- Hillary Clinton is a big fan of Twitter. But some Republicans on Capitol Hill, not so much. News of this stand-
off emerged after a couple of young Twitterati from the State Department made waves with their widely followed tweets during a State visit to Syria. The fuddy-duddies from the GOP don’t think statecraft and diplomacy work well when doled out in 140 character parcels. Well, statecraft and diplomacy don’t seem to have worked much when doled out in 140 page manuscripts either, so it might be time to try something new. Tweet on!
- Google’s little dust-up with China stirred up much ado about a click this week. China refused to re-license Google if it continued to automatically redirect users to its Hong Kong-based site in order to avoid Chinese censors. Google’s “compromise” to keep its Chinese market share while appearing to not sacrifice its commitment to free speech was to replace the auto redirect with…wait for it…a NON-auto redirect! (Instead of being automatically sent to the censor-free Hong Kong site, users who get on Google in China will now have to click on a link on the search page to get to censor-free surf space.) Is there someplace where I can place a (very large) bet that the People’s Republic is not going to fall for that?
- Ever since he asked, “Is Google was making us stupid?” back in 2008, Nicholas Carr has gone on and on about how the internet is turning us all into dullards with severe attention deficit problems. One of my favorite scientists, Steven Pinker, explained why that’s nonsense in his masterly op-ed in the NYT earlier this month. And Steven Pinker is always right.
- So you’ve always wanted to read James Joyce’s Ulysses, but held yourself back on account of the highly-difficult-to-parse plot and language? Don’t fret because soon, there will be an iPad app for that. Well, for a cartoon version of the novel, anyway. And a very sanitized version, at that. Turns out, Steve Jobs and his Apple are total prudes. They insisted on the app’s developers covering up all the graphics that depict the various physical activities that the novel’s characters indulge in – the sort of thing that got the book banned in the 1930s. Apple can censor its apps all it wants but it can’t censor the internet – go check out Ulysses “seen” in all it’s uncensored glory.
- And last, but perhaps most important, Starbucks has finally gotten with the program and starting today, is offering free wi-fi.