Wednesday Morning Schadenfreude

Milo Yiannopoulos Says He’s Broke:

Silicon Valley appears to have blown up Milo Yiannopoulos’s business model.

The disgraced right-wing troll is complaining that the major social media companies have effectively cut off his alt-right audience — and crushed his ability to make a decent living.

The former Breitbart tech writer shared the complaints on Telegram, a messaging app where some alt-right allies have set up shop after getting the boot by larger tech platforms. Yiannopoulos was banned from Twitter in 2016 for directing racist abuse at the comedian Leslie Jones, losing nearly 400,000 followers. He was banned from Facebook in May.

Yiannopoulos has discovered there can be repercussions to your actions. It’s good to see someone inciting violence and racism de-platformed, but it’s not enforced nearly enoughon Twitter and Facebook.

We’re not and have never been powerless victims to our devices.

Over at The Verge, Michael Zelenko writes about the Light Phone 2 and the high hopes of the low-tech phone:

The survey, sent out to Light backers, was focused on a straightforward question: What features would you like to see on the Light Phone 2? What they were really asking, though, was thornier: How minimalist should a minimalist phone be?

In a 2017 Wired story about the futility of minimalist devices, David Pierce identified it as the “this one thing” problem. Every customer has just “one thing” they absolutely need to have their minimalist phone do in order for it to replace their current device. But everyone’s “one thing” is different. In my 2018 review of the Light Phone 1, my “one thing” was texting. If only it texted, I said, the Light Phone would be an ideal minimalist device for me.

Some Light Phone 2 survey respondents indicated that their “one things” were basic tools like directions, maps, or a notes app. But others had maximalist requests: emojis, podcasts, encrypted messaging, additional micro SD slots, even WhatsApp and a Facebook app. The Light team had to tread a fine line.

The idea of the Light Phone is great. I love ideas, but ideas are the ‘caterpillars’ to the device ‘butterflies’ they can become and how an idea manifests itself in the real world might not work as perfectly as it did inside your brain.

In my own life I’ve tackled pocket computer addictions, distractions, and temptations from the other direction. For at least 5 years I’ve disabled notifications on all but a few of what I consider ‘essential’ apps on my iPhone: Mail and Messages. No other apps on my iPhone require notification badges, pop-ups or lock screen alerts. Not even my most used apps like Overcast, YouTube, Instagram, Slack, Safari, or Spotify. I also mute group text threads with my long-time, ball-busting friends from high school. I deleted the Facebook app years ago, and recently deleted the Twitter app. My iPhone is a fairly quiet device throughout the day.

This erroneous idea that we’re powerless victims to our devices is bullshit.

Coasting

I’m graphic designer which means I collect ephemera in both printed and digital forms. I love business cards, matchbooks, magazines, old dictionaries, animated GIFs, and screengrabs of beautiful sites to name just a few of the things filling my shelves and hard drive folders.

This weekend I posted photos of the drink coasters I swipe when I go out to bars.

Why? Why not.

Categories:

Graphic Design, Image

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He got in, he got rich, and he got out.

Solid piece by Chuck Mindenhall at The Athletic on Conor McGregor (paywall):

Even if McGregor is 100 percent sincere in his desire to change his ways — actually, especially if — we’re talking about a far different McGregor than the one who was bursting at the seams to make his name in fighting. At best, the man who spent years living up to his nickname, “Notorious,” will now be tasked with trying to live it down. That’s not exactly the same setup as before, when McGregor’s name was an enterprise. The context, at once so admirable and easy to root for, is now complicated. To associate with him isn’t the happy little rebellion it once was, and any vicariousness to the winner’s vibe these days feels something like enabling.

In other words, the spirit of Conor McGregor can’t be retrieved, because at first it was all going somewhere. Now it’s retreating from where it’s been. His downfall has become a burgeoning part of the story, and — sadly — that side has as much momentum as what’s left out there for him to accomplish.

The longer he’s out of the game, the more it seems like he won’t return. And why would he? He’s won UFC championship belts in two weight classes, boxed Floyd Mayweather for tens and millions of dollars, and launched his own whiskey. He figured it out. He won. It his own words that he tweeted five years ago, he got in, he got rich, and he got out.

Categories:

Sports

“…not with a bang but a stab in the back.”

Billionaire David Koch died today. Malcolm Jones wrote a piece on him over at The Daily Beast.

The last paragraph is a good one:

It is hard to muster much sympathy for a multi-billionaire, but spare a tear for David Koch, who in his last years apparently became the final victim of his own brother’s relentless desire for control. In 2018, Koch Industries announced that David Koch was retiring due to ill health. But two sources close to the family told reporter Jane Mayer that “Charles pushed David out. It was done with a wink, and a nod, and a nudge.” Another family associate confirmed this: “Charles had been pushing him out for quite some time. David kept resisting. It was bad. Charles took control.” And so ended one of the most remarkable careers in American business and American politics, not with a bang but a stab in the back.

Good riddance.

Categories:

Business

Pocket computer upgrade cycles

Americans are waiting three years to replace their phones, study finds:

A new study released by Strategy Analytics reflects the current state of the smartphone industry. Apparently, consumers in the US — Baby Boomers, in particular — are increasingly delaying their smartphone purchase for three or more years. In addition, the average iPhone now remains active for 18 months, while the average Samsung phone remains active for 16.5. The era of yearly phone upgrades is over. Smartphone shipments have been dropping around the world over the past year, and some analysts even believe the industry is bound to suffer its worst decline ever in the coming months.

I buy a new pocket computer about every 2 years. I’m currently using an iPhone X I bought in 2017. It still has solid battery life and is snappy as ever. I’m a geek and I like gadgets and I might get a new iPhone this fall, but I could easily wait until next year to upgrade.

We operate on the appearance of reality, not reality.

Gwyneth Paltrow Hired a Personal Book Curator—Here’s What He Chose For Her Shelves:

After everyone tired of reading on their Kindles, there was a delightful, if unexpected, realization. Book lovers remembered that books aren’t just for reading, they can also be beautiful objects in and of themselves.

Thatcher Wine, a long-time bibliophile and collector, tapped into this concept in 2001, sourcing rare, out-of-print books to build beautiful libraries based on interest, author, and even color for his clients. Since then, Wine has curated the bookshelves of Gwyneth Paltrow and New York’s NoMad hotel; fans include Laura Dern and Shonda Rhimes.

I’m such an idiot. For over 25 years, I’ve been reading books myself and putting them on my shelves. I could have hired a personal book curator. Such wasted time.

I can’t say I’m surprised Paltrow does this shit. Remember, her company Goop is the one that touted the ‘benefits’ of putting a jade egg in your vagina.

Categories:

Books

Mikey Likes It #9 – Does Barry Manilow know that you raid his wardrobe?

Yesterday installment #9 of my email shadow box series Mikey Likes It dropped. Have a look.

The theme of this shadow box is the ’80s. Not the most original theme, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be good. The obvious show to feature would have been Stranger Things, but I think Halt and Catch Fire was a better series.

If you haven’t subscribed, you can do it here.

Mister Miyagi

Categories:

Shadow Box