Grist - Week of 3/22/2020
This weekly linkdump is an outlet for me to catalog what’s making me think, and scratch the itch to share it.
This week’s Grist is a little lighter than the prior weeks. I’m starting to limit some of my information intake. Seeing so much news about COVID-19 - and so much of that news being dire - is starting to take a toll on my mental wellbeing. I’m trying to find the right balance between taking in new info that makes me think, and rejecting information that’s only going to make me worry.
Bonnie Baker has a great series on mixed signal design - ADCs, DACs, and the meeting point between analog and digital electronics. Bonnie is a Burr-Brown veteran, and a longtime Texas Instruments mixed signal applications engineer. Next on the docket after this article series is her series of Baker’s Best mixed signal eBooks on TI’s page.
Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History podcast is favorite listening while out running. This episode is the second half of a two-part series about Donald Hollowell, a black civil rights lawyer who worked in Georgia during the 1950s and 1960s. For the first part of his career, Hollowell fought a losing battle against the entrenched racism of Georgia’s legal system. He spent many years losing - and losing publicly - in order to help inspire more people to fight and overcome Jim Crow. It’s a towering example of leadership: setting an example, even in the face of hopeless odds and a ruthless, determined antagonist.
It’s a powerful reminder of what leadership looks like, for the unsettling times in which we find ourselves.
I’m trying to limit the spread of COVID-19 related media. I’ll make an exception when I think some concept in particular is really helpful, and presents a strong signal through much of the noise. Ben Thompson’s latest two posts do a great job of categorizing how we’re starting to see some of the negative effects of social media in this crisis. Enabling people to share misinformation is of particular issue; though I’m not on social media myself anymore, my fiancee is starting to see more and more posts by our friends and family that are spreading information that has either been proven untrue or was never true to begin with.
Be careful what you share. Your own willingness to help may be working against the greater good here.