Audiobook for HOMELAND, read by Wil Wheaton, DRM-free in Itunes! -
I’d really appreciate it if you’d reblog this.
Normally, Itunes will only sell you DRM-crippled audiobooks that are locked to it and to Amazon’s Audible service. However, by listing my independently produced audiobook for HOMELAND (the sequel to Little Brother) as a “spoken word” title, I’ve…
I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we’re reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? So that it will make us happy, as you write? Good Lord, we would be happy precisely if we had no books, and the kind of books that make us happy are the kind we could write ourselves if we had to. But we need the books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us. That is my belief. — Franz Kafka
A cartoon by William Haefeli. For more cartoons from this week’s issue of the magazine: http://nyr.kr/S8nR0r
Written by: Luka Tomas
40 maps that explain the internet -
Where the internet came from, how it works, and how it’s used by people around the world
The internet increasingly pervades our lives, delivering information to us no matter where we are. It takes a complex system of cables, servers, towers, and other infrastructure, developed over decades, to allow us to stay in touch with our friends and family so effortlessly. Here are 40 maps that will help you better understand the internet — where it came from, how it works, and how it’s used by people around the world.
“I came up with the idea of having quotation marks on each side, creating glasses that can trigger the imagination. The shop owner loved the idea, and said, ‘Well why not just put them in production?’ Now, another meaning of quotation marks is that what you see between them, what you read between them, is a quote from somebody else. And if what you see through your glasses is a quote, then you can start looking at things from different perspectives. My spectacles, drawn with clean lines, carry the name: Quotation Marks. They were created not only for their form, but also most emphatically for their content.”
What the Fuck Happened to Indie Rock? -
I blame the Hold Steady because they wrote songs about songs, about being a fan, about identifying as punk or hardcore at one point but that, well, that was a long time ago, when we were young and the Jersey shore breathed hot against our necks or something, about being a white middle class indie dude as though this were something inherently worth documenting.(…)being a fan and a “regular dude” who just liked the sweet jams of his youth had never been romanticized to such a degree.(…)Rock and pop music has always been egocentric. To appeal to teenagers it damn well better be. But now that teenagers truly couldn’t be bothered with rock—particularly of the “indie” variety—rock music, while keeping the narcissism, has applied it to the most relentlessly boring life choices a man can make; good college, good brews, good stories (alive purely in the past tense), good jobs, good living, good death. Indie rock music is now every character in The Graduate.(…)But loving one’s mother and father and memorializing those we purport to love isn’t a brave or radical act of honesty; it’s the bare minimum. In this case the dead don’t get the art they’re said to deserve, but those left behind sure get a nifty album. Real Estate’s album is John Updike as college rock; rural reverie with just enough grey skies to be mistaken as meaningful.(…)OK. That is entirely not fair, to either artist. I’m being a click-bait prick because black metal and hardcore isn’t getting the love my perpetually adolescent self wants for it (…)I don’t want my, our, or your middle class existence justified, I want it burned down and the wretched earth below it salted and its loss to be forever unmourned. I want shame and rage and self-loathing so deep that I can sail a Chrysler as big as a whale across it. I want hatred so over the top that it’s interchangeable with love. I want 24/7 Kraken. At least that’s what I want from bands I listen to. I want total destruction, not bland reinforcement.
Or I want a nice song I can dance to. Dancing is lovely, isn’t it?
The Toxins That Threaten Our Brains -
Leading scientists recently identified a dozen chemicals as being responsible for widespread behavioral and cognitive problems. But the scope of the chemical dangers in our environment is likely even greater. Why children and the poor are most susceptible to neurotoxic exposure that may be costing the U.S. billions of dollars and immeasurable peace of mind.
By age two, almost all of the billions of brain cells that you will ever have are in their places. Except in the hippocampus and one or two other tiny regions, the brain does not grow new brain cells throughout your life. When brain cells die, they are gone. So its initial months of formation, when the brain is most vulnerable, are critical. “During these sensitive life stages,” Grandjean and Landrigan write, exposure “can cause permanent brain injury at low levels that would have little or no adverse effect in an adult.”(…)Scientists enroll pregnant female subjects and carefully record objective measures of environmental exposure, using things like blood samples, urine samples, and maybe even dust and air samples from their homes. After the babies are born, the researchers follow up with them at various points in their childhoods. These studies are expensive and take a long time, but they’re incomparably good at connecting prenatal exposures with lost IQ points, shortened attention span, or emergence of ADHD.(…)Low-income parents might not have access to organic produce or be able to guarantee their children a low-lead household. When it comes to brain development, this puts low-income kids at even greater disadvantages—in their education, in their earnings, in their lifelong health and well-being.