Archive for June, 2020

The Banjo is an African Instrument

Monday, June 29th, 2020

Highly educational Instagram post right here from Gahmya Drummond-Bey, that my wife shared with me:

View this post on Instagram

It's time for a history lesson. True inclusion also requires relearning our history. 💛💛💛 What's your favorite country song? #countrymusic #blacklivesmatter #teachersfollowteachers #blm #diversity #inclusion #allyship #ally #evolvedteacher #blackhistory #sharethemicnow #historylesson #banjo #lilnasx #debunked #nojusticenopeace✊🏾

A post shared by Gahmya | #BLM (@evolvedteacher) on

While I’ve long known the banjo was an African instrument, it’s nice to dig in more and understand that at a slightly deeper level from some wider and more diverse sources. My previous knowledge was largely rooted in some fellow white dudes explanations, like Béla Fleck’s Throw Down Your Heart and Bill Evans explanations. Don’t miss David Holt talking to Rhiannon Giddens though.

The resources:

The kind of music I’m most involved in is old time, which I think you could argue has an even more direct line to African music and instruments than country and bluegrass. I’d do well to remember that, as my experience on a day to day basic with the music is playing with people and going to events that are predominately white.

So yep. Blues. Jazz. Hip-hop. Reggae. Funk. Gospel. Soul. Swing. Zydeco. Country. It all is rooted in Black music.


Thursday, June 25th, 2020

Semilattice is a concept.

  1. A block is the basic element.
  2. Blocks attach to each other and form a list.
  3. A card consists of multiple lists of blocks and hand drawings.
  4. A card could have multiple parents and children. Locations are represented in familiar nested structure, but become relational and flexible.
  5. A designated space is within reach for quick access.

Like Notion.

Why Figma Wins

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020

Kevin Kwok:

Building for everyone in the design process and not just designers is also the foundation of Figma’s core loop, which drives their growth and compounding scale. That network effect is made possible by Figma’s key early choices like: 

• Architecting Figma to be truly browser-first, instead of just having storage be in the cloud

• Their head start in new technologies like WebGL and CRDTs that made this browser-first approach possible

• Focusing on a product purpose built for those designing vector based digital products

Aside from just being a well done product, “browser-first” is what makes Figma so great. All cloud all the time, but you don’t notice it being weird or janky. I’m not an all-day every-day designer, but for the design work I do do (lol) I’m 90% Figma and love it. The other 10% is just stuff I have Adobe muscle memory for and I’m lazy like that.

“Their understanding of their own economic power is amazing.”

Friday, June 5th, 2020

Callia Hargrove in Dan Frommer’s The New Consumer:

From my work at Teen Vogue — that job really opened my eyes to what the future can look like, and that people that are younger demand these things. 

It’s not like my parents’ generation where it was like, “It’d be nice if they would feature people that look like us, but, uh, you know, we’re not expecting it.” 

People that are younger, they demand that. Their understanding of their own economic power is amazing.

I’ve seen brands in the past week just lose so much business because people are like, “Guys, we’re not shopping with them.” It’s all on social media — people collectively coming together. “We’re not giving our money to this business. Let’s move over to this other brand that we’re going to tag in the comments of this brand that kind of messed up.”

I love it when people use their power as consumers for change.