THR Web Features   /   April 3, 2015

The Hedgehog’s Array: April 3, 2015

Noteworthy reads from the last week:

“My Quantified Email Self Experiment: A Failure,” Paul Ford

“Before this experiment, I would have told you that I used to be very passive and conflict-resistant, and that it took a long time to get my back up — but now I’m much more willing to stand up for my ideas. But no, that’s entirely wrong, too. According to my archive I was constantly in some fight or another over email. I apparently have three inches of plate in my skull. And in fact, because I believed, and have believed for so long, that I once was passive but am no longer, I think I tend to be even more likely to be passive-aggressively aggrieved than the typical person.”

“The Overdose,” Bob Wachter

“The clinicians involved in Pablo’s case that day — physicians, nurses and pharmacists—all made small errors or had mistaken judgments that contributed to their patient’s extraordinary overdose. Yet it was the computer systems, and the awkward and sometimes unsafe ways that they interact with busy and fallible human beings, that ultimately were to blame. And the biggest culprit may well have been the hospital’s incessant electronic alerts.”

“Equipment for Living,” Michael Robbins

“But I take it that our having to ask ourselves what poems and pop songs are for, and our compulsion to suggest answers, is a good thing—that it’s the fields that are certain of their purpose and their standing that lend themselves most to reified thinking.”

“This Portentous Composition: Swan Lake’s Place in Soviet Politics,” Amelia Schonbek

“Why Swan Lake? It may seem like a random artistic choice, but to anyone who lived in the former USSR, it made perfect sense.”

“Were We Too Hard on Jonah Lehrer?,” Daniel Engber

“Here’s the truth about Jonah Lehrer: His career has not been destroyed, nor has he apologized for the full extent of his mistakes. This master storyteller did not wander in the wilderness and find some inner peace. He disappeared into the bushes, licked his wounds, and re-emerged with another, even more bewitching tale—the story of his own redemption.”