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  1. Last 7 days
    1. AI for Writers WorkshopCurious about the impact of artificial intelligence on writing and spirituality? Join our hands-on AI for Writers Workshop in the Community Room at Jordan Court, Sunday, March 10, 2024, 12:30-2:30 pm. Open to the spiritual autobiography writing group members, to the broader church and Jordan Court communities, this session dives into AI with a focus on Large Language Models like ChatGPT. And yes, we’ll define what a “Large Language Model” actually is!Bring your devices to explore AI tools practically, addressing topics from environmental concerns to data privacy. Tailored discussions and activities await, based on your pre-submitted questions and interests.More info? Contact Raymond Yee (raymond.yee@gmail.com) for details. Let's explore the creative and ethical dimensions of AI together.

      the workshop I'll be leading on "AI for writers"

  2. Jan 2024
    1. Albany Hill Eucalyptus Project (CIP No. 41015) In October of 2021, the City Council established a Capital Improvement Project to address increasing decline of eucalyptus forest on Albany Hill. The project is intended to responsibly mitigate wildfire and related hazards while also repairing and restoring native habitat for generations of wildlife to come. The project is currently in the planning phase as of October 2023.

      Albany Hill Eucalyptus Project

  3. Dec 2023
    1. Alongside one-on-one chats, WhatsApp also supports group chats and community chats (which are basically larger groups of group chats). As with chats, both group chats and community chats are end-to-end encrypted.

      EFF states that end-to-end encryption is applied in WhatsApp to group and community chats, in addition to one-on-one chats.

  4. Aug 2023
    1. town

      Why call Albany a "town" when it is a "city"?

    2. It isn’t that diverse economically, either; median household income is above $113,000 (nationally the figure is about $70,000).

      One knows very little about economic diversity from the median household income. Instead, you need to know the distribution of the income. Quoting the standard deviation/variance in the income would help with assessing economic diversity.

  5. Jun 2023
    1. Alameda County Library

      The source of fast internet to the Albany branch of the Alameda County Library.

  6. Jan 2023
    1. a. Irenaean “Soul-making” Theodicy

      this section summarizes John Hick's contribution to theodicy

  7. Dec 2022
    1. LLNL’s experiment surpassed the fusion threshold by delivering 2.05 megajoules (MJ) of energy to the target, resulting in 3.15 MJ of fusion energy output, demonstrating for the first time a most fundamental science basis for inertial fusion energy (IFE). Many advanced science and technology developments are still needed to achieve simple, affordable IFE to power homes and businesses, and DOE is currently restarting a broad-based, coordinated IFE program in the United States. Combined with private-sector investment, there is a lot of momentum to drive rapid progress toward fusion commercialization.

      This seems to be the key paragraph in the press release.

  8. May 2022
    1. From the Racial Justice Subcommittee

      Russell Jeung at All Souls 2022-05-22

  9. Apr 2022
    1. Negative COVD Test PCR / NAAT test 72 hours before boarding or Rapid Antigen / TRAg test 24 hours before boarding.

      specifics about COVID test required for entry to Portugal

  10. Jan 2022
    1. Alexander Rink has been doing performance benchmarks of different "tools for thought." The results for Obsidian "blew away the competition up to a factor of more than 100." Make sure to read the comments! There's an excellent discussion (featuring plugin dev extraordinaire @pjeby) about how to get Obsidian to be able to do all the "outliner" and "block" functionality. Pjeby is very knowledgeable about stuff that not everyone realizes is possible in Obsidian. This comment thread also gives a neat look "under the hood" of how hard Licat has worked to make Obsidian so performant.  Some of the key points have been migrated to the Obsidian forum for posterity.

      Pure gold -- thanks, Eleanor, for this pointer to a discussion about the fast eventually consistent database representation underneath of Obsidian.

    1. Self-isolation guidelines Vaccinated people and children under the age of 12 who are sick with COVID-19 will only be required to self-isolate for a minimum of five days following the date when their symptoms started, instead of 10. Their household contacts will also be required to isolate alongside them. If, after five days, their symptoms have improved for at least 24 hours they can end the isolation period.  Close contacts of people with COVID-19 who are fully vaccinated, asymptomatic and who don't live with the positive case, won't have to self-isolate at all. Instead, they're being advised to self-monitor for symptoms and to not visit any high-risk settings or vulnerable individuals for 10 days. Moore said this change is based on growing evidence that generally healthy people with COVID-19 are most infectious for the two days before and three days after symptoms develop. People who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated or immunocompromised will still be required to isolate for 10 days. Health-care workers with symptoms, including those who work in long-term care homes, must stay away from work for 10 days, although they can return after isolating for seven days if they test negative on a PCR test or two rapid tests, taken on day six and seven of their isolation period.

      Ontario isolation and quarantine guidance (Dec 30, 2021)

    1. Isolation for COVID-19 Positive Individuals All individuals with COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, should stay home for at least five days. Isolation can end after day five if symptoms are not present or resolving and if an antigen test collected on day five or later is negative.   Quarantine for Individuals Exposed to COVID-19 Unvaccinated individuals who are exposed to COVID-19, and vaccinated people who are eligible for a booster but have not yet received a booster who are exposed to COVID-19, should stay home for at least five days and also get an antigen test on day five. Vaccinated individuals who have received their booster, or are not eligible for a booster, and are exposed to COVID-19 do not have to stay home but should test on day five. 

      California guidance on isolation and quarantine for COVID-19 (Dec 30, 2021)

  11. Dec 2021
    1. If you're going for the educational market, beware. My career started in educational games and I can tell you from experience it's a brutal, toxic place. I could write an entire article on that alone so here's the highlights – 1) if you're working in academia proper you will be forever chasing committees and approvals and grants while juggling petty collegial politics and back-stabbing, 2) if you're working in the school system your game will be shoved through a standards compliance colonoscopy procedure with incredibly detailed and arbitrary learning goals and curricula, 3) the entire space is drenched in the principal-agent problem, 4) most people in education know nothing about game design but will insert themselves anyways, 5) most people in the games industry know nothing about pedagogy but will insert themselves anyways, and 6) your product had better run on whatever ancient, low-spec, locked-down computing hardware the institutions happen to have on hand. Companies in the educational games industry are often mistaken for lightweights by the "regular" games industry, but they're actually extremophile species specifically adapted to navigating this strange world.

      accurate? fair?

  12. Aug 2021
    1. In August 2020, Abbott received EUA from the FDA for its $5, 15-minute, portable COVID-19 antigen test, BinaxNOW, which is compatible with Abbott's complementary mobile app named NAVICA.[54] The size of a credit card, the test has been called a potential game-changer because of its speed, massive scale, low cost and compatible app, giving tens of millions of people access to rapid testing.[55] In October 2020, Abbott received EUA from the FDA for its lab-based COVID-19 IgM antibody blood test.[56] In December 2020, Abbott's rapid antigen BinaxNOW COVID-19 test received EUA from the FDA for use at home with a prescription through a virtually guided online service. The first at-home, virtually guided rapid test, can provide results in 20 minutes.[57] Forbes reported that Abbott delivered more than 400 million COVID-19 tests since the pandemic began in early 2020 and 300 million in the fourth quarter of 2020 alone. The article also reported that the COVID-19 tests produced by Abbott have been key for detecting the complex virus and getting patients treatment if they need it.[58] Additionally, a Wall Street Journal editorial reported, “More and faster testing such as the low-cost rapid antigen test by Abbott Laboratories that the Food and Drug Administration approved last week will allow more schools and workplaces to reopen.”[59]

      Description of BinaxNOW rapid antigen test

  13. Jun 2021
    1. A study accepted for publication in May 2021 postulates that the centre of Sgr A* may actually be a consolidation of dark matter rather than a black hole, as is currently held. This was derived from the observation of S2 and G2 objects' orbits.[

      Noting that there is a published article arguing that it's dark matter an not a black hole in the center of the Milky Way.

    1. Summer Book Group for Adults Please join us for summer book group at All Souls!  Starting in June, we will be discussing The Sum of Us by Heather McGhee.  You may attend in person or by Zoom.  The reading and discussion session is:  June 13 (Intro through Chapter 3, p. 65), June 20 (Chapter 4 through Chapter 6, p. 165), June 27 (Chapter 7 through Chapter 8, p. 219), and July 11 (Chapter 9 through 10, p. 288). 

      Schedule for Sum of Us book study

  14. May 2021
    1. The larger purpose, it seems, is to rally the Republican base—to push back against the recent reexaminations of the role that slavery and segregation have played in American history and the attempts to redress those historical offenses. The shorthand for the Republicans’ bogeyman is an idea that has until now mostly lived in academia: critical race theory.

      main purpose of Republican obsession with critical race theory

    1. has sub-properties prov:hadMember prov:wasAttributedTo prov:wasAssociatedWith prov:wasGeneratedBy prov:wasDerivedFrom prov:wasInvalidatedBy prov:used prov:actedOnBehalfOf prov:wasInformedBy prov:wasStartedBy prov:wasEndedBy

      Another short list that looks like a distillation of the provenance model

    2. Table 2: Qualification Property and Qualified Influence Class used to qualify a Starting-point Property. Influenced Class Unqualified Influence Influencing Class Qualification Property Qualified Influence Influencer Property prov:Entity prov:wasGeneratedBy prov:Activity prov:qualifiedGeneration prov:Generation prov:activity prov:Entity prov:wasDerivedFrom prov:Entity prov:qualifiedDerivation prov:Derivation prov:entity prov:Entity prov:wasAttributedTo prov:Agent prov:qualifiedAttribution prov:Attribution prov:agent prov:Activity prov:used prov:Entity prov:qualifiedUsage prov:Usage prov:entity prov:Activity prov:wasInformedBy prov:Activity prov:qualifiedCommunication prov:Communication prov:activity prov:Activity prov:wasAssociatedWith prov:Agent prov:qualifiedAssociation prov:Association prov:agent prov:Agent prov:actedOnBehalfOf prov:Agent prov:qualifiedDelegation prov:Delegation prov:agent

      a table that looks like a good distillation of where to start in understanding the provenance model.

  15. Mar 2021
    1. pipelines: default: - step: name: Build and test image: node:10.15.0 script: - npm install - npm test - npm run build artifacts: - dist/** - step: name: Deploy image: python:3.7.2 trigger: manual script: - python deploy.py

      possible to use different images for different steps in a Bibutcket pipeline

    1. Last week, state Health Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said the state didn’t expect to make any other groups eligible between now and then to maintain the focus on vaccinating the most vulnerable people. But Newsom said “in the next week or so” he’ll make an announcement about expanded eligibility. Newsom and spokespeople for the California Department of Public Health declined to provide details. Dr. George Rutherford, an epidemiologist at the University of California, San Francisco, said with California stepping up its pace of vaccinations and more supply coming soon it makes sense to consider adding new groups. The state could expand vaccinations to people ages 50 or 55 and up or allow shots for everyone in the least advantaged communities, not just those in the currently eligible groups.

      Might there be a return to prioritizing 50-64 yrs olds for CA vaccines (as in the old Phase 1C) next week?

    1. Safari is now O’Reilly for Public Libraries. With O’Reilly for Public Libraries, you  get unlimited access to 50K+ titles (including O’Reilly books in early release), 30K+ hours of video, case studies from top companies, learning paths, expert playlists, and more—with nearly 1,000 topics to explore in technology and business. And with a range of content formats tailored to all levels, you can learn in the way that works best for you.

      BPL has a subset of Safari

  16. Feb 2021
    1. Composer of the WeekG. F. Handel (1685–1759) was an investor in the transatlantic slave trade. In 1715 he bought shares in Britain’s South Sea Company, which two years earlier had been granted the right to supply enslaved Africans to South America and islands in the South Pacific. Recent research by David Hunter, Librarian Emeritus at the University of Texas, Austin, has turned up Handel’s name on a 1720 list of “adventurers” in the Royal African Company, one of the most prolific slave-trading outfits in modern history, as well as several investment orders bearing Handel’s signature.Handel was also a composer, and remains near the top of today’s art music canon. His investments require us to grapple with what Hunter has called “the auditory trace” of slavery and its proceeds. Of course, such a situation is hardly unique to Handel. Numerous investors and subscribers to the Royal Academy of Music owned shares in the Royal African Company, including the Duke of Chandos, the composer’s former patron, for whom Handel had written his oratorio Esther in 1718. Music-lovers must acknowledge that slavery was a major driver of the economies that supported artistic production, and that it provided a set of pathways along which European musicians, musical objects, and musical practices could move around the world. Music became a tool of slavery and colonization, particularly in the hands of European powers aiming to extend or tighten their imperial tentacles. From the Dutch in Indone-sia to the Portuguese in Brazil, colonists often entertained themselves by creating choirs and orchestras composed of enslaved indigenous musicians. Carl Pachelbel, son of the composer Johann, lived twenty years in Charleston, SC, where he held two enslaved Africans and probably taught the families of planta-tion owners. Thomas Jefferson, one of the period’s most famous slaveholders, loved European art music (although his favorite composers are virtual unknowns now), while his daughter became an accomplished harpsichordist. He installed plate glass windows at Monticello to insulate himself from the music and other sounds made by the people he held captive. In Notes on the State of Virginia, Jefferson even ap-plied his racist ideas about intelligence to music, expressing doubt whether descendants of African people had the intellectual capacity to compose an “extensive run of melody, or of complicated harmony” (the cruel irony here is that he felt he could speculate about the musical abilities of people whose sounds he designed his house to silence).Such historical truth-telling is particularly important because details like these have been not only forgot-ten but willfully omitted, downplayed, or excused. Some of Handel’s earlier biographers, for instance, took active steps to conceal the nature of the South Sea Company’s activities. The point is not necessarily to stop enjoying Handel’s music. The policy of the music ministry at All Souls has been to cease using the music of composers engaged in unacceptable conduct only if they are living, both to avoid directly lining their pockets with royalties and to avoid re-traumatizing survivors of crimes: last year we joined numerous organizations in silencing the music of David Haas, whom 44 women have accused of sexual and spiritual abuse. Dead composers like Handel, however, can offer us a different opportunity: to take what good we can from the music and, instead of leaving the bad (as the saying would have it), to bring the bad to light, and attempt to learn something

      essay on Handel

    1. Composer of the WeekJ.S. Bach (1685–1750) was no international superstar during his lifetime (unlike his contemporary G.F. Handel). As the so-called galant style was becoming fashionable, he composed music that one of his contemporaries called “turgid and confused,” unnaturally gnarled by “an excess of art.” Even through the year 1800, the work of “Sebas-tian Bach”—as he was then called in order to distinguish him from his better-known sons—remained obscure, its circulation largely confined to circles of professional musicians and amateur connoisseurs, particularly in and around Berlin.So how did “Sebastian Bach” become the deified “Bach” of today? For one thing, those who valued his music pro-moted it. Laying early groundwork was Sara Levy, a skilled keyboard player, avid music collector, and patron of two of J.S.’s successful sons. She cultivated a “Bach Cult” in the late eighteenth century by hosting musical gath-erings called salons; by giving public concerts at Berlin’s Singakademie; and by donating her vast music collection to the same institution. She was also the great aunt of composer Felix Mendelssohn, who attended her concerts as well as studied Bach’s choral writing at the Singakademie from the very scores she had given to its library. Felix went on to engineer the 1829 performances of the St. Matthew Passion that marked a high point in the contem-porary Bach Revival. This was one moment within a longer process of using music by German composers to help construct a German national identity (Germany being only a confederation at the time). As the century wore on, German authors deployed analysis, criticism, and historical narrative in strategic ways that would center and lionize those composers and their music. This process fueled continuing interest and investment in disseminating J.S.’s output, and helped establish its core (in some cases peculiar) features—such as complex counterpoint—as criteria for good music.So, if “Bach” became a thing in part because of German nationalism, why is he still a thing? The largest-scale an-swer is: the canon. Artistic canons are sets of artworks that are regarded as particularly famous or of high quality. As sets, they are by definition exclusionary: certain composers/works are in, others are out. As sets of prestigious and authoritative things, they define what artists (and wider societies, for that matter) are expected to know and respect, creating ways to signal social status as well as giving the illusion of objectivity in subjective matters. In certain circles, knowledge of “Bach” still functions as a way of signaling that one is educated, cultured, high-class, in-the-know; meanwhile, every musician has had to say things like, “Don’t get me wrong, I love [famous com-poser’s name], but...” The use of an already exclusionary structure to police social conduct and artistic discourse in these ways means that canons cannot help but reproduce whatever inequities are written into them. That is an especially serious problem because canons do not arise through impersonal forces like “the test of time.” Rather, canons are made and shaped by people and institutions. As such, they encode oppressive structures that result from human inconsistency, inertia, selfishness, and hypocrisy. Think of the names of some classical composers: how many are German men?Everyone is allowed their own aesthetic opinions. But everyone should know that those opinions have histories. The now-widespread notion that “Bach” was a great composer was made possible through posthumous advocacy and efforts to increase access to his music (Beethoven benefitted from similar campaigns during the nineteenth century). It expanded due in part to the imperatives of nineteenth-century German nationalism. And it contin-ues to depend on criteria of musical quality that were derived from his own music. Ultimately, the cachet of J.S. Bach’s supposed greatness reflects canonic processes of which we have little reason to be proud.

      essay on J. S. Bach in the Service Bulletin for 2021.02.21

    1. Summer Book Group During the summer, All Soulsians select a book to read together and devote the 10:10 Sunday adult formation hour to discussing that book. The Adult Formation Committee requests your nominations for a book for Summer Book Group.  Books may be fiction or nonfiction. After nominations are gathered, we will put nominees up for a parish-wide vote.  Beginning in June 2021, all are welcome to join us in discussing the book during formation hour at 10:10 am.   Help us pick the book by submitting suggestions either here or by emailing carajobson@hotmail.com

      All Souls Summer Book Group 2021

  17. Dec 2020
    1. Woolf later reworked and expanded this short story into the book Mrs. Dalloway, which was published in 1925, and will remain under copyright in the US for a couple of years longer.

      When, exactly, will Mrs. Dalloway go into the public domain?

  18. Nov 2020
    1. Advent Ingathering Don’t forget to claim your items for our Advent Ingathering! We are collecting new items for our friends living in camps in Berkeley for the first three weeks. Put your name and the number you are purchasing next to what you are donating it and drop it off that Sunday (or the following Wednesday) in the big trash can outside the chapel doors. Week four will be a collection for the Berkeley Food Pantry! Week 1: 8th and Harrison Wish List: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1rSXuslSjtWMKcFNBTJ0ZIbAcF-DxSxtIZ6R9XwAJJuI/edit Week 2: Here/There Wish List: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KhWcpk_CbHYtvI9g-KJrGig8lF77bXcpsn1AYfdVbAk/edit Week 3: 2nd and Jones Wish List: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Jln0UI9kBvlbWI2OOyU-xIYWqKLdIrBfHZkz_bJ7fmc/edit Week 4: Berkeley Food Pantry (details to come)

      Instructions for Advent Ingathering 2020

    1. Since 1964, there have been 538 electors. The number of electors from each state is the same quantity as the state's Congresspeople (members of the House of Representatives and two Senators). There are 100 senators and 435 state representatives.[20][21][22] The Twenty-third Amendment, ratified in 1961, provides that the district established pursuant to Article I, Section 8 as the seat of the federal government (namely, Washington, D.C.) is entitled to the number of electors it would have if it was a state, but no more than that of the least populous state.[23] In practice, that results in Washington D.C. being entitled to 3 electors. U.S. territories (both modern-day territories like Puerto Rico and historical territories like Dakota Territory) have never been entitled to any electors in t

      How get 538: 100 + 435 + 3 (for DC)

  19. Sep 2020
    1. 5th Wednesday CERT Community Meeting

      Link to the agenda/notes for the meeting: https://bit.ly/albanycert20200930+


      The Register link doesn't go anywhere -- please remove

  20. Aug 2020
  21. Jul 2020
    1. The droppers now work robotically, but the plastic needed to manufacture the tips is shrinking across the globe, experts say. If labs run out of the tiny, crucial components, the entire system could grind to a halt by October, they say. “Without these little plastic tips,” Kocher said, “testing will break down again.”

      Is this a problem faced by other states and other countries? This shortage of plastic tips seems to be a global problem.

    2. L.A. County public health officials on Wednesday limited the criteria for testing due to dwindling supplies. The ever-fragile testing infrastructure is once again threatened by shortages of swabs, reagents and, curiously enough, those tiny plastic pipette tips that lab workers had wielded by hand in the Downey lab.
    3. In rural towns and inner-city neighborhoods, California is scaling back its testing expansion, citing costs.

      Costs? Where's the federal funding?

    4. Taiwan monitored quarantined people with digital fencing that sounded an enforcement alarm whenever one of some 50,000 quarantined citizens ventured too far from home. Contact tracers in South Korea and Singapore kept track of infected people through GPS and Bluetooth data.
    5. Los Angeles County, after a massive team scale-up, still had only 1,759 contact tracers for more than 10 million residents, and, in the U.S., there was another unique hurdle: enforcement.
    6. By early May, California had gone from 2,000 to nearly 40,000 tests per day. The Curative-Korva lab was running 10,000 of them.

      Wow. Was that rate sustained?

    7. Curative
    8. Meanwhile, at UC Berkeley, molecular biologist Fyodor Urnov formed what he called “SEAL Team Six”: hand-selected scientists, physicians and students who had constructed a volunteer lab in a matter of weeks to help relieve Quest’s backlog. They “moved heaven and earth” to get government certifications and create a highly automated lab that could run as many as 1,000 patient samples a day, he said.But when Urnov told nearby hospitals he could provide free testing and results in 48 hours, the hospitals declined, saying their electronic records systems were still entangled at Quest and LabCorp. The volunteers were stunned.

      Is this still the situation? A role for volunteer programmers to help disentangle the EHR system?

    9. But the fluid was so scant that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration began endorsing the use of basic saline in its place.
    10. For tens of thousands of Californians to receive a coronavirus test, medical staff needed just as many cotton-tipped swabs — the “simplest piece” and yet the “No. 1” issue
    11. But unfortunately for Quest — and other private players such as LabCorp — the growing capacity to detect cases was only as good as supply lines. And quickly, every step in the process showed strain.
    12. The laboratory testing process relied on strikingly inefficient instruments: humans.The strict protocol approved by federal health officials meant no automation at L.A. County’s public health lab.

      why no automation allowed?

    1. How should the KN95 mask fit to provide protection? The respirator must form a seal with the wearer’s face, so that air passes through the filter (instead of around the edges) before it is inhaled. To ensure a proper seal, the wearer should ensure the respirator edges do not touch any facial hair. Clean-shaven is ideal for a good seal.

      Shave to get best fit for KN95 (and N95 presumably).

  22. Jun 2020
    1. Cloth masks obstruct a high portion of the droplets from the mouth and nose that spread the virus

      Argument for primary mechanism for effectiveness of cloth masks: "Cloth masks obstruct a high portion of the droplets from the mouth and nose that spread the virus."

    1. We must reject any thinking of our cities as a "battlespace" that our uniformed military is called upon to "dominate." At home, we should use our military only when requested to do so, on very rare occasions, by state governors. Militarizing our response, as we witnessed in Washington, D.C., sets up a conflict — a false conflict — between the military and civilian society. It erodes the moral ground that ensures a trusted bond between men and women in uniform and the society they are sworn to protect, and of which they themselves are a part. Keeping public order rests with civilian state and local leaders who best understand their communities and are answerable to them.

      key quote

  23. Apr 2020
    1. Don’t use surgical masks or N-95s – medical grade masks are needed for health care workers and first responders.

      I think this is a loose reading of her own order, which only states that Berkeley people shouldn't buy N-95 and that a N-95 with a vent does not by itself constitute a face covering for the purposes of the order.

  24. Mar 2020
    1. At the moment, we are just playing for time. Whether social distancing is working will be clearer in a month than it is now, but even then we will not know to a moral certainty when adults can safely go back to the office and children can go back to school. Which is partly why employers, university officials, and others have given such widely varying time frames for how long they are shutting things down—two weeks, until the end of April, until the end of the academic year, until sometime later.

      word "safely" used in this paragraph.

    1. Safe spaces can start from family or group of people sharing a single lodging. Multiple dwellings can be combined, including travel between them (e.g. walking or driving), if safe protocols are established and adhered to. To successfully establish a Safe Space, EVERY participant has to agree to the principles of minimizing external physical contact and adhere to it. There also have to be clear instructions about how to act and cooperate. Members of the same safe-space should be candid about travel history and health conditions, and be responsible for each other's health.

      safe spaces among multiple dwellings.

  25. Dec 2019
    1. Between Here and There For some years now one of my least favorite pieces of public art has been located where Adeline Street becomes Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, just where the BART tracks emerge from underground at the Berkeley/Oakland city border. As a proud native of Oakland I am frustrated by the misuse of one of Gertrude Stein’s quotes from her autobiography, that when she went back to Oakland, “there was no there there.” What Stein was lamenting is that when she went back to her childhood home it was gone––torn down and replaced by an industrial park. So the declaration that Berkeley is HERE while Oakland is THERE is just, well, missing the point. But recently I have found reason to spend time in the shadow of those letters, thanks to an invitation from an All Soulsian, Tess Taylor. Tess had been spending time with the residents of those living in the encampment just west of the sculpture and thought that it would be a good thing for me to visit and spend time there as well. She was absolutely right. In my conversations with several members of the camp I have been stunned, saddened, and inspired, often all at the same time. It is incredibly hard to live on the street. The combined effects of wind and rain, noise, vermin, all alongside being frighteningly vulnerable to crime, are just staggering. And so I have often been deeply saddened to see the toll that living on this patch of dirt takes on these women, teenagers, and men. And. Rarely in my life have I come across a group of humans who are so diligent and intentional about living together in community. There are clear rules about living in the Here and There camp––it’s clean and sober, you have to keep your tent and surroundings free of trash, everyone needs to pitch in for common work, and you need to participate in the weekly camp meetings. The ways that they live together are Gospel: caring for anyone in need, pooling resources so that all can survive, holding each other accountable for their behavior. And. I don’t want to romanticize the incredible difficulties that the residents of this camp face. Everyone that I’ve talked with wants to live indoors, some in this area, some away from the Bay. But for various reasons they are stuck between here and there. And, they have made the choice––every day they make the choice––to live with respect and care for each other, those living around them in the neighborhood, and the environment as a whole. As Tess and I have talked over the past couple of months it has become clear to me that like Tess, I wish to be in relationship with those living in the Here and There camp. And I am hoping that others at All Souls Parish might be willing as well. Yes, to help provide basic supplies so that they can survive the winter to come as well as possible. Below in this Pathfinder you’ll find the specifics of what they are hoping for: boots, weatherproof tarps, waterproof bins, rain jackets. But also to offer what they are also hoping for as well––human relationship. Because they are hoping that folks might be willing to spend time playing board games, offer rides up to Tilden, be able to drive them to deliver items that aren’t needed in this camp to other organizations or camps that could use them. In short, through discreet and tangible ways, to be in relationship with them. In my brief times in conversation there––about solar panels, HMOs delaying hip surgeries, broken relationships, desires to live more simply, and the turns that our lives have taken––I have consistently come away feeling both unexpectedly grounded and uplifted. Grounded in that I am more aware of the reality that our neighbors are living in. Uplifted by their witness to a righteous life, the kind of life we see in St. Francis, Dorothy Day, and many others. These are some of their hopes. My hope is that through our giving––of boots and tarps, board games and rides, time and attention––we will once again realize the common space we share between Here and There and that our lives and theirs will be changed. Peace, Phil+

      Phil+ on Here/There community

    2. Search Update The search for our new Associate Rector is ON! While there has been plenty of transitional activity going on behind the scenes—sending off Liz tearfully and prayerfully; deep conversation about the needs of this parish and staff at this present moment; how to best describe this job accurately and compellingly; what skills and attributes are needed to do it well—we  have entered a new active phase of the search.  Our job posting and a full description of the role went live on our All Souls website this week, and they were published in diocesan and wider Episcopal church newsletters and websites. As we know that personal referral is the most powerful tool for identifying good candidates for any job, we are asking everyone to share the job posting widely and wisely on their networks. We will be accepting applications until January 21st, at which point we will begin blind, anonymized readings of application materials and choose a few candidates to interview over video call. We expect to host in-person interviews with finalists in March, and Phil+ will make his final selection before Easter. We hope that our new Associate Rector will join us in work and worship beginning around May 1st.  Though we are cautioned that response to open positions in the diocese is significantly low right now, I am hopeful and confident that this search is going to buck the trend. I am encouraged by the crack team we have on the case—my co-chair Caroline McCall, members (Jen Dary, Diane Haavik, Michael Lemaire, Calvin Payne-Taylor, Howard Purdue, Raymond Yee, Jennifer Ying)– a strong process for searching and vetting, and the support of Phil+. Most of all, I am confident because I know that this is an exceptional opportunity for a priest to grow and lead at the most vibrant (Spirit-filled, open-hearted, energetic!) parish I can imagine. Please pray for this process—that some outstandingly talented and grounded individuals will hear our call, and that we have the discernment to identify them. If you have any questions about this search process, please don’t hesitate to bring them to me, Caroline, or any of the team members. 

      Update on Associate Rector Search (Dec 19, 2019)

    3. The Poetry of Advent I was Mary once, writes Jericho Brown in his fierce, lovely poem Nativity, from a book of poems he calls The New Testament. Reading this poem can’t help make you ask: Were you Mary once, too? When was it, and what did it feel like? Has an angel ever come and told you something totally unexpected? As we approach advent, I find myself thinking again about the ways we enter these old stories, and the ways we let them enter us newly. Every year, for me, they feel familiar and also strange, somewhere in between what I think I know and what I might still want to figure out. For me, one of the ways to enter a text—and to savor the way it is working in my life— is to let myself explore it in a poem. Writing towards or dreaming away from liturgy can be a way to let stories nourish and grow fuller inside us, a way to practice our faith conversations, and to let ourselves dance between faith and doubt. We might take pleasure in departing from one line beautiful liturgy, or tell a faith story in detail. Who, for instance IS the thief in the night? What IS the armor of light? Where are the angels we find in the world? This advent, I have the pleasure of offering an advent poetry class here at All Souls. In it we’ll look at the week’s liturgy, and also the ways that contemporary poets have found ways of inhabiting the Christmas tale. Together we’ll do a bit of meditative writing. Poetry can occasionally feel intimidating to some, but I promise that it’s not—all that’s required is a willingness to savor words and images, a willingness to daydream, and possibly a favorite pencil or pen. It can be a joyful thing to make art in community. I hope you will join me. December 1, 8 and 15. 10:10 am. —Tess Taylor

      Wonderful class at All Souls on the poetry of Advent by poet and All Soulsian Tess Taylor

  26. Nov 2019
    1. The words INNER and OUTER are optional in all forms. INNER is the default; LEFT, RIGHT, and FULL imply an outer join.

      INNER is the default join type

  27. Oct 2019
    1. On Stephen Ministry

      Maggie Cooke's "On Stephen Ministry" from 2019-10-03 issue of The Pathfinder: All Souls Parish Newsletter

  28. Sep 2019
    1. 2020 Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics Alex EskinUniversity of Chicago Citation: For revolutionary discoveries in the dynamics and geometry of moduli spaces of Abelian differentials, including the proof of the “magic wand theorem” with Maryam Mirzakhani. Description: Eskin teamed with famed Iranian mathematician and Fields Medalist, Maryam Mirzakhni, to prove a theorem about dynamics on moduli spaces. Their tour de force, published in 2013 after five years of labor, is a result with many consequences. One addresses the longstanding problem: If a beam of light from a point source bounces around a mirrored room, will it eventually reach the entire room – or will some parts remain forever dark? After translating the problem to a highly abstract multi-dimensional setting, the two mathematicians were able to show that for polygonal rooms with angles which are fractions of whole numbers, only a finite number of points would remain unlit. Mirzakhani passed away in 2017, at age 40, after fighting breast cancer for several years.

      2020 Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics

  29. Aug 2019
    1. In 2016, Fryer published a paper concluding that although minorities (African Americans and Hispanics) are more likely to experience police use of force than whites, they were not more likely to be shot by police than whites.[11] The study generated considerable controversy and criticism.[12][13][14][15]

      Summary of Fryer's study on police violence.

    1. The United States has secretive agencies that do legally dubious things, but it doesn’t have a deep state in the Turkish sense. It may be said to have a deep state in another sense, however: America. America preceded, and brought into being, the republic we now live in—the United States of America. Almost everyone still talks about America, not about the United States; about Americans, not USAers. America, in short, was not extinguished by the United States. It persists as a buried, residual homeland—the patria that would be exposed if the USA were to dissolve. Primordial America (at least in the popular imagination) was where folks prayed hard, worked hard on the land, and had rightful recourse to violence. In this imaginary place, people were white, Christian, English-speaking. They had God-given dominion over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. All of this inevitably informs the way American nationals apprehend one another and their country. They feel in their bones that some people are Americans and other people are merely citizens of the United States.Our deep state doesn’t require conspiracies or coups or even self-awareness. It is a permanent ideological feature, like gravity. It reveals itself in our politics. A common trope—“Imagine if a Democrat did that”—refers to a state of affairs in which one party is bound by norms and rules, and the other party less so. One president must constantly generate his legitimacy, even as he excellently complies with the rules; another president benefits from a legitimacy so profound that his rule-breaking has the effect of rule-making. One group is perceived to be synthetic and unpatriotic, another as authentic and patriotic. This guy is a snowflake, that guy is a victim of persecution. And so on.

      Spot on analysis of "real Americans" vs "mere citizens of the United States"

  30. Jul 2019
    1. Examples of potentially unlawful conduct include insults, taunting, or ethnic epithets, such as making fun of a person's foreign accent or comments like, "Go back to where you came from, " whether made by supervisors or by co-workers.

      The insidiousness of "Go back to where you come from" has been recognized for a long time.

    1. If an agent asks you for documents, what you need to provide differs depending on your immigration status. U.S. citizens do not have to carry proof of citizenship on their person if they are in the United States.

      rights of US citizens

    1. The Battlestar Galactica, an aircraft carrier in space that fought in the earlier war, is in the final stages of being decommissioned and converted to a museum when the attack occurs. During her decades of colonial service the Galactica's computer systems had never been networked so the Galactica is unaffected by the Cylon sabotage.

      Galactica, using old tech, was saved from the Cylon hack.

    1. The privacy policy against surveillance seems to be better in G Suite (which is not free) seems to be better than that of Google Drive (which is free of charge).

  31. Jun 2019
    1. http://www.flickr.com/photos/raymondyee/archives/

      Unfortunately, this URL structure is broken now. Sigh.

  32. May 2019
    1. If you run it, it should read a data file, run some tests, and print a message like, “All tests passed.”

      You need to run the code within the code directory.

  33. Feb 2019
    1. Then, about 15 minutes into the address, Mr. Trump hit on an issue foremost in his consciousness — the looming threat of congressional investigations into his conduct.First, he offered what amounted to a plea for the new Democratic majority in the House to avoid “ridiculous partisan investigations” and cautioned his enemies not to seek “revenge” against him.Then came the bluntest of threats to the woman sitting behind him, Speaker Nancy Pelosi: “If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation. It just doesn’t work that way!” he said.

      Trump's attack on investigations into his administration

  34. Jan 2019
    1. 1:15 a.m.American Indian tribes in the Upper Midwest are helping members in need with heating supplies as extreme cold sets in.On the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in the Dakotas, many people live in housing that's decades old and in disrepair, or in emergency government housing left over from southern disasters such as hurricanes.Tribe emergency manager Elliott Ward says those structures don't hold up well to extreme cold and strong wind. Wind chills in the area early Tuesday were as low as minus 39 (negative 39 degrees Celsius).In northern Minnesota, the wind chill was as low as minus 59 (negative 51 degrees Celsius).White Earth Band of Ojibwe (oh-JIHB'-wah) energy assistance manager Chris Fairbanks calls it "a scary situation." She says officials are swamped getting people the heating help they need.

      situation on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in the extreme cold.

  35. Dec 2018
    1. If you haven't filled out an Emergency Form, you can download it, fill it out, and send it to Margaret.

    1. A lawyer for Mr. Weisselberg, Mary E. Mulligan, also declined to comment, as did Guy Petrillo, a lawyer for Mr. Cohen.

      Per Maggie Haberman on "The Washington Weekly" (Dec 14, 2018) , it's "not nothing" that Weisselberg has his own lawyer apart from the group counsel representing the Trump organization

    1. And here’s the thing: As far as I can tell, not a single prominent Republican in Washington has condemned the power grab in Wisconsin, the similar grab in Michigan, or even what looks like outright electoral fraud in North Carolina. Elected Republicans don’t just increasingly share the values of white nationalist parties like Fidesz or Poland’s Law and Justice; they also share those parties’ contempt for democracy. The G.O.P. is an authoritarian party in waiting.

      I've been looking for Republicans who are speaking out against this anti-democratic power grab by Republicans in WI.

    1. Fentanyl, a newer synthetic opioid painkiller, is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine and 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin,[57] with only 2 mg becoming a lethal dose. It is pure white, odorless and flavorless, with a potency strong enough that police and first responders helping overdose victims have themselves overdosed by simply touching or inhaling a small amount.[193][194][195]


  36. Nov 2018
    1. Neutronium (sometimes shortened to neutrium,[1] also referred to as neutrite[2]) is a hypothetical substance composed purely of neutrons.

      claim that neutronium is a "hypothetical substance"

    1. Ctrl+Space

      Unfortunately, this keyboard shortcut conflicts with one in ChromeOS (for changing back to the previous input method)

    2. Now you know how to search for all works of art, or all buildings, or all human settlements: the magic incantation wdt:P31/wdt:P279*, along with the appropriate class. This uses some more SPARQL features that I haven’t explained yet, but quite honestly, this is almost the only relevant use of those features, so you don’t need to understand how it works in order to use WDQS effectively. If you want to know, I’ll explain it in a bit, but you can also just skip the next section and memorize or copy+paste wdt:P31/wdt:P279* from here when you need it.

      wdt:P31/wdt:P279* = magic incantation for Wikidata SPARQL to mean "instance of or subclass of"

    1. And right now, you don't hear a lot of people who put climate as their number one issue. You don't hear a lot of them offering constructive innovative solutions for the future. It's usually just a lot of alarmism, but I think the report is important and it shows that the climate is changing.

      Ben Sasse, who fashions himself as being a reasonable voice, labels as "alarmist" people who think climate change is the number one issue.

  37. Oct 2018
    1. I’d rather have an informed nonvoter than an uninformed voter going in and making a choice they don’t understand.

      We must inform ourselves and others.

  38. Sep 2018
    1. 22. For Social Service Heavenly Father, whose blessed Son came not to be served but to serve: Bless all who, following in his steps, give themselves to the service of others; that with wisdom, patience, and courage, they may minister in his Name to the suffering, the friendless, and the needy; for the love of him who laid down his life for us, your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

      a fitting collect for Stephen Ministry

  39. Jul 2018
    1. To her, this was a moral threat far greater than any character flaw Trump might have, as was what she called “the racial divide,” which she believed was getting worse. The evidence was all the black people protesting about the police, and all the talk about the legacy of slavery, which Sheila never believed was as bad as people said it was. “Slaves were valued,” she said. “They got housing. They got fed. They got medical care.” She was suspicious of what she saw as the constant agitation of blacks against whites, the taking down of Confederate memorials and the raising of others, such as the new memorial to the victims of lynching, just up the highway in Montgomery. “I think they are promoting violence,” Sheila said, thinking about the 800 weathered, steel monoliths hanging from a roof to evoke the lynchings, one for each American county where the violence was carried out, including Crenshaw County, where a man named Jesse Thornton was lynched in 1940 in downtown Luverne. “How do you think a young black man would feel looking at that?” Linda asked. “Wouldn’t you feel a sickness in your stomach?” “I think it would only make you have more violent feelings — feelings of revenge,” said Sheila. It reminded her of a time when she was a girl in Montgomery, when the now-famous civil rights march from Selma was heading to town and her parents, fearing violence, had sent her to the country to stay with relatives. “It’s almost like we’re going to live that Rosa Parks time again,” she said, referring to the civil rights activist. “It was just a scary time, having lived through it.” She thought an all-out race war was now in the realm of possibility. And that was where she had feared things were heading, right up until election night, when she and Linda and everyone they knew were praying for God to save them. And God sent them Donald Trump.

      Probably the most striking part of this article is what Sheila Butler says about slavery, the "racial divide", and the possibility of an all-out race war.

    1. Adult patrons can now borrow telescopes! Two Orion 4.5” Starblast Reflector Telescopes are now available from the Central Library First Floor Service Desk. Telescopes check out for one week. They come with instructions and are easy to use. Stop by and try one out today!


    1. Andrew Ng — a former Baidu executive, Drive.AI board member, and one of the industry’s most prominent boosters — argues the problem is less about building a perfect driving system than training bystanders to anticipate self-driving behavior. In other words, we can make roads safe for the cars instead of the other way around. As an example of an unpredictable case, I asked him whether he thought modern systems could handle a pedestrian on a pogo stick, even if they had never seen one before. “I think many AV teams could handle a pogo stick user in pedestrian crosswalk,” Ng told me. “Having said that, bouncing on a pogo stick in the middle of a highway would be really dangerous.” “Rather than building AI to solve the pogo stick problem, we should partner with the government to ask people to be lawful and considerate,” he said. “Safety isn’t just about the quality of the AI technology.”

      Is Andrew Ng actually saying that pedestrians have to learn to accommodate self-driving cars and not the other way around?

    1. Another common area of pain occurs near the middle of the top of the foot, generally a bit to the outside of the foot. In this area of the foot the tendons that go to the toes can become inflamed. This is called extensor tendonitis. One cause of this condition is excessive tightness of the calf muscle. When the calf muscle is tight it places excessive stress on the tendons on the top of the foot that pull the foot upward and against the tightness of the calf muscles. Wearing a shoe with a one-inch heel will help to take the stress off of the tendons on the top of the foot. Aggressive stretching of the calf muscle is also very helpful. Oral anti-inflammatory medications can help. When these measures do not work a functional orthotic should be tried. The orthotic corrects the alignment of the foot taking the stress off of the tendons on the top of the foot.

      extensor tendonitis

  40. Jun 2018
    1. "So I am in full sympathy with these critiques of ICE, but I think it's unrealistic to think that if we eliminate ICE, we will get rid of the problem. Because I think Congress will then turn around and expand the powers of CBP, and basically restore its powers to conduct interior enforcement. That's what it was doing before 9/11. It was doing both border and interior enforcement. So Congress will either do that, or they'll create a new agency. I think the solution is to create some kind of permanent oversight body, and ideally by Congress, and an oversight body that has some kind of enforcement power."

      Key recommendation from Debbie Kang re congressional oversight of ICE and CBP

    1. Dozens of panicked workers fled in every direction, some wedging themselves between beef carcasses or crouching under bloody butcher tables. About 100 workers, including at least one American citizen, were rounded up — every Latino employee at the plant, it turned out, save a man who had hidden in a freezer.

      ICE incarcerated at least one American citizen and every Latino employee at the plant

    1. KASIE HUNT: I think it's becoming a litmus test for this issue in potentially a 2020 primary situation. I mean, if you think about Kamala Harris in particular, she has been very consistent quite frankly, if you're an activist on immigration, she is one of your people. She took a vote in the Senate, she was one of only three Democrats, kind of buck their own party on a compromise. I mean she - I mean she is, I don't want to quite describe it as farthest to the left, but she is one far edge -- CHUCK TODD: Of sort of the mainstream presidentials on this issue. KASIE HUNT: Of this issue. She is setting the bar for where that is. And people, frankly, are responding. I mean, the event that we went to cover, she went to visit a detention center where mothers were being held that'd been separated. And they didn't organize a rally, but there were hundreds of people who showed up on the street outside, some with organizations, the A.C.L.U., others, but they came, and they came to see her.

      Kasie Hunt argues that Kamala Harris has been a consistent ally to immigration activists.

    1. But this cycle of work and visits became much harder to execute after the United States passed the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882. This draconian law barred the entry of Chinese laborers, yet also ended up stimulating the formation of Chinese businesses through a system of visa preferences. Owners of particular businesses could obtain “merchant status,” which enabled them to enter the United States and sponsor relatives. After a 1915 court case granted these special immigration privileges to Chinese restaurant owners, entrepreneurial people in the United States and China opened restaurants as a way to bypass restrictions in U.S. immigration law. Flows of newcomers from China were diverted into the restaurant industry.

      Exception for Chinese restaurant owners in 1915 despite Chinese Exclusion Action of 1882.

    1. At what distance does the MyNotifi® device disconnect from the smart phone app? Bluetooth Low Energy connects to about 30 meters. This can be affected in buildings and houses depending on how many walls separate the device from the smart phone. The amount of electrical in the walls can also affect connection of Bluetooth Low Energy. It is recommended to keep your smart phone on your person or within close proximity, not only for MyNotifi®, but for other reasons as well.

      must keep MyNotfi devices within 30m of smartphone to be in BTLE range

    1. Calculating Statistical Significance We calculate statistical significance using a standard 95% confidence level. When we display an answer option as statistically significant, it means the difference between two groups has less than a 5% probability of occurring by chance or sampling error alone, which is often displayed as p < 0.05. To calculate the statistical significance between groups, we use the following formulas: Statistic Description Formula a1The proportion of the first group answering a question a certain way multiplied by the sample size of that group.b1The proportion of the second group answering a question a certain way multiplied by the sample size of that group.Pooled Sample Proportion (p)The combination of the two proportions for both groups.Standard Error (SE)A measure of how far your proportion is from the true proportion. A smaller number means the proportion is close to the true proportion, a larger number means the proportion is far away from the true proportion.Test Statistic (t)A t-statistic. The number of standard deviations a number is away from the mean.Statistical SignificanceIf the absolute value of the test statistic is greater than 1.96* standard deviations of the mean, then it's considered a statistically significant difference. *1.96 is a number used for the 95% confidence level since 95% of the area under a student's t-distribution function lies within 1.96 standard deviations of the mean.

      How SurveyMonkey calculates statistical significance

    1. After more than 40 hours of research and over a month of testing 13 devices, we think the GreatCall Lively Mobile is the best medical alert system for most people. Unlike most devices, it can reach either 911 or a call center from anywhere in your home or out in the world. That means the GreatCall Lively Mobile can help in all manner of situations, from getting EMTs and loved ones on the scene after a fall to contacting a friend for you if you can’t find your phone (yes, really; we tried it). Share this review on Facebook Share this review on Twitter Save this review on Pocket Share this review on Pinterest Share this review with E-mail It’s less expensive per month than any similar device, and relatively stylish, too. But choosing a medical alert is a personal decision, so there are different factors to consider: If you won’t wear a medical alert that looks vaguely like a medical device, won’t remember to charge a medical alert, or will have trouble pushing a button during an emergency, we have picks for you, too. Our pick GreatCall Lively Mobile The best medical alert system Our favorite medical alert system is comfortable to wear around your neck or on a belt clip. We found that the call center picks up faster than the competition, typically 15 seconds after you push the button. $40 from GreatCall $34 from Walmart The water-resistant GreatCall Lively Mobile can dial a call center or 911 directly (the ability to do both is a rare feature) from anywhere, and it’s easier to wear than the competition: It can go on a lanyard (with a magnetic clasp) that’s long enough to slide over your head, or on a belt clip. The silver box and plain white indicator light are more understated than the competition, and GreatCall offers the lowest-cost month-to-month plan of anything we looked at. The battery lasts 24 hours, according to GreatCall, though we found it could go up to 50 hours with minimal use. The advertised battery life is on the low end of the models we tested, but our experts recommended getting in the habit of charging your medical alert every day anyway. The GreatCall Lively Mobile works anywhere there’s Verizon cell service, which we’ve found to be the most reliable network. Advertisement googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1524661673579-0'); }); Also great Lifestation At Home An at-home medical alert system Call for help from a room or two in your house with this less-expensive and easier-to-wear system, available in versions that connect to a landline or cell service. $26 from LifeStation If you are with someone whenever you leave your house and have a small living space, or just want protection in one place (like the shower), you might not need a mobile medical alert like our pick. An at-home medical alert is less expensive with a less bulky button to carry, but the range is very limited. Most at-home systems are similar, but we found the Lifestation At Home to be a little easier to use and less expensive than the competition (month-to-month plans are $30 per month for a device that connects to a landline, and $37 per month for one with cellular service). The major downside of the Lifestation At Home is that you cannot speak directly into the device. If you fall, you can push the button from a few hundred feet away from the base station to dial the call center, but you’ll need to be within shouting distance of the base station to communicate whether you’re in need of 911 help or just want an emergency contact to come help you get up. (If you are unable to speak, or the call center cannot hear you, they will follow a course of action that you specify when you sign up: call a family member, call EMTs, or some combination thereof.) The battery in the wearable button lasts three years, and the base unit plugs into the wall. The button connects to the base via radio signal. Also great Apple Watch Series 3 (aluminum) No call center and no contract Bare-bones emergency features, but the most stylish. $330 from Apple If looks matter to you and you have an iPhone, or if you may have trouble pushing a button in an emergency, consider the Apple Watch Series 3. Though it’s bare-bones in emergency functions, it’s much more discreet to wear than other devices we tested. Because compliance matters more than anything when it comes to these devices, wearability is important. At a one-time cost of a few hundred dollars, the Apple Watch works out to be less expensive than buying a separate medical alert with a monthly bill after about a year of use (not including the cost of iPhone service, which is required for the Apple Watch to place phone calls). A button on the side of the watch allows you to place a call to 911 and can alert your emergency contacts that you placed a call when you are in range of your phone or connected to the same Wi-Fi network, and you can speak directly into the watch. You can also place an ordinary nonemergency call through the watch, either by scrolling through your contacts list or saying, “Hey, Siri, call [contact].” The Apple Watch battery lasts 18 hours with some use (less if you’re using it to make frequent phone calls). In September 2017, Apple announced a version of the watch with LTE, but we recommend the one without cellular connectivity for now. Budget pick Ask My Buddy A bare-bones option for home A voice-controlled app that can give you added peace of mind, but can’t call 911. Buy from Ask My Buddy Amazon Echo Our favorite voice-controlled device It’s relatively easy to set up Ask My Buddy on the Amazon Echo, which can also play music, tell you the weather, and control smart devices. $180 from Amazon Buy from Amazon Buy from Amazon Buy from Amazon If you want an extra layer of security at home and are considering getting a voice-controlled smart-home device anyway, Ask My Buddy is a free service available on the Amazon Echo (here’s our full guide on Amazon’s Alexa devices). If you need help and are in the same room, you can say “Alexa, ask my buddy to send help” and your emergency contacts will get a notification via email, text, or robocall. You can also place a call through the Echo to anyone with an Alexa device, or the app. Of all the medical-alert-capable devices, the Echo plus Ask My Buddy is one of the least expensive and least intrusive options. However, it offers very minimal protection: It can’t travel with you, and it can’t actually call 911 or reach anyone who is constantly available to dial 911 for you if you ask. We wouldn’t rely on any medical alert alone to save us in an emergency where every second counts, anyway, but this one ranks the lowest in terms of how much it can help in a variety of situations. Keep up with everything Wirecutter from your inbox Wirecutter Weekly: New reviews and picks, sent weekly Deals We Love: The best deals we can find, sent daily Please choose a newsletter to subscribe to. Sign up for Wirecutter's Newsletter Subscribe That wasn't a valid email address. Please try again. Feel free to opt out or contact us at any time. Opt out or contact us at any time. Thanks for subscribing! You'll be hearing from us soon. The research Expand all Why you should trust us Who should get this Can I just use a cell phone, a smart watch, or Alexa/Google Voice? How we picked How we tested What medical alerts are like to use and wear Our pick: GreatCall Lively Mobile Flaws but not dealbreakers Also great: Lifestation At Home Also great: Apple Watch Also great: Amazon Echo with Ask My Buddy What to ask in a test call Why we don’t recommend Life Alert The competition Sources Why you should trust us Medical alert systems (sometimes referred to as personal emergency response systems) have been around for decades. Perhaps the most recognizable name brand, Life Alert, with its ear-worm of a slogan “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up,” was founded in the 1980s. To understand how people use medical alerts, I spoke to George Demiris, PhD, a professor in the department of biomedical informatics and medical education at the University of Washington; Marita Kloseck, PhD, director of the Sam Katz Community Health and Aging Research Unit at Western University in Ontario, Canada; and Majd Alwan, senior vice president of technology and executive director of the LeadingAge Center for Aging Services Technologies. I also spoke to experts who help people select medical alerts: Mindy Renfro, who has worked as a physical therapist and is currently a research assistant professor at the Rural Institute On Disabilities, part of the University of Montana; Richard Caro, who writes about medical alerts at Tech-enhanced Life; Tony Rovere, chair of the Long Island chapter of the National Aging in Place Council and blogger at StuffSeniorsNeed.com; and Melissa Kantor, the executive director of Long Island at Home, which sells medical alerts and aging-in-place services to local seniors. I fall well below the typical age at which people purchase a medical alert, so I approached the research as though I were selecting one for a loved one to use. According to experts, I’m not far off from a typical customer: Many medical alerts are purchased by adult children looking for ways to better support a parent who is aging in place. I spent weeks trying out the devices for myself. I also consulted a family member who already uses one, my great-aunt Kay. Who should get this Pull QuoteOut of the 30 medical alert users in Ontario, Canada, that Kloseck and her colleagues spoke to, 90 percent agreed that the devices helped them maintain their independence. My great-aunt Kay lives alone in Erie, Pennsylvania, near the farm where she and my grandma grew up. She’s had a couple nasty falls in the past five years, but she doesn’t want to live in a nursing home. She prefers her own house and her daily routines. But she wants to know that if she needs to, she’ll be able to call for help quickly. Her medical alert device helps her maintain an independent lifestyle, as it does for many. “I dread just being an ill person who can’t cope with daily looking after yourself,” said one participant in the focus groups researcher Marita Kloseck conducted on what it’s like to live with a medical alert. “The last thing I want to do is lose my independence and be an invalid, it’s my biggest fear.” If you’re living independently and at risk for falling or another medical emergency, a medical alert is one safety measure to consider. Out of the 30 medical alert users in Ontario, Canada, that Kloseck and her colleagues spoke to, 90 percent agreed that the devices helped them maintain their independence. Though many people, like Aunt Kay, turn to medical alert systems after they’ve had a scary incident, the best time to get one is before you need it. If you are having trouble standing up to get out of a chair, said Renfro, it’s a good time to consider one—especially if you live somewhere where neighbors are few and far between, as is the case in Montana, where Renfro works. It’s not just for falls. One interviewee in Kloseck’s focus group reported successfully contacting EMTs via a medical alert after indigestion-like pain for over a day. “I think they must have flew here!” Another said she liked having a medical alert in case someone suspicious showed up at the door. A medical alert might simply relieve anxiety about emergencies. “You hear about people who fall and then can’t get help and they lay there for sometimes hours, but it just scares you when you think that could happen,” noted one participant in Kloseck’s survey on what motivated her to get a medical alert. “Subscribers reported feeling a sense of security or peace of mind,” Kloseck writes. As Aunt Kay puts it: “I feel protected.” Pull QuoteYou should get a medical alert only if you’re committed to wearing and using it. A medical alert should be just one line of defense against any medical emergency, along with working with a physician or physical therapist to monitor or improve your health and eliminating any hazards around the house, said Alwan. No devices we tested worked perfectly, and no medical alert will undo the damage of a fall (or anything else). Though all experts I spoke to agreed that medical alert systems made you safer, it’s hard to tell by how much. Studies suggest that these systems can reduce the amount of time spent on the floor after a fall, but there’s nothing conclusive in the way of peer-reviewed work showing how many lives they save per year. (In fact, experts I spoke to mostly said that their own parents didn’t have medical alerts, preferring to rely instead on check-ins with a friend or neighbor). You should get a medical alert only if you’re committed to wearing and using it. “I don’t even move without it,” Aunt Kay said. It doesn’t do any good sitting atop your dresser, or if you don’t feel comfortable pushing the button in an emergency. They make poor surprise gifts, says Renfro. If you’d like to foot the bill for a device for a loved one, make sure it’s something they want, and involve them in the process of picking it out. Can I just use a cell phone, a smart watch, or Alexa/Google Voice? Today, many of us already carry around a emergency help button: our cell phones. In fact, for some, the ability to dial 911 is the main appeal of having a wireless device at all, according to the Federal Communications Commission. If you’re in the habit of carrying around a phone constantly, it might be a good alternative to a medical alert. There are a few downsides: Most important, your phone might not be water-resistant, or at least might be awkward to take in the shower and hard to reach if you slip. It doesn’t have an option for automatic fall detection, which some medical alerts do. In a nonemergency it can’t reach a call center, so you’ll have to dial family until someone picks up. And it’s not set up by default to automatically share your location, as many medical alerts will with the call center agent. A phone’s battery also doesn’t last as long as a medical alert system’s, if you’re using it to do other things. However, if you know you’ll have trouble remembering to wear a medical alert, or can’t afford $20+ per month, committing to keeping your phone on you at all times is better than nothing. Some companies have apps that provide access to a call center just like medical alerts do, at about a third of the price of a monthly medical alert subscription. However, some can be confusing to use, slow to load, and even sometimes freeze, according to Caro, who tested out three of the apps. They’re also stuck behind a lock screen. There are a few devices that offer medical-alert-like features that are not technically medical alerts, including the Apple Watch and other smart watches, Amazon Alexa devices, and Google Home. Though these devices can offer emergency features, none will be as reliable as a device that has the sole purpose of reaching help. If you know you won’t wear a traditional medical alert, these are better than nothing. How we picked There’s a medical alert for every lifestyle. The most important feature of a medical alert system is that it’s something you are willing to use. Not even the most reliable device will be of use if it’s stashed in a drawer. Comfort and stylishness tended to decrease with range, I found. (A notable exception to this was the Apple Watch, which was the most comfortable and stylish of the bunch, and can go anywhere as long as your iPhone goes too.) We ended up testing a wide range of devices that covered all the possible configurations, but here’s how to figure out which kind works best for you. (Finding a device that you like might involve some trial and error: it took Aunt Kay two tries to find a medical alert that works well for her needs, and some time after that to figure out how to wear the device in a way that’s comfortable.) If you have a living space that’s bigger than a couple rooms, or if you leave your house alone, a mobile medical alert, which can go anywhere there’s a cell signal, will work best to keep you safe. They consist of a unit a little smaller than a deck of cards that you wear around your neck or on a belt clip that houses a GPS system, a speaker, and a microphone. The button calls someone directly from the device, and you speak to them through the unit. The button on most mobile medical alerts dials a call center (though our favorite can also reach 911). Agents are available 24/7, and pick up anywhere between 15 seconds and two minutes after you press the button. They can send 911 to your house, call a friend or family member on your behalf, or simply keep you company while you troubleshoot the situation yourself. They typically have a $20 to $70 monthly fee that includes the cost of the service and the device. (There’s often an activation or equipment fee, too.) Mobile medical alerts work off mobile carriers (e.g., AT&T, Verizon), so you’ll need to check the coverage in your area before making a purchase. They also need to be charged daily, or every few days, depending on the model. If you don’t want to call 911 directly in a minor emergency or if you slip in the shower while you’re naked, mobile medical alerts offer a way to get a variety of help, via a call center. The call center employees are there 24/7, unlike family members who will inevitably be sleeping, in work meetings, or on vacation sometimes. Further, mobile systems that connect to a call center almost always come with an option for automatic fall detection for about $10 extra per month (if you don’t like it, you can turn it off). When the device senses a change in vertical acceleration, it calls for help. If you are totally knocked out, the operator will attempt to figure out your location via the GPS signal from the device. Fall detection is a great idea, in theory, said experts. In practice, it’s prone to registering false positives, or failing to detect actual falls. “It can be embarrassing, it can [disrupt] activities, it can be costly,” said Demiris. (Part of the problem: Stunt actors falling accidentally on purpose are often used to calibrate fall detection.) Even if the device does successfully make a call after you’ve slipped, if you’ve been knocked unconscious, the operator at the call center could still have trouble figuring out where to send help. Most mobile systems have built-in GPS, but the little dot that shows operators where you are is subject to drift around. (Have you ever opened Google Maps on your phone and had the blue dot appear somewhere you aren’t? That’s it.) There are technical improvements that can be made on bare-bones GPS—like a device that checks in with Wi-Fi signals, when possible—but no device will always pinpoint your location accurately. At-home medical alerts are devices that are for use just at home, with a base station that can be connected to cell service or a landline. With just a few exceptions, these consist of a small, light button that can be worn on your wrist or around your neck. Push the button within about 600 feet of the base station (they’re connected via a radio signal), and you can speak to an operator through the base, which looks kind of like an answering machine. These medical alert systems tend to have lower monthly costs, and a device that’s far less bulky and annoying to wear (it’s about the weight and diameter of a quarter). There’s nothing to remember to charge, either. But the limited range can be frustrating, according to participants in a survey conducted by researchers at Jönköping University in Sweden, not just because it limits movement. “In particular, they felt that the lack of new technical innovations in the alarm system, such as the inclusion of a global positioning system (GPS), was a clear indication that their needs were not considered priorities in society,” the researchers write. A homebound system can make you feel homebound, which isn’t useful for people who want to be active outside of the house. Some companies offer affordable devices that can be used to call a loved one or even 911 directly. They do not reach call centers or have their own cell service (the two features are typically paired). These are less expensive because they lack a monthly service fee; rather, they rely on Wi-Fi, a smartphone, or a landline. They range from specialized medical alerts to the Apple Watch. No matter what style of medical alert you want—mobile or traditional, with a call center or not—you have a few options for how you’ll wear the device. Medical alerts can hang around your neck or wrist, or clip to your belt; for any particular device, there are often at least two options. What works best is largely personal preference, though Demiris notes that a device worn around your neck can be easier to make a habit of wearing if you’re used to putting on jewelry in the morning (it’s also necessary if you are using automatic fall detection). Battery life varies broadly for medical alerts, anywhere from just a day to a week. Experts advised getting in the habit of charging the device every night, so we didn’t prioritize long battery life. There’s typically no volume control on medical alert systems, which are about as loud as a cell phone at top volume and on speaker. The advantage is that there’s no way to accidentally turn the volume down. However, if you’re hard of hearing, volume could potentially be an issue. We looked only at devices that came with the option to make monthly payments or required no payments at all, and we discarded any that require you to have an annual contract for the service on the advice of Tony Revere, who blogs at StuffSeniorsNeed.com. You should be able to send the device back without breaking a contract if you try a particular one and realize it—or the whole concept—just isn’t for you. There are various certifications that medical alert equipment and call center equipment can have to make sure they’re up to certain safety standards. For example, companies can pay Underwriter Laboratories to verify their device has certain features. Experts we spoke to disagreed on the level of importance of these certifications, but no one thought that it was a dealbreaker to not have one. And because we did our own testing, we were able to learn firsthand if a system was reliable. Some companies will advertise that their call center is based in the US. Caro, who writes about how to pick a medical alert on Tech-enhanced Life and logged many hours himself testing medical alerts, pointed out to me that all the call centers he’s encountered sounded like they were based in the States. How we tested It’s hard to tell a lot about how easy, effective, and comfortable a medical alert is from descriptions online or from people who may have only used one on their own with no point of comparison, so we decided to try the devices ourselves. I spent several weeks integrating the devices into my life, and then pushing their limits as much as possible. I went through the setup process for each device, which ranged from placing the device in a charging cradle (which all mobile medical alerts use) and following a few verbal instructions, to leafing through a fine-print manual. One device required a traditional landline; I trekked to a coworker’s parents’ apartment on the Upper West Side to use one after it wasn’t compatible with our VoIP system at work. I used each medical alert for at least a day, wearing the mobile medical alerts to work and out with friends, making test calls in all manner of locations. For a while in February, my outfit was consistently punctuated by a low-hanging, blinking device, my kitchen counter and bedside table littered with in-home devices and charging cradles. I made several test calls with each device and compared both response time and the quality of customer service. We prioritized devices that could be worn a variety of ways and made accommodations for people without fine motor skills, like a lanyard with a magnetic clasp that doesn’t need to be looped over a head. Some devices require dexterity not everyone has, like pushing a lanyard through a small hole, or attaching them to a belt clip. What medical alerts are like to use and wear When I wore the Medical Guardian Premium Guardian, a former runner-up pick, out one night with my coworkers, the diamond indicator light blinked red as I ate my food. In the course of chatting about work, I mentioned that I was trying out medical alerts. “Oh that’s what that thing is,” one coworker said. “I thought maybe you had an allergy.” While I was getting used to having a medical alert on me, they still read as a medical device and a little bit strange to the outside world. I was surprised and delighted to learn during this process that, despite the fact that advertising for these devices seems to prey on our fear of mortality and disaster, I didn’t have to be in a life-or-death situation in order to buzz the call centers. The operators are just as happy to help talk through a situation and provide support from afar, and never seemed to be itching to push me into declaring an emergency. The buttons for in-home medical alerts are all tiny and barely noticeable. Mobile medical alerts were the biggest nuisance to wear, in part because of their size, and in part because they tag along for all manner of social situations. They are heavier and can draw considerable attention. I got in the habit of tucking the medical alerts into my shirt, per Aunt Kay’s advice. Some made their presence known even when they were out of sight, chiming to indicate their charge status when I was in a crowded elevator at work, or even speaking up at inopportune times. One day at work, the Premium Guardian verbally announced to me and everyone in a two-cubicle range that its battery was low. I spent a lot of time doing the dreaded thing—pushing the button to ask for help—just to see what would happen. Some devices made chiming sounds, some vibrated, and some noted that they were dialing the call center. The best medical alerts continuously did something as I waited for someone to pick up, as long spaces of silence would leave me wondering if I had accidentally hung up or lost signal. For medical alerts with call centers, someone typically picked up within 30 seconds. Longer than that felt like an eternity, even from the safety of my desk or bed; I wouldn’t want a loved one waiting that long during an emergency. All call centers say more or less the same line when they pick up: “Hello, do you need help?” I usually said no, I was just placing a test call. In one instance, curious if the call center would be willing to help out in a truly minor situation, I asked the operator to call my boyfriend to tell him I was running late to meet him. The operator was happy to oblige. Voice-controlled units like the Amazon Echo don’t require you to wear anything, but work reliably only when you’re in the same room. I set up the Echo in my kitchen, and when the dishwasher was running, even when I was screaming “Hey, Alexa!”—the signal that you’re about to give the device a command—over and over from a room away, it could not hear me. (This is also a pitfall of relying on a device to play music and be able to hear you in an emergency.) I had similar experiences with traditional in-home medical alerts. The range on these devices is technically several hundred feet from the base station, and though the call center operators could hear me yelling from a room away, they had trouble understanding me. (I just moved closer to the base station, but in the event that you fall and they can’t hear you, they’ll follow a preplanned course of action that you decide when you sign up, like calling a family member and then EMTs.) Services that try to use both the button and a base station to communicate were suboptimal. In the case of one hybrid mobile and home device, an operator first tries to talk to you via a stationary home box, and then switches to the wearable if you don’t respond there. After pushing the button at work, I sat in an empty conference room for a full two minutes while, presumably, someone first tried asking my empty apartment if anyone needed help before switching over to the speaker around my neck. During test calls, I asked operators to identify my location. No GPS was consistently accurate, though they were often correct within a couple blocks. This makes backup measures attractive, like the GreatCall Lively Mobile’s Web interface where you can log your typical schedule. Sometimes the GPS was way off. Once, while testing the Bay Alarm Medical GPS Alert System, an operator said that I was at the New York Times building in midtown where the device had lost power, when in fact I’d gone home to Brooklyn. The device lost power downtown, and had only just been recharged when I placed the test call; I suspect that it hadn’t been on long enough to update its location. On another occasion, the GPS on a device wasn’t working at all, and took two phone calls to customer service to fix. I found that operators were rarely able to troubleshoot problems with the device or answer questions about service. Though call center employees were willing and able to help with even minor incidents, they weren’t inclined to make small talk. Once, after noting my location an operator did exclaim that she used to live on my street, and we had a short conversation about the rising rents in Brooklyn. But with few exceptions, the call center people hung up quickly after addressing my requests. Despite being vaguely worried when I started this project about accidentally having EMTs show up at my house, I never once pushed the button on a medical alert unintentionally during testing, including a few occasions when I just threw them in my purse. If you do accidentally hit the button, chances are you will be connected to a call center, and you can just clarify what happened with an operator. (Medical alerts make noise when they are placing a call, so a butt-dial will not go unnoticed.) Most medical alerts do not call 911 directly, and those that do require a more deliberate, prolonged push to reach emergency services. At first I skipped providing my emergency contacts, in part because I didn’t expect to be in immediate danger, but also because it was such an easy step to overlook. In all but one case, it was possible to get through the activation process without providing them, which you typically have to do over email, fax, or via snail mail to ensure that the contact information is entered correctly. Only one model, the GreatCall Lively Mobile, allowed you to enter them in an online interface. Our pick: GreatCall Lively Mobile The GreatCall Lively Mobile is intuitive to use, and has a plain design that won’t draw too much attention. Our pick GreatCall Lively Mobile The best medical alert system Our favorite medical alert system is comfortable to wear around your neck or on a belt clip. We found that the call center picks up faster than the competition, typically 15 seconds after you push the button. $40 from GreatCall $34 from Walmart The GreatCall Lively Mobile was one of the easiest mobile medical alerts to wear and use, and costs less than any other medical alert of its kind that we considered, with service starting at $20 per month, with one-time fees totaling $80. The rectangular silver and black (or gold and black) design draws minimal attention, and the call center consistently picks up quickly—up to eight times as fast as others. The battery life is 24 hours, according to the company, among the the shortest we considered, though I found it lasted nearly twice that long with minimal use. The device is a little smaller and lighter than a deck of cards. One big button in the middle dials the call center or—if you hold it down—911. A small button on the back turns it on and off. A small battery-indicator light changes colors when the Lively is low on charge, but it doesn’t draw a ton of attention to itself. When the Lively shuts off from low battery, it announces that it’s doing so. (It was loud enough to wake me up at 4 a.m. one day, a good feature if you’ve forgotten to charge it and have missed the battery light.) The Lively Mobile can go anywhere there’s Verizon cell service, including your shower, as it’s waterproof. In separate tests, we’ve found Verizon to be the most reliable network, though it doesn’t cover every part of the country. Check here to see if your area is covered. The Lively Mobile is one of the only medical alerts we looked at that has the option to call either a call center, or—by holding down the button—911 directly. The speaker and microphone in the device provide sound quality that’s better than that of many other devices we considered. If you dial an agent from the Lively, they’ll typically pick up about 15 seconds after you push the button; other devices left us hanging for what felt like forever. If you are lost, or unable to speak, the agent can look at a GPS signal and a list of places you frequent to help identify your location. The Lively Mobile is the only device that has an easy-to-use online interface where you can store emergency contact information. With all other devices, you have to email or snail mail your emergency contact information (this ensures accuracy compared with speaking the information over the phone). GreatCall offers the most affordable basic service packages of all the mobile medical alerts we tested, at $20. Fall detection costs an extra $15. GreatCall also has a middle tier, for $25, with access to doctors via the device (though they emphasize that this feature should not be used in an emergency), and allows family and friends to tell when you leave home or return via the GreatCall Link app. The first tier of service should work well for most people, though if the idea of being able to loosely track a loved one’s movements appeals to you, or if you want the extra security of (somewhat unreliable) fall detection, consider upgrading. The Lively Mobile has a separate on-off button, which means it’s impossible to accidentally turn it off when you’re calling for help. The lanyard is soft and black, shorter than those of much of the competition, and has a magnetic clasp so you don’t need to be able to lift your arms above your head to put it on or mess with a complicated closure. (There’s also an option to wear the device on a belt clip). The instruction booklet for the Lively Mobile is easy to read. This is a small point, but it was much better than the thick, tiny-print instruction books that some of the competition had. GreatCall has been around since 2006—the company is best known for making Jitterbug flip phones—and debuted the Lively Mobile in mid-2016. The device is an upgraded version of GreatCall’s previous mobile medical alert, the Splash, which garnered positive reviews. Medical alert reviewer Caro praised the Splash for the call center’s fast response time, ability to call 911 directly, and easy online interface, all qualities that the Lively shares. Flaws but not dealbreakers No medical alert is actively enjoyable to wear, and the Lively Mobile is no exception. It will likely take some time to get used to having the device around your neck. On the Lively, a white light flashes consistently to indicate that it’s in an area with service. Though this was less intrusive than the more colorful lights on some other devices, it could still be annoying; there were no mobile medical alerts without lights. The length of the Lively Mobile’s lanyard is not adjustable. Though I found the relatively short lanyard to be easier to wear than the competition’s, this might not be the case for everyone. Even though the lanyard can be easily swapped out, most traditional lanyards (which have a clasp that attaches to a badge) will be a little awkward. If you want a different lanyard with a specific length, you’ll need a little DIY savvy. If your area is not covered by Verizon, the Lively Mobile won’t work for you. Check your coverage here. Another flaw that all medical alerts share: the GPS signal can be unreliable. However, the Lively helps skirt this by prompting you to enter information into an online database (from a computer or a smartphone app) about your schedule and where you go during your days so the call center staff have something to fall back on. It’s the only medical alert that has this feature. Of all the medical alerts we tested, the Lively Mobile has one of the shortest advertised battery lives: 24 hours, as opposed to 36 hours or even several days. I found the battery lasted over 50 hours with minimal use, though I wouldn’t want a loved one counting on it working for that long on a single charge. Experts recommend getting in the habit of charging your medical alert nightly, so that you don’t have to think about it. If this will be hard for you, consider an in-home medical alert, which doesn’t need to be charged. Also great: Lifestation At Home The LifeStation At Home system has a small button and a base station. Also great Lifestation At Home An at-home medical alert system Call for help from a room or two in your house with this less-expensive and easier-to-wear system, available in versions that connect to a landline or cell service. $26 from LifeStation If you just need a medical alert to cover you in a couple rooms of your house, consider the Life Station At Home system, which is about $30 per month (there’s no activation fee). Like all in-home medical alert systems, it consists of a small button that you can wear around your neck or on your wrist that wirelessly connects to an answering-machine-like base station that lets you speak to a call center agent (there’s no option to dial 911 directly). Though it can’t leave your house, and you can’t speak through the button, it’s easier to wear than our top picks. There’s no charging required; the button’s battery lasts about three years. Home medical alert systems are all very similar, but Life Station’s is a little less expensive than other options we looked at, and didn’t give us any trouble during testing. The main perk of an at-home system is that the device is much easier to wear than those in mobile systems: The Life Station button is about the weight and diameter of a quarter, and just a little thicker. In comparison, our main pick and runner-up are just a little smaller and lighter than a deck of cards. If you don’t need a medical alert that you can leave the house with, are mostly concerned about slipping in one room—the bathroom, for example—or know that you just won’t wear anything but the least-intrusive device, the Life Station At Home might be a good option. The major downside of this or any at-home system is that its range is incredibly limited, even if you’re just using it in your home. The range of this device is several hundred feet—that is, the button can still communicate with the base station if you are on the other side of a small house. Though it’s difficult to communicate through the base station if you’re even one room away, you can choose at the time of setup what course of action the call center should take if you push the button and they don’t hear anything. Also great: Apple Watch A medical ID screen has a few details for paramedics. Apple Watch can dial 911 at the push of a button. The Emergency SOS feature dials 911 and texts your emergency contacts. Press the button on the right once to get this screen, or hold down to activate the SOS feature immediately. A medical ID screen has a few details for paramedics. Apple Watch can dial 911 at the push of a button. 1 of 3 Also great Apple Watch Series 3 (aluminum) No call center and no contract Bare-bones emergency features, but the most stylish. $330 from Apple Apple Watch Series 3 has basic emergency functions compared with most medical alerts we looked at, and requires a little tech savvy to use. Out of everything we tested, it’s the only wearable device that’s stylish and doesn’t look at all like a medical device. (We tested the Series 2 but it is no longer available). You will need to have an iPhone for the watch to work, but if you’re already paying for that service and you are comfortable with navigating Apple services, the watch may be relatively affordable—it currently costs $330, which will buy you less than 10 months of service with a typical mobile medical alert. (We recommend the version without cellular service; more on that in a minute.) The SOS feature (which was introduced on the Series 2 model) allows users to dial 911 by pushing and holding down the button on the side of the watch, and can automatically text up to three emergency contacts and give them your location when you do so. Apple Watch hasn’t had emergency features long enough for our experts to evaluate its usefulness as a medical alert, though they agreed it could be useful. Apple Watch’s battery lasts 18 hours with some use. You can speak to a 911 responder directly through the watch, or if it’s a nonemergency, you can dial a friend or family member through the watch verbally, by saying (for example), “Siri, call [name].” The sound quality of Apple Watch is better than any medical alert we considered. There are a variety of bands to choose from (some costing hundreds of dollars themselves, like a Hermes band), making Apple Watch Series 2 the most customizable of all the devices we looked at. Aside from the limited functionality, the major downside of Apple Watch is that you have to be within Bluetooth range or connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your phone for it to place a call. This means that you can’t necessarily just set your phone down in your house, wander away from it, and know that your Apple Watch is going to keep you safe in the event of an emergency (one of the key advantages of a true mobile medical alert system). There is an LTE version of the Series 3 that allows you to place calls without being in range of your phone, but we can’t recommend it. Preliminary reviews have noted connectivity and battery issues with the LTE version, plus you’ll need to pay about $10 a month for the Watch to have its own service. We plan to test the service for ourselves, and we’ll keep an eye out for improvements. I found that navigating the tiny screen on the watch could be challenging, though this was mostly an issue for using functions other than the SOS feature. (However, if you buy Apple Watch, you’ll likely want it to work for other things, too.) If you find yourself fairly comfortable with most Apple devices, and okay with the size of newspaper print (the font can be enlarged on some apps, like text messaging, but not all), scrolling through apps on your wrist shouldn’t be too much of an adjustment. Also great: Amazon Echo with Ask My Buddy At your verbal request, the Amazon Echo can send an alert to loved ones. Budget pick Ask My Buddy A bare-bones option for home A voice-controlled app that can give you added peace of mind, but can’t call 911. Buy from Ask My Buddy Amazon Echo Our favorite voice-controlled device It’s relatively easy to set up Ask My Buddy on the Amazon Echo, which can also play music, tell you the weather, and control smart devices. $180 from Amazon Buy from Amazon Buy from Amazon Buy from Amazon If you don’t carry your phone around in your home, won’t remember or want to wear even a small button, would have trouble using a button in an emergency but can vocalize and enunciate pretty clearly, or just want another layer of security, consider using Ask My Buddy paired with the Amazon Echo (you’ll need to have a smartphone or tablet to use it). When you say, “Alexa, ask my buddy for help” the service will send a text, email, and phone call to a list of contacts to let them know they should check in. You can also place a phone call through the Echo to anyone who has the free Amazon Alexa app on their phone. Though the Echo may be the easiest and least expensive device to fit into your lifestyle, this setup would not be helpful at all in emergencies, and only marginally helpful in nonemergencies. Still, it would be better than nothing. Pull Quote I wouldn’t want a loved one of mine counting on any medical alert alone to keep them safe, but especially not the Echo. There’s nothing to remember to wear or charge, and the device doesn’t look anything like a medical device because it’s not. You’ll get all the other capabilities of the Echo (here’s our full guide), and at $180, it costs less than four months’ worth of service with a traditional medical alert company. Unlike other services, this one can’t connect you to 911 directly or via a call center or confirm that someone received your request. The range is small; the feature works reliably only if you’re in the same room as the Echo (that said, multiple Echos or Echo Dots can all be linked together to cover many rooms or a larger home). As such, Ask My Buddy should be treated only as an additional tool for a little added peace of mind in addition to thoughtful design of a home around the person using it. I wouldn’t want a loved one of mine counting on any medical alert alone to keep them safe, but especially not the Echo. We think that the Echo will be the best device to pair with Ask My Buddy for most people, though it also works with other Amazon Alexa devices and Google Home (our full guide). The Echo indicates that it heard you with a ring of light at the top of the device, and it’s taller than Google Home (which has a slanted face with indicator lights) and other Alexa options, making it easier to see from across the room. Ask My Buddy was a little easier to set up and use on the Echo than on Google Home (you’ll still need a little app savvy, or have someone around who does, as you’ll need to connect the device to a smartphone and Wi-Fi). The range on any voice-controlled device is smaller than that of a home medical alert system with a base station. When I tried screaming “Hey, Alexa” over and over from a room away while the dishwasher was running, it didn’t pick up my voice. The sound quality on either end of the phone call placed through the Alexa wasn’t as good as it is on a traditional medical alert device. Though you may run into range problems with a home medical alert with a base station, it’s easier to get someone on the line (you just push a button), at which point, they’d at least know that you needed help even if you were unable to communicate; the same can’t be said of a call that’s not picked up or a text that goes unseen. Another concern we have about Ask My Buddy: It’s a free app run by volunteers. There’s no guarantee that it’s sticking around, and you can’t contact people otherwise through an Echo. There’s an email to send issues and questions to, but you can’t get in touch with a representative right away if you run into a problem with its service. Amazon does have a customer service line to help with Echo setup. Amazon’s Echo Connect, launched in September 2017, is the first Echo device with phone calling capabilities (rather than just Echo-to-Echo intercom communication). You can use it to call any landline, including 911 calls. It also has built-in speakerphone and caller ID features. We are looking into the possibility of using the Echo Connect as a medical alert system, and if we think it’s a better option than an Echo paired with Ask My Buddy we’ll update this section with our thoughts. What to ask in a test call For medical alerts that come with a monitoring service, experts recommend pushing the button on your medical alert at least once a month to confirm that it’s working well. This step is especially important when you first start using your medical alert. Pushing the button should feel like second nature during a true emergency. One participant in the University of Western Ontario focus group recalled forgetting about the device during a heart attack: “The button didn’t even come into my mind. All I knew I was in trouble.” Plus, you need to make sure that the device works the way you think it does. Aunt Kay fell outside her house, and, thinking she had a mobile system, pushed the button to call for help to no avail. Though she was able to crawl to her car to retrieve her cell phone, the incident left her and our family shaken. It’s scary to find out you don’t have help at the ready when you think you do. Through expert advice, and some trial and error, I learned that there are a few things that I’d want my loved ones doing during a test call to ensure that their device is working properly. Confirm that the company has your correct home address on file. In particular, if the device was shipped to another location, this could be wrong—and cause problems if you fall and say you’re at home. Ask the operator if they can tell you where you are right now. If they are off by more than a block, call customer service. In one case during my tests, the GPS wasn’t working at all, a problem that might not have come to light if I hadn’t asked about it. Again, in another case, when I called from my home in Brooklyn, the operator informed me that I was at the New York Times Building, in midtown Manhattan. If you think you have automatic fall detection, confirm that this is the case with the operator. Many devices will announce that they are activating automatic fall detection when you first plug them in, even if this feature isn’t something you are paying for and therefore won’t be able to use. If you do have automatic fall detection, do a test fall by dropping the device on the ground. I also learned that the agents at the call center are typically not able to help you troubleshoot any issues that the device itself is having. If you learn during a test call that anything is amiss, you’ll need to hang up and call customer service. Why we don’t recommend Life Alert We quickly eliminated Life Alert—the brand so ubiquitous it’s name is often used to describe medical alerts in general—from the running. The company requires users to sign a 36-month contract that can be broken only if you go into 24/7 care or die. That’s a dealbreaker because it’s hard to know if a particular medical alert (or any medical alert at all) is something you’ll use until you try it out. The ability to cancel your service with minimal penalties is key to a good medical alert. Beyond that, Life Alert’s marketing is aggressive, making perusing its products annoying at best. There are outsized claims about its products’ lifesaving abilities on the website, but minimal information on the devices themselves. When I called the customer service line for more information, a representative immediately asked for my address. As I asked questions about the service, a rep encouraged me to give my mom “the gift of life”—meaning its product—for Mother’s Day. The competition Our former runner-up pick, the Medical Guardian Premium Guardian, is no longer available. Medical Guardian now offers a different device, the Active Guardian instead. We tried this device, and don’t like it enough to recommend it as a pick, though if you don’t care about looks and are better covered in your area by AT&T service (as opposed to Verizon) it’s a fine choice.


    2. Pushing the button should feel like second nature during a true emergency. One participant in the University of Western Ontario focus group recalled forgetting about the device during a heart attack: “The button didn’t even come into my mind. All I knew I was in trouble.”


    3. Sometimes the GPS was way off.


    4. Services that try to use both the button and a base station to communicate were suboptimal. In the case of one hybrid mobile and home device, an operator first tries to talk to you via a stationary home box, and then switches to the wearable if you don’t respond there. After pushing the button at work, I sat in an empty conference room for a full two minutes while, presumably, someone first tried asking my empty apartment if anyone needed help before switching over to the speaker around my neck.


    5. Mobile medical alerts were the biggest nuisance to wear, in part because of their size, and in part because they tag along for all manner of social situations. They are heavier and can draw considerable attention. I got in the habit of tucking the medical alerts into my shirt, per Aunt Kay’s advice. Some made their presence known even when they were out of sight, chiming to indicate their charge status when I was in a crowded elevator at work, or even speaking up at inopportune times. One day at work, the Premium Guardian verbally announced to me and everyone in a two-cubicle range that its battery was low.


    6. While I was getting used to having a medical alert on me, they still read as a medical device and a little bit strange to the outside world.


    7. It’s hard to tell a lot about how easy, effective, and comfortable a medical alert is from descriptions online or from people who may have only used one on their own with no point of comparison, so we decided to try the devices ourselves. I spent several weeks integrating the devices into my life, and then pushing their limits as much as possible.

      yes, it's hard to know the quality from just reading reviews

    8. The water-resistant GreatCall Lively Mobile can dial a call center or 911 directly (the ability to do both is a rare feature) from anywhere, and it’s easier to wear than the competition: It can go on a lanyard (with a magnetic clasp) that’s long enough to slide over your head, or on a belt clip. The silver box and plain white indicator light are more understated than the competition, and GreatCall offers the lowest-cost month-to-month plan of anything we looked at. The battery lasts 24 hours, according to GreatCall, though we found it could go up to 50 hours with minimal use. The advertised battery life is on the low end of the models we tested, but our experts recommended getting in the habit of charging your medical alert every day anyway. The GreatCall Lively Mobile works anywhere there’s Verizon cell service, which we’ve found to be the most reliable network.

      summary of the qualities of GreatCall Lively Mobile

    1. Hack Day: Fri 8 June

      While sitting here at Fort Mason at the iannotate Hack Day 2018, I am reminding myself how to use the hypothes.is api.

    1. Patti Owen Patti started working on the Berkeley campus in 1975 while her husband pursued his PhD. Her first position was in the Academic Personnel Office, where she worked for 3 ½ years. She followed her husband to Paris while he did his doctoral research. Upon her return she worked in the Engineering Dean's Office for 10 years and at UC Office of the President for almost 5 years. She returned to campus in 1993 to serve as head of the Academic Personnel Office. At the time of retirement in 2009, she was the Assistant Vice Provost for Academic Personnel.She enjoys traveling with her husband, especially to France where she spent her junior year abroad. She is an avid quilter and serves as a volunteer for Stitchin' for Kids. She currently serves as Chair of the Retirement Center Advisory Board.

      Patti Owen was the head of APO when I worked on Biobibs.

  41. Apr 2018
    1. On or before May 6, cast your vote in the Narthex for ONE book that you hope to read over the summer by placing a marble in the jar for the book of your choice. The Adult Formation Committee will tally the votes on May 14th and announce them in the Pathfinder and at the services that Sunday.

      timing for vote

    1. Upgrade pick Dell P2415Q A great 4K 24-inch monitor If you want a 24-inch monitor to edit 4K photos and video at their native resolution, or to watch higher-resolution television and movies, the Dell P2415Q is a solid choice. $430* from Dell $460 from Walmart $627 from Amazon €434 from Amazon ¥3,336 from Amazon €436 from Amazon €436 from Amazon £367 from Amazon INR 43,039.00 from Amazon €385 from Amazon ¥55,300 from Amazon *At the time of publishing, the price was $460. If you want a 4K monitor, we recommend the Dell P2415Q. Although it typically costs around $100 more than our top pick, the P2415Q has an extremely accurate 3840×2160-pixel IPS display, which means that it can show sharper, more detailed images than our 1920×1200 recommendations when connected to a computer that supports the resolution. The P2415Q has HDMI and DisplayPort connections plus four USB 3.0 ports—one fewer than the Dell U2415. Its stand is just as adjustable as our main pick’s, but the thicker bezel around its screen makes it look chunky by comparison. It comes with the same dead-pixel policy and warranty as the U2415.

      4K upgrade pick

  42. Mar 2018
    1. What does Zuckerberg know about user's privacy. He does not believe in the concept[1][2].I remember when this chart[3] first made the rounds. If this didn't convince people that facebook is evil. I don't know what will[1] https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2010/jan/11/facebook-...[2] https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/21/facebook-ceo-mark-zuckerberg...[3] http://mattmckeon.com/facebook-privacy/

      Striking comment about how Mark Zuckerberg has had such a terrible record on privacy. Why believe him now?

  43. Feb 2018
    1. How to submit a package to PyPI

      The new PyPI repo has made some of the instructions in this handy tutorial out-of-date. See Migrating to PyPI.org — Python Packaging User Guide

    1. With our page(s) selected, we need to copy them to the clipboard, either by selecting Edit > Copy from the Menu Bar, or by using the keyboard shortcut Command-C. Next, we’ll tell Preview to make a new PDF document from the page(s) we just copied, which can be accomplished by selecting File > New From Clipboard in the Menu Bar or by using the keyboard shortcut Command-N.

      How to create a new PDF from copied extracts from old PDF using macOS Preview

    1. SUMMER BOOK NOMINATIONS Nominate a book for our parish-wide summer book group! Find the nomination slips and the jar on the Cedar side counter in the Narthex, and in the chapel (for the 7:30 service goers).

      Time to nominate a book for the summer reading group at All Souls Parish.

    1. There are two ways to expand any window on your Mac. One trick, which came around when OS X Yosemite did, is to Option-Click the green button itself. That’s all well and good, but it does require a little extra thinking, and if you accidentally hit the green button without the Option key, you’ll get a full screen window. Not good. The best way, in my opinion, to zoom your windows out to fit the size of the content within them is to double click on the title bar.

      How to zoom out window on macOS

    1. First, as mass immigration increases diversity, it reduces social cohesion and civic trust. This is not a universal law, as the economics writer Noah Smith has pointed out; there are counter-examples and ways to resist the trend. However, it is a finding that strongly comports with the real-world experience of Europe and America, where as cultural diversity has increased so has social distrust, elite-populist conflict, and the racial, religious and generational polarization of political parties.

      confusing causation with correlation

    1. On March 22, 2017, during the House Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections, Nunes held a press conference to announce that he had received information that communications of members of Trump's transition team had been "incidentally collected" by the intelligence community. The communications had been obtained legally during foreign intelligence surveillance, but were not related to Russia. He added that the information was "widely disseminated" in the intelligence community, and later clarified that Trump associates were not necessarily participants in the intercepted conversations.[62] Nunes was widely criticized for sharing this information with the media and the president before briefing his colleagues on the committee.[63] According to Nunes, the intercepted communications came in November, December and January – after Trump won the election but before he was sworn in as president.[64] Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the committee, and House Democratic leadership called on Nunes to recuse himself from the investigation.[6] He also received criticism from Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham.[65] The latter compared Nunes's actions to those of the comically incompetent fictional character Inspector Clouseau.[66]

      Nunes incident from March 2017

    1. Let it Go I don't wanna cry, cry cry cry, oh Come on baby try and let it go, let it go When the time has come for us to part Will you hold my hand? Sorrow dancing circles round my heart Will you understand? I don't wanna cry, cry, cry, cry, oh Come on baby try and let it go, let it go Princes, kings and noble bravery Fairy tears will fall Let me rock you, walk you to the gate Watch you run away

      lyrics for "Let it Go" from the album Echo in the Valley

  44. Jan 2018
    1. Let it Go I don't wanna cry, cry cry cry, oh Come on baby try and let it go, let it go When the time has come for us to part Will you hold my hand? Sorrow dancing circles round my heart Will you understand? I don't wanna cry, cry, cry, cry, oh Come on baby try and let it go, let it go Princes, kings and noble bravery Fairy tears will fall Let me rock you, walk you to the gate Watch you run away

      lyrics for "Let it Go" from the album Echoes in the Valley

    1. Next, we're going to tell Leanpub we want this file in the book. To do this, we add the filename of the new file to the Book.txt file. The Book.txt file is just a list of the files in your book, in the order you want them included.

      Book.txt is the master file for leanpub book generation

    1. Berkeley Location (formerly Alameda County Computer Resource Center) 620 Page St, Berkeley, CA, 94710

      Berkeley location of the CTRC

    1. How do I clean the data off my computer/hard drive? We offer drive wiping service for $10 per drive. Do nothing. This allows us to simply reformat the drive and use it in a rebuilt computer. Format the drive yourself. The disk will remain in working order and we will be able to format it a second time and use it in a rebuilt computer. Pay us to either wipe or degauss your drive. For a fee (see above), we will completely wipe your hard drive and install a fresh operating system, so your hard drive can be reused. If the hard drive cannot be wiped, it will be degaussed. Degaussing a drive renders it useless. After we degauss your hard drive, we cannot use it in a rebuilt computer.

      data wiping/drive degaussing service

    1. If people would do that, people who do not want their local stuff to be publicly available, it just ends it. I mean, you could have all your ports open. You could do anything you wanted, if you simply set TTLs to one. I've never seen it done, and I've never seen it talked about or mentioned.

      Setting TTL to 1s for packets as a way to keep local network activity local is an interesting idea.

    1. Low-cost iPad - Early 2018? In 2017, Apple introduced a new 5th-generation 9.7-inch iPad with the lowest price we've seen yet - $329 for the 32GB model. Though not as thin as the iPad Pro, and missing features like Apple Pencil support and ProMotion display technology, the iPad has an A9 processor and is a capable, powerful device. Rumors suggest Apple could introduce an even lower-cost iPad in 2018, with a price tag that starts at $259. That would allow Apple to better compete in the lower cost tablet market. This rumor comes from DigiTimes, though, a source that's not always entirely reliable, so it's not yet clear if Apple does indeed have an even more affordable iPad in the works. If there is a new iPad coming, it could be introduced in early 2018, a year after the March 2018 debut of the fifth-generation iPad.

      Maybe a low-cost iPad will be coming in early 2018

    1. Sounding the Liturgical Year, with Jamie Apgar Meeting at 10:10 am on January 7, 14, 21, and February 4 Living in that entity called “the West,” we have received from European precedents—often unknowingly—peculiar ways of experiencing and thinking about music. These idealizations can tend not just toward the universal but even toward the socially destructive: music is essentially emotional or more broadly communicative, its own “language,” a domain in which great artists create out of inspiration and ennoble listeners, even facilitate spiritual transcendence, through works of genius. Such notions are variously problematic and contingent, particularly in universalized formulations: mostly unexamined until the ascendance of post-colonial critique were the power imbalances by which the model of the inspired genius or easy equivalences between music and language have served to oppress particular groups. Just as importantly, these ideas have served to occlude other perspectives that support different accounts of the political and cultural work that music performs. Until the last few decades, for instance, the social functions of music lay largely at the periphery of scholarly and popular discourse. This course will seek not so much to tear down the core aesthetics of Western artistic cultures as to contemplate them alongside other modes of engaging music, to situate music within the broader category of sound, and to consider both the benefits and the drawbacks of our many spiritual, social, and sensual experiences of music. It will do so with reference to the principal context in which music is used in the Episcopal Church: the liturgy. Through scripture, historical examples, discussions, and perhaps even a little of our own music-making, we will explore not just what music has done but also what we might think we need it to do.

      I'm looking forward to learning about the role of music from non-Western traditions in liturgy.

    1. Kernel Available for: macOS High Sierra 10.13.1 Impact: An application may be able to read kernel memory (Meltdown) Description: Systems with microprocessors utilizing speculative execution and indirect branch prediction may allow unauthorized disclosure of information to an attacker with local user access via a side-channel analysis of the data cache. CVE-2017-5754: Jann Horn of Google Project Zero; Moritz Lipp of Graz University of Technology; Michael Schwarz of Graz University of Technology; Daniel Gruss of Graz University of Technology; Thomas Prescher of Cyberus Technology GmbH; Werner Haas of Cyberus Technology GmbH; Stefan Mangard of Graz University of Technology; Paul Kocher; Daniel Genkin of University of Pennsylvania and University of Maryland; Yuval Yarom of University of Adelaide and Data61; and Mike Hamburg of Rambus (Cryptography Research Division) Entry updated January 5, 2018

      The apple memo was updated to indicate that the 2017-002 Sierra update does not include a fix for Meltdown. See also https://twitter.com/reneritchie/status/949413107062976512

  45. Nov 2017
    1. Eventbrite Public Dashboard [Diya Das] Eventbrite doesn’t have a public-facing dashboard to share high-level registration/check-in information (for promoting events), but they do have an API. Interested? Add your name here:


    1. Conversations on Gender: Science, Culture, and Incarnation “It’s a girl.”  “It’s a boy.”  From the day we are born, gender is spoken over us.  We sort our diverse bodies into the “female” bin or the “male” bin.  More often, we are sorted.  We are told what it means to be a woman, to be a man.  These names, and all the baggage they carry, follow us from the bathroom to the boardroom, shaping the ways others see us, the ways others treat us, the ways we see ourselves.  We open the Bible, and there we find sex and gender on the very first page: “male and female he created them.”  This thread winds through the pages of Scripture, from the patriarchs and matriarchs to the “her” and “him” of the Song of Solomon to the audacious women and grumbling men of the Gospels.  We hear the meaning of manhood and womanhood not only from friends and family, from TV and movies, but also from the pulpit.  Sex and gender permeate our lives, coloring every aspect.  And yet, we live in a historical moment where we’re increasingly willing to question these categories, to examine this lens through which we’ve seen the world. We at All Souls come from a variety of places when it comes to gender.  Some of us grew up in a world divided into slacks and skirts.  Other of us grew up in beige nurseries with a choice of Tonka Trucks and Barbies.  Some of us find the phrase “male and female” as familiar and reassuring as the night and the day, as the changing of the seasons.  For others, the words “male and female” give us a sinking feeling in our gut, as we wonder where we fit in.  For some of us, gender roles fit like a glove from day one, and have never really felt constricting.  Others of us have had to blaze our own trails, violating societies’ expectations with our gender identities, the genders of partners, our choice of careers, our choice of dress, or even just our personalities.  Many of us across the board have chosen to wear preferred pronouns on our name tags, in recognition that a person’s physical appearance might not tell you everything about their identity. As disciples, we ask the question: what does it mean to follow Jesus in our diverse bodies, with our diverse identities, in conversation with these sacred texts, in the midst of this society?  How do we think Christianly about gender?  Join myself, Dr. Sarah Bakker Kellogg, and Dr. Scott MacDougall during Formation Hour on Nov. 26, Dec. 3, and Dec. 10, as we explore sex and gender through the lenses of biology, anthropology, and theology.  We’ll discuss what these disciplines have to say on the topic, swap perspectives and experiences, and wrestle together with what it means to live out our baptisms in a gendered world. – Rob Johnson

      Excellent class at All Souls

    2. MAJOR DETOURS THIS SUNDAY MORNING!! This Sunday, November 20th, is the Berkeley Half Marathon. The good news is that many All Solesians will be out racing together! In addition, many of our regular routes to church will be more complicated because of the road closures. Emily Hansen Curran is preaching at All Souls for the first time this Sunday, so make sure you plan ahead to make it in time! Here are directions for how to make your way to church with ease from any direction. Most of them should be smooth, but it would be wise to give yourself an extra 10-15 minutes in case you hit other race day traffic. A full map of closures is available here. Folks coming to the 7:30 service shouldn’t be affected. From the North: Your best bet is to stay north of Marin, avoid the circle, and climb all the way up to Spruce. Figure in an extra 10 minutes. Details: Off of 80, take the Buchanan St. exit. Continue up Marin Left on Peralta Right on Thousand Oaks Left on Arlington Right on Santa Barbara Left on Northampton Right on Spruce, and cruise on down to All Souls! From South Berkeley: Stay south of Channing, take Ashby up to Piedmont, looping above campus. Figure in an extra 10 minutes. Details: Staying south of Channing, go to Ashby. Take Ashby east Turn left on College Turn right on Dwight Turn left on Piedmont, continue onto Gayley Continue straight onto La Loma Turn left onto Le Conte Turn right on Euclid Turn left on Cedar, and cruise on down to All Souls!  From the East and South Take Tunnel Road to Claremont, stay above campus. Figure in an extra 10 minutes. Details: Take 24 to Tunnel Road Continue onto Ashby Turn right on Claremont Turn left on Derby Turn right on Warring Continue onto Piedmont, then continue onto Gayley Continue straight onto La Loma Turn left onto Le Conte Turn right on Euclid Turn left on Cedar, and cruise on down to All Souls! From the West: Get off at Ashby, and loop above campus. Figure in an extra 10 minutes. Details: From 80, take the Ashby exit Continue east on Ashby Turn left on College Turn right on Dwight Turn left on Piedmont, continue onto Gayley Continue straight onto La Loma Turn left onto Le Conte Turn right on Euclid Turn left on Cedar, and cruise on down to All Souls! From Central Berkeley [South of Marin, Santa Fe and Page, East of 4th Street, North of Bancroft/Channing, and West of Shattuck/Telegraph]To get to the 9am service, your best bet is to take side streets (avoid University!) and park on the west side of the race course, near the corner of Cedar & Shattuck and then walk the couple of blocks up to All Souls. Bonus points if you see an All Solesian running while you cross Shattuck! If you need a ride up from the east side of Shattuck, let Liz or Emily know and we’ll arrange for someone to pick you up there. You may get lucky crossing Shattuck at University and then continuing to Oxford, though it will likely be quite slow as they let cars across intermittently. University should be fully open at Shattuck after 9:45 am.

      How to get to All Souls Parish during the Berkeley Half Marathon

    3. From the Stewardship Team

      report from stewardship team

    4. WOULD YOU BE A GOOD STEPHEN MINISTER? Now is the time of year to consider this question.  Stephen Ministers are trained lay people who provide confidential, one-to-one support to others who are going through a crisis or a rough patch in their lives.  To learn more about becoming a Stephen Minister, please attend a 20-minute informational session on Sunday, November 19, at 10:20 a.m. in Liz’s office. Or contact Tom Reilly at 510-528-7832 or one of the other Stephen Leaders:  Nancy Austin, Judith Lothrop, or David Wight. For more information, here’s a link to an informative video on Stephen Ministry from PBS’s Religion and Ethics Newsweekly. And here is a link to a series of interviews with people who have received care from Stephen Ministers.

      Seeking Stephen Minister trainees for next year

    5. The Interfaith Vigil at the West County Detention Center

      "The Interfaith Vigil at the West County Detention Center" by Sarah Bakker Kellogg

    1. In 2006, PC World rated the Zip drive as the 15th worst technology product of all time.[9] Nonetheless, in 2007, PC World rated the Zip drive as the 23rd best technology product of all time[10] despite its known problems.


    1. iPad iPad Pro ($650) — Best Buy is the king of the iPad Pro deals, marking the 10.5-inch version down to $525 on Black Friday. Target isn't far behind, however; it's selling the device for $530. Finally, you can get $150 off any iPad model from T-Mobile if you purchase a 6GB or higher cellular plan with a leasing agreement.   iPad ($330) — iPad deals are numerous this holiday season, but Walmart edges out its competitors with a $249 price tag on the iPad 5th Generation. Target and Best Buy are both charging just $0.99 more. If you're feeling nostalgic, check out Groupon's markdowns of the iPad 3 (to $160 from $400) and iPad 4 (to $200 from $500), and Newegg's sales on the refurbished iPad 4 ($150). And you can get $100 off an iPad (or any tablet) from Sprint, if you purchase an unlimited data plan.  iPad Mini 4 ($400) — Best Buy's price of $275 is insane, and can't be beaten. T-Mobile's offer also applies to the iPad Mini 4. 

      iPad deals for Black Friday 2017

    1. Despite their differences, “Alias Grace” has the same timeliness that helped win “The Handmaid’s Tale” the Emmy for best drama. And it likely won’t be the last Atwood adaptation we get. Darren Aronofsky has announced plans to make a series from the MaddAddam trilogy, which looked like it might land at HBO. That deal fell through, but Aronofsky said he wasn’t giving up. And last year, MGM Television bought the rights to Atwood’s novel “The Heart Goes Last,” according to Deadline.

      reading the tea leaves for the future of the MaddAddam trilogy for the screen

    1. Motion photos are similar to Apple's Live Photos feature. When you take a photo, the Pixel 2 will record a small video before and after you tap the shutter button.By default, the Pixel 2 will automatically capture Motion Photos in situations where it's warranted. Basically, whenever there's motion in the photo.

      "motion photos" on Pixel 2

    1. Unlike some theories, which focus on top-down goal-setting, GTD works in the opposite direction. Allen argues that it is often difficult for individuals to focus on big picture goals if they cannot sufficiently control the day-to-day tasks that they frequently must face.[1]:54 By developing and using the trusted system that deals with day-to-day inputs, an individual can free up mental space to begin moving up to the next level.

      bottom-up in GTD

    1. Rapid Resist is a 501c3 fiscally sponsored organization of Inquiring Systems. We do not directly lobby or endorse candidates for office. Rather we provide services to grassroots activists engaged in legislative and issues advocacy. For a detailed overview of c3 law, please see Bolder Advocacy's resource on the issues.Rapid Resist Action is a California 501c4 that conducts direct lobbying to stop the hateful, backwards Trump agenda and defend prosperity, democracy and dignity for every working class American. 

      Rapid Resist 501c3 fiscal sponsorship / Rapid Resist Action CA 501c4

    1. So what is the difference? Well, there isn’t much of one at all, actually. I say that because the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are unlocked phones that do indeed work on all major US carriers and support 21 different LTE bands here, including those from AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, US Cellular, and of course, Verizon. We aren’t sure why Google and Verizon are making this somewhat confusing, but it probably has to do with Verizon’s exclusive deal to be the only carrier in the US to sell the phone. Either way, if you buy the Verizon version of the Pixel 2 or Pixel 2 XL, you can then take it to any carrier you want and it’ll work.

      Happy that the Pixel 2 works on both GSM and CDMA phone.

    1. On 31 October 1517, Luther wrote to his bishop, Albrecht von Brandenburg, protesting the sale of indulgences. He enclosed in his letter a copy of his "Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences", which came to be known as the Ninety-five Theses. Hans Hillerbrand writes that Luther had no intention of confronting the church, but saw his disputation as a scholarly objection to church practices, and the tone of the writing is accordingly "searching, rather than doctrinaire."[32] Hillerbrand writes that there is nevertheless an undercurrent of challenge in several of the theses, particularly in Thesis 86, which asks: "Why does the pope, whose wealth today is greater than the wealth of the richest Crassus, build the basilica of St. Peter with the money of poor believers rather than with his own money?"

      Oct 31, 1517

  46. Oct 2017
  47. Sep 2017
    1. Give those users the library's project key, which can be found under File > Project Properties...

      I think that we now use Script ID

  48. www.bbc.com www.bbc.com