China, India Superpower? Not so fast!: Tired of reading "the inevitable rise of ..." stories? UC Berkeley's Pranab Bardhan argues that it's not going to be a cakewalk.

Weird and wonderful vocabulary from around the world: Ever needed a word meaning "to try out a new sword on a passer-by"? You're in luck, if you know Japanese. Welcome to the wonderful world of language.

In Finland's Footsteps: So, who wants a 170,000 euro speeding ticket? A Washington Post Associate Editor talks about equal opportunity in Finland and the U.S.

Charlotte's Webpage: Maybe not the most rigorous analysis ever, but quite an interesting thought piece on computers, the Internet, and education.

Rethinking the Social Responsibility of Business: Whole Foods founder and CEO John Mackey takes on the King of profit-is-King, Milton Friedman, over what business is all about. Unapologetic hardcore capitalist and Cypress Semiconductor founder and CEO T.J. Rodgers joins in the fray, too, but the real show is Mackey vs. Friedman.

The Slow Drowning of New Orleans: The Washington Post takes a deeper look at the inevitability of the New Orleans disaster -- and it's not just about emergency planning.

'The Only Lifeline Was the Wal-Mart' and For Fedex, It Was Time to Deliver: Two major companies step up to the plate and put their incredible infrastructure and logistics networks to work in New Orleans.

Don't listen to authority: Wired reports on NIST's 298-page draft report, Occupant Behavior, Egress, and Emergency Communications, which apparently confirms the argument that ignoring advice from 9-1-1 responders and pre-established safety rules (e.g. take the stairs, not the elevators) saved lives on Sept. 11, 2001.

Ibrahim Ferrer: The Cuban singer, made internationally famous through Ry Cooder's Buena Vista Social Club project, died the day before -- and was consequently overshadowed by -- Canadian Peter Jennings, ABC's news anchor for more than 20 years, who succumbed to lung cancer. Meanwhile, six months after taking his own life, gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson literally went out with a bang (sadly, it must be noted, for a second time).

Chaoulli v. Quebec: Read the full text of the Supreme Court's decision striking down Quebec's ban on private healthcare insurance.

The Death of Environmentalism: Global warming politics in a post-environmental world: The increasingly well-known article that is ruffling feathers and giving pause for thought.

Galaxy Quest: With a nod to h2g2, Paul Boutin hails Wikipedia as the true realization of Douglas Adam's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. (As my partner noted, however, in some ways Wikipedia shares more characteristics with Adams' Encyclopedia Galactica.)

Wild camels in Australian gun sights: First it was elephants in Africa, now this.

Ottawa's best local blog: The Ottawa Citizen's Alex Munter is looking for Ottawa's best local blog. He'll be reporting on his choice this Saturday.

Trivial Pursuit: What classic board game, created in 1979, is on the decline?: Slate's Bryan Curtis on the boardgame that was much, much more than just a boardgame.

Ottawa's best local blog: The Ottawa Citizen's Alex Munter is looking for Ottawa's best local blog. If you like Lana's Place and Thyme as much as I do, let him know.

(c) The Ottawa Citizen

Now serving no trans fat: Is the "war on trans fats" a distraction from, er, bigger problems? [You can watch a quick ad to read material if you're not registered.]

Politician's promises not set in stone, court says: Newsflash: It turns out politicans can break election campaign promises. An Ontario Superior Court mocks the Canadian Taxpayers Foundation.

No Picture Tells the Truth. The Best Do Better Than That.: NYT Public Editor Daniel Okrent takes on the controversy surrounding the newspaper's decision for a front-page tsunami photo.

The De Soto Delusion: Chronicle of Higher Education writer John Gravois argues in Slate that De Soto's world-famous solution for battling poverty -- property rights leading to access to capital -- isn't getting results in the field.

Roads gone wild: Would you walk out backwards into traffic with your eyes closed? Hans Monderman does, in a world where road architecture, rather than signage, guides traffic.

The evolution of manufacturing: I haven't encountered one of these before -- it's a NYT "sponsored archive." This one is sponsored by PeopleSoft and features articles dating back to a 1909 Henry Ford-penned piece. Interesting!

They shoot elephants, don't they?: Cull? Neuter? Wait it out? Elephant populations appear to be recovering dramatically -- possibly too dramatically. Now what? [You can watch a quick ad to read material if you're not registered.]

Spyware on My Machine? So what?: Computer users are increasingly blasé about the behaviour of spyware software (and family!) installed on their system.

Missing the hybrid moment: Are U.S. car companies fixated on a hydrogen future making a mistake in letting their Japanese counterparts lead the hybrid movement? [You can watch a quick ad to read material if you're not registered.]

Santa's sweatshop: Ask not what your gaming company can do for you; ask what you can do for your gaming company. Electronic Arts is in the hotseat for running its employees ragged and flying in the face of state employment laws.

The Faith-Based Encyclopedia: A former Editor-in-Chief of the Encyclopaedia Britannica writes about Wikipedia.

O.k., so this isn't reading ... ever wondered what sounds llamas make? Wonder no more. Instead you can wonder about why I found this link.