Newsletter 871

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

Best of the Moment

Lottery Winner Jack Whittaker's Losing Ticket

David Samuels | Businessweek | 13 December 2012

In 2002, Jack Whittaker, a 55-year-old contractor from West Virginia, won $315m in the lottery. It got him into the Guinness Book of World Records for the biggest amount of money won in a lottery. And it ruined his life Comments (

Why Making Robots Is So Darn Hard

Gary Marcus | New Yorker | 13 December 2012

"Computer processors keep getting faster and faster. But the motors and actuators that move robots aren’t improving nearly as fast. Battery technology, too, is key — moving quickly, but not quite keeping pace with Moore" Comments (

How Older Parenthood Will Upend American Society

Judith Shulevitz | New Republic | 6 December 2012

We are having our children much later than we used to. Both men and women. And we are only very slowly becoming aware of the consequences Comments (

Life Of A Writer, Reviewed

Dwight Garner | NYT | 4 December 2012

Richard Bradford gets savaged for his biography of Martin Amis. "Like watching a moose try to describe a leopard, using only its front hooves." If we ever publish "The Browser Anthology Of Hatchet Jobs", this will be in it Comments (

More Notes On Humans And Animals

Justin Smith | Berfrois | 12 December 2012

Modern Western culture sets humanity above and apart from other animals in a way probably without historical precedent. "Animals, now conceptualized as pure commodities, exist entirely outside the bounds of moral community" Comments (

17 Things I Learned From Reading The Economist's 'The World In 2013'

Mark Leibovich | NYT | 12 December 2012

Iran and the eurozone could, in different ways, blow up. But could's the operative word; not even those smart people at the Economist know for sure. They do think Castro's going to die though. And it'll be a big year for neutrinos Comments (

FiveBooks Interview


Sophie King on Creative Writing

The author and creative writing teacher tells us where to go for tips on finding one's voice, grabbing readers' attention and getting published Read on (


Conflict in Syria

The Syrian conflict is causing terrible destruction and loss of life. This report charts how protests against the Assad regime descended into a bitter war  Read on (

Reader Recommendations

@RottenInDenmark RT @longreads "Homies: What Happened to Everyone I Went to Middle School With?" #browsings ( More like this (

Book of the Day

Book of the Day (

Arctic Dreams  by Barry Lopez

Robert Macfarlane says ( : "It’s an investigation into how we imagine place and how place imagines us. It changed my life and really made me become a writer, if any one book did" FiveBooks Archive (

Video of the Day

Man Of Steel


New Superman film trailer. With an unexpected dose of the New Testament More videos (

Quote of the Day

Teller, on choice (

“If you are given a choice, you believe you have acted freely. This is one of the darkest of all psychological secrets”

More quotes (

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