Marlon Brando in ‘The Wild One’, 1953
"There’s a principle in game theory known as min-maxing, meaning that in any given system, behaviors will evolve that maximize gain for minimum effort. This means that a lot of thought has to be put in to bulletproofing a new system against min-maxing. Take the internet, for example. The designers of the internet thought it was going to be this wonderful open community. They were expecting it to be nothing but unicorns shitting rainbows. But in come the min-maxers with their spam, bot nets, and viruses."
Sometimes Getting Along Comes Down To How You Say ‘Gravy’
In the hectic days before we went live one year ago (hooray!), we somehow missed the news of the passing, at age 91, of John Gumperz — a hugely influential linguist who contributed reams of research on the ways people from different cultures communicate. Had we been paying attention, we could have highlighted a story from Gumperz’s studies that serves as a useful demonstration of why code-switching can be both a potent metaphor and a necessary skill.
It’s a story about workplace discrimination. It’s a story about missed cultural signals. It’s a story about gravy.
A bottle of red made with data.
Finding the perfect wine used to mean going to a good wine store, discussing your future meal with a sales person and trying to remember the wine the next time you buy. Now all you have to do is go to a website, like that of Bordeaux-based fine wine merchant Millesima. With data, they can help any customer, anywhere in the world, select the right bottle, for the right meal, the right climate, time of year, you name it. Plus you don’t have to soak off the label to remember the name and vintage when you want to buy it again. Explore more stories →
“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” — John Muir
Heathland (by Nico Mueller)