

by Kate Williams

“gourmet shaved ice”

The Halo-Halo. Photo: Vampire Penguin

Vampire Penguin, the soon-to-open “shaved ice” restaurant in Berkeley, will serve treats like the Halo-Halo, with flan, jackfruit, coconut, ube paste, mung beans and condensed milk over taro shaved snow. Photo: Vampire Penguin

Openings, closings…

VAMPIRE PENGUIN HAS THE GREEN LIGHT Berkeley will soon have its own shaved ice restaurant. We brought you news about Vampire Penguin, the popular Sacramento-based Taiwanese dessert restaurant, last fall. The restaurant now has its hands on a building permit, and manager Anthony Bai hopes to be open by mid-May. Vampire Penguin specializes in gourmet shaved ice — made primarily of fruit concentrate, sugar and non-dairy cream — with a variety of flavors and toppings like fruit, oats, taro, condensed milk, candies and other treats. It’s a potent combination; one Sacramento news outlet named the product, also known as “shaved snow,” the “best mouthgasam” in the city. Vampire Penguin will be at 2575 Telegraph Ave. (at Parker Street), Berkeley. Connect with the restaurant on Facebook.(...)

Read the rest of Bites: Millennium on for Rockridge, Vampire Penguin (1,097 words)

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Post tags: 21st Amendment, Alameda, Alameda dining, Albany, Albany dining, Berkeley, Bike East Bay, Bites: What’s new in East Bay food, Bourbon & Beef, Box and Bells, Drake's Brewing Company, Grange Hall, Jack London Square, Juice, Millennium Restaurant, Oakland, Oakland dining, Oakland drinks, Oakland Juice and Co, Ozumo, Rockridge, Sports Basement, Taste of the World, Teazzert, Vampire Penguin, Yo Sushi, Zachary's Pizza

14 Apr 05:03

Some online research

The reason for this is because I’ve done some online research and people have been given the right to freedom.

09 Apr 13:43

Can a University Classroom be “Safe”? Should We Want it to be?

by tompepinsky

I’m on sabbatical this year, which means that I haven’t done much classroom teaching in the past two semesters. Still, I have followed with some interest the public discussion about making colleges and universities “safe.” This is most clearly evident in the notion of a “trigger warning,” to be issued before any discussion of topics that might lead students to recall or relive past traumas. The recent NY Times piece on “safe spaces” at my alma mater brought a number of important issues to light.

I have never explicitly issued a trigger warning, even though my courses on Southeast Asia inevitably include some discussions of genocide, murder, rape, torture, and other forms of physical violence. Instead, I have always explicitly told students students that our class’s success depends on our collective behavior, such that we are all responsible—me no less than them—for creating an environment suitable for learning. I don’t say “safe,” I use words like “conducive” and “respectful” and “collaborative.” (More on that in a second.) I also begin each class in which we discuss violence or violence-like things with a sentence or two alerting students those topics will come up.

The reason why “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” have garnered so much attention in the media is of course because many people find the whole idea to be inappropriate. For some, it’s just tiresome; for others, it’s actually counterproductive. My guess is that much of this discussion takes the form of center-left radical-bashing: those who sympathize with progressive causes arguing that safe spaces are radical identity politics run amok.

That is why I was particularly interested to read this interview with Katherine McKittrick, who presents a radical critique of the entire idea that the classroom can be safe, or even more penetratingly, that we should want a classroom to be safe.

Privileged students leave these safe spaces with transparently knowable op­pressed identities safely tucked in their back pockets and a lesson on how to be aggressively and benevolently silent….This kind of privileged person sees the classroom as, a priori, safe, and a space that is tainted by dangerous subject matters (race) and unruly (intolerant) students…All of this, too, also recalls the long history of silencing—subalterns not speaking and all of that. Why is silencing, now, something that protects or enables safety? Who does silence protect and who does silence make safe and who does silence erase? Who has the privilege to demand tolerance?

This accords well with my views on classrooms as safe spaces. It has always seemed, to me, very important that we confront difficult topics that make us uncomfortable. That we gaze upon images like this (from my counterinsurgency-in-Vietnam lecture), ask unsafe questions, and think uncomfortable thoughts.

The whole discussion of classrooms as safe spaces by McKittrick is well worth a read. It also has some rather uncomfortable implications, leading me to wonder if I’m doing the right thing by invoking “collaborative” and “respectful” as essential to the classroom.

10 Apr 14:45

Harvard University drill squad (LOC)

by The Library of Congress

The Library of Congress posted a photo:

Harvard University drill squad (LOC)

Bain News Service,, publisher.

Harvard University drill squad

[between ca. 1915 and ca. 1920]

1 negative : glass ; 5 x 7 in. or smaller.

Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative.
Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress).

Format: Glass negatives.

Rights Info: No known restrictions on publication.

Repository: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA,

General information about the Bain Collection is available at

Higher resolution image is available (Persistent URL):

Call Number: LC-B2- 4172-5

10 Apr 14:45

Harvard, Military motor cycle squad (LOC)

by The Library of Congress

The Library of Congress posted a photo:

Harvard, Military motor cycle squad (LOC)

Bain News Service,, publisher.

Harvard, Military motor cycle squad

[between ca. 1915 and ca. 1920]

1 negative : glass ; 5 x 7 in. or smaller.

Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative.
Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress).

Format: Glass negatives.

Rights Info: No known restrictions on publication.

Repository: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA,

General information about the Bain Collection is available at

Higher resolution image is available (Persistent URL):

Call Number: LC-B2- 4172-7

09 Apr 14:09

Pepper-spraying drones will be used on Indian protesters


Reality is becoming a Philip K. Dick novel. Or maybe we have always been living in a Philip K. Dick novel and we just didn’t know it?

Indian police will start using pepper-spraying drones to control unruly crowds of protesters. Officials described the drones as a "non-lethal but very effective" method of "mob control."

According to AFP, police in the north Indian city of Lucknow, which has a population of two million, have already successfully trialed the aircraft and given them the thumbs-up.

The results of the tests were "brilliant" according to Lucknow police chief Yashasvi Yadav. "We have managed to work out how to use it to precisely target the mob in winds and congested areas. Pepper is non-lethal but very effective in mob control. We can spray from different heights to have maximum results.”

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

08 Apr 17:33

Ikea to begin offering vegetarian meatballs

by Sarah Fritsche

If they are vegetarian, they aren’t meatballs. They are just balls.

 (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

(AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

While best known for its Scandinavian-inspired assemble-it-yourself wares, for some, a visit to one of global mega-chain Ikea‘s outposts would be incomplete without a cafe stop for plate of Swedish meatballs (a.k.a KÖTTBULLAR). Now, vegetarians will have a ball option, too.

Photo: MARK COSTANTINI/The Chronicle 2003

Photo: MARK COSTANTINI/The Chronicle 2003

Ikea announced today that starting April 9, it will begin offering vegetarian meatballs in addition to the original meat version. The vegetarian option, known as GRÖNSAKSBULLAR, are made with “tasty chunks of vegetables and a good protein level to support a main meal.”

Those “tasty chunks of vegetables” will be comprised of green peas, corn, carrots and of course, kale.

This new menu addition is serving as the centerpiece of the company’s proclaimed movement toward serving their customers healthier food options. And the veggie meatballs will reportedly have a carbon footprint that is 1/30 of the meatballs, of which they sold a billion last year alone.

If you want to get a taste, the GRÖNSAKSBULLAR will be available in all of Ikea’s U.S. restaurants, except the one in Carson, California. They will sell for $4.49 for a 10 meatball plate.

Previous Ikea food news: 

  • Eye-Openers: Pork has been found in Ikea’s moose lasagna [Inside Scoop]
  • Nightcaps: The good news is that Ikea is making beer, too [Inside Scoop]
08 Apr 00:28

Why We Need Cameras

by Josh Marshall

A white police officer has been charged with murder after video emerged showing him shooting a black motorists as he ran away. The video is shocking.

The camera was not a dash or body cam. It appears to have been shot by a bystander. But in almost every case cameras are the friend or whoever is telling the truth. And just as important, they shape behavior, probably actually preventing some tragedies from happening in the first place.

07 Apr 15:47

His Holiness Gyalwang Karmapa Visits TBRC

by Emma Lewis

On Thursday, March 26, the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center had the great honor of hosting His Holiness Gyalwang Karmapa in our office for lunch. This was certainly one of the most exhilarating days in all of TBRC’s exciting history.

His Holiness the Karmapa at the TBRC office.

His Holiness the Karmapa at the TBRC office.

The leader of the 900-year-old Karma Kagyu lineage, His Holiness the Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje is beloved by millions of people the world over. He is known as an advocate, an innovator, and a luminary in the Buddhist world and beyond. The Karmapa has passionately expressed his commitment to environmentalism, as well as his mission to restore the full ordination of nuns in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. We were thrilled to have the opportunity to talk with his Holiness about TBRC’s mission to preserve and make accessible Tibetan texts.



The Karmapa blessing the TBRC office

During the visit, His Holiness blessed the TBRC offices and had a lively conversation with TBRC staff members over a vegetarian lunch. His Holiness took time to discuss his own interests in Tibetan textual preservation including his project, Adarsha, with TBRC staff and Board members, among other topics. Surrounded by precious volumes of the Kangyur and Tengyur in the TBRC library, all enjoyed a relaxed atmosphere.

After lunch, TBRC staff presented to His Holiness the many facets of TBRC’s work, mission, and future directions. Currently the largest digital Tibetan library in the world, TBRC holds over ten million pages of scanned text, all of which are now backed up in Harvard Library’s long-term preservation service. TBRC seeks out texts and makes them available online in the form of scanned page images for download, a detailed bibliographic search service, but also as eTexts, which are catalogued and organized into a searchable digital library. During the staff talks, His Holiness mentioned that he searches for texts in the TBRC library with great frequency, and that he hopes to encourage others to do the same.

Following the presentations, TBRC staff offered the Karmapa a very rare text, authored by the 8th Gyalwang Karmapa: “The Treatise on Kriya Tantra and Yoga Tantra.” TBRC founder Gene Smith had intended to present His Holiness with this manuscript when they met in 2008, but could not locate the text at that time. TBRC staff were delighted to locate the text and offer to his His Holiness on behalf of Gene Smith, fulfilling Smith’s wishes posthumously.


The 17th Karmapa receiving a rare text from the TBRC archives


In response to the offering, His Holiness kindly gave a brief teaching to the TBRC staff and Board members in attendance. Calling TBRC founder Gene Smith, “a lord amongst scholars of Tibetan Buddhism,” His Holiness stated:

“Gene’s accomplishments for the preservation and propagation of the literature of our tradition are inestimable… his passing was a terrible loss for our tradition and for all of us, but, because you are continuing his work and enacting his vision, that loss is not total. I thank you for doing this, and I urge you, please, to continue.

TBRC is the most important organization that exists in the world for the preservation of the literature of dharma and Tibetan culture. I use the TBRC website all the time, because in traveling as I do I can’t carry a huge number of books with me everywhere. As soon as I get access to the internet, I simply download from your site whatever I need. So it’s made a huge difference in my life and for our tradition.

As for the future, like you, I share the vision and intention of digitizing all of the literature of Tibetan Buddhism and all secular Tibetan literature. So let’s work together, let’s help each other, let’s share all the information we have, and continue in this task, so that together, we can get it done.”


His Holiness speaks to TBRC staff and Board members in the library: “I share the vision and intention of digitizing all of the literature of Tibetan Buddhism and all secular Tibetan literature.”

Following the teaching, His Holiness presented TBRC with a beautiful Shakyamuni Buddha thangka, which now hangs prominently in the TBRC office.



The Karmapa signing this Buddha thangka, His gift to TBRC


As a closing act of generosity and kindness, the Karmapa wrote the following calligraphic inscription for TBRC:

The Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center, which I deeply admire, has rendered incomparable service to the spiritual and secular traditions of Tibet.


The 17th Karmapa producing a calligraphy in the TBRC office

The 17th Karmapa gracefully and powerfully links the wisdom of his ancient lineage with the concerns of a rapidly shifting modern world. Likewise, TBRC stands at the intersection of the ancient and the modern, using digital technology to make the wisdom of Tibetan text available to all online. We could not be more pleased to have the allegiance of His Holiness the 17th Karmapa as we move forward with our shared mission to preserve and make accessible all Tibetan text in existence.


His Holiness poses for a photo with TBRC staff and Board members.

07 Apr 20:38

Beware of pro-ISIS script kiddies exploiting WordPress sites, FBI warns

by Dan Goodin

The FBI is advising people responsible for WordPress websites to be on the lookout for attacks carried out by individuals sympathetic to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams terrorist group, which is also known as the Islamic State in the Levant. The mostly unskilled attackers are exploiting known vulnerabilities that have already been patched by developers of the widely used content management system and widely used plugins—but individual Web masters have failed to install them.

"Successful exploitation of the vulnerabilities could result in an attacker gaining unauthorized access, bypassing security restrictions, injecting scripts, and stealing cookies from computer systems or network servers," a public service announcement the FBI published Tuesday warned. "An attacker could install malicious software; manipulate data; or create new accounts with full user privileges for future Web site exploitation."

The steady stream of vulnerabilities found in WordPress plugins, and to a lesser extent WordPress itself, make defacements and other types of website compromises largely a cut-and-paste exercise. Earlier Tuesday one such vulnerability came to light in a WordPress plugin with one million active installations. Relatively unskilled miscreants are seizing on sites that fall behind applying patches. The PSA went on to say:

Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments

07 Apr 18:12

World’s Okayest Feminist


Masterful use of the concessive. This little one will rule the land of Reddit one day.

One phrase that I really like is “Behind every man, is a woman.” Although this phrase was probably created by feminists, it still shows that woman can also do great things.

06 Apr 22:55

Bitcoin Foundation is “effectively bankrupt,” board member says

by Cyrus Farivar

One of the newly elected board members of the Bitcoin Foundation—the 2.5-year-old organization that was meant to bring order to the famously open source and freewheeling cryptocurrency—has declared the group "effectively bankrupt."

While the Bitcoin Foundation obviously does not have control over Bitcoin itself, it’s the closest thing to a public face that the community has. Individual memberships start at $25, while corporate memberships start at $1,000 annually. The non-profit’s own tax filings from 2013 show that it ended that year with over $4.7 million in total assets—nearly five times as much as it had at the same time the previous year. It has yet to release financial details for 2014.

The organization was founded in 2012 by a number of Bitcoin luminaries who have since fallen, and the group itself has been marred by controversy in recent months. Of its original five founders, one is now in prison (Charlie Shrem), another oversaw the collapse of the largest Bitcoin exchange (Mark Karpeles), and yet another has since left the United States for a Caribbean nation known for offshore banking (Roger Ver). Of the original board members, only Bitcoin lead developer Gavin Andresen has remained.

Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

01 Apr 01:30

Amazon wants you to place product buttons around your home

by Tiffany Kelly


Remember writing grocery lists and sticking them to your fridge? Amazon thinks you should now leave the task of restocking food and household supplies to a button.

The company announced a new device on Tuesday called the Dash Button, which connects to your smartphone using a Wi-Fi network. With one touch, the button will automatically reorder a product. There are buttons for a variety of products that Amazon sells, from Bounty paper towels to Glad trash bags to Larabar energy bars. The device is only available to Prime members.

Amazon’s video on the Dash Button (see above) shows that each button is emblazoned with the brand’s logo. (How’s that for brand loyalty?) The buttons are hangable and stickable, and it seems like the idea is to place the device in an area where you normally stock the product, like a cabinet. Then, you can press the button when you’re running low on a product.

Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments

27 Mar 18:50

Ford’s new car automatically slows down when it sees a speed limit sign

by Sebastian Anthony

Oh man imagine deploying this on the Mass Pike.

Ford has announced that the new S-Max, which goes on sale in Europe in August, will have a new feature that automatically slows you down so that you're traveling within the speed limit.

Called the Intelligent Speed Limiter, the new feature is a combination of two nascent automotive technologies: adjustable speed limiters and traffic sign recognition. An adjustable speed limiter might sound like cruise control, but it's slightly different: cruise control keeps your speed constant, while an adjustable speed limiter stops the throttle from delivering more fuel to the engine once you reach the desired speed.

Traffic sign recognition is exactly what it sounds like: using a forward-facing camera, usually behind the rearview mirror, an on-board computer scans the environment for signs that might be important. Over the last few years, there have been a number of cars that automatically recognize signs and flash up alerts on a digital dashboard display.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

03 Apr 17:38

Should Mom-and-Pops That Forgo Gay Weddings Be Destroyed? — The Atlantic

by overbey
A relatively big digital mob has been attacking this powerless family in rural Indiana,** but I don't get the sense that its participants have reflected on or even thought of these questions. I don't think they recognize how ugly, intolerant and extreme their actions appear or the effect they'll have on Americans beyond the mainstream media, or that their vitriolic shaming these people has ultimately made them into martyrs. I fear that a backlash against their tactics will weaken support for the better angels of the gay rights movement at a time when more progress needs to be made, and that they're turning traditionalists into a fearful, alienated minority with a posture of defensiveness that closes them off to persuasion.
03 Apr 00:36

History of the gym

by thuudung


For men in ancient Greece, the gymnasium was a place to pursue physical and intellectual excellence. Also sex. Homosexuality shaped gym culturemore»

02 Apr 02:34

Why Law Professor Douglas Laycock Supports Same-Sex Marriage and Indiana’s Religious Freedom Law | Religion & Politics

by overbey

A really interesting interview. I think his central argument is the most problematic: “no one has ever won a RFRA exemption from a nondiscrimination law”—the anti-RFRA people are going to argue that the whole point of the pro-RFRA movement today is to _change_ this fact.

All that a state RFRA can protect against is state law. So in Indianapolis, Bloomington, and South Bend, where there are sexual-orientation nondiscrimination laws, a state RFRA could be offered as a defense. But as I said at the beginning, judges have always thought that nondiscrimination laws serve compelling government interests, and no one has ever won a RFRA exemption from a nondiscrimination law. Such a thing may never happen, and if it ever does, it will be in very narrow contexts.
02 Apr 08:18

The Diamond Sutra on display: Text panel 6 with colophon

by Vic Swift

The whole text of the earliest dated printed book — the Diamond Sutra — will be on display at the British Library for the first time over a period of eighteen months between March 2014 – July 2015.

Following extensive conservation, the Diamond Sutra scroll currently remains in separate panels giving the unique opportunity to show all the panels in turn (see timetable below). Each panel will be on display for two months in the Treasures Gallery at the British Library, open to all and with free admission.

The sixth text panel of the Diamond Sutra on display (April–May 2015) contains the text from the second half of section 26 to the end of the Diamond Sutra. It also includes the dated colophon.

See the whole of the Diamond Sutra online on the IDP website.

The following English translation of the sixth text panel (by Lapiz Lazuli Texts) is based on Kumārajīva's Chinese translation of the original Sanskrit:

26. The Dharmakāya is without appearance (cont.)

Subhūti addressed the Buddha, saying, “Bhagavān, thus do I explain the meaning of what the Buddha has said. One should not observe the Tathāgata by means of the Thirty-two Marks.” At that time, the Bhagavān spoke a gāthā, saying:

If one perceives me in forms,
If one listens for me in sounds,
This person practices a deviant path
And cannot see the Tathāgata.

27. No severing, no annihilation

“Subhūti, suppose you think, ‘The Tathāgata has not, from the perfection of characteristics, attained Anuttarā Samyaksaṃbodhi.’ Subhūti, do not compose the thought, ‘The Tathāgata has not, from the perfection of characteristics, attained Anuttarā Samyaksaṃbodhi.’ Subhūti, composing this thought, the one who is developing the mind of Anuttarā Samyaksaṃbodhi is then speaking of the severence and annihilation of dharmas. Do not compose this thought. Why? One who is developing the mind of Anuttarā Samyaksaṃbodhi does not speak of a characteristic of the severence and annihilation of dharmas.

28. Not receiving, not desiring

“Subhūti, suppose a bodhisattva, in the practice of giving, filled as many world realms with the Seven Precious Jewels, as there are grains of sand in the Ganges River. If there is a person with the awareness that all dharmas are without self, and accomplishes their complete endurance, then this is superior, and the merits attained by this bodhisattva surpass those of the previous bodhisattva. Subhūti, the reason for this is that bodhisattvas do not receive merit.” Subhūti addressed the Buddha, saying, “Bhagavān, why do you say that bodhisattvas do not receive merit?” “Subhūti, for bodhisattvas to make merit, they should not greedily wish to acquire it, and therefore it is said that there is no merit received.

29. Power and position destroyed in silence

“Subhūti, if someone says that the Tathāgata comes, goes, sits, or lies down, then this person does not understand the meaning of my teachings. Why? The Tathāgata is one who neither comes nor goes anywhere, and for this reason is called the Tathāgata.

30. The principle of the unity of appearances

“Subhūti, if a good man or good woman disintegrated three thousand great thousand-worlds into atoms, would these atoms be very many in number?” “They would be extremely many, Bhagavān. Why? If this multitude of atoms truly existed, then the Buddha would not speak of a multitude of atoms. Yet the Buddha does speak of a multitude of atoms, and therefore the multitude of atoms spoken of by the Buddha is not a multitude of atoms, and is thus called a multitude of atoms. Bhagavān, the three thousand great thousand-worlds that the Tathāgata speaks of are not worlds, and are thus called worlds. Why? The existence of these worlds is like a single unified appearance. Why? The unified appearance that the Tathāgata speaks of is not a unified appearance, and is thus called the unified appearance.” “Subhūti, one who is of the unified characteristic is unable to speak it, and yet ordinary people greedily wish to acquire it.

31. Unborn knowing and perceiving

“Subhūti, suppose a person says, ‘The Buddha teaches views of a self, a person, a being, and a life.’ Subhūti, what do you think? Does this person understand the meaning of my teachings?” “No, Bhagavān, this person does not understand the meaning of the Tathāgata’s teachings. Why? The views of a self, a person, a being, and a life, that the Bhagavān speaks of, are not views of a self, a person, a being, or a life, and are thus called the views of a self, a person, a being, and a life.” “Subhūti, regarding all dharmas, one who is developing the mind of Anuttarā Samyaksaṃbodhi should thusly know, thusly see, and thusly believe, not giving rise to notions of dharmas. Subhūti, the true characteristic of dharmas is not a characteristic of dharmas, and is thus called the characteristic of dharmas.

32. Transforming the unreal

“Subhūti, suppose someone filled immeasurable, innumerable worlds with the Seven Precious Jewels, and then gave these away in the practice of giving. If a good man or good woman develops the mind of a bodhisattva and maintains this sūtra, even with as little as a four-line gāthā, and accepts, maintains, studies, recites, and explains it to others, then the merits of this surpass the others. How should one explain it? Without grasping at characteristics, in unmoving suchness. For what reason?

All conditioned dharmas
Are like dreams, illusions, bubbles, or shadows;
Like drops of dew, or like flashes of lightning;
Thusly should they be contemplated.

After the Buddha had spoken this sūtra, then Elder Subhūti along with all the bhikṣus, bhikṣuṇīs, upāsakas, upāsikās, and the devas, humans, and asuras from every world, heard what the Buddha had said. With great bliss, they believed, accepted, and reverently practiced in accordance.

Appendix: Mantra for the Vajracchedikā Prajñāpāramitā

namo bhagavatīprajñāpāramitāyaioṃ īriti īṣiri śruta viṣaya viṣaya svāhā


Reverently made for universal free distribution by Wang Jie on behalf of his two parents on the 15th of the 4th moon of the 9th year of Xiantong.' [11 May 868]>

‘The Diamond Sutra and Early Printing’

MARCH 2014 – JULY 2015

Monday 09.30 - 20.00
Tuesday 09.30 - 20.00
Wednesday 09.30 - 20.00
Thursday 09.30 - 20.00
Friday 09.30 - 18.00
Saturday 09.30 - 17.00
Sunday 11.00 - 17.00
Public holidays 11.00 - 17.00

Sir John Ritblat Gallery
The British Library
96 Euston Road
London, NW1 2DB

April – May 2015

6th panel printed text, including colophon

June – July 2015

01 Apr 22:07

History collapsed


When student writing is so bad it becomes art

Nuclear disarmament happened after Bay of Pigs, which was during the Vietnam War, so it happened in the ’90s.  You have to understand the ’90s were a really long time ago.

01 Apr 19:30

New Firefox version says “might as well” to encrypting all Web traffic

by Dan Goodin


Developers of the Firefox browser have moved one step closer to an Internet that encrypts all the world's traffic with a new feature that can cryptographically protect connections even when servers don't support the HTTPS protocol.

Opportunistic encryption, as the feature is known, acts as a bridge between plaintext HTTP connections and fully compliant HTTPS connections based on transport layer security or its predecessor, protocol secure sockets layer. These traditional Web-based encryption measures require site operators to obtain a digital credential issued by a browser-recognized certificate authority and to implement TLS protection through OpenSSL or a similar code library. Even then, many sites are unable to fully encrypt their pages because they embed ads and other third-party content that's still transmitted in plaintext. As a result, large numbers of sites (including this one) continue to publish some or all of their content in HTTP, which can be readily manipulated by people with the ability to monitor the connection.

OE, as opportunistic encryption is often abbreviated, was turned on by default in Firefox 37, which was released this week. The move comes 17 months after an Internet Engineering Task Force working group proposed OE become an official part of the HTTP 2.0 specification. The move garnered critics and supporters alike, with the former arguing it may delay some sites from using the more secure HTTPS protections and the latter saying, in effect, some protection is better than none. The chief shortcoming of OE is its lack of authentication for cryptographically validating that a connected server is operated by the organization claiming ownership.

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01 Apr 19:33

Case dismissed against 2 homeless men after review of Berkeley beating video

by Emilie Raguso
Downtown Berkeley ambassador assault. Image: Bryan Hamilton

Image: Bryan Hamilton

The Alameda County district attorney’s office has dismissed the case against two men who pleaded guilty to battery charges last week. The decision came after authorities reviewed a video that showed an interaction, between the men and two Downtown Berkeley Association workers, that began as a verbal altercation and took a violent turn.

In the video — which has been viewed on YouTube more than 60,000 times — a worker for the merchants association can be seen punching one of those men at least 10 times, pushing him to the ground. When the worker, identified in court papers as Jeffrey Bailey, initially told authorities about the March 19 incident, prior to the discovery of the video, he said he had just been defending himself.

Read more about homelessness in Berkeley, and past coverage of the story.

Police arrested James Cocklereese, 30, and Nathan Swor, 23, based on Bailey’s report, and the district attorney’s office filed seven misdemeanor charges against the pair. Last week, police said they learned of the video — which was posted online by Bryan Hamilton on Sunday, March 22 — and alerted the district attorney’s office to it. But the two homeless men had already pleaded guilty to battery and been sentenced to probation.(...)

Read the rest of Case dismissed against 2 homeless men after review of Berkeley beating video (321 words)

By emilie. | Permalink | 66 comments |
Post tags: Alameda County district attorney's office, Berkeley homelessness, Block by Block, Bryan Hamilton, Carmen Francios, Downtown Berkeley, Downtown Berkeley Ambassadors, Downtown Berkeley Association, James Wilbur Cocklereese, Jeff D. Bailey, John Caner

01 Apr 18:39

Pinboard on Twitter: "For April Fool’s I like to remind everyone that the coding effort expended on Google pranks would have kept Google Reader alive indefinitely"

by overbey

Pinboard guy is devastating.

31 Mar 23:08

White God - Movie Trailers - iTunes

by overbey

ATTN: saucie

01 Apr 04:10

Amazon Dash Button

by John Gruber

Feels like Amazon meets Philip K. Dick: free little logo-branded dinguses Amazon will give you to stick around your house, and click when you need to re-order more of whatever it’s for. A Bounty paper towel button in your kitchen, a Tide detergent button in your laundry room, Gatorade and Izze soda buttons on your fridge — you get the idea. I’m not sure whether this is genius, or the stupidest thing Amazon has tried yet.

Update: A bunch of people are convinced this is a prank for Internet Jackass Day, but Amazon confirmed to The New York Times that it’s a real product.

31 Mar 21:00

Camel milk and kava: 2 new Berkeley spots mix it up

by Bay Area Bites

Berkeley, land of Ideological Food and Beverage

Interior of Mission Heirloom. Photo: Shelby Pope

Interior of Mission Heirloom. Photo: Shelby Pope

By Shelby Pope/Bay Area Bites

There is no shortage of non-alcoholic drinks in Berkeley. The first, second and third waves of coffee are all sufficiently represented. There are many spots for tea of every variety, including bubble.There’s even more than one place to get an avocado smoothie.

But two new Berkeley cafes have found something new to offer. In the Gourmet Ghetto, the Bay Area’s first dedicated grain-free restaurant, Mission: Heirloom, serves coffee with everything from camel’s milk to butter. Down on University, MeloMelo Kava Bar is introducing customers to drinks made with kava.

The two cafés are very similar. Both are beautiful spaces, filled with little details like Mission Heirloom’s elegant Heath Ceramic dishes and MeloMelo’s lighting system, which changes colors if they’re mentioned on Twitter or Instagram. Both inspire evangelical devotion among their respective fans. And both are expensive, with drinks hovering around the $6-7 range. Your impression of them will likely depend on your tolerance for both acquired tastes and alternative health.(...)

Read the rest of Camel milk and kava: 2 new Berkeley spots mix it up (1,441 words)

By Bay Area Bites. | Permalink | 5 comments |
Post tags: Berkeley dining, Gourmet Ghetto, MeloMelo Kava Bar, Mission Heirloom, North Berkeley, Paleo Diet, Shattuck Avenue, University Avenue

31 Mar 20:48

Verizon Wireless Lets Customers Opt Out of Tracking 'Perma-Cookies'

by Juli Clover
Last year, Verizon and AT&T made headlines when researchers discovered they had been engaging in some unsavory customer tracking techniques, using unique identifier numbers or "perma-cookies" to track the websites that customers visited on their cellular devices to deliver targeted advertisements, a practice called "Relevant Advertising."

Following customer backlash, AT&T stopped using the hidden web tracking codes to keep tabs on the websites that its customers visited, but Verizon continued on with its Relevant Advertising program, which it's been using for approximately two years. While there was an option to opt out of Verizon's program, opting out did not stop the intrusive code from being inserted into the URLs of Verizon customers, leaving a security hole that could let advertisers exploit Verizon customers.

As of today, The New York Times reports that Verizon has given its customers a true opt out option that does not insert the identifying tracking codes (or UIDH) into the URLs of customers who opt not to be tracked, as it promised to do in January.
In a statement, Debra Lewis, a Verizon spokeswoman, said privacy is a "central consideration" for the company when it develops new products and services.

"As the mobile advertising ecosystem evolves, and our advertising business grows, delivering solutions with best-in-class privacy protections remains our focus," Ms. Lewis said. "As a reminder, we never share information with third parties that identifies our customers as part of our advertising programs.
Verizon customers can opt out of the Relevant Advertising program by logging into their My Verizon accounts and selecting "Manage Privacy Settings" from the "Manage My Account" section of their user profile. AT&T and Verizon customers are able to check whether their devices are sending identifying codes by visiting a website created by Kenneth White, one of the security researchers who originally discovered the tracking methods. Verizon's tracking programs are automatic opt-in, so many users may need to navigate to the aforementioned page to turn off the tracking.

30 Mar 20:30

Internal Memo: Zappos is offering severance to employees who aren’t all in with Holacracy - Quartz

by overbey

Read the whole email. It is batshit insane, full of the latest MBA theory, and just a wonder to behold.

“The people management aspects of the manager role are valuable in what the book refers to as Orange and Green organizations, but do not make sense in a self-organized and self-managing Teal organization. While we know that the full role of managers will no longer be necessary in a Teal organization, we’re also looking forward to seeing what new exciting contributions will come from the employees who were previously managers. All former managers who remain in good standing will still keep their salary through the end of 2015 even though their day-to-day work that formerly involved more traditional management will need to change. A new circle called Reinventing Yourself has been created to help guide former managers to new roles that might be a good match for their passions, skills, and experience.”