Kickoff For April 23, 2018

Welcome back!

Recently, a few someones asked me if I read everything that I link to in these kickoff. Yes, I do. I do a lot of reading during the week — at lunch, while commuting, while waiting around, and all that — and try share the best of what I read with you. I might not agree with everything I read, but it all does provoke more than a few thoughts.

Let’s get this Monday started with these links:


A Walk to Kobe, wherein author Haruki Murakami recounts the sights and changes he say on a two-day trek on foot from the suburb of Nishinomiya to downtown Kobe, Japan.

Pens and Needles: Reviving Book-Embroidery in Victorian England, wherein we learn about the once-fashionable art of embroidering book covers and how the bibliomania, patriotism, and issues around gender were central to its 19th century revival.

Children of ‘The Cloud’ and Major Tom: Growing Up in the ’80s Under the German Sky, wherein we get a glimpse of what it was like to grow up in Germany towards the end of the Cold War.

Science and Technology

The Left-Handed Kid, wherein the book The Chinese Typewriter: A History gets reviewed, and with it we learn the fraught history of creating a typewriter for a non-Latin language.

Does your DNA really change in space?, wherein we get a glimpse of the science around living in Earth’s orbit (and beyond), and what really happens to our bodies when we’re in the space — right down to a genetic level.

Three Types of Passphrases, wherein we learn about the differences between passphrases and passwords, why passphrases are important, and the three main types of them. A good primer for anyone interested in privacy.


On Simple Productivity Systems and Complex Plans, wherein Cal Newport discusses the need to balance simplifying productivity systems and simplifying your plans.

The Best Ways to Beat Procrastination, wherein you learn two ways to help you break through the barriers that are holding you back and move from doing nothing to reaching done.

Manoush Zomorodi says it’s time to get bored, wherein the host of the popular Note to Self podcast explains how to step away from our screens and enjoy the pleasures of boredom to refresh our minds.

And that’s it for this Monday. Come back in seven days for another set of links to start off your week.

Scott Nesbitt