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All men, at some moment in their lives, feel them selves to be alone. And they are. To live is to be separated from what we were in order to approach what we are going to be in the mysterious future. Solitude is the profoundest fact of the human condition. Man is the only being who knows he is alone, and the only one who seeks out another. His nature — if that word can be used in reference to man, who has “invented” him self by saying “No” to nature — consists in his longing to realize himself in another. Man is nostalgia and a search for communion. Therefore, when he is aware of himself he is aware of his lack of another, that is, of his solitude.
—from The Labyrinth of Solitude
calque /KOWLK/ /kælk/. noun. A loan word. A word borrowed from one language into another, often with some modification. From French calque (a copy), from calquer (to trace by rubbing); from Latin calcare (to press down, to stamp, to tread).[Read more…]
- Get ready! In addition to being the cruelest month, April is also (National) Poetry Month and, hot on the heels of InCoWriMo, (National) Card and Letter Writing Month. I like to celebrate both poetry and snail mail every month, as victims of my epistolary acts can attest to, but make a special effort to combine the two in April. ※ In the US, April is also the official month of: Jazz Appreciation, Parkinson’s Awareness, Cancer Control, Mathematics and Statistics Awareness, Arab American Heritage, Grilled Cheese, Pecans, Soft Pretzels and Soyfoods.
- How scammers employ “plagiarism, book-stuffing, and click-farms” to game the Kindle Unlimited system…some earning up to \$100,000 per month.
- Read or listen to the downright amazing Emily Wilson in conversation with Tyler Cowen on Homer, The Odyssey, The Iliad, Socrates, Silicon Valley’s love of Stoicism, electing politician by lots, using Twitter to get real about translation and much more. ※ Also from Emily Wilson (and barely skirting my self-imposed ban on explicit politics, so don’t @me): What Beto O’Rourke’s love of the Odyssey says about him.
- Dope and Sex and Rock ‘n’ Roll: Slang Lexicography with Jonathon Green: Part I and Part II
- “What does this mean for AI? ¶ First, it suggests there’s no particular reason to study or try to mimic the columnar structure of the primate cortex; bird brains have a different structure and do just as well, neuron for neuron, as we do. ¶ Second, it means that if we ever get AIs that are ‘on the intelligence ladder” — doing the same thing as animal brains — we should expect that their abilities may scale linearly-ish with available computing power. Which dectuples every 5-12 years. Great.'” → Neuron density in humans, birds and other animals—and its implications for development of artificial intelligence.
- “Mike Kelly, curator at the Archives and Special Collections of Amherst College, explores highlights from their Emily Dickinson collection, a huge variety of manuscript forms — from concert programmes to chocolate wrappers…” ※ See also: The complete Emily Dickinson collection at Amherst.
- Millennials have created a form of written English that’s as expressive as spoken English (original title: “Millennials destroyed the rules of written English — and created something better”)
- When I sharpen a pencil, I see a mess. Haruka Misawa saw a method for creating beautiful, delicate, literally unique paper shaving flowers. ※ More information on Misawa’s site.
- Some weird links found me this week: How Russia Fell in Love with Candy Bars Made of Blood & Porcupines are being poached for their stomach content & Judge makes quick decision in Melbourne’s ‘serial farter’ case
- Today in 1959, Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso, better known as the (14th) Dalai Lama—aided by the United States CIA’s Special Activities Division—flees Tibet for India and begins what he describes as “freedom in exile” following China’s brutal defeat of the Tibetan Rebellion that had begun just three weeks earlier. The Dalai Lama’s exile continues as does China’s refusal to recognize Tibetan independence.
About her sweet (I dare you not to feel at least a little happier after watching it) animated short ► Omelette, filmmaker Madeline Sharafian writes, “I wanted to make something that focuses on how meaningful it is to make food for someone you love.”
From the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, ► Real-time MRI imagery of what the tongue and mouth look like when singing (and speaking) ※ Tangentially related: you don’t need an MRI machine to see ► this man lick his own forehead.