My Library

The following are some articles, podcasts, books etc that I’ve recently found interesting. This page shall be dynamically updated with the most recent recommendations stacked up at the top.

May 2021:


An interesting take on the Michelin Star system in the FT.

It is easy to attack Michelin because it won’t engage. It doesn’t really need to justify itself to the media; in fact, it is us who seem to need Michelin more than it needs us. It’s us who like to turn dinner into a competition. We create cooking shows with artificial jeopardy, we lionise our chefs as celebrities with little reference to what they actually cook. It is we, the media, who demand a convenient league system. Yet the critics of Michelin still have one or two very good points.

FT Article

Seeing is believing. To some extent, that’s true, of course: Our eyes allow us to see what’s around us, helping us navigate our world.

But it turns out sight is much more complicated than that, according to the new book Perception: How Our Bodies Shape Our Minds, by University of Virginia psychologist Dennis Proffitt and Drake Baer. The central concept of the book is as follows:

What we perceive in any given moment is not only determined by sensory input, but by our personal physical abilities, energy levels, feelings, social identities, and more.

This can have very interesting implications for marketing. (more here)

April 2021:


Source: Austin Kleon

7 Sources of competitive advantage: (Hamilton Helmer)


One of my most favorite book/comic/work of art is Lynda Barry’sWhat It Is‘. Quoting the wikipedia page:

What It Is (2008) is a graphic novel that is part memoir, part collage and part workbook, in which Barry instructs her readers in methods to open up their own creativity; it won the comics industry’s 2009 Eisner Award for Best Reality-Based Work.


If you have read the book, imagine how would it feel if you had a chance to sit through her class. Luckily now, I don’t need to imagine that.

Check out this drawing workshop with Lynda Barry – an unlisted YT link! (H/T Austin Kleon)

March 2021:


Fascinated about Crypto / NFTs? Then you might have also heard of Crypto’s carbon footprint. Else you should check out this site.

ARTICLE: The curious appeal of Birkenstocks

A wearer of Birkenstocks is saying, “I’m more concerned about comfort than looking good” — but isn’t showing off about not showing off. They are sincere to just the right degree. A little bit of ugliness turns out to go a long way.

The question to ask about Birkenstocks, then, is not whether they look good, but why they are one of the emblematic objects of our era. What to make of our obsession with projecting indifference to what others think? Why is the image of comfort — comfort as something others see us enjoying — so important to us?

Source: Financial Times

Feb 2021:


The TL;DR..


It’s signature Chamath as always, which means it makes for a very thought provoking listen. But the concept that stuck with me is his insight around the distinction between labour and capital that he speaks about. Quoting from the podcast..

So if I were to break down the simple key insight, which is going to sound very superficial to somebody that’s financially savvy like you, is that it took me a long time to understand the difference between labor and capital. If I talked to my friends and I’ve been lucky enough now to meet a lot of famous people’s, if you will, athletes, entertainers, especially minorities like me, the single biggest thing is that we confuse being labor and capital all the time. If you’re getting paid $2 or $3 million a year, you think you’ve made it, you haven’t made it. There’s somebody above you that’s making 20 or $200 million a year. Their capital we’re labor, when I made a lot of money at a bank, or when I was an employee at Facebook, I was well-compensated, labor.

The biggest transition is one of philosophy, which is for us to understand that that dichotomy exists. And then to ask the question, how does a person who makes their money as labor also start to make money in the form of capital as an owner. And that’s a mental shift. It’s this idea of understanding that you can own a piece of a great business, even if you own one share to not look down disparagingly at yourself because of that. It’s to understand that if you’re an owner, it’s that Buffett quote, it’s not timing the market. It’s time in market. That’s what owners do. They own pieces of things forever.

And I think that it’s an enormous misunderstanding of the poor. It’s an enormous misunderstanding amongst minorities. And I think that the money class, the biggest edge that they have is that very, very simple understanding about the difference between labor and capital. I think the key to peace and prosperity today, as I see the problems is to close the inequality gap and to close the inequality gap is to show people everyday normal people, how they can earn and save and invest and be a part of capital, not just be a part of labor.


I admire (and am always inspired by) Patrick’s work on ‘Invest like the best’. It has been one of my most favourite podcasts for a while. And I still can’t believe that this is all available for anyone free of cost! Colossus – his new project, takes his initiative to a whole new level. It makes every single podcast episode indexed and searchable. Read more about the project here.

Have a recommendation around books, podcasts, blogs, articles, art, music, films etc for me or the larger community of BRANDEDNOISE readers? Please use the form below. If it resonates, I shall post it above and attribute the recommendation to you.

Thanks in advance!