Britain to upgrade only 148 Challenger 2s – The Royal Brigade Combat Team! The Times of London reckons that makes them the world’s 56th-largest tank operator. I’ve finally started reading Britain’s Future Navy, which parvusimperator loaned me a while back, and it’s similarly depressing—not only because of the Magic Shrinking Armed Services, but also because the Queen Elizabeths were supposed to carry F-35Cs when the book was written.
Preparing for a digital Pearl Harbor – The most important point out of this one is that we should be training sailors, aviators, tankers, and others who interact directly with combat technology the casualty drills for computer system failures, not just physical world failures.
The Invention of the Salvator Mundi – On the history behind the most contentious painting attributed to da Vinci. The art world remains divided on its legitimacy, but private buyers certainly don’t—it recently went at auction for a few hundred million dollars.
Notre Dame burns – This link isn’t a great story. I was hoping for something with more detail on the progress of the fire and its causes. It doesn’t really count as news, either, since I’m sure you’ve heard about it already, but it was a sad day for European history1 and one worth noting.
There was a secret private server for the late lamented MMO City of Heroes – I was more of a City of Villains man, myself. It stayed secret for six years—that is, from about 2013 to just recently, and was run by a group calling itself the Secret Cabal of Reverse Engineers (SCORE for short). It’s hard to imagine a much more on-brand news story. In other lamented MMO news, I discovered that Pirates of the Burning Sea is still online and still active. That was one of my all-time favorites—enough depth to the sailing and combat models to appeal to me, while still being accessible enough to appeal to the average pirate fan.