1. Well, that’s not so good: “More problems for bees: we’ve wiped out their favorite plants”: “scientists concluded that loss of preferred host plants is one of the main factors responsible for wild bee decline…”
2. Alex Tabarrok on Facebook vs. Apple as business models: “Facebook doesn’t charge its customers so relative to Apple it has a greater interest in increasing the number of customers even if that means degrading the quality. As a result, Facebook has more users than Apple but no one loves Facebook. Facebook is broadcast television and Apple is HBO.”
4. Dahlia Lithwick on briefing the Supreme Court about rap music.
5. Noah Smith: Five Reasons Japan Could Not Have Won WWII.
6. Derek Lowe on regional variation in Iranian cuisine (with parallels to Southern cooking): “it seems that Iranian food is one of those cuisines that varies so much from region to region (and household to household) that it’s hard to put up a recipe without causing a fight of some sort. The closest situation to that in America is with barbecue – what one part of the country considers the pinnacle of the art would be rated as the next thing to cannibalism somewhere else. And so it is with Iranians. Common phrases include ‘Oh, well, so-and-so doesn’t know how to cook (Dish X) the right way’, or ‘They don’t know how to make any decent (insert whole swath of cuisine) in (insert Iranian city or region), anyway’. Add in some ‘Well, you used to be able to get good (type of food), but you can’t any more’, and I can see how my Southern upbringing blends with my wife’s Iranian one pretty smoothly.”