Six Links Worthy of Your Attention #462

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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: 

  • Speech synthesis from neural decoding of spoken sentences – Nature. “This is pretty dry. And the original article is behind a paywall. But it’s also transformative, so I’m going to tell you about it a bit, and you can dig into the article more if you want. Researchers have been able to monitor the brain, and extract what someone is saying simply by analyzing the neural activity. That’s right—I can figure out what you’ve said from how you thought about what you’ve said. Think about the implications for a shut-in patient, someone who’s comatose, or dreaming. Or even interrogation or surveillance. Early days on applying this technology, but hey, a decade ago we didn’t have a GPS-powered world map and perfection in all of our pockets.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Westeroscraft by Marina Geldard. “No spoilers. But since everyone other than myself seems to be deep in Game of Thrones, this came up. One of the speakers at Strata in the UK this week has a side gig: Part of a team that builds the cities of Westeros, in great detail, in Minecraft. No, not that much detail. Much more than you’re thinking. Inside the buildings. Bordering on compulsion. See for yourself. And yes, I asked her if I could share this with you. The Internet sometimes builds wonderful things.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Glowing arcs named ‘STEVE’ are much stranger than we thought – The Weather Network. “What’s not to like about a mysterious electro-weather pattern called STEVE?” (Hugh for Alistair).
  • Around the World, Buyer’s Remorse Sets in for Costly Clean Power – Bloomberg. “One of the ways governments have encouraged growth in clean energy is by passing laws requiring power companies to buy power from green producers at a premium (so, if electricity sells for $0.25/kwh, the power corp might be required to buy power from a solar producer for $0.50kwh, which encourages investment in solar). But, the bills are starting to get very steep as green production capacity grows, and new governments — like those in Ontario — have started to cancel those contracts. That sounds like bad news, but maybe not, because since we first stared to see these contracts in the last ~20 years, the cost of green energy has plummeted. Meaning in many places, green competes with traditional power sources on cost alone. The author suggests what’s happening is that green energy has grown up.” (Hugh for Mitch). 
  • On channeling your emotions into art – The Creative Independent. “Whether you like death metal or not, this article is about the true creative spirit. Creativity is hard. Creativity in a vacuum is much much harder. After 38 years and being a part of three seminal heavy metal bands, comes this interview. It’s just noise? Maybe. But check this out and tell me if it doesn’t inspire you to make some noise of your own.” (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Running Out of Children, a South Korea School Enrolls Illiterate Grandmothers – The New York Times. “Perhaps the most beautiful and kind piece of news that you will read this week. ‘As the birthrate plummets in South Korea, rural schools are emptying. To fill its classrooms, one school opened its doors to women who have for decades dreamed of learning to read.’ We humans can do incredible things… we just have to stop, think and help one another. Anything is possible.” (Mitch for Hugh). 

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