Technology Entertainment and Design

The foundation's logo.

Image via Wikipedia

I started watching TED talks in 2006 when they became available for free online. Since I don’t always keep up with them, it’s nice to have the google doc of every talk. TED talks help keep businesses ahead of the curve and stay informed. This is essential if you want to evolve and remain successful.



Felix Dennis

“Forget glamour if the getting of money is your priority. The laws of supply and demand apply not only to commodities but to the choices people make. Too many people wish to make blockbuster movies and live in Beverly Hills.” -Felix Dennis

Felix Dennis is one of my favorite entrepreneurs, and I always keep his advice in mind. If you want a job, search for work many people don’t want to perform. It may not be glamourous, but you’ll make money. This holds true for starting a business, big or small. I appreciated this point when I was considering a career as a musician earlier this year.

Felix also instructs us to ‘look carefully at the prevailing industries where wealth appears to be gravitating.’ He did this in the 70’s when he founded Dennis Publishing, a successful magazine publishing company, turning him into a multimillionaire.

Dennis is honest about the nature of the business world. He gives forewarning in his books, How To Get Rich and 88, The Narrow Road that other authors often fail to recognize. His input equips young entrepreneurs, small business owners, and potential business owners with invaluable knowledge, providing a base for a strong defense mechanism.

Choose A Great Title That Grabs Attention

Covers of World Wide Rave and The New Rules of...

Image via Wikipedia

“Every time you write, you have an opportunity to communicate and to convince” (David Meerman Scott). When choosing an advertisement to describe our products, Scott suggests we avoid phrases that are overused. He calls these words ‘gobbledygook.’

Overused phrases that are popular in the tech world include innovative, cutting-edge, and new and improved. Using these titles decreases our chances of convincing our audience that our products are great, because everybody uses them.

There are exceptions to this rule, but many times advertisers are being lazy or don’t understand their customer’s needs. Instead, we should simply state what our product is or what problems we are actually solving.

For more on this topic, read Seth Godin’s Encyclopedia of Business Clichés, and the Gobbledygook Manifesto by David Meerman Scott. Visit Gobbledygook Grader to analyze your content.

Google Computers

Google 的貼牌冰箱(Google refrigerator)

Image by Aray Chen via Flickr

With Android OS, Chromebook, Google +, Google Music, and the collection of other Google developments, when will we see them design their own computer without samsung? If they decide to do this, I think they will do well in the market.

To keep up with what Google is working on, check out google labs (thank you, Nichole Byrer).

Parks and Recreation

Ron Swanson

Image via Wikipedia

Do you know anybody who is all business, all the time? I do, and they don’t come off as very fun. However, they may be interesting, like Ron Swanson from Parks and Recreation. The entire cast of Parks and Recreation is incredible, but Swanson is perfect for this example.
     He is so hilarious in a joyless way, which makes him even funnier when he freaks out. Although he pretends to not care about other co-workers, he actually cares a great deal about them. Generally, making conclusions about people based on their actions and appearance isn’t the best way to get to know a person. Give people a chance. Maybe they will surprise you the Ron Swanson way. Check out the Swanson Pyramid of Greatness.

The Me Monster!

Beware of the me monster! It’s human nature to be self-centered from time to time. We want to feel good about ourselves, so sometimes we get lost in our own problems. Do you think anybody can be totally altruistic? If not, truly caring about making this world a better place still makes you feel better about yourself. We can easily change our habits and focus on helping others. Instead of tearing others down, build them up. Many times people who tear other people down and talk only about themselves are suckers with no self-esteem.

In the business world, it’s important to care about the well-being of others. If a person truly cares about solving your problems, it shows in their actions and body language. They go the extra mile for you, and they make sure they are fair with you. You’re probably more likely to do business with the people that care about you over the people who just care about the bottom line.

Staying Informed Online, Facebook, and Spotify


Alltop is my favorite place to stay informed.  When you search for a topic, Alltop takes you to that category and displays links to just about all of the relevant websites, with the top five stories from each source. This enables you to see all of the top stories from the most legitimate sources online, all on one page, for any given topic! This also allows you to check for consistency on popular stories and find other articles much faster.

I like to check the news on a variety of other websites, and I read random blogs by searching for interesting topics through google blogs. I read the week, huffington post, google news, fast company, forbes, yahoo, etc. These sites are great, but some have pop-ups and yahoo keeps trying to get me on facebook.

It’s interesting to see what your friends and family are reading and listening to in real-time on yahoo and spotify through facebook. I’m a musician, so a lot my friends have been trying to get me on spotify; I’m just not a fan of sharing what I’m listening to and reading all day.

Mark Zuckerberg’s forbes profile says, “What the CIA failed to do in 60 years, Zuck has done in 7: knowing what 800 million people–more than 10% of the world’s population–think, read and listen to, plus who they know, what they like and where they live, travel, vote, shop, worship.” Ouch.

World Class Organizations

Image representing Richard Branson as depicted...

"Ethics aren't just important in business. They are the whole point of business." -Richard Branson

“Great bosses and world class organizations hire motivated people, set high expectations, and give their people room to become remarkable.” – Seth Godin

Richard Branson states, “Find good people and set them free. Business has to give people enriching, rewarding lives, or it’s simply not worth doing.”

According to Branson, the ‘Virgin type’ of person is all over the world. He says, “These people, by their nature and their outlook on life, enjoy working with others. They’re attentive. They smile freely. They’re often lively and fun to be with.”

When you hire someone with integrity, a great attitude, high energy, and drive, you get solutions and your employees get freedom. Dishonest employees with a bad attitude don’t get freedom, because you obviously have to monitor them and make sure they’re not stealing from you or treating customers with disrespect.

The individuals with enthusiasm and drive will learn the job, have freedom, and create new solutions with excitement. They will become remarkable, and they will find other great individuals for other jobs within the company. This is how a remarkable business is created.

Happy 11/11/11


Image by Laurie | Liquid Paper via Flickr

Finally, it’s 11/11/11. I’ve been waiting for this date my entire life. Now I can finally make that wish I’ve been waiting to make since I was five years old. It would be nice to share it with you guys, but then it won’t come true.

Okay, fine: I wish the technological singularity would hurry up and happen. Moore’s Law is interesting, the world is intense, and I think I need a beer. Ray Kurzweil, inventor and futurists, predicts that there will be no distinction between human and machine, post singularity. I’m listening to a dubstep song by Skrillex as I’m writing this. Great. He actually just played a show at the Bluebird here in Bloomington, IN this Wednesday.

Speaking of the future, check out Seth Godin if you haven’t already. He is a great author and reminds us that sharing, being sincere, and helping others is the way of the future. If you’re in sales, a fair price and a genuine caring for others will take you much further in the long run than scamming people. You don’t want to be like Eric from Billy Madison who can’t even define business ethics. That guy sucks.