Adele, Stripe, History of Science, Americans, Jean Tirole

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

The Beatles, Schubert, And Adele

Ian Jack | Guardian | 5th December 2015

In 1963 a London Times music critic called The Beatles the "best songwriters since Schubert". The judgement, bold in its day, has aged well. Does any more recent songwriter have the genius of Schubert — who, though his audience may skew older these days, died at just 31? Adele comes "remarkably close", lyrically at least. Her writing "springs from the same youthful kind of agitation, depression and longing" (1,300 words)

Patrick Collison Explains Stripe

John Collison | Blitzscaling | 28th November 2015

Transcript. Youthful CEO of payments start-up Stripe gives masterclass on management to Stanford students. "We’re relatively conventionally organized. There’s always a temptation to reconceive the nature of humanity and social structure; you should really try to discourage that inner voice. Do you really want to add your novel organizational ontology as an additional business risk factor?" (3,700 words)

Matthew Cobb On The History Of Science

Jo Marchant | Five Books | 4th December 2015

Zoologist discusses five books for understanding the history of science, including The Scientific Revolution, by Stephen Shapin. "What Shapin has done in this book is to question the narrative scientists employ when they project what they think they do today on to the past, when people behaved very differently ... If you imagine that Newton was like Brian Cox, you won’t really understand what was going on" (5,100 words)

How To Be An American

Eric Liu | Democracy | 11th November 2015

Can we capture the knowledge essential for 21st-century American life in 5,000 words and phrases, as E.D. Hirsch did for 20th-century America in Cultural Literacy? Hirsch put Anglo-American culture and history at the centre of his canon, reflecting the balance of power thirty years ago. Any new "story of us" will have to connect many cultures and histories equally, for an America which is no longer so white (4,530 words)

French Lessons From Jean Tirole

Jean Tirole | Financial Times | 4th December 2015 | | Read with 1Pass

Nobel prize-winning economist talks about France. The quality of life and the quality of institutions is still good. But a continuing high rate of immigration threatens more social problems unless the newcomers have decent job prospects. The government is over-borrowed. The State is too big. A victory for the National Front in the next presidential election could ruin everything (850 words)

Video of the day: The Shoemaker

What to expect: Documentary. Man quits after 25 years working for the phone company, retrains as a shoe designer (5'51")

Thought for the day

The solutions need to be simpler than the problems
Nicholas Nassim Taleb

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