Λινξ 173: Πράγματα Για Διάβασμα

1. Η φρικτή ιστορία του Καλίφ Μπρόουντερ

Τον έπιασαν για ληστεία που δεν είχε κάνει. Έμεινε τρία εφιαλτικά χρόνια στη φυλακή, περιμένωντας μια ανούσια δίκη. Το New Yorker του έκανε ένα μεγάλο αφιέρωμα. Τις προάλλες, αυτοκτόνησε.

2. Ένα παλαβό σεμινάριο υποκριτικής με το Μάρλον Μπράντο 

Συνέβη το 2002, το παρακολούθησαν γνωστοί ηθοποιοί όπως ο Ρόμπιν Γουίλιαμς και ο Λεονάρντο Ντι Κάπριο, και ήταν εντελώς αλλοπρόσαλλο και αλλόκοτο.

During one of the sessions, a troupe of little people and a team of Samoan wrestlers — Brando somehow had wrangled all of them to the warehouse on the same day — did improvisation exercises together on the stage. Another time, Brando plucked a homeless man from a dumpster and brought him in for acting lessons. He had students strip naked in front of the entire class. While a jazz musician played Brando's favorite tunes on a rented piano, Philippe Petit, the French tightrope walker who had crossed the Twin Towers, did stunts on a high-wire. Michael Jackson popped in for a class. Robin Williams attended all 10 days, at one point doing a 30-minute improv rou­tine about haggling with a used-car salesman.

3. Η μυστική ιστορία της ομάδας που σκότωσε τον Μπιν Λάντεν

They have plotted deadly missions from secret bases in the badlands of Somalia. In Afghanistan, they have engaged in combat so intimate that they have emerged soaked in blood that was not their own. On clandestine raids in the dead of the night, their weapons of choice have ranged from customized carbines to primeval tomahawks. Around the world, they have run spying stations disguised as commercial boats, posed as civilian employees of front companies and operated undercover at embassies as male-female pairs, tracking those the United States wants to kill or capture. Those operations are part of the hidden history of the Navy’s SEAL Team 6, one of the nation’s most mythologized, most secretive and least scrutinized military organizations. Once a small group reserved for specialized but rare missions, the unit best known for killing Osama bin Laden has been transformed by more than a decade of combat into a global manhunting machine.

4. Ο άνθρωπος που θέλει να μάθει τις μηχανές να σκέφτονται

Ένα ενδιαφέρον προφίλ του Ντάγκλας Χόφστατερ, συγγραφέα αυτού, που μελετά το θέμα της τεχνητής νοημοσύνης από την ανάποδη.

“Cognition is recognition,” he likes to say. He describes “seeing as” as the essential cognitive act: you see some lines as “an A,” you see a hunk of wood as “a table,” you see a meeting as “an emperor-has-no-clothes situation” and a friend’s pouting as “sour grapes” and a young man’s style as “hipsterish” and on and on ceaselessly throughout your day. That’s what it means to understand. But how does understanding work? For three decades, Hofstadter and his students have been trying to find out, trying to build “computer models of the fundamental mechanisms of thought.”

5. Ο Ερυθρός Σταυρός συγκέντρωσε $1 δις για την Αϊτή, και μ' αυτό έφτιαξε έξι σπίτια 

Μια έρευνα για τον τρόπο που ο οργανισμός διαχειρίζεται τα χρήματα που συγκεντρώνει, από την ProPublica.

In late 2011, the Red Cross launched a multimillion-dollar project to transform the desperately poor area, which was hit hard by the earthquake that struck Haiti the year before. The main focus of the project — called LAMIKA, an acronym in Creole for “A Better Life in My Neighborhood” — was building hundreds of permanent homes. Today, not one home has been built in Campeche. Many residents live in shacks made of rusty sheet metal, without access to drinkable water, electricity or basic sanitation. When it rains, their homes flood and residents bail out mud and water.

The Red Cross received an outpouring of donations after the quake, nearly half a billion dollars.

The group has publicly celebrated its work. But in fact, the Red Cross has repeatedly failed on the ground in Haiti. Confidential memos, emails from worried top officers, and accounts of a dozen frustrated and disappointed insiders show the charity has broken promises, squandered donations, and made dubious claims of success. The Red Cross says it has provided homes to more than 130,000 people. But the actual number of permanent homes the group has built in all of Haiti: six.

STORY: The January 12 earthquake in Haiti had catastrophic consequences, as it struck the most populated area in the country. The number of casualties rapidly rose to more than 200,000 people, and at least one million Haitians lost their homes. Structures of all kinds collapsed, from shantytowns to national landmarks. A year after the disaster the majority still lives in primitive tent camps around the city. In the weeks following the disaster sporadic violence, looting and gang-related gunfire broke out in downtown Port-au-Prince. The earthquake in Haiti could hardly have struck a worse place on the planet - the most basic necessities like water, food, electricity, communications, transportation and health care that is needed after a quake, were already inadequate before the quake hit. It has created a massive humanitarian crisis in the country routinely referred to as the poorest in the Western hemisphere. THIS IMAGE: A young boy escapes the violence that grew amid desperate looters, as gang-related gunfire broke out in downtown Port-au-Prince.

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