We’ve not done one of these for a while so here goes. Dan Davies’ Lying for Money is an economic history of fraud which emphasises its relationship with the social trust necessary for civilisation. Practices like accounting, auditing, and record-keeping are in some sense technologies that permit us to manufacture artificial trust, and of course…

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This Left Outside post is getting attention, and it’s good: That brings us to the least obvious, but most damaging effect of rating your waitress. Good management is good. Better management can drive big improvements in productivity. And everyone knows how bad it is to have a bad manager, it can be utterly hellish. In…

Read More Star ratings can’t leave you to improve

A lot of people seem to think the Windrush scandal is an argument for national ID cards, and as a result, the Financial Times ran this collection of four short articles on four different experiences. This includes two European ones that are kind of OK, the disastrous Indian Aadhaar project, and one that hasn’t happened…

Read More What’s worse than ID cards? The ID card register without the cards

Here’s something nice, from architect Peter Barber: Council housing which we just finished for London Borough of Enfield… YIPEEE pic.twitter.com/jIWHO5yQn9 — Peter barber (@PpeterPeter) April 19, 2018 Barber’s practice designed the Ordnance Road project for Enfield. Like all architectural practices its website is completely incomprehensible, but I found information at the builders’. Neilcott Group say…

Read More Simple planning

This is the third post in a series. The others are here and here. A really important lesson to take away from the book is about Crow’s relationship with the media. There are several points to remember here. The first one is the importance of realistic expectations. Crow never imagined that the commentariat or the…

Read More Looking back on Bob Crow, 3: Media, and a final thought