Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
April 26, 2014 8:33 AM

Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #201

Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, Solve For Interesting, the author of Complete Web Monitoring, Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks and Lean Analytics), Hugh McGuire (PressBooks, LibriVox, iambik and co-author of Book: A Futurist's Manifesto) and I decided that every week the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we're recommending to one another:

  • What Tobacco's Past Means for Vaping's Future - PaleoFuture. "The best thing to happen to the Internet in recent memory, in my opinion, is the Explainer. These long-form posts are the equivalent of Neo in the Matrix, plugging in and then waking up saying, 'I know Kung Fu.' I read a fascinating piece on the Google Bus protests a few days ago, which linked Harvey Milk, burrowing owls, the Jim Jones ritual sacrifices, the use of environmental studies to fight bike lanes, and much more -- and wound up with a deeply nuanced understanding of the income disparity problems in Silicon Valley. In that vein, this is a fascinating look at Big Tobacco and the rise of electronic cigarettes." (Alistair for Hugh).
  • This Incredible Animation Was Made By Code That Could Fit on a Floppy - Gizmodo. "When I was much younger, I may or may not have played games on an Apple IIe that weren't from the original sources, strictly speaking. The hacker groups that unlocked games added their own graffiti, in the form of tiny audio/visual animations. This grew into the Demo scene, where crazy-good coders wrote crazy-small code to get graphics and sound chips to do things they shouldn't be able to. More recently, with the advent of high-end graphics and sound cards, the demo movement has focused on generating complex environments using algorithms. The results are beautiful, mesmerizing -- and still tiny. Saying 'this fits on a floppy' is as much of an anachronism as is the idea of writing compact code. But they do, and this is an amazing example of the state of the scene." (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Slavoj Zizek - Big Think. "Slavoj Zizek is - for my money - the most entertaining public intellectual around. Here's a bunch of short clips from an interview on Big Think." (Hugh for Alistair).
  • Goodbye, Net Neutrality; Hello, Net Discrimination - The New Yorker. "Is the Web as we know it dead? With the successful move to walled gardens (Facebook), and apps, the open Web - as we know it - is already under fire. It looks like things will get worse, as a fundamental principle of the Web, net neutrality, comes under fire in the US. This is the principle that your ISP can't decide which websites are faster or slower - so Disney and LibriVox both share an equal and open playing field on the Web. That's about to change." (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Habitable exoplanets are bad news for humanity - The Conversation. "Any time there's this massively cool science news about a livable planet found by NASA that I don't see pumped through the mass media channels, I get upset. It's a bit of a 'get off my lawn' type of thing, where I can't believe the celebrity gossip culture of our world. So, for the past little while, I've been making sure that we're all up to speed on the amazing discoveries about our universe that are being made. I'm getting all pumped up for the fact that Elon Musk really believes that we'll be the first generation of multi-planetary species that we know. Pretty cool stuff. Or not. Depending on what you read. I had never heard of The Great Filter until reading this. Now, I'm depressed. Not excited." (Mitch for Alistair). 
  • Upworthy's Headlines Are Insufferable. Here's Why You Click Anyway - Fast Co.Design. "Admit it, if you saw the headline, 'I Never Thought A Slice Of Pie Would Make Me So Angry' while trolling through your Facebook feed, you would click it. I would. And, that's the problem, isn't it? We would like to think that we're so evolved and not susceptible to listicles or silly linkbait/clickbait... but we are. I'm ashamed to admit, but I am admitting it. So, what makes a headline work? Don't ask me. It turns out (after reading this article), that I'm probably not putting in nearly enough effort to make them click... and neither are you. Talk about the fascinating evolution of persuasion. Read this." (Mitch for Hugh).  

Now it's your turn: in the comment section below pick one thing that you saw this week that inspired you and share it.

By Mitch Joel

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