the traveller had found a way through
Bold way to start a newsletter, a thing that only exists because people subscribe… but the “subscribe” format may have ruined the internet? It made it about the "latest” for the reader and about “reach” for the writer.
What if it was posts that were discovered, outside the context of a publication? Content was allowed to be inconsistent. What if reach meant “someone new” rather than “more” ?
I dunno maybe it would end up just as bad.
The point is– an author should have a community of readers less than a community of readers should share links from a ever growing set of authors.
But these communities don’t really exist. Micro communities of people who are interested in the same type of niche.
And honestly, subscriber bases are probably the best first iteration of this model. Substack I think knows this and seems to be maybe working towards that model in a sense. But I want less platforms and more portals and forums.
I do know that the internet was supposed1 to be more playful. More experiments less hot takes. More active discovery, less passive consumption.
Here are some good examples2.
BIG ASS MESSAGE (a personal favorite of mine
Public Access Memories. Self described as “a virtual net art gallery that situates digital works within their native environment.” – but that is a horrible undersell of the site, which I can only describe via screenshot:
» Within that is an… exhibit? Essay? Room? titled “Soft Corrupter”
Worth a read based on content, but also, I’m super into their use of collapsible text. Not to delineate sections but to unfold a narrative in a non linear way.
How is this related to strategy? I don’t know but it just is.
My first stab at why would be about our obsession with the big reveal. many small reveals with a transparent ending can be just as gripping. Probably more so.
“Interfaces are the dominant cultural form of our time. So much of contemporary culture takes place through interfaces and inside UI.”
via “No to NOUI” an essay against the invisible UI trend.
“The digital theorist Rick Prelinger has proclaimed that archiving is the new folk art, something that is widely practiced and has unconsciously become integrated into a great many people's lives, potentially transforming a necessity into a work of art.”
“I’ve learned something else about note-taking apps, though, since my mania for them began in 2020.
In short: it is probably a mistake, in the end, to ask software to improve our thinking. Even if you can rescue your attention from the acid bath of the internet; even if you can gather the most interesting data and observations into the app of your choosing; even if you revisit that data from time to time — this will not be enough. It might not even be worth trying.
The reason, sadly, is that thinking takes place in your brain. And thinking is an active pursuit — one that often happens when you are spending long stretches of time staring into space, then writing a bit, and then staring into space a bit more. It’s here that the connections are made and the insights are formed. And it is a process that stubbornly resists automation.”
Something I still struggle with as I try note taking app after note taking app.
Notes aren’t for record keeping notes are for thought. Note taking apps don’t start with this premise. Even if they did, they can’t replace staring into space.
A couple more links on the false gods of note apps and “tools for thought”
As we may think, The Atlantic (digital article is paywalled, but they allowing full viewing of the print PDF from the archive)
“in the age of information overload, THE ULTIMATE LUXURY IS MEANING AND CONTEXT.”
– Louis Rossetto
(from the first issue of WIRED magazine)
Housekeeping note: many of my shared links are likely broken at the moment. I am working on fixing, but please let me know if you need access to something that is down.
I love it when two quotes from different places and times come together to say something bigger.
“Play = time spent without purpose” -Brene Brown
“play is the highest form of research” -Einstein apparently
Some of my old notes end up being sketches I come back to as art inspo more than reference for work.
I think that’s a good thing? In the bigger picture at least.
according to… me?