Strange Days

"I am your main connection to the switchboard of the soul. I'm the magic man... Santa Claus of the subconscious."

Hi again, I’m Steve Makofsky and this is a semi-whenever list of interesting articles, podcasts and videos that I come across during the week. I hope you’ll enjoy it, find something new to think about, and share it with your friends. In case you forgot, this is in your inbox because you asked me to send it to you. You can unsubscribe by clicking the link at the bottom of this email.

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A recent thread inspired me to revisit the 1995 film Strange Days this week. It was as trippy as I remembered it - the story of an ex-cop named Lenny, played by Ralph Fiennes, who hustles tech called SQUID; which is a headset that records the wearer’s experiences for others to later 'plug in' and experience it themselves. It virtually allows you not only to see and hear the experience, but to feel it

In classic Hollywood form, he eventually uncovers a conspiracy when he obtains a shocking and violent murder; it leads him down an unescapable path that surfaces a society that is rampant with racism and political corruption; he threatens to uproot it all. The film flopped, making $8 million in the box office. 

What struck me as interesting about Strange Days, was that the feel of the world was more in tune with 2020 and the problems we face, instead of the setting of New Years Eve of 1999. Perhaps the reason it bombed was that it was almost ahead of its time; it captured a future overwhelmed with fear, privacy-violating tech, social media and people filling their own void by living their lives through Instagram-faked lives.

IMHO, Strange Days is a good rewatch.

If you're interested in my daily ramblings, follow me on Twitter or my posts on Medium.

This weeks "Deep Links"

A plain, brown rock on the outside. But when it was cracked open, a geologist found a rare formation that looks like Cookie Monster - More

The kids song 'Do You Know The Muffin Man' has a super dark history. The Muffin Man, aka the Drury Lane Dicer, was the first known serial killer in England. Between 1589 and 1598, he murdered 15 children by luring them into his bakery by pulling a muffin on a string. Once inside, he would knock them out and then kill them. The song was later invented as a warning to stay away from the bakery - More

Speaking of horrible - Watch an analysis of 'Steam Wand Scrambled Eggs' - Watch

Joe Biden wanted a moon rock, and this is the store on 'lunar sample 76015,143' which now resides in the Oval Office - More

When building software, not everything has to be innovative or next generation. 'Good strategy identifies a problem with the current situation, proposes a principled approach to overcome it, and then shows you a coherent roadmap to follow. Strategy is not in the business of razzle-dazzle, it’s in the business of getting to the core of the issues so that the solution becomes simple and obvious. Good strategy provides the clarity that enables boring plans.' - More

Imagine having a device that was designed to save your life, hooked to your heart and having it hacked. This goes into the fear of ICD's, pacemakers, and other internet connected devices that are hackable inside you - More

Many of the faces on the Apple Watch are 'reinterpretations' of real-life watches. I found this article to be a fascinating look at the iconic watch patterns that were remade to take advantage of the digital age. Here's a deep dive into 'the iconic watches that inspired Apple Watch faces' - More

I enjoyed this read on how being 'polite' can be a motivator in large groups and can influence them to please a few dissenters, in 'The Tyranny of the Minority' - More

A great reverse-engineering technical look at 'Blastdoor' and the changes made by Apple in iOS 14 to block message-based, zero-click exploits - More

Vulture recounts 'The Sweatbox', a 'no-holds-barred, occasionally funny, often heartbreaking look at how the Disney sausage is made, and sometimes unmade'. If you ever wanted to dive deep into what went on behind the scenes during the making of 'The Emperor’s New Groove' - More

End Thoughts

This is your life, right here, right now! It's real-time, you hear me, real time!

Time to get real, not playback. You understand me?

Memories are meant to fade.

They're designed that way for a reason.