What I Read This Week - 27th August

I guess I should really start calling this "what I read last week", but today's a bank holiday and it seems to belong to no week in particular. - Versions of Stoppard (Victoria Glendinning at Intelligent Life)

“Most of us are impersonating a version of ourselves.”

- Attentional Austerity (Michael Sacasas)

It’s sometimes assumed that in the world the Internet created, those who excel at multi-tasking and endlessly partitioning their attention will have the advantage. I’m not so sure.

- Field Notes (Sam Stephenson at The Paris Review)

Languor’s Latin origins imply a dreaminess or relief through weariness or muted suffering. It’s a word that fits the origins of Southern blues or Appalachian string music, and it fits baseball, too, a sport of failure. Championship teams still lose 40 percent of their games. Hitters that succeed only 30 percent of the time make the Hall of Fame. It’s a sport in which the most successful players wear looks of rote boredom. They exercise a loose, clear-headed ambivalence necessary to perform their reactive, elegant split-second craft at the highest levels.

- Can a Computer Tell Us What Makes Paris Look Like Paris? (Rebecca J. Rosen at The Atlantic)

You can't evoke Paris with just the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe. You need to find the distinct visual cues that emerge block after block, street after street.