5 Great Reads

The Parsi Sweet Tooth: If you don’t know about the Parsees, then you should learn more about them. They are a very unique people and part of the demographic quilt that is India. They do so many things well (so, perhaps it comes as no surprise that Queen’s Freddy Mercury came from a Parsi family). … Continue reading 5 Great Reads

The Golden Age of Half-Truths

Long ago, in a time before the iPad, YouTube and even the Internet, we our entertainment came from stories told to us in books or by our parents and grandparents. Some kids were lucky enough to have access to magical, technological marvels like televisions and radios, but we were not that class of people. My mother used to read me stories from Indian mythology, and nothing got me more excited than the Mahabharata. Decades later, whenever I find myself thinking a lot about the difficulty of distinguishing what is actually real in our modern news cycles, I often go back to one of the stories in that epic tale.

Here is the CliffsNotes version: Continue reading “The Golden Age of Half-Truths”

What’s Worth Reading

This selections are from weekly newsletter, that is shared with subscribers over the weekend. “It doesn’t matter how many people hate your brand as long as enough people love it.” Phil Knight, Nike. WHAT I READ THIS WEEK Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox: Lina Khan’s been reading my journal, or so it seems because I am in … Continue reading What’s Worth Reading

7 Stories To Read This Weekend

I hope everyone is having a great weekend and enjoying the slow pace that comes with the holidays. I am enjoying my Christmas break and taking time to slowdown and think about what comes next, both personally, professionally and philosophically. More on that in the coming weeks, but in the interim, here are seven stories that might be worth reading during this long holiday break.

  • Who will claim you? This memoir of placelessness by Akwaeke Emezi, a recent recipient of a 2015 Morland Writing Scholarship will touch your heart and make you wonder about the world, its border, ethnicity and most importantly, about being an immigrant of the soul. One of the best things I read this week. http://bit.ly/1MeQeyt 
  • Let’s stop pretending that we give a damn about climate change: Christie Aschwanden, an independent writer and essayist writes about the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change that recently concluded in Paris. The historic agreement generated a lot of headlines, but as she explains nothing really has changed. It “contains no binding targets and is essentially just an aspirational document,” she notes and adds,”this new agreement provides only empty words until the member states decide to take real action.” My feelings exactly. http://bit.ly/1Os3ZRW
  • The Siege of Miami: Elizabeth Kolbert, one of my favorite writers brings climate change to a level that most people can understand. Alternatively, nothing like falling real estate values give Americans a reality check.  http://bit.ly/1IP1d6Q
  • The Commercial Zen of Muji: Muji is a well designed, minimalistic and brandies version of Japanese Zen lifestyle, that exists mostly in a catalog. Fuji “is a neat paradox, like a Zen koan: massive minimalism through perpetual growth,” writes Silvia Killingsworth for the New Yorker. http://bit.ly/1Ppn320
  • The Transatlantic Data War: Europe is fighting back against the NSA. Foreign Affairs magazine investigates. This has big implications for Silicon Valley giants. http://fam.ag/1NBaoa2
  • Is Facebook luring you into being depressed? A very good question. http://bit.ly/1lZygL8
  • ISIS is a revolution: Argues Scott Atran, a director of research in anthropology at the CNRS, École Normale Supérieure, and a senior research fellow at the University of Oxford. Writing for Aeon magazine, he points out that it is “dynamic, countercultural movement of world-historic proportions spearheaded by ISIS,” and why the world (especially the west) is underestimating this revolution. A very sobering essay. http://bit.ly/1IZaIAq [Additional reading: Inside the surreal world of ISIS propaganda machine. http://wapo.st/218GQrf]

Here are a couple of things I wrote:

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Rebooting ‘7 Stories to read this weekend’ Newsletter

It is two years to the date when I left the company I started, mostly to scratch my itch to write everyday about things I loved about technology, sometimes boring, sometimes arcane, but mostly important to me. And two years ago, I also stopped writing my weekly email newsletter — 7 Stories to read this weekend — that collected some of the (non-tech) stories that I found interesting. It was about exposing the technology-centric audience to alternative narratives.

In the time that has passed, I have lost control of the email list, which I had painstakingly built over the years. That loss made me realize how much I enjoyed the process of reading, contemplating and curating the newsletter.

Yesterday, I had breakfast with Jason Hirschhorn, who edits popular email newsletter, MediaRedef, and he encouraged me to pick up where I left off. So did my pals, Hiten Shah and Arjun Sethi. It was exactly the right last bit of push I needed, to restart that newsletter.

I don’t want to do the exact same thing I was doing earlier — so instead of curating purely non-technology narrative journalism, I am rebooting it as “a weekly newsletter that explores the confluence of technology, business, art, science & society.”

I will also share links to some of my writing, whether on my own blog or elsewhere. I hope you can join me in this new beginning, by signing up to recieve my weekly email newsletter: http://tinyletter.com/ommalik