Found/Saved/Subscribed/Shared - Dan Taylor-Watt

What content has Dan Taylor-Watt noticed recently, and why?

Happy Wednesday.

When I think about why certain people are so interesting, I’m always reminded of that quote by Dale Carnegie, ‘To be interesting, be interested’. That’s a feature of all the people we’ve been interviewing for this series; it’s why someone is interested in yoga, someone else in nature and ecology, and the third in psychology, and they all have equally interesting things to recommend, as our recent interviewees have (Steve Bryant, Rosie Yakob, Anab Jain and Anubha Bhonsle).

This week we have digital consultant Dan Taylor-Watt. He writes a fascinating newsletter too. 

On to this week’s:

Dan Taylor-Watt is a digital product consultant, writer and illustrator. He was previously Director of Product for BBC iPlayer & BBC Sounds. Dan is based in Bath, UK.

As Twitter continues its rapid descent into hell, I’m increasingly finding LinkedIn to be an unexpected source of interesting links.

In the last couple of weeks, in amongst the work anniversaries and humble brags, I’ve found links to the excellent New Yorker piece on ChatGPT and an old but gold post on ‘Why hype technology is killing innovation’.

I remain frustrated with the way in which LinkedIn penalises posts with external links - a topic I wrote about recently - and would love it if they made it easier to view links you’d previously followed. I guess the clue’s in the name (it’s not called LinkedOut).

I’m a sucker for novel visualisations of data and am fascinated by the elusive Venn diagram overlap of the beautiful and the easily understandable.

I was therefore quick to save ‘1 dataset, 100 visualisations’ which, unsurprisingly, has lots of examples which hit one or the other (beautiful or easily understandable) and a few which manage both.

I increasingly try to read things when I encounter them, as my browser Reading Lists rarely get revisited. When I come across a longer read, I add it to my main work ‘To Do’ list in Things, which means a) I’m more likely to actually read it b) I get the micro dopamine hit of checking something off my ‘To Do’ list.

Amongst the many email newsletters I subscribe to and rarely read, a recent addition that reliably gets opened and - at the very least, skimmed - is from Chartr.

In a sea of words, a few charts which each tell a story feels like a great way into topics I wouldn’t otherwise have dug into, such as which countries produce the most gold.

It was this area chart of recorded music industry revenues by format over the last 45 years that persuaded me to subscribe and prompted me to write something about trends.

I love an IRL recommendation for something digital and keep finding myself recommending Prof. Scott Galloway’s No Mercy/No Malice weekly email newsletter to friends in person (typically followed up with a link via WhatsApp).

The blend of topics (tech, the economy, education, modern masculinity) is right up my street, but it’s the richness of the language that makes me keep recommending it; an antidote to the anodyne copy ChatGPT typically produces, which currently seems to be everywhere I look.

Thank you for reading Attention Matters. This post is public so feel free to share it.

Thank you, Dan!

That’s it for this week. Next week, we’ll be back with another creative mind letting us know what they’ve found, shared, subscribed and saved recently. Don’t forget to share this post with friends if you like it, and ask them to subscribe if they haven’t. See you then!