3 minutes estimated reading time
Walmart store of the future
Walmart has built over 100 Walmart store of the future designs. Some of the elements seek emulate the best bits of Target with seasonal low priced items close to the door and a more experiential approach to merchandising.
Some of the other changes in the Walmart store of the future include QRcodes on signage and a Walmart smartphone app for self-checkout show a blending of real world and digital, or as we like to call it here, the web of no web.
CIA director William Burns
CIA William Burns gave this wide ranging talk in February 2023. It seems apropos to share it here. Burns was involved in the Middle East before and through much of GWoT (global war on terror). Burns commentary on the Middle East at the time is very much worthwhile about thinking about now. Burns’ book The Back Channel was frank about his failings as well as successes when it was published back in 2021.
Burns handled the Ukraine conflict particularly well in the early stages. His comments on Israel and Palestine look particularly prophetic now, even though western intelligence agencies were shocked by what happened on October 7, 2023.
I’m sorry to be so uplifting today about the international landscape, and I also have to say that, you know, in the conversations I had with Israeli and Palestinian leaders, you know, I think it left me quite concerned about the prospects for even greater fragility and even greater violence between Israelis and Palestinians as well. You know, I was, as Barbara mentioned, a senior U.S. Diplomat 20 years ago during the Second Intifada, and I’m concerned, as are my colleagues in the intelligence community, the lot of what we’re seeing today has a very unhappy resemblance to some of those realities that we saw then too.William J Burns
Operation Shady RAT
How an experimental honey pot simulating computerised industrial systems reveal the long term hacking programme done by APT 1 for the Chinese government. The RAT in question was a ‘remote access trojan’ piece of malware.
Irish radio broadcasting
RTÉ, the Irish public broadcaster started broadcasting radio programmes in 1926. At the time it was called 2RN, it became by Radio Athlone, which was eventually called Radio Éireann in 1938. The ‘T’ came in after to the first television broadcasts in 1961.
RTÉ was central to my identity as an Irishman spending a good deal of my childhood in Britain – my culture, language and literature came through the speakers. The programmes now conveyed online offer my parents an information lifeline to everything happening at home since the long wave and medium wave radio services were shut down. This documentary from 2001 reflects one the first 75 years of Irish radio broadcasting.
Greg Lukianoff and Rikki Schlott: The Canceling of the American Mind
Talk at the Churchill Club of California about their book The Cancelling of the American Mind. It is interesting hear Rikki Schlott reference The Coddling of The American Mind, which Lukianoff co-wrote with Jonathan Haidt. In Cancelling the authors look to document some of the failings in how cancel culture works on campus and in the workplace. It is much more of a partisan work than Coddling, mainly because it driven by Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. The comparison to the red scare of the 1950s are interesting.