150k botanical images enter the public domain

“Had he lived in our time, Thoreau would’ve been thrilled to know that the Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL), the world’s largest open-access digital archive dedicated to the natural world, is now offering more than 150,000 high-resolution illustrations for copyright-free download.”

Over 150,000 Botanical Illustrations Enter the Public Domain (Hyperallergic)

The public domain is a blessing for students and artists. The freedom to remix and reinterpret the work of those who came before us is an integral part of our cultural evolution. Thanks to the web, the public domain is more accessible than ever.

Newsletters: Too much of a good thing?

“A funny thing happened in our current Newsletter Renaissance: inundation. Much like the television streaming era which is now in full-swing, we’re learning that there can, in fact, be too much of a good thing. At least for those of us who are completists. Which is to say: there are too many newsletters that I now subscribe to and want to read, but often cannot. Because, well, time.”

Newsletters as Newspapers (M.G. Siegler

Time is a finite resource, as is our attention. I’m adapting by skimming headlines more often, and saving my deep-reading moments for books and my Pocket list.

Watching: 10 years with Miyazaki

Over the weekend I started watching 10 Years with Hayao Miyazaki, a four-part documentary series covering the life and work of Studio Ghibli’s prolific co-founder and filmmaker. You can watch it for free on NHK World Japan.

Despite their stellar reputation, I never got into the Ghibli films. (Hell, I still haven’t watched Totoro in full!) But after seeing the emotion and labour that Miyazaki pours into his work, I’m definitely going to go back and catch up.

We need a social tipping point on climate

“I used to feel like I was doing something. I was switching over my lightbulbs, cutting meat out of my diet, catching public transport, and printing on both sides of the paper. I felt virtuous. But now it’s clear that these small acts of good citizenry are not working fast enough to make enough of an impact. There’s an urgency I didn’t understand before, a curve on the graph which accelerates under its own momentum.”

How do we go on? (Australian National University)

Our little wins aren’t big enough to offset climate chaos. Big moves need to come from those who can make the biggest impact.

Two useful methods for personal productivity

When I’m feeling the pressure of competing obligations, or not sure if I should work on something, or if something I am working on feels like it’s just not right, I turn to Think, Organize, Do. These are the three modes of work that everyone needs in order to function with purpose. These modes inform and feed each other, and when I’m in a rut, burned out, or overwhelmed, it’s usually because I haven’t spent enough time in one or more of these modes.”

Think, Organize, Do (Gina Trapani, Postlight)

I’m wearing a bunch of hats at work. I’m a platform administrator, overseeing tools and processes; I’m a content marketer, working on project management & asset creation; and I’m a community manager, working on program development & implementation.

Somewhere around all that I’m also working on my personal stuff — this blog, a few others, WP Durham, certifications, upping my coding skills. Then there’s my family and home and health, other hobbies, and all that gaps in between.

There’s a lot going on.

80% of the time I feel in control, like everything just flows from one task to another, like all the things are a latticework. But then there’s the 15% of the time where I feel out of alignment. And the 5% where I feel straight up overwhelmed.

Keep reading…Two useful methods for personal productivity

The secular faith of Workism

The economists of the early 20th century did not foresee that work might evolve from a means of material production to a means of identity production. They failed to anticipate that, for the poor and middle class, work would remain a necessity; but for the college-educated elite, it would morph into a kind of religion, promising identity, transcendence, and community. Call it workism.”

Workism Is Making Americans Miserable (The Atlantic)

One side frets over the anxiety and blurred lines separating work life and personal life, while the other side gets knocked around in an unpredictable “gig economy” designed to make things more convenient for those who can afford it.