Monday, February 29, 2016

The most difficult business you could run

An excerpt:
Hoping to publicize her new nonprofit, last fall Julie Burkhart called her local NPR affiliate, KMUW in Wichita, about buying a day of sponsorship for $480. Station manager Debra Fraser decided immediately that KMUW wouldn’t allow it. “I didn’t want to upset the apple cart,” Fraser says. 
The response wasn’t new to Burkhart. In April 2013 she had reopened and renamed Women’s Health Care Services, where her former employer and mentor, Dr. George Tiller, provided abortions from the 1970s until 2009, when he was shot in the head and killed while ushering at his church. Today, South Wind Women’s Center offers abortion and OB-GYN services as well as transgender care such as hormone therapy. Burkhart hopes to install a birthing center. In the basement, Trust Women, the center’s umbrella nonprofit, runs a political action committee, continuing the advocacy Tiller began in the 1980s.
Read more in Bloomberg News.

Decoding Harvard’s Computer Science Gender Gap

Read more in the Crimson.

At Harvey Mudd College, the Ratio of Women in Computer Science Increased from 10% to 40% in 5 Years

"Here's how we did it." Read Maria Klawe's post in Medium.

Which Type of Exercise Is Best for the Brain?

Read more in the NYT.

Thanks, +Melody Wang 

Why Are White Death Rates Rising?

Read more in the NYT.

Thanks, +Zuhair Khan 

8 Classic storytelling techniques for engaging presentations

Read more in Sparkol.

Thanks, +Erik Trautman 

Equality in Marriages Grows, and So Does Class Divide

Read more in the NYT.

Thanks, Dad

What Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team

Curious about what Google found? Read more in the NYT. Thanks Damola and Elliot

What Women Find in Friends That They May Not Get From Love

Read more in the NYT.

Make Your Life Better by Saying Thank You in These 7 Situations

Excellent tips on when to say "Thank You":
1. When you’re receiving a compliment. Example: “Your dress looks great.”
Instead of: “Oh, this old thing? I’ve had it for years.”
Try saying: “Thank you. I’m glad you like it.”
Read more in James Clear.

Lupita Nyong’o and Trevor Noah, and Their Meaningful Roles

TN [Trevor Noah]:
Especially when people feel attacked. People are always asking me, “Why aren’t you angry?” Because I grew up in a world where being an angry black person got you nowhere. It got you shot or arrested. There’s a place for anger, but you can get so much further with diplomacy and empathy. You have to feel for the other person, even if you think they’re completely wrong. And they think the same about you.
Read more in the NYT. Thanks, +Natalie Rothfels

Meditation and creativity: should we believe the hype?

David Lynch thinks so.

I dared two expert hackers to destroy my life. Here’s what happened.


Google's DeepMind Forms Health Unit to Build Medical Software

Read more in Bloomberg.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

How Mattermark Teamed Up With Bloomberg Beta to Predict Who Will Start Companies Next

A few surprising stats:
  • 38% of venture-backed founders are over 40 years old
  • Only 15% of venture-backed founders have a Computer Science degree
  • Management consultants are more than 2x more likely to be venture-backed founders than engineers
  • 43% of venture backed founders worked at a venture-backed company immediately before founding
  • Two thirds of venture-backed founders were not in a senior leadership position prior to founding
  • Contrary to conventional wisdom, being “stuck” in the same company or position for a long time (even a decade) does not diminish your likelihood of becoming a founder

 Read more in Mattermark.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

21 things that make a girl say "f*ck"

21 Things That Make Girls Say "FUCK"

Posted by SOML on Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Bahaha, so true.

Why Women Smile at Men Who Sexually Harass Us

"On being nice in the pursuit of getting home safe."

Read more in Medium.

HBS Entrepreneurs Founded the Most Startup Unicorns of Any MBA Program

38 unicorns, or 1 in 4 (24%), have at least one MBA founder.

Read more in NextView.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Naval Ravikant on habits, present state awareness and light reading

An excerpt:
When it comes to motivation, Naval’s advises using public accountability to shame you into achieving your goals. Put simply, you identify a goal, tell people you’ve achieved it and then use that as your incentive to keep you on the straight and narrow.  Interestingly, this contrasts with Derek Sivers’ approach of keeping your goals to yourself (discussed here). Sivers argues that you don’t want to reward your brain with the undeserved dopamine hit it gets from telling people about the awesome things you’re doing. 
You could argue that the distinction lies in the use of language, and specifically the tense. Saying “I have quit smoking” is a definitive statement. I can see why publicly announcing this would have the effect of shaming you to stay on the straight and narrow, as Naval argues. But saying “I will quit smoking” might give you the good feeling without any of the effort, thus disinclining you to follow through. That is the Sivers argument.
Read more in a World Beyond Work.

Thanks, +Caitlin Strandberg 

How People Learn to Become Resilient

An excerpt:
From a young age, resilient children tended to “meet the world on their own terms.” They were autonomous and independent, would seek out new experiences, and had a “positive social orientation.” “Though not especially gifted, these children used whatever skills they had effectively,” Werner wrote. Perhaps most importantly, the resilient children had what psychologists call an “internal locus of control”: they believed that they, and not their circumstances, affected their achievements. The resilient children saw themselves as the orchestrators of their own fates.
Read more in the New Yorker.

Thanks, +Caitlin Strandberg 

The Shut-In Economy

A few excerpts:
The errands being served up by the on-demand economy — cooking, cleaning, laundry, groceries, runs to the post office — all were all once, and in many places still are, the jobs of stay-at-home mothers. Even now, when women outnumber men in the formal workplace, they continue to bear the brunt of that invisible domestic work, often for many, many hours a week. So women — those who can afford it, at least — have the most to win from passing that load on to somebody else. 
...As income inequality increases, the shut-in model is tailor-made for the new polarized extremes. 
... After all, either you’re behind the door, receiving your dinner in the tower. Or you’re like the food delivery guy who, while checking in with the concierge, said, “This is my dream place to live.” He’s the opposite of a shut-in. He’s stuck outside, hustling.
Read more in Medium.

Thanks, +Julia French 

Who Is A VC?

Looks like some of the rhetoric in the Valley don't match the backgrounds of firm partners:

Wish these charts were matched to performance of the VC fund.

Read more in TechCrunch.

Venture Investors Prefer Funding Handsome Men

Studies by Alison Wood Brooks and colleagues reveal that investors prefer pitches from male entrepreneurs over those from female entrepreneurs, even when the content of the pitches is identical. And handsome men fare best of all.

Read more in Harvard and in MIT.

The remarkably different answers men and women give when asked who's the smartest in the class

An excerpt:
Anthropologist Dan Grunspan was studying the habits of undergraduates when he noticed a persistent trend: Male students assumed their male classmates knew more about course material than female students — even if the young women earned better grades.
Read more in the Washington Post.

Robert Waldinger's TED Talk // What Makes a Good Life? Lessons from the Longest Study on Happiness

And here's an old (2009) long-form post on this in the Atlantic. It's one of my all-time favorites.

Thanks, +Jacquelyn Kung and Obi

Virtual reality could be a solution to sexism in tech

Read more in Quartz.

Half the world to be short-sighted by 2050

"Half the world's population (nearly 5 billion) will be short-sighted (myopic) by 2050, with up to one-fifth of them (1 billion) at a significantly increased risk of blindness if current trends continue, says a new study."

Read more in ScienceDaily and support VisionSpring.

A 19-year-old made a free robot lawyer that has appealed $3 million in parking tickets

Read more in BI.

Software Detects CEO Emotions, Predicts Financial Performance

Read more in the WSJ.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Gender Bias in Open Source?

A few excerpts:

  • 78.6 percent of women's pull requests were actually accepted and merged into the code, while only 74.4 percent of men's pull requests were
  • When a woman offered a pull request on an open source project where she was an outsider—in other words, where none of the project leads knew her—her contributions were far less likely to be accepted than ones from outsider men. 
  • When a woman's gender wasn't obvious from her Github profile, her patch would be accepted more often than a patch from a man; but when a woman's gender was clear, her patches were less likely to be accepted by men.

Read more in ars technica.

Thanks, +Daniel Romero 

"America's constitutional democracy is going to collapse."

Read Matthew Yglesias's post in Vox.

Thanks, +Zuhair Khan 

What Does Music Do to Us When We Listen Together? Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin Helps Sonos Find Out: Q&A

An excerpt:
The results claim that 71 percent of households with communal music listening see kids helping with cleaning (versus 38 percent without music), 59 percent of people reported finding others more attractive if they play music they themselves like, and couples reported having twice as much sex.
Read more in Billboard.

Be My Financially Compatible Valentine

Credit scores prove good locator of lasting love matches. Read more in the WSJ.

Thanks, +Tom Janssens 

Sunday, February 7, 2016

The Age of Organized Spontaneity

"Spontaneity creates bonds and adds to romance; apps for last-minute and same-day reservations." An excerpt:
“The trick is not to have a plan but have the plan unfold,” Dr. Slingerland says of an ideal evening. “It’s the way a great dinner party feels.” This involves dialing down the parts of your brain which plan, primarily the prefrontal cortex, and which humans also use to lie. Once that part of your brain is immobilized, you become spontaneous and people will find you more trustworthy. This instinct to trust spontaneous people applies both to people we know, like our spouse, and ones we don’t, like politicians.
Read more in the WSJ.

Thanks, +Katherine Stiner 

Real Compassion in College Admissions

Read more in the NYT.

Thanks, Dad

Carlos Andrés Gómez - "If a Princess Tries to Kidnap Your Daughter"

Thanks, +Elizabeth Slavitt 

"We Have a Serious Problem"

A piece of satire about Trump's campaign, that strangely doesn't feel like satire at all :)

Read more in NY Magazine.

Thanks, +Leila Kutler 

Audi R8 Superbowl Commercial – Commander

Friday, February 5, 2016

Care from lawyers turned therapists

I see this happening in many highly-educated professions:
A common problem Mr Levin, 68, sees among his lawyer clients is what he labels the “curse of unlimited potential”. These are people who have been told they are bright and feel they must live up to their potential. “The curse is it’s unlimited and it can never be fulfilled.”
A former partner at a “magic circle” firm in the City, who is retraining as a psychoanalyst at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, says lawyers can become divorced from their emotions. “On the one hand you have everything and feel nothing.” In the end, she felt the job was inessential yet “vastly overpaid”. 
Anxiety can run high on the topic of compensation, particularly when it comes to bonuses, says Mr Levin. “It’s not about the money,” he insists. “Most would feel better if they were earning half a million dollars and everyone around them earned the same or less, than if they had $1m and everyone else was on $1.6m.” 
The money, he says, is about validation, particularly important in a
workplace where few people receive thanks from clients, colleagues or their superiors.
Read more in the FT.

Thanks, +Zuhair Khan 

Puzzle: Are You Smarter Than 61,139 Other New York Times Readers?

Do you know the answer to the two-thirds game? Test your skills here.

NFL players doing their daughters' hair is my favorite superbowl ad

See more of the spots in the Thrillist.

Thanks, +Claire Richard 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Cloudera's Jeff Hammerbacher on the ugly underbelly of Silicon Valley's startup culture

This video is absurdly sweet. Admire how he talks about his partnership with his wife, Halle, founder of RockHealth, and what she goes through as a woman in tech.

Read more in Pando Daily.

Death, Redesigned

A legendary design firm, a corporate executive, and a Buddhist-hospice director take on the end of life.

Read more in the California Sunday Magazine.

Thanks, +Elaine Choi 

Appalachian Miners Are Learning to Code

The demand is huge:
Bit Source got started in 2014, when Justice and Parrish bought an old brick Coca Cola bottling plant on Pikeville’s northern edge. Last winter, they began broadcasting radio ads and posting flyers across Appalachia, seeking unemployed coal workers interested in becoming computer programmers.  
Justice said he expected 50 applications. He wound up with 950.
Read more in Bloomberg.

Thanks, +John Griffin 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Millennials Are Starting to Change the Stock Market

"Experiences trump stuff for generation born between 1980-2000." An excerpt:
A survey by market-research firm Harris Poll and Eventbrite Inc., an online marketplace for ticket sales, showed 78 percent of millennials would rather pay for an experience than material goods. That compares with 59 percent for baby boomers. Some 82 percent of millennials said they went to a live event in the past year -- concerts and festivals -- and 72 percent said they plan to increase spending on such outings.
Read more in Bloomberg News.

Thanks, +Zuhair Khan 

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 .