Horizon highlights – Opinion page edition

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Our regular roundup of sci-tech stories from across the Web includes: Atlantic blogger Andrew Sullivan reflects on the blogosphere, the TXT "Gr8 Db8," and Sony's chief chats about past fumbles and future plays. Let’s kick it off:

New Media: Why I Blog, by Andrew Sullivan
"For centuries, writers have experimented with forms that evoke the imperfection of thought, the inconstancy of human affairs, and the chastening passage of time. But as blogging evolves as a literary form, it is generating a new and quintessentially postmodern idiom that’s enabling writers to express themselves in ways that have never been seen or understood before. Its truths are provisional, and its ethos collective and messy. Yet the interaction it enables between writer and reader is unprecedented, visceral, and sometimes brutal. And make no mistake: it heralds a golden era for journalism." [via The Atlantic]

Basics: The 18 Things You Need for Your Computer
"What I've found most fascinating is the rundown of which programs I use most often. It's a huge list, actually, and one that I thought might be fun to share. Here's what I'm betting: Lots of people have questions about the best way to go about managing their e-mail, organizing their appointments, searching for files on their computer, or any number of other common tasks." [via Slate]

Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test?

TXT: Thumbspeak
"Is texting bringing us closer to the end of life as we currently tolerate it? Enough people have suggested that it is to have inspired David Crystal to produce 'Txtng: The Gr8 Db8' (Oxford; $19.95). 'I don’t think I have ever come across a topic which has attracted more adult antagonism,' he says. (On the other hand, Crystal has written more than a hundred books, so he does not require extraordinary encouragement to share his views.)" [via The New Yorker]

Wall Street: The Rise of the Machines
"We are living, we have long been told, in the Information Age. Yet now we are faced with the sickening suspicion that technology has run ahead of us. Man is a fire-stealing animal, and we can’t help building machines and machine intelligences, even if, from time to time, we use them not only to outsmart ourselves but to bring us right up to the doorstep of Doom." [via The New York Times]

Required viewing: Sony CEO Howard Stringer on 'Charlie Rose'
"During the course of the show, Stringer talks, fairly knowledgeably, about the PlayStation 3, how Sony lost the portable music player market, how Blu-ray vs. HD DVD played out differently than the Betamax vs. VHS battle, the future importance (and current impracticality) of OLED displays, and the painfully low margin on PC hardware (even expensive Vaios). He also makes a surprisingly spirited pitch for the PlayStation Network as a delivery system for all kinds of content (check out his ideas about using the PS3 and PlayStation Network as a platform capable of sharing content with the iPhone). Rather than pull a bunch of out-of-context quotes, here's the whole episode, handily embedded for your viewing pleasure." [via CNET]

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