by Tim Van Damme

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Give Me Something To Read

I don’t like reading the news. It gets me in a bad mood, and nothing seems objective anymore. It seems that newspapers no longer care about facts and instead focus on eyeballs and getting the news out before anyone else does. But I like to read.

I used to exclusively read books about HTML, CSS, interaction design, and all that jazz. Anything that’d make me better at my job. But at one point I realized that there was a whole world of interesting subjects out there I was missing out on so I moved on to non-fiction. I read the biographies of Richard Branson and George Carlin (and am currently digging through Steve Jobs’), a book about starting a business by Zappos’ Tony Hsieh and the book on which that movie with Leonardo DiCaprio was based (the book is 10 times better).

But my Instapaper feed was still filled with technical stuff, mostly opinionated blogposts by angry and/or unhappy people, so I decided to make a new rule: Read all the technical, industry related stuff in the browser or close the tab and move on.

Thanks to Give Me Something To Read, my Instapaper queue is now filled with stuff I would otherwise never have found out about. I’ve read about how Putin rigged voting in Russia, the horrifying story of what happened aboard Air France 447, real estate scams in Vegas, and can’t wait to dig through everything else still queued up.

I’m now more in touch with what’s happening in the world through thoughtful articles that are written after the facts, and strangely feel a lot more inspired to design.

Living inside a comfort zone is dangerous, and turns you into an uninteresting human being fed by other people’s opinions. Broaden the topics of things you read and learn how to have your own opinion.