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Letter from a poor black kid. My response to the dumbest article ever at Forbes


I've created Yep.


Gene Marks' response:


I blame Jacquetta Szathmari. I was minding my business, not being offended by truly idiotic ideas, when I saw her facebook post and then blog post about this Forbes article by Gene Marks. I decided not to respond. Today, I broke my silence and posted a few tweets like this

and this

and this

But I thought that would be the end of it. Then I got a request from to write something about this nonsense, and so I thought about how I might take on this dumbshitteryTM (h/t, Elon James White). I opted to fight something that originally sounded like satire with satire. The full piece is over at CNN. Here's the setup

The following letter is a response from a hypothetical child to Gene Marks' article in Forbes, titled "If I Were A Poor Black Kid." While completely fabricated, the letter below has a stronger basis in reality than does Marks'. In his article, Marks, a business and technology contributor to Forbes, argues poorly that poor black children should use technology to improve their station in life. The article is terrible.

With Motorola acquisition, Google knows the importance of a Skypager!


(by ATCQ)

It's all over the papers glowing rectangles. Google is acquiring Motorola. Here are some of the reasons many pundits are citing:

  • Get into the hardware business at last
  • Get closer to the living room and enterainment devices, the better to compete with Apple.
  • Block a mobile partnership path for Microsoft
  • Help defend Android against patent lawsuits by inheriting Motorola's patents.
  • Show it can spend over $12 billion and not break a sweat.

I shared some of this initial reasoning, but the true secret motivation only now occurred to me. Google gets the StarTAC phone and, more importantly, pagers!!!

Come on yall. Sir Mix-A-Lot ain't no fool

Will Google Plus let me hangout with Halle Berry?

I like Google+

I like any service that uses special characters in its name.

That's why I loved Yahoo! so much. It was exciting. But that was 30 years ago, and a lot has happened since then.

I'm definitely using Google+. I haven't been as heavy a user as I normally am with new services because I'm finishing my book writing in the next week, and I've found that using Google+ is highly negatively correlated with getting important things done.

"There is something superhuman about being yourself" - me

Melissa Pierce is making a movie called Life In Perpetual Beta, and she decided to interview me! She summarizes the documentary as follows:

Life in Perpetual Beta is a documentary film about the ways in which technology has/is/will change the ways in which we think about ourselves as individuals and a society. It is exploring the cultural shift that technology creates as it enables people to live less planned and more passionate lives.

I met Melissa at SXSW Interactive (aka Geek Christmas) last year. We were waiting in a very long line for food, and we just started talking. She's a super cool, smart and motivated person, and this project sounded very exciting, especially given the structure of my multi-threaded life. 

When she was visiting NYC several months ago, we sat down for a few hours to discuss life, technology and the overlap thereof. The clip above is just a snippet, and I urge you to visit the film website and check out some of the other, more amazing, people she's roped in to this project.

My DLD talk in Munich about keeping the realtime web real with satire

Monday this week I sat on a panel called "Real Time" at the Digital Life Design (DLD) conference in Munich Germany. It was an incredible experience overall and with this panel. Moderated by Jeff Pulver, the panel explored the technology, challenges and cool opportunities presented by a web experience that is much more fast-paced than what we've been used to.

Also joining the panel were Loic Le Meur (of Seesmic) and Raj Narayan (of Glam Media)

Here's the video (35min) of the entire panel. I gave my opening remarks at roughly 16min in.

And here are the slides on slideshare


Introducing Say goodbye to productivity. Again

The homepageTechCrunch has the details:

With more than two billion links a month passed through its link shortening service, can see what is some of the most buzzed about and shared content on the Web. Today, it is exposing the most popular videos people share through on Bitly.TV, which is the second project under Labs (the super-short URL shortener was the first).

With being the main way people share links on Twitter, Bitly.TV might as well be called Twitter TV. The videos featured are based on’s bitrank algorithm. “The algorithm looks at velocity, popularity and persistence,” says general manager Andrew Cohen. “We’re examining the social distribution history of each video to determine what is trending, and to predict what will go viral.”


I especially love the concept of mathematically measuring velocity, popularity and persistence. It treats the data flowing through the web (well, the bitlyfied web) like a flowing liquid. In fact, I wonder if the principal of fluid dynamics (plus network theory) could be applied to build some super geeky model. Wow, that might have been the nerdiest sentence I've ever typed!

But let's face it. What really is:

  • the end of productivity again
  • a great mirror held up to the soul of society reflecting our values right back at us.

Apparently our souls are filled with Lady Gaga videos.