Musings. Et Al. - Archive

Thoughts Archive for Amit Gawande

★ Liked “The conventional wisdom about not feeding trolls makes online abuse worse

The story of the internet has always been the same story: disaffected young men thinking their boorish and cruel behavior was justified or permissible.

And it was always wrong.

★ Liked “‘The discourse is unhinged’: how the media gets AI alarmingly wrong

“Making real progress in AI requires a public discourse that is sober and informed,” Lipton says. “Right now, the discourse is so completely unhinged it’s impossible to tell what’s important and what’s not.”

I hate reading articles on websites with monospaced fonts. It’s ok for code snippets, but please let’s not use them for long form posts. Not sure if it’s even made for that.

That One Shirt in Your Wardrobe

Every wardrobe has that one shirt that uncovers itself after many days, from beneath the pile of new, blot-less clothes and mirrors back the reality to you. The reality that you have been ignoring the most important possession of yours, your health. It just won’t fit anymore.

You reminisce when this was part of your go-to attire. When nothing else looked good on you, nothing else suited you, fitted you, this one shirt always did. And now it doesn’t. As if it never was yours.

It hasn’t changed much. You, on the other hand, have.

So now the choice is yours. You either accept the signal, get back into shape. Or ignore it, pay for the consequences later.

I think it is the same with life. And those forgotten habits, those expressions that had made you look good. That had suited you, defined you.

And that one event that makes you realise you have changed enough that they don’t suit you now.

That’s when you choose.

★ Liked “Juul & its House of Smoke & Horrors” by Om Malik

“And is it an ethical business?,” asks Crunchbase. “We can’t answer the latter question here as we’re not equipped for it.” Yes, you are!

★ Liked “How to close all Safari tabs at once on iPhone and iPad

All you have to do is long-press the tab button when looking at any Safari page […]

Just long press. Everywhere.

I listened to a couple of microcasts today and I get the lure now. It is easier to share quick thoughts via audio than a written words. And I attempted to record couple of notes in Voice Memo. Yep. I think I may make it work.

★ Liked “No, you probably don’t have a book in you

Every story is not a book.

★ Liked “Departing Facebook Security Officer’s Memo: ‘We Need To Be Willing To Pick Sides’

“We need to build a user experience that conveys honesty and respect, not one optimized to get people to click yes to giving us more access,” Stamos wrote. “We need to intentionally not collect data where possible, and to keep it only as long as we are using it to serve people.”

“We need to listen to people (including internally) when they tell us a feature is creepy or point out a negative impact we are having in the world,” the note continued. “We need to deprioritize short-term growth and revenue and to explain to Wall Street why that is ok. We need to be willing to pick sides when there are clear moral or humanitarian issues. And we need to be open, honest and transparent about our challenges and what we are doing to fix them.”

What needs to be done has always been clear. Anyway I think it is good that it is on paper (again). Wish someone worked on it too.

Podcasts Is a Costly Medium Even for Listeners

I hate podcasts, because the medium is demanding. It demands so much time from me, demands focused attention to follow along. I wish I didn’t find them so damn useful to keep giving in to the medium’s demands.

But to do so, I have to alter my regular habits to accommodate podcasts in the daily routine. Time that was consumed by music for majority part of my life is taken over by podcasts now. If I have even a minute free, earphones are plugged and I continue what I was listening to. There are times when I question whether the medium actually deserves so much of attention from me.

So every now and then I look and relook at my subscribed podcasts list to decide which podcasts earn their place. I relook at my habits to see what I can change to make this manageable.

  • If there is a podcast which I hardly listen to, it’s unsubscribed.
  • If there is one whose last episodes I hardly remember, it’s unsubscribed.
  • I rarely stay subscribed to podcasts that might talk about the same sets of topics (that means very few tech podcasts).
  • I do not want news from the podcasts, I want views, perspectives.
  • None with daily episodes. Rather I prefer podcasts that are spread across the week. So if I find that there are multiple (more than 3) podcasts delivering episodes on the same day, few are simply unsubscribed.
  • I always listen at 1.2x speed. “Trim Silence” mode is always on in PocketCasts. I do not care of the lost fidelity. I recently tried to let the silence stay on and I felt everyone was deliberately being a slow speaker.
  • There is a big reason I use PocketCasts. Overcast is a loved app amongst the tech community and I tried hard to use it. But it just doesn’t respect data usages limits. It either allows to download all episodes every time or not notify about a new episode at all. I, on the other hand, want to look at the episode, read what it’s about and then decide whether to download. PocketCasts’ a lot more flexible.
  • I like if the podcasts, especially long ones, do chapters. It’s easier to skip over the topics I just have no interests in.
  • I listen to ad reads if they aren’t robotic, if the host believes in the product. That’s least I can do to contribute for their efforts.