A mix of tech, culture and food in this week’s collection:
Tech in 2020: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants– What’s next in the world of tech, not that over 4 billion people have a smartphone? This is the question that tech analysts, Benedict Evans, attempts to answer in this presentation. A data point that was new to me – ‘China and India use more mobile data than the rest of the world combined‘.
Pop Culture’s Rate of Change May Mirror Organic Evolution– A fascinating research that compares the rates of evolution of certain cultural phenomena—pop music, automobiles, medical literature and 19th-century novels—with those of the scarlet tiger moth, the Darwin’s finches of the Galápagos Islands and two other well-studied creatures: a snail and another moth. And the conclusion is that “the evolutionary pace of modern culture is generally the same as that of many animal populations—which is to say, it is a lot slower than people think.”
Inside Google’s Efforts to Engineer its Food for Healthiness– Almost everyone knows Google has a tech / data company. And almost everyone with some knowledge of the company would know that it’s very famous for its free food policy. I have been fortunate to have visited a couple of Google offices internationally. Our team would eagerly look forward to these visits as it was an opportunity to have the food there! This is an in-depth look at how Google is applying its famous policy of experimentation to get their employees, especially in the US, to eat healthier. “What Google is attempting here is culture change…And that’s the level we have to reach to transform behaviors and health for a lifetime.”
We are into the second month of the new decade already! It’s been an interesting weekend, especially in sports, with the Australian Open Finals and the Super Bowl, not to mention the Six Nations Rugby.
This weeks’ articles focus on culture in tech.
Social Capital in Silicon Valley – A very interesting read on what really makes Silicon Valley the centre of tech innovation and entrepreneurship. “Silicon Valley works the way it does, as successfully as it does, because it has a rich social contract that governs everyone’s behaviour. Without that social contract, Silicon Valley tech becomes just another industry, or just another bubble.”
Clayton Christensen, Yuval Noah Harari, CES, Davos, tennis and more in this week’s set.
How Will You Measure Your Life – I must admit that I was not familiar with Clayton Christensen’s work until last week. The number of posts that popped up on my professional social network feed on his passing away last week led me to learn more about him. And I am glad I did. This article is nearly 10 years old now but still as, if not more, relevant today.
Yuval Noah Harari’s warning to Davos– Israeli historian, Yuval Harari, explained the threat from ‘technological disruption’ at the recent World Economic Forum at Davos. A must-read thought-provoking article. Among the key takeaways – ‘humans are likely to lose control over our own lives and also lose the ability to understand public policy.’ Also, ‘The global order is now like a house that everybody inhabits and nobody repairs.’
An unlikely vision of the future from the Consumer Electronics Show– What are some of the technological innovations that marketers might want to know more about this year? Read more about them in this article. “It is truly time for marketers to accept that the old models and traditional ways of operating are very much things of the past.”
The Inner Game: Why Trying Too Hard Can Be Counterproductive– This article claims that ‘The standard way of learning is far from being the fastest or most enjoyable. It’s slow, makes us second guess ourselves, and interferes with our natural learning process. Here we explore a better way to learn and enjoy the process.’ It takes the example of learning to be a better tennis player to explain the rationale for this statement.‘If we can overcome the instinct to get in our own way and be more comfortable trusting in our innate abilities, the results may well be surprising.’
You’re Going Digital — Now What? – Some tips that can help ‘transform’ your Digital Transformation initiatives. Key insight for me was that “the formation of new and initially invisible social networks… may be the most important ingredient in driving digital transformations.”
Five Rules for Leading in a Digital World – Tips for leaders in this “VUCA on Steroids” world.
16 Rules for Living with Less– So you would like to declutter and adopt a more minimalist lifestyle, but don’t know where to start? These set of rules could well prove very helpful.
In which I list down articles that can help us in our daily lives…
Beat the clock: how you can save two hours a day – It’s interesting to see the increase in articles these days that speak about how to reduce time wasters and focus on one’s priorities. This article has an interesting suggestion for how one could actually put this theory to practice. In this article, author Marie Forleo, suggests that one should aim to free up two hours a day by first understanding where one’s time is presently being spent. It might sound tough, but there are some useful tips on how one can achieve this.
The Mental Health Benefits of Having a Daily Routine – This might seem counter to the popular notion these days that flexibility is one of the key requirements for success. But I strongly believe that having a daily routine can be a powerful tool to help us achieve our goals. In addition to providing an anchor in this fast changing world, it can help reduce stress and help us sleep better. Interestingly, both this and the earlier article emphasises the importance of developing a good food habit as well.
In the Beginning, Anything is Possible – So, if all of the above articles have helped you decide that you need to make a change, and you are wondering where to start, then this excellent article might just be your best starting point.
Digital marketer, travel / culture / heritage enthusiast