It’s good to remember that even some of the best, most popular places on the Internet are still unknown to many. So the “Newsletters I Like” choice today is a website that I hope you’re already familiar with, but that I’m sharing in case you missed it: Brain Pickings.


Maria Popova is, in my estimation, one of the best things about the Internet. Her popular Brain Pickings website actually started as an email newsletter in 2006, which she eventually built into her popular longform chronicle of curiosities.

Curiosities?“, you ask. More like serendipit-awesome-osities: Two to three thoughtful, heartfelt, detailed, massively-hyperlinked articles per day about art, writing, science, design, history, or anything else which has crossed the transom of her interest.

Brain Pickings feels like pure oxygen on an Internet which can feel like a poorly-ventilated room, overpopulated with functional articles which lack the length and depth necessary to examine meaning. I look forward to her Sunday newsletter like I would look forward to an email from a friend who always sends me things that they know I’d like. Give yourself a weekly treat and sign up here to get it.

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I frequently worry that being productive is the surest way to lull ourselves into a trance of passivity and busyness the greatest distraction from living, as we coast through our lives day after day, showing up for our obligations but being absent from our selves, mistaking the doing for the being.
Maria Popova
'The Shortness of Life: Seneca on Busyness and The Art of Living Wide Rather Than Living Long' at Brain Pickings

With today’s mega-release of new Apple software, I think it’s a perfect occasion to share the next “Newsletters I Like” pick – MacStories Weekly.


On MacStories, my pal Federico Viticci and his team of experts consistently deliver thoughtful analysis and in-depth reviews of anything and everything related to Apple products. They now offer the MacStories Weekly newsletter every Friday. Think of it as a sort of end-of-the-week recap: Good articles you may have missed, app picks, interesting links, and “Tips from Ticci” himself.

You should sign up before this Friday’s edition as I’m guessing that this week’s issue will be one for the record books!1

  1. Yes – I’m aware that there are no record books for email newsletters, nor should there be. It’s just a figure of speech… Why do you always have to be so literal about these things, huh? []
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The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.
Coco Chanel
(Attributed)

Next up in our “Newsletters I Like” parade:  Asia Tech News Review.


As Asia Editor of The Next Web, I’ve found that Jon Russell is usually ahead of most of the tech press in anticipating new trends.

Why? Bangkok-based and with a beat that encompasses more than half the world’s population (all of whom seem to be getting online at the same time), Jon is working right in the middle of one of the most vital and, crucially, demographically-young markets for new technology. Put another way: While you were still scratching your head and wondering “Wait… When did all the smartphones get so big? And why does every app I own send “stickers” now?”, he had already figured out how the needs of people in Asia would be driving product development everywhere.

Asia Tech News Review provides “an overview of news and must-read editorial from China, India, Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia” every Sunday night in the USA (or Monday morning if you’re living in Asia like me).

His newsletter is, as he puts it, a labor of love. It shows. If you want to know where technology is headed, I think you should be reading it regularly.

(Noodles provided courtesy of Jon Russell)

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