links for 2010-08-28

  • The Law of Action Planning: No rigid rules or systems for figuring out “what to do when” can work effectively for more than a few weeks before becoming obsolete. this has been my experience, yet I'm trying again... we'll see how it holds up.
  • survey customers, figure out what the main selling points are, clear up points of confusion, usability test. great case study
  • Something to consider when people say they've spent a lifetime with a company: 5. Your bad employees rarely quit – For one thing, poor performers aren’t really all that motivated to look, as that might involve actual performance. For another, no one else is likely to recruit them. Your marginal and weak employees are with you for life unless you move proactively. In many years of running businesses, the only time this wasn’t true was during the dot-com bubble. At that time, every idiot could get a 15 percent to 20 percent raise here in Northern Virginia by changing jobs. And they did. Aside from that blessed time, weak employees are your most “loyal.”
  • crazy customized dunk hi's. the problem is if i ever get enough money to afford these i'll probably have a nicer wardrobe than dunk hi's
  • LA times sorted through years of test score data to figure out which teachers boost student test scores and which do the opposite. glad they are doing this, glad they are trying to stir the pot - analysis of teachers is biased b/c reporter knows teacher's score though.
  • The typical manager's default response when somebody keeps saying no is to keep selling the idea. The manager trots out more evidence to support the idea and describes the payoffs for the other person. And the person keeps saying no. There's a better way. Asking a series of easily answered questions will help the other person rethink his assumptions and open up possibilities for agreement.
  • cool video
    (tags: cool)
  • Students are free, all day, every day, to do what they wish at the school, as long as they don't violate any of the school's rules. None of the school's rules have to do with learning. The school gives no tests. It does not evaluate or grade students' progress.[1] There is no curriculum and no attempt to motivate students to learn. Courses occur only when students take the initiative to organize them, and they last only as long as the students want them. Many students at the school never join a course, and the school sees no problem with that. The staff members at the school do not consider themselves to be teachers. They are, instead, adult members of the community who provide a wide variety of services, including some teaching. Most of their "teaching" is of the same variety as can be found in any human setting; it involves answering sincere questions and presenting ideas in the context of real conversations.
  • The fact is, if we had real democracy, there would be no internet in Pakistan, women would not be allowed out of their homes, education would come to a standstill and we would begin a programme of killing off every minority. Thank you corrupt generals and politicians, you keep this at bay with some sense of being answerable to a world that still has some humanity in it, even if you don’t.
  • Taxation is an often-overlooked factor in the internal politics of the Middle East: it helps to explain why undemocratic regimes stay in power for so long. Governments that have substantial non-tax income can buy themselves out of trouble by showering largesse on the population, often keeping prices low through subsidies (as happens in Iran). As a rule of thumb, high taxes can act as a spur towards democracy and accountable government. Conversely, where taxes are low the pressure for democracy and accountability is usually less.
  • I think that the central trend here is that people do not want to work. 1. I worry that many college graduates are unsettled nowadays because they did not really learn much.
  • Ask giver to think in terms of time given up, not money. Asking giver to think about anything (5 babies, 100 pencils, etc) instead of "how much money" works

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