Friday, June 23, 2017

The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge

“To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child. For what is the worth of human life, unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history?”  ― Marcus Tullius Cicero

AVNER ZARMI on things that rise to the top: The Perils of the Tribal Echo Chamber 

This Is How Great-Power Wars Get Started ... First they mocked Franz Jozef ...  Foreign Policy

I find it irrational to become attached to one theory. I prefer to let different ideas compete like horses in a race and watch which one wins.

Uber Can’t Be Fixed — It’s Time for Regulators to Shut It Down HBR. “Uber’s business model is predicated on lawbreaking.”

Do as We Say not as We Do ... Shakespeare is in his element on a large canvass - This decision will certainly give frontline public sector workers the impression that there’s one set of rules for them and quite another for those at the top,’’ Ms Flood said.
170,000 federal public servants have not had a general pay rise since the Coalition was elected in 2013 and have been locked in a battle over renewal of enterprise agreements Wages for the Cream of our Society

"We have a hunger of the mind which asks for knowledge of all around us, and the more we gain, the more is our desire,” trailblazing astronomer Maria Mitchell observed in contemplating science, religion, and our conquest of truth at the end of the nineteenth century. “If we ever reach the point where we think we thoroughly understand who we are and where we came from, we will have failed,” Carl Sagan wrote a century later in his exquisite meditation on science and spirituality

Don’t Cry for Travis Kalanick Vanity Fair. “At the end of the day, Uber is the culture Kalanick created.” No. At the end of the day, Uber is a company that’s never going to make any money

Reminiscent of the poet Mark Strand’s 89 meditations on the clouds, Weinberger’s text is a sort of florilegium composed of lyrical descriptions of the stars drawing on various myths, folk tales, or anthropological sources from different eras and cultures

Next to BC We know that we are trivial readers - What does it mean for a journalist today to be a Serious Reader? Columbia Journalism Review

Silicon Valley to Liberal Arts Majors: We Want You Boston Review


"Everybody should be worried about Amazon," serial entrepreneur and author Gary Vaynerchuk told Cheddar at the big Cannes, France meeting gathering. "The Bible should be worried about Amazon."
Pundits talk their Ossoff

 “If you know where Charles Ruggles lives, Ray Bradbury, Michael McClure, or Edward Dorn, you may count yourself learned indeed.”
“Reporting, by and large, is being interested in everyone you meet. It’s surprising how often the most casual meetings turn up fascinating material. This goes for Egypt or a fight club in London. If you don’t consider anybody as being beneath consideration, it’s rewarding and it’s fun.” 

`Books on Concrete Subjects, and Old Books'  

A Great Way to Learn About Product Design: Visit the Museum of Failures Core 77 

Closest Thing to a Wonder Drug? Try Walking as Exercise ... "In 2015, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges put out a report calling exercise a “miracle cure.” This isn’t a conclusion based simply on some cohort or case-control studies. There are many, many randomized controlled trials." (The New York Times - the city of life)

... Euthanasia and assisted suicide

INK BOTTLE“Taking the chance of making a complete fool of himself—and, sometimes, doing so—is the first demand that is made upon any real critic: he must stick his neck out just as the artist does, if he is to be of any real use to art.”
Randall Jarrell, “The Age of Criticism”

There are few people in the developed world who still cling to the maxim that "home life ceases to be free and beautiful as soon as it is founded on borrowing and debt". These days we can't afford to take the same view as Helmer, the husband in Ibsen's A Doll's House, one of literature's most cautious budgeters. It's a nice idea to be debt free and just spend what you earn. But when a home costs many times the average annual income and life's running costs often exceed the monthly income, borrowing is not something that can be avoided.

Pain without gain: the truth about austerity | Phillip Inman |

In 1965 a young New Yorker writer’s story ideas were rejected, one after another by the editor. Finally he said, “Oranges.” “That’s very good,” replied William Shawn Apples 

The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge Harpers (1939)

Wall Street Journal fires foreign affairs correspondent for ties to gunrunner

  • Jack of all trades, master of none
  • Jack of all trades, master of one
  • Jack of all trades, master of some
  • Judge not, that ye be not judged
  • Keep your chin up[20]
    • Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
    • Keep your powder dryValentine Blacker, 1834 from Oliver's Advice[21]
    • Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love. Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher (604 BC – 531 BC)[17]
    • Knowledge is power, guard it well.