Serendipitous learning (162)

I was searching for articles on something else when this headline attracted my attention.

How to Make a Happier Home

As we’re currently in our home almost 24/7 and working from home and traveling less will be a reality for a long while still, it’s not a surprise I opened this article. I never realized home design is a topic of scientific research, but it makes a lot of sense to research it since we spend so much time in our homes. Some interesting insights. Wood is good, so at least we made a proper decision on adding a wooden floor to our home before we moved in. Curves are good, so that’s where our home is totally off since it’s a box on a bigger box. High ceilings rock, so our living rooms gives us plenty of headspace, though it’s ratio length versus width is not ideal. The lower ceiling in the kitchen and its cramped feeling invites people to hang out at the dinner table for a chat. And windows are a life line to the outdoors, check on that with two large sliding doors and plenty of light throughout the house.

A day later, again searching for something else, I came across a report by the Happiness Research Institute.

The GoodHome report 2019: what makes a happy home?

According to this report, written together with/for an international home improvement company, there are five core emotions we have around our home: pride, comfort, identity, safety and control. Of these emotions pride is by far the most prevalent one. Some interesting findings in this report are that renovating a crappy bathroom really increases ones happiness with ones home. Perceived spaciousness is more important than actual size of the house. Home ownership doesn’t necessarily make you happier with your home in contrast to renting one. All five emotions are heavily dependent on the adaptability of a house to ones needs over time (more family members, less family members).

There’s way more to read in these two documents. I love serendipitous learning.

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Weg met die nieuwsbrief service?

Ik las met interesse wat Frank eerder deze week schreef over het in gebruik nemen van Mailpoet om z’n nieuwsbrieven te versturen in plaats van via Revue. Mijn interesse is gewekt omdat ik al langere tijd moeite heb met het gebruik van Mailchimp, de service die ik gebruik voor het versturen van mijn drie nieuwsbrieven. Mailchimp is met de jaren niet gemakkelijker geworden in gebruik, omdat het uitgegroeid is tot een volwaardig marketing instrument met toeters en bellen die ik niet gebruik. Simpel een nieuwsbriefje ontwerpen en versturen is er daardoor niet meer bij. Bovendien past het zelf hosten van de nieuwsbrief bij het pad dat ik (net als Frank) in ben geslagen om eigenaarschap te pakken van mijn eigen online data.

Er is alleen één ding dat me tegenhoudt. Door de e-maillijst zelf te gaan hosten ben je ook ineens eigenaar van de persoonsgegevens die nodig zijn om de nieuwsbrief te verzenden. Nu heb ik die verantwoordelijkheid bij Mailchimp liggen. Aangezien dat een grote organisatie is vertrouw ik erop dat ze hun beveiliging op orde hebben. Als ik naar mijn eigen opzet kijk, dan kan ik toch iets minder goed garanderen dat mijn site niet gehackt wordt. Natuurlijk zorg ik ervoor dat mijn site up to date is, maar toch. Ik ben in het verleden al een keer mijn gehele website kwijtgeraakt. Ik let nu beter op, maar ik ben geen IT-er en geen beveiligingsexpert.

Toch duik ik maar eens dieper in de opties van Mailpoet (of andere plugins), want WordPress inzetten als ‘one tool to rule them all’ is ook heel wenselijk.

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My mind is full of bits and pieces

I’m currently busy translating all the things I’ve read in recent months about storytelling, surveillance capitalism and conspiracy theory into actionable documents. My goal is to develop material to guide people in making more informed choices when it comes to online interaction. To get there I first need to untangle all the tiny bits and pieces that float around. Luckily a thing like Scapple was developed to assist me in this quest. For instance this is a screenshot of my attempt to disentangle all the reasoning behind not wanting to use Facebook (and the company’s other tools).

If you have strong compelling arguments against or pro feeding Zuck’s empire, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments (or send me an email).

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Down the research hole

I watched this excellent video (in German) the Man linked to yesterday. I then opened the document linked underneath the video containing a long list with references. I then clicked on some of the links. I then started downloading research papers on news headlines, fake news and conspiracy ‘theory’. I then discovered more research papers through citations and references. I then downloaded more research papers. I then had a bunch of papers stored for reading. I then realized I have to make time to read the papers.

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That moment

That moment when you started writing about a topic and after five hundred words realize you wrote something completely different than intended.

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Will it explode? (152)

Last night I tuned into the live stream of NASA to see the first launch of Space X that includes humans on board. I felt a bit uncomfortable watching it. It took me a while to figure out why, but then I realised that the last time I watched humans being sent into space was in 1986, when the Challenger exploded. I was seven and watching TV in someone else’s home. It was not real-time coverage like it was yesterday, but with a short delay the images of an exploding spacecraft were broadcasted on Dutch TV and I saw it happening in the midst of adults breathing in and falling silent. Since that day I can’t recall ever having watched a launch live. Not even when the Dutch astronaut Kuipers was sent to the ISS in 2004. That explains why I felt uncomfortable. I asked myself the question whether I wanted to witness a disaster real-time. But of course all went smooth. Just like the launch of all the other astronauts that visited ISS over the years.

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