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Micheline Bérnard always loved Lionel Desormeaux. Their parents were friends though that bonhomie had not quite carried on to the children.
Micheline and Lionel went to primary and secondary school together, had known each other all their lives—when Lionel looked upon Micheline he was always overcome with the vague feeling he had seen her somewhere before while she was overcome with the precise knowledge that he was the man of her dreams.
In truth, everyone loved Lionel Desormeaux. He was tall and brown with high cheekbones and full lips. His body was perfectly muscled and after a long day of swimming in the ocean, he would emerge from the salty water, glistening.
Micheline would sit in a cabana, invisible. She would lick her lips and she would stare. She would think, “Look at me, Lionel,” but he never did.
When Lionel walked, there was an air about him. He moved slowly but with deliberate steps and sometimes, when he walked, people swore they could hear the bass of a deep drum. His mother, who loved her only boy more than any other, always told him, “Lionel, you are the son of L’Ouverture.”
He believed her. He believed everything his mother ever told him. Lionel always told his friends, “My father freed our people. I am his greatest son.” In Port-au-Prince, there were too many women. Micheline knew competition for Lionel’s attention was fierce. She was attractive, petite. She wore her thick hair in a sensible bun.
On weekends, she would let that hair down and when she walked by, men would shout, “Quelle belle paire de jambes,” what beautiful legs, and Micheline would savor the thrilling taste of their attention. Most Friday nights, Micheline and her friends would gather at Oasis, a popular nightclub on the edge of the Bel Air slum. She drank fruity drinks and smoked French cigarettes and wore skirts revealing just the right amount of leg.
Lionel was always surrounded by a mob of adoring women. He let them buy him rum and Cokes and always sat at the center of the room wearing his pressed linen slacks and dark tee shirts that showed off his perfect, chiseled arms.
At the end of the night, he would select one woman to take home, bed her thoroughly, and wish her well the following morning. The stone path to his front door was lined with the tears and soiled panties of the women Lionel had sexed then scorned.
On her birthday, Micheline decided she would be the woman Lionel took home. She wore a bright sundress, strapless. She dabbed perfume everywhere she wanted to feel Lionel’s lips. She wore high heels so high her brother had to help her into the nightclub.
When Lionel arrived to hold court, Micheline made sure she was closest. She smiled widely and angled her shoulders just so and leaned in so he could see everything he wanted to see within her ample cleavage. At the end of the night, Lionel nodded in her direction. He said, “Tonight you will know the affections of L’Ouverture’s greatest son.”
SVALBARD, Norway—On a cold shore in the icy archipelago of Svalbard, a relative stone’s throw from the North Pole, a small cabin belonging to Svein Nordahl is a hive of activity. He has no running water and not one of Svalbard’s 31 miles of roads stretches as far as Bjørndalen, the small community of scattered shacks where he has made his home.
But the isolated outpost has been fitted with some of the highest quality Internet available, allowing Mr. Nordahl and his neighbors lightning-quick access to the World Wide Web. High-speed broadband is a rare luxury for the 2,600 or so brave souls living here. In the land many consider the northernmost human dwelling in the world, inhabitants cope with inconvenience as a way of life.
Our friend Fil says his new high score is 51,568.
On March 12, 1989, British computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee proposed an “information management” system that would become known as the Web. We celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of his world-changing invention on the first edition of our new weekly feature, Newsweek Rewind. We dug through our archive and pulled our first article about the Web, from our October 31, 1994 issue. Below, you’ll find the full text of the piece, “Oh, what a Tangled Web,” by Barbara Kantrowitz with Adam Rogers and Jennifer Tanaka.
Oh, What a Tangled Web: New Hope for Navigating the Internet
By Barbara Kantrowitz, Adam Rogers and Jennifer Tanaka
This summer, while you were still trying to figure out how to plug in your PC, the technoliterati were tooling around something called the World-Wide Web and touring a piece of software called Mosaic. The web is a system for linking information through the Internet’s international network of computers; users have access to sound, graphics, and text not available through traditional Internet connections. Just a few months ago, Mosaic was hailed as the latest salvation of Western civilization (or, at the very least, a major technological breakthrough). Developed by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) in Illinois, Mosaic was one of the first popular “browsers,” the term for software used to navigate the Web.
In reality, Mosaic can be cumbersome and frustrating to use. But don’t worry. Last week, at the Second International World Wide Web Conference in Chicago, the minds behind the Web and Mosaic concluded that even better stuff is coming to market. A new generation of more efficient browsers should help make the Web accessible to everyone. at the same time, the number of people inventing new ways to use the Web is increasing dramatically, creating a vibrant new Internet culture.
The father of the Web is Tim Berners-Lee, a computer scientist who was working at the European Laboratory for Particle Physics in Geneva, Switzerland, when he first developed it in 1989. Berners-Lee was looking for a way to present scientific information using “hypertext.” With hypertext, certain pictures of words on the computer screen are highlighted; users click on them with a mouse and move to a linked image or page of information. With many choices on the initial screen, each reader would go through the information in a different way.
Berners-Lee originally designed the Web for scientists, but now cyberjocks of all persuasions have hopped on, creating Web “sites”—starting points for hypertext travel—for topics ranging from surfing to Elvis Presley to postmodernism. None of this bothers Berners-Lee. “The Web is designed to represent our knowledge and our communication,” he says. “It should be as diverse as we are.”
Each site opens with a “home page,” similar to a magazine’s table of contents. Highlighted pictures and words mark the spots where users can move on to other topics. Corporations, educational institutions and even individual users have set up their own home pages in the last few months. Each is a little world of its own. For example, the Presley home page features a tour of Graceland; you can move through the different rooms just by clicking. There’s even an evolving status system in individual home pages. Many people write up a short biography; high status comes not from being well-born, but from some sort of link to prestigious places, like MIT’s Media Lab.
In limbo: Mosaic became popular because it is relatively easy to obtain and because it is free. The NCSA estimates that 2 million people use their version of Mosaic. They just call up NCSA through their computer’s modem and transfer the software over the phone lines to their own computers. then the fun—and the hassles—starts. NCSA’s Mosaic works great if you have a very powerful computer and fast modem; if you don’t (and most people don’t), you can spend what seems like an eternity in limbo, waiting for an image on your screen.
That infuriating wait could soon be over with the new browsers. One of the most promising was created by some of the programmers who developed the original Mosaic. Led by Marc Andreessen (an undergraduate at the University of Illinois when he began working on Mosaic in 1992), they’ve formed Mosaic Communications Corp., based in Mountain View, Calif. They expect to start selling their browser, Netscape, sometime in the next few months. Andreessen says Netscape is a completely new product, not just a souped up version of Mosaic. A test version, shown at the Chicago conference with many other new browsers, looks promising; it appears to be much faster and more reliable than NCSA’s Mosaic. It also has snazzier graphics and is easier to use.
Another spinoff is Enhanced NCSA Mosaic, produced by Spyglass, Inc., in Illinois. The company, formed four years ago to commercialize NCSA products, says it has sold Enhanced Mosaic to such major corporations as IBM and AT&T, which means that millions of office workers will soon get to try it. Enhanced Mosaic, though faster than the original version, doesn’t appear to be as quick as Netscape.
At the Chicago conference, developers agreed these products are just the beginning. Several commercial online services plan to include Web browsers in their Internet connections in the next few months and new computer operating systems will probably have tools for Web access. The Web may be still evolving, but it’s definitely worth watching.
On March 12, 1989, British computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee proposed an “information management” system that would become known as the Web. We celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of his world-changing invention on the first edition of our new weekly feature, Newsweek Rewind. We dug through our archive and pulled our first article about the Web, from our October 31, 1994 issue. Click here for the full text of the piece, “Oh, what a Tangled Web,” by Barbara Kantrowitz with Adam Rogers and Jennifer Tanaka.
Because your nostrils split their workload. Throughout the day, they each take breaks in a process of alternating congestion and decongestion called the nasal cycle.
At a given moment, if you’re breathing through your nose, the lion’s share of the air is going in and out of one nostril, with a much smaller amount passing through the other. Every few hours, your autonomic nervous system, which takes care of your heart rate, digestion and other things you don’t consciously control, switches things up and your other nostril does all the heavy lifting for a little while.
The opening and closing of the two passages is done by swelling and deflating erectile tissue - the same stuff that’s at work when your reproductive organs are aroused - up in your nose. The nasal cycle is going on all the time, but when you’re sick and really congested, the extra mucous often makes the nostril that’s on break feel much more backed up.
There are at least two good reasons why nasal cycling happens: And Mental Floss explains why…)
Graham Bell skis Sochi downhill with handheld camera (by Dave Conker)
We should hire this guy.
[Edit: If you’re one of the many who asked where the numbers come from.]
During and immediately after the State of the Union address, the overall reaction on Twitter was more negative than positive and virtually the same as last year’s verdict. The Pew Research Center used a combination of computer algorithms and human coding to analyze the reaction on Twitter in terms of the topics discussed as well as the sentiment expressed.