July 2013

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Here it is: The trailer to the new Wikileaks movie, “The Fifth Estate,“ starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the man in question, Julian Assange. As you might guess, Wikileaks has already commented on this(via @AlexJamesFitz)

Should be interesting. Of course, anything with Cumberbatch is. 

Nice suprise a couple of German actors.

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Whether in Beirut, Cairo, Dubai, Riyadh or even Gaza City, small technology firms are multiplying, creating a sort of “start-up spring”. …
Although the Arab world is behind other regions in internet use (see chart), it is catching up fast, along with smartphone penetration and e-commerce. What is more, cultural and linguistic barriers provide some protection against foreign internet giants.

There is plenty of money sloshing about, but investors prefer safe, tangible bets such as property and factories over putting their cash into high-risk start-ups. “Venture capital is an animal people here can’t quite understand,” explains an American executive who is raising a fund in Dubai. “Investors often ask: ‘What do you mean, you can lose all the money?’”

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It’s called a lilac chaser. You’ve seen it before. It’s an optical illusion with a small black cross in the middle, encircled by twelve blurry lilac-colored dots. A green dot animates over the lilacs as though counting the time on a futuristic clock. Stare at the cross long enough and the lilacs disappear, one by one. But the moment you get distracted and look away, the lilacs come back.

The black cross is the work you do. The lilacs are all the things ancillary to your work. They’re the small choices you’ve made around your black cross: the time you wake up, the tools you use, what you have for breakfast, when you check your email, and so on. They’re the various aspects of a daily routine—things that, when fixed in place, disappear with the passage of time.

How your habits become productivity-draining distractions


Deep thoughts and optical illusions for your Monday.

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