New Yorker magazine alert thread

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^ totally recommend that

markers, Monday, 3 January 2011 17:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah i read that one the other day, great stuff

ciderpress, Monday, 3 January 2011 17:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

it was interesting, lol scientists

ice cr?m, Monday, 3 January 2011 17:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

i liked this one, seemed like a great premise for movie:

gr8080, Monday, 3 January 2011 20:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

Haven't finished it yet, but I'm digging the Freud, psychiatry, and mental health in China article (subscription needed):

Mordy, Monday, 3 January 2011 21:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

The Patel story was amazing.

dan selzer, Monday, 3 January 2011 21:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah needs a good 3rd act tho.

gr8080, Monday, 3 January 2011 21:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

he only contributed a couple of articles this year but i always enjoy atul gawande's stuff: is probably his best piece this year

they fund ph.d studies, don't they? (Lamp), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

if anyone subscribes then feel free to webmail me the china/freud article kthx

max bro'd (nakhchivan), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

I would, but I can't figure out how to turn it into a pdf or another webmail suitable file.

Mordy, Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:24 (5 years ago) Permalink

just copy and paste the text? or is it a different viewer worries if that's the case

max bro'd (nakhchivan), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

the lehrer article is indeed pretty good and supplies ~evidence~ for my distrust of falsificationism and the inability of some ppl to think of scienctific 'knowledge' subjunctively, tho it does show science self-correcting so i don't read it as a total excoriation of the method

The decline effect is troubling because it reminds us how difficult it is to prove anything. We like to pretend that our experiments define the truth for us. But that’s often not the case. Just because an idea is true doesn’t mean it can be proved. And just because an idea can be proved doesn’t mean it’s true. When the experiments are done, we still have to choose what to believe.

max bro'd (nakhchivan), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

The recent one on the Vatican Library was pretty sweet:

I really like Toobin's diptych on JP Stevens and... the other guy.

nakhchivan, FYI, digital subscription gives you access to this weird applet-y, un-C&P text.

nomar little (Leee), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 01:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

Oh, and that review of the new biography on Sergei Diaghilev was A+++++++ and really wish it was available to all humans:

nomar little (Leee), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 01:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

you can c+p articles from an library institutional subscription, but the evan osnos china thing is from the jan 10 issue which is not on the library wires yet. if you can't get it nakh, bump this thread in a week or two and i'm sure someone from what the fuck am i getting myself into with this grad school stuff will help you out.

caek, Tuesday, 4 January 2011 01:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

Lamp, thanks for the Gawande link.

Kip Squashbeef (pixel farmer), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 01:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

ive been using a friends login for the subscriber stuff for a while and the interface is just so poor i dont usually bother to fuck w/it - seems theyd much rather you read the actual magazine - lol

ice cr?m, Tuesday, 4 January 2011 02:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

^agreed. kind of why i started this thread so i knew which actual magazine to pick up and start reading.

gr8080, Tuesday, 4 January 2011 02:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

p interesting follow-up of sorts on the recent duchenne muscular dystrophy activism article -- they just had a spot f/ clay matthews sponsored by cadillac during the orange bowl

johnny crunch, Tuesday, 4 January 2011 03:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

OK a TA I had in college had a poem published a few issues ago, woah.

nomar little (Leee), Tuesday, 4 January 2011 05:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

the whole Jan. 11 issue is worth picking up, the aforementioned freud in china article is amazing and hilarious, and it also has decent articles about belgium and why stieg larsson is so fucking popular

symsymsym, Monday, 10 January 2011 03:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

i know the concept of 'worth picking up' is still valid, even for subscribers, in translating to 'worth retrieving from the well-intentioned pile of unread NYers', BUT in general it's still worth remembering how insanely valuable subscribing to the magazine is when compared to buying a newsstand copy. like forty bucks, for a year, for it to be mailed to your house, which is the cost of like seven newsstand issues.

schlump, Monday, 10 January 2011 11:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

what is the point of an article like this? -

surowiecki doesn't have a single interesting thing to say here

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 12:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

He's just summarizing the various memes on this now that are being mentioned in newspapers and blogs without asking anyone where things could go from here--what is the future for unionized government employees, will there ever be more unionized private sector employees, how would this help in regards to the inequality differences that have grown since union membership has declined...)

curmudgeon, Monday, 10 January 2011 17:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

His column is like a monthly crib-sheet of conventional wisdom so you can sound like you know what you're talking about when you get invited to a garden party in Stonington

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

what is the point of an article like this?

to summarize and provide some context to a current event or idea its not really about 'saying interesting things' its just a primer? like i know being 1000x smarter than anyone else ever is your thing but i mean the section is called 'talk of the town' so yeah, it exists so the mag's readers can get a vague grip on an issue - the column (which john cassidy also writes some weeks) is supposed to be a gloss? & thats not really all that terrible???

⊚ ⓪ ㉧ ☉ ๏ ʘ ◉ ◎ ⓞ Ⓞ (Lamp), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

honestly tracer maybe u wld get more out of the articles u read if u didnt spend all ur energy snarkily coming up w/ reasons why u wld have done it better

⊚ ⓪ ㉧ ☉ ๏ ʘ ◉ ◎ ⓞ Ⓞ (Lamp), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

dude there are a zillion interesting things happening with unions at the moment (the biggest of which imo is the belated but hugely important efforts to hook up with undocumented immigrants). i'm not sorry for wanting more out of a column called "the financial page"! this article could have been written at any time in the last 15 years - there is zero content to it!

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

i'll also admit that i am rankled by his terminology - "cadillac health plans" etc - and his conclusion that ultimately the reason that lots of people "resent" unions now is because unions have been successful at negotiating good contracts

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

like, if i want economist-lite i'll read newsweek

snark on that one for size

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

there is a cover story public sector unions in the economist this week. dunno why i'm bringing it up though because i haven't read it.

caek, Monday, 10 January 2011 17:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

i'll be interested in reading that, in an "oppo research" kind of way.

i should probably just recuse myself from talking about surowiecki - everything about his steez rankles me and i'm finding it hard to put into words - the "primer" aspect is part of it, but there are people who write primer-type stuff who i love. i dunno!

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 17:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

yah i can see finding the article glib and too-neat "The Great Depression invigorated the modern American labor movement. The Great Recession has crippled it" both oversimplifies and maybe misses the point - i was just sort of baffled that you didnt seem to understand why an article like this gets written

⊚ ⓪ ㉧ ☉ ๏ ʘ ◉ ◎ ⓞ Ⓞ (Lamp), Monday, 10 January 2011 18:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

i guess i still don't! the avg new yorker reader could have dictated this article in their sleep 15 years ago

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 10 January 2011 18:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

so did anyone else read the all of the "20 under 40" pieces? thought it was pretty disappointing. vaguely remember liking one about a guy working on a boat in florida that catches on fire, but not much else.

Moreno, Monday, 10 January 2011 19:04 (5 years ago) Permalink


gr8080, Monday, 10 January 2011 21:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

The psychoanalysis in China article is kind of disappointing imo, mostly because it seems to say that it'll explain why a) psychoanalysis fell out of a favor in the US and most other Western nations, and b) why China then picked it up. The article gets at b) at a certain superficial level, but really doesn't go into a) (which I'm sure has been the subject of a lot of other articles, just would've liked discussion here). Anyway, one of my prof is mentioned in the article, easily the best part of it.

nomar little (Leee), Tuesday, 11 January 2011 00:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

really tapping into the slang here

The teens were from a variety of backgrounds—public and private schools, Manhattan and the outer boroughs—and they wore jeans, collared shirts, and leather jackets. They seemed like normal teen-agers, although they all had the faintly glamorous, knowing aura of city kids. They were discussing slang expressions. “ ‘Calm your tits,’ ” Yasha, an eighteen-year-old from Crown Heights, said, citing an expression that means “Calm down.”

“ ‘Good looks,’ ” said Kyjah, a sixteen-year-old fencer from the Upper West Side, who was wearing lime-green nail polish.

“It means ‘Thanks for looking out,’ ” Alexandria, from Yonkers, said. “Somebody’s like, ‘Oh, you dropped money.’ ‘Oh, good looks.’ ”

“ ‘Gucci’ is the same as ‘Good money,’ ” Yasha said.

“You can say, ‘What’s Gucci?’ ” Kyjah said. “ ‘What’s up?’ ”

Matteo, a sixteen-year-old from Park Slope, said, “ ‘What’s poppin’?’ ”

The teens hesitated. “That’s, like, a retro saying.”

Yasha added, “It’s gang-related.”

Read more

johnny crunch, Tuesday, 11 January 2011 01:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

Does a print subscription also give access to the full digital edition + archives? Their website is suspiciously vague about that.

earnest goes to camp, ironic goes to ilm (pixel farmer), Tuesday, 11 January 2011 18:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yes it does - my international one does anyway.

The baby boomers have defined everything once and for all (Dorianlynskey), Tuesday, 11 January 2011 18:31 (5 years ago) Permalink

yes, you can look at literally every single page of every single issue going back to 1921 or something.

the applet viewer thing is kinda stupid, but functional

gr8080, Tuesday, 11 January 2011 18:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

the david brooks article is so terrible i cant remember the last time i read something that managed to be so offensive w/o actually saying or meaning anything

Lamp, Friday, 14 January 2011 17:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yes, that was ugh.

Zsa Zsa Gay Bar (jaymc), Friday, 14 January 2011 17:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

i am considering writing a disappointed email, is how disappointed i am, right now

Lamp, Friday, 14 January 2011 17:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

I know right! I couldn't even get through it.

I did enjoy the unintentional irony of describing what would commonly be thought of as "people skills" or "intuition" or "emotional intelligence" in ridiculously labored and aspergerian terms.

hey boys, suppers on me, our video just went bacterial (Hurting 2), Friday, 14 January 2011 17:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

The psychoanalysis in China article is kind of disappointing imo, mostly because it seems to say that it'll explain why a) psychoanalysis fell out of a favor in the US and most other Western nations, and b) why China then picked it up. The article gets at b) at a certain superficial level, but really doesn't go into a) (which I'm sure has been the subject of a lot of other articles, just would've liked discussion here). Anyway, one of my prof is mentioned in the article, easily the best part of it.

― nomar little (Leee), Monday, January 10, 2011 7:21 PM Bookmark

Agree with this. Started to raise some interesting implications about what psychoanalysis could mean for China as well, but then wastes way too much ink on here-and-now descriptions of various conferences and meetings, which new yorker writers love to bore us with.

hey boys, suppers on me, our video just went bacterial (Hurting 2), Friday, 14 January 2011 17:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

freud/china piece nakh

caek, Friday, 14 January 2011 17:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

The David Brooks article was so poor that I kept double checking to see if it was in fact fiction and supposed to be ironic. Or, failing that, if it was nonfiction and supposed to be a parody.

Virginia Plain, Friday, 14 January 2011 18:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

I knew the Brooks article would settle the argument.

Gus Van Sotosyn (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 14 January 2011 18:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

I had trouble just imagining people named Harold and Erica being the same age.

Zsa Zsa Gay Bar (jaymc), Friday, 14 January 2011 18:30 (5 years ago) Permalink

it's kind of like a version of pascal's wager, only with something that's actually possible instead of hell/heaven.

Same could be said of go all warming, look how well we've done in mitigating that threat.

remember when that AI beat a turing test last year


ledge, Saturday, 21 November 2015 03:44 (2 months ago) Permalink

go all warming

Alternatively, global

ledge, Saturday, 21 November 2015 03:45 (2 months ago) Permalink

With a purposefully constrained input range and clearly defined objective (win at chess, win at Jeopardy!, pass the Turing Test, navigate a highway) computing is capable of amazing things. Regardless of horsepower, a "superintelligence" that could possibly be a greater existential threat to humankind than climate change, nuclear war or an errant space rock would demand a cosmic leap in information processing techniques so that it doesn't *ever* throw an uncaught exception and fatally shit the bed. Bostrom's a head case.

Kind of like I was saying on the presidential race thread, these people get profiled and written about and people get drawn in because on one level it can be interesting to listen to a sufficiently intelligent nutjob explain their rationale for moving to cloud cuckoo country, but on another level I think writers of these types of pieces (not to mention their conde nast taskmasters, and their readers) are completely sick and tired of climate science, there's no news other than "it's not looking good" and readers are frankly bored by it. So space tycoons and futurist lunatics are great for filling up 17 pages in a magazine. It's not that nobody cares about what's actually most likely going to kill us, we just all have fatigue and need distractions, and a cat like Bostrom fits nicely into the But What If? feature category.

El Tomboto, Saturday, 21 November 2015 03:54 (2 months ago) Permalink

thanks for the new DN there

Eugene Goostman (forksclovetofu), Saturday, 21 November 2015 05:50 (2 months ago) Permalink

Had my suspicions tbh

ledge, Saturday, 21 November 2015 08:52 (2 months ago) Permalink

at the risk of being facile, computers aren't humans. which is to say, that when computers make mistakes, they are not the same kind of mistakes computers make. machine intelligence is first and foremost logical, so for instance you would never see a computer which supports donald trump. a computer might, on the other hand, award gaz coombes the mercury prize. a sentient machine also has a non-trivial chance of going all forbin project on us.

rushomancy, Saturday, 21 November 2015 11:01 (2 months ago) Permalink

I was thinking about this (and having a conversation with someone else about it) today, and bear in mind I barely graduated high school, but:

• All machines are, at this point, reactive in nature. They require external input - stimulus/response. Hence "garbage in, garbage out." So true AI would have to be much more active than reactive, and that's a leap computers haven't made yet.

• Physical logistics are not on superAI's side. Let's say a computer gets smart enough, and active enough, that it wants to build a robot army and kill all humans. There are lots and lots of processes and steps along the way - like, say, mining ore and smelting steel to make the robot army - that can be interrupted. The whole "superAI runs the world" thing only works on a whiteboard. The physical world will intrude. (Right down to the point of "Hey, this computer's getting awfully mouthy - Joe, kick the plug out of the wall, will ya?")

the top man in the language department (誤訳侮辱), Saturday, 21 November 2015 16:01 (2 months ago) Permalink

the improvements in recent years have been about multiple cores on a chip, not making those cores run faster. That's harder to take advantage of.

Yeah, I have heard people say in seminars lately that we've built an entire theoretical apparatus on "design an algorithm to perform task X in the fewest number of operations" and that we're going to have to rethink everything to minimize number of TRANSMISSIONS rather than number of operations; operations are stupidly cheap now, but physically getting the results of those operations to interact with each other is the bottleneck (in time, cost, even heat.)

Guayaquil (eephus!), Saturday, 21 November 2015 16:06 (2 months ago) Permalink

re physical infrastructure, I think the idea is that because all the electronics in the world are just a few years out from all being wirelessly connected to each other, the superintelligence would take control of our own infrastructure, and most importantly, all the Minuteman silos and SSBNs (so basically the Forbin Project crossed with Maximum Overdrive).

El Tomboto, Saturday, 21 November 2015 16:07 (2 months ago) Permalink

This discussion has reached a mass where it should probably take place on an AI thread, but of course, it never will. This typifies what separates ilxors from machine intelligence.

Aimless, Saturday, 21 November 2015 17:01 (2 months ago) Permalink

There are lots and lots of processes and steps along the way - like, say, mining ore and smelting steel to make the robot army - that can be interrupted.

doesn't really have to be that complicated. unlock the safeguards on biological weapons storage, say. even just shutting down the power grid would make modern society fall apart pretty quickly.

mookieproof, Saturday, 21 November 2015 20:24 (2 months ago) Permalink

Why wouldn't that be a good thing tho? This hypothetical AI might have a point, is anyone abt to claim humanity's all that great?

albvivertine, Saturday, 21 November 2015 22:42 (2 months ago) Permalink

4 weeks pass...

I want to start a pool to buy the biggest possible print of this for my house. And then my office. And then a spare in case one of the other ones gets damaged.

El Tomboto, Saturday, 19 December 2015 20:56 (1 month ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

i think maybe ben lerner is v stupid ?

bloat laureate (schlump), Saturday, 9 January 2016 22:13 (4 weeks ago) Permalink

He wrote a bad article, and is apparently mind blown by the very idea that art objects are mediated.

pizza rolls are a food that exists (silby), Saturday, 9 January 2016 22:59 (4 weeks ago) Permalink

The novel belongs to the genre of metafiction. The first-person narrator is a 33-year-old writer who lives in New York City. A successful novelist, he has recently been diagnosed with a heart condition that could prove fatal.[2] The book deals with love, art, city, illness, having children, and writing.

The first-person narrator of the novel, Adam Gordon, is an early 20s American poet participating in a prestigious fellowship in Madrid circa 2004. The stated goal of his fellowship is long narrative poem highlighting literature's role in the Spanish Civil War. Gordon, however, spends his time reading Tolstoy, smoking spliffs, and observing himself observing his surroundings.

Kiarostami bag (milo z), Sunday, 10 January 2016 00:49 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

adrian chen, new staff writer

mookieproof, Thursday, 21 January 2016 18:26 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

so sweet

flopson, Thursday, 21 January 2016 19:57 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

that piece he did on the woman who left the westboro Baptist church was dece (also was riding high on the "most popular" tab for a while) so makes a lot of sense

Cornelius Pardew (jim in glasgow), Thursday, 21 January 2016 20:05 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

i was surprised he didn't get scooped up by somewhere after leaving gawker, guess he wanted to go freelance to beef up his cv before hitting the big leagues

flopson, Thursday, 21 January 2016 20:09 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

it is possible that i am conflating New Writers with Existing Writers Recently Afforded Illustrated Masthead Avatars but they seem to have like ten, new, good writers, recently, for the blog.

bloat laureate (schlump), Friday, 22 January 2016 02:28 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

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