From FT, a special section on the new physics, including Clive Cookson on how Britain’s “top scientist” Martin Rees says our brains may not yet have evolved sufficiently to unlock the secrets of the cosmos. Steven Weinberg on physics: What we do and don’t know. A digital copy of the universe, encrypted: As physics prepares for ambitious projects like the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, the field is seeking new methods of data-driven discovery. Jonathan Ree reviews Newton and the Origin of Civilisation by Jed Buchwald and Mordechai Feingold. The cosmos is cracked: Clara Moskowitz on how a computer simulation of the universe shows that it may be filled with “defects in spacetime”. The Big Bang may not have spawned the universe after all: Our universe might actually be the result of the collapse of a four-dimensional star. Rhett Allain on a media guide for physics. The secret to the universe is at the bottom of a hole in South Dakota. Mark Jackson on how theoretical physics is like sex, but with no need to experiment. There could be 40 billion habitable Earthlike planets in our galaxy alone — this has been another semi-regular reminder of your insignificance. Adam Mann on the experiments most likely to shake up the future of physics. It’s a physics world: Philip Ballon how distinctions between “discoveries” and technological “spinoffs” are meaningless, even misleading.
Ciara Hackett (QUB): Responding to Crisis: When the Telephone Fails. Gillian K. Hadfield (USC) and Barry R. Weingast (Stanford): Microfoundations and the Rule of Law. The miraculousness of the commonplace: Morgan Meis on remembering Arthur Danto. Locked in the cabinet: Glenn Thrush on the worst job in Barack Obama’s Washington. Jason Fagone on how High Times magazine may be the most influential publication of our era. Kenneth Roth on the NSA’s global threat to free speech. From New York, the idea of starting a (non-digital) magazine in this day and age seems downright insane — and yet, for those keeping score at the newsstand, dozens upon dozens of them have sprung up in the past few years. Aya Lowe on how remote islands are coping with Typhoon Haiyan's devastation. From UN Dispatch, Mark Leon Goldberg on how the UN responds when a massive disaster strikes; and the UN thinks you should give a crap (and more on World Toilet Day). Barrett Brown is bored out of his mind in jail. Neil Irwin on everything you need to know about JPMorgan’s $13 billion settlement. Kate Wong on why the U.S. destroyed its ivory stockpile. Jonathan Zakarin on how to write an awesome movie, according to some of Hollywood's best writers. Who are the six greatest living artists? This provocative, perhaps unanswerable question is worth asking for what it reveals about a cultural arena in which money and fame often seem to be the paramount obsessions.
Obamacare enrollment seems to be recovering from its slow start and picking up in the last few weeks. In states where the website works, Obamacare works too. Jonathan Cohn on six things the media doesn't understand about Obamacare: People losing their insurance is a bigger story than people getting insurance for the first time. Michael Kinsey on how people complaining about Obamacare insurance cancellations want to get something for nothing — and Obama encouraged them to think they could. Igor Volsky and Adam Peck on the Obamacare cancellation notices you haven’t heard about. David Warsh on a simple step with which the president can begin to re-establish his authority. Matthew Yglesias on the broken system behind healthcare.gov: The lead contractor on the federal exchange is prospering like never before. Meet the bureaucrats now deciding Obamacare’s fate. Michael I. Niman on Obamacare and the Republican Party's long con. Joshua Green on Marco Rubio's devious new plan to kill Obamacare. "Repeal and replace," as the Republican slogan went, has effectively morphed into "repeal and then we'll consider doing something but we're not sure what". Tom Tomorrow on Republican alternatives to healthcare. Rightblogger rage that health plans could change turns to rage that health plans could stay the same. We're about to learn whether the anti-Obamacare crowd will control the narrative, or have to fold it up. All sorts of things will happen to Obamacare in the next few months — Obamacare hyperventilation to continue forever!