Benjamin Bratton: What’s Wrong with TED Talks

Our problems are not puzzles to be solved. This metaphor implies that all the necessary pieces are already on the table, they just need to be rearranged and reprogrammed. That’s not true. Innovation defined as puzzles and rearranging pieces and adding more processing power, is not some big idea that’s going to disrupt the broken status quo: that precisely is the broken status quo.

What’s Wrong with TED Talks? — Benjamin Bratton at TEDxSanDiego 2013

Via Nikolay.

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Do What You Love?

Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life! Before succumbing to the intoxicating warmth of that promise, it’s critical to ask, “Who, exactly, benefits from making work feel like nonwork?” “Why should workers feel as if they aren’t working when they are?” In masking the very exploitative mechanisms of labor that it fuels, DWYL is, in fact, the most perfect ideological tool of capitalism. If we acknowledged all of our work as work, we could set appropriate limits for it, demanding fair compensation and humane schedules that allow for family and leisure time.

And if we did that, more of us could get around to doing what it is we really love.

Miya Tokumitsu — In the Name of Love (Slate)

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The Mystery of Guns in America

…one which baffles most of the rest of the civilized world

You can have guns for hunting. You can have them to ward off Mexican drug lords or whoever is going to storm into your house. Keep them there, in a locked safe. And if we by chance ever need a well-regulated militia for a revolution or zombie apocalypse, by god, we’re going to be really happy you were born with a micro-penis.

Matt Bors — Dear Gun Nuts

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Write Something Worth a Damn

Honestly, when I see another article about how you should do things as an entrepreneur I reflexively reach for the ‘bullshit e-mail, delete it now’ button. What kind of entrepreneur tells other people about how to entrepreneur? An entrepreneur that’s not entrepreneuring. Because if they were seriously entrepreneuring they’d be too busy to tell other people how to entrepreneur. Also, entrepreneur.

Gary Rogers — Write Something Worth a Damn

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And Lisbon is next

Berlin has always hosted poverty better than other European capitals, but this time around, Berlin has embraced an economic model that makes poverty pay. The idea is to cash in on Berlin’s cachet by branding it as a “Creative City”—but it is also, to judge by what has happened, to gut public services, to sell off public housing, and to strategize about new ways of turning taste into profit. This new Berlin is a city where imaginative expression supports, directly or indirectly, a grand scheme for making a small number of people rich. One of these days, some lucky Berliners and expats will finally attract venture capital from London, Palo Alto, and Boston. But the others—the scenic poor and the clever unemployeds who make the city so attractive—will find it ever more difficult to make ends meet.

Quinn Slobodian and Michelle Sterling — Sacking Berlin

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Weihnachtsgeschenk aus Deutschland

Heute kam ein Geschenk aus Deutschland mit der Post. Ich bin mir nicht genau sicher, was ich getan habe (oder vielleicht hab’ Ich eben gar nichts getan), um es zu verdienen, aber wünsche euch allen ein sehr frohes Weihnachtsfest. Ich weiss’ nicht wie Ich mich bedanken soll, und hoffe dass es kein Plan ist, um mich für die nächsten 2 monate wach zu halten.

Danke WPDE.ORG!

DSC_0016!

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Recurrence

Despite all the years, receiving my Amazon order always summons the same excitement.

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Err in the direction of kindness

Now, one useful thing you can do with an old person, in addition to borrowing money from them, or asking them to do one of their old-time “dances,” so you can watch, while laughing, is ask: “Looking back, what do you regret?” And they’ll tell you. Sometimes, as you know, they’ll tell you even if you haven’t asked. Sometimes, even when you’ve specifically requested they not tell you, they’ll tell you.

George Saunders’s Advice to Graduates

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