There I sat, defeated after another grueling day at the computer. I’ve always counted my blessings for the chance to ply my trade in a field where many people often ask “how do you get into your industry?” But I suspect that beyond luck and “passion,” there are a few lesser-known characteristics that have allowed some of us the chance to forge a proper and fruitful career doing what we love.
In this month’s Editor’s Letter, Eugene weighs in on our changing relationship between the process and the outcome. We’ve now increasingly been open to the idea of bringing people along for the ride and letting them experience the journey of imperfection and challenge. But what does that mean for expectations when we let them see it all?
The last 6-8 weeks have been a series of personal uncertainties,  mostly due to a deep introspective look at what interests me today, how much these things interest me, and what could interest me even more. I soon came to the realization that my current set of opportunities and experiences lack that ability to  impact a decision meaningfully.
I used to think that brands themselves should be unwavering and rarely change beyond periodic updates; I don’t subscribe to that anymore. Brands that can find a way to maintain your trust while evolving and changing with the times are perhaps the most interesting and resilient. Looking back, I wish we had taken ourselves less seriously, earlier, but it’s not too late is it?
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Making It Up
Eugene and Charis discuss an essay written by Paul Jun, “The Four Dirty C-Words of the Internet”, and breakdown the usage of the words content, culture, community, and creator. They also talk about memes as shared language and the conduit through which beliefs are transmitted.
Charis and Eugene talk about the global appeal of Squid Game and the possibility of supposedly niche cultural entertainment going viral. They also discuss the importance of Frances Haugen, the latest Facebook whistleblower, coming forward to testify about the need for social media platform regulations.
Eugene and Charis discuss Star Atlas, a space-fantasy RPG built on the Solana blockchain, that indicates the promising possibilities of funding game development through digital asset ownership. They also talk about the prevalence of captions on TikTok and how the use of captions signals considerations of design and inclusion.
Charis and Eugene talk about a single topic inspired by “Nike’s End of Men” by Ethan Strauss. Their conversation covers a shift in Nike’s values (whether internal or what they project to the public), target audience, and marketing strategies.
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Artificial intelligence has been integrated into our everyday lives to a shocking degree. Walking down the street, we may not be consciously thinking about this. Understanding the process of this relentless integration can help us all know how our current reality has come to be. The new book, by Australian author Dr. Kate Crawford, Atlas of AI: Power, Politics, and the Planetary Costs of Artificial Intelligence helps to bring these two words down to earth, grounding the concept in social, political, environmental, and economic realities. Crawford has put in the hours to understand AI, and now readers can get to know it themselves.
Much of Sontag’s writing in On Photography revolves around the power photographs wield, as she argues that the quintessential nature of photographs is that they derive directly from reality. This is why they hold a certain authority, a certain sense of “realness” that works in other media, such as paintings, do not. Sontag writes that “Instead of just recording reality, photographs have become the norm for the way things appear to us, thereby changing the very idea of reality, and of realism.” 
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