Wells Baum is a Futurist, Creator, and Music Explorer. Always connecting the dots on screen.

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7 articles to read this weekend

What a week. I returned from SXSW sick. I’m still sick as write this but that doesn’t mean I’ll skip out on sharing some inspirational pieces I read this week.

The era of Facebook is an anomaly.

The era of Facebook is an anomaly. The idea of everybody going to one site is just weird. Give me one other part of history where everybody shows up to the same social space. Fragmentation is a more natural state of being.

I keep coming back to this. No one is leaving Facebook any time soon, they are just using it differently and less frequently, like email. Email used to be the cream of the crop, then Facebook came along, and now it’s about Instagram and Snapchat. Our internet habits change, quickly.

The Tri-X Factor.

“Grain is life,” Corbijn says, “there’s all this striving for perfection with digital stuff. Striving is fine, but getting there is not great. I want a sense of the human and that is what breathes life into a picture. For me, imperfection is perfection.”

Tri-X factor is a type of monochromatic black/white film, often described as “dirty,” that emerged in the 1950s where it became a film of choice for many photographers. It’s scarce but still can be bought to this day. Tri-X pictures are stunning and raw; the fact fact they’re taken on analog cameras adds an extra element of experience to them. The photographer has no idea what the images look like until they get developed. The more I read about original photography, the less I want to use my iPhone, but the iPhone just makes it so darn easy.

Show Your Work: Austin Kleon on the Art of Getting Noticed.

Almost all of the people I look up to and try to steal from today, regardless of their profession, have built sharing into their routine. These people aren’t schmoozing at cocktail parties; they’re too busy for that. They’re cranking away in their studios, their laboratories, or their cubicles, but instead of maintaining absolute secrecy and hoarding their work, they’re open about what they’re working on, and they’re consistently posting bits and pieces of their work, their ideas, and what they’re learning online.

This is what I love about the Internet and owning a blog. You can gather (steal) information from the web and people you admire and spin it into your own words while giving credit to the aggregated sources. Austin echoed these same words at SXSW this week and I suspect he’ll share similar thoughts during his talk this Tuesday at Paper 53’s new offices where I’ll be in attendance :).

Remember: Show. Your. Work.

Seth’s Blog: Are we not plankton?.

The fabled Oreo tweet and the now legendary Ellen selfie are examples of whale eating plankton. Each retweet is so worthless to these whales and the brands that come from the TV world that they need millions of them, constantly. They’re hooked on tonnage, and will dumb down whatever they do to get more of it. To get mass in the social media world, you need luck and you need to pander.

Seth Godin, king marketer, is also keen at provoking discussion. I agree that most marketers don’t have honest intentions, i.e. focusing on adding quantity (noise) over long-term quality. But we live in a world of brand ecstasy, shortened attention spans and short-term profits so we’ll take any extra attention we can get. Attention = profits, as menacingsparrw pointed out to me.

By the way, Seth is running a course on Skillshare called The Modern Marketing Workshop. Join me and thousands of others to get feedback on your next project.

How Moleskine Transformed The Process Of Reading.

Handwriting is shifting from a necessity to more of a conscious act…even a certain kind of creative luxury. For people who want to remember something or to take a break in a fast paced world or to trigger their creative mind, the act of writing by hand is very useful. Handwriting is now a conscious tool used by our fans whether they are keeping a journal, planning a to-do list, or designing a wire-frame for a website that will ultimately be built using a computer.

I think Millennials are the last generation to support pen and paper handwriting. People communicate and takes notes now through images, emoticons, and mobile text. But some people (me included) will always use handwriting as a means for focusing. Writing a to-do list on screen is less forceful than writing one by hand, where each stroke of the pen is like a positive reinforcement to get that task done. I love handwriting, but I suspect that’s what the previous generation thought about cursive which is pretty much extinct today.

Don’t Quote Me on This.

Quotation becomes a way not to add depth to your thinking, but to avoid thinking in the first place.

Is quoting a cop-out? It’s well worth asking as to why people quote rather than inject their own thoughtful opinion. I think we’re all guilty of pulling what’s already been said and assuming that says it all, but using a quote as a scapegoat may be just be outright thought-laziness.

How Twitter Is Reshaping The Future Of Storytelling.

“that this kind of storytelling is quick, even ephemeral, and largely improvised. It’s really more like broadcasting than writing, and one of the things that makes Twitter so intimate, even in its rowdy, buzzing, crowd-y-ness, is that you are reading someone’s work in real time.”

Let’s not kid ourselves. Twitter is the next book format. Just look at author’s Teju Cole’s latest Twitter story. Twitter fiction is a thing, a new medium that will lead to major events and books. Remember, the Internet is about showing your work as it happens.



  1. menacingsparrw reblogged this from bombtune and added:
    well heck.
  2. bombtune posted this