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LinkedIn invites are flooding in?!

I don't know what's going on, am I suddenly famous? LinkedIn invites are picking up. I think it's more likely that LinkedIn has come up with a clever way to encourage people to link to others. I don't know, but I am receiving LinkedIn invites, from people I never heard of before, and from other cities and even countries. Whatever, first I was feeling important, now I am starting to feel a little besieged!

US Politics don’t have a left?

An interesting international perspective on politics:

"…So, believe me, US politics don’t have a Left. Looking at the presidential candidates, I am frankly appalled. None of them would be a viable politician in Sweden. They all support the death penalty, none advocates strict gun control and all make frequent mention of their religious beliefs in public. These are extremist stances. Not even the tiny Christian Democrat party mentions God publicly in Sweden, for fear of alienating the pragmatic rationalist majority…." (from Aardvarchaeology)

Aaron Swartz: continuing developments

In the continuing stories around Aaron Swartz and events that led to his tragic suicide recently:

"Many people speculated throughout the whole ordeal that this was a political prosecution, motivated by anything/everything from Aaron’s effective campaigning against SOPA to his run-ins with the FBI over the PACER database. But Aaron actually didn’t believe it was — he thought it was overreach by some local prosecutors who didn’t really understand the internet and just saw him as a high-profile scalp they could claim, facilitated by a criminal justice system and computer crime laws specifically designed to give prosecutors, however incompetent or malicious, all the wrong incentives and all the power they could ever want." (fromTarenSK)

Yay! Coffee is good for me (again)

Well these stories appear from time to time, either saying it's good or bad for you. What's an addict to do?

"Coffee isn't just warm and energizing, it may also be extremely good for you. In recent years, scientists have studied the effects of coffee on
various aspects of health and their results have been nothing short of amazing." (from Lifehacker)

I love sriracha sauce, do you?

Just tonight I squirted a few shots of Sriracha on my multi-layered-grilled- vegetable parmigiana. And now there's an article about Sriracha in Business Week!

"…Like ketchup, sriracha is a generic term, its name coming from a port town in Thailand where the sauce supposedly was conceived. When people in America talk about sriracha, what they’re really talking about is Huy Fong’s version. It’s been name-checked on The Simpsons, is featured prominently on the Food Network, and has inspired a cottage industry of knockoffs, small-batch artisanal homages, and merchandise ranging from iPhone cases to air fresheners to lip balm to sriracha-patterned high heels… " (fromBusinessWeek)

Just writing this blog post is making my mouth water! And, yeah, so I also learned that I had been pronouncing it wrong the whole time. It's


Kluge: Is that an obsolete term?

I was amazed today when in a group of 25 undergraduate engineering students, only three had heard the word kluge. When I explained what it was, it still did not ring a bell. When I asked how they refer to an ugly, clunky, scotch-taped solution, inelegant and embarrassing, but which basically works, they came up with "hack".

Query: Is the word "kluge" becoming obsolete among the geek community?

“The Lean Startup” doesn’t have the word “market” in its index

I am a really big fan of the book The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses. So much so that I am using it as a "textbook" for the Entrepreneurship course I am teaching at Olin College.

Oddly enough, I couldn't find the word "market" in the index.

Galapagos article from one my my fellow travelers

Last year we went with National Geographic to the Galapagos islands for an amazing journey of discovery. The Galapagos are a set of islands, part of Ecuador, that I had heard about all my life, but never thought of as somewhere I could actually visit. Well, you can. We could. It was a wonderful trip. Here is an article about that trip to the Galapagos was written for the Sidney Morning Herald by one of our co-travelers.

Are smartphone apps “applications” or “features”?

Andy Payne wrote an interesting analysis about the future of the "software industry" or whatever we should call it nowadays (e.g. is Amazon a software company?)

Not long ago a classic "put down" of a business idea was: "that's not a business, it's a product", or worse, "that's not a product it's a feature." Andy asks:

"As friction goes away, things become much more fine-grained. You don’t need $5m anymore to start a company: a laptop and a cafe wifi connection will do. This enables an explosion of new projects, but with smaller teams and narrower ideas. The industry gorilla platforms fuel a “feature ecosystem”: are those icons on your phone “apps” or “features”? Viewed in person terms: a thousand 100-person software teams might now be 30,000 3-person teams. Software is no longer a sport of kings." (from

Read the whole article, it's pretty interesting!