May 25, 2007

buffalo versus lions versus crockodiles

May 11, 2007

the harry-est town in america

amazon is tracking which towns are pre-ordering the most copies of the new harry potter book. virginia dominates. the rank is normalized per capita and is misleading since the readership of harry potter varies with age, but it's still interesting to think about why there are such strong trends.

the taxing lyrical trophy

bbc 6 music goes on a quest to find the worst song lyrics. and they do but the competition is tough.

May 04, 2007

There Is No God but Politics

a comparative piece about marx and qutb, the latter being a commonly cited source for arguments in favor of revolutionary islam, and indeed one of the original egyptian muslim brothers. the piece is good but the comparison is limited by two things. first, the power of marxism is not so much in the practical prescriptions it offers but in a fundamentally different worldview of class structure (struggle). the same probably applies to qutb's argument about spirituality and post-colonial islam states. second, proselytization of qutb's thought is fostered by its inherent islamicism and associated common language for discourse, much in contrast to marxism which spoke directly only to 19th century intelligentsia.

May 01, 2007

towards a (google) network computer

check out google browser sync, a firefox extension that syncs your browser history, cookies and passwords across independent sessions. view multiple browser tabs at home one day? automatically open them at work the next. and more. thanks