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William Finnegan's memoir about surfing has more depth than many about other addictions. Nothing, not even his cliched dream of chasing waves, is as uncomplicated as it appears.

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Google on Wednesday officially announced its entry into the fray of contextualized advertising -- serving up advertisements in accordance with a user's prior Web-surfing habits. The move, which has raised alarm in the privacy community, carries an unprecedented privacy twist: Google users will now be able to see and edit the information the company collects about them.

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Want to know why near-death experiences frequently feature tunnels of white, euphoric light? The L Times Book Review recommends picking up a copy of Truthdig contributor Steven Kotler's new book "West of Jesus: Surfing, Science, and the Origins of Belief" to find out

  • Also: the Village Voice gives "West of Jesus" a rave
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    Truthdig contributor Steven Kotler describes in The New York Times Magazine how the mere act of going surfing pulled him out of a near-suicidal battle with Lyme disease and kick-started a quest to explore the nexus of surf, science and spirituality.

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