Six Links Worthy of Your Attention #545

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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, Interesting Bits, 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: 

  • Charlie Munger’s “How to Start Coca Cola in 1884” Thought Experiment – Niklas Goke – Medium. “The past is obvious in hindsight. How would you build a billion-dollar global brand from first principles? Investor/sage Charlie Munger has an interesting way of backing into smart business models based on fundamentals such as market size, consumer behavior, and economies of scale. It’s a great thought experiment for anyone chasing business models.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • The Collapse of Networks – Raissa D’Souza – Santa Fe Institute – YouTube. “I’ve been reading, and writing, a lot about how we know what we know. With much of the world in an epistemic crisis, this seems like a good use of my time. Along with Robert Sapolsky and Douglas Hoffstader, there’s some not-so-flaky work by the Santa Fe institute that looks at the emergent properties of complex systems. Here’s a good talk by one of their faculty that’s particularly relevant for our connected, online lives.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Spectacular eight-mile frieze of Ice Age beasts found in Amazon rainforest – CNN. “Thousands of cave paintings found in the Amazon from 12,000 years ago.” (Hugh for Alistair).
  • Satirist to the Galaxy – The American Scholar. “I went through a major Kurt Vonnegut period, after discovering Breakfast of Champions somewhere in my childhood home when I was 15 or so, and read all his novels, mainly in my late teens and early twenties (though I’m not sure I ever read 1997’s Timequake). Vonnegut, who I haven’t read in decades, was funny, excitingly obscene (Breakfast of Champions contains some lewdish hand drawn images, one of which is a big simple asteriks/star captioned: ‘To give an idea of the maturity of my illustrations for this book, here is my picture of an asshole.’ He was also deeply humane, and that’s what has stuck with me. A trove of love letters to his first wife have emerged, shedding light on one of the bigger influences in my early literary life.” (Hugh for Mitch).  
  • Zoom and Gloom – Aeon. “Here’s one quick way to make all of your meetings (which were bad enough to begin with, but are now all taking place on Zoom): don’t look at yourself. Seriously. One of main mental health issues that we can develop over time (and not realize it) is the impact of constantly staring at ourselves. Click your window and hide yourself. You will thank me for this. But we can do more to make this very poor meeting experience much better. Design is here to help. Here’s how…” (Mitch for Alistair).
  • The death of small businesses in big cities, explained – Vox. “We’re hearing many people ask all of us to ’shop local’. A plea that was needed long before the pandemic, but may be needed now more than ever? It turns out that it may be too late (it sounds like climate change). This is a fascinating look (that was written two years ago) at the local merchant challenge, and what we will lose if we don’t change a lot more than our buying habits in a quick way. It’s a sad state of affairs, and don’t let the public markets tell you otherwise.” (Mitch for Hugh).

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

Are you interested in what’s next? How to decode the future? I publish between 2-3 times per week and then the Six Pixels of Separation Podcast comes out every Sunday. Feel free to subscribe (and tell your friends ;):