Open Thread 175

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This is the weekly visible open thread. Odd-numbered open threads will be no-politics, even-numbered threads will be politics-allowed. This one is odd-numbered, so be careful. Otherwise, post about anything else you want. Also:

1: A few people have emailed me saying they submitted entries to the Book Review Contest that neither ended up as a finalist nor in the runners-up packet. All reviews should be in one of those two places, so if that happened something went wrong. In two cases it was your fault for sending me inaccessible Google Docs, and in a few cases it might have been the spam filter, but in at least one case it seems to have been a clerical error on my part. If this is you, I'm sorry. In compensation, if you choose to put your review up somewhere, I will link to it from an Open Thread. I'll also let you include it in any future book review contests here even if you put it up elsewhere in the meantime. If this is you, please send me an email about it. If you've already sent me an email, I've lost your name, so please remind me about it.

2: The most recent example of this is Homemade Multibody Dynamics' review of Ernst Cassirer's Essay On Man. Go there and read it so I feel less guilty about screwing up.

3: The comment policy and register of bans is back This was a beloved SSC institution and you have worked hard to earn its reinstatement (this is not a compliment, don't feel good). So far most of the bans have been for talking about how wrong somebody is without providing any arguments against them. Check the register if you don't know what I mean.

4: This is your last chance to vote for book review runners-up. Check out the runners-up packet (A-R here, S-Z here), choose a review at random, rate it on a scale of 1-10 here, rinse and repeat as many times as you care to. I’ll probably promote two runners-up to finalists, close voting and post them this Thursday and Friday, then have final voting next week. Thanks for your patience with this protracted contest. This year’s survey will include a section on whether you enjoyed the book review contest and whether we should do it again.

5: I haven’t noticed the same number of political blowups here as on SSC. Should we lift the no-politics-on-odd-numbered-open-threads restriction?