Monday Morning Reads – 11/11

For this week, I have shortlisted a few articles across diverse topics.

  • Software Is Reorganizing the World – This is a six year old article, but just as relevant today as when it was written, if not more so. The author, Balaji Srinivasan, states that we humans are increasingly migrating to the ‘cloud’, leading to an “increasing divergence between our social and geographic neighbors”. He goes on to explore what the future of this trend might look like. Fascinating and thought-provoking.
  • The new dot com bubble is here: it’s called online advertising – In this detailed article, authors Jesse Frederik and Maurits Martijn question the effectiveness of digital advertising. At the core of their argument is the distinction between “selection effect (people see your ad, but were already going to click, buy, register, or download)” and “the advertising effect (people see your ad, and that’s why they start clicking, buying, registering, downloading).” They argue that online advertising is not meaningfully contributing to the ‘advertising effect’. It’s very interesting, because digital marketing continues to be sold on the key differentiating factor of measurability. True, we can now measure minute details of the campaigns, but do we know the larger picture of what the campaign truly delivered (incrementally) to our business?
  • Struggle Is What Gives Us Meaning And Makes Us Human – I think (for good or bad), there can be no denying that machines (powered by AI) are going to be a significant (and growing) part of our lives. This leads to the question – what does it mean to be human in this day and age? This is the topic that William Cho has addressed in this article. His answer to the question is ‘Struggle’. Many of us would initially find this counter-intuitive, conditioned as we are to think that the purpose of our lives is comfort, or the pursuit of happiness. However, start thinking deeper, and one might just agree that the author has a point.


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