Michelangelo’s private papers

https://www.brainpickings.org/2011/06/16/michelangelo-a-life-on-paper/

What makes Michelangelo: A Life on Paper all the more intriguing is that, by extending an invitation into Michelangelo’s private world of words written for his eyes alone, it raises the question of whom we create for — ourselves, as tender beings with a fundamental need for self-expression, or an audience, as social creatures with a fundamental desire to be liked, understood and acclaimed.

~ Maria Popova

I have reached the point of no-return on books. The first, undeniable demonstration of my mortality is the stack of “to read” books. Every year I read more than in the previous year. And every year the stack of books gets taller. I am saddened when I find books such as this, and know that I will never get around to reading them.

Next up: SIM card slamming

https://krebsonsecurity.com/2018/05/t-mobile-employee-made-unauthorized-sim-swap-to-steal-instagram-account/

In this case, however, the perpetrator didn’t try to port Rosenzweig’s phone number: Instead, the attacker called multiple T-Mobile retail stores within an hour’s drive of Rosenzweig’s home address until he succeeded in convincing a store employee to conduct what’s known as a SIM swap.

~ Brian Krebs

Free swapping of SIMs is a feature making it easy to change phones [which might require different SIM card sizes] and to recover from entirely losing your device.

Age-old axiom: If you can imagine a situation where you would prefer to not use the feature, then someone can imagine a way to abuse that feature as a security vulnerability.

…and just a few days ago I was talking about not using your cell phone as a “second form of authentication.” :/

The last person to leave

I want to be the person that is the first person there and the last person to leave. That’s who I want to be, because I think the road to success is through commitment, and through the strength to drive through that commitment when it gets hard. And it is going to get hard and you’re going to want to quit sometimes, but it’ll be colored by who you are, and more who you want to be.

~ Will Smith

Spontaneity

https://www.brainpickings.org/2018/05/07/erich-fromm-escape-from-freedom-spontaneity/

Those of us accustomed to making life livable by superimposing over its inherent chaos various control mechanisms — habit, routine, structure, discipline — are always haunted by the disquieting awareness that something essential is lost in the clutch of control, some effervescent liveliness and loveliness elemental to what makes life not merely livable but worth living.

~ Maria Popova

I spend significant time swerving between the two extremes of schedule-and-organize “all the things,” and running around like a dog fascinated by everything. New item #1 on my list of 42 things (all numbered “1”)…

Social media and a true village

http://randsinrepose.com/archives/welcome-back-to-the-village/

The Internet made it easy to gather together vast swaths of humanity and allowed them to communicate with each other at scale. These mostly anonymous ginormous nations of humans have no shared purpose and no shared values. With no common understanding of how to treat each other and no incentives to do so, communication in these “communities” rapidly degrades to the lowest common denominator where uninformed hate is a typical knee-jerk reaction to differences.

~ Rands / Michael Lopp

There’s a bunch of insight about social networks (digital and in real life.) Also worth reading if you are interested in leadership and haven’t yet found the Rands Leadership Slack team.

Election hacking

https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2018/05/the_us_is_unpre.html

Security is never something we actually want. Security is something we need in order to avoid what we don’t want. It’s also more abstract, concerned with hypothetical future possibilities. Of course it’s lower on the priorities list than fundraising and press coverage. They’re more tangible, and they’re more immediate.

~ Bruce Schneier

I think the only thing “protecting” us from someone successfully hacking an election, is the sheer number of polling places. You’ve voted, right? Sure, it’s a busy spot with maybe a dozen machines and hundreds of poeple… but there are thousands and thousands of polling places, and the voting machines are not networked. Yet.

Don’t misunderstand: This is security through obscrurity, is not actually security at all, and is a recipe for disaster.

Social conditioning

https://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2006/03/what-lies-beyond-the-haze-of-social-conditioning/

If we support a foreign war or oppose it, it’s because of what effect it’s having on us, either individually or collectively. Our soldiers are dying. Our President is making us look bad. Our corporations are manipulating us. Our national debt is out of control. My taxes might go up. My budget might be stretched. My family member might be killed. We aren’t encouraged to consider such situations from the viewpoint of planet earth as a whole, or how our actions today might affect future generations. We perceive each other as separate and distinct individuals as opposed to cells in the same body.

~ Steve Pavlina

This isn’t about “us” versus “them. It’s about “I”. How do I see my world? How do I see myself? Have I been conditioned? (duh. Of course I have.) Now that I’ve discovered I have a brain, do I like how I’ve been conditioned?

…oh sorry, got to talking to myself there.

Growing up is hard

https://www.artofmanliness.com/2014/10/27/growing-up/

When people say they don’t want to embrace adulthood, what they really mean is that they don’t want to be a grownup themselves, but they want to live in a world where everyone else is. They want competent, effective politicians to represent them; they want their journalists and doctors to be smart and level-headed with a comforting mantle of gravitas; they want their children’s teachers to be dedicated and on-the-ball; they want customer service to be friendly and efficient; they want police officers to be honest and fair. They want the world to be stable, predictable…so they can afford to be erratic and irresponsible. They want to be kids, but live in an adult world, where grownups are at the ready to take care of their every need.

~ Brett McKay

This was an enjoyable read that brought up a lot of good points. The basic question being explored is why is growing up harder “these days”? Brett spends a lot of time talking about what is different “these days” in society, in culture, in the human experience. It was a breath of fresh air from the more common “kids these days…” sort of screed.

Sort out what is important

https://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2006/03/conscious-procrastination/

Every day I have a choice between working on pointless little tasks or big meaningful projects. On days that I choose the former, I end each day feeling I’ve accomplished very little, even though I’ve put in a lot of hours at my desk. I’ve kept up, but all I did was spin my wheels for another day. But when I chose to do the important stuff first, I feel great, knowing that I’m on my way to producing major results.

~ Steve Pavlina

More than 25 years ago, Steven Covey included a simple graph in a book. This task right here– is it important, and is it urgent?

Anything that’s not important, well, good– You just stopped doing that. Gaming, television, most of what you do on the internet, etc. If you’re still doing UN-important stuff… I don’t know what to say.

Now the important stuff is where the hard thinking begins. How important? Does it pay off now, or later? Does is pay off for me, my family (but not me), my family (including me), my tribe, the world . . . well, sorting out all the important stuff is IMPORTANT but not URGENT and so it gets skipped and pushed off. I’m happy to be the bearer of great news: You now know the most important thing to do: Sort out what is important to you.