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ancient history

Tuesday,  01/10/23  03:45 PM

When I started blogging again last December I had a backlog of "interesting stuff" to relay.  Some of it was interesting at the time, but the interestingness was timeframe specific.  Other things are interesting exactly because they provide a point-in-time snapshot.  And some things are just interesting!

June 2020: Facebook and PayPal invest in Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant Gojek.  Biggest country you never think about: Indonesia.  Fourth biggest by population.  An island nation where everyone has a cellphone and most everyone has Internet access.  Gojek are way more than a ride-hailing service, they're on the path to be an "everything app" like WeChat.  This makes sense. 

July 2020: Meet BukuWarung, the bookkeeping app built for Indonesia’s 60 million "micro-merchants".  BukuWarung, meet Gojek.  Imagine signing up 600,000 merchants in one year! 

July 2020: Visual Capitalist: The global inequality gap.  As always from them, great data, and great to see visually.  

BTW Indonesia's 280M people are near the top of the third world in most categories.  Ahead of China (#1) and India (#2) in many of them.

One of those point-in-time things, Sept 2020: VDH: The news as we once knew it is dead.  "Why? ... Picture yourself in your 50s in a job where you've spent 30 years working your way to the top, to the cockpit of power … only to discover that you're presiding over a dying industry. The Internet and alternative media are stealing your readers, your advertisers and your top young talent.

Nov 2020: via Digg: A Visualization Of The Largest Cities By Area Around The World.  It's amazing how densely we live! 

Continuing the Indonesia theme: Jakarta packs 10M people into [only] 256 sq miles.

Dec 2020: Capturing the great conjunction.  As Jupiter and Saturn crossed paths closely, the ISS crosses between them.  Wow. 

Talk about topical, Dec 2020: Matt Ridley: Why mRNA vaccines could revolutionise medicine.  Note this article was written before all the Covid vaccines became available in Spring 2021.  I remember reading it thinking, hmmm... 

Dec 2020: jwz: [the game of] Life at 50.  A pretty interesting look back at a pretty interesting "game".  I love the Marvin Gardner remembrance, remember Scientific American's Mathematical Games column? 

timeless, Jan 2021: Matt Ridley: the folly of renewable energy.  "If you judge by the images used to illustrate reports about energy, the world now runs mainly on wind and solar power. It comes as a shock to look up the numbers. In 2019 wind and solar between them supplied just 1.5 percent of the world’s energy consumption. Hydro supplied 2.6 percent, nuclear 1.7 percent, and all the rest — 94 percent — came from burning things: coal, oil, gas, wood, and biofuels.

Jan 2021: Stephen Wolfram: from Assembly Language to a Nobel Prize.  On the calculations which come from Feynman diagrams... 

Feb 2021: Joshua Newman: how to be lucky.  "Most of us think that luck just happens (or doesn't) but everyone can learn to look for the unexpected and find serendipity."  I so believe this. 

Feb 2021: Fry's Electronics closes permanently nationwide.  A sad moment, but inevitable and long-expected.  I spent many a pleasant hour browsing their shelves... 

June 2021: Bill Gurley: Customers Love Free Stuff … But That’s Not Your Problem.  I love Bill's posts, his vision is truly above the crowd.  This was posted at a time of "hot" IPOs, not now, but these times will be back. 

---- so yay, we made it halfway from 2020 to today ---
And to wrap up:

July 2021: The Indonesian government announced that they would deliver free telemedicine services for COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms across the country.  Via Bercie Mesko, who comments: "It's only possible for them as they have startups that did the hard work.