Welcome to this week’s edition of our Friday Quality Linkage column. Please enjoy this week’s collection of interesting and entertaining links. Brew a fresh cup of coffee, find a comfortable place, and relax.
[Editor’s Note: This week our family is departing Orlando, ending our crazy two-month RV trip along the US east cost. I’m nowhere near as caught up on current events as I would normally be, and most of what I’ve heard about in terms of news stories has been bleak at best, which is the kind of headspace I really don’t feel like dwelling in at the moment. So, I’m keeping this week’s Linkage a bit more lighthearted/fun. Enjoy! See you next week, once I’m back in Oklahoma City and things are back to “normal”. —Chris]
Video above and link below contain NSFW language.
Estelle Caswell of Vox examines how some of the world’s greatest rappers develop their lyrical and rhyming structures. It’s pretty fascinating, and will have me thinking about my favorite rap songs in new ways for the foreseeable future.
With pleasure, though stand by for some slightly quirky choices. I doubt anyone else at TED would pick exactly these five! Let’s see….
In early 2015, Colin Laird of Abe Books traveled to Tokyo, Japan and visited a lot of bookstores there. In this article, he shares some stories and photos from the experience:
Like many areas of Tokyo, space [in the Jinbōchō/Jimbocho neighborhood] is at premium and bookshops are crammed from floor to ceiling with books. Many shops spill out into the street with tables filled with books and protected shelves attached to outdoor walls tempting passersby to take a break from the hustle of their commute to browse an ever-changing selection. Most bookstores face north to avoid exposure to the hot summer sun and direct sunlight, which gives booklovers an uninterrupted row of shops to browse. Japanese author Haruki Murakami mentions Jimbocho in many of his books, and used to operate a jazz club nearby. The world famous Manga publisher, Shueisha, is located in Jimbocho. This district lives and breathes books and literature.
Katie Dupere of Mashable shares the awesome story of Jordyn Castor, a blind programmer who is playing a large role in Apple’s accessibility efforts:
As someone who was always encouraged to challenge expectations, Castor says she has one simple message for the next generation of blind coders, like the children who will sit down with Swift Playgrounds in the fall.
“Blindness does not define you,” she says. “It’s part of who you are as a person, as a characteristic — but it does not define you or what you can do in life.”
In 1963, The Twilight Zone creator Rod Serling was interviewed by Australian radio host Binny Lum. As part of PBS’ excellent animated series, Blank on Blank, a portion of the interview was converted into a charming little animation I think is worth a few minutes of your time.
I particularly liked the bit at 3:05 where he talks about the imaginations of kids:
As evidenced by the youngsters liking this show, I’ve always felt, “This is wonderful,” because I’ve always the most unfettered imagination belongs to young people, and they don’t walk through life, they fly, and that’s marvelous. They defy the law of gravity — mentally, anyway.
I highly recommend watching all of the Blank on Blank interviews, they’re great. There’s also a podcast component to the series (iTunes / Overcast), although it hasn’t been updated in a few months. (I prefer watching the animated versions anyway.)
This story by Michael D. Shear of The New York Times shows that Obama is a night-owl worker like myself. This bit was funny to me:
To stay awake, the president does not turn to caffeine. He rarely drinks coffee or tea, and more often has a bottle of water next to him than a soda. His friends say his only snack at night is seven lightly salted almonds.
“Michelle and I would always joke: Not six. Not eight,” Mr. [Sam Kass, former personal chef to the Obama family] said. “Always seven almonds.”
I can totally relate. #TeamSevenAlmonds
Got any suggestions for articles, videos, stories, photographs, and any other links you think we should be posting in our weekly Quality Linkage? Please do let us know on Twitter.