Good Morning, RVA: Bikes, circles, sellouts, menus, and earthly delights

Finally! The wind has died down.

Good morning, RVA! It’s 44 °F, and what’s this? A forecast that does not include gales of wind to steal our hats and throw playground sand in our eyes?! It’s true! Just a bit of regular wind, highs in the 60s, and plenty of sunshine. Spring, sprang, sprung!

Water cooler

The bike share is coming, so you should fill out this pre-launch survey to help them get the placement of the stations right. If you’re all, “Awha? What’s a bike share?,” then read this article.

Traffic circle haters rejoice! DPW will be installing new yield signs all over the place. A super important takeaway from that article which answers a long standing argument in my office: State law requires that you only drive to the right around a circle. This seems obvious to me (clearly not to many, many drivers), but was not the case until 2013! Also, read the quote at the bottom of the piece which is intended to be a sick burn on traffic circles but exactly describes how the circles are intended to work.

Big beer news from yesterday: Devils Backbone Brewing Company has been bought by Anheuser-Busch. DBB joins Goose Island, Elysian, and Breckenridge as significant craft breweries to get sucked up into the beer mothership. This news precipitated a lot of angry internet comments about selling out, but I say congratulations to them. If the Vienna Lager–which will still probably be made in Virginia by people living in Virginia–tastes the same, I will still probably drink it in significant quantities.

In other fermented forthcomings, Annie Tobey brings you significant quantities of the region’s other booze news.

Richmond’s Spring Restaurant Week begins next week, and here are the vast majority of the menus for you to explore and drool over. There are lots of new participating spots this year, so maybe now’s the time if you’ve been waiting to try something out. Be sure to make a reservation soon!

North Carolina’s governor is trying to walk back the discriminatory bathroom law he literally just signed. PayPal, the NBA, and Deutsche Bank have all decided to abandon plans in the state.

Lose a nontrivial part of your morning zooming around this super high-res version of Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights. Dude sure liked / hated butts–make sure you listen to the interpretation of the “buttock song.”

Also, happy birthday to Thomas Jefferson.


NHL Stanley Cup playoffs begin today!

  • Squirrels picked up a win last night over Reading, which is good because for a second there I was having flashbacks to last season’s epic streak of losses. They finish up tonight at 6:35 PM before returning to Richmond for the true home opener tomorrow.
  • Nats beat the Braves and are now 5-1. The series continues tonight at 7:05 PM.

This morning’s longread

Internet mapping turned a remote farm into a digital hell

Unintended (terrible) consequences!

As any geography nerd knows, the precise center of the United States is in northern Kansas, near the Nebraska border. Technically, the latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates of the center spot are 39°50′N 98°35′W. In digital maps, that number is an ugly one: 39.8333333,-98.585522. So back in 2002, when MaxMind was first choosing the default point on its digital map for the center of the U.S., it decided to clean up the measurements and go with a simpler, nearby latitude and longitude: 38°N 97°W or 38.0000,-97.0000.

As a result, for the last 14 years, every time MaxMind’s database has been queried about the location of an IP address in the United States it can’t identify, it has spit out the default location of a spot two hours away from the geographic center of the country. This happens a lot: 5,000 companies rely on MaxMind’s IP mapping information, and in all, there are now over 600 million IP addresses associated with that default coordinate. If any of those IP addresses are used by a scammer, or a computer thief, or a suicidal person contacting a help line, MaxMind’s database places them at the same spot: 38.0000,-97.0000.

This morning’s Instagram

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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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