He is a pioneer of the Web and an early originator of the daily blog entry.

His confessional style and keen willingness to examine his thoughts and reveal his feelings provided a vivid and often tortured window into the ruminative and self-reflective possibilities of the Web.

Sullivan’s existential tendencies and self-acknowledged guilt (english, catholic and gay) gave him much to consider and explore. A few years ago, exhausted, he retired from the daily grind of blogging to refresh and reset.

Last week New York Magazine published his long and fascinating account of his conflicted assessment of how technology and the Internet have changed his behaviors and rewired his identity and fundamental being.

http://nymag.com/selectall/2016/09/andrew-sullivan-technology-almost-killed-me.html

This will not break the Internet but it’s a clever idea and carries noble purpose.

A Kickstarter project filled a London subway station with photos of cats

View story at Medium.com

Every generation is different until they turn out to be similar. Like families, they are happy and unhappy in their own way, rebelling against what comes before and what is now, until their brief time on earth gathers seniority and becomes their own, and they embrace it in their own special way.

https://newrepublic.com/article/136415/myth-millennial-cultural-rebel

The hierarchy of who sat where at the Four Seasons Restaurant was a barometer of power and social position in New York for nearly 45 years.

The modernist dining room and bar enveloped in an array of shifting curtains, fine and decorative arts and furnishings, and windows reflecting changing light, provided a handsome backdrop for the intersection of Manhattan society and business, revealing public and private dynamics and drama, representing a seminal landmark of the second half of the American Century.

Its New American Cuisine of 1959 was initially innovative and increasingly uneven over time. But always it was an elegant place in which to be seen and to see others. Being there was as important as the quality of the food, and it served as a place and stage to practice the art of public power, social status and upscale living.

http://www.eater.com/2016/9/1/12721246/the-four-seasons-restaurant-new-york-final-days

Across town and around the globe there is an increasingly familiar look and feel to the public spaces we encounter and inhabit.

In many places and in many ways there is a universal uniformity in which design, ambiance and behavioral queues combine to deliver a clean and familiar public and consumer experience. In this shared world modernist design transcends regional and tribal differences.

The benefits of this design ethos are aesthetic and habitual, as consistent and familiar waypoints ground us and center our activities as we navigate the tasks and opportunities of our days and nights. The productivity advantages of this universal platform are obvious and provide a global currency of familiarity and comfort.

Its limitations, however, may be less dramatic but they certainly exist. Missing or lost in this familiar consistency is individual difference, idiosyncratic variations, and local personality. Today’s coffeehouse is smoke-free and strikingly antiseptic – our lattes identical from Manhattan to Madras.

http://www.theverge.com/2016/8/3/12325104/airbnb-aesthetic-global-minimalism-startup-gentrification

The future seems to increasingly intrude on us as summer ebbs and fall gathers on the horizon.

In its September issue Scientific American asks scientists and academics several questions about what they think will occur in the future. Inevitably, their answers are predicated on a long perspective but interestingly their educated predictions share a hopefulness about what’s to come.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/20-big-questions-about-the-future-of-humanity/

One always learns something when William Gibson gives an interview.

Not simply specific thoughts and artistic observations, but how he sees today’s and tomorrow’s world and our human condition.

http://www.businessinsider.com/william-gibson-the-peripheral-interview-business-insider-2016-8

In a political season that rages against a backdrop of transformational social, economic and technological change, there’s a palpable sense of anxiety and decline that is affecting the body politic.

Hostility towards elites, anger about social inequality and racial oppression, growing nativism, and economic displacement caused by globalization and technological innovation, are driving public discourse and propelling politics in unprecedented directions.

A couple of recent accounts of social disenfranchisement offer some rationale for where we find ourselves today as a people and society. Understanding where we’ve come from and where we find ourselves now, so that we may better anticipate and influence where we’re going, seems critically important in challenging times.

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/09/the-original-underclass/492731/

https://www.fastcompany.com/3062321/election-2016/why-are-there-so-many-white-young-american-men-without-college-degrees

https://next.ft.com/content/7a67d4d2-57c3-11e6-9f70-badea1b336d4

The science of cool, a moving target, socially defined and by definition constantly changing.

The neuroscience of “cool”

From Quartz: we continue to buy a lot of stuff but don’t want to pay full price for it.

And despite having so much our sense of anxiety and uncertainty, and a vague sense of dissatisfaction, is not assuaged.

Nobody in the US wants to pay full price for clothes anymore

Are we consuming too much?