The Slow Winter by James Mickens

The reads to me like hardware engineering meets Charlie from It’s Always Sunny:

As the transistors became increasingly unpredictable, the foundations of John’s world began to crumble. So, John did what any reasonable person would do: he cloaked himself in a wall of denial and acted like nothing had happened. “Making processors faster is increasingly difficult,” John thought, “but maybe people won’t notice if I give them more processors.” This, of course, was a variant of the notorious Zubotov Gambit, named after the Soviet-era car manufacturer who abandoned its attempts to make its cars not explode, and instead offered customers two Zubotovs for the price of one, under the assump- tion that having two occasionally combustible items will distract you from the fact that both items are still occasionally combustible. John quietly began to harness a similar strategy, telling his marketing team to deemphasize their processors’ speed, and emphasize their level of parallelism.

Read the whole thing

Original John Lennon “Imagine” demo


From Kottke:

While sifting through boxes upon boxes of the original tapes for Yoko Ono, engineer Rob Stevens discovered something truly remarkable that had gone unnoticed all these years. “Early 2016, during the gestation period of this project, I’m in the Lennon archives with my people going through tape boxes that have labeling that’s unclear, misleading, or missing entirely”, says Stevens. “There’s a one-inch eight-track that says nothing more on the ‘Ascot Sound’ label than John Lennon, the date, and the engineer (Phil McDonald), with DEMO on the spine. No indication of what material was on the tape. One delicate transfer to digital later, the “Imagine” demo, subsequently enhanced superbly by Paul Hicks, appears within this comprehensive set. It was true serendipity.

Weekly Roundup

My favorite links this week:

Have a great weekend.