➻ I suppose I should cover the big news in eBooks this week, but as Google Ends Their eBook Agreement with Indies and Apple Finally Meets Its Match (Hint: It’s Called the DOJ), the landscape looks as unsure as ever and I really don’t know what to think or write about it all. (I do wonder if Google’s decision has anything to do with the Google, Asustek plan to co-brand a 7-inch tablet PC that it sounds like we’ll be seeing soon.) Maybe I’ll head down to Chicago to see Nicholas Carr’s talk about A History of the Future of the Book and report back to you all.
➻ Or how about a video of Neil deGrasse Tyson talking about “how important it is to be sensitive to someone’s current state of mind when you are trying to teach or persuade.”
Being an educator is not only getting the truth right, but there has to be an act of persuasion in there, as well. Persuasion isn’t always, “Here’s the facts; you’re either an idiot or you’re not.” It’s, “Here are the facts and … a sensitivity to your [audiences'] state of mind. And it’s the facts plus the sensitive, when convolved together, [that] creates impact.
He made this point as a slight rebuke to Richard Dawkins “articulately barbed” teaching methods. To counter, and to show that there are worse approaches than his, Dawkins quotes a former editor of New Scientist magazine who, when asked what the philosophy of the magazine was, replied:
Our philosophy at New Scientist is this: Science is interesting, and if you don’t agree you can f*** off.”
It’s worth watching the video just to hear Dawkins curse.
➻ You could also listen in as Charlie Rose talks about business in China with Zhang Xin, CEO of Soho China, and two Portfolio authors—David Novak, CEO of Yum Brands and author of Taking People With You, and Ian Bremmer, President of the Eurasia Group and author of End of the Free Market and Every Nation for Itself. Brilliant people and conversation.
We stumble into things, lose our grip on other things, go to Japan or don’t go to Japan, whichever would be more indicative of life’s tendency to expel us from our dreams, and yet once in a great while we connect in such a way that there is no feeling whatsoever, the bat meeting the ball just right, no mind, big mind, and we round the bases, tracing an imperfect oval with our route, a woozy zero, our misshapen bliss. … Breathe out. You are chained to the world.
And the Brewers are on the field as I type this, Bob Uecker telling me about it in my headphones.
➻ The birth of a book, a beautiful thing.