List of texts / podcast that caught my attention this year (2022).

JAN 2022

Ernst Jünger: our prophet of anarchy

  • Ernst Jünger: our prophet of anarchy - UnHerd
  • Jünger despised Celine because of the lack of the skin in the game

    A fêted intellectual, and a lifelong francophile, he befriended the city’s cultural elite, socialising with Cocteau and Picasso as well as the collaborationist French leadership and literary figures such as the anti-semitic novelist Céline, a monster who “spoke of his consternation, his astonishment, at the fact that we soldiers were not shooting, hanging, and exterminating the Jews — astonishment that anyone who had a bayonet was not making unrestrained use of it”. For Jünger, Céline represented the very worst type of radical intellectual: “People with such natures could be recognised earlier, in eras when faith could still be tested. Nowadays they hide under the cloak of ideas.

Steve Yegge, practicing programming

  • steve yegge - practicing-programming
  • an interesting comparison from brought from the (classical) music, but also reminiscent of the importance of code katas but also of the (absence of) historical consciousness. Imagine a crazy old excentric engineer doing something along the lines of Riccardo Muti (he is referring to events > half a century ago and considers them essential)

Riccardo Muti initially insulted and shouted at his successor Riccardo Chailly, who had given up his own private room to the distinguished guest. After the concert, he called for a microphone to address the audience and was ignored by stage staff. He proceeded to shout half-comprehensible and generally irrelevant comments about Toscanini’s return to La Scala in 1946.

Ben Thomson, The Relentless Jeff Bezos

Bill Gates Gets the Internet

On the value of in-house expertise

  • Luu, Dan. The value of in-house expertise
  • An argument for build in the build VS buy debate, claiming that in large-scale orgs there are highly specialized teams that are not directly related to a “core business”, that actually function as profit centers (Twitter’s kernel team). Always fun when Dan brings interdisciplinary examples, making his footnotes worth to pay attention to.

What America’s largest technology firms are investing in

  • What America’s largest technology firms are investing in - The Economist

    When the twin foundations of the computer age, the transistor and Claude Shannon’s theory of information, came out of Bell Labs in the mid-20th century, it was not because the labs’ owner, at&t, was facing lots of scrappy competitors. It was because it wanted to make and own the future. Rob Atkinson, head of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, a think-tank, argues something similar is true today: the Big Five are “oligopolists which use their market power to win the next big thing.”

  • Combine with the foundational The End of the Beginning – Stratechery by Ben Thompson