The Infatuation/The Curricula/Cold War lessons

Recomendo - issue #404

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Better restaurant guide

After too many disappointing dining experiences, I’ve given up on using Yelp as a reliable restaurant guide. My new favorite resource is The Infatuation, which has curated bar and restaurant lists for many major cities. Lists for Los Angeles (where I live) include “The Best Coffee Shops In LA For Getting Work Done,” and “The Best Armenian Restaurants In Los Angeles.” — MF

Create a learning guide for any subject 

The Curricula is a website to help you learn “anything” by generating a guide and resources. I’ve been curious about the Alexander Technique, a method of improving the mind-body connection, and what I was given was a summarized learning path and links to books, articles, and videos for each of the core concepts. All the content is generated by AI, so it is not guaranteed to be 100% accurate, but it did a decent job of providing a starting point for my research, and I appreciate the creator’s intent. — CD 

Cold War lessons

Large political currents are moving China and the US towards a new cold war. I found the best remedy to temper this emerging hysteria is a new Netflix documentary series on the first Cold War. In 9 parts, each episode of Turning Point goes into great detail about the origins of the mutual fears, the mad way demagogues fanned them and played them out, and the huge repercussions the conflict had on the entire world and everyday lives. In this story the nukes were the “turning point.” Along they way the series hints at the nature of a China vs US cold war, where AI is the turning point, and the lessons we might take from this recent history. — KK

Self-contained worlds

An ecosphere is a self-contained world that contains plants and animals inside a completely sealed container. They can live for decades, without ever opening it up to feed or clean. The algae make food for the tiny brine shrimp, and the shrimp make carbon dioxide for the plants. Together they make a circle of life. I’ve had ecospheres on my desk for 30 years. Until I inadvertently killed it, one of mine lasted 25 years. I’ve bought small ecospheres and “repotted” them in larger vessels, but even small ones can last many years. A good deal for a small ecosphere is Shrimp Bubble, which comes with an internal magnet to clean the inside glass without opening it. — KK

Universe Size Comparison

Here’s a soothing 3-minute visualization that zooms in and out across the known scales of the Universe — from the tiniest particle to the vast cosmic web. This higher perspective makes me feel both small and a miracle. — CD 

Swiss army knife for PDF tasks

If you need to merge, split, compress, or convert PDFs, try ILovePDF. This free site transforms PDFs into various file formats (and vice versa). You can also use it to edit, sign, unlock, encrypt, and repair PDFs. — MF


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