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27 February 2015

What Blogging Has Become

“What is web writing in 2015? Is it still based on the author model? If you enjoy watching a writer’s mind work over time (or you enjoy having that freedom as a writer), is there still a way to do that? Or is the writer’s-voice-driven Internet over, forever, everything’s atomistic now and it’s no longer possible to scrape an audience together that way even if you want to?”

So many good things in this one that I had a hard time picking a quote. But the questions, about what is web writing, about platforms, about social networks, all very worth thinking about.

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27 February 2015

Unicorns vs. Horses

“Maybe this slow and steady thing isn’t for you. Maybe you’re going to be the next Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk and fit the profile. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t raise money, or that venture capital is inherently bad, just that there’s a big grey area between a lifestyle business and a venture backed moonshot. Raising venture money is a high risk commitment to go big or go home, and it isn’t for everyone. It certainly isn’t right for me, but neither is the surfer lifestyle business. I’m somewhere in the middle, with the Snyders of the world. I’m not a unicorn, I’m a horse.”

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27 February 2015

On Meta-Design and Algorithmic Design Systems

“I envision a design practice that works in the intersection between art, design and computation. A company founded on the belief that the pragmatic and poetic is inseparable, and that modern design products should be dynamic, adaptable systems built in code. This kind of practice would create beautiful, intelligent, and functional design products for any medium, be it physical installations, web applications, or print products. Most of all, it would be a company dedicated to good ideas, with the talent to implement them despite technical requirements.”

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27 February 2015

Meditation and Performance

“As I’ve progressed in my career, my mindfulness practice has progressed as well. No coincidence, then, that I find myself more radical and questioning of our capitalist system at an age (and in a tax bracket) that’s most commonly associated with creeping conservatism. I credit my practice not just for helping me to survive the stresses of work, but for putting that work in context. Sometimes, that new context has led me to serious reevaluations of my priorities.”

The last three paragraphs of this post are stunners. I stopped and reread them twice. The above is the second to last, but the last paragraph is a punch in the gut. Take the time to feel it and to think about what he's saying because I think he's onto something.

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27 February 2015

King David

“And among the many things I am taking from David’s death is to be better with young writers, and young people in general.”

After reading several pieces on David Carr, I'm trying to figure out how I can give back to those younger than me, be they working in the web or not.

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27 February 2015

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20 February 2015

Who Should Pay?

“So yes, I would love a world where preprocessors are unnecessary, but I would much rather spend a few seconds (or even a few minutes) transcompiling my SASS into CSS in order to save my users even a few milliseconds. It’s the same reason I optimize my images, minify my JavaScript, use Gzip, and lazy load design and experience enhancements only in contexts where they provide a real benefit.”

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20 February 2015

What Is Pinterest? A Database of Intentions

“You know why that is? It’s the way the Internet was architected. HTML is the architecture of the web and it is about the presentation of text. It’s Hyper Text Markup Langauge. And if you’re Google and you’re trying to index that world of information, you’re really great at text because that’s what the code on the Internet does. It marks up text. But if you want to get at objects or the things on web pages, we think you need humans to go in and do that for you. So we think of Pinterest some days as this crazy human indexing machine. Where millions and millions of people are hand indexing billions of objects—30 billion objects—in a way that’s personally meaningful to them.”

There are a lot of great nuggets in this piece. You just have to keep reading to find them.