Blog Profile / Neuron Culture


URL :http://daviddobbs.net/smoothpebbles/
Filed Under:Academics / General Science
Posts on Regator:240
Posts / Week:1.2
Archived Since:July 11, 2011

Blog Post Archive

A rowdy, harrowing, vital book: My Times review of ‘Galileo’s Middle Finger,’ by Alice Dreger.

I’ve a review of Alice Dreger’s latest book in this week’s New York Times Sunday Book Review; it just appeared online.   “Galileo’s Middle Finger” is many things: a rant, a manifesto, a treasury of evocative new terms (sissyphobia, autogynephilia, phall-o-meter) and an account of the author’s transformation “from an activist going after establishment scientists […]

The frightening beauty of Sally Mann’s children

Sally Mann on the frightening beauty of her children, in the New York Times Magazine. I find this an especially moving reflection. That’s the critical thing about the family pictures: They were possible only because of the farm, the place. America now hardly has such a thing as privacy, at least not the kind we had at the […]

Gourevitch and Langwiesche on GermanWings crash; play war and real war; Mad Men’s dark bright side.

A Bewildering Crash. Philip Gourevitch at The New Yorker. Just as the brevity of the flight, and the apparent spontaneity of the captain’s decision to leave the cockpit—to stretch a leg? or take a piss? or have a chat? We do not know—tells us that Lubitz could not have planned before he flew that day…

How you read, Alice Munro writes, and war comes home

Here are three of the five items on today’s edition of my semi-regular “Read 2 of these and call me in the morning” mailing. The life, death, and resurrection of Alice Munro’s stories. By Alice Munro. I’m having a delicious time reading Munro’s Selected Stories, 1968–1994 (Vintage, 1997), which I picked up a couple weeks…

The 80 richest people own as much as the poorest 3.5 billion

  Hand it to the rich — no, wait, they already took it. Anyway, they get the job done. From my latest Read 2 roundup, a connection of pieces on wealth paints a dismal picture. (Unless you’re one of those 80). First, from Michael M. Phillips at The Wall Street Journal: In 2010, it would have taken…

The war on Billie Holiday; happy marriages; racist Oregon

  The War on Drugs started with Billie Holiday. – Johann Hari, POLITICO Jazz was the opposite of everything Harry Anslinger believed in. It is improvised, relaxed, free-form. It follows its own rhythm. Worst of all, it is a mongrel music made up of European, Caribbean and African echoes, all mating on American shores. To…

Alice Munro has some very bad news. Plus consciousness and Brits on the dole.

Three of thefive reads from today’s edition of my Read Two newsletter. You can get the other two here or sign up for more. Why can’t the world’s greatest minds solve the mystery of consciousness? They don’t call it the hard problem for nothing. By Oliver Burkeman at The Guardian. The brain, Chalmers began by pointing out, poses all sorts…

The gassy dead. A million-genome march. How to do science.

What to do with the dead? This timeless problem took extra urgency in Victorian London. Excerpted from the book Dirty Old London, by Lee Jackson, in the Guardian. The existence of such gases was undisputed – sextons and undertakers were often called up to “tap” coffins in church vaults, drilling a hole to prevent them…

Brian Williams might well be misremembering rather than lying

It seems incredible that someone might misremember whether they were in a chopper crash. Ford Vox, a physician who specializes in spinal and brain injuries and has treated many people with memory problems, explains how it could happen: You may wonder how its possible that Williams tricked himself into such a vivid false memory told…

Putin has Asperger’s? Pete Etchells says Now wait just a goddamned minute here

  On Wednesday, USA Today ran a report about a US Naval College researcher’s conclusion that “movement pattern analysis” indicated that Vladimir Putin has Asperger’s. The fabulous Pete Etchells, over at the Guardian, shows why we should wonder not only about this idea, but, yet again, about how the Pentagon spends its money. Show More Summary

Changing Styles in the Meta-Narrative of Science

From Derek Thompson at The Atlantic: In a series of papers studying the history of American innovation, Packalen and Bhattacharya indexed every one-word, two-word, and three-word phrase that appeared in more than 4 million patent texts in the last 175 years. To focus their search on truly new concepts, they recorded the year those phrases first appeared in a…

Calvin and Hobbes walk into a bar. Grammar cop says Oh no they didn’t.

From today’s Read 2 You’d think a column arguing that Calvin and Hobbes is the best comic strip ever couldn’t start an argument. Yet it does. Also, Mary Norris rocks. Why Calvin and Hobbes was America’s most profound comic strip. Christopher Caldwell at The Wall Street Journal. Two things set the strip apart. First, the artistry of…

Orchids and Dandelions Abloom – Best of Neuron Culture, #10

Below find #10 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — the final of run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here, posted on the eve of my departure to more homegrown...

Madness, Genius, & Sherman’s Ruthless March – Best of Neuron Culture, #9

Below find #9 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here, posted on the eve of my departure to more homegrown pastures at...

How Darwin Seduced the Christian Asa Gray – Best of Neuron Culture, #7

Below find #7 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here. (Details on my upcoming move are at bottom of the post). This one...

Play that Fking Little 16th Note – Best of Neuron Culture #5

Below find #5 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here. Details on my upcoming move are at bottom of the post). This one...

Best of Neuron Culture #4 – The PTSD Trap

Below find #4 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here. (Details on my upcoming move are at bottom of the post). This post, “The...

Best of Neuron Culture #3 – The Batman Killings, Madness, and Culture

Below find #3 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here. (Details on the move are at bottom of this post). In this...

Best of Neuron Culture #2 – Kill Whitey, It’s the Right Thing to Do

This is #2 in my Best of Neuron Culture Moving Party here at Wired — a run of 10 of my favorite posts from the blog’s stay here on the eve of my departure to another site on June 8....

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