Tuesday, November 29, 2011

10 Things 90s Kids Will Have To Explain To Their Children

"While most things we experienced as tots in that headiest of eras seems pretty self-explanatory (plaid was everywhere, Leonardo DiCaprio was the molten ball of light around which the solar system turned, and there was no color too bright for your sweatpants) there are some things that will be a bit harder to explain. Here, a primer for when your future children want to know what the hell you were doing with your boxy, multicolored electronics."

More on the Thought Catalog. (Thanks, Caro!)

25 And Over

A fun, but sobering list, for those of us reaching... or past the age of 25:
...#14. Have something to talk about besides college or your job. College is over. The war stories have their amusements, but not over and over and not at every gathering. Get a library card, go to the movies, participate in the world. Working is not living. Be interested so that you can be interesting.
Read more in the Tomato Nation. (Thanks, Lucy)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Entrepreneurial Generation

It's SO good but unnerving! I bet it will describe a lot of your life and your friends. Read the NYT article. (Thanks, Jules!)

Generation Jobless: Students Pick Easier Majors Despite Less Pay

For today's college graduates, the message is clear: If you want a job, the best thing you can do is build a career in rigorous disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math. Read the article in the WSJ. (Thanks, Tom!)

Project Syndicate

Project Syndicate is an international not-for-profit newspaper syndicate and association of newspapers. It distributes commentaries and analysis ("opinion pieces") by experts, activists, Nobel laureates, statesmen, economists, political thinkers, business leaders and academics to its member publications, and encourages networking among its members.

Thanks, John!

Our Reckless Meritocracy

Ross Douthat writes an NYT Op-Ed piece about the American view of meritocracy -- if you keep working hard and have good values you can rise to the top. But what happens when good values become hazy?
Thanks, Joyce!

Why Aren’t There More Female Entrepreneurs?

This blog post was written by Mark Suster in FastCompany.

Can’t buy me love: Study shows materialistic couples have more money and more problems

"Couples where both spouses are materialistic were worse off on nearly every measure we looked at,” says Jason Carroll, a BYU professor of family life and lead author of the study. “There is a pervasive pattern in the data of eroding communication, poor conflict resolution and low responsiveness to each other."

Read more in the WSJ. (Thanks, Tom)

The Fraying of a Nation's Decency

Ever wonder how the Amazon boxes reach your house so quickly? Read a controversial story in the NYT.

Living like the other half

"Three weeks ago, two city-bred, upper-class aspiring entrepreneurs from Bangalore embarked on a mission: learn more about India, by subsisting for a month on what the average Indian does – just 100 rupees ($2.04) a day." Read the full NYT story. (Thanks, Claire)

The BlackBerry outage last month made everybody safer

Don't text and drive: the multi-day BlackBerry texting system outage has been linked to a significant reduction in accidents in some of the affected areas. Read the Discovery Post.

Rules of The Game

“The best swordsman does not fear the second best, he fears the worst since there’s no telling what that idiot is going to do.” Read more in the Freakonomics blog.

Beltway Earnings Make U.S. Capital Richer Than Silicon Valley

A statistic that helps a lot of things make sense: "Federal employees whose compensation averages more than $126,000 and the nation’s greatest concentration of lawyers helped Washington edge out San Jose as the wealthiest U.S. metropolitan area, government data show.

The U.S. capital has swapped top spots with Silicon Valley, according to recent Census Bureau figures, with the typical household in the Washington metro area earning $84,523 last year. The national median income for 2010 was $50,046."

Read more in Bloomberg. (Thanks, Tom)

Revealed – the capitalist network that runs the world

"As protests against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have confirmed the protesters' worst fears. An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.

The study's assumptions have attracted some criticism, but complex systems analysts contacted by New Scientist say it is a unique effort to untangle control in the global economy. Pushing the analysis further, they say, could help to identify ways of making global capitalism more stable..."

Read more in the New Scientist. (Thanks, Joyce!)

The Jensen Family Get a Huge Surprise

Something to make you smile. I can't embed the YouTube video, but you can check it out here.

(Thanks, Claire)

A Sister’s Eulogy for Steve Jobs

Check out Mona Simpson's eulogy for Steve Jobs in the NYT. (Thanks, Julia)

Land of the wasted talent

"Japanese firms face a demographic catastrophe. The solution is to treat women better." A couple surprising statistics:
Nearly half of Japanese university graduates are female but only 67% of these women have jobs, many of which are part-time or involve serving tea. Japanese women with degrees are much more likely than Americans (74% to 31%) to quit their jobs voluntarily. Whereas most Western women who take time off do so to look after children, Japanese women are more likely to say that the strongest push came from employers who do not value them. A startling 49% of highly educated Japanese women who quit do so because they feel their careers have stalled.
Read the Economist article. (Thanks, Tom)

The Hillary Moment

"President Obama can't win by running a constructive campaign, and he won't be able to govern if he does win a second term." Read the WSJ argument. (Thanks, Tom)


Tired of waiting on hold? Use the FastCustomer app and have the company call you when the hold time is up! Best. tool. ever. (Thanks, Jules)

Where All Work Is Created Equal

In Manhattan, Zu Dong taught calligraphy to members of the Visiting Nurse Service of New York’s Community Connections TimeBank, which lets people exchange services.
(Thanks, Julia)

Why Do Harvard Kids Head to Wall Street?

There have been a lot of theories floating around as Occupy Wall Street becomes bigger. Check out James Kwak's perspective. And here are some thoughts complied by DealBook.

(Thanks, Julia)

What if the Secret to Success Is Failure?

I couldn't agree more! So often we are coddled and protected from failure. Check out the NYT article.

Reflections on Army Life

Liz McNally, a former Army captain and current Engagement Manager at McKinsey, reflects on her life in the military in 85 Broads. She's an inspiring leader.

The Surge of Ideas

General David H. Petraeus gave a speech when accepting the AEI award on the state of our milary. Read the full speech here.

(Learn more about the speech writer Liz McNally.)

TED Talk: Sheryl WuDunn's our century's greatest injustice

Thanks, Claire

TED Talk: Barry Schwartz on our loss of wisdom

Thanks, Lucy!

TED Talk: Barry Schwartz on the paradox of choice

Thanks, Lucy!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

High Bank Fees Give Wal-Mart a Money Aisle

Americans say they are fed up with banks. They are protesting on Wall Street and raising a ruckus over outsize fees. Now there is a surprising beneficiary: Wal-Mart. Read the NYT article.

All the Single Ladies

Recent years have seen an explosion of male joblessness and a steep decline in men’s life prospects that have disrupted the “romantic market” in ways that narrow a marriage-minded woman’s options: increasingly, her choice is between deadbeats (whose numbers are rising) and playboys (whose power is growing).

But this strange state of affairs also presents an opportunity: as the economy evolves, it’s time to embrace new ideas about romance and family—and to acknowledge the end of “traditional” marriage as society’s highest ideal. Read more in the Atlantic. (Thanks, Scott)

Super cute: boy calls 911 for help with math

(Thanks, Chris!)

3 Ways to Think Like an Innovator

HBR's Management Tip of the Day: Most people struggle to do what innovators excel at: connecting the unconnected. Here are three ways to get in the habit of making new associations:

  • Just do it. Force associations across different ideas when they don't come naturally. Ask yourself: What else could this idea be connected to?

  • Shake it up. When associations don't emerge, try forcing them to surface. Put seemingly unrelated ideas or words together and see what comes to mind. The creative combinations may spark a new idea.

  • Repeat. Research shows that if you practice associational thinking long enough, the task will energize you rather than exhaust you.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The best obnoxious responses to misspellings on Facebook

Check out more at HappyPlace. (Thanks Alessia)

Halloween costume ... gaping hole in torso


(Thanks, Mike)

Financial Inclusion Proves both Worthy and Profitable

"Mobile technologies continue to play a huge part in the effort to extending banking services to previously 'unbanked' communities and the role of mobile technologies in doing so.

"New technologies have allowed banks in Africa, Brazil, and India to reach out to remote rural populations without easy access to a bank branch. But for Ed Cutrell, head of the technology for emerging markets team at Microsoft Research India in Bangalore, inexperienced customers need a great deal of help and education to use these services effectively.

"Better financial education would help the poor and decrease their reliance on costly, informal alternatives - such as credit at usurious rates from local shopkeepers. It might also reduce their vulnerability to being mis-sold financial services that they do not need."

Read more in the Financial Times.

The Daughter Also Rises

"The emerging world is home to many self-made businesswomen who have risen from low-level jobs to leadership positions and personal fortunes. Seven of the fourteen women identified on Forbes magazine's list of self-made billionaires are Chinese. Many firms in emerging markets do a better job of promoting women than their Western rivals, some surveys suggest.

"In China, 32 percent of senior managers are female, compared with 23 percent in America and 19 percent in Britain. In India, 11 percent of chief executives of large companies are female, compared with 3 percent of Fortune 500 bosses in America and 3 percent of FTSE 100 bosses in Britain.

"Turkey and Brazil come third and joint fourth (behind Finland and Norway) in the World Economic Forum's ranking of countries by the proportion of CEOs who are women. In Brazil, 11 percent of chief executives and 30 percent of senior executives are women.

"Wise firms focus on the two biggest problems for working women in emerging markets: looking after their aging parents, which is typically more of a problem than child care, and commuting."

Read the rest in the Economist.

No, 9/11 Did Not Change the World

"Just about everything has changed since the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington DC 10 years ago, writes Philip Stephens. The contours of the geopolitical and economic landscapes have been redrawn. The curious thing is how little the changes owe to 9/11.

"Osama bin Laden grabbed a decade's worth of headlines, but the future was being written in Beijing, Delhi, Rio and beyond. The world has indeed been turned upside down, but Afghanistan, Iraq and the badlands of Waziristan have been a smokescreen, obscuring the bigger story of the past decade.

"The changes that have mattered have been in the rising states of Asia and Latin America. Ten years on, the strategic challenge to the US comes from the rapid reallocation of power. The global order no longer belongs to the west."

Read the full article in the FT.

An Immune System Trained to Kill Cancer

LinkIt sounds like science fiction -- to train a body to kill off all the cancer cells and start over, but some researchers have seemingly been able to create this effect. Inspiring story in the NYT research section. (Thanks Julia!)

Do You Suffer From Decision Fatigue?

I do!

... "Three men doing time in Israeli prisons recently appeared before a parole board consisting of a judge, a criminologist and a social worker. The three prisoners had completed at least two-thirds of their sentences, but the parole board granted freedom to only one of them." Guess which one in the NYT article.

Neil Pasricha: The 3 A's of awesome

You know I love the 1000 Awesome Things website. Here is the founder's TED talk. Just as good!

(Thanks, Gloria)

Do Happier People Work Harder?

Find the answer in the NYT.

This might be the cutest thing I have seen all week

And it gets even cuter when she met Nicki...

(Thanks, Jillian!)

Why Women Aren’t C.E.O.s, According to Women Who Almost Were

"It’s not a pipeline problem. It’s about loneliness, competition and deeply rooted barriers." Read more in the NYT .