Interesting Bits: Fri, 19th Aug 2022

Bruce Schneier:

“Amazon has revealed that it gives police videos from its Ring doorbells without a warrant and without user consent.”

I find the workings of the Premier League to be intriguing, here’s the story behind Brentford’s rise and rise.

Brentford FC beat Swansea this past Saturday in the “World’s Richest Game” — the Championship Play-Off Final — earning the Bees a promotion to the English Premier League and the roughly $300 million in guaranteed money that comes with it.

Even more interesting?

Less than a decade ago, with the club facing financial stress, a professional sports gambler invested about $700,000 into the club — eventually taking over as team owner in 2012.

That man was Matthew Benham, and this is his story.

“The evergreen tree that outlasted the dinosaurs is now endangered”, according to an article on CNN. Fascinating that these trees have been around so long. There used to be two in the garden of the house I grew up in. When you stop and look, they are quite unusual trees – all small, spiky, hard leaves and the fruit pods.

The ancient monkey puzzle tree has distinctive spiny leaves and intricate scaly branches. Its unusual features, scientists believe, evolved as a defense against towering, long-necked dinosaurs.

Reaching up to 160 feet (48.8 meters) tall and able to live for a millennium, the evergreen tree is a survivor from the Jurassic era, more than 145 million years ago.
Araucaria araucana outlasted the dinosaurs, but today scientific experts consider the tree endangered. Cultivated monkey puzzle trees grow in gardens and parks around the world, but in the wild the species only grows along the slopes of Patagonia’s volcanoes in Chile and Argentina.
Fires, land clearance, overgrazing and logging have shrunk the temperate forest where the monkey puzzle tree grows.