The Washington Post https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/entertainment/best-b...
The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/06/books/review/100-notable-b...
The Economist http://www.economist.com/news/books-and-arts/21679439-best-b...
Among those not already linked upthread or sibling:
Tyler Cowen, fiction and non-fiction:
I've explained it like this: To get on the list, something has to be considered at-least-good by a lot of people, and this tends to reward (1) herd mentality; (2) lowest-common-denominator. The list selects against anything in any niche, even when it's excellent.
As I look back through music that has meant a lot to me, there is just not much overlap with best-of lists.
Note: I'm talking about critics-vote, pooled, best-of lists. Single-critic best-of lists don't average out niche tastes and, for the right critic-listener match, can be very helpful indeed.
Neutral Milk Hotel's "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea", for example, is an extremely polarizing album. Between Mangum's nasally vocals, beginner-to-intermediate technical talent, the inclusion of saws and theramin as instruments; it all adds up to a love/hate affair. I'm not a big fan of any of Mangum's other works, but AOtS has an allure that is just... indescribably gripping.
I don't go around recommending it, but when it comes up in my playlist, I find that I am simply compelled to stop what I'm doing and listen to the entire album, which is thankfully short, as far as albums go.
1. "Tapping into the zeitgeist and participate proactively is great." As you put it so eloquently :)
2. The alternative is to follow your own curiosity and read whatever you really have a hunger for.
Time is so limited it can get hard to choose reading material sometimes.
They also display a bespoke meaning for the stars (i.e. 3 doesn't mean average), so for those that follow that meaning, their ratings will be different.
Why did Amazon purchase Goodreads?
I read 74 books so far this year. Most of them were purchased from Amazon.
Also, Goodreads has an active review community, and good "by reader" data for recommendations (as opposed to Amazon's "by account" data. If Amazon were smart, they'd be working very hard on improving recommendations with their Goodreads data.
A whole bunch of subcategories from the Guardian/Observer: http://www.theguardian.com/books#books-of-the-year
Here's the 2015 version: http://bellm.org/blog/2015/11/27/the-best-books-i-read-in-20...
FWIW, I thoroughly enjoyed Fates and Furies in audiobook format, although it isn't without it's flaws. Critic James Wood gave it a tepid review in The New Yorker.
The Road to Character, David Brooks - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/081299325X
Thing Explainer, Randall Munroe - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0544668251
Being Nixon: A Man Divided, Evan Thomas - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0812995368
Sustainable Materials With Both Eyes Open, Julian Allwood - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/190686005X
Eradication: Ridding the World of Diseases Forever?, Nancy Leys Stepan - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0801450586
Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol Dweck - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0345472322
The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life, Nick Lane - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393088812
https://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=hullo seems to be the person who included some links. They have clearly been here a while, participates constructively, and doesn't seem to spew out a lot of affiliate links (any, actually, that I can see).
Seems like that shipped sailed a long time ago: there are a lot of people who link to their companies, offer jobs, and that kind of thing here. Making money is not a bad thing - spamming is.
If anyone's interested, I hereby offer to spend the entirety of my ill-gotten affiliate gains on beers if anyone ever visits Bend, Oregon.
I think it's pretty clear from people's posting/comment history whether they're adding them in good faith or not.
Here are two good books:
* The Korean War: A History - Little known fact: The US took the wrong side in the Korean War by putting the former officers of the Japanese imperial army in power in Seoul. It committed countless atrocities to achieve its stalemate, including fire-bombing half the country (Germany redux) and using napalm on whole villages, a foreshadowing of Vietnam.
* Old School - A novel by Tobias Wolff. If you're tired of tired prose, try Wolff. He cares about sentences.
But I have no opinion on David Brooks.
"...He has been a reliable producer of out-of-touch, tissue-thin pronouncements on the perils of our secularized, technologized 21st century lives, virtually all of which rightly can be interpreted as passive-aggressive nostalgia for what Family Circus comics told him “outdoors” might have been like when he was a kid. You could just about set your calendar by it: In a month of Brooks, you’d get the call to begin or continue a war with Iraq or Iran, the grasping attempt to paint some cretinous Senator or presidential hopeful as the intellectual heir to Edmund Burke, and then, at last, the decline-and-fall column. You’d see a headline like “The Slow Virtues” or “The Hollow Century” or “Why the Teens Are Despicable,” and you’d know ol’ Dave’s coffee shop was out of plain croissants a week ago and the barista had a nose-ring and he’d decided he’d witnessed the death of the Western moral tradition."
Because meanness stands at the basis of our Western civilization, of which this website is more or less a part of. Think of Cicero's "Catiline Orations", which was an ad-hominem attack through and through, Aristophanes's plays, Lucian of Samosata's works, almost everything written by Swift, Shakespeare's Marcus Antonius's speech, which is another much celebrated ad-hominem, and the list goes on and on. Adversity helps us move forward.
To clarify my earlier point, there are few things as satisfying to read as a witty evisceration of an argument or stance. For a public persona, I don't see much problem with applying it to their wider body of work as long as you think the criticism applies well overall. My earlier statement was fairly ambiguous in this respect.
The author is free to write that. But I'm not going to spread the link.
> Question to Language Log: Is it correct that if you show an American an image of a fish tank, the American will usually describe the biggest fish in the tank and what it is doing, while if you ask a Chinese person to describe a fish tank, the Chinese will usually describe the context in which the fish swim?
> Answer: In principle, yes. But first of all, it wasn't a representative sample of Americans, it was undergraduates in a psychology course at the University of Michigan; and second, it wasn't Chinese, it was undergraduates in a psychology course at Kyoto University in Japan; and third, it wasn't a fish tank, it was 10 20-second animated vignettes of underwater scenes; and fourth, the Americans didn't mention the "focal fish" more often than the Japanese, they mentioned them less often.
From: Reality v. Brooks - http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=19531
http://www.personal.psu.edu/faculty/n/x/nxy906/COMPS/CLT/cul... (full text)
I linked to the other page because it contains links to about a dozen other posts looking into Brooks' writing.
There might be other evidence supporting his general point, but then he should be citing that evidence, not twisting the facts or making things up.
> When the psychologist Richard Nisbett showed Americans individual pictures of a chicken, a cow and hay and asked the subjects to pick out the two that go together, the Americans would usually pick out the chicken and the cow.
As far as I can tell, their critique is correct in that the research Brooks cites isn't enough to support the claims that he wants to make.
Brooks: "If you show an American an image of a fish tank, the American will usually describe the biggest fish in the tank and what it is doing. If you ask a Chinese person to describe a fish tank, the Chinese will usually describe the context in which the fish swim."
The study: (1) Not a real fish tank but short animated vignettes. (2) All the fish were the same size, so anything Brooks says about "the biggest fish" can't possibly apply. (3) The only "context within which the fish swim" was provided by the other fish. (4) The experimental subjects were not "asked to describe a fish tank". They were asked specific questions like "To what extent do the blue fish's movements seem influenced by the other fish?". (5) The differences were not about whether experimental subjects described one particular fish or the context in which the fish swim. (6) The differences found were far smaller than "Americans usually do X, Chinese people usually do Y".
Here's the biggest effect they found: they asked "To what extent do the blue fish's movements seem influenced by internal factors?" and took answers on a scale from 1 to 5: 1 = hardly at all, 2 = slightly, 3 = moderately, 4 = greatly, 5 = almost entirely. In one category of cartoons, which the experimenters term "compulsion", American high-schoolers gave an average answer of 3.17 and Chinese high-schoolers an average answer of 2.56. Second-biggest effect: same cartoons, but now asking "To what extent do the blue fish's movements seem influenced by the other fish?". American: 3.27. Chinese: 3.61.
These, I repeat, were much the largest effects found by the study among the several cases into which they subdivided their findings. For grad students looking at the same category of cartoons, the answers were 3.07 for the Americans and 3.00 for the Chinese (first question) and 3.77/3.82 (second question). Most of the differences they found were of this sort of size, and some of them were in the "wrong" direction.
If you think this study supports Brooks's statement about what happens when Chinese and American people look at fish tanks ... well, I really don't know what to say. It's not even addressing the right question to support (or refute) Brooks's statement, and in any case the results are far weaker than Brooks implies.
I'd summarize it something like this. "Americans are individualists and Chinese are collectivists. No one knows exactly why. Individualist nations have been more successful economically, but looking at China's recent success perhaps that will change. The idea of a harmonious collective might prove attractive, since our relationships are so central to our well-being."
... Except that he adds this snarky last line: "It's certainly a useful ideology for aspiring autocrats." Which seems like it ought to be accompanied by some sort of discussion of what he's afraid of, what might be done to stave off the danger, etc., etc., etc. -- but no, he just stops there.
He seems to be very careless with how he handles the facts from studies he references.
But, his writings on conservative political philosophy is insightful, if not original (not something I care about personally). His old-school Burkean conservatism gives him an internally consistent, rational framework from which to critique or support the current GOP, from the center-right. It doesn't always work, but worth the read nonetheless, imo.
And, like Gates, I like his extension of that political framework as a critique of our current ideals and values.
Communities of Character
"Pop sociologist Professor Brooks is at it again...."
Tales of the Super Survivors
"It certainly does, Lord Brooks..."
The Evolution of Simplicity
"If only excessive materialism and manifold opportunities were the problem in this country. I think Mr. Brooks tends to project his own affluent angst on society at large..."
This is the force, imposed by readers, to homogenize ideologically. The deluge of criticism is to be expected when a high delta exists between a columnist's ideology and their platform's. In an ideological battleground, where vilification trumps truth, I think the burden of assessing quality lies on the reader.
I ran the hub for a BBS network. We had the best offline mail readers back then. The best feature being "twit filters". God I miss twit filters.
If I ever figure out a way to add a twit filter feature to my web consumption, David Brooks will be the very first pundit added to the list.
Eli Pariser alerted us to the dangers of The Filter Bubble. I wish we lived in a world without trolls and useful idiots. Until then, I agreed with Clay Shirky: we need better filters.
I have often seen the sentiment that everything you read should have some kind of educational value or it's just a waste of time.
Does Bill Gates not read fiction? Perhaps he understands that he would be looked down on if he were to include some in his list.
-from a fellow fiction lover
 The Star Fraction, The Stone Canal, The Cassini Division, and The Sky Road.
To return the favor, I recommend you try Blindsight and its sequel Echopraxia, by Peter Watts. Those were two of my favorite books of 2015 (the books are older, but I only found them this year).
Unusual, but awesome, SF.
Speaking of book recommendations, try almost any book reviewed in Jo Walton's collection of essays: *What Makes This Book So Great?. I read and bought about the first half-dozen or so that I hadn't already read, and there was only one that I didn't enjoy thoroughly, and more because it was too much of an emotional downdraft than because it was badly written, which it wasn't at all.
Here let me try. On my non-fiction pile is Clojure for the Brave and True. Look how I'm signalling. I'm bland and inoffensive because its nonfiction. I'm playing the signalling game so you can play along with me. I'm quirky and interesting because its a semi exotic language and paradigm. I'm leading the pack because its new, or at least recently was kinda new, both the book and the language. I'm altruistic and all around nice guy (true story!) because buying the book basically funds the free website. Its a great book to signal because its common and popular enough that if I have to explain the book or its topic or its funding model to you, you probably don't belong on the site (nothing personal, of course, I'm just saying I donno how you'd be here without the common background). Its also a pretty good book. I like the author's writing style and I can signal my good taste to you all.
Now lets try some pseudonymous public declaration of biography. Two days ago I finished "Battle on the Loomba" which is pretty obscure so I'll explain it. This kid (literally a kid) gets drafted into the south african army in the late 80s, and participates in the craziest, most one sided, most dramatic, largest armor battle in Africa in half a century, second only to Rommel's actions in sheer size and intensity. And thats about it. I was slightly disappointed, as a biography of a kid it missed all the strategic / tactical goodness I like. I like wargames and hex based maps with chits all over them. Then again, as a short biography and memoir it was OK and interesting to compare his experiences to my own army service in the USA a couple years later. Now look how horrific the signalling is for this biography. First of all every race now hates me, because race was totally F'ed up in that conflict, so the S.A. govt he was fighting for is hated by the blacks and white progs for obvious reasons, yet the specific fight was to defend a neighboring black country against the Cuban invasion which on the surface appears dumb but the S.A. govt didn't want a failed communist state or civil war state right on their border, well anyway it was complicated and basically every race on the planet can cherry pick a side to hate and transfer that abstract hate of a historical event to me because I voluntarily read the book, which ironically almost never discusses race directly. Also I'm a warmongering bloodthirsty killer because I sometimes read military related books, which is about as stupid as claiming I'm a professional french chef because I've read a few cookbooks in my day, of course hatred and signalling are invariably irrational and illogical. Also its frankly only a so so book, I'd give it an honest 5/10 which means half the worlds books are worse, and that signalling makes me look like an idiot, people are only supposed to signal stuff they are 100% behind as fanatic supporters, so I'm some wishy washy lunatic with bad taste (may even be true!). All reviews "MUST" be either 10/10 or 0/10 rants, wtf can I even claim to be part of modern internet culture without applying that basic rule? Anyway the signalling sucks for biography and fiction, never ever discuss it in public. Ever. Even if you read it, or even if your ghostwriter thinks it would be interesting or great progressive signalling.
Comedy is 50/50. XKCD from the link is safe, but if it was George Carlin or Bill Cosby the race baiters would be out in force. "Yeah Cosby was funny but you know what he, and now by extension, you, did to those young women?" etc etc.
Conversely, My wife consumes nothing but fiction. I find that pretty sad honestly.
I used to read a lot of non-fiction but mostly stopped when i realised a year down the line i retained very little, and i wasn't actually enjoying the read.
I would say they also leave more room for plot development and concise endings. Most shows today drag on for season after season and don't have satisfying culminations. I've also seen very few movies that can make me think like a work of fiction can. Seeing the world through another relatable person's eyes can be a very profound experience.
Ignoring fiction or non fiction is a tragedy in my opinion.
I have no idea how we got to a place where the value of Tolstoy, Cervantes, Flaubert, etc. needs to be defended from Breaking Bad and cinema (not that there's anything wrong with Breaking Bad and cinema). But apparently most people currently seem to be at a point where if they read the first few pages of "Lectures on Literature" they'd just squint their eyes, cock their heads, and proceed to not understand one part of what it means to "remain a little aloof and take pleasure in this aloofness while at the same time we keenly enjoy—passionately enjoy, enjoy with tears and shivers—the inner weave of a given masterpiece"
>Every time is see a post like this I get the urge to pretentiously rant about the ongoing decline of appreciation for aesthetic values.
Everytime I meet someone like you I poke into their true reading habits and its a lot of YA stuff, chick-lit, top 20 pop-culture junk, etc. Just because you read a classic once doesn't mean that the entire medium known as books gets free pass. Sturgeon's law applies to all art if we're being honest with ourselves.
The fact that fiction comes at the cost of reading non-fiction cannot be swept under the rug. Its a completely valid concern. Those in my peer group can tell me all about $popular_scifi and $popular_chicklit but not much else.
Its pretentious to think that fiction is magically superior to all other forms of communication. I think we'll look back at how incredibly overly-entertained we are today and wonder how we lived such shallow lives. That's a narrative no one talks about: how much fiction we're constantly consuming and the incredibly low quality of it all. Most people have the information consumption habits equal to eating junk food for every meal and yet they have the gumption to pretend they're mighty intellectuals on the mountain barking wisdom to us idiots below because they falsely assume consuming carefully crafted fiction designed to sell is some strange esoteric intellectual pursuit. No, its the kid reading some tech manual and building something original who's doing something intellectual and esoteric, not the girl downing Hunger Games, Twilight, and Divergent trilogies on the bus and giving snide looks to the "nerds" around her who don't get "literature." Then she goes from the bus to the boob/youtube and zones out for hours until bedtime then back to work/school. That's a sad life and if you're honest with yourself, you'd agree with me.
The Road To Character: http://www.gatesnotes.com/Books/The-Road-to-Character
Being Nixon: http://www.gatesnotes.com/Books/Being-Nixon
Sustainable Materials: http://www.gatesnotes.com/Books/Sustainable-Materials-With-B...
He was at NASA in Houston today.....
The first is a book about the rise of the shipping container. Really informative and clearly describes the design process behind a technique we've always taken for granted. It's a historical account mainly, starting from the idea all the way to modern day shipping.
The second, which I read through the first few chapters of, describes the origins of the steam engine, but it was a bit bland for my tastes.
Both are interesting books to be frank so I'd recommend at least checking them out.
It's true that Smil's books are packed with facts and ideas about ecology issues.
But much before Smil, Buckminster Fuller had urged every engineer to ask the question 'How much does the structure weigh?' From that starting point, Fuller went on to design geodesic domes and other light weight structures of immense strength and no weight.
Shortly after Bill Gates made Vaclav Smil famous as his go-to person on ecology, Wired got Smil’s take on the problems facing America and the world.
From the Wired article,
> WIRED: Let’s talk about manufacturing. You say a country that stops doing mass manufacturing falls apart. Why?
> SMIL: In every society, manufacturing builds the lower middle class. If you give up manufacturing, you end up with haves and have-nots and you get social polarization. The whole lower middle class sinks.
The share of manufacturing in all jobs has been declining steadily in the US since 1950. The service sector has always had a larger share than manufacturing. The ability of poorly educated males in the US in the 1950s and 1960s was due to limited competition from other countries. Once other countries also built up their educated people, the US wage rates had to suffer, relatively speaking. It does not matter which sector these poorly educated people are employed in – the problem is that they are poorly educated but want high wages, and this is no longer competitive.
> WIRED: You also say that manufacturing is crucial to innovation.
> SMIL: Most innovation is not done by research institutes and national laboratories. It comes from manufacturing—from companies that want to extend their product reach, improve their costs, increase their returns. What’s very important is in-house research. Innovation usually arises from somebody taking a product already in production and making it better: better glass, better aluminum, a better chip. Innovation always starts with a product.
Look at LCD screens. Most of the advances are coming from big industrial conglomerates in Korea like Samsung or LG. The only good thing in the US is Gorilla Glass, because it’s Corning, and Corning spends $700 million a year on research.
Under Smil's nose, Microsoft, Google and Apple and cellphones have changed the world – with hugely disruptive innovation almost equal to the invention of the printing press. But, if you are looking at the wrong place, you will not see innovation that has improved the lives of billions around the world.
> WIRED: Can IT jobs replace the lost manufacturing jobs?
> SMIL: No, of course not. These are totally fungible jobs. You could hire people in Russia or Malaysia—and that’s what companies are doing.
Not the IT innovation jobs. There’s no IT innovation coming from these countries.
> WIRED: Restoring manufacturing would mean training Americans again to build things.
> SMIL: Only two countries have done this well: Germany and Switzerland. They’ve both maintained strong manufacturing sectors and they share a key thing: Kids go into apprentice programs at age 14 or 15. You spend a few years, depending on the skill, and you can make BMWs. And because you started young and learned from the older people, your products can’t be matched in quality. This is where it all starts.
Again looking at the wrong place. The quality of Japanese cars beats almost any manufacturer in the price range. Toyotas are world-class – even beating VW.
> WIRED: You claim Apple could assemble the iPhone in the US and still make a huge profit.
> SMIL: It’s no secret! Apple has tremendous profit margins. They could easily do everything at home. The iPhone isn’t manufactured in China—it’s assembled in China from parts made in the US, Germany, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, and so on. The cost there isn’t labor. But laborers must be sufficiently dedicated and skilled to sit on their ass for eight hours and solder little pieces together so they fit perfectly.
Agreed – Apple could make huge profits even if the iPhone is assembled in the US. But, Apple would not pay them $30/hour, which is what you need to support a lower middle-class life.
> WIRED: But Apple is supposed to be a giant innovator.
> SMIL: Apple! Boy, what a story. No taxes paid, everything made abroad—yet everyone worships them. This new iPhone, there’s nothing new in it. Just a golden color. What the hell, right? When people start playing with color, you know they’re played out.
Agreed that iPhone 5 is no innovation. But, iPhone and iPad did not come from Germany or Switzerland!
> WIRED: Your other big subject is food. You’re a pretty grim thinker, but this is your most optimistic area. You actually think we can feed a planet of 10 billion people—if we eat less meat and waste less food.
> SMIL: We pour all this energy into growing corn and soybeans, and then we put all that into rearing animals while feeding them antibiotics. And then we throw away 40 percent of the food we produce. Meat eaters don’t like me because I call for moderation, and vegetarians don’t like me because I say there’s nothing wrong with eating meat. It’s part of our evolutionary heritage! Meat has helped to make us what we are. Meat helps to make our big brains. The problem is with eating 200 pounds of meat per capita per year. Eating hamburgers every day. And steak.
You know, you take some chicken breast, cut it up into little cubes, and make a Chinese stew—three people can eat one chicken breast. When you cut meat into little pieces, as they do in India, China, and Malaysia, all you need to eat is maybe like 40 pounds a year.
Agreed, if this can be done. But, that’s not the world trend, Chinese per capita consumption of meat has gone up many times in recent years.
I'd say about half that, at least in the Midwest.
It's the opposite of mysticism. It's a great neuroscientist-based look at meditation. I'd highly recommend it if you're interested in meditation but put off by all the mumbo jumbo you get from many other sources of meditation info.
The Blade Itself (3 books)
The Kingkiller Chronicle (waiting on third and final book)
The Stormlight Archive (waiting on third and final book)
There are 3 more books which read like sequels (same world, same heroes).
We've been waiting for years and still no information if this book is even in the works
Ten books are planned in the series. See wikipedia for reference.
[Update: Rather than delete your post, you could have added your impressions of the books (or recommended better ones) and merely mentioned the use of affiliate links.]
Also check out a similar piece on general relativity: http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/the-space-doctors-big...
Fixed mindset - talents, abilities and intelligence are fixed, endowed
Growth mindset - talents, abilities and intelligence are learned and can be developed
These mindsets are learned, and have fundamentally different reactions to challenges.
The two-mindsets model is a simplification for the purposes of explanation.
The growth mindset embraces failure as a necessary part of learning. In fact failure is a indicator of an area for potential growth, if the opportunity is taken to overcome that failure. The fixed mindset avoids and fears failure; it is taken as evidence of a hard limit of your endowed talent.
The growth mindset sees effort as necessary to mastery. Almost any level of mastery may be attainable with the right regimen of practice. Obstacles are a normal part of mastery and must be overcome as a matter of course in order to grow. Criticism is not taken personally, but used to indicate areas for improvement and growth.
The fixed mindset sees effort as producing only small effects compared to their fixed ability. May be more prone to give up in the face of obstacles since it is thought that there is no new mastery to be gained. Criticism is more likely to be taken personally, as the individual identifies with the perceived limits of their ability and thinks that improvement is impossible beyond a certain point.
The growth mindset is not threatened by others’ abilities. Others’ examples may serve to inspire. The fixed mindset is more likely to be jealous of others’ abilities since they are perceived to be highly desirable gifts and the result of luck and circumstance.
Praise children by emphasizing their work and persistence. Do not use labels like “smart” or “gifted” that would reinforce a mindset of fixed abilities.
Growth oriented mindset is more likely to be understanding and ready to learn from experience. Fixed mindset sees problems as a result of unchangeable personal attributes and are pessimistic about change. More likely to have unrealistic expectations, like not having to work at a relationship that is “meant to be”.
Muhammad Ali, Michael Jordan, Babe Ruth and Wilma Rudolph are given as examples of overcoming early setbacks with a growth mindset.
Last chapter is a “workshop” of situations and questions to help you develop a growth mindset.
For people who haven't read it BTW, I highly recommend it, especially if you are a parent.
"Flash Boys: Not So Fast: An Insider's Perspective on High-Frequency Trading" by Peter Kovac
"Snow Crash" by Neal Stephenson
: Books you read primarily for someone kids not included ;-)
I have no idea the process behind this website, but it seems unlikely enough that he'd sit down and write it himself that I can't take it seriously. From what little I read, it doesn't sound like something produced directly from him without first passing through others, at least for formatting and correction.
I think if someone is going to use their personal name on a website, they should actually write it. Otherwise, it's deceptive. If it's going to be a team effort, then call it a different name, and don't show a big picture of your face at the top of the screen.
Upvoting Bill's book list might not mean they like his list, think it belongs at the top of HN, or that they even read the blog post. The top-of-front-page ranking could just be the result of a large number of readers upvoting in order to have the discussion show up in their "saved stories".
edit: A "save story" button that is independent of the voting/ranking mechanism might actually change the front page significantly.