A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Dan Hirschman, at A (Budding) Sociologist’s Commonplace Blog, wonders about sociological studies of dying fields and institutions. He raises the example of the card game bridge.
  • Far Outliers has a variety of links–1, 2, 3–describing how the Black Sea city of Odessa, in southern Ukraine, was in the 19th century a booming metropolis comparable in many ways to America’s Chicago.
  • Language Hat tackles the possible impending breakthroughs surrounding the decryption of proto-Elamite cuneiform.
  • At Lawyers, Guns and Money, Robert Farley has no truck with The Nation‘s argument that Middle Eastern dictatorships depended critically on American support. Many didn’t; many of the ones being threatened opposed the United States strongly. Cf Libya.
  • Not Rocket Science’s Ed Yong reflects on newly-published studies of old recordings demonstrating that a beluga whale held in captivity was actively trying to mimic human speech.
  • Itching for Eestimaa’s Guistino reflects on the Estonian-Finnish relationship, close but with undercurrents of conflict.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Alex Tabarrok links to a Slate article noting how an unlikely mutation to let humans metabolize milk became wide-spread. The commenters suggest that mutations which allow people to metabolize milk helps maximize the caloric value of cows, at least compared to slaughtering them outright.
  • Normblog links to an article by Iranian expatriate Roya Hoyakian noting how Iran’s revolution quickly led to institutionalized misogyny, and warning that there are signs of this also occurring in the countries changed by the Arab Spring’s revolution.
  • Torontoist’s Steve Kupferman wonders about the effectiveness and utility of The Globe and Mail‘s new paywall, soon to be adopted by the other major Toronto dailies.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy’s David Kopel makes a fair point in pointing out that Syria is Iran’s access to the sea–the Mediterranean Sea, at least.
  • Zero Geography determines the dominant language used for Wikipedia articles for different countries. English is globally dominant, unsurprisingly, but French, Russian, and surprisingly German also do above-average.
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