Every Friday I highlight the most interesting or entertaining items from my media diet of the past week.
- AI Is an Ideology, Not a Technology (wired.com): Thoughful piece from Jaron Lanier and Glen Weyl. “An understanding of AI focused on independence from—rather than interdependence with—humans misses most of the potential for software technology.”
- Asterisk (github.io): Everything you ever wanted to know about the typographical symbol.
- The Best Way to Resolve Your Shame (markmanson.net): “Shame isn't some boogeyman we must overcome in order to be happy. It's a universal emotion we can learn to deal with in healthy ways.”
- The Cycle of Life (spirals.blog): It’s a cliché that life’s a carousel, but it’s worth reminding ourselves of this fact—especially during hard times.
- The First Amendment in the Age of Disinformation (nytimes.com): The spewing of falsehoods isn’t meant to win any battle of ideas. Its goal is to prevent the actual battle from being fought, by causing us to simply give up
- The Friends Who Drove a Bus Behind the Iron Curtain (bbc.com): Lighthearted piece about a group of students who purchased a double-decker bus in Scotland and then drove it 7500 miles to Istanbul and back in 1968 amidst the Cold War.
- How ‘Am I the Asshole?’ Created a Medium Place on the Internet (theringer.com): AITA is a public forum for conflict resolution; it’s like the modern equivalent of Dear Abby, but crowdsourced.
- How to Waste Your Career, One Comfortable Year at a Time (substack.com): “Treat [career] complacency like cancer.”
- How Spotify Is Killing the Open Podcast System (singhkays.com): Market pressures to better monetize and control the podcast ecosystem are pitted against the medium’s longstanding principles of non-exclusivity and free distribution.
- In 1989, USC Had a Depth Chart of a Dozen Linebackers. Five Have Died, Each Before Age 50 (si.com): Tragic story about the steep physical and psychological toll of football.
- Inside the Strange New World of Being a Deepfake Actor (technologyreview.com): Incredible (and somewhat disturbing) look at how seemingly authentic deepfake videos are made.
- The Inside Story of MacKenzie Scott, the Mysterious 60-Billion-Dollar Woman (medium.com): How do you stake out your own identity and path in the world when your ex-husband is the richest man in the universe? Interesting look at the reclusive novelist, philanthropist, and first employee of Amazon.
- The (Mostly) True Story of Vanilla Ice, Hip-Hop, and the American Dream (theringer.com): Robert Van Winkle had the hottest selling album of 1990, the first rap song to top the Billboard Hot 100, and became a pop culture phenomenon. By 1991 he was parodied, critically panned, and on the decline.
- Our Mind-Boggling Sense of Smell (nautil.us): “How your brain processes the complex chemistry of smells is closer to doing mathematics than mapping.”
- The Ezra Klein Show: Fareed Zakaria (vox.com): Conversation about China, American exceptionalism and foreign policy.
- Heavyweight: Jimmy and Mark (gimletmedia.com): Poignant account involving four boys who went on a 240 mile unsupervised bike trip in 1974. 45 years later we learn about the different ways that trip impacted each of those boys.
- Hidden Brain: Beyond Doomscrolling (apple.com): Guest Steven Pinker talks about the challenges of seeing progress and good when everyone is focused on what’s wrong with the world.
- Naval Ravikant on Happiness, Reducing Anxiety, Crypto Stablecoins, and Crypto Strategy (tim.blog): Ravikant engages in a 2-hour conversation with Tim Ferriss. Good stuff.
- Not Overthinking: How to Understand Things (apple.com): The Abdaal brothers discuss a blog post by Nabeel Quereshi as well as the ideas of Seymour Papert and Constructionism—learn through making and experience.
- Work Life: How to Remember Anything (apple.com): Adam Grant talks to Joshua Foer about memory palaces and improving your ability to remember.