AI Supremacy, Rare Stamps, and Lego Starry Night: Lux Recommends #270

2 min readMar 19, 2021


By Sam Arbesman, PhD

Welcome to Lux Recommends #270, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).


The Secret Auction That Set Off the Race for AI Supremacy: “How the shape of deep learning — and the fate of the tech industry — went up for sale in Harrah’s Room 731, on the shores of Lake Tahoe.” — Cameron

Nature Co-Design: A Revolution in the MakingDeena

He Owns World Famous Stamps and a Prized Coin. Now He’s Selling: ‘Stuart Weitzman, who made his fortune in shoes, is parting with three of his collecting triumphs, including a block of four “Inverted Jennies.”’ — Adam G

A 25-Year-Old PhD Student Just Convinced Lego to Mass-Produce Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’ as an Official Toy Kit: “Truman Cheng submitted the idea to the company, which invites fans to share their ideas for future Lego sets.” — Sam

A multicountry perspective on gender differences in time use during COVID-19Deena

Scientists stunned to discover plants beneath mile-deep Greenland ice: “Long-lost ice core provides direct evidence that giant ice sheet melted off within the last million years and is highly vulnerable to a warming climate” — Adam K

I bought 300 emoji domain names from Kazakhstan and built an email serviceShaq

Bioluminescence of the Largest Luminous Vertebrate, the Kitefin Shark, Dalatias licha: First Insights and Comparative AspectsDeena

What Countries Will Fight Over When Green Energy Dominates: “It’s a question of when, not if, the global economy will shift away from fossil fuels. Researchers are gaming out what that means for international politics.” — Adam K

Is a Long-Dismissed Forgery Actually the Oldest Known Biblical Manuscript?Sam

Sampling of Structure and Sequence Space of Small Protein FoldsAdam G

@DearPandemic: Meet the women answering burning questions big and small about COVID-19: “Should I still be washing all my groceries? What’s actually in each type of vaccine? If you need to know, the scientists, clinicians, and scholars of Dear Pandemic have you covered.” — Deena

Scientists implant “memories” into bird brains to teach them songs they’ve never heardAdam K

The bizarre tale of the world’s last lost tourist, who thought Maine was San FranciscoSam

An ESG Reckoning Is ComingDeena


We Could Be Heroes by Mike Chen: An enjoyable take on superhero stories.— Sam


kid 90: “An intimate look at young Hollywood starlets growing up in the 1990s, using hundreds of hours of footage captured by Soleil Moon Frye.” — Eric Lichtenstein, friend of Lux

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