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Daily Archives: May 19, 2014

NPR launches searchable database of over 300 memorable commencement speeches

NPR – “Something funny has happened to the familiar commencement address in the past 10 years. That something is YouTube. Steve Jobs’ 2005 address at Stanford, to take just one example, has been viewed upwards of 20 million times. We are now in a golden age of the commencement speech as a hilarious, inspiring form of popular art. And to pay our respects to graduations past and present, NPR Ed and the NPR Visuals team have built a searchable, shareable database of over 300 commencement speeches dating back to 1774. Since the colonial era, young graduates in stiff gowns and itchy mortarboards have been forced to sit through this one last lecture. On rare occasions, politicians have used commencements to say important things, like John F. Kennedy announcing a nuclear test ban. Other lucky graduates have been treated to profound musings by literary geniuses like Joseph Brodsky and Kurt Vonnegut, or calls to action by activists like Gloria Steinem.”

World Health Statistics 2014

“World Health Statistics 2014 contains WHO’s annual compilation of health-related data for its 194 Member States, and includes a summary of the progress made towards achieving the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and associated targets. This year, it also includes highlight summaries on the ongoing commitment to end preventable maternal deaths; on the need to act… Continue Reading

Bank Size and Systemic Risk – IMF

Laeven, Luc and Ratnovski, Lev and Tong, Hui, Bank Size and Systemic Risk (May 15, 2014). Available at SSRN: “Large banks are riskier, and create more systemic risk, when they have lower capital and less-stable funding. Large banks create more systemic risk (but are not individually riskier) when they engage more in market-based activities or… Continue Reading

New report – student debt rising faster at state universities with the highest-paid presidents

Institute for Policy Studies – “State universities have come under increasing criticism for excessive executive pay, soaring student debt, and low-wage faculty labor. In the public debate, these issues are often treated separately. Our study examines what happened to student debt and faculty labor at the 25 public universities with the highest executive pay (hereafter… Continue Reading

Report – NSA Is Recording Every Cell Phone Call in the Bahamas

By Ryan Devereaux, Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras: The National Security Agency is secretly intercepting, recording, and archiving the audio of virtually every cell phone conversation on the island nation of the Bahamas. According to documents provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, the surveillance is part of a top-secret system – code-named SOMALGET – that was implemented without the knowledge or consent of… Continue Reading

32 years ago, experts foresaw much of today’s digital world

“In a new Pew Research Center report by Drew DeSilver, nearly 1,600 technology experts give their thoughts about how the “Internet of Things” — wearable computers, processor-embedded products and other digital advances — will alter society over the next decade. Many (though not all) of the experts foresee, in the words of the report, “a global, immersive,… Continue Reading

World Bank – Global Consumption Database

“IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today launched the world’s most comprehensive database on consumer spending patterns in developing countries—a tool to help private sector companies identify business opportunities that can benefit low-income people in developing countries. The Global Consumption Database, launched in cooperation with the World Bank, is based on government surveys of more… Continue Reading

New GAO Reports – U.S. Arctic Council Participation, DOD Common Contractor Manpower Data System

Better Direction and Management of Voluntary Recommendations Could Enhance U.S. Arctic Council Participation, GAO-14-435: Published: May 16, 2014. Publicly Released: May 19, 2014: “Six key federal agencies hold leadership roles in the Arctic Council and other agencies participate through the Council’s working groups and task forces. The U.S. Department of State (State) leads this participation and collaborates… Continue Reading

Metropolitan Museum Initiative Provides Free Access to 400,000 Digital Images

“Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, announced today that more than 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain works in the Museum’s world-renowned collection may be downloaded directly from the Museum’s website for non-commercial use—including in scholarly publications in any media—without permission from the Museum and without a fee.… Continue Reading

McKinsey – Strategic principles for competing in the digital age

Digitization is rewriting the rules of competition, with incumbent companies most at risk of being left behind. Here are six critical decisions CEOs must make to address the strategic challenge posed by the digital revolution. May 2014 | byMartin Hirt and Paul Willmott, “Staggering amounts of information are accessible as never before—from proprietary big data to new… Continue Reading