Temptation of the Apple: Dolphin on the M1

This is an article from nine months ago, but it’s still mind-blowing how much better the M1 chip is than anything else out there at the moment.

I can’t wait to get an M1 MacBook Pro and really stretch it.

Ten Tips for a Minimalist Wardrobe

Rule 2: Edit regularly

Cliche as it might be, clothes are a canvas upon which we project our identity and image we want to show the world. However, just like personal growth, our wardrobes aren’t stagnant and what we like and feel comfortable wearing evolves and changes – and I think there’s something beautiful about that. I love investing in timeless pieces that I wear for years but the reality is that clothes do eventually reach the end of their lifetime, we are sometimes gifted things or buy things that don’t quite work for us, or our bodies and everyday needs change.

I don’t feel that we should keep these pieces “just because”. For me when I edit out the pieces I don’t, for whatever reason, wear, I find it much easier to style and get more use out of the remaining pieces in my wardrobe. I also think that clothes that I don’t wear (if in good condition) are more likely to go to good homes if I re-purpose them earlier as opposed to years down the track.

I have been more curious about fashion in general lately (thanks to a Covid-induced binging of RuPaul’s Drag Race), so this whole article is really informative, but I felt like this rule was particularly good to hear.

To Kickstart a New Behavior, Copy and Paste

The next time you’re falling short of a goal, look to high-achieving peers for answers. If you’d like to get more sleep, a well-rested friend with a similar lifestyle may be able to help. If you’d like to commute on public transit, don’t just look up the train schedules—talk to a neighbor who’s already abandoned her car. You’re likely to go further faster if you find the person who’s already achieving what you want to achieve and copy and paste their tactics than if you simply let social forces influence you through osmosis.

This is one of those posts where I think to myself, “I wish I had come up with this myself many, many years ago and saved myself a ton of needless hard work.”

I’ve been getting a chance to (unintentionally) put this into practice at my new job. We hired a Ruby on Rails developer who is just incredible at what he does, and I had the chance to work alongside him a couple days this past week.

Seeing him work Vim, for example, already makes me want to start exploring it. And that’s a piece of tech that has intimidated me for two decades now.

The joys of being an absolute beginner – for life

Being a beginner can be hard at any age, but it gets harder as you get older. Children’s brains and bodies are built for doing, failing, and doing again. We applaud virtually anything they do, because they are trying.

With adults, it’s more complicated. The phrase “adult beginner” has an air of gentle pity. It reeks of obligatory retraining seminars and uncomfortable chairs. It implies the learning of something that you should have perhaps already learned.

I’ve been trying to learn soldering, kung fu, and basic home repair this year. Learning kicks ass, and we should all stop being hard on each other for trying.

Hold Close These Bar Trivia Tenets And Be Merry

As a very competitive person who does not want to alienate those around me, trivia is a perfect outlet for this energy, since, as with chess, climbing, or running, you are really only competing against yourself. This is not true in a technical sense as regards to trivia (or, for that matter, chess), but if you get every question right (or always make the right move), nobody’s going to beat you.

Much like the author of this article, I’ve more or less had trivia as a staple in my life since college. I’ve strengthened my friendships by using these questions as a way to learn more about their lives.

Now that I host trivia, it’s honestly a privilege to enable others to have these same experiences. I love having regulars who come back with the same teams week after week, eager to be beaten up with a fresh set of irritatingly complex questions.

It’s Your Friends Who Break Your Heart

Whenever I mentioned to people that I was working on a story about friendship in midlife, questions about envy invariably followed. It’s an irresistible subject, this thing that Socrates called “the ulcer of the soul.” Paul Bloom, a psychology professor at the University of Toronto, told me that many years ago, he taught a seminar at Yale about the seven deadly sins. “Envy,” he said dryly, “was the one sin students never boasted about.”

He’s right. With the exception of envy, all of the deadly sins can be pleasurable in some way. Rage can be righteous; lust can be thrilling; greed gets you all the good toys. But nothing feels good about envy, nor is there any clear way to slake it. You can work out anger with boxing gloves, sate your gluttony by feasting on a cake, boast your way through cocktail hour, or sleep your way through lunch. But envy—what are you to do with that?

Die of it, as the expression goes. No one ever says they’re dying of pride or sloth.

This is one of those articles that is hard to pull one single quote from, because it’s just so damn good.

The whole piece hits me right in the chest, and I’m sure you, dear reader, have someone you should be reaching out to after reading this too.

The Man in the MTA’s Money Room

Nearby, chunky steel boxes, each about the size of a toaster oven, are lined up on long tables. They’re the currency vaults from the MetroCard machines, and they arrive from the stations locked. “When you pull them out of the machine, they self-seal, and the only key exists here.” A couple of clerks are methodically opening them up, stacking the bills into little plastic racks and then feeding them into a bank of huge bulk counting machines. “Eighty thousand notes per hour,” Putre says. “It’s going to authenticate, then count, then sort, then strap, all in one step. What four people can do in this room used to take 12 people before we had this machine. Before the pandemic, we’d run two, three machines every single day. Now we run a couple of days a week.” It’s satisfying to encounter the mechanical whir of it all, especially this year: bills and coins, paper and metal, notes and specie instead of ones and zeroes.

This was a delightful look at the operation required to count all the money that flows through New York’s public transit system.

The FBI of the National Park Service

The elite special agents assigned to the ISB—the National Park Service’s homegrown equivalent to the FBI—are charged with investigating the most complex crimes committed on the more than 85 million acres of national parks, monuments, historical sites, and preserves administered by the National Park Service, from Alaska’s Noatak National Preserve to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park.

Three are exactly 33 brave women and men who are part of the Investigative Services Branch, tasked with protecting our national parks.

How ski lifts are installed: Vail's new Chair 5

I'm a sucker for learning how things are made, and this video certainly changed my impression of how ski lifts are installed.

Which, admittedly, made me realize that I even had an impression of of how ski lifts are installed.

Anyway, the ingenuity of this whole operation just made me smile. It made me think of Gus and Charlee working with those new Lego blocks at the Children's Museum last weekend. We humans really like building things, don't we?

The Depths She'll Reach

This is an incredible piece of storytelling.

Professionally speaking, the use of parallax and "scrolljacking" generally irritates me. In this instance, the techniques are really well implemented and meaningfully improve the story's impact.

Personally speaking, the mental health struggles Alenka overcame are inspiring. Her zen-like approach to both free diving and life in general is one worthy of adapting.

Load this one on your laptop. I promise it'll be worth it.