Oh, Poetic Bacon

Nick Offerman pretty much sums up my feeling on bacon. I’m also posting this because we need to spread the word about the end of the world i.e. the upcoming global bacon shortage that will ruin lives and the global economy.

“Before I know it, it’s been 3 days.” Amen.

Epic LEGO Ball Sorting Contraption

I absolutely loved this. Made me want to go and build something. Enjoy.

The Business of Wall Street

I have plenty of thoughts on the financial crisis that happened in 2008, from regulators falling asleep at the wheel, bankers doing what they do best and exploiting a market with no regard for the consequences, and people thinking they can spend when they really did not have the money.

That being said, Mark Cuban’s recent post about Wall Street’s goals is spot on. While I think he is a bit optimistic in that I feel we are somewhat beyond the point of reigning in the bulls, I do believe it’s something we need to be discussing on a national stage in the country.

Sadly I don’t feel many people outside of the industry really understand the implications and basic foundation of high frequency trading platforms, so I am not sure how fruitful that national conversation will be without it becoming overly political. Still, better to have the conversation than not. It’s time we took a good hard look at what the market should do for the country.

The New Industrial Revolution & The Maker Movement

I know a lot has been written lately about the rise of crowdfunding websites like Kickstarter and the like, which is why I enjoyed Chris Anderson’s article on this new era of manufacturing. He touches on some major points, most notably that yes, while we are mainly an economy that relies on high end services, manufacturing is still the base that needs to be present in order to make sure everything hums along properly. Most people in the country cannot become consultants or bankers or doctors or lawyers, yet they still need fulfilling jobs and people still need/want things.

The Maker Movement takes manufacturing and makes it widely and broadly accessible for anyone to create and make goods with minimal (relatively speaking to the past) cost, something that will need to happen if we want to ensure a strong manufacturing base in the future. We all know that small businesses are the ones that keep the economy moving along, and I think the Maker Movement can become a tremendous opportunity for a lot of people. I still believe they are people in older manufacturing jobs that could benefit from this new access to capital, ideas and markets, who would better serve the economy by switching into this new market of making things at scale with minimal cost up front.

As long as we continue to invest in programs and services that help would be entrepreneurs grow and learn from each other (think local events like Meetups, online resources like Google’s new Entrepreneur center, other online web resources and the myriad SaaS services out there now to manage a business, etc.) we will start to see more and more innovation continue to happen at the lightning fast pace we have been accustomed to in the Internet era. And that is definitely a cause for celebration in a weak economy.

Paul Graham’s “How Not To Die”

I was having a few drinks with my good friend and old NYU roommate Josh, who is also the co-founder of an awesome startup called GoChime (if you haven’t heard of them, definitely check it out, especially all of you who want to find how social listening can drive commerce). He sent me Paul Graham’s brilliant article from 2007, and I was simply blown away by it.

Rather than posting the article in its entirety here, I have simply linked to it and encourage everyone who has ever wanted to start a business or who has ever had reservations and fears about starting a business, to give this article a good read. Josh mentioned to me that he re-reads this article every time he feels times get tough (which, as you can imagine, happen a lot for a startup) and it somehow gives him just enough solace and encouragement to keep on keepin’ on.

A quick blurb from the article:

So I’ll tell you now: bad shit is coming. It always is in a startup. The odds of getting from launch to liquidity without some kind of disaster happening are one in a thousand. So don’t get demoralized. When the disaster strikes, just say to yourself, ok, this was what Paul was talking about. What did he say to do? Oh, yeah. Don’t give up. – Paul Graham

I can definitely see why he revisits the article, and I have found myself reading it a lot over the past few weeks since my buddy introduced it to me. I’m sure countless other people out there toiling away on their idea revisit the article as well as a sort of compass to get through the tough times. And for that, I say thanks Paul.

Gangnam Style

Blown away by this.

From The Atlantic:

There are a few things we gleaned from this recent video of a PSY concert: (1) we now know what it looks like when all of Korea has a good time (2) that PSY might be one of the most powerful men on earth and has a megachurch-like following (3) that if there’s a concert to attend it’s best done in Korea.

Weekly Reading Roundup for August 19th, 2012

A collection of articles and posts over the past week that I have read and would like to share.

Awesome Video of the Day: F1 in the Lincoln Tunnel

To say I am incredibly excited about the F1 race coming to New Jersey in 2013 is complete and total understatement. Here is a video of Red Bull Racing’s David Coulthard driving the RB7 through the Lincoln Tunnel at…190 MPH. Yes.

Weekly Reading Roundup

A collection of articles and posts that I have been reading throughout the week.

Corporate Success & Change

The HBR ran this post on how companies need to manage change by capitalizing on it so as to build their next money making business. It’s an interesting argument in that it internalizes change as a driver for growth within a company, disallowing the company from effectively sitting on it’s laurels and not innovating within a constantly changing marketing. I tend to agree with everything written in the article except for the part where they say continue to win with the shell/original business. Having two concurrent businesses running at the same time can be done, and has definitely been done in the past (just think about multi-national conglomerates). It’s clearly a winning strategy as diversification of corporate revenue is always a good thing.

However, I do think it can be difficult to keep motivated in the original business when all resources from a corporate standpoint are looking to the “next big thing” at the company: people within your own organization will see you are basically building Noah’s Ark for when the floods come to destroy your existing company, but the new company will continue to float on, thereby completing the cycle. Nevertheless, companies need to manage employee expectations and also the timing of their jump into the next business, both of which are understandably easier said than done.