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Josh Nicholas

Josh Nicholas

Undrafted in life

The NBA Finals featured two undrafted, unlikely standouts in Alex Caruso and Duncan Robinson. Anthony Davis is No. 1 on ESPN’s list of top free agents, but Davis leaving the Lakers is about as likely as LeBron James retiring to open a taco stand. The more surprising players were the ones who might actually change teams: VanVleet at No. 2 and Detroit Pistons forward Christian Wood at No. 3. They, too, were undrafted.
“I carry that with me every day,” VanVleet said.

I feel this. I don't think you can quantify how important that chip on your shoulder is later on. There's no better motivation.

From a piece on Fred VanVleet, an undrafted NBA player who we're all watching right now.

Ecosystem services

The Indian islands, which are located off the coast of West Bengal, plunge into the Bay of Bengal like dozens of bright green fingers, taking their color from the sundari, as the dominant local species of mangrove is known. The trees thrive in the delta’s slushy mud flats and are the first line of defense against storms. Because they have a dense network of roots that can survive both above and below the waterline, the mangroves reduce wave force and capture sediments. But they are under constant threat from illegal logging. They are also vulnerable to crown death, a disease that has already killed millions of mangroves.
The mangroves are “mobile,” says Susmita Dasgupta, an economist at the World Bank: they move back and forth to avoid getting overwhelmed by the water. But dense human settlements have reduced the amount of free space available to them.
The triple whammy—deforestation, crown death, and overpopulation—is proving too much for the trees. Because they’re an essential component of the Sundarbans, any change to them automatically affects people with forest-based livelihoods—fishers, crab and honey collectors, and those who rely on the forest for fodder and fuel.

Why do humans seem to forget we're just one part of a complex system? From a horrific story about climate change migrants in India.

Didn't realise the Celtics needed so much

Been playing with heatmaps today. Got a inspired by the NBA draft and decided to scrape basic team stats from last season. Didn't realise the Celtics weren't up there on really any of the basic metrics last year.

The Celtics drafted shooting but seems like they could use a little bit of everything.

Decolonise knowledge

As Paddy and I were walking the beautiful coastline north of Broome, he would point out things, tell stories, call out to ancestors, and sing songs that belonged to particular places. The songs were important because they were inspirational (in the original Latin sense of a truth being breathed into someone). Their significance was, and is, multiple: they are handed down from ancestors; they tie human and nonhuman worlds together and animate those connections; they are mnemonic and practical, reminding people, for instance, that this is the place of yarrinyarri, the bush onion.
But how on Earth does knowledge transfer work without a concept of mind? Understanding, for Paddy, was ‘hearing’ and that was the word he used (as in, ‘that man can’t hear’), equivalent to the French entendre, which also embraces the meanings of hearing and understanding. When children accompanied us on our walks, I also saw a certain experiential pedagogy in place. Children were not encouraged to ask lots of questions: respect for elders seemed to entail not bothering them too much. These kids were learning to pay attention and thus acquire know-how, which I like to define as practical knowledge-based skills, rather than ‘pure’ knowledge. It’s simply the difference between being told how to point out were South is, and walking outside and showing someone techniques for getting that orientation.

Brilliant piece on Indigenous knowledge.