Tuesday, January 29, 2013

For 40 Years, This Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II | Past Imperfect

Incredible story.

For 40 Years, This Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II | Past Imperfect:

As the intruders scrambled up the mountain, heading for the spot pinpointed by their pilots, they began to come across signs of human activity: a rough path, a staff, a log laid across a stream, and finally a small shed filled with birch-bark containers of cut-up dried potatoes. Then, Pismenskaya said,

beside a stream there was a dwelling. Blackened by time and rain, the hut was piled up on all sides with taiga rubbish—bark, poles, planks. If it hadn’t been for a window the size of my backpack pocket, it would have been hard to believe that people lived there. But they did, no doubt about it…. Our arrival had been noticed, as we could see.

Monday, January 28, 2013

OXO Responds to Quirky

Well done response by OXO to a startup named Quirky that presumably was trying to generate some sensational PR by accusing OXO of ripping off their design. Below is my favorite part. It the whole response is terrific. 

"Ideas are limitless and patents expire for a reason: to encourage competition, innovation, and the evolution of new ideas that ultimately benefit the end user. If patents never expired, we would have only one car company, and the cars they develop would likely not be readily available and affordable to so many people all over the world. Imagine that.

At OXO, we either invent or improve. In this instance, we improved upon Mr. Kelley's patent. Many other innovators do this as well. Apple did not invent the Walkman. They did not invent the cell phone. They did not invent the tablet computer. Their designers improved each and now millions of people enjoy the fruits of their improvements."

Jim James from My Morning Jacket has a solo album

Jim James from My Morning Jacket has a solo album out. He's the best and it's streaming on NPR right now.

First Listen: Jim James, 'Regions Of Light And Sound Of God' : NPR:

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Great little example of inflation appearing in our economy. Click through for the story.



Scott Orn's Links - January 27, 2012

I've been reading a lot of good stuff online recently, so thought I would put up some links:

NBA's Kenneth Faried Comes Out in Support of Gay Marriage - very cool of Kenneth. When you read the article and watch the video, you learn that he was raised by two women.

ABC Proves Keeping a Good Sitcom on is Nearly as Hard as Making It - It's that time of the year when networks cancel some of my favorite shows. Maybe I'm not part of a big enough demographic or have niche taste in television. I don't know.

This time it was "Don't Trust the B in Apartment 23," which I liked very much. I can't wait for Netflix to really get it's content machine rolling. These are the kind of shows that I want to watch and would pay a premium subscription to Netflix for. Also, maybe these producers need to get on Kickstarter/IndieGoGo and just fund the damn thing themselves.

Crossword Author Uses Puzzle to Reveal He's Dying - a little sad, but also cool in the sense that he spent his life doing this. It's neat that he can use the medium to deliver news like that. Makes what he spent his life doing feel a little more substantial.

Diver Saves Dolphin - awesome story. Great video to watch. Dolphins must know something about us that we don't know.

Reid Hoffman on Founders Hiring a Professional CEO - there are a lot of startup lessons in here. Terrific blog post by the Founder of LinkedIn.

The 25 Things I Wish I Knew When I Moved to San Francisco - Spot on recap of SF. Explains a lot about the greatest city in the world. :)

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Matt Damon Takes Over Kimmel's Show

Awesome episode of Kimmel the other night with Matt Damon taking over the show. You can watch all the clips on YouTube and we did just that last night. It's really funny. Here's the first clip.

After 10 Years, Matt Damon Finally Duct-Tapes Jimmy Kimmel to a Chair - Hollywood Prospectus Blog - Grantland:

Friday, January 25, 2013

Ben's Friends Blog — Less than six months after his robotic surgery,...

John Stamler is an incredible guy. So great to see him recognized by the Cleveland Clinic. Also great that Ben's Friends was recognized by the Cleveland Clinic, one of the most prestigious medical organizations in the world.

Ben's Friends Blog — Less than six months after his robotic surgery,...:

"Less than six months after his robotic surgery, Mr. Stamler ran the New York City Marathon with a time of 3:36:50. His goal in participating was to help raise awareness of Ben’s Friends, an international organization dedicated to creating a network of online support communities for individuals with rare diseases.
“In addition to the stellar medical care I received at Cleveland Clinic, finding a Ben’s Friends online community and receiving support from others like me was very powerful and inspirational. It’s something I highly recommend,” Mr. Stamler says.


Looks pretty good.



Thursday, January 24, 2013

Twitter / cdixon: If only someone would invent ...


Twitter / cdixon: If only someone would invent ...:

Friday, January 18, 2013

Tweet from Paul Kedrosky (@pkedrosky)

Awesome point. 

Paul Kedrosky (@pkedrosky)
Be interesting to see if Google's Q4 earnings Tues show 2nd consecutive decline in desktop search. Epic shift underway.

Download the official Twitter app here

Joe Pug - Live at Bottom of the Hill

Joe Pug is one of my favorite new artists of 2012. I can't believe I missed this concert in SF. Check the link to listen and download: joe pug live at bottom of the hill on 5.1.12 - Captains Dead

Favorite songs are:

  • Great Despiser
  • Silver Harps
  • Hymn 76

Thursday, January 17, 2013

50 Million Americans Are Afraid of Shots. Distraction App Launched to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Needles.

My friend Irene launched a really cool app, Big Shots Get Shots App, designed to make kids less afraid of needles. The app has a nice story and great artwork. Congrats Irene.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

‘By the Way’

This is going to be good. 

Daring Fireball

First episode of Jeff Garlin's new podcast. His guest: Larry David. The result: very funny.

Sent with Reeder

Software engineer 'outsourced' his entire job to China for a fifth of his salary


The Verge - All Posts
Flickr | China flag

Outsourcing has been a reality in the American workplace for years now, but we haven't heard of an employee outsourcing his entire job — until now. According to the BBC, a software engineer was apparently outsourcing his entire job to China by paying a fifth of his six-figure salary to a local firm in Shenyang who handled his job for him.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Lefsetz Letter » Getting Old

I still like the TV Show "Girls," but I really loved the essay. I found myself nodding a lot while reading it.

Lefsetz Letter » Blog Archive » Getting Old:
"I just can’t get into “Girls.”
Then I realized, I’m too old. I’m not lost in my twenties, looking for love, a career and stability. I’ve found who I am. I may or may not like me, but I’ve got to accept me. Whereas when you’re young and dumb the world is your oyster, your dream is to conquer it. And then you get old enough to realize it’s not only beyond your grasp, it’s beyond anybody’s grasp, you’re gonna be here, then be gone and be forgotten, so you might as well enjoy the ride."

Monday, January 14, 2013

Please Support Ben's Friends Through a Sponsorship

We just crossed the $5,000 mark on the Ben's Friends 2013 Fundraiser. If you haven't donated yet, we'd be incredibly grateful. Julie, in her video below, explains what we are doing and how much it helps people. I found the video incredibly touching.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Tweet from adam pally (@adampally)

Wise words. 

adam pally (@adampally)
I keep my iPhone charger next to my toilet instead of next to my bed and I haven't run out of battery yet

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Aaron Swartz 1986-2013 Today, we lost a great mind to suicide,...

Sadly, a young man who was a major Internet figure committed suicide yesterday. I found this terrific quote from him. Words to live by. 

"Assume nobody else has any idea what they're doing either. A lot of people refuse to try something because they feel they don't know enough about it or they assume other people must have already tried everything they could have thought of. Well, few people really have any idea how to do things right and even fewer are to try new things, so usually if you give your best shot at something you'll do pretty well."

-- words of advice from Aaron in 2007.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

A Great 36th Birthday

I had a wonderful 36th birthday yesterday. Vanessa took me to Straw, one of my favorite places in SF for dinner, and I received a wonderful group of birthday wishes from the Ben's Friends crew on the Fibromyalgia Support Network. It was incredibly touching to read. I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

If You Have A Pulse And Get A Paycheck, Read This

This stinks.

If You Have A Pulse And Get A Paycheck, Read This:
"Your payroll tax is increasing starting January 1, 2013. That’s the tax you’re paying to fund social security (the money your grandma gets from the government).
Here’s a primer on it, but basically you’re “paying it forward.” You’re paying for your granny to receive social security money right now, then people who are younger than us will pay it forward and fund our social security. That’s if they have jobs to fund our social security, but never mind.
Your payroll tax will be sucking out around $80 – $200 of your take home pay each month starting in 2013 (assuming you’re paid twice a month). Here’s how it works out:
>If you make $113,000 or more, you’re going to be taking home about $200 less per month.
>If you make less than $113,000, you’re going to be taking home somewhere between $80 and $200 less per month.
Are we having fun yet? Don’t answer that."

Tim Goodman on Justified

"Watching the first episode of FX's Justified, season four, this feeling washes over you: God, this is such a well-written show. After the second episode, it's this feeling: Man, it's easy to forget exactly how great this series is."

Monday, January 7, 2013

"I’m thankful for Netflix, an internet connection, a heating pad, a hot cup of tea, gluten-free..."

Ben's Friends Blog
"I'm thankful for Netflix, an internet connection, a heating pad, a hot cup of tea, gluten-free ginger cookies, a warm dog, central heating, a wood-burning fireplace, flexible work hours and a very un…"

- from janeatiu, a member of Living with Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) - Online Support Group 
Sent with Reeder

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Ben's Friends, Five Years After Seth Godin's Tribes, and Now The Icarus Deception

Five years ago Ben Munoz and I read Seth Godin's book Tribes within a couple of days of each other. A few days later we decided to start a second support network and create an organization called Ben's Friends to help people with rare diseases. Today, there are 120 volunteer moderators, over 25,000 members, 10+ people behind the scenes who make it work, and 32 separate support communities.

Watch this video. We are just like the people Godin features in it. You could be just like them too if you listen to your passion and find a way to do it.

P.S. If you want to help us keep Ben's Friends going, you can sponsor us here.

The Icarus Deception on Vimeo:

The Icarus Deception from Squarespace on Vimeo.