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This week, we cried for Orlando. And loved for it too. Bernie said No to Donald, but conspicuously not Yes to Hillary. Russia was banned from Rio. Google praised a grandma whose queries included “please” and “thanks.” Facebook predicted the end of the written word (lol). China cut the ribbon on Disneyland. Germany surrendered to Austria, the new world champions of nude sunbathing. Astronauts prepared to come home. Meat Loaf collapsed onstage. And the end of the Milky Way was nigh. Starry, starry night.

Between national quizzing competitions and trivia nights in pubs the world over, just what, exactly, is our fascination with useless information? For The Point, Christopher Fenwick gives us his theory on the “aesthetics of questions.”

At its best, quizzing is fueled by a certain curiosity. It sees an inherent, even aesthetic, interest in atypical nuggets of information: that Mozambique’s flag features an AK-47, that the composer Jean-Baptiste Lully died of gangrene after stabbing his foot with a conducting baton, that Gérard de Nerval walked his pet lobster Thibaud on a blue silk ribbon. These facts may not be central to our understanding of the world, but they do make it more colorful.

There’s nothing we can say about Orlando. Every time we try to find words, we just end up with empty, outturned hands. Instead, we share this poem from Christopher Soto: All the Dead Boys Look Like Me.”

Sometimes you come across a work of satire so majestic, so detailed, so brilliant, that no words can do it justice. Here’s The Neu Jorker.

In a review of Tom Vanderbilt’s latest book You May Also Like: Taste in an Age of Endless Choice, Jessica Johnson worries that the capital-L Like is a sign of our diluted ability to love. From the point of view of big data, the meanderings of taste represent just another kind of noise to be filtered, sorted, and leveraged. But if that were the whole story behind our preferences, we wouldn’t bother grasping at connection with The Overprint.

Some markers of privilege are so mundane we barely even recognise them. Take this one: 75 percent of the world's population have no street address, regardless of whether they have a home. Following the lead of several big NGOs, Mongolia has officially turned to a startup with a cool idea—a simple combination of three words can represent any 9-square-meter point on earth—to help with this problem. But outsourcing the problem to a private database provider, no matter how well intended they might be, is bound to come with consequences for those it’s intended to help.

Caity Weaver’s Kim K profile for GQ is everything you needed on a Saturday morning in bed, ever since Paper Magazine broke the internet. Among the highlights: “‘Even though I’m an ass girl, Kanye always says my boobs don’t get as much credit as they deserve.’”

Ev Williams built Blogger, the software that first introduced the masses to blogs; then he co-founded the podcast company Odeo before podcasts were even a thing; then he helped turn it into Twitter. Now the CEO of Medium, Williams talks to Robinson Meyer at The Atlantic about an open web that’s broken apart, and how he plans to save it

In Yes, There Have Been Aliens,” astrophysics professor Adam Frank radically reframes the possibility of other civilizations out there. He points out that science sometimes progresses not through new discoveries but by finding a different question to ask—one “that can be answered with the data at hand.” Sometimes the world changes not with a bang but a pivot table.

Say what you like about Harpers publisher Rick MacArthur (we say he’s a brilliantly entertaining, old-fashioned, old-money madman whose refusal to acknowledge the actual new world of journalism around him will one day be the death of that fine magazine, though possibly after his own), but this Poynter interview is a fun, wrongheaded read. What did Alan Rusbridger ever do to him?

It’s easy to mock Marissa Mayer for failing to raise the sunken ship of Yahoo. But could anybody have made a difference? This is Gizmodo’s exhaustive list of the fate of her 53 acquisitions—partly for forensic interest, but also as one of the best catalogues of bad startup names we’ve seen. Pity the poor folks who worked at Ptch.

When keeping in touch is so easy these days, why let anybody go? The phenomenon of ghosting in the dating scene has turned into its subtler, even more nefarious opposite: welcome to the world of benching.

With the announcement of iOS 10, is Apple more like a middle-aged dad than ever, or is the fiction of ultimate Apple Man giving way to a more diverse user base? Either way, an iTunes gift card still makes a great last-minute Father’s Day gift. Not that youve forgotten.
Love, the OP
The Overprint is a weekly newsletter from The Alpine Review. It's put together by Anna DuckworthEli Burnstein, John Di Palma, Patrick Pittman, and Chris Lange.
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