07 5 / 2013
07 5 / 2013
"Which is something that Morozov doesn’t touch on in his review: that TED-think isn’t merely vapid, it’s downright dangerous in the way that it devalues intellectual rigor at the expense of tricksy emotional and narrative devices. TED is a hugely successful franchise; its stars, like Jonah Lehrer, are going to continue to percolate into the world of journalism. And when they get there, they’ll be deeply versed in the dark arts of manipulating facts in order to create something perfectly self-contained and compelling. Does any editor out there want to take it upon herself to try to unteach such arts, when bringing on a hot new star? I didn’t think so."
28 4 / 2013
"The law makes a simple but powerful point: Why would you go to the trouble of obtaining genuine legal tender when, at a lower cost, you can get something that works just as well? Joseph Schumpeter may have explained the law best in his History of Economic Analysis, pointing out that “if coins containing metal of different value enjoy equal legal-tender power, then the ‘cheapest’ ones will be used for payment, the better ones will tend to disappear from circulation."
22 4 / 2013
"The triad of “Good, Fast, Cheap” is missing a fourth element: “Done”. Good, Fast, Cheap, Done: Pick any three. A lean prototype is a version of a product that is good, fast, and cheap; it’s just not done."
21 4 / 2013
"The hedonic treadmill, also known as hedonic adaptation, is the supposed tendency of humans to quickly return to a relatively stable level of happiness despite major positive or negative events or life changes."
20 4 / 2013
"To Foucault, this is real power: the plague moment is one in which the political apparatus achieves its fullest expression. It does so through ever-expanding knowledge, and the purpose of that knowledge – which is itself not held in secret, since plague deaths are announced on a daily basis – is the further elaboration of the means of control. There is no orgy of violence or social breakdown: the plague town model also introduces the essential concept that this is all performed on the populace for its own good. All of Foucault’s subsequent models of power rely on this kind of efficiency. As technologies of surveillance and discipline become more pervasive and efficient – as norms of behavior become more established – the population does most of the work itself. Power finds itself ever more easily creating the conditions of its own further reinvestment. Hence these technologies become ever more subtle."