If you want to know how to stop school shootings, ask the Secret Service – The Conversation


The team studied 37 school shootings involving 41 attackers that took place from December 1974 through May 2000. Data included investigative, school, court and mental health records. In addition, 10 school shooters were interviewed to gain their perspectives from “conceptualization to execution” of the attacks. A series of findings emerged

What the History of Food Stamps Reveals | JSTOR Daily


The Food Stamp Act of 1964 expanded the program. Much of its support came from farm state senators, including George McGovern, a South Dakota Democrat, and Robert Dole, a Republican from Kansas.
Then-Senator Robert Kennedy took highly-publicized tours of the Mississippi Delta to shed light on the plight of America’s hungry. In 1968, a study titled Hunger USA generated public concern.

The biggest expansion in the food stamps program came during the Nixon administration. In his first message to Congress, Nixon argued that he was determined “to put an end to hunger in America for all time.” By 1971, commodity distribution was largely abandoned in favor of food stamps, which allowed the poor themselves to make decisions about the food they purchased. By the end of Nixon’s term, the program had expanded. But media accounts of college students relying on the subsidies to feed themselves and other accounts of apparent abuses emerged. In 1974, the program was expanded to all the counties in the United States and the

The Science of Guns Proves Arming Untrained Citizens Is a Bad Idea – Scientific American


Another myth to fall to the facts is that gun-control laws disarm good people and leave the crooks with weapons. Not so, say the Johns Hopkins authors: “Strong regulation and oversight of licensed gun dealers—defined as having a state law that required state or local licensing of retail firearm sellers, mandatory record keeping by those sellers, law enforcement access to records for inspection, regular inspections of gun dealers, and mandated reporting of theft of loss of firearms—was associated with 64 percent less diversion of guns to criminals by in-state gun dealers.”

Why is there so little research on guns in the US? 6 questions answered – The Conversation


5. Has gun research stopped?The lack of funding has discouraged firearms research. Many researchers are employed within academia. In this publish-or-perish environment, researchers are under pressure to publish their work in academic journals and fund it through sources beyond their home institution. Without outside funding, their research often isn’t possible. Leading firearms researcher Wintemute says “no more than a dozen active, experienced investigators in the United States have focused their careers primarily on firearm violence.”

Writing essays by formula teaches students how to not think | Aeon Essays


The Rule of Five spells out issues that need to be addressed in any piece of analytical writing: argument, frame, evidence, analysis, conclusion. If you don’t address these issues, then you are not doing an effective job of presenting your work. But by addressing them only in this order, and confining each function of the argument to a hermetically sealed location within the paper, you turn a useful set of guidelines into an iron cage. It’s dysfunctional – to say nothing of off-putting, infantilising and intellectually arid. But, then again, it makes life easier for all concerned. So it’s not going away soon.

Voter files: What are they, how are they used and are they accurate? | Pew Research Center


Since the rise of modern survey research three-quarters of a century ago, much of what we know about voter attitudes has been based on interviews with random samples of voters, sometimes combined with tallies of actual votes and the characteristics of voters in particular locations. But relatively new technologies and public policy changes have given pollsters, academics and other researchers – not to mention candidates and political professionals – a potentially powerful new tool for probing the electorate: digital databases that claim to cover most of the U.S. adult population.

Despite their widespread use, these national databases (commonly called “voter files”) are little known by the general public and haven’t received much scholarly attention. Pew Research Center’s Ruth Igielnik, a research associate, and Senior Survey Advisor Scott Keeter recently released an extensive study of the completeness and accuracy of commercially available voter files, which they assessed by matching participants from the Ce

Norfolk Joins Waze Crowdsourced Traffic and Navigation App


he Waze Connected Citizens Program has nearly 500 partners around the world and gives municipal leaders an unprecedented look at real-time road activity, empowering partners to harness real-time driver insights to improve congestion and make better informed planning decisions. Established as a two-way data share, Waze provides partners with real-time, anonymous, Waze-generated incident and slow-down information directly from the source: drivers themselves. In exchange, Norfolk provides real-time government-reported construction, crash and road closure data to Waze to return one of the most succinct, thorough overviews of current road conditions today.

NYTimes: The Autonomous Selfie Drone Is Here. Is Society Ready for It?


Autonomous drones have long been hyped, but until recently they’ve been little more than that. The technology in Skydio’s machine suggests a new turn. Drones that fly themselves — whether following people for outdoor self-photography, which is Skydio’s intended use, or for longer-range applications like delivery, monitoring and surveillance — are coming faster than you think.

They’re likely to get much cheaper, smaller and more capable. They’re going to be everywhere, probably sooner than we can all adjust to them.