blog062714

What We’re Reading: June 21-27

Pede$trian-friendly, death of the taxi, and bye-bye Aereo.

Pop-up redevelopment in Washington DC from http://www.popville.com/

We already know living in a pedestrian-friendly city can make you healthier and happier. New research shows it’s good for your bank account, too.

Developers in the hot, hot, hot Washington DC residential market are renovating row houses  into multi-story towers. Dubbed pop-ups (or middle fingers by the less enthused),  these redevelopments are legal, though the city is looking into rules to make these projects fit in with their neighborhoods.

If you’ve heard of Uber or any of the other ride sharing apps out there, you know they pose a real threat to the traditional medallion taxi companies and their drivers. Just another example of how technology is outpacing rules and regulations. Will something similar happen in real estate?

As soccer gains more of a foothold (ha!) in the US, employers are having to decide how to handle World Cup viewing during the work day. During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, trading volume in Latin American countries dropped an average of 77 percent when their national teams were playing, according to the European Central Bank. Trading volume in Africa dropped 63 percent; 43 percent in the U.S. and 38 percent in Europe.

And maybe everyone gathered around the TV is distracting you. Here’s how to politely let everyone know you have work to do.

“Ten Best Place to Live” lists are a dime a dozen these days, but what about the opposite? The New York Times looks at the hardest places to live in the US by averaging five factors at the county level. Clay County, KY comes out at the top(?) of the list. Most of the hardest places are rural Appalachia or the deep south. At the other end of the spectrum, the ‘easiest’ county is Los Alamos County, NM, home of the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The verdict is in: audiobooks are the best multi-tasking tool. We couldn’t agree more! Check out our library’s audiobook collection—members can check out up to 6 audiobooks at a time for a period of 21 days each, with the option to renew, for *free*.

A company called Five analyzes the language we use in Facebook posts, and determines “our relative affiliation to five personality attributes”: openness, extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and neuroticism—and then it compares those traits with those of famous people and your Facebook friends. As is stated in the article—these personality generalizations are helpful for advertisers. For users, it’s an interesting exercise.

The US Supreme Court ruled this week that Aereo is illegal. The court found that the cloud-based antenna service that circumvented local cable violates copyright laws.  One less way to cut the cord to your cable provider.

New York Magazine has an interesting article on the death of the phone call. The author notes that phone calls outside of work hours are not only unusual, they’re kinda scary:

Who died? Who’s trapped on a mountain? What awful global calamity is unfolding? I use apps and text messages for everything – ordering dinner, hailing cabs, telling friends I’m running late – and I rarely check my voice mail. I don’t have any friends who regularly call me; even my parents have switched to texts.

The recent denial-of-service (DoS) attacks on Evernote, Feedly, and Realtor.com bring to our attention the ever changing landscape of cybercrime. New York Times writer Ian Urbina discusses the state of cybercrime on the Internet.

Real estate technophiles see some movement on the smart-home front this week, with Quirky’s release of the Wink operating system.

We are so dependent on our iPhones.  Lose them, lose everything.  Huffington Post reveals how to annoy iPhone thieves and protect your phone.

Dave

Senior Information Specialist

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