Hulu Is Developing a Cable-Style Online TV Service – By Joe Flint and  Shalini Ramachandran Updated May 1, 2016 10:56 p.m. ET


New subscription service would stream feeds of popular broadcast and cable TV channels

Hulu sees an opportunity to pitch its planned service to the more than 10 million people who already subscribe to its on-demand service. Above, ‘The Mindy Project.’

Hulu sees an opportunity to pitch its planned service to the more than 10 million people who already subscribe to its on-demand service. Above, ‘The Mindy Project. — ’Photo: Hulu/Everett Collection

Hulu is developing a subscription service that would stream feeds of popular broadcast and cable TV channels, people familiar with the plans said, a move that would make the company a competitor to traditional pay-TV providers and other new digital entrants.

Until now, Hulu has offered on-demand programming from major networks, similar to Netflix Inc. The company hopes to launch the new cable TV-style online service in the first quarter of 2017, the people said. Walt Disney Co. and 21st Century Fox,which are co-owners of Hulu, are near agreements to license many of their channels for the platform.

21st Century Fox and News Corp, owner of The Wall Street Journal, were until mid-2013 part of the same company.

Disney’s ABC, ESPN and Disney Channel are expected to be available on the service along with the Fox broadcast network, Fox News, FX and Fox’s national and regional sports channels. Preliminary conversations with other programmers have begun, but the service isn’t looking to offer all the hundreds of channels found in the traditional cable bundle, according to the people familiar with the plans.

Comcast Corp. ’s NBCUniversal is also an owner in Hulu, but so far hasn’t agreed to license its networks for the planned digital pay-TV service, the people said.

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What’s Good For The Heart Is Good For The Brain – PATTI NEIGHMOND May 2, 20163:45 AM ET


Hoping to keep your mental edge as you get older? Look after your heart, a recent analysis suggests, and your brain will benefit, too.

A research team led by Hannah Gardener, an epidemiologist at the University of Miami, analyzed a subset of data from the Northern Manhattan Study, a large, ongoing study of risk factors for stroke among whites, blacks and Hispanics living in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City.

The scientists wanted to see how people in their 60s and 70s would do on repeated tests of memory and mental acuity six years later — and, specifically, what sort of subtle differences a heart-healthy lifestyle might make to the brain, beyond the prevention of strokes. Their findings appear in a recent issue of the Journal of the American Heart Association.

In this particular study, the researchers started with more than a thousand people who’d had their cardiovascular health assessed using measures that the American Heart Association has dubbed Life’s Simple 7.

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Your Simple (Yes, Simple) Guide to Quantum Entanglement – FRANK WILCZEK 05.01.16 7:00 AM


An aura of glamorous mystery attaches to the concept of quantum entanglement, and also to the (somehow) related claim that quantum theory requires “many worlds.” Yet in the end those are, or should be, scientific ideas, with down-to-earth meanings and concrete implications. Here I’d like to explain the concepts of entanglement and many worlds as simply and clearly as I know how.

I.

Entanglement is often regarded as a uniquely quantum-mechanical phenomenon, but it is not. In fact, it is enlightening, though somewhat unconventional, to consider a simple non-quantum (or “classical”) version of entanglement first. This enables us to pry the subtlety of entanglement itself apart from the general oddity of quantum theory.

Quanta Magazine


Original story reprinted with permission from Quanta Magazine, an editorially independent division of the Simons Foundation whose mission is to enhance public understanding of science by covering research developments and trends in mathematics and the physical and life sciences


Entanglement arises in situations where we have partial knowledge of the state of two systems. For example, our systems can be two objects that we’ll call c-ons. The “c” is meant to suggest “classical,” but if you’d prefer to have something specific and pleasant in mind, you can think of our c-ons as cakes.

Our c-ons come in two shapes, square or circular, which we identify as their possible states. Then the four possible joint states, for two c-ons, are (square, square), (square, circle), (circle, square), (circle, circle). The following tables show two examples of what the probabilities could be for finding the system in each of those four states.

We say that the c-ons are “independent” if knowledge of the state of one of them does not give useful information about the state of the other. Our first table has this property. If the first c-on (or cake) is square, we’re still in the dark about the shape of the second. Similarly, the shape of the second does not reveal anything useful about the shape of the first.

On the other hand, we say our two c-ons are entangled when information about one improves our knowledge of the other. Our second table demonstrates extreme entanglement. In that case, whenever the first c-on is circular, we know the second is circular too. And when the first c-on is square, so is the second. Knowing the shape of one, we can infer the shape of the other with certainty.

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America Has Never Been So Ripe for Tyranny – by Andrew Sullivan May 1, 2016 9:00 p.m.


Democracies end when they are too democratic. And right now, America is a breeding ground for tyranny.

Illustration by Zohar Lazar

As this dystopian election campaign has unfolded, my mind keeps being tugged by a passage in Plato’s Republic. It has unsettled — even surprised — me from the moment I first read it in graduate school. The passage is from the part of the dialogue where Socrates and his friends are talking about the nature of different political systems, how they change over time, and how one can slowly evolve into another. And Socrates seemed pretty clear on one sobering point: that “tyranny is probably established out of no other regime than democracy.” What did Plato mean by that? Democracy, for him, I discovered, was a political system of maximal freedom and equality, where every lifestyle is allowed and public offices are filled by a lottery. And the longer a democracy lasted, Plato argued, the more democratic it would become. Its freedoms would multiply; its equality spread. Deference to any sort of authority would wither; tolerance of any kind of inequality would come under intense threat; and multiculturalism and sexual freedom would create a city or a country like “a many-colored cloak decorated in all hues.”

This rainbow-flag polity, Plato argues, is, for many people, the fairest of regimes. The freedom in that democracy has to be experienced to be believed — with shame and privilege in particular emerging over time as anathema. But it is inherently unstable. As the authority of elites fades, as Establishment values cede to popular ones, views and identities can become so magnificently diverse as to be mutually uncomprehending. And when all the barriers to equality, formal and informal, have been removed; when everyone is equal; when elites are despised and full license is established to do “whatever one wants,” you arrive at what might be called late-stage democracy. There is no kowtowing to authority here, let alone to political experience or expertise.

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White isn’t a neutral color: “Doctor Strange,” Tilda Swinton and the “unwinnable” diversity argument – SILPA KOVVALI SUNDAY, MAY 1, 2016 02:30 PM PDT


Marvel wants us to believe that erasing Asians from their upcoming film is simply the most sensible option

White isn't a neutral color: "Doctor Strange," Tilda Swinton and the "unwinnable" diversity argument

In a recent interview, “Doctor Strange” screenwriter C. Robert Cargill insisted that the casting of the iconic the Ancient One was “absolutely unwinnable.” Asked by the hosts of the Double Toasted podcast about the decision to cast Tilda Swinton as a traditionally Asian character, Cargill declared, “It all comes down onto which way you’re willing to lose,” listing off a litany of concerns. The character himself, as historically depicted, is a “racist stereotype.” And because he is from Tibet, “a region of the world that is in a very weird political place,” to recognize his origins is to “risk alienating one billion people who think that that’s bull shit.” The background of Doctor Strange is itself Orientalist, another “white guy goes to the Orient and adopts their ways and it’s a great white hero story.” Faced with this supposedly losing proposition, Cargill claimed that director and co-screenwriter Scott Derrickson decided to “give a great meaty role to an actress.” “The hill Scott decided to die on was the one of feminism,” Cargill said.

The metaphor is an apt one, for Cargill seemed to point to a casting choice that challenged gender assumptions as somehow redemptive for its catering to racial ones. But it is possible to simultaneously challenge both. (Intersectionality might have been a better resting place for Derrickson.) Cargill’s rhetorical technique is also entirely disingenuous. Yes, he, Derrickson, and their fellow screenwriters are all white men. But Cargill did note that critics have suggested Michelle Yeoh, a Chinese-Malaysian actress, as an alternative casting choice, and is thus presumably aware that minority women exist.

At times, Cargill seemed to justify harsh critiques, but blamed his Marvel predecessors for creating such an “awkward” character to begin with. A host leaped in to present a sympathetic analysis. “All these characters were created back in the early ’60s,” he offered.

“By a bunch of white men,” Cargill noted, with nary a hint of self-awareness.

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At one border park, separated immigrant families hug across a steel divide – By Yanan Wang May 1 at 7:02 PM


Gabriela Esparza, her back to the camera, hugs her mother and sister at Friendship Park. (Sandy Huffaker for The Washington Post)

SAN DIEGO — Gabriela Esparza has a standing date on most Saturdays to talk to her mother, on a schedule that never changes. She drives down Interstate 5 and turns off into a sprawling wildlife habitat bounded by the beach and Pacific Ocean and an 18-foot galvanized metal fence that stretches as far as she can see.

She makes her way toward a small yard surrounded by steel mesh and waits until 10 a.m., when a U.S. Border Patrol agent opens a heavy gate. Her mother is on the other side, in Tijuana, Mexico, waiting to see her daughter through the checkered grate, perhaps to touch her fingertips. They stay as long as they can, until another family needs a turn or the agent in charge warns, “five more minutes,” and the gate is locked shut at 2 p.m.

This pen is Friendship Park, the only federally established binational meeting place along the 2,000-mile border between the United States and Mexico. For seven years, this meeting through the mesh was as close as Esparza, 23, could get to her mother and sister.

This weekend was different. Esparza and her 2-year-old son, Leonel, stood in line Saturday with others chosen to participate in a celebration of Children’s Day in Mexico. For only the third time, the emergency door on this portion of the border fence would open, and five families would have three minutes each to embrace.

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