links for 2009-08-11

  • I had become what I wanted to be, done all that I vowed to do — and yet, what did I have? A wife I shared with four others… two other wives whose faces I couldn’t remember… a son who had given up his life for those who had delighted in his dying, two other sons who I did not know… and brothers who could never appreciate the depth of feeling I had for them…
    Evening gave way to the pitch black of night, matching the darkness that swamped my mind, my heart.
  • Advice Number 5: It is never too late to start blogging. Someone was telling me the other day “It’s too late to start a blog in India. The market is saturated.” What I told her was that I thought the exact same thing. Five years ago.
    If there is any problem with the Indian blogosphere even after so many years, it is the lack of variety. Which means there are many stories that are waiting to be told. We want personal insights into Indian law. Into the Indian medical system. Into the life of a railway ticket checker. We want to hear from beyond the 15–35 demographic. We want grandma to tell us how college life was in her time. We want uncle to tell us how he felt when he bought his first fridge.
    Final words. Write about what you are passionate about—-be it wriggling your ears or collecting match boxes. And most most important of all, produce original content.
    Remember once you build it, they will come.
  • No single product in the world is used more than Excel for analytics, not because it’s a good tool for data exploration, analysis, and presentation—it isn’t—but because almost everyone in the world who works with quantitative data has it. Just imagine how much the world would benefit if Excel were more powerful and better designed. I was frustrated and upset when Excel 2007 missed the mark, but now with Excel 2010 trying to assuage our misery with nothing but sparklines, I’m inclined to give up on the product entirely as a tools for data analysis. Fortunately, where Excel has failed, alternative products have emerged that deliver effective and visionary analytical abundance.
  • Abstract: While preparing to film a movie entitled A Night in Casablanca, the Marx brothers received a letter from Warner Bros. threatening legal action if they did not change the film’s title. Warner Bros. deemed the film’s title too similar to their own Casablanca, released almost five years earlier in 1942, with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. In response Groucho Marx dispatched the following letter to the studio’s legal department:
  • Does anyone remember David Thorne? The same David Thorne that drove his bank’s customer service rep to the edge of mental collapse with the “spider as payment email”, strikes again in this hilarious email exchange between him and his landlord:
  • A diadem of corruscating brilliance. Now, 16 lights burn on its facade. It can make your eyes mist – but…. Lights are on in the Taj!
  • David Thorne didn't have the $233.95 to pay an overdue account. So what did he do? What any other budding young genius would do, he submitted a picture of a spider he drew instead. Unfortunately, Jane Gilles, who is clearly a mega-bitch to the nth degree, wouldn't accept it. So what happened next? Hit the jump to find out. But I'll give you a hint: time travel! And also, David's account not getting paid.
  • I think she's learnt a very important lesson there hasn't she?
  • Although the barrier between work and the rest of life has been eroding steadily, it's taken the BlackBerry to shatter it altogether…The way some mourn the loss of wilderness, I grieve the loss of quiet space, free of electronic intrusion and interruption. Bond Girl gives Gary constant access to the world. But more disturbingly, she gives the world constant access to him.
    Entrepreneurial businesses are colicky babies that never stop screaming for their owners' time, energy, and imagination. Their families are in a constant battle for attention. For the entrepreneur, maintaining work-family balance involves managing guilt on both sides. Enter the BlackBerry. It beguiles both the entrepreneur and the family by creating the alluring illusion of freedom. The entrepreneur can be surrounded by family, untethered from the office — but always accessible to work.

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