A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘popular literature

[BLOG] Some Saturday links

  • The Big Picture shares photos from the Nice terror attack.
  • blogTO notes that it might soon be illegal to talk and text in Toronto.
  • City of Brass’ Aziz Poonawalla responds to Gingrich’s call for a deportation of sharia-believing Muslims.
  • Crooked Timber considers the prospects for the United Kingdom.
  • Language Hat looks at the problems involved with translating Chinese poetry.
  • The LRB Blog looks at third-wave jihadism.
  • The Map Room Blog examines the most popular walking routes in the United Kingdom.
  • Towleroad notes that Trump’s vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence wanted to divert funding for HIV/AIDS towards gay conversion therapy.
  • Window on Eurasia notes that the dying-off of the old generation of people in the former Soviet Union will not necessarily leave younger pro-market ones.

[BLOG] Some Tuesday links

  • Antipope hosts a guest blogger with an interesting vision for a new iteration of cyberpunk.
  • Beyond the Beyond’s Bruce Sterling shares a link to a report on Saudi Arabian water resources.
  • Centauri Dreams shares a study of nearby brown dwarf WISE 0855.
  • Crooked Timber notes the amoral technocracy of the Speers.
  • Dangerous Minds shares vintage postcards from a century ago warning against the threat of feminism.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper examining the import of carbon to oxygen ratios in exoplanet formation.
  • ImaGeo notes the discovery of new dwarf planet RR245.
  • Joe. My. God. notes that Australians scientists have declared an end to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in that country, conditionally.
  • Language Hat links to a site for learning sign languages.
  • Language Log tests an alleged Finnish joke about Russian occupations for linguistic plausibility.
  • The LRB Blog notes that Prime Minister Theresa May is not a victory for feminism.
  • Marginal Revolution notes the depopulation of Japan and looks at Britain’s low productivity.
  • Otto Pohl announces his impending move to academia in Kurdistan.
  • The Russian Demographics Blog looks at Ukrainian emigration.
  • Window on Eurasia suggests Russian austerity will hurt Russia’s regions.

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • James Bow writes about the importance to him of Toronto’s Bakka-Phoenix bookstore.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze considers the search for the debris disk of HR 8799.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes that, early in the solar system’s history, Venus may have been much better for life than Earth.
  • The Russian Demographics Blog shares a map noting the names for “tea” in different European languages.
  • Savage Minds considers the ethnography of danger and risk for tourists at the Rio Olympics.
  • Window on Eurasia notes the degeneration of the Donbas conflict.
  • The Financial Times‘ The World notes Obama’s expressed concern for Polish democracy.

[WRITING] “Sigmoid”, by Peter Watts

Peter Watts has a wonderful, terrible short story up at his blog.

I cried for the Chimp, once.

I was there for his birth. I saw the lights come on, listened as he found his voice, watched him learn to tell Sunday from Kai from Ishmael. He was such a fast learner, and an eager one; back then, barely out of my own accelerated adolescence and not yet bound for the stars, I felt sure he’d streak straight into godhood while we stood mired in flesh and blood.

I didn’t feel the slightest hint of envy. How could I? He seemed so happy: devoured every benchmark, met every challenge, anticipated each new one with a kind of hardwired enthusiasm I could only describe as voracious. Once, rounding a corner into some rough-hewn catacomb, I came upon a torrent of bots swirling in perfect complex formation: a school of silver fish, in the center of Eri‘s newly-seeded forest. The shapes I glimpsed there still make my head hurt, when I think about them.

“Yeah, we’re not quite sure what that is,” one of the gearheads said when I asked her. “He does it sometimes.”

“He’s dancing,” I told her.

More there.

Written by Randy McDonald

July 8, 2016 at 7:45 pm

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Beyond the Beyond’s Bruce Sterling mourns the death of Alvin Toffler.
  • The Big Picture shares images of the Istanbul airport attack.
  • blogTO notes Toronto’s recent Trans March was the largest in world history.
  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly interviews memoirist Plum Johnson.
  • Centauri Dreams considers the determination of distances to dim stars and looks at the total energies likely to be used in interstellar travel and interplanetary colonization.
  • Crooked Timber notes the ordered recount in Austria’s presidential elections and advocates for anti-militarism.
  • D-Brief notes the exciting discoveries of Ceres, and observes that ancient tombs may have doubled as astronomical observatories.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze considers where warm Jupiters form, considers the stability of complex exoplanet systems, and notes a high-precision analysis of solar twin HIP 100963.
  • The Dragon’s Tales wonders if the shape of Martian sand dunes indicate a denser Martian atmosphere a bit more than four billion years ago.
  • The Everyday Sociology Blog considers evictions and poverty in the United States.
  • Inkfish notes that different honeybees seem to have different personalities.
  • Language Hat notes the import of Maltese in Mediterranean history.
  • Language Log talks about Sino-Japanese.
  • Lovesick Cyborg shares the doubts of polled Americans with the viability of virtual lovers.
  • The LRB Blog shares an article supporting Corbyn.
  • The Map Room Blog notes that San Francisco was literally built on buried ships.
  • Marginal Revolution notes the collapse of Greek savings and looks at Euroskepticism’s history in the United Kingdom.
  • Steve Munro updates readers on Union-Pearson Express ridership.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer thinks the Netherlands Antilles offer useful models to the United Kingdom, and is confused by a claim that that bias against Mexican immigrants does not exist when the data seems to suggest it does.
  • Torontoist goes into the life of conservative Protestant newspaper publishing Black Jack Robinson.
  • Transit Toronto notes that in a decade, GO Trains will connect Hamilton to Niagara Falls.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy argues against using the Brexit vote to argue against referenda.
  • Window on Eurasia notes the Russian deployment of military forces to the Belarus border, looks at Tatarstan’s concern for its autonomy, observes the changing demographics of Ukraine, and notes the Russian debate over what sort of European Union collapse they would like.
  • Arnold Zwicky remembers his father through ephemera.

[URBAN NOTE] “Acclaimed Toronto author Austin Clarke dead at 81”

Sad news, reported by the Toronto Star‘s Murray Whyte.

Austin Clarke, the acclaimed Toronto-based novelist of books such as the 2002 Giller Prize-winning The Polished Hoe, died early Sunday morning after a long illness. He was 81.

Clarke’s passing was confirmed by Patrick Crean, his long-time friend and former publisher. He is survived by four daughters, a son and his former wife, Betty.

Clarke, who was born in Barbados, moved to Toronto in 1955 to study at the University of Toronto. A handful of brief digressions aside, he never left, evolving here into a frank and forthright literary voice and a champion of black rights.

But he was leery of taking Canadian citizenship, acquiring it only in 1981, explaining later that “I was not keen on becoming a citizen of a society that regarded me as less than a human being.”

Indeed, Clarke’s observations of the splintering of Canadian society in the ’50s and ’60s gave voice to a new version of a country in its earliest stages of becoming.

Written by Randy McDonald

June 27, 2016 at 8:15 pm

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly reports from Washington D.C.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper looking at the stellar wind of Tau Böotis and the impact of Tau Böotis b on this.
  • Language Log considers the exact grammatical role played by Brexit.
  • Language Hat links to a report on a museum of language in Paris.
  • The Map Room Blog notes that the website Atlas Obscura is set to produce a book.
  • Marginal Revolution notes the paradox of a Cornwall dependent on EU funds voting against the European Union.
  • Steve Munro looks at the problems of fare integration in regional transit.
  • The Planetary Society Blog shares multimedia highlights of the launch of China’s new Long March 7 rocket.
  • Peter Rukavina looks at a new road shortcut in suburban Charlottetown.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at institutional chaos in the Moscow area and suggest Cossack mobilization risks a North Caucasian countermobilization.
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