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Sunday Musings #13

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photo-12(Whenever I can – even on cloudy days – I take the East River Ferry between Brooklyn and Manhattan. Some amazing views along the way, helps remind you of what makes this city great.)

This class at Stanford represents the future of business. It’s called Symbolic Systems and the major counts heavy hitters like Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer and LinkedIn’s co-founder Reid Hoffman as former patrons. It’s a combination of cognitive science and computing mixed with linguistics and neuroscience. I’ve always been obsessed with behavioral science and the role it plays in business transactions, be it technical or in person. With the Internet of Things washing over us more and more each day, there’s a constant threat of the tech stuff overcoming the human being side of it all. When they work together (see: this, this, and this) seamlessly, the future looks unimaginably bright.

Social is dead. Long live social! Check out this article, which lambastes the traditional “social media” views and “viral” successes as deeply veiled corporate scheming and carefully planned/promoted orchestrations. The author warns: So the next time you hear about a social media or viral success story, remember the roles that easily manipulated, huge, consumer-facing sites like YouTube play. And don’t buy the snake oil that social media salesmen like Gary Vee and others are trying to sell you. Above all, be skeptical. Be very, very skeptical. While I view this piece as a bit harsh (note the editor’s notes and corrections in the upfront), the social media space is changing, fueled by maturing marketers and brand managers…and teens who don’t give a shit about your statistics. In another piece, the author warns that we’ve sold social to our clients as the magical answer for every problem over the past several years. If social isn’t a viable way to reach our clients’ customers anymore, we’re firing blanks instead of silver bullets. He goes on to discuss the way teens approach “social”, which is trending towards simple messaging, particularly in groups (Twitter, WhatsApp, etc.). Has social tricked us all as just a huge fad? Doubtful. But, we all need a reminder that any tool (social media, TV, billboards, whatever) is only as good as the manner in which it maps back to human behaviors.

Watch the video below; it inspired me to start a new blog. This unique commencement speech can be summed up as such: You get to consciously decide what has meaning and what doesn’t. That’s freedom. The alternative is unconsciousness. In other words, our intentions or, rather, our decision to live every moment with intentions, is what has the power to make us happy. I’ve been having challenges with work/life balance for a long time now. As someone who loves his work, my default mode is to work on my work any time I have a free moment. But that’s not living. So, I’m documenting my new approach taking control of my time. The new blog is called Hustle & Know. I hope you enjoy it and participate.


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Growth obsessed startup co-founder (MusicBox) and strategist-for-hire.

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