Recommentunde - We’ll all seek the approval of The Algorithm - Week of Aug 25 2019

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The Recommentunde Newsletter

For the week that began August 25 2019

Hello fellow human and eavesdropping machines,

This past week I made time to visit The Broad Museum in downtown Los Angeles to catch the Soul Of A Nation: Art In The Age Of Black Power 1963-1983 exhibit before it closes September 1. As I’ve been diving in to the New York Times 1619 project, I welcome this exhibit’s beautiful reminders that there are multiple ways to process painful histories and experiences. Here’s my Instagram story highlight from yesterday’s visit.

And now to help you process some of last week:

You begin with Rolling Stone writer Jamil Smith’s expressed admiration for The 1619 Project’s Patriotic Work.

You also think it's patriotic for a conservative, former Tea Party congressman who once called President Obama a Muslim and a traitor to admit he was wrong and launch a primary challenge against President Trump because he's willing to say what nearly every Republican knows to be true: that the U.S. president is unfit to lead. Introducing, in this video interview, Joe Walsh, Republican candidate for President of the United States.

As new ways to part with your money for video entertainment emerge, you reluctantly admit that Streaming Video Will Soon Look Like the Bad Old Days of TV.

Larry Wilmore has interviewed two friends of mine from college who have two comedies on air right now, Sherman’s Showcase and Southside. You eagerly listen to Diallo Riddle and Bashir Salahuddin starting around minute 14.

Intermission: You might remember I host a podcast called Spit in partnership with 23andMe. Last week we recorded another episode, this on the subject of Parkinson’s, and I got to meet and interview Leila Ali, Muhammad Ali’s youngest daughter. I also sat with three-time American Ninja Warrior Jimmy Choi who’s using exercise to help him live with the disease. Jimmy’s TEDx talk will fire you up while you wait for the finished episode to drop shortly.

If you haven’t been thinking much about artificial intelligence, don’t worry, artificial intelligence has been thinking a lot about you. Jonathan Zittrain writes a thoughtful piece in the New Yorker looking at the hidden costs of outsourcing our thinking to machine processes we don’t understand. Meanwhile Owen Williams writes in Medium about how and why our websites got so boring and standardized. Both of these articles support a theory I’ve long held which is that the age of automation will be less about automating machines to do human tasks and more about automating humans to live in a world more strictly controlled by machines. We’ll all seek the approval of The Algorithm.

And for the dismount, something classy and downright cool from the previous president and First Lady of the United States. It sometimes hurts to remember how good we had it, but it’s also inspiring and motivating to know that it’s always possible to choose a different path, so let’s all do what we can to return to that high road. Please enjoy the Obamas’ Summer Favorites on Spotify as you move through time.

Peace and Love to you.