The Intelligent Life of the City Raccoon

Suzanne Mac­Don­ald, a com­par­a­tive psy­chol­o­gist who stud­ies rac­coon behav­ior at York Uni­ver­sity in Toronto, has com­pared the problem-solving skills of rural and city rac­coons. The result? Urban­ites trump their coun­try cousins in both intel­li­gence and abil­ity. For the past few sum­mers, she video­taped rural and urban racoons toy­ing with con­tain­ers baited with cat food. While both rural and city racoons read­ily approached famil­iar con­tain­ers, they dealt dif­fer­ently with unfa­mil­iar ones.

After Some Victories, the Time Has Come to Legally Define ‘Fair Use’

The prob­lem: there is no let­ter of the law stan­dard that can be applied to fair use. Think your spe­cific sit­u­a­tion is fair use? Try it out, see if some­one sues you. Indi­vid­ual dis­putes are worked out through the courts; judges make deter­mi­na­tions on a case-by-case basis, using a four fac­tor approach. This makes peo­ple, par­tic­u­larly civil ser­vants and peo­ple who work for large insti­tu­tions with teams of savvy lawyers, under­stand­ably nervous.

The Mormon Church Is Building a Family Tree of the Entire Human Race

The LDS drove micro­film tech­nol­ogy in the twen­ti­eth cen­tury, and today it is a leader in dig­i­tal data stor­age. Its dig­i­tal cam­era oper­a­tors pho­to­graph records and get those images online within two days, and then an enor­mous army—that is to say, hun­dreds of thousands—of vol­un­teers index the files and make them search­able. The Mor­mons were crowd­sourc­ing long before the word was invented.

How to Lose 10 Pounds While Playing Dodge-the-Algorithm

I couldn’t type the words into that box.

I feared that “I want to lose 10 pounds” would be the magic words that con­jured up end­less streams of head­less women in biki­nis with mea­sur­ing tapes around their allegedly newly-skinny waist, who would fol­low me online till the sun went supernova.