Brandon Sanderson has said that one of the two main ideas for the first Mistborn novel was to create a fantasy version of a heist story like Ocean’s Eleven or Sneakers. I probably wasn’t the only one to make the connection before reading that that was his intent, so it did come across. I think the idea of a fantasy caper story is interesting, but as much as I liked Mistborn, it didn’t really satisfy me as a heist story. Maybe that’s because other elements took over more after the first part of the book.
In the Guardian piece I linked yesterday Clay Shirky was quoted saying, “Institutions will try to preserve the problem for which they are the solution.” Anecdotal evidence and intuition agree with this observation, but what does it really mean?
Barry Eisler has an article in The Guardian today continuing to point out the problems with the arguments supporting legacy publishers against the Justice Department’s suit. It’s good, but what prompted this post was the great links in the article to some things I hadn’t come across before.
I’ve added a gallery of drawings I did on Draw Something that I thought were worth sharing. Take a look if you like.
A lot of people are blogging lately about the civil antitrust suit the US Department of Justice filed against Apple and 5 of the Big 6 publishers. Some authors are saying some pretty ridiculous things to paint Amazon as the bad guy and the Big 6 as the underdogs, and of course the publishers themselves want you to see them this way. I found it kind of disappointing today that John Scalzi recommended people read that drivel by Charlie Stross, especially since Scalzi’s earlier points on the matter were so rational. I found this section of Stross’ diatribe both humorous and galling (emphasis mine): Continue reading Trust Busting
I came across this great video today of John Cleese giving a lecture about creativity. Watch:
On Wednesday the New York Times Magazine published a really interesting article that talks a little about gamification and a lot about specifically the type of games, often found on Facebook and mobile devices, that capitalize on the snippets of “free” time everyone has between doing other things. It’s definitely worth a read; go check it out.
A few weeks ago I was looking at Wikipedia’s list of cognitive biases (one of the more interesting things to read about on Wikipedia. Another is the list of common misconceptions). Yesterday I was thinking about rap. Specifically, the rhyming reminded me of the rhyme-as-reason effect I’d read about, and gave rise to a humorous theory.