10 Weekend Reads

The weekend is here! Pour yourself a mug of  coffee, grab a seat by the fire, and get ready for our longer-form weekend reads:

The Downfall of Diddy Inc.: After months in court, Sean Combs withdrew his racially charged lawsuit against Diageo. A look inside that battle reveals the failed attempt of a fading hip-hop mogul—who’s been buffeted by charges of sexual assault—to salvage a crumbling business empire. (Businessweek)

America’s New Business Boom: Americans Have Been Forming New Businesses at Record Rates. But is This a Real Startup Boom—or Just The Rise of Gig Work and Side Hustles? (Apricitas Economics)

How Much of the World Is It Possible to Model? Mathematical models power our civilization—but they have limits. (New Yorker)

The Barcode Engineered Its Own Downfall: For decades, the tiny symbol has been the plumbing of global capitalism. It might finally be replaced. (The Atlantic)

How a 27-Year-Old Codebreaker Busted the Myth of Bitcoin’s Anonymity: Once, drug dealers and money launderers saw cryptocurrency as perfectly untraceable. Then a grad student named Sarah Meiklejohn proved them all wrong—and set the stage for a decade-long crackdown. (Wired)

Revisiting Madonna-ology in the Era of Taylor Swift Studies: If 2023 began with the launch of Swift’s Eras Tour, it is ending with the launch of Madonna’s Celebration Tour, a career survey of her greatest hits. And if Swift has an outsize influence on culture today, it’s hard to imagine someone besides Madonna who has had a more outsize influence on cultural studies, particularly in the early 1990s, when Madonna’s peak coincided with foundational works of queer theory significantly through Madonna, “an exemplary popular text.” (Los Angeles Review of Books)

Fracking Eyeballs: How an alliance between psychologists and advertisers at the turn of the 20th century taught us how to measure (and monetize) human attention. (Asterisk)

33 Life Learnings from 33 Years: Every year, I try to spend some time reflecting on what I’ve learned along the way. In the past, this list of life learnings was just for me—a private accounting of my own journey, growth, failures, and missteps. But this year, I’d like to share it with all of you. (The Curiosity Chronicle)

A Knife Forged in Fire: The author wanted a Japanese-style kitchen blade made for him by hand. What he witnessed was a combination of artistry and atomic magic. (Chicago Magazine)

Then and Now: Revisiting the Sopranos’ New Jersey 25 Years: Later On the anniversary of the show’s premiere, its creator and location manager reflect on some of its iconic settings and why they were chosen. (New York Times)

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business this week with Shomik Duttaco-founder and managing partner at Overture, a venture capital firm focused on climate tech and sustainability startups. He is also co-founder and general Partner of Higher Ground Labs. Previously, he was an aide in the Obama White House and an advisor to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski.


The record-high $6trn in money market accounts is likely a tailwind to equities, credit, and rates, and ultimately the economy, in particular hiring, housing, and inflation.

Source: Torsten Slok, Apollo Global


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I am still on book leave!  Coming back in a few weeks…


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