R. Stephen Berry— Thermodynamics is a beautiful illustration of how needs of very practical applications can lead to very basic, general concepts and relations, very much in contrast to the view that the practical and applied facets of a science are consequences of prior basic studies. Thermodynamics teaches us that
Lucas Kello— Every historical era begins with a revolution: it comes of age when revolution becomes the new normal. The Reformation began when a disaffected Augustinian friar asked, What authority has the Pope? It achieved its peak when the schism in Christianity became a source not of religious war but
Marcia Bartusiak- Walk into an open field on a clear, moonless night. Overhead, sparkling stars are sprinkled across the sky. All of them seem equidistant from you—and no one else—and you are lulled into imagining yourself at the center of the universe. For nearly five hundred years, astronomers have struggled to
Michelle Baddeley— How did Donald Trump manage to become president? If we look to psychology for an explanation, we can understand Trump as the populist leader of a modern-day tribe of voters. These voters define themselves according to a specific set of attitudes. On social media, they have a level
Markus Krajewski— When Amazon introduced the world to a black, cylindrical cartouche with built-in ears and a female voice that answers to the name of Alexa in 2015, more than a few people have been looking forward to its promising and, more importantly, affordable services as a so called virtual
Interview with Jeffrey De Blois By David Ebony One of my first internet projects was to write a monthly column for a website called Art Icons, beginning in the early 1990s. An experimental site, short-lived, and now defunct, Art Icons was perhaps one of the first web venues devoted exclusively
Zeynep Tufekci— Censorship during the internet era does not operate under the same logic it did during the heyday of print or even broadcast television. When Mubarak cut off internet and cell-phone communication in Egypt in January 2011, just as throngs packed Tahrir Square, his move backfired at all levels.
Terry Eagleton— Over half a century ago, in an excellent little book entitled Communications, Raymond Williams outlined a socialist plan for the arts and media which rejected state control of its content on the one hand and the sovereignty of the profit motive on the other. Instead, the active contributors