Weekly reading

  • Jeffrey Toobin has an article on Google Book Search in the New Yorker.
  • The Chicago Fire made an attempt to sign Zinédine Zidane only to be told, like other MLS clubs, that the French midfielder is not coming out of retirement.
  • Wired has a short feature on Zidane: Un Portraît du 21ème Siècle, which was recently shown at the Sundance film festival. The magazine says: “. . . Zidane provides some sublime pleasures. At moments, the filmmakers give us near silence, suggesting Zidane’s isolation, or sound effects that sound like a herd of stampeding wildebeest that connect his physicality with survival, wildness and nature.”
  • I read an article in the Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology by Jason Hobbs about designing the web for users in Africa, which didn’t say much except that we need to pay attention to their specific needs: “The real challenge is not low bandwidth, small user bases and budgets for building but our notions of what constitutes a user and how we can design for them and their contexts of use. The opportunity is to design within the limitations that exist to increase trust in the channel (as a meaningful alternative) and thus increase use of the channel.”
  • It’s listening not reading, but still worth checking out is Dave Eggers’s appearance on KCRW’s Bookworm this week. You can listen to the show here. Bookworm, for the uninitiated, is the best show about books in the country.

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