Newsletter 942

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

Aspiring Africa

Anonymous | Economist | 1 March 2013

"Never in the half-century since it won independence from the colonial powers has Africa been in such good shape. Its economy is flourishing. Most countries are at peace. Ever fewer children bear arms and record numbers go to school. HIV infections have fallen by up to three-quarters. This is a welcome transformation, but it is still incomplete"

We Found Our Son In The Subway

Peter Mercurio | New York Times | 28 February 2013

Perfect only-in-New-York story. Playwright's partner finds new-born in 8th Ave station. Goes to family court to give evidence. Judge suggests he adopt the baby. "While Danny had patience and selflessness galore, I didn’t know how to change a diaper, let alone nurture a child. But here was fate, practically giving us a baby. How could we refuse?"

Could The Ancient Romans Have Built A Digital Computer?

Hunter Scott | Hunter Scott | 27 February 2013

Yes, though the power supply would have posed a problem. They knew how to make wire, and how to work iron. They knew how to work glass, though not how to make vacuum tubes. They could have built relays, to judge from their jewellery. Lead sulfide would make a good natural semiconductor. Regular iron would do for core memory

Regarding This "Brooklyn" Everyone Keeps Talking About

David Wondrich | Esquire | 27 February 2013

Notes on thirty years of living in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. Was a rackety, dispirited, dangerous neigbourhood. Now a poster-child for urban renewal. "There are fewer tattoos and sleeveless T-shirts than in Williamsburg, but they're far from scarce. The restaurants are clever, the bars old and friendly. Jonathan Lethem has written novels about it"

Modern Meadow: 3D-Printed Meat And Leather

Andras Forgacs | Reddit | 27 February 2013

Q&A with CEO of company that grows cultured meat from cells. A bit icky, but no more so than the regular meat trade when seen close up. "No blending of different species. Pig stays pig. Cow stays cow. We use multiple cell types from each animal but staying with the same animal. An advantage of this approach is that it can ensure purity"

China Should Abandon North Korea

Deng Yuwen | Financial Times | 27 February 2013

Wow. Chinese Communist Party scholar publishes signed article in Western newspaper saying that North Korea has lost its value as a geopolitical ally for China, that the Kim regime is poised for collapse, and that North Korea might turn its nuclear weapons on China. Either a very deep game is being played, or Pyongyang has cause to worry

Video of the day: John Rink Discusses And Plays Chopin

Thought for the day:

"Society cannot endure if it tolerates all disobedience; it does not follow, however, nor is there evidence, that it will collapse if it tolerates some" — Ronald Dworkin

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