Weekend Reading — The magic word

Weekend Reading — The magic word

Tech Stuff

Marker An open-source, user-friendly UI for writing & editing markdown files. Everything you create lives in your filesystem.

Ian Turton

One of my tutorial students said "Oh so big data is lots of data, I thought it was a conspiracy like Big Pharma" and I'm now completely rethinking the last 20 years of my career.

Proton Encrypted Mail Desktop App Now Available for Mac If you’re looking for a GMail alternative, Proton Mail is now available for macOS, Windows, and Linux (Beta). Of course, it always was and will continue to work in the browser, but sometimes using a standalone app is more convenient.

Eagle A better way to collect, search and organize your design files in a logical way and all in one place.

Marit van Dijk

Schrödingers documentation:
If there are docs, noone will read them.
If there are no docs, everyone will complain.

Eye for Design

The big design freak-out: A generation of design leaders grapple with their future “Did business really break up with design, or did it just break up with a generation of design leadership?“

Making Sense of the “Do Nudges Work?” Debate This article is not about nudges, but different way of thinking about and measuring effect.


Context-switching - one of the worst productivity killers in the engineering industry “Nothing gets done at the end of the day 🤯 Don't worry, we got you covered!”

The New Science of Optimism and Longevity Don’t worry, be happy:

Rozanski’s meta-analysis showed that individuals with higher levels of optimism experience a 35 percent lower risk of cardiovascular events compared to those with lower optimism, as well as a lower mortality rate. Rozanski pointed out that the most optimistic people tend to take better care of themselves, especially by eating healthily, exercising, and not smoking.

Max Leibman The most accurate self-help advice:

If at first you don't succeed, don't sweat it, your parents are rich.

Wait. Your parents aren't rich?

Oh, man. This is embarrassing. Sorry, all of these success aphorisms are meant for people with privilege and resources.

You're on your own. Good luck.

The Snow Melts At The Periphery How senior leaders can stay connected to the outside world.

Business Side

Rethinking the startup MVP: Building a competitive product

Today, the MVP is no longer about validating a novel idea as quickly as possible. Rather, its aim is to create a compelling product that draws in the early users in order to gather feedback that you then use to sharpen the product into the best version of many.

Laid-off techies face 'sense of impending doom' with job cuts at highest since dot-com crash It's brutal out there!

With tech layoffs at their highest since the 2001 dot-com crash, the job hunt is getting harder and many in the industry are being forced to settle for pay cuts if they can find a new gig at all.

Since the start of the year, more than 50,000 positions have been slashed at over 200 tech companies, according to tracking website

Don't count on a mobile app making you rich; $50/month is typical

If you’ve got big dreams about earning a living from creating iPhone apps, a new report makes for some sobering reading. The median monthly revenue generated by an app after a year on the App Store is less than $50 per month.

Who Sends Traffic on the Web and How Much? New Research from Datos & SparkToro

In the era of zero-click platforms, native content, and walled gardens, does anyone still send meaningful traffic to the open web? Is Google responsible for 50% of all traffic referrals? 75%? Is social media sending half what search does? A quarter? Less? Are the major platforms sending less traffic overall than they did a year ago?

Machine Intelligence

At least you quickly know to not bother reading the rest

I, too, would like to know “How come this meaningless wording survived proofreading by the coauthors, editors, referees, copy editors, and typesetters?”

Amazon, Google Quietly Tamp Down Generative AI Expectations The reality is a bit different from the marketing brochures:

In the past year, major technology firms have championed generative artificial intelligence as the next big thing, boosting the stock market to new highs. But behind the scenes, representatives of major cloud providers and other firms that sell the technology are tempering expectations with their salespeople, saying the hype about the technology has gotten ahead of what it can actually do for customers at a reasonable price.

Just so we’re clear, I’ve successfully used AI several times this week and was very happy with the results. But I used AI for tasks I know it’s better at.

Signs that’ll point you right towards laughter

Large language models can do jaw-dropping things. But nobody knows exactly why. The complexity of trying to understand how AI works:

The biggest models are now so complex that researchers are studying them as if they were strange natural phenomena, carrying out experiments and trying to explain the results. Many of those observations fly in the face of classical statistics, which had provided our best set of explanations for how predictive models behave.

Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr “It's like they aren't even trying to pretend this wasn't written by a pharmaceutical company AI.”


Mike Sheward

Vendor support person: “you’ll see a slider in your account that enables us to access your data for the purposes of troubleshooting, please enable that and you can disable it when we are done.”

Me: “ok, done.”

Support: “great thank you, I am now able to look at your data so give me one second. I am looking now.”

Me: “Cool. By the way I actually didn’t do the slider because I guessed it probably didn’t do anything.”

Your Driving Data May Be Sold To Insurers, General Motors Admits Fun times! “Today's smart cars collect a wealth of data. Many drivers don't realize that their detailed driving habits are being sold to third parties and can raise insurance rates.”

CEO of Data Privacy Company Founded Dozens of People-Search Firms

The data privacy company bills itself as a Virginia-based service for helping people remove their personal information from almost 200 people-search websites. However, an investigation into the history of finds this company is operating out of Belarus and Cyprus, and that its founder has launched dozens of people-search services over the years.

Everything Else

Cake day!

Max Leibman

Inside you there are two wolves.

Wolf Basic is free for individuals and includes ad-supported access to all of the classic features of the Wolf platform. Or, for $19.99 per month, upgrade to Wolf Plus and unlock an ad-free experience, Priority Howls, and all of our pro features.

Dgar Coincidence? I think not!

Missing The Point “New villain origin story just dropped.”

sluttymayo I’m just saying:

the speed with which public domain steamboat willie died off as a meme speaks to the public's franchise fatigue and desire for more original stories in the genre of mouse boating

United Airlines Boeing plane loses external panel in flight Another bad week for Boeing and United Airlines. Oh wait, there was another flight: SFO-MEX United flight makes emergency landing at LAX due to hydraulic failure. And this flight, which was not United Arlines, but still a Boeing airplane: At Least 50 Injured After 'Technical Problem' on LATAM Flight to Auckland. Not done yet, there’s more: FAA Audit of Boeing's 737 Max Production Found Dozens of Issues. And it's only getting worse: Boeing whistleblower found dead in a parking lot - International Monitor.

Missing The Point

If you are patient enough, you can build your very own Boeing airplane out of parts that fall from the sky.

LGBTQ+ Identification in U.S. Now at 7.6% That maybe doesn’t sound like a lot, but you’ve got to look at the numbers from each generations:

Overall, each younger generation is about twice as likely as the generation that preceded it to identify as LGBTQ+. More than one in five Gen Z adults, ranging in age from 18 to 26 in 2023, identify as LGBTQ+, as do nearly one in 10 millennials (aged 27 to 42). The percentage drops to less than 5% of Generation X, 2% of baby boomers and 1% of the Silent Generation.

Flowers for Algernon (1965) This is a short story (22 pages). It’s an old one, published in 1965. I read it first time I think in the late 70’s and ever since it’s still one of the best sci-fi short stories I ever read.

Gentleman Gef “My hero”

🔥 Looking for more? Subscribe to Weekend Reading.

Or grab the RSS feed