Friday links and objects of interest – 3/3/23

I’ve been thinking about how the Internet was and is lately. By was, I mean late 90s and early 2000’s, by is I mean now. There was a creative explosion in the “was” times. Twitter bots, Flash videos on Homestar Runner, even early Facebook.
I’m not glorifying this era. There’s plenty fine and well about how the Internet functions now. But, also, something’s missing. And I can’t help but think it has something to do with the centralization of everything.
The commoditization of the Internet through advertising and data collection has cramped creativity. Companies introduce products that purport to introduce value, but in reality do not. Today’s Friday post is about some of the tools I still use that come from the “was” times. It’s also about some of the newer things that I find interesting about the “is” Internet.
— RSS readers. I still use RSS to get most of my news. While others get their information from Apple News or Twitter feeds, I get mine from an app called Reeder. The nice thing about RSS is that it brings the best of the Internet to you. If you choose a good diversity of sites, you stand to expose yourself to a pluralism of ideas.
— Speaking of Twitter bots, one of the people who was king of Twitter bots was Darius Kazemi. This week I shared a talk of his called “How I Won the Lottery” with some friends. This is a great take on startup culture and creatives who claim to have the recipe to success.

— I got a tour of Stern Pinball’s HQ last Friday from George Gomez, their Chief Creative Officer. While there, he showed us a sneak peak of the new Foo Fighters machine. It’s amazing! They recently shared a video of it on social media, that I want to share with you here.
— Arduino released a new micrcontroller that can run two sketches at the same time. Pretty cool!
— In the world of AI: Here’s a new tool that scrapes websites for you. No code required.
— More AI: Hemingway helps you write more readable texts.
— I’m almost done with AI: helps you build beautiful presentations.
— Buffer wrote a pretty thoughtful piece on finding creative process. Having judged several student “innovation” competitions lately, it’s become evident this is important. Students are having a hard time finding their creative spark.
— Carlo Rovelli did an interview on his newest book. Rovelli is an amazing physicist, philosopher, and communicator. It’s a great listen.
— We’re moving out of our house of 15 years! Where to? That’s a story for another time. In the meantime, I found this post about figuring out where to live helpful.
Keep the Internet weird, and Happy Friday!