Why We Will Never Hear What Mozart Heard | JSTOR Daily


"When we play one of Mozart’s or Beethoven’s compositions, or when we hear one, we probably aren’t hearing what they heard or what they thought in their heads as they composed. Their pianos were quite different from the ones we play today. Modern pianos are the product of a 600-year evolution. The instrument has evolved from the mention of Hermann Poll’s clavicembalum in 1397, through various clavichords and harpsichords to the modern grand piano."

Larry J. Sabato’s Crystal Ball » New Poll: Some Americans Express Troubling Racial Attitudes Even as Majority O ppose White Supremacists

Even though the %s are small in some cases, they make the point that the raw numbers are large…

A big consideration on some of the responses is snipped below.


A fundamental question that this poll sought to help clarify is whether there is a sizable portion of the American public that could be receptive to the types of messages being disseminated by groups associated with the alt-right and/or white supremacy. When respondents were asked if they supported the alt-right, white nationalists, and neo-Nazis, only a small percentage said they did. But for both the alt-right and white nationalism, about one-fifth of respondents said they neither supported nor opposed those groups or movements.

Within this poll a sizable number of respondents selected the “neither agree nor disagree” option. Given the racially-charged and controversial nature of some of the statements polled, these “middling” answers seemed remarkable, particularly given the fact that a “Don’t know” option was also presented and was available if, for example, one wished to express uncertainty or a lack of knowledge. Ipsos pollster Julia Clark examined the makeup of the “neither agree nor disagree” respond

The elements of the information-engagement typology | Pew Research Center

In this study, Pew Research Center aimed to study broad patterns in people’s approach to information and report on a spectrum of engagement among Americans ranging from relatively high enthusiasm to relatively deep wariness. The information-user typology here was built around analyzing five batches of questions in the survey: First, it assessed people’s level of interest in some key news and information subjects. Second, it captured their trust in various information sources. Third, it explored areas where people are interested in learning and growing. Fourth, it probed aspects of their lifestyle that might tie to their ability to spend time with information. And fifth, it explored people’s technology assets.

6 rules for rebuilding infrastructure in an era of ‘unprecedented’ weather events


Yet as cities rebuild and other cities watch to glean lessons, we consistently sidestep the historical legacies, public policies and political-economic structures that continue to make low-income and minority populations, such as homeless people, more vulnerable to extreme weather events. For this to change, infrastructure must be designed with the most vulnerable in mind first.

Driverless cars could see humankind sprawl ever further into the countryside – The Conversation

Autonomous vehicles promise a future in which passengers are free to use their time productively (working, for example). And they can park themselves (or be part of a shared pool) which saves yet more time in the morning rush. Coupled with faster journey times, the incentives to live further out of town will increase significantly.

How flood insurance works: 6 questions answered – The Conversation


Editor’s note: Hurricane Harvey dumped up to 50 inches of rain on parts of Texas and Louisiana last month. Meanwhile, Hurricane Irma is bearing down on Florida, which will also likely cause substantial flooding. Homeowners generally rely on insurance provided by the federal government to cover the costs of rebuilding their lives after a flood. We asked an insurance expert to explain the government program and its challenges.