I’ve noticed more people comparing social media to smoking lately, which is a compelling but limited analogy. The parallels are obvious: Both feel great at first but worse as time passes, demanding increasingly constant, compulsive consumption to achieve diminishing payoffs. Bot…
In early 2018, Bruce Sterling proclaimed that the smart city was dead, or rather, that it never quite existed in the first place. The idea of the “smar…
Drew Austin
The last newsletter I sent that wasn’t haunted by COVID-19 went out on February 21, a day I remember vividly. I went to a Knicks game that evening and …
Drew Austin
This year, we’ve spent more time than ever in our homes. Not surprisingly, our relationship to them has intensified. As the only bubbles of private spa…
Drew Austin
A year ago, I wrote about the increasingly casual nature of American attire and the aesthetic that Venkatesh Rao calls domestic cozy. I said that “by w…
Drew Austin
Back in 1967, Marshall McLuhan declared that “the city no longer exists except as a cultural ghost for tourists.” Although the internet didn’t yet exis…
Drew Austin
A few months ago, @turtlekiosk tweeted an idea that I keep thinking about: “In the future shoplifting won’t matter, not because loss prevention or surv…
Drew Austin
JANE JACOBS & URBAN DIVERSITY The Death and Life of Great American Cities, written by Jane Jacobs in 1961, is still the bible of urban planning, probab…
Drew Austin
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