softest

When journalistic institutions widely publicize material of this sort, only to abdicate the vital work of rigorously addressing its substance, they make its least plausible claims more likely to be normalized. They leave the project of assessing its merits and flaws to Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, and other venues where the loudest voices tend to prevail, instead of offering their own careful reporting and expert analysis.

-Conor Friedersdorf ‘The Most Common Error in Media Coverage of the Google Memo‘ The Atlantic

tools

At the same time, he promises it will be the birthplace of new toys and tools the rest of us haven’t imagined yet.

Ive’s friend Bono, writing in an email, says he’s “restless and relentless in pursuit of perfection,” while Norman Foster, whose architecture firm was hired by Apple to build the headquarters at a reported cost of $5 billion, calls him “a poet.” Other designers are “amazing essayists, but the difference between an essay and a poem is that you really have to work harder at the poem. It’s much more distilled, it’s much more the essence,” Foster says. “He works tirelessly at the detail, evolving, improving, refining. For me, that makes him a poet.”

–Christina Passariello ‘How Jony Ive masterminded Apple’s new headquarters‘ The Wall Street Journal

erroneous

Among the clearest changes since Mr. Kelly’s arrival is a more careful review of information, from statements of fact to news reports, before it goes to the president’s desk, a White House official said. News articles and policy proposals will first be run through Mr. Kelly, in part to reduce the risk of erroneous material appearing on the presidential Twitter feed.

— Michael C. Bender and Rebecca Ballhaus ‘Kelly’s Rules for Trump’s West Wing: Stop Bickering, Get in Early, Make an Appointment‘ The Wall Street Journal

ripening

This art of ripening took time to perfect. And there were some accidents along the way. Ethylene is combustible, and in 1936, the Pittsburgh Banana Company building exploded, causing it to rain bananas in the city’s Strip District.

Today ripening can be slowed or sped up by tapping a touch-screen. “If sales are up, we increase the temperature,” Mr. Serafino said. “If sales are down, we decrease the temperature.” The range was three degrees up or down, he said.

“You don’t want to stress the bananas.”

-Annie Correal ‘The Secret Life of the City Banana‘ The New York Times

rules

China can make its own play under global trade rules. Beijing can quickly demand binding arbitration — and could have a good chance of winning. China was allowed into the W.T.O. with very few limits on its ability to regulate services or foreign investment, two categories in which China was fairly weak when it entered the organization in 2001.

If China did win a W.T.O. case, it would then have the right to restrict American exports to the same extent that the United States restricts Chinese imports.

China consistently exports four times as much to the United States as it imports. Even so, China could penalize American companies like Apple and Starbucks that have very large operations that produce and sell in China with minimal imports from the United States.

“U.S. negotiators, I think, basically dropped the ball,” said Nicholas R. Lardy, a longtime trade expert at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, referring to the rules on services that were negotiated when China entered the W.T.O. “They didn’t think China was very important.”

-Keith Bradsher and Paul Mozur ‘As Washington Tries to Protect Tech, China Could Fight Back’ The New York Times