The Ezra Klein Show interviews Nicholas Carr about deep reading and digital thinking.
Axis Praxis on the importance of metaphor.
Great article about comedian Buster Keaton, his stunts and his relationship with spaces and environments, illustrated with GIFs from his 1920s films.
Amy Hoy writes about how early blog engines grew into CMS-es while keeping their chronological content sorting as standard. This brought a focus on datestamped updates to a whole bunch of people who wanted easy websites, but with no need to stamp their content with a publish date.
A surprisingly feelgood history about George Nissen and the invention of the trampoline.
“Writing is hard, but don’t overlook the difficulty — and the importance — of editing your own work before letting others see it. Here’s how.”
Fabricio Teixeira with some great perspectives on familiar problems designers face when communicating with developers.
Superb write-up on how Stripe’s engineering team worked with colors and accessibility.
Interview with behavioral biologist Stephen Pratt about his paper “The Psychology of Superorganisms: Collective Decision Making by Insect Societies”.
“Mary Dash, Chief of the Congressional Correspondence and Quality Review Branch of the Internal Revenue Service, wrote these excellent writing tips.”
Great storytelling tips from 1928. Makes me want to try my hand at a detective novel!
Brendan Schlagel on his wonderful “personal canon”: “an encapsulation, in list form, of those things that have most shaped you. A sort of annotated bibliography of influences.”
The Comics Journal interviews Jeff Smith of “Bone” fame.
Albert Uderzo’s obituary in The Comics Journal. One of my biggest cartooning heroes when I was a kid, still think Asterix is absolutely brilliant.
“Future You Masturbation gives you the pleasure of all your future accomplishments with none of the work. It’s your brain tricking you into something that feels good today in exchange for lost meaning and purpose and accomplishment in the future.”
“Before I had kids, I was afraid of having kids. Up to that point I felt about kids the way the young Augustine felt about living virtuously. I'd have been sad to think I'd never have children. But did I want them now? No.”
Amplifying Empowerment or Propagating Stupidity?
Daniel Benneworth-Gray on the neurotic thought processes that go into writing an “About”-page for a personal website.
Robin Sloan writes about what happens when creative ventures jump back and forth between the physical and the digital.
Mort Drucker’s obituary in The Comics Journal.
Everything wrong with “UX”.
Super interesting article about emergent ant behavior and superorganism memory. (Ants are fascinating, it’s fun comparing ant colonies to our own brains.)
“The Triumphs and Tribulations of Towboats on the Mississippi River”, Atlas Obscura, Oct. 2019.
Wild article about some insanely badass people hauling barges on the Mississippi.
Review of Ross Douthat’s “The Decadent Society: How we became the Victims of our own Success”, outlining “four aspects of decadence: stagnation (technological and economic mediocrity), sterility (declining birth rates), sclerosis (institutional failure), and repetition (cultural exhaustion).”
The Guardian writes about rural, Canadian towns and how people there feel about their “praire castles” disappearing. These castles are towering, decrepit grain elevators, but strangely beautiful and important to the towns’ identities.
“The World Is Studded With Artificial Mountains”, Atlas Obscura writes about man-made mountains, feb. 2020.
“Actor, writer, and entertainer Nick Offerman illuminates his own unlikely career trajectory and explains how true creativity—and knowing how to do things with your own two hands—can lead you to a happier, more fulfilled life.”
“Our emotions today are radically different from what 19th-century Americans felt. That’s partly due to technology.”
The headline makes it sound like another “turn off your facebooks” article, but it’s a fascinating interview with Susan J. Matt about how we’ve talked about and related to boredom over the last couple of centuries.
“‘I envy writers who suffer from no self‑doubts’: inside the world of graphic novelist Chris Ware”
NYT obituary of a master concept artist and hero of industrial design students everywhere. When we learned to render with markers, we referenced him a lot. Not only did he draw extremely well, he designed some incredibly cool-looking things.
A funny look at Mort Künstler’s 60s pulp magazine illustrations.
Inspiring article by Tom Cleveland about the effect of plugging away at creative endeavors, one small bit at a time, and how it adds up.
Very well-written essay that sums up music history and the state of modern pop music, without going all “music nowadays”.
Bizarre-looking hipsters from the 18th century.
A perfect example of UX writing on Medium. Funny ’cause it’s
Oddly interesting story about a cute glyph from the Cairo dingbats shipped with the original Apple Macintosh in 1984.
Stunning photos from the Apollo missions, and the story of how the Hasselblads were “astronaut-proofed”.
Not everyone was up in arms about the moon being “invaded” and “exploited for television”.
Worth going to see? I can well believe it.
Worth seeing? Mneh! I once rode through a desert
and was not charmed: give me a watered
lively garden, remote from blatherers
about the New, the von Brauns and their ilk, where
on August mornings I can count the morning
glories where to die has a meaning,
and no engine can shift my perspective.
Ableton has always been a front runner for interaction design in music production, but this synthesizer tutorial’s got to be some of their best work yet.