The deal should remind investors to take a closer look at today’s hottest tech startups, says Columbia Business School professor Rita Gunther McGrath. via 15 years later, lessons from the failed AOL-Time Warner merger. The commentary correctly identifies that AOL’s business model was connectivity. But I take it step further: it did not value it’s customers as a community.

@mat just won it. incredible piece. if you work online in content or advertising in any way, you have to read it. Inside the Buzz-Fueled Media Startups Battling for Your Attention | WIRED.

In 2015, then, the winners of the Facebook attention lottery are going to be more videos, as well as genuinely native, in-app content from advertisers. The losers are going to be external websites who have become reliant on the Facebook traffic firehose. That traffic is going to start falling, in 2015, for the first time. And the repercussions are likely to be huge. via The beginning of the end of Facebook’s traffic engine » Nieman Journalism Lab.

I’m a little disappointed that some of my early sites were not listed, but the list only starts in 1996. From Lycos to Ask Jeeves to Facebook: Tracking the 20 most popular web sites every year since 1996 – The Washington Post.

Kenji Yamaguchi’s shop could be mistaken for Sid’s workbench from Toy Story, a place where mangled lenses and broken shutters crowd out bare areas of his workspace. His office is tucked away in the basement of National Geographic, behind a grease-covered floor filled with drill presses and electric saws. Surrounded by robotic motors, modified macro lenses, and custom flashes, Kenji builds contraptions that can’t be bought. When a photographer needs to fasten a camera onto a thirty-foot pole to capture a bird in her nest, or build a wide-angle macro lense to identify pollen on a flower with mountains in the background, he’ll call Kenji.   The Magic Starts Here: Kenji’s Workshop of Camera Wizardry | PROOF.

I spent some quality time with one of my very favorite publications this weekend, Outside Magazine. In their December issue, the same month Rolling Stone published their UVA story, they published this incredible piece of powerful journalism, done well and done right. It goes after a powerful organization with a culture of silence and shame. The central figure in the narrative not only gives her full name, she’s photographed. And the story’s narrative clearly discusses how her story came out over years, and how it changed as she came to terms with the psychological affects of her experience. How she rationalized it, how she changed it into different scenarios to make it more acceptable, and how she finally came to[…]

So, I gave this TED talk a couple of years ago at an event about the BP Oil Spill. It was a real honor to share the stage with Sylvia Earle and incredibly emotional on stage and off. TEDxOilSpill – David Johnson – An Untold Story About the Spill – YouTube.

Prepare a synopsis or scenario of events in the order of their absolute occurrence—not the order of their narrations. This is a practice adhered to by writers from J.K. Rowling and William Faulkner to Norman Mailer. It seems a an excellent general piece of advice for any kind of fiction. Prepare a second synopsis or scenario of events—this one in order of narration (not actual occurrence), with ample fullness and detail, and with notes as to changing perspective, stresses, and climax. Write out the story—rapidly, fluently, and not too critically—following the second or narrative-order synopsis. Change incidents and plot whenever the developing process seems to suggest such change, never being bound by any previous design. It may be that the[…]

“You may not need a business plan if you’re six Stanford engineers in Silicon Valley who have an app that’s got a million followers, because you’re going to be acquired so you can be hired,” said Ms. Abrams, author of “Successful Business Plan: Secrets & Strategies.” “But if you’re starting a cafe in Des Moines or a graphic design business in Phoenix, you really want to plan. It doesn’t have to be a big document, but you get to make your mistakes on paper, rather than in real life.” via As Start-Up Strategies Evolve, So Does Role of a Business Plan – NYTimes.com.