Links for December 26, 2021
🕹 The Great Online Game — Not Boring
Packy McCormick's essay on how the internet has become an infinite game with real-world rewards fundamentally changed how I think about the internet. It's one of my favorite essays:
The Great Online Game is an infinite video game that plays out constantly across the internet. It uses many of the mechanics of a video game, but removes the boundaries.
The Game rewards community and cooperation over individualism and competition. You get points for being curious, sharing, and helping with no expectation of reciprocation. By increasing your surface area, you’re opening yourself up to serendipity. For good actors, the Game has nearly unlimited upside, and practically no downside.
🔭 Webb Telescope Prepares to Ascend, With an Eye Toward Our Origins — NY Times
NASA successfully launched the Hubble telescope's successor yesterday, which will allow us to see infrared light from distant parts of the universe. Expectations for the telescope are high, because this light will let us see objects that are much older and farther away.
There are only a few times in the history of a species when it gains the know-how, the audacity and the tools to greatly advance the interrogation of its origins. Humanity is at such a moment, astronomers say.
🐦 Two tweets for the new year:
But if you are setting resolutions, a reminder that tiny gains compound in ways that are hard to imagine up front: