American Democracy Is in Crisis

Hillary (ja, die) in The Atlantic:

When you start seeing politics as a zero-sum game and view members of the other party as traitors, criminals, or otherwise illegitimate, then the normal give-and-take of politics turns into a blood sport.


And ultimately, healing our country will come down to each of us, as citizens and individuals, doing the work—trying to reach across divides of race, class, and politics and see through the eyes of people very different from ourselves. When we think about politics and judge our leaders, we can’t just ask, “Am I better off than I was four years ago?” We have to ask, “Are we better off? Are we as a country better, stronger, and fairer?” Democracy works only when we accept that we’re all in this together.


Overcast 5: Watch, Siri, search, and redesign!

Marco Arment over de nieuwe versie van m’n favoriete podcast-app Overcast:

It all started with the watchOS volume widget.

Ferm werk. Het wordt weer serieus wennen, maar dat doet het sowieso.

Die Siri Shortcuts zijn al zwaar de max. Deze morgen wakker geworden en gewoon “Hé Siri, speel podcasts” gezegd en zonder mij te moeten omdraaien of een scherm aan te raken hoorde ik Michael Barbaro’s intro voor The Daily. Zo geniaal.

En hoera voor de mogelijkheid om de sleep timer op het einde van de huidige podcast in te stellen. Dat ga ik ontieglijk vaak gebruiken!

The End of Neutrality


When institutions no longer enjoy credibility across the political spectrum, people look to more ideological sources for confirmation of what they want to believe.

Dé strategie van de helfies: alles wat neutraal is in vraag stellen. Rechters, Unia, commissies… En op die manier alles ideologisch invullen. Het werkt, voor hen, maar het is levensgevaarlijk voor onze samenleving.

Logged off: meet the teens who refuse to use social media

The Guardian:

One 2017 survey of British schoolchildren found that 63% would be happy if social media had never been invented. Another survey of 9,000 internet users from the research firm Ampere Analysis found that people aged 18-24 had significantly changed their attitudes towards social media in the past two years. Whereas 66% of this demographic agreed with the statement “social media is important to me” in 2016, only 57% make this claim in 2018.

De post-sociale-media-generatie komt eraan. Spannende tijden voor communicatiemensen!

How a thirst for beer brought us cereals—and not the other way around


In the past, people have often assumed that beer and other alcohols were produced as a way to use up agricultural waste. But in an article published in the Journal of Archaeological Science, researchers suggested that a taste for beer may have been “an underlying motivation” for the later cultivation of grains used to make bread, cereal, and other foods. Put simply, beer came first.

Making sense of the most confusing new iPhone lineup ever

Harry McCracken bij Fast Company:

For all their similarities, the new phones don’t line up into a digestible good/better/best matrix. The cheapest model, the $749 XR, is the midrange model in terms of size and has a nifty twist—six different color options to choose from—which is unavailable on the XS and XS Max. But if you covet a bright-red iPhone in an intermediate size, you’ll have to decide whether the stuff the XR doesn’t have is an issue. And while some of what’s missing is obvious—the XR has only one rear camera—other omissions are somewhat arcane, like the fact it can withstand being submerged for 30 minutes in only one meter of water vs. two meters for the XS and XS Max.

Ik vind ’t ook allemaal wat verwarrend. Ik kocht vorig jaar de iPhone X, die toen werd verkocht als “next year’s iPhone, now” en dat gevoel klopt nog altijd: ik ga niét upgraden. Voor het eerst in een heel aantal jaar.

Ik heb zelfs het idee dat, mocht m’n toestel het nu begeven, dat ik zou opteren voor een fluokleurige Xr in plaats van voor een higher end model. Nu, McCracken heeft natuurlijk vooral gelijk met z’n laatste zinnen:

For consumers, choosing a new iPhone may have just gotten more complicated. But as long as enough people do choose one rather than sticking with what they’ve got, or buying an Android phone, Apple will presumably be happy to let a hundred iPhones bloom—or at least several rather similar ones.

Hoe de podcasts van De Standaard 350.000 keer werden beluisterd

Interessant interview van Yorick Dupon (zonder T) bij Tandem Tech met Wouter Van Driessche, chef audio en video bij De Standaard:

Video, tekst, foto en alle dingen die we als printmedia al even doen, die concurreren om dezelfde twee schaarse middelen: uw ogen. Met podcasts kan je iets aanspreken dat op andere momenten vrij is: je oren.

Ik moet wel eerlijk bekennen dat ik nog geen enkele De Standaard-podcast luisterde. Dringend eens doen.

Can Mark Zuckerberg Fix Facebook Before It Breaks Democracy?

Een uitstekend profielstuk aan de hand van Evan Osnos in The New Yorker.

When I asked Zuckerberg about this reputation, he framed the dynamic differently. The survival of any social-media business rests on “network effects,” in which the value of the network grows only by finding new users. As a result, he said, “there’s a natural zero-sumness. If we’re going to achieve what we want to, it’s not just about building the best features. It’s about building the best community.” He added, “I care about succeeding. And, yes, sometimes you have to beat someone to something, in order to get to the next thing. But that’s not primarily the way that I think I roll.”