Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #111

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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 (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, the author of Complete Web Monitoring and Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks), Hugh McGuire (The Book Oven, LibriVox, iambik, PressBooks, Media Hacks) and I decided that every week or so 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:

  • Earth Engine – Google. "Google has consistently balanced its marketing and commercial efforts with those that are good for the planet, taking a stance on things like gay rights, global warming, and science education. Now, they’ve taken their Google Earth resources and created time-lapse videos that show — painfully — how the planet is changing. Watching the Amazon rainforest vanish, or Las Vegas sprawl across the desert, or the Aral Sea dry up, is as sobering as Potter’s last thoughts." (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Dennis Potter interviewed by Melvyn Bragg – The Guardian. "To have one’s last words recorded and broadcast to the world must be a remarkable thing. This is one of the most remarkable — and sobering — interviews I’ve seen in recent times. The Guardian published the transcript; here’s how interviewer Melvyn Bragg remembered it. It’s part of The Guardian’s series on memorable interviews. ‘The only thing you know for sure is the present tense, and that nowness becomes so vivid that, almost in a perverse sort of way, I’m almost serene… the nowness of everything is absolutely wondrous, and if people could see that, you know.’" (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Touché: Touch and Gesture Sensing for the Real World. – Disney Research. "We probably aren’t all that far away from dispensing altogether with our ‘smartphones,’ leaving us with just the ‘smart.’ Or, for how much longer will we have to poke at some silly device in order to listen to music, phone a friend, or write an email?" (Hugh for Alistair).
  • What if every Olympic sport was photographed like beach volleyball? – Metro. "It’s Olympics time, and you might have noticed that some sports are not portrayed in quite the same way as other sports. In particular, women’s beach volleyball has some rather … odd characteristics. For instance, competitors are required to wear skimpy bikini bottoms. And, photographers have noticed. This article poses an important question: what would happen if we applied the same photojournalistic practices to other sports that we apply to women’s beach volleyball?" (Hugh for Mitch).
  • The Basic Question – The New York Times. "In short: I am afraid… very, very afraid to read this book. I grapple with my own existence and meaning. I am constantly searching for any clues as to why, exactly, I was put on this earth and what I am supposed to do with my time. It’s not philosophical or religious, just something that has always been on my mind. I was like this when I was a little child, and not a day passes me by when I don’t ask these types of existential questions (for better or for worse). This book review looks at Jim Holt’s latest titled, Why Does The World Exist? Suck on that question for a second or two. If you were mandated to write a book like this, where would you begin? And, if you could uncover the answer… are you sure that you really want to know the truth?" (Mitch for Alistair).
  • A Conversation With Gore Vidal – The Atlantic. "I’d like to claim that I am all high-brow and that I have always been admirer of the work that Gore Vidal put out. I would be lying. The truth is that I recognize the name, but have never read a single piece of work that he wrote. That doesn’t mean it feels any better to hear that such a literary luminary passed away. We need more voices that provoke new thinking, not less. Reading through this interview, it’s clear that Mr. Vidal was both outspoken and an icon. It’s pieces of journalism like this that make you want to deep dive into an author that you never looked at before. Some people get depressed when they realize how many classic writers they will never get a chance to read in their lifetime. I relish the thought that I can read something cutting edge one day and them lapse back into some classic words that are brand new to me." (Mitch for Hugh).

Now it’s your turn: in the comment section below pick one thing that you saw this week that inspired you and share it.