2021-09-06 5 min read


Notes, 2021-09-06.

Social movements are evolving all the time, and an interesting example I keep coming back to is how new atheists turned into social justice advocates nearly overnight after realizing that fewer religious people did not equal less bigotry. Many of the movements of our day focus on the actions of individuals, such as energy conservation, curbside recycling, reusable bags, and ethical consumerism. Yet it's pretty implausible that members of the public can significantly reduce climate change, pollution, or unfair labor practices on their own. I hope that the next evolution of social movements will start to approach systems, too.

-Ruth Grace Wong

The most clicked link from last week's issue (~14% of opens) was artist Richard Ankrom's guerilla freeway sign installation. In the Members' Slack, we've been sharing best practices for maintaining project documentation and for avoiding burnout.

Planning & Strategy.

Making & Manufacturing.

Maintenance, Repair & Operations.

Distribution & Logistics.

Inspection, Testing & Analysis.


  • I was surprised to learn that we had a quarter million units of public housing in 1978. President Reagan slashed this funding in the 80s, causing a three to fourfold increase in homelessness in many cities during that decade. Now, we have 25,000 units - a tenth of what we had before. Federal funding for homelessness is one third of what it was in the 70s, while expenditures for homeowner subsidies have increased threefold.

Bangladeshis taking apart a ship for scrap, with no machinery, from Edward Burtynsky.

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