Four short links: 16 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. EU leaders meet amid austerity debate – (Financial Times) — European leaders arrived in Brussels on Thursday for a summit where the intensifying debate over the austerity-led response to the eurozone crisis was moving to centre stage even though the gathering was not expected to change the EU’s economic policy course.
  2. Dropbox acquires buzzy app Mailbox – In case you haven’t heard, Mailbox is the iOS app that everyone wants to get their grubby little paws on. The hip new e-mail app is an alternative interface for Gmail accounts (yes, it only works with Gmail). People who have used it love the gesture-based interface and the ability to “snooze” messages—this latter feature prompts a pop-up message to remind you to reply at some point in the future, like later in the day, later that night, or over the weekend.
  3. Immigration bill could favor skilled workers over relatives – An influential Republican senator involved in drafting a bipartisan immigration bill wants to lower the number of family members of U.S. citizens allowed to immigrate each year and instead increase the number of highly skilled workers.
  4. America’s Cities Are Innovating for the Future – History has shown, time and again, that from the ashes of economic upheaval come the potential sparks of massive-scale progress. Today is no different. After years of near-catastrophe at worst, and malaise at best, our economy is showing signs of shaking off some cobwebs and moving into a new future.

Four short links: 15 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. Life as a draft – (Execupundit.com) Many projects are never done.
  2. The Art of Graceful Disagreement – Agreeing to something when you don’t fully believe in it is not helping the other person as your heart is not there. That does not mean that things will always go as per your wishes. No, that’s not the point. In fact, as you grow and learn, there will be LOTS of things that you are not aware of.
  3. Textbooks R.I.P.? – (Cultural Offering) As I mentioned earlier, there are lots of OER options populating on the web. Some of them are ready to use without any applications needed. Students and teachers can simply load a website to access the material.”
  4. The Most Terrifying Drone Ever! Run Away! - When I began the day, I promised myself I wasn’t going to write about drones or anti-drone crusader and Guardian blogger Glenn Greenwald or the war on terrorism again, mainly because I covered the topic here last week and several more times elsewhere. But the drone topic continues to be fueled by misinformation and a considerable dose of hysteria.

Four short links: 14 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. 5 Key Practices to Earn Trust – To trust or not to trust is a decision we all make every day. As leaders, we can influence people’s decision to trust not only us, but others in the organization and even the organization itself. Robert Hurley has identified ten specific trust factors in The Decision to Trust. The first three factors are trustor-related: the level of risk tolerance, the trustor’s level of psychological adjustment, and the power position of the trustor.
  2. Why MANY smart people defend themselves aggressively - The question: Have you seen any of your smart people defending them or their actions aggressively? The BIG question: Have YOU defended yourself or your actions aggressively? I was recently at a pitch session where one of the founders gave a sub-optimal pitch and got sub-optimal ratings for his pitch. His first reaction – the judges don’t know the space well enough to judge him. In other words, he was right and the judges were wrong.
  3. The value in gossip at work – I watched a fascinating TEDx talk this weekend and have embedded it below to share. If you’re not enthralled at the start, I encourage you to stick with it. It leads to the conclusion: “Celebrity gossip is the conversation that exposes who we are… a reflection of modern human behaviour and culture. In observing the changing nature of standards and morality, gossip is the play-by-play of our social evolution”
  4. Why schedules help even when they’re wrong – In an HBR article called The Dirty Secret of Project Management, the author claims the secret is no one believes in their schedules. I don’t agree that it’s a secret, but that’s not the point. Forget whether a schedule is ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. Even if a project ends up months behind it probably did several important things.

Four short links: 12 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. Tom Keene Destroys Apple With One Simple Question – Bloomberg anchor, iPhone user, and (not to be rude, but) older gentleman Tom Keene somewhat inadvertently revealed a lot about the changing perceptions around Apple with one simple question. On his show today, he said to Wired writer Steve Levy, “What I see is a generational divide, is that true? Older people use iPhones, younger people use Samsungs.”
  2. 19 Tips For Success From Superachievers – What do superachievers all have in common? Authors Camille Sweeney and Josh Gosfield set out to find the answer with their book, The Art Of Doing: How Superachievers Do What They Do And How They Do It So Well. They interviewed dozens of superachievers from all professions and found some underlying traits that they share.
  3. Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg suddenly in crossfire – (CNN) Sheryl Sandberg is a role model, say her defenders. The chief operating officer of Facebook earned two degrees from Harvard and spent the early part of her career in public service, rising to become chief of staff to Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers during the latter days of the Clinton administration. She helped build Google into a powerhouse; she has led the Facebook team in making the social media site ubiquitous. She’s a mother who cares deeply about work-life balance and has been outspoken about women pulling together.
  4. The Audacity Of Power: The Obama Administration As The Bully – In one of the most blatantly political moves in U.S. history, President Barack Obama, members of his Cabinet and his Senior Advisors have decided to use the vast power of the federal government to bully the American people into giving them even more control.

Four short links: 11 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1.  Yes, the Financial System Is Rigged. Why Shouldn’t You Profit From That Knowledge? – Our system is rigged. Unfair. Hopelessly neglectful of the little guy. All true. But do you really have a better choice? Did you honestly think Washington was going to let it all fail—and for good? After all, who’s backing Fannie Mae (FNMA) and Freddie Mac (FMCC), which are almost single-handedly backing the resurgent mortgage market? Who pumped more than $2 trillion into suppressing interest rates to record lows?
  2. The Best Tweets for Your Money – Twitter has become an increasingly popular way to share news and analysis. But, for the most part, financial advisers were generally hesitant to step into the popular social network—until now. According to FTI Consulting, nearly 40% of financial advisers now tweet to send short messages to their followers. Twitter users increasingly include even those from the wealth advisory sector. Here’s a list of some of the more savvy ones, as compiled by reporters and editors from WSJ.Money
  3. New robots in the workplace: Job creators or job terminators? – BOSTON — At MIT, a management robot is learning to run a factory and give orders to artificial co-workers, and a BakeBot robot is reading recipes, whipping together butter, sugar and flour and putting the cookie mix in the oven. At the University of California at Berkeley, a robot can do laundry and then neatly fold ­T-shirts and towels.
  4. The five biggest lies about entitlement programs – Everybody loves lists. Most of those you see in the papers or online tend toward the inconsequential (The Six Best “Fast & Furious” Movies). So here’s a list with a bit more gravitas: The five biggest lies you’re being told about entitlement programs.

Four short links: 09 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. A New Basis for Copyright — NZ’s most technically-literate judge floats an idea for how copyright might be reimagined in a more useful way for the modern age by considering it in terms of human rights. Perhaps there should be consideration of a new copyright model that recognises content user rights against a backdrop of the right to receive and impart information and a truly balanced approach to information and expression that recognises that ideas expressed are building blocks for new ideas.
  2. Tactical Chat — how the military uses IRC to wage war.
  3. 3D Printed Portraiture: Past, Present, and Future — impressive collection of 3D scans of museum collections of portraiture.
  4. US AIR FORCE WIPES DRONE STRIKE DATA – As scrutiny and debate over the use of remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) by the American military increased last month, the Air Force reversed a policy of sharing the number of airstrikes launched from RPAs in Afghanistan and quietly scrubbed those statistics from previous releases kept on their website.

Four short links: 08 March 2013

An essential reading to inspire your morning
  1. Listening as a Tool to De-escalate Conflicts – Recently, I read this statement: “They keep yelling at me that I’m not listening.” I would love to give credit to the person who said it, but I’ve lost the source. I think I saw it as a tweet in my twitter stream. I’m just not sure of that. In any case, I thought it was funny. Funny? Yes. A good perspective for conflict resolution? No.
  2. Facebook’s Answer To Pay-to-Play: The “Following” Feed – Worried that you might miss an update to Facebook Pages you subscribe to? Or are you concerned that your legions of followers aren’t seeing your shared stories? Either way, Facebook has an answer: its new “Following” feed.
  3. Forget Flow – The Secret to Skill Lies in Discomfort – We as a society have become increasingly obsessed with being “productive,” and it’s not hard to see why: who doesn’t want to get more done each day? The problem is that the content in this hotly discussed topic often revolves around apps and “workhacks.” Downloading the latest productivity software isn’t the way to go, you have to start with what makes your brain tick if you really hope to overcome the barriers that stop you from being productive.
  4. E.U. to Microsoft: Brother, can you spare a dime? – The E.U. came down like a hammer on Microsoft’s head yesterday, fining the software giant a whopping $731 million for failing to provide users of Windows 7 a clear and distinct choice of Web browser. To which Microsoft quietly replied, “Thank you, sirs, may we have another?”