Mark Buchanan’s Small Worlds: Uncovering Nature’s Hidden Networks

I just finished reading Mark Buchanan's Small Worlds: Uncovering Nature's Hidden Networks, published in the US as Nexus: Small Worlds and the Groundbreaking Science of Networks (W. W. Norton & Company, 2002).

Buchanan's prose is accessible and spiced with just enough wit to keep the reader engaged, and keeps this a smooth read. The book's also a great primer on the field of complexity science, tracing its trajectory from Milgram's early experiments right across the disciplines, including detailed coverage of the work of such pillars of network theory as Granovetter and Barabasi.

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Ecology of Desert Religions

Two really interesting items in the latest Harper's. Full citations with links as follows:

Richard Rodriguez, "The God of the Desert: Jerusalem and the Ecology of Monotheism," Harper's Magazine Vol 316, No. 1892 (January 2008): 35-46.

John Gray, "Faith in Reason: Secular Fantasies of a Godless Age," Harper's Magazine Vol 316, No. 1892 (January 2008): 85-88.

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“Where Do You Want To Go Today?”

On a flight in mid-November, I managed to stay awake long enough to read through a great piece of magazine writing, Walter Kirn's "The Autumn of the Multitaskers," The Atlantic (Nov 2007), p. 66-80.

It's all the buzz in the blogosphere (OK, so what isn't?). Blog of Rand goes into it in more depth, and notes the irony, for anyone interested in reading the whole article, that full text is "NOT online - go figure. The one article that the overly-wired need to read can only be read in print or online by subscribers."

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