Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.
Merlin Mann | Sep 2 2008
Welcome back, friend. Per what I wrote in your yearbook back in June, I hope you had a nice summer and stayed sweet and cool. You look great. Did you lose weight or something?
Somewhere along the way over the past few weeks, I seem to have got my game on again here at 43 Folders. I wrote a few items that I'm proud of and that lots of people seemed to enjoy. I'm once again posting about stuff that means a lot to me, and I'm feeling good about the site and where it (and I) will be heading over the next year. (More on that soon)
But, if you were tanning on Ibiza or building houses with Jimmy Carter and missed out on my wordy comeback season, here's a few articles I hope you will enjoy.
It's nice to have you back; I found the Vette, and I'm pumped for Fall.read more »
Merlin Mann | Sep 1 2008
Like a lot of people I have a bad habit of CMD-Clicking tab sets in my browser, which then spawns a dozen or more new panes of potential distraction, pointless horseshit, and 10,000 excuses not to focus on what I really want to be making right now.
I whipped up this (rather plain and inefficiently coded) page this morning, and stuck it into every tab set that I tend to abuse: as the first tab I see.read more »
Merlin Mann | Aug 27 2008
On the off chance that you care or find it useful in developing your own filtering, here's my insanely reductive, mean-busy-guy way to make a 90-second decision on whether to read a new non-fiction book from an author I'm not familiar with.
It does not matter whether you agree with these; that's how you know they're personal heuristics. Also, they are almost uniformly unfair and unkind. So.read more »
Merlin Mann | Aug 27 2008
Merlin Mann | Aug 26 2008
As duplicitous and sad as "fake following" sounds -- and let's be honest: the whole idea's pathetic on a number of levels -- for a certain kind of user, I can see why there's a desire for this functionality. Especially on a site like FriendFeed, which has quickly become the platform of choice for the web's least interesting narcissists -- and the slow-witted woodland creatures who enjoy grooming their fur -- this is a major breakthrough in the makebelieve friendship space. Yes, primate culture may be primitive, but it is not without its evolving needs.
Thing is, "fake following" is also not so far off from a more wholesome feature that I've been begging for on social networks for years now:
Any application that lets you "friend," "follow," or otherwise observe another user should include a prominent (and silent) "PAUSE" button.read more »
Matt Wood | Aug 22 2008
Years ago when I started my first job out of college, my employer sent its new crop of computer consultants to South Bend, Indiana for a week-long training session. Typical stuff: we watched a hilariously inappropriate sexual harassment video, learned how to use the company’s timekeeping system (a thick client C++ program named, aptly, “Data Time Entry”), and generally got used to the idea of living out of a suitcase.
Late in the week, an entire day was devoted to a presentation by a FrankinCovey trainer who showed us how to use the fancy leather-bound, three-ring binder/planner/organizer that our company purchased for us, complete with a storage case for archiving calendar pages. She ran us through the whole Covey system. We watched a video of one of Stephen Covey’s motivational seminars-cum-religious revivals and made lists of our goals, hopes, and regrets. I raised my hand and told a story about how lousy I felt for saying something nasty to my mom before I left that week. “Call Mom to apologize” went onto my Weekly Compass, marked Priority A.
At one point, the trainer demonstrated a little pocket notebook that could be detached from the binder when you didn’t want to lug around the whole thing, “a satellite that always returns to the mothership,” she called it. We snickered while she pantomimed writing down someone’s phone number at a Bears game; she was crazier than the guy in suspenders from the day before who taught us about management with a modified version of Monopoly. Most of us were planning to buy Palm Pilots with our first paychecks anyway. But I didn’t realize then how prescient that moment was. Training class Matt would laugh Matt circa 2008 all the way down I-90 if he could see me now.read more »
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