It doesn’t seem so long ago when the promise of an inter-connected world was all the rage, with the free sharing of information being praised as the dawning of a new age for global communication and community. An audacious young Mark Zuckerberg praised his nascent social network, proclaiming that “Connecting the world is really important, and that is something that we want to do. That is why Facebook is here on this planet.”

The equally precocious founders of Google offered a mission to Do No Evil while organizing the world’s information to make it universally accessible and useful. Likewise, their…

I revisited this essay I wrote last year and wanted to repost it here on my Medium page. Somethings never change…

I recently came across a post on my Facebook page via a friend (a Blue) that linked to a blog post by a writer named Lori Gallagher Witt. Apparently, this post found its way to my feed through a viral sharing on Twitter by some well-known celebrities, the film director and actor Ron Howard among them.

I clicked through and read the blog post, which was an open letter in the form of a manifesto of how Ms. Witt…

The Real Tragedy of Chauvin-Floyd

Black vs. White? or Black + White?

With the verdict received in the trial of Derek Chauvin, one could hope that a certain sense of justice had been dealt for the death of George Floyd. Mr. Chauvin was certainly guilty of a crime, though it is beyond my purview to decide exactly what that crime was. In any event, the jury made its judgment. But where do we go from here? Apparently, many of our political leaders could not resist voicing their opinions from the safe perch of social media, mostly echoing the overarching assumption of systemic racism, not only in law…

We find ourselves approaching Month Nine of a world-wide pandemic shutdown with only a few isolated exceptions across countries. There seems to be no end in sight. This should suggest that the particular nature of a virus pathogen defies a rational, measured social response, especially for a free democratic society.

This nature is defined by an unmeasurable risk shrouded in a fog of uncertainty that is reflected in the emotional fear incited by the coronavirus. That fear is amplified by several scientific realities: there is yet no sure treatment cure, there is yet no effective, preventive vaccine, and there is…

Hint: It’s all about the data.

Over the past 30 years, we’ve witnessed a radical transformation of creative industries buffeted by digital formats. Moore’s Law governing the cost of digital computing has drastically reduced the costs of creative production and product distribution. For aspiring authors this means no need for commercial book printing — all one needs is a simple computer with a word processing program and eBook publishing software provided free online. …

Back in September, 2016, I wrote an essay posted here explaining why I would not be voting for either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump for POTUS. At the time I stated that “I do not believe Trump has the temperament, nor do I feel Clinton has the integrity, while neither display the requisite political skills to lead this nation.” At the time I argued for a protest vote and explained why, but nobody really needed to listen.

One could probably argue that I was only half right, because Trump did win the election and we’re still here. …

Hint: It’s all about the data.

Hint: It’s all about the data.

Over the past 30 years, we’ve witnessed a radical transformation of creative industries buffeted by digital formats. Moore’s Law governing the cost of digital computing has drastically reduced the costs of production and distribution. For example, a $250,000 analog studio can now be eclipsed by a $2,500 digital home studio. The zero marginal cost of digital distribution has also made large scale publishing and distribution of physical products obsolete. Following the simple economic law of supply and demand, these technological trends have led to an explosion of supply while collapsing the selling price of…

What’s next?

Reading the news each morning one might conclude that a significant part of our society has gone pretty much off the rails. A couple of article links are enough to make the point:

The Orwellian Nightmare

The Thought Police Are Coming

These trends are antithetical to a free society, so what is going on? It would be easy to point to one factor, like the police, as the cause of this meltdown but social science and history are usually a lot more complex than that. In fact, one might rightly suspect most of what we see on the television, read…

Create — Share — Connect

The coronavirus pandemic has taken away so much in the blink of an eye: lives, jobs, income, wealth, vacations, travel, live entertainment, eating out, socializing, family gatherings, birthday parties, graduations, sports, libraries, universities, among so many things we never knew we would (not) miss.

But the pandemic has also given us a special moment to reflect; to reflect on life’s true meaning and value.

Plagues, like war, strip us down and lay us bare, the reason why they are constantly explored through our arts and literature.

So, as we #stayathome, quarantined away from the frantic life of just a few…

As trite as that sounds…

The global coronavirus pandemic has consumed the news cycle for the past several months and quarantined us in our homes. I suppose this gives us all some time to reflect and think about some things. Not surprisingly, the crisis has divided our politics and media along familiar lines, despite all the admonishments that a biological pathogen doesn’t politically discriminate. Three months in and we now have red vs. blue viewpoints on the interpretation of uncertain data generated by speculative models, the divergence of expert opinions, on necessary mitigation policies, the costs and benefits of economic lockdowns, and even what to…

Michael Harrington

I am currently a tech start-up founder in the creative media original content space. Social science academic and author.

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