2023-10-07 Links

Daily Reads:

Ben Evans Unbundling AI: You could ask Alexa anything, but it could only answer ten things. ChatGPT will answer anything, but can you use the answer? It depends on the question. Nearly a year on, the hysteria has died down a bit. What can it actually be used for? It’s a question with few answers beyond code, brainstorming ideas, and first drafts.

A thoughtful piece by Om Malik on Steve Jobs. What would SJ have thought of our Industry Now

I’m now learning Indifference on the guitar. I have learnt, at a much slower tempo of course, both Tico Tico & Montagne Saint Genevieve. Gypsy jazz, particularly as performed by Django Reinhardt is fascinating. Although he had fewer fingers, Django found a way to improvise using arpeggios, different time signatures and rests. His playing speed, the stretch of his finger muscles… so much amazement!


The writer Umberto Eco belongs to that small class of scholars who are encyclopedic, insightful, and nondull. He is the owner of a large personal library (containing thirty thousand books), and separates visitors into two categories: those who react with “Wow! Signore professore dottore Eco, what a library you have! How many of these books have you read?” and the others — a very small minority — who get the point that a private library is not an ego-boosting appendage but a research tool. Read books are far less valuable than unread ones. The library should contain as much of what you do not know as your financial means, mortgage rates, and the currently tight real-estate market allows you to put there. You will accumulate more knowledge and more books as you grow older, and the growing number of unread books on the shelves will look at you menacingly. Indeed, the more you know, the larger the rows of unread books. Let us call this collection of unread books an antilibrary.
– Nasseem Nicholas Taleb


Toni Lindgren covers John Prine/ Blaze Foley’s classic Clay Pigeons