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Do you Floss?

Lawrence Lessig: The sharing economy

18 August 2005
The Success of Open Source 
by Steven Weber.
Harvard, 312 pp., £19.95, August 2004, 0 674 01292 5
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Democratising Innovation 
by Eric​ von Hippel.
MIT, 208 pp., £19.95, May 2005, 0 262 00274 4
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... and corporations, would be wise to keep track of. Steven Weber’s The Success of Open Source explores the economy that has produced the ‘open source’ and ‘free software’ movements. Eric von Hippel’s Democratising Innovation looks at an economy involving a much wider range of user-supplied innovation. Both books address similar questions: how come these economies actually function ...

See you in court, pal

John Lanchester: The Microsoft Trial

30 September 1999
The Nudist on the Late Shift 
by Po Bronson.
Secker, 248 pp., £10, August 1999, 0 436 20477 0
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Infinite Loop: How Apple, the World’s Most Insanely Great Computer Company, Went Insane 
by Michael Malone.
Aurum, 598 pp., £18.99, April 1999, 1 85410 638 4
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Burn Rate: How I Survived the Gold Rush Years on the Internet 
by Michael Woolf.
Orion, 364 pp., £7.99, June 1999, 0 7528 2606 9
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The Cathedral and the Bazaar: revised edition 
by Eric​ S. Raymond.
O'Reilly, 256 pp., £11.95, February 2001, 0 596 00108 8
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... people use Linux. This might sound a smallish number, but the philosophy of ‘open source’ computing, as it’s called, is reaching critical mass in the computer world. An essay on the subject by EricRaymond, ‘The Cathedral and the Bazaar’, has had enormous influence in disseminating the ideas and values of the open source; it persuaded Netscape to make available the code of its latest ...

Oops

Ian Stewart

4 November 1993
The Hacker Crackdown: Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier 
by Bruce Sterling.
Viking, 328 pp., £16.99, January 1993, 0 670 84900 6
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The New Hacker’s Dictionary 
edited by Eric Raymond.
MIT, 516 pp., £11.75, October 1992, 0 262 68079 3
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Approaching Zero: Data Crime and the Computer Underworld 
by Bryan Clough and Paul Mungo.
Faber, 256 pp., £4.99, March 1993, 0 571 16813 2
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... On 29 June 1989, a security manager for the US telephone company Indiana Bell received an anonymous telephone call. In a menacing tone a young man’s voice informed him that he had planted bombs in several switching systems known as 5ESSs. ‘They’re set to blow on a national holiday. They could be anywhere in the country – it’s a sort of competition, a security test.’ On 15 January 1990 – ...

Making It Up

Raphael Samuel

4 July 1996
Raymond​ Williams 
by Fred Inglis.
Routledge, 333 pp., £19.99, October 1995, 0 415 08960 3
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... This biography opens with a vivid chapter on Raymond Williams’s funeral. Entitled ‘Prologue, in Memoriam’, it transports the reader to Clodock Church, ‘a plain little building’ in the foothills of the Black Mountains. It is a comfortless day ...
31 October 1996
Adventures on the Freedom Road: The French Intellectuals in the 20th Century 
by Bernard-Henri Lévy, translated by Richard Veasey.
Harvill, 434 pp., £20, December 1995, 1 86046 035 6
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The Imaginary Jew 
by Alain Finkielkraut, translated by Kevin O’Neill and David Suchoff.
Nebraska, 230 pp., £23.95, August 1994, 0 8032 1987 3
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The Defeat of the Mind 
by Alain Finkielkraut, translated by Judith Friedlander.
Columbia, 165 pp., $15, May 1996, 0 231 08023 9
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... In lieu of Sartre and Raymond Aron, future historians of French intellectuals in the Eighties and Nineties may well be condemned to structuring their narratives around the post-Marx brothers of French intellectual life, Bernard ...
3 October 1985
Here lies: An Autobiography 
by Eric​ Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 234 pp., £10.95, June 1985, 0 297 78588 5
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The Levanter 
by Eric​ Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 216 pp., £8.95, June 1985, 0 297 99521 9
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Doctor Frigo 
by Eric​ Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 250 pp., £8.95, June 1985, 0 297 76848 4
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The Other Side of the Moon: The Life of David Niven 
by Sheridan Morley.
Weidenfeld, 300 pp., £10.95, September 1985, 9780297787082
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Secrets: Boyhood in a Jewish Hotel 1932-1954 
by Ronald Hayman.
Peter Owen, 224 pp., £12, July 1985, 9780720606423
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A Woman in Custody 
by Audrey Peckham.
Fontana, 253 pp., £3.95, June 1985, 0 00 636952 9
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No Gangster More Bold 
by John Morgan.
Hodder, 179 pp., £9.95, July 1985, 0 340 26387 3
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... Eric Ambler told an interviewer recently that though he often felt the urge to write for the stage he was put off by the scrutiny to which he would be subjected: and the pun in the title of his ...
17 December 1981
The Forward March of Labour Halted? 
by Eric​ Hobsbawm, Ken Gill and Tony Benn.
Verso, 182 pp., £8.50, November 1981, 0 86091 041 5
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... Against this background, a public heart searching by the Old and/or Far Left is of both academic and topical interest. The contents of, and reactions to, the Marx Memorial Lecture given by Professor Eric Hobsbawm in 1978 testify to a mood of doubt amounting to despair which would have astonished and dismayed a similar audience a generation ago. The Forward March of Labour has stumbled to a halt, and ...

Moooovement

R.W. Johnson

8 February 1990
Resources of Hope: Culture, Democracy, Socialism 
by Raymond​ Williams, edited by Robin Gable.
Verso, 334 pp., £29.95, February 1989, 0 86091 229 9
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The Alien Mind of Raymond​ Williams 
by Jan Gorak.
Missouri, 132 pp., $9.95, December 1988, 0 8262 0688 3
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Raymond​ Williams: Writing, Culture, Politics 
by Alan O’Connor.
Blackwell, 180 pp., £27.50, June 1989, 0 631 16589 4
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Raymond​ Williams on Television: Selected Writings 
edited by Alan O’Connor.
Routledge, 223 pp., £7.95, April 1989, 9780415026277
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News from Nowhere: No 6. Raymond​ Williams: Third Generation 
edited by Tony Pinkney.
Oxford English Limited, 108 pp., £3.50, February 1989
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Raymond​ Williams: Critical Perspectives 
edited by Terry Eagleton.
Polity, 235 pp., £29.50, September 1989, 9780745603841
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... Raymond Williams’s death in January 1988 has been followed by an avalanche of obituarial tribute. To some extent, the tributes were a matter of the Left giving a last, sad cheer for one of its most ...

In Letchworth

Gillian Darley: Pevsner's Hertfordshire

22 December 2019
... and the Comet, a 1930s roadhouse that is apparently designed ‘to resemble the outline of an aeroplane, with rounded two-storey nose and lower wings’. In front of it stands a column carved by Eric Kennington with images of flight and surmounted by a model of the Comet racing plane. The 1952 flight test hangar and the control tower are still standing, though the aerodrome closed in 1993 to ...

Tired of Giving in

Eric​ Foner: Rosa Parks

10 May 2001
Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory: The Life of Rosa Parks 
by Douglas Brinkley.
Weidenfeld, 248 pp., £12.99, January 2001, 0 297 60708 1
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... in an uneasy coalition with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. This was the world in which Parks matured. Her politicisation began during the 1930s, when she married Raymond Parks, one of the founding members of the Montgomery branch of the NAACP and an avid reader of black periodicals like the Chicago Defender, Pittsburgh Courier and the Crisis – the latter a ...

After the Cold War

Eric​ Hobsbawm: Tony Judt

26 April 2012
... have been built so quickly on the basis of a few articles in journals of modest circulation addressed exclusively to academic intellectuals. The pages of the mainstream press had long been open to a Raymond Aron in France (clearly one of Tony’s inspirations), or a Habermas in Germany, and their impact had long been discounted. He was well aware of the risks, personal and professional, he ran in ...

Destined to Disappear

Susan Pedersen: ‘Race Studies’

19 October 2016
White World Order, Black Power Politics: The Birth of American International Relations 
by Robert Vitalis.
Cornell, 272 pp., $29.95, November 2015, 978 0 8014 5397 7
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... the ‘well-being and development’ of colonised peoples while keeping them in imperial hands. Many prominent American international relations scholars of the interwar years – Harvard’s Raymond Leslie Buell, Columbia’s Parker Moon, Chicago’s Quincy Wright – made their names studying that mandates regime. American foundations such as Rockefeller and Carnegie were happy to underwrite ...

Gangsters in Hats

Richard Mayne

17 May 1984
Essays on Detective Fiction 
edited by Bernard Benstock.
Macmillan, 218 pp., £20, February 1984, 0 333 32195 2
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Dashiell Hammett: A Life at the Edge 
by William Nolan.
Arthur Barker, 276 pp., £9.95, September 1983, 0 213 16886 3
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The Life of Dashiell Hammett 
by Diane Johnson.
Chatto, 344 pp., £12.95, January 1984, 9780701127664
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Hellman in Hollywood 
by Bernard Dick.
Associated University Presses, 183 pp., £14.95, September 1983, 0 8386 3140 1
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... high art, and the critical language that normally sustains those distinctions’. Implicitly, perhaps he did – although the evidence suggests that he thought his thrillers journeyman stuff. It was Raymond Chandler, in that famous piece of defensive expansionism, ‘The Simple Art of Murder’, who invoked ‘tragedy’ and ‘redemption’, proclaiming that ‘down these mean streets a man must go who ...

The Vulgarity of Success

Murray Sayle: Everest and Empire

7 May 1998
Eric​ Shipton: Everest and Beyond 
by Peter Steele.
Constable, 290 pp., £18.99, March 1998, 0 09 478300 4
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... Europeans who think they understand the British have wondered why Edward Whymper took the trouble to make the first recorded ascent of the Matterhorn in 1865. ‘For reasons which are obscure,’ Eric Hobsbawm CH has noted cattily, ‘such strenuous activities amid inspiring scenery appealed particularly to Anglo-Saxon professional men of liberal leanings (perhaps the close company of tough and ...

Madly Excited

John Bayley

1 June 1989
The Life of Graham Greene. Vol. I: 1904-1939 
by Norman Sherry.
Cape, 783 pp., £16.95, April 1989, 0 224 02654 2
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... independently of his magical capacity to create – the one does not affect the other; and this equability is found, too, at a much humbler level – that of the best-seller and thriller-writer. Eric Ambler, a craftsman much admired by Greene, would seem not to have needed to make any pact with the Grub Street Mephistopheles: he stays the same whatever he writes. A Greene, though, or an Ian ...

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