Monopoly: Socialism.

So this Twitter thread on the execrable Monopoly: Socialism has made me wonder what an actual, good-faith version of the game would look like. And by “good faith” I mean “relatively true to basic real-world socialist models, while still having the capacity to go horribly wrong for the players”.


2019-10-15T09:39:20+11:0027th January, 2020|Tags: economics, gaming, pop culture|

Sunk cost fallacy.

Hey you remember that time U2 gave away an album for free to people with iPhones? And everyone freaked the fuck out about it?

Wild times.

(Incidentally, I listened once to one Songs of Innocence song, by accident on random shuffle, and… I actually kinda liked it? I mean, I still immediately deleted the album from every device I own because people are weird and I’m not exception. But, y’know. That one song was pretty okay.)

2019-12-18T09:52:56+11:0026th January, 2020|Tags: apple, ios, iphone, music, pop culture|

Liesmith, chapter one.


Holy shit, you are such a dork.”

“I know.”

“You were talking to him for like an hour.”

“I was.”

“And you didn’t recognize him.”

“I did not.”

“Holy shit, man.”


“Holy motherfucking shit.”


Once upon a yesterday, there lived a boy called Sigmund.

Read more »

2020-01-26T09:02:13+11:0026th January, 2020|Tags: books, liesmith, wyrdverse|


But Uber has already plainly announced its roadmap: Self-driving cars. The much-lauded independent driver-entrepreneurs will be replaced by completely automated service providers as quickly as possible, and not only will those new self-driving cars not have drivers who need to be paid, they will all be owned by Uber itself. When this transition happens over the next decade, we’ll have entire markets of independent contractors displaced by the transition, precisely at the point when the social safety net is being dismantled. In the meantime, politicians across the political spectrum have been presenting these “gig economy” non-jobs as the future of work.

Anil Dash on fake markets.

A quick history of every intentionally engineered “mistake” that got us from eBay to Uber…

2019-10-09T15:54:07+11:0026th January, 2020|Tags: tech|

Inter-generational theft.

So technically this is an article about how Australian Millennials-and-younger are significantly less wealthy than previous generations1 but mostly it was about me looking at the article photo and thinking, “Lol no way that guy’s fort– oh gods he totally is he just doesn’t look it because I’m also ancient.”

  1. And no, it’s not the avocado lattes… []
2019-10-08T13:52:33+11:0025th January, 2020|Tags: economics|

Hustle porn.

A YC founder once said to me that he found little correlation between the success of a YC company and how hard their founders worked. That is to say, among a group of smart, ambitious entrepreneurs who were all already working pretty hard, the factors that made the biggest difference were things like timing, strategy, and relationships. Which is why Reddit cofounder-turned-venture capitalist Alexis Ohanian now warns against the “utter bullshit” of this so-called hustle porn mentality.

There’s something especially insidious about higher-ups using their own extreme work habits as a model for their staff. I’m a big believer of leading by example, but most leaders have a support system and resources that allow them to recuperate from their hard work. They live close to the office, get frequent massages, have healthy food made for them, have really good childcare, personal assistants, and much more. That’s how they stay sane and avoid burnout.

But many of their employees don’t have the same benefits. And so after working 80 or 100 hours a week for months or years at a time, they burn out. And maybe they did productive work for a time, but they pay for it with their mental and physical health.

Jason Shen on hours.

Remember, kids! Burning everyone out working for capital is the number one way of reducing the general population’s ability to participate actively in democracy!

2020-01-24T07:46:03+11:0024th January, 2020|Tags: culture, work|

Fake epoch.

If, in the final 7,000 years of their reign, dinosaurs became hyperintelligent, built a civilization, started asteroid mining, and did so for centuries before forgetting to carry the one on an orbital calculation, thereby sending that famous valedictory six-mile space rock hurtling senselessly toward the Earth themselves—it would be virtually impossible to tell. All we do know is that an asteroid did hit, and that the fossils in the millions of years afterward look very different than in the millions of years prior.

Peter Brannen on deep time.

Brannen is, of course, using this comparison to point out our own ridiculously brief period on this planet… and the difficulty we collectively have in remembering just how “brief” brief really is.

2019-10-08T13:32:09+11:0022nd January, 2020|Tags: culture, science|