Topics for the Monday June 8

An interesting video from YouTube.

Font Men – SXSW 2014 Official Selection.

You may not have heard of Jonathan Hoefler or Tobias Frere-Jones but you’ve seen their work. Before their recent split, they collectively ran the most successful and well respected type design studio in the world, creating fonts used by everyone from the Wall Street Journal to the President of the United States.
Font Men, gives a peek behind the curtain into the world of Jonathan and Tobias. Tracking the history of their personal trajectories, sharing the forces that brought them together and giving an exclusive look at the successful empire they built together.

News from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

Vodafone reveals that governments are collecting personal data without limits.

‘A soup of misery’: Over half of people say they’d abandon their cable company, if only they could.

Companies can spend millions on security measures to keep executives safe.

D-day anniversary: emotional swansong for UK veterans of Normandy.

Alan Moore leading digital comics to open-source future.


Topics for the Monday June 2

An interesting video from YouTube.

How To Be Creative.

Creativity has always been essential for our cultural growth, but there are still many misconceptions about this elusive process. Not the left-brain/right-brain binary that we’ve come to believe, being creative is considerably more complex, and requires a nuanced understanding of ourself and others. Being a powerful creative person involves letting go of preconceived notions of what an artist is, and discovering and inventing new processes that yield great ideas. Most importantly, creators must push forward, whether the light bulb illuminates or not.

News from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

Want to remove your personal search results from Google? Here’s how the request form works.

What fueled the rise of the Euro-right.

Apple chief Tim Cook is under pressure to prove innovative flair is still there.

Benefits of statins outweigh risks, says medicines regulator.

Lecturers claim private college puts profits first.

French EuroMillions winner to give away €50m.


Topics for the Monday May 26

An interesting video from YouTube.

The Courtroom Sketch Artist.

Gary Myrick was once the go-to artist for television news station — millions regularly viewed his work on the networks.

Starting with the Dallas school desegregation trial in 1976, he sketched courtrooms that featured famous politicians, serial killers, professional athletes, international arms merchants, housewives-turned-killers, victims’ families, rapt juries and napping judges — all rendered with an empathetic gaze and understated wit. His work conveyed the tragedy and folly of the courtroom experience, while avoiding sentimentality and snap judgments about his subjects. His human touch captured what cameras never could.

News from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

Indictment of PLA hackers is part of broad U.S. strategy to curb Chinese cyberspying.

Five reasons a coup was staged in Thailand, again.

Thanks to budget cuts, we may never know for sure why the universe is expanding.

Internet giants wooed us, but the honeymoon is over.

Barclays fined £26m for gold fix failings.

The house prices-to-salaries map which shows why you may never get a mortgage.

Topics for the Monday May 19

An interesting video from YouTube.

The story behind the Image most viewed.

The one thing everybody will always remember of Windows XP is desktop image ‘Bliss’, with it’s green rolling hills and bluer than blue sky. Doesn’t the most viewed picture of all times asks for a worthy goodbye? We certainly think so! That’s why we hopped on a plane to Los Angeles and went to visit the photographer Charles O’Rear.

He told us the incredible story behind the famous desktop image.

News from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

Modi promises a ‘shining India’ in victory speech.

GM fined $35 million in ignition-switch safety case.

No reservations? This restaurant trend has become harder to swallow.

Are action movies bad for weak hearts?

Swarm of honeybees descends on central London Topshop.

The art of noise: how music recording has changed over the decades.

Bring women artists out of storage.

El Bulli: the ultimate dining experience.


Topics for the Monday April 28

The next Monday, April 21 won’t be reunion in the library, so the next meeting will be April 28.

First, a video from YouTube.

Rise of the Patent Troll.

Patents were intended to encourage invention by providing a short term period where no one can make money after your invention. In exchange, you revealed how the invention was made and when the patent expired, it became the property of everyone. Patents are a balancing act – one side benefit individuals, on the other the benefit the public. When the balance tips too far in either direction we get less invention.

This system has always had its problems because patents are powerful so there were many bitter disputes between competitors. But when a new kind of technology called software started to get patented things began to get strange.

Unlike many older inventions software isn’t a machine. Its functions are trickier to define and some patent holders have taken advantage of this and laid claim to broad features that should have never been patented. The combination of and old law and a new technology presented a lucrative opportunity to exploit the power patents and a new kind of corporation took advantage: the patent troll. Patent trolls are mysterious corporations that file law suits or demand licensing fees in order to profit from broad patents. They often go after small software developers who can afford expensive law suits, so the developer ends up paying a licensing fee just to avoid going to court.

Some news from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

Australia brings back knights and dames; critics call them a royal embarrassment.

A last-minute act of forgiveness in Iran.

Cuba’s condom shortage raises fears of imminent health crisis.

CIA torture architect breaks silence to defend ‘enhanced interrogation’.

Jimmy Choo boosts Japanese artisans with shoes made of Fukushima fabrics.

Topics for the Monday April 14

An interesting video from YouTube.

The History of the Movie Tráiler.

Some people consider them the best part of the movie going experience – the Movie Trailer. Take a look at the evolution of the “coming attractions” from simple silent film splices, through the template style of the Golden Age of Hollywood, through Auteurs and finally into the Blockbuster era.

News from The Washington Post and The Guardian.

U.S. rallied 120 nations in response to 2012 cyberattack on American Banks.

Social Security, Treasury target taxpayers for their parents’ decades-old debts.

Obamas made a half million dollars in 2013.

The Heartbleed situation just got a lot worse. It also affects routers.

Supermarket staff could win millions in equal pay cases.

Where do you draw the line when it comes to taking photos in public?

Pressure on primary school places adds to anxiety on offer day.


Topics for the Monday April 7

A video from YouTube to talk about.

Google and NASA’s Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab .

This short documentary helps to explain the complex concept of quantum computing. Made by Google and NASA they give insights how they plan to use the technology in the future.

In May 2013 Google partnered with NASA and announced the Quantum A.I. Lab, a place where researchers from around the world can experiment with the incredible powers and possibilities of quantum computing.

Economy added 192,000 jobs in March; unemployment rate steady at 6.7 percent.

Review: ‘A Broken Hallelujah: The Life of Leonard Cohen,’ by Liel Leibovitz.

Michael Schumacher shows ‘moments of awakening’ from coma.

Pollution levels forecast to drop in England and Wales.

You are not alone: student stories of mental health.

April 2014: six elections, one billion people, the world’s most democratic month.