2019 Posts

Below are links to all the 2019 digest newsletter posts.

  • 89 – The Lost Decade (31.12.19): Why the 2010s were a lost decade, propaganda, populist nationalism enabled by technology as the new fascism, why protest and love are all we have, Euphoria, the myth of progressivism, privacy and surveillance in China and the West, digital totalitarianism, Google ML trends,  Francois Chollet on AI skepticism, bag of words, Sacha Baron Cohen on social media, the drop-in replacement fallacy, engineer productivity challenges, Increment, suicide and the Forth Bridge, OLPC, Star Wars, how headphones are changing music, the Brexit election, Getting Brexit Done, Trump impeachment and populist illiberalism.
  • 88 – Futures (30.11.19): Bladerunner hauntology, the tenaciousness of capitalism, collapse and post-capitalism, Fully Automated Luxury Capitalism, the most important graphs on carbon emissions, mass cognitive dissonance on the climate catastrophe, Umair Haque’s dark vision, the splinternet, inside an Amazon FC, EV big bets, Psion, Google’s Coral platform, Donald Knuth and imposter syndrome, CrossRail delays, SLOs, Will Larson and engineering management, black holes, confessional singing, UK election lies.
  • 87 – Change (31.10.19): The sun shone over Auschwitz too, bad dreams, climate catastrophe in Australia, Tim Morton, CollapseOS, existential collapse, Bezos’s Climate Pledge, the AI corporation, on Cybernetics, theosis, Spotify and reinforcement learning, Dyson’s electric car is dead, why nobody cares about Quality, the happiest job in tech, Google’s Project Oxygen on managerial excellence, async await in JavaScript, Python recipes, sleep, the age of the idiot, Brexit as a necessary crisis, Peterloo 200 years on.
  • 86 – Collapse (31.09.19): Amazon Employees for Climate Justice, Paul Johnston on what a techie can do about climate change, the consistent understatement of existential risk, the endgame is coming and this is really happening, Francois Chollet on AI, the Chinese surveillance panopticon, TikTok, C4 architectural style, thoughts on out of hours engineering support, Python type annotations, Flutter, Kotlin, gRPC, Enigma simulation, microplastics, Nathan Barley, Richard Stallman and the FSF, why Britain is entering its Brezhnev years.
  • 85 – Reboot (31.08.19): The State we’re in, chaos and capitalism, transhumanism, the Brexit disaster, a new world order, why carbon capture geoengineering won’t save us, thermal limits, James Lovelock and the darkness visible, AWS growth is slowing, Kobalt, AVs, what is the purpose of a corporation? Cybersecurity and the board, Amazon Ring, code reviews at Microsoft, Facebook’s Zoncolon, programming language trends, Dwitter, Python asyncio, more no code buzz, Van Halen contract rider, efficiency vs humanity in the workplace, how false rape narratives fan hatred.
  • 84 – Weapons of Mass Destruction (31.07.19): Tech innovation enabling new weapons of mass destruction, disaster capitalism is not sustainable, 50 years on from the moon landings, climate disaster and extinction, carbon startups, Project Drawdown, pollution, Amazon Go, Netflix, what is a platform and why would you build one? Square Engineering Growth Framework, Boeing and the disaster of outsourcing software development, Twitter’s fail whale, microfrontends, the future of data engineering, men women and Prince Harry, inside Bandersnatch, Massive Attack and Black Sabbath reprised, an extraordinary month for Brexit, Johnson the gentleman vs the players.
  • 83 – Proof of Work (30.06.19): The importance of proof of work in a post-authentic world, Solastalgia and grieving for the environment, sannyasa, rebelling against carbon, paper clip maximisers, Amazon robotics, TensorFlow 2.0, the Trolley Problem, the age of idiocy, every company is becoming a data company, social impact, onboarding, Spotify Tribes, organisational growth, Python hiring hotspots, mass automation, Martin Fowler on the cost of quality, Chernobyl, Brexit bluffers, Tiananmen Square 30 years on, Ashley O, why many of us are basically already dead and when is the best time to let go.
  • 82 – Connections (31.05.19): Zuckerberg and Harari, Facebook and mass alienation, James Burke in the mid 80’s talking about the mass broadcast of real time opinions, CBInsights Tech Trends, diversity in tech, DeathStarBench, Amazon and Open Source, why hardware manufacturers are switching to subscription models, Google Huawei and ARM, freelancing, remote teams and Slack, Amazon Away Teams, structure and process, what a modern CTO needs to know, Stoicism, 996 culture, surveillance in China, the Climate Emergency, San Francisco on the brink.
  • 81 – Human Capital (30.04.19): Human capital, why working harder isn’t working, our house is on fire, Bostrom’s Vulnerable World Hypothesis, activity recognition with RNN and LSTM, analysing the Mueller report,  Spotify’s Discover Weekly playlist, Peter Norvig’s As We May Program, PyIodide, Joe Armstrong, why blogging may come back into fashion, AirBNB’s Amazon envy, Extinction Rebellion, Bauhaus, Notre Dame on fire.
  • 80 – The Illusion of Choice (15.04.19): The illusion of choice, why social media likes are harmful, content moderation, Peloton, agile and bias in ML systems, Python Vader for sentiment analysis, the AWS Kappa architecture, Python Golang and Rust, algoraves and live coding DJs, culture eats strategy, the importance of curiosity, the great ocean cleanup project, Rupert Murdoch, Jallianwallah Bagh, Brexit shambles.
  • 79 – Medium and the Message (30.03.19): On Medium.com, RNN speech recognition on the phone, GarageBand and the evolution of Apple into a services and content company, AWS vs. Kubernetes, Asus firmware update hack, more smart speaker skepticism, hacking ELF files with Python, Engineering management, politics and hierarchy, David Attenborough, the day the dinosaurs died, the Matrix 20 years on, death in New Zealand, how Brexit Britain is drowning in nostalgia.
  • 78 – Status as a Service (15.03.19): Status as a service, why old people don’t get it, AI music, collaborative filtering, smart speaker skepticism, Azure, the go to modern web development stack, learning web programming, Kano Code primer, on old coders, the Fermi Paradox and aliens, the precariat in LA, Amazon Flex driver.
  • 77 – The Perfect Answer (28.02.19): Alexa and the quest for the perfect answer, how 10k people work on Alexa at Amazon, Word2Vec and Wittgenstein, bag of words (BOW) models, AI unicorns, tech adoption, phubbing, Principal Engineering, code reviews, web assembly, engaged leadership, intrinsic motivation, insectocalypse, EVs, the universe as a maths object, Mark Hollis of Talk Talk.
  • 76 – On Agile Development (15.02.19): On Agile development and Agile BS, Interaction design for machine learning systems, Wardley on FaaS and serverless disruption, demystifying Python tuples, the rise of no code, Fossil, CRISPR, playing games, quitting Amazon after 5 months, quitting a startup, soft skills companies need, most popular Enterprise apps, MIT todo list, Marina Hyde on Brexit.
  • 75 – Surveillance State (20.01.19): Surveillance capitalism and communism, portfolio kanban, infrastructure as code (IaC), generalist full stack, does a CTO need to be able to code? blitzscaling, the physics of aging, psychological safety, realism vs. pessimism.
  • 74 – Hardware is Hard (12.01.19): Why it’s hard to make money with hardware, Raspberry Pi as a rare success, GANs for face generation, Flair for NLP, AWS Lambda, coding as new literacy considered wrong, what programmers should know about memory, Chinese apps and censorship factories, on hiring developers, Tsundoku