Kickoff For March 4, 2019

Welcome to this week's edition of the Monday Kickoff, a collection of what I've found interesting, informative, and insightful on the web over the last seven days.

Another month bites the dust, which means another month has started. It's funny how that cycle plays out, isn't it. With a new month comes (I hope) new opportunities. If they present themselves, grab them and don't let go.

And to start the new month, The Monday Kickoff has a slightly new look. I hope you like it.

Let's get this Monday started with these links:

Technology and Society

404 Page Not Found, wherein Kate Wagner contrasts the web of the 1990s with that of today, and how the web of those pioneering times was, and could still be, an antidote to today's corporate-dominated web.

The nature of the self in the digital age, wherein Aral Balkan examines the relationship between us, technology, our data, and the firms that harvest the data, and comes to some chilling conclusions.

Childhood's End, wherein George Dyson ponders how digital computers have come to dominate the analog computers that are our brains.

Business

Four Days Trapped at Sea With Crypto's Nouveau Riche, wherein we get to accompany Laurie Penny on a creepy but oddly fascinating cruise with the evangelists and hucksters trying to create, sell, and profit from a future in which the centerpiece is cryptocurrency.

Until The Next Crash, wherein we get an analysis of the 2008 financial crisis, an analysis which looks at the event from the angle of macrofinance and which presents a surprise or two.

Inside Wisconsin’s Disastrous $4.5 Billion Deal With Foxconn, wherein we learn a few more deatails about the debacle that's the Taiwanese tech giant's highly-touted complex in Wisconsin, and see how yet another corporation is benefitting from government largesse without giving a whole lot back.

Arts and Literature

The 'Future Book' Is Here, but It's Not What We Expected, wherein Craig Mod explains that there is no one vision or example of the ultimate digital book, and how the so-called future book could truly be multimedia.

Dawn of Dianetics: L. Ron Hubbard, John W. Campbell, and the Origins of Scientology, wherein we get a glimpse into the early days of Dianetics, and how some of the leading lights of the science fiction community at the time helped L. Ron Hubbard give birth to it and, later, Scientology.

Is Listening to a Book the Same Thing as Reading It?, wherein we discover that the answer to that question is not as cut-and-dry as it seems, and that listening to and reading a book have their benefits and drawbacks.

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

Scott Nesbitt