On the last day of 2019, I set myself a simple goal: I will get back to regularly sharing some of the best articles I read. I don’t think there is a good substitute for personal, human curation – at least, not yet. And yes, what we share does tell others a lot about us. (Anyone who says that retweets are not endorsements is so full of shit.) Personally, I won’t share anything I don’t like or recommend. Why bother wasting other people’s time on mediocre stuff? Our collective time and attention are so precious.
- Welcome to the New Hollywood. A great look at how streaming, the rise of digital platforms, and changing consumption habits are creating a new reality for Hollywood. Don’t be surprised if, in the future, the biggest “cinematic” events are limited to superhero movies and yet another Star Wars edition.
- The lesson to unlearn. In this new essay, YCombination founder and startup evangelist Paul Graham argues that a grades-driven approach to learning isn’t ideal for the long-term education of the mind. I couldn’t agree more. My personal trials and tribulations with college professors were rooted in the fact that I want to learn, not just cram information to get good grades.
- The survivorship bias. Today, there is a healthy ecosystem of advice being given to startups and startup founders by those who have been successful. However, not enough attention is devoted to the reality of startup life: most of us fail and don’t get to gloat about our success. Most of us are entrapped in anxiety and the feeling of disappointing everyone. The successful get to write the rules and history. Highly recommended.
- Amazon, Apple, Google, and others have plans for a new smart home standard. The question is: Will it work? Stacey Higginbotham has her analysis of the news and what it might mean for the future.
- Sales, Lawsuits, and Data. The state of the music business in 2019. A good, informative look back, even for a casual observer like me.
- The Internet Broke the News Industry — and Can Fix It, Too. This is what Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and Orit Kopel of Wiki Voices argue in Foreign Policy. It is a great editorial and worth a read. (I would like to add that greedy and short-sighted executives and media company owners broke the industry because they were too lazy, arrogant and unintelligent to understand the ramifications of the internet to the information ecosystem.)
Things to think about:
- What will racial discrimination look like in the future? Will bias be on perceived and not actual identity? A lot of questions being posed here on the Scientific American blog by Marisa Franco. For me, the bigger question is: How would artificial intelligence perceive biracial people and account for bias against them?
- The raging bushfires in Australia are yet another reminder that we need to declare a state of emergency and start figuring out how to cope and adapt to climate change. What is climate change adaptation, and why does it matter?. Also, it is time to rethink how we model climate.
- A century ago, Annie Jump Cannon helped catalog 300,000 stars based on their hotness. We are still using variations of the same methodology. Cool!
- Should we all be renting instead of buying clothes? Wired UK’s Claire Bergkamp thinks so. However, it is not that easy as human beings aren’t perfectly shaped and — no matter how much technology companies might like to think otherwise — one size doesn’t fit all. Another option is to just buy less (like, only what you actually need).
- The world’s largest science experiment. It is worth watching.