Coming Soon: New Faces in This Space

By James Fallows

There are all sorts of things I "plan" to catch up on. Like,

-      

How I finally learned to run again, after thinking that chronic Achilles tendon troubles meant the end to those adventures, plus the doctors and savants and shoe-theorists who gave the best and worst advice;
 
 -      Or, how you should feel about the new MacBook Air (covetous -- because it offers, as the original MBA did not, enough speed and power to serve as a "real" machine);

HondaJet_FF_12-20-2010_c.jpg-       Or, what about that new Honda Jet (at right -- check with me later);

-    Or, whatever happened to the JSF/F-35, whose hopeful origin I described here and whose current (predictable?) problems are described here and here;

-      

Or, what's the most interesting, malleable, and exciting current "software for thinking" (check very good and thorough reviews by Steven Zeoli of many of the candidates I find most intriguing, all indexed here; also, any writer not considering Scrivener 2.0, now both PC and Mac, is wasting time, as Zeoli explains here);
 
-     
Or, what's up with the new cybersecurity site I mentioned, SENDS (see for yourself);

-    Or, what finally happened with those Chinese pills, about which I've received a ton of discussion (and how their results compared with a big dose of antibiotics I eventually got from the "mainstream" doctor);

ATT00014.jpg-    Or, the incredible finale to the "oh those tidy Dutch!" saga, with a machine (right) that automatically extrudes a blanket of brick-paved road;   

-    Or, what's in store with the long-unloved (by me) search engine Bing, which in one recent assessment is closing the gap on Google;

-      Or, what's happening to the Beijing skies and the Chinese environment (great resource here);

-    Or, why it's fun to see a Dreaming in Chinese site take off;

-    Or, beer.

And a million more. But I'm not likely to get to any of them for a few months. After four-plus years of regular updates and many years before that of sporadic 'Atlantic Unbound' postings, I am going off-line  -- and on-leave, and for a while back to China -- in observance of the "let's get serious now" stage of finishing a book set in China.

I am really excited by the prospect of introducing in a few days a highly varied squadron of guest bloggers, who will appear in week-long stints in teams of three or four. They'll start next Monday, in a first group that includes: a serving foreign ambassador in Beijing; an accomplished tech-world industrial designer; a pilot and writer whose work is already familiar here; and a teacher and essayist. In subsequent weeks we'll have scientists, people from startup companies, software designers, air traffic controllers, high school guidance counselors, "normal" bloggers, etc. The idea will be to have balanced representation of the main fields of human knowledge -- China, software, politics, beer, aviation, rhetoric, journalism, frogs, the greatness of China Daily, and so on -- and people from different parts of the world, different walks of life, etc.

I expect to do at least one item on Hu Jintao's state visit to Washington this week (including the Hu-Obama press conference going on at this moment), and on the State of the Union address after that, and perhaps on other occasions as they arise. I'll also post a note each weekend introducing the new week's team. I plan to let incoming messages pile up during this period. So if you write, I will get to it, but not for a while. If you have messages for guest posters, we'll set up a way to feed them to the right people.

Thanks for your attention, and enjoy the new crew. See you here again in April.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/personal/archive/2011/01/coming-soon-new-faces-in-this-space/69562/