Perfect is the enemy of good

WARNING – This is a long post. Something Dad used to say came into my mind yesterday, a variation on Voltaire’s wisdom: “Don’t let perfection get in the way of your best!” He used to tell me this especially while I was stymying myself by procrastinating on this or that. His words resonate today, even…

I didn’t go to university. I learned from Linux instead. 

TOUGH CHOICES When I chose to forego college, preferring instead to join the working world confident that doors would open, there were a lot of the kinds of reactions one might expect. Most asked things like: “what are you thinking?” “why would you do such a thing?” “what are you planning to do instead?” My…

Changing without changing

Many of us make great sacrifice to avoid it. Laws are written and put into place to stymy it. Large, expensive buildings are built to protect against it. Minds are made up against it and reject ideas that even hint at it. Blockades of all sorts are built against potential outcomes that may lead to…

Perspective

The first time I saw this was sometime in May of 2011 while flying across the US inside a Boeing 737. I was commuting back and forth between the Midwest and West Coast on a weekly basis. I was uncertain about a lot of things. Specifically, in addition to my dad’s health failing and wanting…

The unseen upside to donating our bodies to science

“Donating your body to science” is a well-known but poorly understood concept, at least, according to my own experience in helping my own Mom accomplish her last wish. It is important to know there are a lot of options out there for donating but there is little, if anything, written about the process and true…

Cure for the Common Algorithm: True Curation

Curation is fundamental to how we process messages in the world. There is simply just too much information to process without filtering it for content and quality. Curating it. We curate all over the place. Social networks are among the most well-known of curation tools. That is coming under some threat, however. Twitter is now…

Race, Socio-Economics, and being cool with each other

What do I know about diversity? I thought I knew something about race, gender, socio-economics, and my own identity in relationship to something larger than myself. Turns out I knew very little. I learned more from this past year than I ever imagined I did not know and am keeping my eyes and ears open…

On being a fan

It is an understatement to say YouTube has changed things. It has replaced Encyclopedia Britannica (merely an artifact from another age of learning) as the de-facto go-to resource for everything everyone may want to know, including how to fix an engine, cook dinner using a recipe, even how to tie our shoes. It is a…

The trade-offs of trading up

This past week alone, two pals of mine, who have historically resisted change, have traded their old-school cell phones (of the Symbian variety) for next-gen SmartPhones. One, an Android, the other, an iPhone. Upon getting home and beginning to introduce themselves to a new paradigm in communication technologies, each contacted me separately to ask what…

Is Better the enemy of Good?

To some, the answer to this question is “no”. The same ones who believe better is always the goal, always, at all costs. There is a time and place for that, surely. Nonetheless, good has been under attack for far too long by the ones who perhaps misinterpreted the message. The same ones who are…

Herskovits and the Heart of Blackness

A compelling examination of the career and controversy surrounding Melville J. Herskovits, the pioneering American anthropologist of African Studies and controversial intellectual who established the first African Studies Center at an American university and authored, “The Myth of the Negro Past.”: