The Owl of Minerva

31dec2021

The last one of this year!

You write what you see and what you hear with tiny letters squeezed together, squeezed together like ants, which go from your heart to your honorable right side.

The Arabs, they have letters that lie down, get on their knees and rise up completely straight, like spears: it’s a writing that coils and unfurls like the mirage, which is clever as time and proud as combat.

And their writing travels from their honorable right side to their left, because everything ends there: at the heart.

Our own writing, in the Ahaggar, is a writing of nomads, because it is all made up of dashes which are the legs of all the herds. Legs of men, legs of meharis, of zebus, of gazelles, everything that traverses the desert.

And then the crosses determine whether you go to the right or to the left, and the periods, you see, there are a lot of periods. They are the stars that steer us through the night, because we, the Saharans, we don’t know the way, the way that is guided, in turns, by the sun and then the stars.

And we set out from our heart, and we make bigger and bigger circles around it, to enlace the other hearts in a circle of life, like the horizon around your herd and around yourself.
Dassine Oult Yemma

22dec2021

If matter were prone to birthing monsters of this kind, Schwarzschild asked with a trembling voice, were there correlations with the human psyche? Could a sufficient concentration of human will — millions of people exploited for a single end with their minds compressed into the same psychic space — unleash something comparable to the singularity? Schwarzschild was convinced that such a thing was not only possible, but was actually taking place in the Fatherland.
When We Cease to Understand the World, Benjamin Labatut

12dec2021

Robin Sloan’s Notes on Web3 “I do not think Web3 is a desirable or even tolerable path forward for this web right here, but I take its lesson well. “Code wins arguments”, and so do clubs, and cults; time remains to build all three.” The Non-Innovation of Cryptocurrency, straight talk - “There are indeed a lot of fools in this world, but to presume an infinite chain of them as the core of an investment thesis is beyond absurd.”

topher fixed it - “parody alternate endings to beloved but problematic children’s literature”, featuring the fixed ending of The Giving Tree

Read, every day, something no one else is reading. Think, every day, something no one else is thinking. Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do. It is bad for the mind to continually be part of unanimity.
Christopher Morley

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