Webtacular World Issue # 245, August 12, 2018

Greetings Webtaculators. I personally had a good week, but it’s always important to put it in context of what is happening in around our country and our world. I think it is very important to tamper the feelings of good fortune and happiness a little, lest we forget that everything is not OK. It is far too easy to say “everything is fine” in your situation while the world literally burns around you. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: One Year Later
Why: Because little has changed. White supremacy is and will continue to be a loud voice as long as our leaders continue to find it politically useful to support them. I said it last time, and I will say it again – fuck Nazis, and fuck Nazi enablers.

In other news regarding our leadership, apparently its just fine and dandy if un-elected people with no specific skill, knowledge, experience, or oversight shape our national policies. This is what actual corruption is, and I still can’t believe 40% of the public is still OK with this.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: The Swamp Keeps Floating Up
Why: Because the Secretary of Commerce is being sued for stealing money from his business partners. If Ross is not the epitome of what the Trump appointee for being in charge of “promot[ing] job creation and economic growth by ensuring fair and reciprocal trade, providing the data necessary to support commerce and constitutional democracy, and fostering innovation by setting standards and conducting foundational research and development” in the U.S. would be, I do not know who is.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: How To Regulate Uber
Why: Because, weirdly enough, it turns out transportation services can be regulated like transportation services.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: “Leaping” Into A Home Maybe Near You
Why: Because the Magic Leap is supposed to bring augmented reality into our lives. It seems to not quite hit the mark, but still be impressive nonetheless.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Co-Ed
Why: Because I know women who could (and did) kick my ass on Wednesday night soccer. I also know a bunch of women (and men!) who were intimidated, mostly unintentionally, by Friday softball.

Sports are one of those things that I was always innately OK to good at. I was always faster than average, have very good hand-eye coordination (aside from my eyesight being atrocious), played competitive sports through college, etc. Because of this, I always found sports and sport-adjacent activities like PE or recess wall ball very fun, in a way that I came to understand that can be attributed directly to my finding them relatively easy.

MOST people do not find these things easy. MANY people find our found these same activities to be terrifying – between a combination of lack of confidence, whether real or internalized, immediate performance analysis by your peers, body image issues, and pecking order determinations, that is a completely normal and rational conclusion to come to. I am still amazed that athletic performance and ability drives so much of our society when most of us spend all day sitting at a computer. No comments on someone’s typing speed or Excel skills in quite the same way that they are awed by a colleague’s drive off the 10th tee at a charity event, or someone’s finish time for friendly bike / run race up a mountain. I am continuing to try to be more thoughtful about these types of interactions. I suggest you give it some thought as well.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Popularity Contest
Why: Because this is the category that Black Panther will win, and it sucks.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (long watch)
What: Play
Why: Because this is why Dave Grohl remains one of my favorite artists – he truly loves what he does, and spends time and money making sure that others have the opportunity to love music themselves.

Also, my favorite festival, Outside Lands, is happening this weekend, which is why you’re getting an earlier version of Webtacular than normal.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Bad Thinking
Why: Because this is the same problem I have with Jordan Peterson – it’s essentially a middle / high school level of argument that falls on its face in any sort of real world application, but because it is so simple to understand, it is very easy for people to find appealing. It is a problem that I believe a “marketplace of ideas” cannot solve – there is no metric for determining a “good” or “bad” idea. You can see the outcome now from Alex Jones’ banishment from certain platforms, but not Twitter, or Trump’s continued attack on the press. I have no solution, but it remains a growing problem.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Good Idea, Bad Execution
Why: Because We Happy Few comes close to achieving its goal, but not quite.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Zuck Review; How To De-Smoke Your House; Found Him
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Magic Leap
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

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