... are fewer and shorter than expected.
... I finally get around to writing about Nassim Nicholas Taleb's The Black Swan: A lively, sassy study of what's not known. This turns out to be even shorter than the one I wrote - though whoever did the trimming did a fine job. (It seems a couple of ads took pride of place on the main book page this week. Well, they do help pay the bills. Missing is a review of Howard Jacobson's Kalooki Nights, which must be cursed: This is about the third time it's been held.)
Update: Dave Lull reminds me that in Fooled by Randomness Taleb traces the term Black Swan to J.S. Mill: "In his Treatise on Human Nature, the Scots philosopher David Hume posed the issue in the following way (as rephrased in the now famous black swan problem by John Stuart Mill): No amount of observations of white swans can allow the inference that all swans are white, but the observation of a single black swan is sufficient to refute that conclusion." I don't recall that Taleb brings this up in The Black Swan and I mentioned Popper because I was familiar with the essay I quoted from. Taleb does mention that C.S Peirce came up with a version of the Black Swan solution long before Popper.
... John Freeman finds Rachel Seiffert's latest intriguingly ambiguous: Looking at how the burdens of the past affect us Dale's many voices bring world of Harry Potter to life.
... Kristin Granero finds the mystery's not the most important thing in Tasmina Perry's debut: 4 glam sisters suspect in kin's death.
... And Carlin Romano looks at time travel: Pastward travel and theories of time.
This past week ...
... Ed Sozanski enjoyed Andrew Ferguson on Lincoln: Adoring Abe: How and why we love Lincoln.
Check the book page for more.