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Bleeding Edge Roundup

TECH

Autonomous braking to be in most cars by 2022
The Associated Press

Automatic emergency braking uses cameras, radar and other sensors to see objects in the way. The car slows or stops a if the driver doesn't react. The technology is already available as an option on many models, but automakers are struggling with how to fit it into current product plans that might not be ready for the electronics. Cars with automatic braking can cut rear-end crashes by about 40 percent, eliminating about 700,000 police-reported crashes per year, according to a study released in January 2013 by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Read the full article here.

Letter to Wheeler on Broadband Privacy Rulemaking
Center for Democracy and Technology

Civil rights organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the NAACP penned a letter to FCC Chairman, Thomas Wheeler, about the importance of comprehensive privacy code in broadband communications. It in part reads, “We understand the Commission may commence a rulemaking soon on the privacy obligations of broadband Internet access service providers (ISPs). As part of that rulemaking, we encourage the Commission to review the ways in which the use of collected data could have a disproportionate adverse impact on historically disadvantaged communities, develop rules consistent with the Civil Rights Principles for the Era of Big Data, and ensure that baseline privacy protections extend equally to all wireless and wireline broadband consumers, regardless of their income level.”

Read the full letter here.

Shoes that Produce Electricity Created by Engineering Students in Vietnam
By Robert Bagatsing
GineersNow

Engineering students from the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology, with the support of socially responsible companies, have developed a way to convert the kinetic energy spent by the Vietnamese students in walking to usable electricity. The Green Cross Kinetic Energy Shoe charges integrated batteries while the children walk. The energy is transferred to the batteries, which can be taken out of the shoes and used to power battery-operated lanterns.

Read the full article here.

SUSTAINABILITY

US Electricity Sales Dropped In 2015 For Fifth Time In 8 Years
By Joe Romm
Think Progress

There’s no “I” in team.  Actually there are 3:  investment, innovation and incentives.  Energy efficiency is improving, which means we can spend less, pollute less and do more. Let’s call this a win.

Read the full article here.

Tesla's Model 3 will be unveiled near Los Angeles on March 31st
By Chris Ziegler
The Verge

Suicide doors for everyone! So far electric cars have either resembled go-carts or been out of the price range of, well, most of us. Tesla is attempting to change that with it’s latest model. Take that Edison! This new energy efficient ride will cost about $35,000. Even better, it’s not made by a company that killed over 100 people due to gross negligence.

Read the full article here.

LABOR & ECONOMY

New Zealand is Considering a Universal Basic Income
Futurism

It looks like New Zealand will be joining the debate on UBI, or universal basic income. Andrew Little, Leader of the New Zealand Labour Party confirmed that his party is considering the concept. These considerations are in line with fundamental shifts in how local employees are working, and how jobs are evolving as a result of automation. Indeed, Little notes the impetus for UBI considerations, stating, “The possibility of higher structural unemployment is actually what’s driving us.” This announcement comes after a trial run commenced in the Canadian province of Ontario.

Read the full article here.

Should labor love Garland?
By Marianne Levine
Politico

As chief judge of the D.C. Circuit, Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland blends a penchant for judicial restraint more frequently associated with conservatives with a deference to executive power more typical of liberals. On labor issues, Garland’s deference has typically proved beneficial to unions. According to the legal blog On Labor, Garland wrote 22 decisions involving the National Labor Relations Board from 1997 to 2016. In all but four, Judge Garland upheld the entirety of the NLRB's decision which found that an employer had committed unfair labor practices.

Read the full article here.

GLOBAL CONFLICT & DEVELOPMENT

Syrian Kurds Hope to Establish a Federal Region in Country’s North
By Anne Barnard
The New York Times

Syrian Kurdish parties are working on a plan to declare a federal region across much of northern Syria, several of their representatives said on Wednesday. They said their aim was to formalize the semi-autonomous zone they have established during five years of war, and to create a model for decentralized government throughout the country.

Read the full article here.

Activists and Western Powers Say Justice Must Be Part of Syrian Peace
Reuters

Syrian activists and Western envoys say Syria's President Bashar al-Assad and others should face justice for war crimes as part of any peace process. They are calling for the release of tens of thousands of detainees languishing in government jails as part of confidence-building measures in the Geneva talks between the Syrian government and opposition. These demands were initially stated while speaking at the Swiss Press Club in Geneva alongside an exhibition of some of the 55,000 photographs taken by a former military police photographer code-named "Caesar," documenting the torture and deaths of detainees in Syrian state custody.

Read the full article here.

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim on revolutionizing how we treat the world's poor
By Ezra Klein
Vox

"To say that there is not enough money is just a lie. There's plenty of money in the world; it's just not going to health care for poor people,” says Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank. Kim now oversees 15,000 employees responsible for using about $200 billion in loans to lift as many people out of global poverty as possible. Between Kim’s personal background and his personal mission, this podcast interview between Kim and Vox’s Ezra Klein is well worth your time.

Read the full article here.

AMERICAN COMMUNITIES

Americans agree to give Muslims badges to 'track' them for fake Donald Trump campaign
By Jess Staufenberg
Independent

People have been captured on film agreeing to give Muslims badges and hand over their personal details so they can be "tracked" as possible terrorists. Video of the social experiment in San Diego shows a man posing as a Donald Trump campaigner asking passers-by to give Muslims special badges identifying them, in return for $40.The video has been viewed more than 70,000 times. It draws a direct link between presidential hopeful Donald Trump's anti-Muslim comments and the wider complacency around Islamophobia in US society.

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Black Kids in Mississippi Are Being Systematically Denied the Services They Are Entitled To
By Michelle Chen
The Nation

While the national political spotlight has faded from Mississippi since the primary vote, its poorest families are now getting the wrong kind of attention from Washington: The US Commission on Civil Rights has issued a scathing report detailing how both childcare providers and families are systematically cheated out of their entitled social welfare resources. According to a probe by the commission’s Mississippi State Advisory Committee, black communities have been deprived of essential federal child care supports due to funding formulas and practices that have in effect punished black families and the child care centers serving them.

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It’s not just Flint. Lead taints water across the U.S., EPA records show
By Darryl Fears
The Washington Post

Lead contamination in drinking water is a problem that reaches far beyond the disaster in Flint, Michigan. It threatens children’s health nationwide. On Thursday, USA Today reported that “hundreds of schools across the nation” have lead-tainted water, exposing children to “excessive amounts of an element doctors agree is unsafe at any level.” The story relied on an analysis of Environmental Protection Agency data, which it said revealed that “about 350 schools and day-care centers failed lead tests a total of about 470 times from 2012 through 2015.”

Read the full article here

 

Bleeding Edge Roundup

Yemeni Government Lacks Vision for Future

Yemeni Government Lacks Vision for Future