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Web Monitor

15:17 UK time, Tuesday, 12 January 2010

A celebration of the riches of the web.

Today in Web Monitor: why a cow might attack Woody Allen, slowing down the slow movement and helpful inequality.

woodyallen226.jpg• In the New Yorker Woody Allen lets his imagination run away with him after reports that 16 out of 20 people killed by cows in the US were purposefully struck. Mr Allen ponders how it would feel for a cow to strike a film director uncannily like himself, starting with the cow being underwhelmed by meeting the director:

"Imagine my surprise when I lamped the triple threat I speak of and registered neither a brooding cult genius nor a matinée idol but a wormy little cipher, myopic behind black-framed glasses and groomed loutishly in his idea of rural chic: all tweedy and woodsy, with cap and muffler, ready for the leprechauns... He had begun eyeballing the comelier types, and, clasping some actress's hand with his rodent's paw... It was at this point that I decided to kill him."

Incidentally, the BBC Magazine answered the question Why Do Cows Attack in June.

Jennifer Leonard at Good Magazine asks "futurists" why slowness may be important in the future. Science-fiction author Bruce Sterling brings up a problem with the idea - the slow movement is just going too fast :

"'The slow movement imagines itself to belong by rights to the cultural layer' - a slow-moving layer of society - 'but it's still in the layer of fashionable activism.'"

• It's not often that you hear someone advocating inequality. But economist Robin Hanson gives it a go in his blog Overcoming Bias. He argues it's good for business:

"The number of new businesses we get seems limited by the number of folks personally wealthy enough to start new businesses. So having more really rich folks benefits everyone via innovation."

Links in full:

New YorkerWoody Allen | New Yorker | Udder Madness
Good MagazineJennifer Leonard | Good Magazine | Hurry-up and wait
Overcoming BiasRobin Hanson | Overcoming Bias | Helpful Inequality

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