Six Links Worthy of Your Attention #446

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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 (Solve for Interesting, Tilt the Windmill, HBS, chair of Strata, Startupfest, FWD50, and Scaletechconf; author of Lean Analytics and some other books), Hugh McGuire (Rebus Foundation, PressBooks, LibriVox) 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: 

  • Oblique Strategies – Brian Eno. “Over the holidays, Julien Smith—who we all know—listed a number of life tips that have served him well. One of them was to find an Oblique Strategies card deck. This took me down a bit of a rabbit hole (and I have yet to find a deck). It has a fascinating history: A set of cards that helps you think in unusual or counter-intuitive ways. Now I need to borrow his.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • The secret to being witty, revealed – Quartz. “I’ve had a terrifying number of people tell me I should try standup. When I speak in public, I generally get laughs — a spoonful of self-deprecating sugar often helps the rather bleak technological prognostication go down. So lately, I’ve taken to writing down my rants, then reading them later. The Good One podcast has been an amazing teacher, and I’ve found some brilliant new comics to learn from. But it turns out there’s hard research, too.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • A second mysterious repeating fast radio burst has been detected in space – CNN. “Repeating radio signals from outer-space signal, maybe, some kind of intelligence out there. Or maybe something else, we’re not sure. It’s coming from 1.5 billion light years away, so wherever it comes from, unfortunately, it happened sometime in the Proterozoic era, before there was complex life on earth, and well before humans were a twinkle in the universe’s eye. Still: an exciting mystery.” (Hugh for Alistair). 
  • Dangerous minds: the writers hounded by the FBI – New Statesman America. “There was a time when writing novels could be politically dangerous, with the apparatus of the state keeping fat files on writers too radical for their taste. I guess there are a good number of bloggers, Tweeters, podcasters, YouTubers left and right these days with their own secret files somewhere in Langley. Still, there is something very nostalgic and heartwarming about anyone bothering too much about novelists.” (Hugh for Mitch).
  • The Life-Draining Tedium of Errands Is Even Worse In This Age of Digital Convenience – Quartz. “This pushes the whole ‘has technology made us more efficient’ into a different world. The argument – if you believe it – is that we’re a mess. We can hardly handle even the most mundane of tasks, and digital technology is only making it worse. It causes us to stress out and burnout. What does your to-do list look like? Is it stressing you out? Something to think about…” (Mitch for Alistair). 
  • Does It Pay to Be a Writer? – The New York Times. “The numbers speak for themselves. Being a writer is a tough slog… unless you’re in the one percent. You may be surprised by the numbers in this article. I was not. When parents approach me to mentor their kids who are interested in becoming professional writers, my usual response is: ‘understand, that they are choosing a very hard life… long hours of work, lots of rejection and a financially challenging situation.’ We get lured in by the stardom of the bestselling authors, and often forget the wake of forgotten words, lost dreams and financial destitution that this profession provides. With that, I wouldn’t want it any other way ;”) (Mitch for Hugh). 

Feel free to share these links and add your picks on TwitterFacebook, in the comments below or wherever you play.