My weekly collection of the provocative, intriguing, or curious. Mostly links related to the climate emergency this week. Obviously. 

Image credit: via The Patterns of Meaning blog.
  • It looks like a crisis, and it is a crisis. But it is also a moment when future possibilities are wide open. Jeremy Lent applies a “a general theory of change” in a fascinating but slightly technical post. (Thanks to Ian Christie for the link).
  • Growth needs to end. Vaclav Smil (nerd’s nerd, Bill Gates’ favourite technologist etc), has a new book out on the subject. “The economists will tell you we can decouple growth from material consumption, but that is total nonsense”.
  • Climate change is a moral issue. We need to stop treating it as a technical discussion. It’s more like ending the slave trade.
  • The ‘flight shame’ movement is gaining ground. Especially in Sweden. But it might be better framed as enjoying the positives from slower forms of travel. In Sweden, they already have a word for that.
  • The end of the media-tech boom. Founders say, “aggressive expansion”. The profit and loss figures say, “ridiculously huge losses”. Derek Thompson is sharp on the lessons from WeWork. In other words: Carlota Perez’ technology model is proving a reliable guide to the digital technology wave.
  • The life cycle of food. This exhibition at London’s V&A has a couple of weeks still to run. But if you can’t get there, Dezeen has the story. (Thanks to Sarah King).
  • The Greta Thunberg Helpline. Couldn’t really let the week go by without sharing this Australian sketch about a new phone service “for adults angry at a child”. (Video, 2’15″).

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“The whole world’s at sixes and sevens, and why the house hasn’t fallen down about our ears long ago is a miracle to me.” (Thornton Wilder)