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Gmail's Auto-Complete Makes Me Feel Like a Robot - The Atlantic
The feature’s predictive powers make me feel … predictable, robotic, and un-singular.
writing  automation  google 
5 minutes ago by lightningdb
Joe Gould’s Secret—I By Joseph Mitchell | The New Yorker | September 19, 1964
oe Gould was an odd and penniless and unemployable little man who came to the city in 1916 and ducked and dodged and held on as hard as he could for over thirty-five years. He was a member of one of the oldest families in New England (“The Goulds Were the Goulds,” he used to say, “when the Cabots and the Lowells were clamdiggers”), he was born and brought up in a town near Boston in which his father was a leading citizen, and he went to Harvard, as did his father and grandfather before him, but he claimed that until he arrived in New York City he had always felt out of place.
Joseph  Mitchell  JosephMitchell  Joe  Gould  JoeGould  New  Yorker  NewYorker  TheNewYorker  bio  profile  literature  writing 
2 hours ago by userX
John Lanchester · The Case of Agatha Christie · LRB 20 December 2018
On the enduring appeal of Agatha Christie, whose writing and characterization are inferior to many of her contemporaries but whose formal/structural experiments and social details, the author argues, have allowed her books to age better.
mysteries  agatha_christie  books  writers  writing  dorothy_sayers 
7 hours ago by johnmfrench
How This All Happened · Collaborative Fund
Now you can see the problem.

Joe, an investment banker making $900,000 a year, buys a 4,000 square foot house with two Mercedes and sends three of his kids to Pepperdine. He can afford it.

Peter, a bank branch manager making $80,000 a year, sees Joe and feels a subconscious sense of entitlement to live a similar lifestyle, because Peter’s parents believed – and instilled in him – that Americans’ lifestyles weren’t that different even if they had different jobs. His parents were right during their era, because incomes fell into a tight distribution. But that was then. Peter lives in a different world. But his expectations haven’t changed much from his parents, even if the facts have.

So what does Peter do?

He takes out a huge mortgage. He has $45,000 of credit card debt. He leases two cars. His kids will graduate with heavy student loans. He can’t afford the stuff Joe can, but he’s pushed to stretch for the same lifestyle. It is a big stretch.

This would have seemed preposterous to someone in the 1930s. But we’ve spent a half-century since the end of the war fostering a cultural acceptance of household debt.

During a time when median wages were flat, the median new American home grew 50% larger:
economy  history  america  thebrowser  writing 
8 hours ago by JohnDrake

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