Kickoff For September 18, 2023

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Monday Kickoff, a collection of what I’ve found interesting, informative, and insightful on the web over the last seven days.

Let’s get this Monday started with these links:

Writing By Omission, wherein legendary journalist and essayist John McPhee recounts the lessons that he (and other writers) learned over the years about how paring back his work makes it better.

The Little-Known Legend of Jesus in Japan, wherein we hear the fanciful, weird, and strangely wonderful tale of how a Japanese town named Shingo is where some believe Jesus lived and where he was buried.

The False Promise of Opportunity Zones, wherein Timothy Weaver looks at the history of the kinds of investment and incentive programs for lower income regions that were trotted out, and breathlessly praised, by the Trump administration, and how those opportunity zones simply don’t work for those they’re intended to help.

The Language of Democracy, wherein Max Ridge examines the book Plain Style by cultural critic Christopher Lasche and discusses how it’s both an antidote to the rambling and dissembling that engulfs us daily, and as a manual of surveillance for the watchful citizen.

How activity in outer space will affect regional inequalities in the future, wherein Matthew Finch speculates on the ways to combat inequality on Earth by framing the problem in future activity off planet.

Can Ocean Waves Power the Grid? New Technology is Bringing Us Closer Than Ever, wherein Paolo Rosa-Aquino looks at how rough surf could become another cleaner, more sustainable way to power our world.

Alan Turing’s Most Important Machine Was Never Built, wherein we learn about the famed and fabled Turing machine, how it would work, and why one has never been fashioned.

Buried History, wherein we get a glimpse into the archaeological research being done off the Florida coast, which has turned up several sites once inhabited by humans.

Personal Machines and Portable Worlds, wherein Christopher Butler examines how the concept of personal technology has changed since he came of age, and ponders what that term means in a broader sense.

And that’s it for this Monday. Come back in seven days for another set of links to start off your week.

Scott Nesbitt