What I Read This Week: May 19, 2013

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  • On simplicity, night visions & doing what you damn well please. by Alexandra Franzen, “If you have a simple dream, simply do it. f you have an un-simple dream, strip it down to one string.”
  • Tender Buttons: Objects, guest post by Lisa Congdon for the Chronicle Books blog, “For Tender Buttons, concepting was an important phase since I was illustrating poems that were word play and had no central obvious theme. Brainstorming was a MUST! I needed to read each poem and then think about what words or phrases in the poem might translate into something more literal.”
  • The Secret to Getting More Done in Less Time, “Since I can’t magically grant you more time in the day, let me share with you the secret to getting more done in the time that you do have: aggressively guarding your schedule.”
  • Special Guest Edition: The Hawkeye Initiative IRL!, “So at our office holiday party, while our CEO was having everyone in the company sign it, I stand there grinding my teeth into tiny shards. Until, suddenly, it came to me: a vision.”
  • 10 Timeframes by Paul Ford, “The only unit of time that matters is heartbeats. Even if the world were totally silent, even in a dark room covered in five layers of foam, you’d be able to count your own heartbeats.”
  • Why Your Social Content Strategy Sucks (and How to Fix It) by Ted Rheingold, “People share things online for the same reason they share them at a bar or in the carpool – because they want to talk about something that matters emotionally to them. …Even better, we know why people share these items in-person – and it’s the same reason they share online. People share items with other people online because it makes them feel: Delighted, Furious, Proud, Bummed, Playful, Validate, Smart, Helpful …And that’s it.”
  • The Lady Web by Rena Tom, “I like working with women, many of whom have no formal business training, because nothing is taken for granted. There’s no assumptions that things will go smoothly. There’s no sense that things will be easy. At the same time, this does mean that women will reach out to others for support and look for a little more validation and feedback that what they are doing is “right.”
  • From Blog to Book – How to Turn Your Ideas Into Reality by Kate Woodrow
  • How I got here by Ryan Lawler
  • Watched: Star Wars Filibuster – Animation
  • Chefs+Tech 5.14.2013
  • Watched: Violence & Silence: Jackson Katz, Ph.D at TEDxFiDiWomen
  • Come here and work on hard problems… except the ones on our doorstep. “The dissonance here is enabling: come here, earn money, live in our playground, and don’t mind the poor, they’re better off here than many places in America.”
  • Angelina Jolie Removed Her Breasts to Save Her Life. Some Fans Wish She Hadn’t. “I can tell you from experience that when a person you love makes it through that surgery, they have never looked more lovely. I don’t mean that in a strictly emotional sense—it registers physically, too. The way that they look at you when they wake up. The breaths they take. Their smile. The way they move through space.”
  • What to REALLY Expect When You’re Expecting by Rachel Hollis, “I chose the title for this post because all of the baby books you read and the shows you watch while pregnant tell you what to “expect.” But using the word “expect” implies that you have any clue what you’re getting yourself into. You don’t. … Oh sure, on some level you know that you’ll have tough days and sleepless nights, but no one ever sits you down and says, “Look, this is a crapshoot at best, so gird your loins!”
  • My Medical Choice by Angelina Jolie, “Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much I could. I made a decision to have a preventive double mastectomy.”
  • Vacation photos: San Francisco on A Cup of Jo
  • What My Grandmother Taught Me About Loving My Body on Curvy Yoga, “So, for now, I’m left wondering: how, as women, can we separate ambition, success and body loathing/controlling? In what ways is that legacy still present for us, in what ways has it shifted, and in what ways can we take it in our own hands and make it what we want it to be?”
  • The Flammable Years by Laurie Wagner, “So much of any year is flammable. Where does it go? A slide show of images out of time and in no particular order.”
  • Listened: Crowd Sourcing Cold Cases – Host Dick Gordon speaks with Michelle McNamara, author of the True Crime Diary blog. She and a community of online sleuths have helped detectives take a new look at the Golden State Killer and other cold cases.
  • A Very Rare Night With Lil B on Grantland
  • Watched: Ron Finley: A guerilla gardener in South Central LA
  • Doctor Kermit Gosnell found guilty of murdering infants in late-term abortions
  • Mad Men recap: A Man with a Plan – Season 6, Episode 7
  • Overcome the Complexity Within You, “Instead of cutting to the heart of an issue, they tangle it further; rather than narrowing down projects, they allow the scope to keep expanding; and instead of making decisions, they defer until there is more data and better analysis. … If this kind of pattern seems all too familiar to you, and you want to learn how to think more like a “simplifier,” here are four questions that you can ask yourself and/or discuss with your team: How much data is enough? Have we agreed on the key priorities? Do we have an efficient process for rapid review and course correction? Can we explain our plan to others? … One of the key characteristics of a simplifier is the ability to tell stories that convey the situation, the goals, and the plans — in a way that helps people understand what they need to do and how their work fits with everything else.”
  • The importance of being antifragile by Bjørn Stærk, “Antifragility lights up a part of the world we often overlook: Things that grow stronger from chaos, uncertainty, resistance and stress. … In practice this means replacing the misguided quest for perfect predictions with simpler heuristics, such as favoring situations with an limited downside and an unlimited upside over those with a limited upside and an unlimited downside. … Fragility feels safe, but the fact that the upside is more probable is outweighed by the fact that the downside is so horrible. … An everyday example is that you ask someone out for a date. The worst, and most likely, outcome is that they decline, which is sad but no disaster. But the best outcome is that you will find someone to spend the rest of your life with. …Antifragility is frightening, but the fact that the downside is more probable is outweighed by the fact that the upside is so wonderful. …In an antifragile system, we must embrace randomness and stressors. …And if you avoid adversity in small things, you will be unprepared to deal with it in large things.”
  • Do You Make Excuses For Yourself Based on the “One-Coin Argument”? I Do. by Gretchen Rubin, “The one-coin problem captures a paradox that’s familiar to all of us: when we consider our actions, often it’s true that any one instance of an action is almost meaningless, yet at the same time, a sum of those actions is very meaningful. Whether we focus on the single coin, or the growing heap, will shape our behavior.”
  • Watch Out San Francisco, Typhoid Fever Is Back
  • A Love List: What your mama really wants for Mother’s Day

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