Newsletter 185

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

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Writing Worth Reading

[2]Scientology's Messiah

Michael Bywater | New Humanist | 15 December 2010

L. Ron Hubbard, science-fiction writer, launched the last really successful
  religion since Islam. Crazy but clever. "It doesn’t pose a Creator. Just a
  bunch of clever aliens. Whom we can turn back into if we have enough money"

[3]Is It Bad That I Wanted My Kid Aborted?

James Altucher | Altucher Confidential | 19 December 2010

On fatherhood. Brutal. Honest. Moving. "Suddenly there was this tiny US
  citizen lying in bed, who looked like an ugly midget, who didn’t speak
  English, would cry all the time, and would occasionally shit on the floor"

[4]Silencing Speech Is Easy, Protecting It Is Hard

Ethan Zuckerman | My Heart's In Accra | 20 December 2010

New-media scholar discusses denial-of-service attacks as threat to free
  speech. Best advice prior to Wikileaks would have been to move vulnerable
  sites to Tier-1 internet players such as Amazon. That has to be rethought

[5]Finding The Facts About Mao’s Victims

Ian Johnson | NYR Blog | 20 December 2010

Interview with Yang Jisheng, historian of China's 1958-61 famine. "When I
  started I didn’t say I was writing about the Great Famine. I said I wanted
  to understand the history of China’s rural economic policies and grain

[6]More Bullion Than The Swiss Central Bank

Cam Simpson | Business Week | 19 December 2010

Story of the SPDR Gold Trust. Invented by mining companies to broaden market
  for gold. Succeeded beyond wildest dreams. Holds more bullion than Swiss
  central bank. Has helped drive gold price up fourfold. Will it end in tears?

[7]In Pursuit Of The Perfect Brainstorm

David Segal | NYT | 16 December 2010

Extreme outsourcing. If you're a company without an idea, in this age of
  innovation, then consultancies such as Jump Associates will do your thinking
  for you. Cost for brainstorming new products: $200,000 a month and up

[8]Monitoring America

Dana Priest and William Arkin | WP | 20 December 2010

Major investigation into "vast domestic intelligence apparatus", developed
  by  US  since  9/11 in name of fighting terrorism. Police use military
  surveillance technologies. Privacy erodes. US becomes more like UK, Israel

[9]Unreal Genius Of "Football Manager"

Brian Phillips | Deadspin | 10 December 2010

"It's clearly the greatest video game ever created. At every moment there's
  something  odd or wrong, and yet the hours melt away like you're in an
  anaesthetic sleep. It generates a weird, squabbly, unpredictable world"

[10]Words Fail Them

Lucy Kellaway | Economist | 17 December 2010

Corporate communications, especially internally, is shifting from email to
  video. That's going to change business, just as television changed politics.
  Successful managers will have to be more charismatic, appeal to emotions

Topic: Popular Science

Black holes, DIY bio-engineering, aliens and more. Interviews and articles
  from many of the biggest names in Science. No prior knowledge necessary
  [11]Continue reading...

[12]Today on FiveBooks: Mark Bloomfield on Lobbying

About [13]The      Browser: _Editor_, [14]Robert      Cottrell; _Managing
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