How to make a space elevator in Tuesday’s Reddit Digest

Today on Reddit, Stephen Wolfram answers your questions and the longest discussion ever about space elevators. If only there were a way to combine those two threads!


Kevin Morris

Internet Culture

Published Mar 6, 2012   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 8:30 pm CDT

Want to read Reddit but don’t have the time? Our daily Reddit Digest highlights the most interesting or important discussions from around the social news site—every morning.

  • This is the longest discussion you may ever read about space elevators—which is fine, because space elevators are awesome. (/r/askscience)

  • Nearly 40,000 people subscribe to r/lgbt, but the place has been a mess of moderator and user conflict for over a month. There’s been so much sustained fighting it’s hard to keep track of it all. If you’re curious about what’s been going down, redditor Xincedie wrote up a three-part recap yesterday. (That’s right, it couldn’t all be contained to one or even two.. Here they are. (/r/SubredditDrama)

  • Stephen Wolfram is a very smart guy and the eponymous creator of Wolfram Alpha, the natural langauge search engine used by Apple’s Siri. He touched down at r/iama yesterday for a few questions. He even shared his thoughts on a Millenium Prize problem—you know, those math problems that are so hard they still haven’t been solved. What I really wanted to know, however, was what he thinks about space elevators. (/r/IAmA)

  • The editor of Fast Company magazine, Robert Safian, also took to r/IAmA yesterday. Despite his enthusiastic and well-thought out responses, the AMA hardly broke about 25 points. Fast Company is doing some really innovative things with online publishing, but Safian’s largely ignored post shows they’ve yet to make waves on the “front page of the Internet.” (/r/IAmA)

  • A top post in r/politics points out the obvious: Redditors upvote sensationalist posts without first thinking about or even reading the content. As the top comment explains: “Reddit is living breathing proof that sensationalist propaganda works … People will upvote a headline that confirms their previous bias without investigating further.” r/politics, in particular, has a history of misinterpreting and sensationalizing legislation. (/r/politics)

  • What happens when a site gets a Reddit traffic boost, and how does it compare to other online communities? This analysis of Reddit’s r/programming community, which compares it to Twitter and Hacker News, provides an interesting look at how redditors behave off and on Reddit. One key takeaway: “Very very few people who read a blog post go back to the link aggregation site and vote on it: About 100 to 1 points to visitors seems about right; if a story has 100 points, its likely 10K people read it. That’s right; two orders of magnitude!” (/r/programming)

Did I miss something? Let me know in the comments!

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*First Published: Mar 6, 2012, 11:04 am CST