What we read this week (9 Mar)

This week we read about the flaws in pattern-based investment, the many, many companies tracking us on the web, and how to fight busy with busy.

Quotes of the week

In a connected world, the seams are the story.

Kyle Cameron Studstill

People love people who can make things. Making’s the new thinking.

Russell Davies

Articles of the week

  • Chris Dixon: The problem with investing based on pattern recognition
    Chris Dixon points out the logical fallacy in investing in patterns that have been successful in the past. Though the article focuses on startups, the basic idea really applies in a broader sense: pattern recognition is just one of several steps in the scientific method.
  • Undercurrent: Self-Interest And Collaborative Systems
    “… people must then learn to use new technologies in less self-interested (and more responsible) ways,” writes Johanna Beyenbach, and we couldn’t agree more. A nice post by our output-heavy friends from Undercurrent on collaborative systems, with nice real-life examples.
  • The Atlantic: How Google — and 104 Other Companies — Are Tracking Me on the Web
    Alexis Madrigal used Mozilla’s Collusion tool for 36 hours to find out which companies were tracking his browsing. The result: 105 different companies gathered data on him. From this surprising discovery, he dives deep into ethical questions of who is allowed to do what and for what price. A must-read about the current online advertising market and the implications for our privacy.
  • Maree Conway: Understanding Foresight
    Maree Conway gives a great introduction into the practice of foresight and provides a helpful framework for how to approach it.
  • Rands in Repose: A Precious Hour
    Rands, aka engineering manager and author Michael Lopp, developed his own way of coping with the mind-boggling, somehow seductive “busy” of work and everyday life. In this article, he discusses the benefits of breaking “the flow of enticing small things to do” and blocking off one hour a day, every day, to “build something.”

Author: Maddie

Maddie is a strategist and researcher. She spends much of her time on the think tank side of Third Wave, and enjoys getting into the details of many different topics at once. Through this foraging for information, she finds ways to apply knowledge from one field in new, seemingly disparate ones, both in client work and other research. She holds an interdisciplinary BA in Computer Science, Linguistics and German, and has previously worked at VCCP and at the Science Gallery in Dublin.