The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Josh Clark

The Rise and Fall of Jeremy Hammond, Enemy of the State. Rolling Stone reporter Janet Reitman pieces together the disparate news reports of cyber attacks on the websites of CIA contractors, credit card companies and federal agencies and illuminates the common ideology behind them and people who carried them out, including Jeremy Hammond, one of the core members of the group Anonymous.

Where Did the Eight Glasses of Water Myth Come From? On Mental Floss, Chris Gayomali investigates the baffling origin of the ubiquitous idea that humans need to drink eight glasses of water each day to stay healthy, despite all of the evidence that says we really don't.

List of common fallacies. On the website NoBeliefs, Jim Walker puts together a handy list of commonly-used logical fallacies we use in everyday life, like equating correlation for causation or observational selection, where we ignore data that contradicts our argument and focus solely on that which supports it.

Big Game Hunter. In a 2008 issue of Time, writer William Green profiles Irving Finkel, the British Museum's resident expert on ancient games, some of which have been lost to time and rediscovered as the result of Finkel's determined investigations.

World of Grief and Doubt After an Adoptee's Death. In the New York Times, reporters Rachel Swarns and David Herszenhorn write about a nightmare still playing out in Texas for a couple who adopted two neglected Russian brothers, one of whom died mysteriously and for whose death the couple are still unofficially considered responsible by some.

Clawback. In the New Yorker, James Surowiecki writes about the enormous gap that has developed between the tumbling wholesale price of lobster, thanks to record high yields (ostensibly due to changes in migration patterns as a result of climate change), and the psychology behind why restaurant's prices for them remain statically high in spite of their lessened value.

Sneaky Ways Retailers Track Your Shopping. On the website LearnVest, Anna Williams posts a brief synopsis of the increasingly prevalent method of studying shoppers remotely via closed circuit cameras as they make their choices in order to learn how to better manipulate them into making purchases.