Jacopo Benedetti

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Books of the year 2014

It is New Year’s Day and I should be looking forward but I’ve been busy – and delayed by the flu – so I’m not yet done looking back. Listed below with potted reviews are the 23 books I read in 2014. This continues a tradition I started last year, when I decided to read less internet and more …

Books

The 100 best novels: No 62 – The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler (1939)

Raymond Chandler’s hardboiled debut brings to life the seedy LA underworld – and Philip Marlowe, the archetypal fictional detective<p>Enter Philip Marlowe, one of the great characters in the Anglo-American novel, a protagonist to rival and possibly surpass Sherlock Holmes. Marlowe holds the key to the …

Saviour of France’s art: how the Mona Lisa was spirited away from the Nazis

Secret operation by Louvre staff on eve of war is revealed in new documentary on forgotten hero Jacques Jaujard<p>It is a French documentary that British television channels are going to fight over. And they’ll have to act quickly, as <i>Illustrious Yet Unknown</i> (<i>Illustre et Inconnu</i>) has already been sold …

The best science fiction novels in October – review roundup

Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Sword, Peter F Hamilton’s The Abyss Beyond Dreams, Gary Gibson’s Extinction Game, Kim Newman’s An English Ghost Story, and Gillian Anderson and Jeff Rovin’s A Vision of Fire<p>Ann Leckie’s stunning debut novel, <i>Ancillary Justice</i>, deservedly won all the genre’s top awards. The …

See Why People Have Pledged More Than $60 Million For This Epic Space Game

The game's runaway success is because "Star Citizen" represents the dream video game for many gamers: It's a space exploration game, first-person shooter, and open-world RPG all combined into one.<p>The ambitious scale of "Star Citizen" means that players can decide how to play the game based on the …

Mesmerizing rebuild of a mechanical Fourier calculator

Albert Michelson's harmonic analyzer -- a 19th century mechanical calculator that can do Fourier analysis with just gears, springs and levers -- was …

Why the internet has turned us into hypocrites

We say that we’re concerned about our privacy, yet happily share information online<p>Back in the heyday of the old Soviet Union, a phrase evolved to describe gullible western intellectuals who came to visit Russia and failed to notice the human and other costs of building a communist utopia. The …

Where I’m Reading From: The Changing World of Books by Tim Parks review – ‘it only makes you want to read more’

Tim Parks’s brilliant, erudite essays about the role of writing in the digital age demand to be read<p>For about three years now, Tim Parks, the English novelist and critic based in Italy, has been posting a regular blog for the <i>New York Review of Books</i> about the business and the purpose of writing and …

Norwegian travel documents given a minimal makeover

<b>News:</b> Oslo-based Neue Design Studio has won a competition to redesign Norway's passports and ID cards, a month after graphics by Snøhetta were chosen …

How the Enigma code-machines worked

With the release of the Alan Turing biopic "The Imitation Game," interest in the Enigma cipher used by the Axis powers and broken by Turing and the …

Evernote And The 100 Year Business Plan: Why Users Love It And Funders Hated It

At 100 millions users and counting, Evernote is the top note-taking application in the world. The company enjoys a revenue curve that any software company would love—a “smile curve” where users are more likely to upgrade to a paid version the longer they use it. But it wasn’t always so rosy. When …

6 reasons why you should quit Facebook

<i>This post is in partnership with Entrepreneur. The article below was originally published at</i> <i>Entrepreneur.com</i><i>.</i><p>By Anna James, …

Prisms

<i>Prisms</i> by British designer <b>Max Lamb</b> are art objects without specific function, but can be used as trivets, paperweights, doorstops, coasters, toys, or …