On a Dark Desert Highway

Omicron, I can’t believe it, I’ve never been this far away from home.

How Covid stays one step ahead of us.

How one scientist concluded that Covid began with a spillover at Wuhan’s wet market.

Why some people pretend Covid doesn’t exist. ICU is full of the unvaccinated.

How protein-based Covid vaccines could change the pandemic.

Pandemic nostalgia.

28 November 2021 · Events

Rewriting History

AI is starting to have a big real-world impact, hijacking art history and swapping singers’ voices.

Nineties Dad Thrillers—like Yacht Rock, a genre recognised in hindsight.

Jurassic Park but with a cat. Claws.

Emily Zugay redesigns your favourite corporate brands.

People who have unusual—or non-existent—inner voices.

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28 November 2021 · Weblog

Old Hobart Town

The slow march through my old 35mm negatives continues, and has yielded a few more galleries for Detail of Tasmania in the mid-1990s.

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28 November 2021 · Memory

Finding Fukue

Three years ago, Canadian musician Jessica Stuart tried again to find a lost friend in Japan. The resulting twenty-minute short film about her quest is a touching story of brief childhood friendships that echo through a lifetime, the experience of being an outsider, memories meeting the present, how and why we fall out of touch, and what that means for us. Last year Stuart and the filmmakers came together remotely to reflect on the film and its reception.

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28 November 2021 · Film

Firth of Forth

A month ago today I took the kids out to a place J. and I had visited a couple of times when we first moved to Scotland: Culross in Fife, former Royal Burgh and home to a striking ochre-harled palace. We spent an hour walking around the town admiring its seventeenth-century buildings, before driving to nearby Valleyfield Woodland Park for a walk in the woods to admire miscellaneous fungi. We finished the day at Queensferry at sunset, taking in the red glow of the rail bridge while eating some of Edinburgh’s finest ice-cream and fish and chips. It was an enjoyable afternoon, captured in these galleries of Culross, Valleyfield and Queensferry.

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20 November 2021 · Journal

Quids Game

Why are we so exhausted? How to find your focus again.

The study of the mind needs a Copernican shift.

Will AI enable us to talk with whales?

The race to reinvent document editing.

How WeChat became a trap for Uyghurs.

Inside the Facebook Papers. “History will not judge us kindly.” Facebook is an authoritarian state.

If Wes Anderson directed X-Men.

Grievous bodily charm.

The unnatural history of the beach.

Yurts, yoghurt, and Mongolian microbiomes.

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4 November 2021 · Weblog

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