Excursions by Amit Gawande

Entries tagged “opinion”

May 22, 2020   I have decided to actively be back on Twitter again. In a way, I never was off Twitter; I have been a passive contributor on Twitter for more than a
May 21, 2020   Book Review: The Mystery of the Blue Train   The Mystery of the Blue Train is a typical Poirot mystery, just not presented in her signature intriguing style. There are just too many shifts to
March 20, 2020   I was completely surprised and equally frustrated, to read the only NYTimes reporting of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to the
March 12, 2020   Is there anyone who can easily find the one emoji that they do not use very often? How many of the 1500+ emojis can one possibly use? There is a
October 6, 2019   I'm glad that Android exists   On a recent busy Friday morning, I hopped into my cab on my way to the office. I was about to isolate myself by plugging my ears with an audiobook.
September 25, 2019   I am not a gamer. I cannot play a single-person shooter. I was ok with this particular style of gaming when it was on desktop, with a keyboard and a
September 18, 2019   I wonder what the purists think of the recent computational photography trend. Google started it with its all-in-cloud touch up of the photos. And
September 4, 2019   Effectiveness of Customer Service Representatives   I have met two types of customer service representatives. There is a section that is trained to listen to what the customer has to be say and serve
August 24, 2019   Here Come the Space Tugs, Ready to Tidy Up Earth's Orbits   SpaceX is teaming up with the maker of a space tugboat, which would nudge satellites around, clean up space junk, and do other orbital
August 16, 2019   Terry Pratchett's artistry with words   It is the passages like these from Terry Pratchett that leave completely in awe of his imagination. He can dream up craziest of the crazy, stupid
August 15, 2019   The Promise of “instant”   Patience is a virtue that is rapidly getting extinct within us. Everything digital has trained us to expect everything instant. You want to read,
August 11, 2019   Being Digital Literate towards Privacy   My sister recently bought a new iPhone - her first, switching over from Android - and was happily setting it up with all the apps she had been
July 21, 2019   Book Review: Seriously... I'm Kidding   I picked up this book just as a filler — something I read in between when am in no mental state of anything serious. Or something that will make me
July 19, 2019   Apple also wants to serve exclusive podcasts now. This recent craze of everyone coming up with their own exclusive content - movies, shows and
June 28, 2019   With Ive gone, will we see Apple embracing more colors in their designs - especially hardware? Choice of monochrome, aluminum look for all products
April 24, 2019   Are podcasts wasting our time?   Chris Richards, putting his perspective through, does kick a hornet’s nest. Something even I have done earlier. I’m against podcasts. I think
April 22, 2019   Publishing to the open web   I read this note from Dave Winer on state of publishing on the open web. The first part reads like a fact. It’s too hard to publish something to
April 22, 2019   Missed a great innings from MSD yesterday — boy, the man can do anything. He has his own style of working a game of cricket. Sure, it fails to click
April 11, 2019   IPL matches are running too late into the night — I just can’t stay up late on the weekday. I’m sure am not alone and the broadcaster must be seeing
March 25, 2019   Discussing Social Networks, Again   Another week, another discussion on the state of social networks on TWiT network. This time it took place on the latest episode of This week in
March 24, 2019   Selecting and Reading Books   I keep mentioning every time I get a chance that I am too picky while selecting the books I read. So it was fascinating to read few suggestions from
February 8, 2019   In an article on how Instagram “travel influencers” are affecting homeownership around the world is hidden a very unfortunate truth. Today
February 3, 2019   Why CAPTCHAs have gotten so difficult   So apparently we, humans, are struggling to prove ourselves as human now - The Verge reports. Figuring out how to fix those blurry image quizzes
February 1, 2019   I attempted to watch Black Mirror: Bandersnatch today. Netflix managed to solve a lot many technical challenges — it is a well-done interactive
January 31, 2019   Bhai: Vyakti Ki Valli - Celebration of a life   I recently watched “Bhai: Vyakti Ki Valli”, a movie I was very eagerly waiting for quite some time now. It is a biopic of a person that I adore, an
January 22, 2019   I love email, more than ever   Martin Weigert talks pretty openly about his love for emails. Over the years, one frequent type of blog post published by tech heavyweights laments
January 5, 2019   Social Networks won't fade away   Irrespective of what the popular belief is, the need for social networks is not going away — more so amongst those who are not technology oriented.
December 27, 2018   Displaying Webmentions with Posts   I have been using Blot, a simple blogging platform with no interface, for quite some time now for running my blog. I am not alone when I say this,
December 21, 2018   The Rise and Demise of RSS   This is such fascinating write up by Sinclair Target on history behind the challenges RSS has faced over the years. And also why it just never
November 1, 2018   How a Month without Computers Changed Me   This is such a fascinating read — so detailed on how Andrey Sitnik planned for and went through this arduous experiment. Then I asked myself if
November 1, 2018   It is so difficult to explore anything that Google announces without passing it thought the lens shaded by their ad business model. It doesn’t
October 30, 2018   Twitter should kill Retweets first   Retweets prey on users’ worst instincts. They delude Twitter users into thinking that they’re contributing to thoughtful discourse by endlessly
October 27, 2018   How China Rips Off the iPhones and Reinvents Android   But what is true today is that not all Chinese phone software is bad. And when it is bad from a Western perspective, it’s often bad for very
October 26, 2018   Things I wish Apple will launch   This is not a post where I be a tech pundit, read tea leaves scattered all over the internet and predict what Apple is going to launch on the
October 24, 2018   iPhone XR Screens aren’t terrible   It’s time for Apple product launches. And so is the time for all the talks of -gates and sheeples and reality distortion. There’s so much noise this
October 15, 2018   On Podcasts, News and Well-being   I have lately felt hindered by the time I am listening to the same repetitive thoughts from other people on podcasts. Experts talking about,
October 9, 2018   Being Social on Web   It’s been some time now that I have started again to regularly write, post my thoughts. Long and short. One of the key reason for this change in my
September 30, 2018   Sorry, Chrome is Not a Google Service   I read this interesting perspective from Bálint where he argues that “Chrome is a Google Service that happens to include a Browser Engine”. I
September 3, 2018   Simplicity of Love   There is a fascinating conversation on episode 97 of the Criminal podcast with the now 99 year old Benjamin Ferencz. He primarily talks about his
August 31, 2018   I believe “all data is anonymised” has to be the biggest lie all these data hoarding and advertising companies tell its customers. With the amount
August 30, 2018   Logged off: meet the teens who refuse to use social media   This is such a fascinating read — I don’t think it is a stretch to think there would be teens who would be overwhelmed by the burden of being social
August 30, 2018   Twitter is testing a feature where it suggests who to unfollow   I read this. And then I read this again. I checked the source to make sure it isn’t from The Onion. It wasn’t. We know that people want a relevant
August 23, 2018   Your Users Aren't Always Right   There is a lot of chatter recently around the features on Twitter/Facebook that should be incorporated in the new1 social media platforms. Or even
August 20, 2018   Mark Zuckerberg and other big boys don’t have my sympathy   Cathy O’Neil, along with criticizing these “big boys of tech”, feels some sympathy for them. I might be the only person on Earth feeling sorry for
August 14, 2018   Twitter Has Desensitised Us   I have recently observed a lot of anger from people across the world towards social networks of all forms. Especially Twitter. I had also expressed
August 10, 2018   Search Engines need to redesign their results   Dave Winer wrote few of his thoughts on how the search engines need to improve with time. He was focused a bit on how it can make blogging valuable.
August 10, 2018   Why not just quit Twitter?   I am reading a lot of views these days from people I respect deciding to leave Twitter. And this is after a similar exodus from Facebook pretty
August 8, 2018   Bad news: there's no solution to false information online   This is a must read article from Ben Werdmüller where he concisely conveys the problem around fake news1 and also presents how different players in
August 7, 2018   Freeing the Web from the Browser   The Web is, without a doubt, the most powerful research tool currently available to man. No longer must researchers comb through endless indices and
August 2, 2018   Techmeme introduced a new form of ads today. This is how the homepage looked. And this how they introduced the prominent change visible out there.
July 17, 2018   Are humans really blind to the gorilla on the basketball court?   A wonderful essay on what’s “obvious” to human and how the fallacy that “obviousness is driven by human bias”, which in itself is error prone, can
July 15, 2018   User Discovery with Micro.threads   I had recently started working on updating Micro.threads application to focus on discovery, specifically user discovery. My social interactions on
July 13, 2018   State of Microsub Servers and Client   I had recently expressed an excited opinion on Microsub, the “new” Indieweb spec. I could then see the potential of the standard and also the
July 8, 2018   Creativity and Parenthood   Austin Kleon wrote a nice article advising creators, especially writers, to not fall prey to a belief frequently floated around - “you lose a book
June 28, 2018   Book Review: Murder in the Mystery Suite   A mystery of murders during a “Murder and Mayhem week”, amid “some role-playing and fantasy crime solving”. Now that’s one juicy premise. Alas, a
April 8, 2018   Thoughts on The Rule of Links   Every post I write oftentimes has a link to an external post, either as a reference or as a recommendation. And every single time, I go through this
March 4, 2018   Open Web and Your Social Signature   I had recently expressed my hope for more people to own their identities online. There is nothing wrong with attempting to control what you post
March 3, 2018   Communities to Combat Isolation   This is such a feel-good post to cheer one up on how a town in Somerset realised the ill effects of loneliness, isolation had and combated the
February 22, 2018   Google, AMP and Consumer Welfare   Ben Thompson of Stratechery has published a (another) great post on understanding AMP and the reasons behind its lure for publishers and success
February 18, 2018   Read. Patiently, slowly, uselessly.   I recently read a great essay by Michael Harris where he dwells into his present-day struggles to read patiently, the old way. With focus.
February 13, 2018   We Should All Write. Everyone Can.   I have always believed that anyone can write. Life throws at us many opportunities to express ourselves in words — something short or long, in
February 10, 2018   IndieWebify Your Hugo Website   For many, that’s too much of jargon right there in the title. So to bit of basics first. I would not go into the history or setup of this website.
February 8, 2018   Living in a Smart Home   This is a really fascinating, and an extremely detailed account from Kashmir hill journaling her experiment of wiring her house to spy on her. Why?
January 30, 2018   Stop Making Software Complex   We, as an industry, need to find ways to simplify the process of building software, without ignoring the legitimate complexities of businesses. We
January 23, 2018   How Dark Patterns are employed by health insurers   Dark patterns, dark algorithms, dark user experiences, what is that? You might ask. I will define them as the following for this piece: Dark
January 19, 2018   Book Review: Origin by Dan Brown   A mystery thriller — what do I expect from a book that categorises itself as that? A deep, dark mystery to start with. Woven into a tight,
January 16, 2018   The Opposite of Fitt’s Law   If we should make UI elements we want users to click on large, and ideally place them at corners or edges for maximum clickability — what should we
January 16, 2018   Fallout of the False Ballistic Missile Alarm in Hawaii   The time in between sparked a brief panic in a state where fears of an attack by North Korea have heightened in recent months. Residents and
January 11, 2018   Four Color Theorem and Software Complexity   Looking at these graphs feels a lot like looking at a graph of dependencies in a codebase. If you add a node for each class, and draw and edge
September 14, 2017   Steve Jobs Theatre - A Unique Apple Product   The Apple Event of September 2017 was in many ways just another iPhone launch day. It was marked by the typical, yearly frenzy in the media and the
September 8, 2017   Publishing Platforms Still Fail Writers on Mobile   I like to write. Emphasis is important because that is exactly what I like to do. I do not want to make the writing process too complicated. I just
August 26, 2017   Static Website: Benefits & Writing Process   I have recently converted my blog to a website and, as I have already documented, I serve it as a static website. I have preferred this approach
August 19, 2017   Life of Bitcoin Miners   In the bitcoin economy, time really is money. Every 10 minutes or so, mining machines compete with each other to solve a math problem to win 12.5
August 15, 2017   Things are Changin'   It is August. I like to think I am a writer. Somewhere deep down, I also know, though, that I am first a developer. So every August, I happen to
August 11, 2017   Displaying Favicons in Safari tabs   I don’t know what the argument is against showing favicons in Safari’s tabs, but I can only presume that it’s because some contingent within Apple
May 9, 2017   We're all a mess   Such a refreshing edit this published as part of Sunday Review at The New York Times. The contrast between people’s real lives and ones as perceived
April 28, 2017   The humans behind the AI   There is a great edit on Ars Technica about “The secret lives of Google raters”. I found the section on how there always are some people, humans,
November 29, 2016   Book Review: A Man Called Ove   “Very few books make me root for the central character. Ove has me hooked.. am with him for a fun ride!” That was my update a third into the book.
March 29, 2016   Pinboard & IFTTT   Maciej Cegłowski rants on how IFTTT pulled the plug and dropped the support for Pinboard. Imagine if your sewer pipe started demanding that you
February 7, 2016   Why Gender Equality is important for men too   Emma Watson gave an impassioned and effective speech at the U.N. headquarters in New York. The address was as part of the launch of “HeForShe”
January 2, 2016   Book Review: The Oath of the Vayuputras   Such a letdown by the finale. Last third of the book completely ruined the build-up — which itself wasn’t too great. But this could have been so
August 2, 2015   Book Review: Mort   A great fun read with extremely witty subplots is how I remember this book. But then I think about it a bit and it is not how I felt throughout. It
April 11, 2015   Thoughts on The Martian   This novel has left me with a lot of thoughts. First off, I am totally confused on what I really feel about this. It is one of the most difficult
January 24, 2015   Kindle and Paperbacks   I read a paperback recently; an incident that made me realise how wrong I had been to believe one will always feel nostalgic towards books with real
December 17, 2014   Book Review: Gone Girl   I started reading this book wanting, assuming, it to be a suspenseful thriller. I was unaware it is more of a sociopathic, twisted whine-fest. Some
November 30, 2014   Experience watching Interstellar   So, I finally watched Interstellar yesterday; after days of, literally, closing ears and eyes on every mention and reference of this word. It is
November 19, 2014   Book Review: And Then There Were None   Agatha Christie, a name I saw at every bookstore and avoided every single time. The books ‘looked’ short, felt they had to be short stories for
October 30, 2014   Book Review: The Cuckoo''s Calling   The novel is an entertaining read overall. Expected given that it is penned by an experienced story weaver. But then it also has those parts that
July 28, 2014   Pen is, still, mightier   Recently I read an article by Nick Bilton that announced, or at least inclined to, the demise of the pen. “Fare Thee Well, My Pen”, the headline