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Daily Archives: December 15, 2013

The state of the UK’s birds 2013

“This is the 14th The state of the UK’s birds (SUKB) report. Published in 2013, it contains results from annual, periodic and one-off surveys and studies from as recently as 2012. It draws on many sources of information to give an up-to-date overview of the health of bird populations in the UK and its Overseas Territories. The UK wild bird indicator is an important, high-level measure of the state of biodiversity in the UK. It is also used to measure the country’s progress towards sustainable development goals. It shows broad trends in bird populations within four habitats along with an “all species” line. However, it should be remembered that within these lines there can be great variation in the trends of individual species, with some prospering while others are declining. The individual species trends that feed into the indicators can be found on pages 9–12 (for common breeding birds including those in the farmland, woodland and wetland indicators) and page 32 (for seabirds). The good news is that there has been a slight upturn in the woodland indicator, although it remains below its start value. However, the farmland bird indicator remains stalled at less than half its 1970 value, and the wetland and seabird indicators  have both shown recent declines.” [for M&M]

Paper – Firearms and suicides in US states

Firearms and suicides in US states, International Review of Law and Economics, Volume 37, March 2014, Pages 180–188. Justin Thomas Briggs and Alexander Tabarrok. Department of Economics, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. Empirical study of firearm possession and suicides at the state-level over 2000–2009. Firearms are found to be very strongly related to firearm suicides, as expected. Firearms are also… Continue Reading

Commentary – How the NSA Piggy-Backs on Third-Party Trackers

How the NSA Piggy-Backs on Third-Party Trackers by Edward Felten and Jonathan Mayer “Snooping on the Internet is tricky. The network is diffuse, global, and packed with potential targets. There’s no central system for identifying or locating individuals, so it’s hard to keep track of who is online and what they’re up to. What’s a spy agency to… Continue Reading

Forgot Your Password? books / prints 2013

Artist – Aram Bartholl: “In summer 2012 the social network got hacked and lost its whole user database. A few months later parts of the decrypted password list surfaced on the Internet. These eight volumes contain 4.7 million LinkedIn clear text user passwords printed in alphabetical order. Visitors are invited to look up their own password. 8… Continue Reading

Northern Virginia Dominates List of Highest-Income Counties, Census Bureau Reports

“The U.S. Census Bureau reports that five of the counties or county-equivalents nationwide with the highest median household income in 2012 were located in Northern Virginia. Among them were Arlington County, at $99,255, Fairfax County, at $106,690, Falls Church (an independent city), at $121,250, Loudoun County, at $118,934, and Stafford County, at $95,927. Falls Church and Loudoun… Continue Reading

New GAO Reports – Climate Change, DHS Employee Morale and Leadership, Audits of BFS and IRS

CLIMATE CHANGE – Federal Efforts Under Way to Assess Water Infrastructure Vulnerabilities and Address Adaptation Challenges, GAO-14-23, Nov 14, 2013 DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY – DHS’s Efforts to Improve Employee Morale and Fill Senior Leadership Vacancies, GAO-14-228T, Dec 12, 2013: “DHS is the third-largest cabinet-level department in the federal government, with more than 240,000 employees situated throughout the nation.… Continue Reading

Active Shooter Events 2000-2013 – ABC Action News

“The FBI defines ‘active shooter’ events as incidents where a gunman arrives on a scene intending to commit mass murder. They can include events that result in no fatalities. The data on this page represents the most complete compilation of events tracked by Texas State University’s Dr. Peter Blair that have been publicly released.  To… Continue Reading

New Report on Stem Cell Research Reveals the Field is Growing Twice as Fast as The World Average

“Elsevier, EuroStemCell, and Kyoto University’s Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences (iCeMS), released Stem Cell Research report: Trends and Perspectives on the Evolving International at the World Stem Cell Summit. This new, comprehensive analysis of the growth and development of the stem cell field as a whole, closely examines the research landscape for embryonic stem (ES) cell, human embryonic stem (hES) cell… Continue Reading

Performance of the UK research base: international comparison – 2013

“This report has been commissioned by the UK’s Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) to assess the performance of the United Kingdom’s (UK) research base compared with seven other research-intensive countries (Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the US), three fast growing nations (Brazil, India and Russia), and other international benchmarks. It tracks… Continue Reading

48 Years of Crime in Chicago

48 Years of Crime in Chicago – A Descriptive Analysis of Serious Crime Trends from 1965 to 2013. ISPS Working Paper, ISPS13-023  [December 9, 2013] . Andrew V. Papachristos, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Sociology, Public Health, and Law, Yale University. “Over the past two decades, the United States has experienced an  unpredicted drop in crime. Chicago, while often portrayed… Continue Reading