Tom MacWright


So I guess the biggest news is that I’m starting to work on Placemark as a real product and a real company. Back to the world of maps, to handle some unfinished business: making map data editing good. It’s been a lot of fun to work on Placemark so far. I’ve written up some notes on the Placemark blog, and have been posting teasers on the Placemark Twitter account, almost daily.

Tree Equity Score

One project I was involved in with consulting has launched: the Tree Equity Score website for American Forests, with Iced Coffee Please. I think it’s pretty interesting, and it just happened to launch in the middle of a historic heat wave that is killing people and exposing how poor places in cities are deprived of funding, planning, and staffing for urban tree canopy.

Tyler the Creator’s Call Me If You Get Lost has been on repeat. Like a lot of his work, it’s endlessly creative and charismatic. The accompanying videos are worth a watch too.

And Metric’s Lost Kitten, which is their classic sort of disco-adjacent earworm.

Let’s see, some themes.

Like last month’s mention of Nick Magiulli’s explainer about millenial wealth, here’s an interesting look at SATs and how they might not be as useless as they’re made out to be. As someone lucky enough to go to a good high school and get some SAT prep, I both benefited from the SAT and always thought it was useless - that it didn’t predict college performance or at least was mostly a proxy for wealth. It seems like that is less true than I thought?

This is not a narrative of empowerment rather a shaming one. It is a narrative that will only resonate with men who are responsible for self-imposing climate doom and alienates those of us who feel powerless to name and address the problem: colonialism and capitalism.

Shayna Robinson on nature, climate, and what is natural. Nature in the midst of people, like Central Park surrounded by skyscrapers or the unremarkable London Planetrees and sycamores and ginkos on city streets, is what interests me most, right now, and not just because I just spent a lot of time looking at maps of trees in cities.

I read Sarah K Mock’s new book about farms in June: I highly recommend it. And I just finished my first Bukowski, Ham on Rye, which was also pretty great.

July 1, 2021  @tmcw