Can you learn to be an expert at table tennis in a year? That's what Sam Priestley, 25, from Wimbledon, London attempted to find out. With his friend Ben Larcombe, a table tennis coach, the aim was to reach the top 250 in the UK.
A few months ago there was a list of links to classic video game emulators posted. Very recently, I'm pleased to report, those links all came true. The Internet Archive bespoke upon aforementioned consoles, computers, and mileposts on our way to the tech utopia of today, (seriously, where's my flying car?) and they asked us to do something: Imagine every computer that ever existed, literally, in your browser. And it was so. I have absolutely no affiliation with jscott, btw. Thought I should disclose that.
"One can almost hear the anticipatory echoes of something like Yelp in the context of José Ortega y Gasset’s The Revolt of the Masses (1930). The multitude, he wrote, once “scattered about the world in small groups,” now appears “as an agglomeration.” It has “suddenly become visible, installing itself in the preferential positions in society. Before, if it existed, it passed unnoticed, occupying the background of the social stage; now it has advanced to the footlights and is the principal character.” The disgruntled diner, now able to make or break a restaurant through sheer collective will. Against this leveling of critical power, the old guard fulminates. Ruth Reichl, the former editor of Gourmet, recently harrumphed that “anybody who believes Yelp is an idiot. Most people on Yelp have no idea what they’re talking about.”"—Star Wars, by Tom Vanderbilt, in The Wilson Quarterly [more inside]
Wikipedia And The Death Of The Expert - "McLuhan prefigured the Internet era in a number of surprising ways. As he said in a March 1969 Playboy interview: 'The computer thus holds out the promise of a technologically engendered state of universal understanding and unity, a state of absorption in the Logos that could knit mankind into one family and create a perpetuity of harmony and peace' ... Wikipedia, along with other crowd-sourced resources, is wreaking a certain amount of McLuhanesque havoc on conventional notions of 'authority', 'authorship', and even 'knowledge' ... Knowledge is growing more broadly and immediately participatory and collaborative by the moment."
Five Books claims to make you an instant expert, which it may or may not. What it does do is interview an important thinker every day about a topic, and have them select five books on the subject. The results are often eccentric and usually fascinating. Some samples: Rebecca Goldstein on reason's limitations; John Timoney on policing; Calvin Trillin on memoirs, Marcus du Sautoy on the beauty of math, Judith Herrin on Byzantium, Jonathan Haidt on happiness, and lots more, including five books on puppeteering, Nabokov, books for kids, moral philosophy, video games, terrorism, the enemies of Ancient Rome, and cookbooks.
H.A.R.O., or "Help A Reporter Out," is the brainchild of Peter Shankman (aka skydiver on Twitter). Embracing the philosophy that "Everyone is an expert on something," HARO matches reporters and authors up with sources through the simple process of a sign-up form. Seems like a good match for all the experts here on MeFi. [more inside]
A Big List of Sites That Teach You How To Do Stuff. That is what this is.
Even experts don't know what (3 and 3/16ths) times 20 is. But it has something to do with square roots and kinetic energy. [single link to excellent youtube deposition]
Experts can suck at predicting the future. Their intuitive sense of probability is no more developed than lay-people's. A classic experiment is to present two indistinguishable choices are presented, but with unequal probability of reward. Humans look for complex patterns, which don't exist, and preform quite poorly. Rats quickly recognize the choice with higher probability, and preform optimally.
Mmmm, Pie. What do you get when you combine quirky pie recipes with homemade postcards? Why, the Pie-of-the-Month club, of course. Check out timely entries like Election Pie, retro Tang Pie, or Pink Lullaby Pie from a real live Wizard of Oz munchkin. Consult with a real pie expert to answer all your pie-related questions!
How to Fake Being an Indie Rock Expert. The best advice I've seen all day -- "Start somewhere safe: Sonic Youth."
Cruel and unusual? "Expert witnesses testified that the brief delays give the body time to recover and increase the chance the person will feel pain." What a crock... I wonder if the 3 year old baby he killed and dismembered felt any pain? The punishment should fit the crime. Although the death penalty doesn't deter crime, if we punished those in the same manner that they commited the murder, then maybe criminals would think twice... then again, maybe not.