Fresh Daily – Week of 4/20/20

Covered this week; The Coronavirus stole Earth Day 2020, let’s move it to November 3rd… The coronavirus didn’t break America, it just revealed what was already broken… Epic Games launches Fortnite on the Google Play Store, but they’re not happy about it… The Apple Watch, five years in… The story of Dennis Rodman’s tattoo t-shirts… Trump, breaking his arm patting himself on the back…

April 20, 2020

The story of Denis Hayes and his organizing of the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970. Now 50 years down the roadlthe science is crystal clear… but the work of finding solutions has still barely begun.

On a meditative night in the desert, in a state of mind heightened by his “terrible diet” and the desert chill, “It just came together in my mind that we’re animals and we didn’t abide by the principles that govern the natural world,” he said. He woke up the next morning with a purpose. “I wanted to devote my life to advancing principles of ecology as they apply to human beings and to human communities, to human processes.”

April 21, 2020

The time that shelter-in-place affords gives you time to think along many different vectors. Personally, I’ll sometimes observe within myself, refined islands of thought with unfortunately no thread connecting them. That said, running into this thought piece from George Packer provided one thread I was missing. Sadly, I palpably felt pessimism growing as I continued to read. As much as I’m sorry to say it, most all of this rings true.

When the virus came here, it found a country with serious underlying conditions, and it exploited them ruthlessly. Chronic ills—a corrupt political class, a sclerotic bureaucracy, a heartless economy, a divided and distracted public—had gone untreated for years. We had learned to live, uncomfortably, with the symptoms. It took the scale and intimacy of a pandemic to expose their severity—to shock Americans with the recognition that we are in the high-risk category.

April 22, 2020

In David & Goliath situations, you always like to see some gamesmanship employed by the underdog… that’s basically what Epic Games has been doing over the last year and a half in keeping Fortnite out of the Google Play Store only allowing the game to be downloaded from their website. That’s come to an end now, but it’s clear that Epic was pissed off about the whole deal…

“Google puts software downloadable outside of Google Play at a disadvantage, through technical and business measures such as scary, repetitive security pop-ups for downloaded and updated software, restrictive manufacturer and carrier agreements and dealings, Google public relations characterizing third party software sources as malware, and new efforts such as Google Play Protect to outright block software obtained outside the Google Play store,” an Epic Games spokesperson said in a statement. “Because of this, we’ve launched Fortnite for Android on the Google Play Store.”

April 23, 2020

My journey with the Apple Watch has only recently begun. I got my first one at the end of this past December 2019. Since the 1st of the year, I’ve ‘closed my rings’ every single day. If you don’t know what that means, you’re missing out as this watch has served the purpose of motivation for me. Such a valuable commodity. One way or another… on the eve of the 5th Anniversary of the Apple Watch, I was very happy to run into this exhaustive piece by Stephen Pulvirent for Hodinkee. A great read.

Our story starts on September 10, 2014. This was the day that Apple first officially announced the Apple Watch to the world. Apple did so at a special event in Cupertino, in the very same theater where Steve Jobs had announced the original Macintosh 30 years earlier in 1984 and the original iMac in 1998. Though Apple did not officially say that the Apple Watch was on the docket for this event when invites went out, the address definitely indicated that something special was in store.

April 24, 2020

What a sad state of affairs we live in where the status quo is favored because it gives power to the (political) minority. Parties are less concerned with building something than they are with what the other Party might build while in power. In a viral essay, Marc Andreessen makes a simple statement in light of so many shortages here early on in this pandemic, ‘It’s time to build’… but then he lies out the details of what he calls a Federal Vetocracy that explains, at least in part, why America has lost its stomach for the big risks.

At the federal level, I’d get rid of the filibuster, simplify the committee system, democratize elections, and make sure majorities could implement their agendas once elected. As I’ve argued for years, we should prefer the problems of a system where elected majorities can fulfill the promises that got them elected to one where elected majorities cannot deliver on the promises that the American people voted for. The latter system, which is the one Americans live in now, drives frustration and dysfunction.

April 25, 2020

The moral of the story is that ‘unlicensed’ is never the way to go. As an offshoot of the ‘Last Dance’ Jordan retrospective going on on ESPN right now, this is the story of how Dennis Rodman blew up the t-shirts that featured his tattoos all in correct geographic positioning. Just one of those Saturday fun links I suppose… plus it lets me use a colorful Rodman shot for the post banner graphic in a week where no other subject stepped to the forefront.

No major athlete of the era was more closely associated with ink than Dennis Rodman. As the NBA’s enfant terrible became a sensation on the Bulls during the 1995-96 season — his hair color changing as often as his mood — Fanatix’s Rodman tattoo shirt exploded in popularity, helped along by NBC showing off the shirt during a nationally televised game. Rodman, a former member of the arch-rival Detroit Pistons, told me in a 2018 interview that he knew Chicago fans had embraced him when he saw them show up to games wearing his tattoos on their sleeves. Yet, with retailers flooding Fanatix with orders, Rodman sued the company for $1 million. Goldschmidt ceased production before settling the case for an undisclosed amount.

April 26, 2020

Three journalists from The New York Times reviewed more than 260,000 words spoken by President Trump during the pandemic… imagine that being your task when you went to work tomorrow. I don’t know… the reason I find this fantastical is because Donald Trump somehow ended up the POTUS. Still phenomenal to me. So that said, this piece… while profoundly sad, is an incredible document of narcissistic behavior. For what it’s worth.

The New York Times analyzed every word Mr. Trump spoke at his White House briefings and other presidential remarks on the virus — more than 260,000 words — from March 9, when the outbreak began leading to widespread disruptions in daily life, through mid-April. The transcripts show striking patterns and repetitions in the messages he has conveyed, revealing a display of presidential hubris and self-pity unlike anything historians say they have seen before.

Nic Rotondo

Nic Rotondo

Nic Rotondo - is the lead designer for the Optiflux|MediaTribe. Optiflux is a nocturnal design shop focused on identities, branding and one-of-a-kind, custom-coded websites for clients all across North America. Our small tribe of freelance artists can also handle your 3d rendering or animation needs as well as any sound and video work... Small projects or big... come one, come all. We'll get it done.

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