No new ESPN content this week other than Klawchat; I’ve been working on my top 50 free agents ranking, which goes up some time after the World Series ends, and there’s a 2015 draft ranking in the editing queue up in Bristol.
Lots of links this week…
- Isaac Asimov was my favorite writer when I was a kid; I devoured his Foundation series, and taught myself algebra from his now out-of-print Realm of Algebra book, which is probably still sitting in the library of my junior high school. MIT Technology Review has a previously unpublished essay he wrote in 1959, asking how people get new ideas.
- A delightful BBC News piece commemorating what would have been the 100th birthday of mathematician, writer, and puzzle-master Martin Gardner, including ten puzzles for you to tackle.
- Last week’s Saturday five included some links to stories about the #GamerGate imbroglio, and reader Liz F sent along another story, from TechCrunch, that tries to look at the story as two separate controversies under one banner.
- From a Rwandan Dump to the Halls of Harvard. Of course, the headline could have just said “Harvard,” but “the Halls of Harvard” sounds so much more Norse-mythological.
- Via Richard Deitsch on Twitter, a powerful post from writer Jeff Benedict on getting his sister out of an abusive marriage. Not for the faint of heart.
- Economist Paul Krugman takes aim at Amazon’s monopsony in e-book retailing. I sort of agree, and I sort of disagree. It’s a complicated question because there’s not much evidence Amazon is harming consumers, which is usually the standard for evaluating anticompetitive practices.
- Vegas Watch summarized my perplexing Twitter conversation with RJ Bell, where I couldn’t seem to get an answer to my question about whether record against the spread (ATS) has any predictive value. (It doesn’t.)
- Biochemist and food writer (and frequent Good Eats guest star) Shirley Corriher talks food science with NPR’s The Salt.
- The Verge looks at how crappy “satire” sites are spreading Ebola panic. Read it if only to learn what sites you should blacklist from your own posts.
- And finally, a very clever commercial, from Finland, that spoofs the country’s tradition of death-metal artists to sell … well, you’ll see.