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Monthly Archives: December 2016

The 2016 White House Christmas card

‘Twas an honor to receive a White House Christmas card again this year, and ’twill be an honor not to receive one next year.

New York Times recipes

I think that just about the best food publication there is these days is the New York Times. The weekly feature “What to cook this week” is inspiring and always seasonal. The recipes are sensible and reasonably healthy (though I wonder if other people really make so many desserts — I rarely do). The food […]

The opposite of entropy, and why we’re alive

Fashion, Faith, and Fantasy in the New Physics of the Universe, by Roger Penrose, Princeton University Press, 2016, 502 pages. Into the Cool: Energy Flow, Thermodynamics, and Life, by Eric D. Schneider and Dorion Sagan, The University of Chicago Press, 2005, 362 pages. What Is Life? by Erwin Schrödinger, Cambridge University Press, 18th printing 2016. […]

The new pop-ups and how to defeat them

Remember pop-ups and how obnoxious they were? Then we all got pop-up blockers. But the war wasn’t over. Using Javascript, the anti-social brats who code web pages came up with a new way to assert domination over us: “overlays,” also called “modal windows.” With an overlay, a new window opens up, everything behind it turns […]


Against Democracy by Jason Brennan, Princeton University Press, August 2016, 304 pages. This is certainly one of the most provocative books I’ve read in a while. And now, after the horror of the 2016 election, is a good time to read it. Note that the book was published before the election and that nothing in […]