What I Learned This Week #2

What I Learned This Week (WILTW) is my way of documenting my learning moments – small and big.

Discovering the US with Peter Santenello

I love watching travel “documentaries” by YouTubers because they often dig into topics that are considered unreportable or uninteresting to the media. I suppose it makes sense – what’s the point on showing a regular day in life? But I find myself drawn to the antisensationalism of such videos since the news has inreasingly gotten gloomier and gloomier.

I was thrilled to discover Peter Santenello because he is a true champion of showing the beauty of the ordinary. He has a very warm personality and immediately builds rapport with people he meets during his travels. I have started watching his series about the US as it’s still one of my dreams to travel there. He goes into neighbourhood that are corroded by poverty, drugs, or violence, but also regular neighbourhoods in the Deep South and Appalachia, which are misunderstood even in the US. In his own words, “the ingredients are: a GoPro, simple editing, curiosity, a search for truth, and most importantly, authentic human interactions.”

You can view his YouTube channel here.

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power by Shoshana Zuboff

I listened to The Age of Surveillance Capitalism audiobook, which is a fascinating work that details the history of data-as-an-asset world order. It’s difficult not to emerge disillusioned with the state of modern society after this book, primarily because the author is very skilled in her polemic.

There were plenty of interesting topics that Zuboff covered but these two concepts stayed in my mind:

Contract of adhesion, which is what Shoshana describes social media terms of use. “Because adhesion contracts do not afford consumers a realistic opportunity to bargain, the consumers are often faced with adhesion contracts on a take-it-or-leave-it basis” (Source: Cornell Law School).

Wardriving – or even warbiking, warcycling, warwalking – is the act of searching for Wi-Fi, usually from a moving vehicle, using a laptop or smartphone.

War driving originated from wardialing, a method popularized by a character played by Matthew Broderick in the film WarGames, and named after that film (Source: Wikipedia).

It was revealed that an engineer that drove the Google Maps car ran “unauthorised” (according to the information in the book, the supervisors and colleagues were aware of the data collection) script to collect information from nearby open networks. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2010/may/15/google-admits-storing-private-data

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

Buy it on Amazon.de | Buy it via Hachette Book Group | Buy it on Thalia.at

Quote of the Week

“Thought leadership establishes trust and authority with your audience, by showing you have uniqueinsightinto the challenges they face.”

From FT Longitude’s Thought Leadership Masterclass

100+ Educational and Entertaining Websites

I have a confession to make. I am a hamster. I hoard. But not just everything – I hoard websites that I use for learning or killing time. Here’s a list of websites that I have hoarded because that is what I do.