I’m quite concerned that in the future someone might not know what author they’re reading. You see that with music. You would think in the information age it would be the easiest thing to know what you’re listening to. That you could look up instantly the music upon hearing it so you know what you’re listening to, but in truth it’s hard to get to those services.
I was in a cafe this morning where I heard some stuff I was interested in, and nobody could figure out. It was Spotify or one of these … so they knew what stream they were getting, but they didn’t know what music it was. Then it changed to other music, and they didn’t know what that was. And I tried to use one of the services that determines what music you’re listening to, but it was a noisy place and that didn’t work. So what’s supposed to be an open information system serves to obscure the source of the musician. It serves as a closed information system. It actually loses the information.
So in practice you don’t know who the musician is. And I think that’s what could happen with writers. And this is what we celebrate in Wikipedia is pretending that there’s some absolute truth that can be spoken that people can approximate and that the speaker doesn’t matter. And if we start to see that with books in general – and I say if – if you look at the approach that Google has taken to the Google library project, they do have the tendency to want to move things together. You see the thing decontextualized.
“I think the radio will change-– and the sooner the better. Because no matter what way you look at it, the most pleasurable experiences you ever have is when something’s played to you you don’t know. Like going round to a friend’s house and they’ll stick a tune on you. Or going into a store when I was a kid and the new Smiths record’s come out and I’m going up to the guy-– and he’s really cool, the indie store in town-– and just talking to him about music for 20 minutes.”—Thom Yorke talks to Alec Baldwin (!) about music discovery and so much more in this great interview from Baldwin’s “Here’s the Thing” radio show. (via pitchfork)
“Not everybody is comfortable with the idea that politics is a guilty addiction. But it is. They are addicts, and they are guilty and they do lie and cheat and steal — like all junkies. And when they get in a frenzy, they will sacrifice anything and anybody to feed their cruel and stupid habit, and there is no cure for it. That is addictive thinking. That is politics…”—Hunter S. Thompson in Better Than Sex: Confessions of a Political Junkie (via explore-blog)
“…Music is like the Pacific Ocean, and the best you can do is be a fisherman on one little island, figuring out your little place. Music is that big - scary big. But it becomes more amazing the older I get. I love music more than I ever have.”—Trey Anastasio in Rolling Stone
“Me and some of my friends, we were gonna save the world / We were trying to make it better / But then the weather changed and the white got stained, and it fell apart / And it breaks my heart to think about how close we came.”—Neil Young on new album
“I can imagine a system that tries to design the ultimate game for every player. Imagine if Steven Spielberg spent time talking to you, observing what you watched, and then went off to make a movie just for you. It’s a little scary when you think about it. We’re talking about something that’s potentially more addictive than any drug.”—Will Wright imagines the future of gaming
“Are they real fires? Or are people just reacting to something? Just because there’s an alarm doesn’t mean it’s a fire. And I think that people are confusing the two.”—Chris Rock on if the Internet fuels the fires of controversy
“One of the things that really hurt Apple was after I left, John Sculley got a very serious disease. And that disease—I’ve seen other people get it, too—it’s the disease of thinking that a having a great idea is really 90 percent of the work. And if you just tell people, ‘here’s this great idea,’ then of course they can go off and make it happen. The problem with that is that there’s a tremendous amount of craftsmanship between a having a great idea and having a great product.”—Steve Jobs (via david)
“Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it—don’t cheat with it. Be as faithful to it as a scientist—but don’t think anything is of any importance because it happens to you or anyone belonging to you.”—Hemingway’s letter of advice to F. Scott Fitzgerald, a fine addition to other notable advice on writing. (via explore-blog)
“I didn’t make that up and that’s a fact. It came from a small paragraph in a paper which means you kill yourself and you make a big old sacrifice and try to get your revenge. That all you’re gonna end up with is a paragraph in a newspaper. Sixty-three degrees and cloudy in a suburban neighborhood. That’s the beginning of the video and that’s the same thing is that in the end, it does nothing … nothing changes. The world goes on and you’re gone. The best revenge is to live on and prove yourself. Be stronger than those people. And then you can come back. That’s kinda what I did. Now all those people who were my enemies want to be my friends. They don’t understand why, uh, I don’t respond to them.”—Though always unique in their own horror, each school shooting always makes me think of this interview with Eddie Vedder.
“The demand for online content globally is virtually limitless. In some cases it’s just an economic opportunity for content providers. But for many nations obtaining and distributing required content will be critical to their political stability.”—Insight from Peter Francese at OPA Summit 2012
“There’s a period in your 20s when everyone’s partying and having fun. Then a few years later, it’s not so much fun. Some people adjust, and some people don’t. When I was in my early 20s, I worked in an office for a while, and I saw these people a little older than me just drifting. They were making just enough money to pay the rent and go out drinking. Before long they’re caught in something they can’t quite control; they feel trapped in their own lives.”—Craig Finn talks to Paste Magazine
“If you look at your Facebook newsfeed you’ll see stories about cute animals mixed with breaking news mixed with personal updates mixed with humor and jokes and entertainment and so you know, why not create a content site for that world instead of a world where you have to pretend that everything on one site is serious, and everything on another site is a joke?”—PC Mag interviews Jonah Peretti.
“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery—celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: ‘It’s not where you take things from—it’s where you take them to.’”—Jim Jarmusch (via redvelvetteacake)
Earlier generations have weathered recessions, of course; this stall we’re in has the look of something nastier. Social Security and Medicare are going to be diminished, at best. Hours worked are up even as hiring staggers along: Blood from a stone looks to be the normal order of things “going…
“One of the best pieces of advice I ever got, back when I was 23 and newly out of school, is this: look around and figure out who you want to be on your team. Figure out the people around you that you want to work with for the rest of your life. Figure out the people who are smart & awesome, who share your values, who get things done — and maybe most important, who you like to be with and who you want to help win. And treat them right, always. Look for ways to help, to work together, to learn. Because in 20 years you’ll all be in amazing places doing amazing things.”—John Lilly (via parislemon)
So over the last two years, we entered a wacky age when, finally, everybody got all aboard on the internet. And now, the awesome resulting trending is that brands and agencies are putting their trust in digital natives, who are by nature risk-takers — after all, being on the internet, back in the day, wasn’t exactly a good ‘career move.’ Everyone did it for love, and digital natives are people who like to make ambitious, sly, weird and hilarious stuff on the web just for kicks.
So what we’re seeing is that the age of the ‘safe’ and boring pitch is over. Smart brands know that if they want to get down with sponsoring ‘sharable’ and ‘likable’ content — what we in the biz call ‘stuff that people actually enjoy reading and watching,’ and that’s a highly technical term —that they have to get behind a spirit of adventure.
“With few exceptions, the only instances in which mainstream firms have successfully established a timely position in a disruptive technology were those in which the firms’ managers set up an autonomous organization charged with building a new and independent business.”—Clayton Christensen in the Innovator’s Dilemma, quoted in this Slate story on why the Netflix-Qwikster split may make sense. (via corybe)
“When people say dad rock, they actually just mean rock. There are a lot of things today that don’t have anything to do with rock music, so when people hear something that makes them think, ‘This is derived from some sort of continuation of the rock ethos,’ it gets labeled dad rock. And, to me, those people are misguided. I don’t find anything undignified about being a dad or being rocking, you know?”—Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy Defends ‘Dad Rock’ (via johnness)