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Maria Popova Is Busy
November 21, 2011 9:33 AM   Subscribe

Maria Popova may be the best curator of Awesome on the Internet after the blue's own hivemind. Her site, Brain Pickings, has been mentioned a few times, but no-one appears to have pointed out her Twitter feed or her contributions to TBWA's tumblr, Curiosity Counts. Some recent posts of note: a piece on digital parasitism and the business of culture, Terry Prachett's self-documentary Choosing To Die, her selection of the best children's and picture books of 2011. Also, the best of Brain Pickings from last week and 2010. When not doing all that, she's writing for several magazines, organising the effort to restock the Brookyn OWS library after its destruction by police, and curating physical objects, sent as gifts every quarter.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul (20 comments total) 38 users marked this as a favorite

 
Who or what is TBWA?

Jeepers, there's a lot here. I'm getting lost just in the best children's books (which has a lot of things grownups like and children don't, but a pretty good percentage of stuff kids will also like). I have a tab open to the physical objects thing but I don't know when I'm going to get to it, let alone the other links.
posted by DU at 10:03 AM on November 21, 2011


Who or what is TBWA?

TBWA appears to be an advertising agency.
posted by zamboni at 10:11 AM on November 21, 2011


TBWA
posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:11 AM on November 21, 2011


Maria is an invaluable sieve of knowledge, art, news, and culture and I'm thrilled to see her linked so thoroughly here. She's worthy of your RSS subscription and a Twitter follow at the very least.
posted by joinks at 10:12 AM on November 21, 2011


Definitely RSS'd her and I also requested 2 or 3 (or 4?) books at the library based on that children's post.
posted by DU at 10:14 AM on November 21, 2011


Also, Metafilter's Own.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:15 AM on November 21, 2011


I read her Digital Parasitism article and was quite disappointed. She doesn't seem to have any understanding of the economic theories she is criticizing...the mathematics of Mass Production is pretty well understood these days even if it technically is still "just a theory".
posted by Chekhovian at 11:00 AM on November 21, 2011


Wow. Thank goodness I don't have much to do at work (and an office with a door) this week. Thanks.
posted by TheShadowKnows at 11:09 AM on November 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Looking at the Best Children's and Picture Books of 2011 post, the 'biologist/astronomer' illustration in blexbolex's People is mindbending.

Adding to my RSS.
posted by variella at 12:00 PM on November 21, 2011


I followed her on Twitter for awhile, but it was a constant deluge of (admittedly cool) stuff, and I just couldn't keep up. I now just pop in occasionally and peek over the last 10 or so links to see if any are interesting.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 12:17 PM on November 21, 2011


She doesn't seem to have any understanding of the economic theories she is criticizing

She's recapping the arguments of the book she's reviewing.
posted by LogicalDash at 12:39 PM on November 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


http://jerrysmap.blogspot.com/

this is gold gold gold. If you're into that kind of thing.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:38 PM on November 21, 2011


I am delighted much of the content in @brainpicker's firehose, and I understand that it's not fair to apply a lofty journalistic standard to this type of machinegun blogging, but I can't help but feel the same way as I do with Doctorow et al: the failure to, in excitement, pay close attention to detail and acknowledge errors really impoverishes an otherwise great thing.

I tried to bring up errors a few times on tiwtter (a reddit AMA that's had the actual content deleted for a few months, some obviously incorrect population figures, various technical errors, etc), but they were summarily ignored, while a flood of new articles and links continued. These are relatively minor, of course, but it erodes my trust in the source.
posted by parkan at 1:49 PM on November 21, 2011 [4 favorites]


She's recapping the arguments of the book she's reviewing

It seems like a pretty glowing review/endorsement to me.
posted by Chekhovian at 2:21 PM on November 21, 2011


but they were summarily ignored, while a flood of new articles and links continued.

Um... you got that this is a free, no-ads service, yea?
posted by victors at 3:32 PM on November 21, 2011


It seems like a pretty glowing review/endorsement to me.

OK. Why would mass production theory make a difference, since the issue concerns intellectual property that can be copied at zero cost?
posted by LogicalDash at 3:59 PM on November 21, 2011


copied at zero cost

That is the definition of perfect, frictionless mass production. You have to invest some initial capital for start up costs, but then you start producing copies and the unit price drops, given the usual free market assumptions are in place. Of course legal structures, monopoly power, or collusive practices can diminish this effect.
posted by Chekhovian at 4:26 PM on November 21, 2011


Yup.

That's what the argument starts with.

You are not even contradicting her. Or the author of the book.
posted by LogicalDash at 4:54 PM on November 21, 2011


You are not even contradicting her.

I found her meandering outline free stream of conciousness prose to be rather hard to distill down to a clear theory of her own. The whole post seemed to be just a rather poor and seemingly incoherent summary of the book she's recommending.

At the end she says:
I, by the way, was happy to pay $13.99 for a Kindle copy of Levine’s book — and would’ve happily paid much more had he offered a pay-what-you-will option.

Here's a solution to her quandry: Buy multiple copies of the damn book.
posted by Chekhovian at 6:06 PM on November 21, 2011


Metafilter: a rather poor and seemingly incoherent summary of the book
posted by sneebler at 7:36 PM on November 21, 2011


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