Ada Lovelace, London, England, Senor Frog, Survival

Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

Untangling The Tale Of Ada Lovelace

Stephen Wolfram | 10th December 2015

A deep dive into the life of Ada Lovelace, her dealings with Charles Babbage, and her work writing algorithmic programmes for the Difference Engine. Lovelace glimpsed the possibilities of universal computation in a way that Babbage himself did not; Babbage could see only a particular machine doing a particular job. The substantive development of Lovelace's ideas had to wait on Alan Turing a century later (12,400 words)

Rich London: Mayfairer Than You Might Think

William Porter | Financial Times | 8th December 2015 | | Read with 1Pass

"We are the journalists, the doctors, the credit strategists. We bought the railwaymen out of Clapham and the office cleaners and teachers out of Islington. Now we are outraged that our children cannot repeat the same trick by right. But before identifying inequality as the culprit we need to fill in the silent voices missing from the debate ... If life were fair we would earn $3 a day, up to our knees in water" (2,390 words)

The Luck Of The English

David Frum | Atlantic | 28th December 2015

Admiring review of Robert Tombs’s "spectacular and massive" book, The English and Their History, which celebrates the largest nation in Europe without a state of its own. The English are subsumed into Britain politically, but not emotionally. When English war poets write of dying for their country, that country is England, not Britain. Immigrants to the UK can easily become British — but just try becoming English (3,800 words)

At Señor Frog’s In Times Square

Pete Wells | New York Times | 30th December 2015

"Señor Frog’s is not a good restaurant by most conventional measures, including the fairly basic one of serving food. Getting just half of what you order can be a blessing — if it’s the right half." The Buffalo wings "taste like a mild case of acid reflux". And yet it works. The euphoria is contagious. "I had more fun at Señor Frog’s than at almost any other restaurant that has opened in the last few years" (1,180 words)

Lost At Sea For 14 Months

Jonathan Franklin | Guardian | 7th November 2015

Book extract. The story of Salvador Alvarenga, a fisherman from El Salvador who was caught in a storm off the Mexican coast that swamped his small boat and flooded its motor. He drifted 7,000 miles across the Pacific, washing up 438 days later in the Marshall Islands, after surviving for more than a year on rainwater, raw fish, sea birds, sea turtles, and rotten food salvaged from floating garbage bags (4,500 words)

Video of the day: Grayson Perry's Pretty Little Art Career

What to expect: Grayson Perry discusses a retrospective of his work at Sydney's Museum of Contemporary Art (4'37")

Thought for the day

The obvious is worth proving when this can be done
J.B.S. Haldane

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