$100m to Change the World

The MacArthur Foundation and Lever for Change just announced the latest round of their 100&Change competition. $100m will go to a single proposal capable of solving the world’s toughest problems. I love this competition and how it shakes up traditional philanthropy.

Also, Lever for Change’s CEO, Dr. Cecilia Conrad, was on my podcast last year. The conversation we had is easily one of my favorites.

On May 22, 2024, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced the launch of a new round of its 100&Change competition for a single $100 million grant to help solve one of the world's most critical social challenges. The registration period is now open.

100&Change | $100 Million Grant Competition |

No Web Without Women

Much of the Web we use today exists because of contributions by women who invented, coded, and designed it. This website is an interactive catalog listing various web technologies and honoring the women who helped make them happen.

For example, the first ever web browser on the Mac was created by Nicola Pellow.

As an undergraduate math student, Nicola Pellow joined the nineteen members of the WWW Project at Switzerland's CERN in 1990. Building off her colleague's work, Pellow contributed to the creation of a web browser compatible across many operating systems. Upon its launch in May 1991, she continued to help increase compatibility, making web browsing more broadly available to users around the world. After finishing her studies, Pellow returned to work with CERN and helped create the first web browser for the classic MacOS on Apple computers, called MacWWW.

No Web Without Women

Librarians Fight for Our Privacy

I have a soft spot in my heart for libraries and librarians. I didn’t realize that privacy rights are one of the battlegrounds where they fight for us.

Sounds extreme, right? Well, companies that got their start as academic publishers have spent the last several decades transforming themselves into hugely profitable data analytics firms. Elsevier, for example, owns ScienceDirect, the premier database of peer-reviewed journals. It is a subsidiary of RELX, a global data broker that also owns LexisNexis and collects massive databases of personal information it then sells to government agencies and businesses to use in algorithms for things like policing, insurance, and banking.

Librarians Are Waging a Quiet War Against International “Data Cartels” | The Markup

Quit More Often

I’m a big fan of Steven Levitt from Freakonomics fame, and one of his hallmarks of advice is that we don’t quit enough. Put another way, we think too dearly of the status quo.

I’ve been thinking about this more in the context of helping, especially when trying to help people with entrenched problems. It’s as easy to get in a helping rut as any other rut. This doesn’t mean you have to quit on the person, but maybe the right idea for now is to try something new.

But even accounting for these limitations, the results of the study still suggest a way to break out of those painful cycles of hesitation and indecision that people often get caught in when contemplating major life decisions. If the choice is between action and inaction, and you’re genuinely unsure about what to do, choose action.

Steven Levitt's advice for making big life decisions | Quartz


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