Welcome to onfocus—a weblog by Paul Bausch where I post recommended links, my photos, and occasional thoughts. Subscribe here if you like RSS.
Vox Vox
image from Vox
I’m on board with this plan. Take a look if you haven’t seen it yet. I’m even more on board with the widespread online mocking of this type of reaction to it: Elizabeth Warren's plan to cancel student loan debt would be a slap in the face to all those who struggled to pay off their loans. My favorite response from @petridishes: "this plan to stop slapping people in the face is a slap in the face to all those who were slapped in the face."
Enviro-History Enviro-History
image from Enviro-History
You might want to celebrate this Earth Day by revisiting Blackened by Metallica. When I was listening to this in junior high I was only vaguely aware it was about nuclear winter if I thought about it all. I was mostly interested in the guitar work. Maybe I grew up to care about the environment because of the heavy metal I listed to?
Freakonomics
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“We understand prices. But in a community, many of these transactions are not priced. You may do more favors than you get. You may not even get greater status as a result of something you do.”
This Freakonomics Radio interview with economist Raghuram Rajan is fantastic. He talks about the value of communities and the difficulty economists have quantifying their value. Local communities are also one of the primary ways we find meaning in our personal lives. There's a lot to think about there.
the-camera-in-the-mirror.tumblr.com the-camera-in-the-mirror.tumblr.com
Google Maps has had indoor street view for seven or eight years now. This site collects images of the Google Maps robot caught in the mirrors of those interiors. The juxtaposition of lavish preserved 18th century decor with the utilitarian machine eye feels like something out of a Kubrik movie. And the lack of humans in most pictures makes it look like a post-depopulation survey.
washingtonpost.com washingtonpost.com
image from washingtonpost.com
There are many reasons D&D is having a cultural moment and this article mentions a few. I think the game design decision to use more gender inclusive language and imagery in the 5th edition has been a big part of it.

Boys in Bands

Dear Internet, this song by Silver Sphere has been stuck in my head since I heard it. My only theory is that I'm the only person who has heard this and must alone carry the earworm burdon. By sharing it here I'm hoping to move on. Thanks for your attention. I'm sorry.

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guitars
ted.com ted.com
image from ted.com
“Handmaidens to authoritarianism.”
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Haystack Rock
design.peteforamerica.com design.peteforamerica.com
image from design.peteforamerica.com
I’m impressed with these campaign brand guidelines which are fairly complex but conveyed clearly. The font is strong—I’m happy dems have moved away from serif fonts. Don’t miss the hand lettered state names.

I also enjoyed this review of the brand at Brand New: Water Under the Bridge.
nytimes.com nytimes.com
image from nytimes.com
Thanks a lot gray lady, you calling D&D cool officially makes it uncool! aw, who am I kidding—it was never cool and I wouldn’t have it any other way. *ruffles D&D’s hair*
Outside Online Outside Online
image from Outside Online
Short answer: yes, some clever public awareness campaigns around responsible tagging help. Sometimes not sharing a thing we love is the best way to love it. See also the cautionary tale of The Broccoli Tree.
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