Two Identical Puffs

Hello internet friends,

have you ever been so generic that you saw a stock photo and thought it was you?

“Dominik, this could be something for your newsletter!” That wasn’t a wrong assumption at all.
Stone Age Cave Symbols May All Be Part of a Single Prehistoric Proto-Writing System – fascinating. Even more fascinating that we’re slowly moving back to that system these days. 🥳

This is very much my kind of humor: I commissioned an oil painting of Barbra Streisand’s cloned dogs
Just look at it.

I’ll share a secret with you – I, too, forget most of the articles I mention here in my emails. I do hope that every one of them is of interest to some of you, but like so many things most of these links are ephemeral, interesting for a moment, gone the next.
But some of them stay in my mind, often just under the surface and just once in a while they poke their head out to ask: “Hey, remember me?” And one of them is this pretty incredible story: I fell in love with a female assassin
That article is eleven years old now, did anyone of you ever watch the “major Hollywood film” that they wanted to make out of the story?


No Hugging

Hello internet friends,

here I am again. My knee hurts.

Movie news

Turns out people don’t watch movies at the cinema anymore. That’s why proper movie-movies with proper movie stars end up on Netflix before their time at the cinema: Was Annihilation too brainy for the box office?
If it is anything like the book, it might not be too brainy but too bloody creepy.

Music news

I’ve made my peace with the fact that I’m not with it when it comes to music. (It’s not an age thing – I never was with it.) But who knows, maybe this helps? 25 Songs That Tell Us Where Music Is Going
I’ve look through maybe half of them and so far I knew one and only hated one, too. This might be alright.

Meme news

It is probably the only reference page that matters and I’m not talking about Wikipedia. The story of the internet, as told by Know Your Meme
I honestly don’t know anymore if I love or hate the internet and internet culture.

Hug news

Aw, crap: No hugging: are we living through a crisis of touch?


Swipe Swipe Swipe

Hello internet friends!

I’m sitting here in the setting sun, listening to Pitbull. Which is exactly the reason why I didn’t add Spotify to my Tinder profile, I mean – I don’t need yet another reason to hardly ever have a match there.

Oh, no, it’s Dave again.

Confession corner: I quite like the whole idea of late night talk shows. A bit of mediocre stand-up, some banter with a sidekick while sitting at a desk, an interview or two with some random celebrity that might or might not be scripted in advance, some music – what else would you need on television before going to bed? (Actually I hardly ever watch these before going to bed. I watch them randomly on YouTube during my lunch break. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯)
One of the all time great hosts of these kinds of shows is David Letterman. And while he’s not doing that anymore, he did give this really good interview.

Uncle Licky

It seems like everybody loves the new Nintendo Switch and even I ponder if it’s something I might want to have. It’s the first Nintendo thing since the Wii that actually seems interesting – but maybe that’s just the hype talking. And because everybody is also a bit of an idiot it is now a thing to lick the Switch cartridges. Because they intentionally made them that way to keep people from eating them.
(This section title is stolen from this episode of Roderick on the Line.)

The dangers of wearing no pants at work

Yes, yes, we have all seen the BBC video with the intruding children by now. But do we know exactly why everybody shared it? To learn more, a proper analyst breaks it down for us step by step.

Evil dog news

Not evil news about dogs. News that dogs are evil.
Or that dogs are at least very good at manipulating humans into doing their biding. Which, as the lady in the article says, should come as no surprise to anyone who was ever in the vicinity of a dog.

I’d tap that island

Turns out you can learn a lot about people if you work at the same place for twenty years, especially if you have a lot and very passionate customers. Mark Rosewater, the head designer of Magic: the Gathering, sure did. And he shared twenty lessons in this talk. (Warning: long video.)
And because he knows that some people rather don’t watch a long video, here it is as an article for actual reading. (Well… in three parts. The second and third parts are available, too. So now you get to read three long articles.)

Humans need not apply

We’ve already managed to create embryos without any male involvement, but now some scientists managed to create one without an egg, just using stem cells. I’m pretty sure we’re heading towards a future where life isn’t really needed to create life anymore.
(Section title from this video. Don’t watch it if you’re easily scared by robots taking our jobs.)

Hello to the new readers! And thanks to those of you who gave me feedback on the new-ish format, that was very nice.


Scan This

Hello internet friends,

aren’t we all excited about a new week, lol.
Onwards. Or maybe not quite, yet. After all it is monday, so just for getting up and starting the week, we should get a little reward. And here it is – New Order’s Blue Monday, played on instruments from the 1930s.

I still didn’t manage to watch the new Deadpool movie but I already managed to read this think piece: Why Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine is Actually Way Better Than The 2016 Deadpool

A few weeks back a group of ~artists~ claimed they had smuggled Microsoft Kinect scanners into the Neue Museum in Berlin and used them to make a very high resolution 3D scarn of the Nefertiti bust. Turns out not so much – it is way more likely that a copy of the museum’s own scan data found its way to them.
This is quite something.

“If I look even more tired than usual, it might be this man’s fault.
He said, like addicts do when they blame the drug producers instead of facing their own weak will.

New section alert!

Interesting links for which I couldn’t think of a little paragraph so I just dump them on you in the hope that you still find them as interesting as I did

The Myth of the Barter Economy – Adam Smith said that quid-pro-quo exchange systems preceded economies based on currency, but there’s no evidence that he was right.

The roots of Tim Cook’s activism lie in rural Alabama

Why Nobody Can Build an Email Killer

You are welcome.

Looking back one year and trying to figure out what happened since then

I said the name of that section would change, didn’t I? Well, here you go. Do they have courses on naming things better?

Last year around this time we were thinking about how our attention is being monetized and oh boy, did nothing change.
It is a big war on the web though – on the one hand, we have publishers, who fight ad-blocking in every way they can and on the other hand we have the first browser vendor who ships a (preview) version of their main product with ad-blocking built in.

Be safe, everybody. And maybe don’t go viral for the wrong reasons.

Buy! Buy! Buy!

Hello, internet friends!

If you aren’t yet, you might want to consider watching “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” – it is really, really good.

Because we have allowed our attention to be monetized, if you want yours back you’re going to have to pay for it.

The Cost of Paying Attention

And yes, I did just recommend a series on Netflix, where you basically have to pay for the privilege of not being advertised to. (At least not overly so.)
That’s how things are now.


If you had any doubt that we are living in the future, here is a woman flying a fighter jet simulator with her mind. That is pretty great – except, you know, maybe not do that with military hardware? But I guess that’s where the money is.


Have a good week, everybody.
We’ll get through this together.

Who am I?

Don’t expect this to happen at regular intervals. The name might have been a hint. Basically I will write this whenever I feel like it. (Or when someone sends me a bucket of gold to do so. Honestly, I’ve always been willing to sell out.

1.0 Delivered/Read

Most modern messaging clients tell the sender of a message if the recipient recieved and actually read the sent message. Some, like WhatsApp, even show the last time people used the software.
That is literally hell for people with an unhealthy dose of social anxiety. Most people might not read too much into it, but it’s a whole new layer on how and what to communicate.
And disabling those features – as it is possible on some clients – sends a whole other message, because even that is usually visible for other people.

And the fact is that those technologies are still pretty young and we haven’t quite figured out what the proper etiquette around them are.

We have learned that requiring read receipts in emails is something that only Outlook users know about and only people with sociopathic and controllic tendencies would do. (There is a surprising overlap in those two groups.) Most of us have also learned to keep emails short and sweet. (The irony of mentioning that in a rambling newsletter is not lost on me.) We do know that calling people in the middle of the night is really quite rude.
Most of us might even think that calling unannounced at every point of the day is pretty rude. Who is using phones for calling people anymore, anyway?


This matches well with the Ox and Moron section of the last newsletter. People – and by people I mean me – tend to have different standards on how to understand their own and other people’s behavior around these issues. While it’s perfectly fine to just ignore a message for now when I do it, I do feel slightly miffed when I see that someone has received and read my message and does not respond right away.
I might even be forced to call them.

2.0 This is the wurst! Or not.

Last sunday I have figured out an ingenious way to judge German towns.
If I manage to find a nice bratwurst in a bun on a Sunday afternoon in town without having to take a car, the town gets the thumbs up.

I am sad to say that Lörrach didn’t make it.

3.0 A brief moment of panic

Last night, Twitter was down for a short while.
Last week, I was unable to use Instagram for a couple of days.
Both events scared me more than they should. Crisis of identity. Who am I if not @dominik?
Now that I am back living in my home town, I seem to be “The young Mr Schwind” to most people which freaks me out even more.

This should do it for now. Thanks again for reading, it is rather nice of you to do so.
If you have anything at all to say, you can just use the reply function. Tinyletter says that I get those and I do take their word for it.

Floating Particles

1.0 Hi!

After I posted the link to this newsletter on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and WeChat, a whole bunch of you signed up – thanks a lot! You’re all wonderful people! And I am pretty sure I can even say this without lying, which is even nicer.

2.0 $$$

Yesterday I skipped a podcast commercial for the first time.

I usually don’t do this. And even though I am one of the many people who feel that their lovely internet of yore got taken over by the evils of commercialism, I tend to not mind well-made advertisement in my media. And by well-made I mostly mean: relevant without giving me the feeling that they were creepily targeted towards exactly me.
Podcast ads more or less work for me in that way – I have bought goods and services because they paid for air time on a podcast. Given that I doubt that anyone tracks me and inserts the right audio ad in a podcast, it does not feel creepy, even though it is targeted right at the market segment that I chose to belong to.

Now that I said that out loud, I am sure that someone is actively working on that idea. Cookies could work in podcast clients. Move the audio files with markers through a central ad-network server. Insert targeted audio ads.
Honestly, no. Do not do that. Please. Ever.

3.0 You’re an ox and a moron

A few days ago I saw an article in which the author was mad – really mad – that someone changed their opinion on a topic between in the timeframe between 2007 and 2014.
It is pretty amazing that we humans in general tend to grow, learn new facts, adapt to new realities, process new information and yet we are utterly confused when someone else does it.

Of course we don’t want people in positions of power to suddenly turn 180° on important topics – we would be right in being pretty mad at a politician who suddenly made policy that goes very much against what they promised during their election campaign.
Well, we probably would be mad but not all that surprised.

But we don’t even have to look at a timeframe of seven years – people contradict themselves and change their minds all the time. Going from “having a coffee would be a clever idea” to “drinking that coffee was not a clever idea” only needs the (apparently at this point surprising and new) information that it’s 10pm and one needs to get up early the next day.

4.0 Monday

Have a good start of the week, everybody. Stay healthy and awesome.