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Why learning more isn’t always better – The Startup – Medium
The key to success appears to be regulating our knowledge intake, while putting the information we acquire into action.
The less we obsess about staying up to date on the latest books, podcasts and informational trends, the more time we have to create.
And isn’t that what our five-year-old selves would have wanted?
*****  counterintuitive  unschooling  productivity  learning 
26 days ago by gpe
14 Writing Tips from Anne Lamott
1. Write regularly, whether you feel like writing or not, and whether you think what you’re writing is any good or not.
2. Give yourself short assignments. Keep it manageable so you don’t get overwhelmed.
3. Write sh**ty first drafts. (I’m not being prissy about the word choice, just don’t want to get hung up in spam filters.) Don’t expect a piece of writing to flow perfectly out of your fingers on the first go. Of all the points she makes, many people seem to find this one the most helpful.
4. Let the Polaroid develop; in other words, observe, watch, listen, stay in the moment, until you understand what you want to write about.
5. Know your characters.
6. Let the plot grow out of the characters.
7. “If you find that you start a number of stories or pieces that you don’t ever bother finishing…it may be that there is nothing at their center about which you care passionately. You need to put yourself at their center, you and what you believe to be true or right.”
8. Figure out ways to jam the transmissions from Radio KFKD, the interior station feeding doubts and criticism into your brain. Especially about jealousy of other writers.
9. Have pen and paper ready at all times. (She always carries an index card.)
10. Call around. Ask for help.
11. Start a writing group.
12. Write in your own voice.
13. Being published brings a quiet joy, but it doesn’t transform your life, and eventually you have to write again.
14. “Devotion and commitment will be their own reward.”
list  writing  howto  *****  productivity 
27 days ago by gpe
Landing Page Guide: Advanced Copywriting and Design
A great homepage isn’t a nicety. It’s your first impression. The better your first impression, the better your customer acquisition efforts perform.

So treat it as diligently as you do your product itself.

Consider how around 75% of your site traffic will leave after only seeing your homepage.

That's what I mean by "first impression." So, don't waste it.

Not wasting it means following the proven template. Don't do something unique unless you have a good reason to. The more you detour from this template, the more confused the average visitor will be: You'll make it more laborious for them to identify what your company does and why they should care about it.

In other words, the template makes what your company does self-evident. It prioritizes clarity, brevity, and directness.

What it doesn't care about is design innovation. Instead, you should be innovative in the other areas of your growth funnel — like your ads and your product features. But not your homepage. Typically, people just want information quickly.

So don't stand in their way.
marketing  writing  *****  fixagraph  howto 
27 days ago by gpe
The 'Future Book' Is Here, but It's Not What We Expected | WIRED
Our Future Book is composed of email, tweets, YouTube videos, mailing lists, crowdfunding campaigns, PDF to .mobi converters, Amazon warehouses, and a surge of hyper-affordable offset printers in places like Hong Kong.

For a “book” is just the endpoint of a latticework of complex infrastructure, made increasingly accessible. Even if the endpoint stays stubbornly the same—either as an unchanging Kindle edition or simple paperback—the universe that produces, breathes life into, and supports books is changing in positive, inclusive ways, year by year. The Future Book is here and continues to evolve. You’re holding it. It’s exciting. It’s boring. It’s more important than it has ever been.

But temper some of those flight-of-fancy expectations. In many ways, it’s still a potato.
books  publishing  trends  future  *****  wired  infrastructure  ideas 
28 days ago by gpe
How To Be A Better Writer: 6 Tips From Harvard’s Steven Pinker - Barking Up The Wrong Tree
Here are six of Steven’s tips for good writing:

Be visual and conversational. Be concrete, make your reader see and stop trying to impress.
Beware “the curse of knowledge.” Have someone read your work and tell you if it makes sense. Your own brain cannot be trusted.
Don’t bury the lead. Clarity beats suspense. If they don’t know what it’s about they can’t follow along.
You don’t have to play by the rules, but try. If you play it straight 99% of the time, that 1% will really shine.
Read Read Read. The English language is too complex to learn from one book. Never stop learning.
Good writing means revising. Never hit “send” or “print” without reviewing your work — preferably multiple times.
howto  list  *****  fixagraph  editing  writing 
28 days ago by gpe
Delve Fonts - Fonts and Type Design - Fleisch by Joachim Müller-Lancé
Would be great with a geometric sans.


This blackletter pair has the same weight, similar proportions and is inspired by lettering that the designer, Joachim Müller-Lancé recalls from child­hood. For example, the 1950’s “Fleischer­fach­geschäft” logo of the German Butchers Guild. Fleisch also harks back to German 1920’s typefaces, droll picture books, newspaper advertising, cigar box labels and such. A bit of a remix, Fleisch is not based on any particular era, region or style of black­letter.

Focusing on the modularity of brokenscript as his basic idea for Fleisch, Joachim found his own approach: Letters aren’t just made up from lines of varying thickness. The ways in which the inside ‘negative spaces’ interact with their outside containers, and the spaces between letters, feel more important. Brokenscript appears mainly built from hexagonal shapes caused by the nib of the quill. To challenge this rule, Fleisch introduces a rectangular hole into that base hexagon, most visible in the “o”
tobuy  typography  *****  geometric  fun  blackletter 
august 2018 by gpe
Directory | Illustration Tools
Awesome collection of illustration tools, including some for running a small business.
freelance  *****  entrepreneur  business  tools  mytools  illustration 
august 2018 by gpe
Binging with Babish sandwich bread

400 ml water
Packet of instant yeast
650g all purpose flour, divided
50g sugar
5g salt
90g unsalted butter, divided
Plastic wrap
Parchment paper
A little oil



In a bowl, combine 100 ml of warm (110°F) water with one packet of instant yeast and 325g of the all purpose flour along with 50g of sugar, 5g of salt, and 45g of unsalted butter at room temperature.

Stir to combine before adding 300 ml of water and stirring to create a pancake batter like paste, and then add the remaining 325g of flour and stir until a shaggy dough forms.

Turn out onto a counter top and knead for 7-9 minutes until a smooth supple dough forms.
Generously oil a large bowl and place the dough inside. Roll the dough around a little to make sure it’s evenly coated in oil.

Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to an hour until the dough has doubled in size.

Turn out onto a lightly floured countertop and punch down until it’s back to its original size and then start forming into a loaf. Make sure to tuck it under itself to make sure it gets that nice loaf top.

Place in a loaf pan that is coated with butter and parchment paper and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Let sit at room temperature for one hour until it has doubled in size.

Brush the loaf down with butter and place in a 400° oven for 25-35 minutes.

Remove from the oven and brush it down again with some more butter and let sit overnight.
food  *****  recipe  tomake  bread 
august 2018 by gpe
Your Friendly Guide to Colors in Data Visualisation | Chartable
Favorite tweet:

Two years ago, I published a blog post in which I explained the most important color tools for data vizzers. Many people told me they found it helpful. So this week I took the time to update & improve it:

— Lisa Charlotte Rost (@lisacrost) July 31, 2018
tools  *****  visualization  data  color  mapping  design  mytools 
august 2018 by gpe
How Technology Grows (a restatement of definite optimism) —Dan Wang “I consider Definite Optimism as Human Capital to be my most creative piece. Unfortunately, it’s oblique and meandering.”
Let’s try to preserve process knowledge. The decline of industrial work makes it harder to accumulate process knowledge. If a state has lost most of its jobs for electrical engineers, civil engineers, or nuclear engineers, then fewer young people will enter into these fields. Technological development slows down, and it turns into a self-reinforcing cycle of decline.

I think we should try to hold on to process knowledge.

Japan’s Ise Grand Shrine is an extraordinary example in that genre. Every 20 years, caretakers completely tear down the shrine and build it anew. The wooden shrine has been rebuilt again and again for 1,200 years. Locals want to make sure that they don’t ever forget the production knowledge that goes into constructing the shrine. There’s a very clear sense that the older generation wants to teach the building techniques to the younger generation: “I will leave these duties to you next time.”

Regularly tearing down and rebuilding a wooden temple might not sound like a great use of time. But I’m not sure if local priorities are entirely screwed up here. These people understand that it’s too difficult to write down every instruction necessary for building even a single wooden structure; imagine how much more difficult it is to create instructions for a machinery part, or a chip. Every so often we discover ancient tools of which we have no idea how to use. These shrine caretakers have decided that preservation of production knowledge is important, and I find that admirable.

Building a vast industrial base and practicing learning-by-doing used to be the American way. Brad DeLong again: “When the technologies of the second industrial revolution arrived, the United States with its cotton and wide market, and its rich natural resources, and its communities of engineering excellence, was able to leap ahead—and in fact greatly surpass Britain in manufacturing productivity pretty much everywhere. So that the 20th century became an American century, rather than a second British century, in large part because of the bets Hamilton had induced the United States to make on not simply following comparative advantage.”
ellul  industry  future  geography  history  futurism  *****  globalization  politics  technology  economics  trends  manufacturing 
august 2018 by gpe - McClain's Printmaking Supplies - 3/8" Shina
An 8 x 10 block of shina plywood is actually a decent value here.
wood  *****  hobby  woodcut  tobuy  woodworking  craft 
march 2018 by gpe
NANETTE - SoHo Playhouse
Hannah Gadsby's swan song tour, in NYC.
*****  comedy  travel  tosee  nyc  tobuy 
february 2018 by gpe
F37 Foundry: Bergman
F37 Bergman is a revival of Hans Möhring’s Florida typeface. The Swedish director Ingmar Bergman consistently used Florida in his films — always presented in stark black and white. This inspired us to digitalise the font whilst creating a matching lower-case with 4 new weights.
We loved Möhring’s juxtaposition of the tapered stems and the geometric thick and thin lines, making it perfect for luxurious branding and editorial work. We’ve also injected a bit of modernity into the design by creating numerous ‘Herb Lubalin’ style ligatures, as well as stylistic diacritics.
font  typography  *****  tobuy  sans  fun  film 
february 2018 by gpe
Writing for an academic journal: 10 tips | Higher Education Network | The Guardian
1) Have a strategy, make a plan
2) Analyse writing in journals in your field
3) Do an outline and just write
4) Get feedback from start to finish
5) Set specific writing goals and sub-goals
6) Write with others
7) Do a warm up before you write
8) Analyse reviewers' feedback on your submission
9) Be persistent, thick-skinned and resilient
10) Take care of yourself
academic  howto  writing  journal  list  *****  mytools  resources  guardian 
february 2018 by gpe
Novo Typo - Fonts
Bixa and some other great faces.
typography  fun  *****  tobuy  color 
february 2018 by gpe
3 Ways to Build a Sustainable Meditation Practice - YouTube
1. Pick an amount of time you can do *everyday*. Expand from there.
2. If possible, try to establish a particular *place* & *time* for meditation.
3. Find times throughout the day to build a "walking practice" where you reengage with the world of your experience in a mindful way.
mind  mindfulness  meditation  health  howto  video  *****  mytools  habits 
february 2018 by gpe
Nobel Prize-winning economist Angus Deaton thinks we're asking all the wrong questions about inequality — Quartz
To Deaton, there are other economic and social processes that propagate inequality, and they’re unfair.

Healthcare financing. Each year, the US wastes a trillion dollars ($8,000 per family) more than other wealthy nations on healthcare costs, with worse outcomes. Healthcare jobs grew the second fastest in 2017, but wages were largely flat, leading hospital workers to unionize for higher pay. Healthcare financing cuts wages for the average American too—most employer-sponsored healthcare benefits are actually taken out workers’ paychecks (paywall), not a pure company perk.

Mergers. Many industries, like tech, media, and healthcare, are now run by a few, large companies. But mergers rarely boost the wages of workers. Because of hospital mergers, hospital prices have risen, while hospital wages have not (even during a decade-long shortage of nurses). Big companies have an easier time manipulating public policy to accrue profits, instead of making money through innovation and investment.

The sluggish federal minimum wage. The federal minimum wage, at $7.25 an hour, hasn’t budged since 2009. According to a 2017 YouGov Survey, 66% of US adults would like to see the minimum wage raised to $10.10. But the policy change usually faces resistance in Congress, where wealthy firms and donors exert disproportionate influence.

Diminishing worker power. Twenty percent of workers sign non-compete clauses, which prevent them from taking on side-hustles, reducing their incomes and bargaining power. What’s more, over half of non-union, privately employed Americans—some 60 million people—have signed mandatory arbitration agreements, which means they can never sue their employers.

The rise of temps. Companies are increasingly replacing full-time, salaried workers with contractors. Janitors, servers, and maintenance staff who once worked for wealthy companies now work for independent service corporations that compete aggressively against each other over pricing. Contractors often live paycheck to paycheck, without benefits, and with little opportunity for promotion.

The growth of the stock market. While the stock market rewards innovation, it also incentivizes companies to shuffle resources from labor to capital. As median wages have stagnated, corporate profits relative to GDP have grown 20% to 25%. That number would be even higher if executive pay was tracked as profits instead of salaries.

Corporate wins in politics. “We have entered a period of regulatory bonfires,” writes Deaton. Both the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the 2010 Dodd-Frank legislation are under attack. Trump plans to gut 75% of regulations, and may roll back a rule that requires money managers to prioritize their clients’ interests. All the while, the US Supreme Court has ruled that corporations can act as political entities—spending unlimited amounts to support candidates and the lax legislation they will eventually push.

Deaton takes heart from these problems. They’re not a consequence of seemingly unstoppable forces like globalization and technology, but of a dysfunctional economy.

And with the right policies, they can be reversed.
economics  politics  inequality  policy  *****  interview  questions  globalization  corporation 
february 2018 by gpe
Why India is buying the world’s emptiest airport
The Chinese takeover of Hambantota port only increases New Delhi's worries that it will become an Indian Ocean hub for the Chinese navy. But, in fact, Hambantota has never been feasible as a full blown Chinese naval base. Its proximity to India would make it highly vulnerable to air attack in the event of conflict between the two countries. But short of war, Hambantota would make a fine logistics point for an expanded Chinese naval presence. Although Colombo has repeatedly claimed that no Chinese naval facility will be permitted in Sri Lanka, New Delhi worries that China's influence will one day reach a point where the Sri Lankan government simply cannot say no.

This is where the world's emptiest airport comes in. India is proposing to spend around US$300 million to buy out Sri Lanka's debt to China in return for a 40-year lease over Hambantota airport. But India's future plans for the airport are hazy. Maybe a flight school? A new destination for Indian weddings? There seems little chance that it will turn a profit.

That is not the point of the deal. A key element in any overseas naval base, and even a logistics facility, is easy access by air for people and supplies. A naval base also requires maritime air surveillance capabilities. Control over Hambantota airport will give India considerable control over how the port is used. It is difficult to conceive of the Chinese navy developing a significant facility at Hambantota without also controlling the airport. In short, India is spending US$300 million buying an airport to block a Chinese naval base.

The long and twisted saga of Hambantota is emblematic of growing strategic competition in the Indian Ocean region, much of it focussed on ownership and access to infrastructure. In coming years, we are likely to see a lot more jostling between India, China and others in the Indian Ocean over control of ports, airports and other pieces of critical infrastructure – and perhaps increasingly for control over governments.
infrastructure  china  india  airport  aeriality  *****  international  port  maritime  sri.lanka 
january 2018 by gpe
Rooney™ - Webfont & Desktop font « MyFonts
So warm and clear.
Rooney is based mainly on old-style serif construction principles, such as the angle of stress, the open letterforms and the medium contrast, which lends the typeface a serious feel. Nonetheless Rooney is equipped with rounded shapes and soft curves that add a warm and smooth overall impression. Rooney combines these two different approaches: It has distinctive, original letterforms, but remains very readable and versatile. It includes six weights from Light to Black and Italics.
typography  tobuy  serif  rounded  *****  fun 
january 2018 by gpe
Custom Posters from Pictures
From a Reddit comment: printed me a 5'x5' photo of the Hubble Ultra Deep Field(high res warning) that I couldn't be happier with. The paper they use seems to be pretty high quality, the picture quality is great, and I hear their customer service is awesome (though I personally haven't had to use it). Shipping is $4.99 - I only ordered the one poster, but their website says "unlimited posters, one shipping fee" so I would assume that it's just a flat $4.99 no matter how many posters you get (or $9.99 if you're outside the US).
art  photography  poster  printing  mytools  *****  tobuy 
january 2018 by gpe
How to Be an Anticapitalist Today
There is thus an inherent tension between the real and the utopian. It is precisely this tension which the idea of a “real utopia” is meant to capture. The point is to sustain our deepest aspirations for a just and humane world that does not exist while also engaging in the practical task of building real-world alternatives that can be constructed in the world as it is that also prefigure the world as it could be and which help move us in that direction.

Real utopias thus transform the no-where of utopia into the now-here of creating emancipatory alternatives of the world as it could be in the world as it is.
leftism  capitalism  politics  cooperatives  wikipedia  cooperative  *****  jacobin  library  policy  socialism  utopianism  ubi 
january 2018 by gpe
Carrd - Simple, free, fully responsive one-page sites for pretty much anything
Simple, free, fully responsive one-page sites for pretty much anything.
webdesign  tobuy  mytools  simple  ***** 
january 2018 by gpe
ALS Lamon™ - Webfont & Desktop font « MyFonts
Lamon is a soft-natured display typeface. It looks best when used for short words and succinct phrases. Lamon’s outlined glyphs are made of both uppercase and lowercase letters with the smaller letters hiding inside the bigger ones. The face’s smooth lines give street signs, packaging and decorative materials a friendly lightness, while the unexpected contrast involves the viewer in an interesting optical game. Lamon is a perfect typeface for neon signs.

In addition to Cyrillic and Latin letters, Lamon includes a set of useful characters and currency signs.
sans  typography  *****  tobuy  fun  script 
january 2018 by gpe
Electric Letterland — Typographics Blog
Kate Widdows is a letterer, illustrator, designer, and neon GIF maker. She’ll be sharing her thoughts and methods for building neon GIFs on Friday, June 16, in the TypeLab at Typographics. We asked Kate to prepare a sample of the kinds of content she’ll cover in her TypeLab presentation …

Among the pantheon of image file types for web, the lowly GIF format once appeared to be marked for certain death. Originally built as a super-compressed static image file, GIFs are limited to a maximum of 256 colors, and are generally unkind to gradients, subtle shadows and mixed opacities. The success of this compact, looping file format can be attributed to three things: ease of use, simple browser compatibility, and aesthetic nostalgia. No matter your pronunciation preference, today GIFs are so ubiquitous that scarcely would we recognize the landscape of our online lives without them.
gif  art  fun  *****  typography 
december 2017 by gpe
Bernhard Fashion - Webfont & Desktop font « MyFonts
This is a typeface from 1929 but many of the letterforms are almost geometric and reminiscent of ITC Avant Garde. It seems ripe for a reboot.
typography  fun  typeface  *****  sans  tobuy 
october 2017 by gpe
Palatino Sans Informal
I'm not a fan of Palatino, but the Sans and Sans Informal letterforms are fun. They're mostly fresh but have a slight taste of the 1960s/70s.
typography  typeface  fun  sans  *****  tobuy 
october 2017 by gpe
Keep Your Identity Small
More generally, you can have a fruitful discussion about a topic only if it doesn't engage the identities of any of the participants. What makes politics and religion such minefields is that they engage so many people's identities. But you could in principle have a useful conversation about them with some people. And there are other topics that might seem harmless, like the relative merits of Ford and Chevy pickup trucks, that you couldn't safely talk about with others.

The most intriguing thing about this theory, if it's right, is that it explains not merely which kinds of discussions to avoid, but how to have better ideas. If people can't think clearly about anything that has become part of their identity, then all other things being equal, the best plan is to let as few things into your identity as possible. [2]

Most people reading this will already be fairly tolerant. But there is a step beyond thinking of yourself as x but tolerating y: not even to consider yourself an x. The more labels you have for yourself, the dumber they make you.
identity  culture  philosophy  politics  religion  *****  bias 
september 2017 by gpe
FontShop | Conrad
One of my faves.
The award-winning Conrad was created by Japanese type designer Akira Kobayashi. Its design was based on the fifteenth-century type by Conrad Sweynheym and Arnold Pannartz, two German printers active in Rome at that time. They produced a unique, slightly unbalanced yet attractive type. Kobayashi says of his typeface, "I have designed a couple of typefaces inspired from the past, but this time the original print acted merely as a reference. The distinctive lowercase 'a' and some other letters were inspired by Sweynheym and Pannartz's second roman type, but I revived the type in a more informal way. Here I used the historical type as a springboard. The resulting type looks different, taking on a rather temporary and lively look. I assume that the Conrad is the first revival of the Sweynheym and Pannartz type, though it does not closely resemble the original." Conrad won first prize for the text typeface category in Linotype's Third International Typeface Design Contest (2000) as well as the Certificate of Excellence in Type Design from the Type Directors Club (2001).Since 2001, Akira Kobayashi has been working as the Type Director at Linotype.
typography  typeface  history  serif  *****  tobuy 
august 2017 by gpe
Fatype: Baton
Baton is perfect.

Baton Turbo is a grotesque that combines a simple straightforward formal approach, with eccentric letter shapes inspired by french vernacular typography. We love the naive and unpretentious elegance of our previously released Baton, but the small x-height and condensed proportions make it very specific: it is essentially intended for display sizes and short texts. We wanted to adapt Baton into a versatile typeface, while maintaining as much of the original character as possible. All the design choices — the proportions, the spacing, the number of weights — have been made for Baton Turbo to work well in the various settings that modern typography, both print and digital, present.
typeface  typography  tobuy  *****  fun  sans 
august 2017 by gpe
How to Get a Complete Workout with Nothing But Your Body
Everyone knows exercise plays an important role in our general health, but whether its a lack of motivation, the need to travel to the gym, the cost of equipment, or simply know-how, these supposed obstacles often stand in our way. In reality, all you need is yourself. Here’s how you can get a full-body workout with nothing but your body.
mytools  health  fitness  ***** 
august 2017 by gpe
This is Not a Simulation —The New Inquiry “ASK a liberal who is to blame for Trumpism and guilt falls everywhere but on their own shoulders.”
Whether true or false, the simulation hypothesis changes next to nothing about life on earth, and therein lies the theory’s appeal for the liberal elite: it’s futurism without a substantially different future, progressivism sans meaningful progress, a flash forward to the end of history that bypasses suffering through the present. Simulation theory is the eternal continuation of the same system that entitles Elon Musk, a billionaire seventeen times over, to stop his factory workers at Tesla from forming a union. It empowers Condé Nast, the multinational media corporation who signs Adam Gopnik’s checks, to exist in a perpetual state of layoffs. Why would the few who benefit from this bankrupt arrangement ever want it to end? So far, the aliens that developed the simulation of this world have rigged the game in their favor
neoliberal  theory  Liberalism  politics  *****  progressive  conspiracy  technology  simulation 
august 2017 by gpe
The Politics Trump Makes | Online Only | n+1
“Nothing exposes a hollow consensus faster than the exercise of presidential power,” Skowronek writes. In the coming days, we’ll see if he’s right. But lest Trump’s opponents on the left draw too rosy a conclusion from Skowronek’s analysis, The Politics Presidents Make suggests a worrying word of qualification. Though disjunctive Presidents like Carter—and, maybe, Trump—are politically weak, they are Presidents, with considerable resources and powers—some quite violent and coercive—at their disposal. Constrained politically, they are prone to rely on the tools of their office and the executive branch. They compensate for their political weaknesses with robust exercises of state power. If Trump manages to put into effect much of his agenda despite the disjunctive political moment, it may be through the raw force of the executive branch rather than the alliance with the Republican Congress being tested out now.
n+1  trump  history  jimmy.carter  *****  politics  corey.robin 
july 2017 by gpe
America's Political Economy: Leaving 50 % behind ... the very latest from Piketty, Saez and Co. – ADAM TOOZE
The fact that pre-tax incomes for the least favored half of American’s citizens have not risen, but have fallen slightly over the last forty years ought to be a show stopper. Literally, all other policy discourse should surely cease. Insofar as there is any kind of reformist agenda it has to focus on this overwhelming and dramatic fact, which implies the breakdown at the heart of global capitalism, of any meaningful relationship between national economic success stories told in terms of GDP and the actual experience of half the population.

Clearly, also, this is the stark reality that frames the frantic, confused and utterly misguided economic nationalism of the current political moment. The perversity is only magnified by the fact that a large portion of the people who have been “left behind” are not “WHITE working class”, but working people of every other color.
wealth  *****  usa  economics  inequality  poverty 
july 2017 by gpe
Why time management is ruining our lives | Oliver Burkeman | Technology | The Guardian
But the modern zeal for personal productivity, rooted in Taylor’s philosophy of efficiency, takes things several significant steps further. If only we could find the right techniques and apply enough self-discipline, it suggests, we could know that we were fitting everything important in, and could feel happy at last. It is up to us – indeed, it is our obligation – to maximise our productivity. This is a convenient ideology from the point of view of those who stand to profit from our working harder, and our increased capacity for consumer spending. But it also functions as a form of psychological avoidance. The more you can convince yourself that you need never make difficult choices – because there will be enough time for everything – the less you will feel obliged to ask yourself whether the life you are choosing is the right one.

Personal productivity presents itself as an antidote to busyness when it might better be understood as yet another form of busyness. And as such, it serves the same psychological role that busyness has always served: to keep us sufficiently distracted that we don’t have to ask ourselves potentially terrifying questions about how we are spending our days. “How we labour at our daily work more ardently and thoughtlessly than is necessary to sustain our life because it is even more necessary not to have leisure to stop and think,” wrote Friedrich Nietzsche, in what reads like a foreshadowing of our present circumstances. “Haste is universal because everyone is in flight from himself.”
productivity  death  *****  efficiency  time  mytools  counterintuitive 
july 2017 by gpe
Beyond Resistance
Our unwillingness to admit our own weakness is the flip side of not having a clear set of principles that can serve as the basis for a mass movement. Instead, we give ourselves the appearance of unity and purpose by resisting evil and by taking our collective “No” out into the streets. We find comfort in knowing that we are not them, that at least we are doing something. Trump is immediate and present, the evils are right in front of us, numerous, and ready-to-hand.

There is no doubt that some protests have a marginal and valuable effect, most visibly in the case of the partial reversal of the immigration ban. And all protest provides the frisson of doing something against policies that are inarguably wrong. But that sense of purpose is not the same as a positive principle or an organization that you are winning people towards. It is, instead, an appeal based on fear, on resisting evil.

fear  freedom  politics  *****  movement  trump  usa  democracy  leftist 
july 2017 by gpe
Democracy Without the People | Online Only | n+1
EMPHASIZING INSTITUTIONS and norms as the essence of “democracy” has a history—one that comes from denying other, more radical definitions of the concept. The idea of democracy as an elaborate system of checks and balances enforced by a combination of constitutional law, informal norms, competing interests, and the distribution of socio-economic power across a plurality of groups, first crystallized in the 1930s. This was when American political scientists felt the need to define a uniquely “American” model in explicit contrast to “totalitarianism.” But for subsequent elaborators, this model (referred to as “pluralism” or “liberalism”) also could provide an alternative to democracy in the robust sense of “rule by the people.”
In 1956, Robert Dahl’s seminal A Preface to Democratic Theory coined the term “polyarchy” in explicit contrast to “populistic” theories of democracy (consisting of “political equality, popular sovereignty, and rule by majorities”). In Who Governs? (1961), an empirical study of polyarchy at work in New Haven, he deployed the concept to argue against the notion that the United States was ruled, as C. Wright Mills and others had put it, by a “power elite”—and that the stability of American polyarchy was in part due to the disengagement of American citizens. Dahl’s conceptualization accustomed countless students of democracy to insipid pluralism, handily justifying existing power relations and institutions. It remains pervasive in comparative studies of democracy and in the measurement of democratic consolidation. Witness the political scientist Jan-Werner Müller, who in his recent essays on populism for the London Review of Books and the Guardian, has defined the essence of democracy as “presenting citizens with options.” Meanwhile populism gets branded as “principled antipluralism."


our critique of Trump, and our determined political resistance to Trumpism, should not rest on venerating an ideal democracy we have never really achieved.
trump  democracy  *****  counterintuitive  politics  history 
july 2017 by gpe
Drawdown maps, measures, models, and describes the 100 most substantive solutions to global warming. For each solution, we describe its history, the carbon impact it provides, the relative cost and savings, the path to adoption, and how it works. The goal of the research that informs Drawdown is to determine if we can reverse the buildup of atmospheric carbon within thirty years. All solutions modeled are already in place, well understood, analyzed based on peer-reviewed science, and are expanding around the world.
*****  howto  politics  climatechange  climate.change  list  policy 
july 2017 by gpe
Authoritative, Readable, Branded: Report from Poynter Design Challenge, Part 2 - Zeldman on Web
Any newspaper, however poor, can afford better typography. Any newspaper with a designer on staff can attain it, if the paper stops treating design as a lackey of marketing or editorial or advertising, and sets designers free to create great reading experiences.

In my work, which is still underway (and will continue for some time), I focused on creating what I call “reader” layouts (and probably other designers call them that too; but I just don’t know). Layouts that are branded, authoritative, clean, uncluttered, and easy to read.

I played with type hierarchies and created simple style guides. Most of my little pages began as Typecast templates that I customized. And then Noël Jackson from my studio cleaned up the HTML and CSS to make it more portable. We put the stuff up on GitHub for whoever wants to play with it.

Reader layout
mytools  *****  list  reading  webdesign  minimalism  design 
july 2017 by gpe
Typographic Doubletakes | News, Notes
While good typefaces have prodigious families of carefully related styles, some of the best typography builds unexpected relationships between unrelated fonts. Here are five ways to create typographic connections, to help keep your design engaging and inventive.
*****  typography  howto 
july 2017 by gpe
Hummus Recipe - NYT Cooking
2 cups drained well-cooked or canned chickpeas, cooking liquid reserved if possible

½ cup tahini, with some of its oil

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 cloves peeled garlic, or to taste

Juice of 1 lemon, plus more as needed

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon ground cumin or paprika, or to taste, plus a sprinkling for garnish

Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish
food  *****  recipes  bittman 
july 2017 by gpe
It's Nice That | Takashi Nakamura’s exquisite line drawings celebrate the quiet moments in life
Japanese illustrator Takashi Nakamura’s fine line drawings of day-to-day happenings range from close crops of fruit and veg and glasses of water, to bigger scenes of parks and libraries. Takashi “grew up reading manga”, and this has influenced his pared-back works that are often composed of precise linework and a faded application of colour.

His focus on the everyday is refreshing, as Takashi changes perspectives from one image to the next and celebrates the unnoticed. “I always like to draw the small things in life as I’m most likely to forget those moments,” he explains. It’s these closer studies that really draw the viewer in, whether it’s a prime spot among the food at a picnic or next to a hand holding a sparkler that’s just about to twinkle.

Takashi’s illustrations are drawn by hand, and he enjoys this analogue approach. “First I make a draft then erase parts of it so there’s just a faint trace of the image. Then I start painting with aqueous pens from there,” he explains. The use of this ink gives his works a soothing, summery vibe and and offer a welcome break from the mundane grey of reality.
art  drawing  illustration  *****  itsnicethat 
july 2017 by gpe
The Vegetable Cookbook You Need - Lucky Peach
Six Seasons: A New Way With Vegetables is the latest in a recent batch of cookbooks (Hugh Acheson’s The Broad Fork, Steven Satterfield’s Root to Leaf) that aim to help readers cook seasonally. Its title refers to the idea that, as far as vegetables are concerned, the concept of four seasons doesn’t really cut it. McFadden instead splits the year into six: Spring, Early Summer, Midsummer, Late Summer, Fall, and Winter. This allows him more nuance with his recipes, which pair same-season produce with punchy, often Italian ingredients like olives, salami, citrus, cheeses, and fresh herbs.

And it passed every test I could throw at it. McFadden’s goal here is “to encourage and energize cooks of all skill levels…in your efforts at seasonal and local eating.” It’s a noble and lofty aim, but Six Seasons accomplishes this in part by providing a monstrous volume of recipes: 225, by the publisher’s count. Imagine going to the farmers’ market—as seasonal, local cookbooks cajole you to do—and returning home with snap peas. On one hand, we have a cookbook that has one recipe for snap peas; on the other, Six Seasons has three, plus advice for preparing them simply. Which one will you reach for again, when you return home with broccolini, or collards, or perfect, tiny sweet potatoes?

Another goal the book achieves is addressing “cooks of all skill levels.” Never before have I seen so many fascinating, delicious, easy recipes in one book. “I hate chef books that presume home cooks have the time, money, and skills—and desire—to replicate restaurant-style recipes,” McFadden writes. “Not to mention the dishwashing staff!”
book  recipes  food  vegetarian  *****  tobuy  lucky.peach 
july 2017 by gpe
FF Franziska fonts from the FontFont Library
The typeface has been conceived as a hybrid of a serif and slab serif which becomes evident when comparing the weights from Hairline to Black. It has a generous x-height and short descenders. The italics have a rather slight angle of slope and playful shapes derived from handwriting. A range of icons including various arrows and signs like thumb up and down complement the usual figure sets, small caps and stylistic alternates.
slab  serif  hybrid  typeface  typography  tobuy  ***** 
july 2017 by gpe
Caslon 540 - Webfont & Desktop font « MyFonts
Beautiful serif. Pairs well with many grotesks.
typography  typeface  tobuy  *****  serif 
july 2017 by gpe
Conrad® - Webfont
The award-winning Conrad was created by Japanese type designer Akira Kobayashi. Its design was based on the fifteenth-century type by Conrad Sweynheym and Arnold Pannartz, two German printers active in Rome at that time. They produced a unique, slightly unbalanced yet attractive type.

Kobayashi says of his typeface, “I have designed a couple of typefaces inspired from the past, but this time the original print acted merely as a reference. The distinctive lowercase ‘a’ and some other letters were inspired by Sweynheym and Pannartz’s second roman type, but I revived the type in a more informal way. Here I used the historical type as a springboard. The resulting type looks different, taking on a rather temporary and lively look. I assume that the Conrad is the first revival of the Sweynheym and Pannartz type, though it does not closely resemble the original.”

Conrad won first prize for the text typeface category in Linotype’s Third International Typeface Design Contest (2000) as well as the Certificate of Excellence in Type Design from the Type Directors Club (2001).
serif  typography  tobuy  fun  ***** 
july 2017 by gpe
Small Victories
Small Victories takes files in a Dropbox folder and turns them into a website.
No CMS, no installation, no server, no coding required.
website  *****  webdesign  dropbox 
july 2017 by gpe
The radical renaissance - Curbed
Architecture students, through manifestos, performance art “happenings,” and other means, attempted to subvert the rationalist modernist ideologies of architects like Le Corbusier and the Bauhaus. “We started discussing relationships between architecture and society and introduced politics in discussing the validity of rationalism and modernism,” says Cristiano Toraldo di Francia, one of the founding members of seminal radical group Superstudio.

For Toraldo di Francia and his peers, an unquestioning belief in modernism masked “the perverse activity of the system in continuously reproducing poverty, new desires, and waste.” The group believed architecture “served to indoctrinate society into an irrelevant culture of consumption” and aimed to extract all that hindered one from living a free life, design critic Peter Lang writes in his book Superstudio: Life Without Objects. Architecture need not yield physical buildings, they felt, but could instead be used to critique the state of the world.

“We started to understand that architecture couldn’t be a discipline all by itself, but had to look at all other disciplines which were commenting on the world, from graphics to painting to sculpture, to cinema and science,” explains Toraldo di Francia.

As a result, much of the radical architecture oeuvre could be categorized as conceptual art, like Superstudio’s arresting collage images, or Gruppo 9999’s light projections on the Ponte Vecchio, which made use of cutting-edge technology of the time.
architecture  protest  history  italy  *****  socialjustice  design  1960s  art 
july 2017 by gpe
Bookmania – Typographica
A staggeringly broad and detailed take on the bookman genre.
typeface  typography  tobuy  fun  serif  *****  history 
june 2017 by gpe
Thresholds of Silence by Kester Freriks (Works That Work magazine)
When you think about aircraft noise pollution, the first thing that comes to mind is often the roar of planes in the sky overhead, but as we cross the polder, we can hear the annoying low-frequency drone called ground-level noise. This is the rumbling din produced mainly during take-off, a noise that propagates just over the surface of the earth. When Schiphol planned the construction of its longest runway, the 3.8km (2.4 mi.) Polderbaan, they publicised its outlying location as a measure that would reduce the impact of ground-level noise on the surrounding communities, but in the end the problem was actually exacerbated. Ground-level noise, particularly in Hoofddorp, but also to the north in Halfweg, Spaarndam and Beverwijk, and even 28km (17.4 mi.) from Schiphol in Castricum, became a perpetual nuisance that ignited years of discussion regarding environmental norms and governmental regulations.

Ground-level noise is notoriously difficult to control, defying conventional sound barriers, but in this agricultural area, farmers have known for centuries that a ploughed field with deep furrows produces a deep, restful silence. By contrast, the flat, dense polder serves as an enormous soundboard, especially in winter when the ground is hard and bare. Jet engines on the Polderbaan, straining at full power to take off, send a booming roar surging out across a level plain that features no hills, valleys or other obstacles to hinder it.
airport  airplane  aeriality  landscape  sound  noise  pollution  europe  netherlands  ***** 
june 2017 by gpe
Bold Monday - independent font foundry of high quality type
"Trio Grotesk is Florian Schick’s personal interpretation of Kaart Antieke — an early 20th century sans-serif used by Piet Zwart in his famous, yet never officially published essay about modern typography called ‘Van oude tot nieuwe typografie’."
typography  sans  grotesk  *****  tobuy  rounded 
june 2017 by gpe
HWT Gothic Round™ - Webfont & Desktop font « MyFonts
Inspired by the sans serif typefaces of the late nineteenth century, Ecam manages to create a very efficient system, while avoiding dated references. Designed as the ideal tool for creating complex typographic compositions, it offers a strong contrast between the understated elegance of its thinest versions (hairline) and the loud presence of its heaviest weights (Black). Ecam can indeed be a very efficient tool for functional design, or a typographic subject in itself, eager to express a lyricism full of contrasts.

To add a touch of extravagance, a set of swash capitals and ligatures come as an ideal finishing touch to customise titles and compositions in the blink of an eye.
typography  tobuy  *****  fun  rounded  serif  grotesk 
june 2017 by gpe
Cheap and Easy Band Saw Advice
The Rockwell Delta 14" is all you need to know.
woodworking  tobuy  *****  home 
june 2017 by gpe
Krana Fat – Schick Toikka
Krana Fat is a peculiar display typeface inspired by the lettering of Finnish graphic designer and illustrator Erkki Toukolehto. Where typical digital type is uniform and systematic, Krana Fat echoes the unpredictable and atypical movements of Toukolehto’s wide, flat brush. But this is an homage, not an imitation: While the forms have a soft contour, there are no faux bristles; nor is there an attempt to mimic handmade strokes. Instead, Krana Fat’s identity is somewhere between typography and lettering. It alternately evokes the shape and character of vernacular signage, hobbyist templates, and those institutional alphabets constructed by teams of engineers.
typography  tobuy  *****  sans  fun  finland 
march 2017 by gpe
Philosopher Richard Rorty Chillingly Predicts the Results of the 2016 Election ... Back in 1998 | Open Culture
As democratic institutions fail, he writes in the quote above:

[M]embers of labor unions, and unorganized unskilled workers, will sooner or later realize that their government is not even trying to prevent wages from sinking or to prevent jobs from being exported. Around the same time, they will realize that suburban white-collar workers—themselves desperately afraid of being downsized—are not going to let themselves be taxed to provide social benefits for anyone else.

At that point, something will crack. The nonsuburban electorate will decide that the system has failed and start looking around for a strongman to vote for—someone willing to assure them that, once he is elected, the smug bureaucrats, tricky lawyers, overpaid bond salesmen, and postmodernist professors will no longer be calling the shots. A scenario like that of Sinclair Lewis’ novel It Can’t Happen Here may then be played out. For once a strongman takes office, nobody can predict what will happen. In 1932, most of the predictions made about what would happen if Hindenburg named Hitler chancellor were wildly overoptimistic.

One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals, will be wiped out. Jocular contempt for women will come back into fashion. The words [slur for an African-American that begins with “n”] and [slur for a Jewish person that begins with “k”] will once again be heard in the workplace. All the sadism which the academic Left has tried to make unacceptable to its students will come flooding back. All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will find an outlet.
rorty  philosophy  politics  labor  *****  prediction  2016 
january 2017 by gpe
Social Media Is Killing Discourse Because It’s Too Much Like TV
Neil Postman provided some clues about this in his illuminating 1985 book, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business. The media scholar at New York University saw then how television transformed public discourse into an exchange of volatile emotions that are usually mistaken by pollsters as opinion. One of the scariest outcomes of this transition, Postman wrote, is that television essentially turns all news into disinformation. "Disinformation does not mean false information. It means misleading information—misplaced, irrelevant, fragmented or superficial information—information that creates the illusion of knowing something but which in fact leads one away from knowing ... The problem is not that television presents us with entertaining subject matter but that all subject matter is presented as entertaining.” (Emphasis added.) And, Postman argued, when news is constructed as a form of entertainment, it inevitably loses its function for a healthy democracy. "I am saying something far more serious than that we are being deprived of authentic information. I am saying we are losing our sense of what it means to be well informed. Ignorance is always correctable. But what shall we do if we take ignorance to be knowledge?"

The problem with today’s Internet, driven less by text and hypertext (hyperlink-enriched text), is that it not only shares many of TV’s ills but also creates new ones. The difference between traditional television and the form of TV that has reincarnated as social media is that the latter is a personalized medium. Traditional television still entails some degree of surprise. What you see on television news is still picked by human curators, and even though it must be entertaining to qualify as worthy of expensive production, it is still likely to challenge some of our opinions (emotions, that is).

Social media, in contrast, uses algorithms to encourage comfort and complaisance, since its entire business model is built upon maximizing the time users spend inside of it. Who would like to hang around in a place where everyone seems to be negative, mean, and disapproving? The outcome is a proliferation of emotions, a radicalization of those emotions, and a fragmented society. This is way more dangerous for the idea of democracy founded on the notion of informed participation.

Now what can be done? Certainly the explanation for Trump’s rise cannot be reduced to a technology- or media-centered argument. The phenomenon is rooted in more than that; media or technology cannot create; they can merely twist, divert, or disrupt. Without the growing inequality, shrinking middle class, jobs threatened by globalization, etc. there would be no Trump or Berlusconi or Brexit. But we need to stop thinking that any evolution of technology is natural and inevitable and therefore good. For one thing, we need more text than videos in order to remain rational animals. Typography, as Postman describes, is in essence much more capable of communicating complex messages that provoke thinking. This means we should write and read more, link more often, and watch less television and fewer videos—and spend less time on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.
internet  media  2016  trump  politics  consumption  entertainment  *****  television  algorithm 
january 2017 by gpe
Air: a breathless report | rhulgeopolitics
I also want to share some news about my own book project Air, coming out in Reaktion’s Earth series which just published its first book Volcano. I had a lot of feedback from the publishers on my first draft last week and I’ve got quite a bit of revisions to do. I think they will certainly improve the book.

The book tries to look at Air as a substance between the scientific, the cultural and the political, concerning themes as wide as the science of climate change, breathing, instruments and technologies, art, literature, early conceptions of air from antiquity, architecture, security, uncertainty, urban health, flying, to the politics of life itself. Not such an easy task! At the moment the contents look something like this.

The Invention of Air
An Excess of Air
Dust to Dust

I hope to say a lot more about this project as I work on the revisions over the next few months. I hope the book will be timely given emergent agendas in geography right now on verticality, the volumetric, aerographies, affective atmospheres and ambience. But the book centrally tries to do things a bit differently with this taken for granted substance for wider audiences, and that’s an exciting challenge.
aeriality  peter.adey  geography  *****  tobuy  toread 
october 2016 by gpe
Key Clack – Get Your Clack On!
The place to get a DIY USB keyboard cable.
keyboard  hardware  tobuy  ***** 
october 2016 by gpe
How to Write Articles and Essays Quickly and Expertly by Stephen Downes
"Begin by writing - in your head, at least - your second paragraph. Your second paragraph will tell people what your essay says." Yes, the title sucks, but there are some good points...
*****  writing  howto  mytools  article  tips 
september 2016 by gpe
Oh, shit, git!
I made a website to explain how to get yourself out of your git messes in plain english
git  mytools  code  *****  programming 
september 2016 by gpe
coconut bread – smitten kitchen
This loaf, once baked, entirely filled and towered above my 9x5x3 (8-cup) loaf pan, so if yours is smaller, you might want to pour off a little batter into greased muffin tins.

2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups (295 ml) milk
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups (315 grams) all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon table salt (see Note)
2 teaspoons (10 grams) baking powder
1 to 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (Bill calls for 2 but I preferred 1, so that it didn’t dominate)
1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
5 ounces (140 grams) sweetened flaked coconut (about 1 1/2 cups)
6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter, melted or melted and browned, if desired
Vegetable oil or nonstick cooking spray for baking pan

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and vanilla.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking powder and cinnamon. Add sugar and coconut, and stir to mix. Make a well in the center, and pour in egg mixture, then stir wet and dry ingredients together until just combined. Add butter, and stir until just smooth — be careful not to overmix.

Butter and flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan, or coat it with a nonstick spray. Spread batter in pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, anywhere from 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Cool in pan five minutes, before turning out onto a cooling rack.
bread  recipes  ***** 
september 2016 by gpe
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