January 19, 2017

Hacking the news is social engineering: Clint Watts

The media is getting played, too

"The American press has focused a disproportionate amount of attention on Russian hacking and cyberattacks, and the reporting itself has only muddied the truth for most in the audience:

-- says Clint Watts, a former FBI special agent and Executive Officer of the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, in an interview with CJR. Watts is now a senior fellow at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at George Washington University, where he analyzes social bots, trolls, and websites that intelligence agencies say are the foot soldiers of Russia's information war.

"The hacking generates information, which promotes Russia's influence campaign, but the end objective is to convince people to choose a candidate based on Russia's preference. This is getting confused, because people hear 'hack' and they think their votes are being changed."

It's a classic page from the Cold War playbook, says Watts, adding that Putin has brought new meaning to the Soviet-Era doctrine of using "the force of politics" rather than "the politics of force."

"The main success of this campaign is not that it took place, but the panic we are in now," Meister adds. "We've lost our self-confidence in our system, in our democracy, in our elections and in our media. That's the biggest success of the Russian campaign."

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August 16, 2016

Lifehacking: Making small changes stick: daily routine for 30 days

Is there something you've always meant to do, wanted to do, but just ... haven't? Matt Cutts suggests: Try it for 30 days. This short, lighthearted talk offers a neat way to think about setting and achieving goals.

A daily task will make you mindful of time; a month will not pass unnoticed.


More in lifehacking.

August 10, 2014

Every job ever

The grunt work of programming--probably like the boilerplate in a brief: you have to understand the situation and know the customs, but you're not really solving a puzzle. The thinking gets sprinkled in when there's something in the situation that's novel or unusual.

February 13, 2014

1. Manage your energy, not your time

1. Manage your energy, not your time
2. Prepare the night before. Your to-do list for tomorrow takes 10 minutes that night and saves 3 hours the next day.
3. Don't open email until noon.
4. Turn your phone off and leave it in another room.
5. Work in a cool place. Turn the temperature down.
6. Sit up or stand up.
7. Eat as a reward for working hard.

-- James Clear

February 10, 2014

Keep a journal with you at all times

Keep a journal with you at all times

Here is one, that is probably most underestimated. Keeping a daily journal of what you got done, of what worries you and what inspired you, is one of the best productivity tools there is. Some of the most famous writers of all time, including Franz Kafka, Virginia Wolf and others, strictly kept to daily journals. And Harvard Business School professor Teresa Amabile even wrote a whole book about it:

"One of the big reasons to keep a diary is to record small wins that otherwise might slip through your memory. You can leverage the progress principle and allow yourself to get that boost from realizing you are making progress. And it's also helpful to record major setbacks - or minor ones that recur - so you can think about how to get rid of inhibitors blocking your progress."

And journaling, fortunately is also one of the easiest ways to start writing consistently. To make keeping a daily journal even easier, here are 3 tools that make it a no-brainer:

Day One app - beautiful iOS and Mac apps for journaling

Moleskine - I've found that spending more money on a simple notebook, helps you to value your notes more too.

OhLife - Get a daily email asking about how your day went.

February 5, 2014

Make millions selling platitudes of frugal living

Fear and insecurity can be a salesperson's best friend.

Ms. Olen learns how lucrative it is to sell financial services to the elderly...

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January 5, 2014

be concerned about worker sleep health

Workplace Well-Being

Q. How can you and other researchers publicize the hidden but massive costs imposed by inflexible workplace management so that managers learn to do better by their employees? The short-term emphasis on benchmarks and cutting costs, at the longer-term expense of institutional health, employee well-being, customer service and societal balance is very destructive. -- Dean, U.S.

A. Businesses should be concerned about worker sleep health, as Dean points out, for the many destructive impacts of having a narrow, short-term focus. Coincidentally, this narrowness of focus mirrors the mental state of sleep-deprived individuals. In the United States, being at work but not fully functional because of insomnia (called "presenteeism") has been estimated to cost $63 billion annually. We have evidence of multiple pathways by which the workplace impacts health and wellness.

Management can either be a part of the problem, or be a part of long-term solutions. We need evidence-based solutions that both improve worker health and benefit employers. Stay tuned. We also need a platform for broader conversations, like this Booming blog, than academic journals offer, because in part this is a social problem of cultural norms around balancing work and nonwork, the corporation and the individual.

-- Orfeu Marcello Buxton

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November 6, 2013

Merging and aggregating quantified self data

The first step is to collect the data in one app, so that the weight you're measuring on the Withings connected scale and the stats on the 30-mile bike ride you tracked using MapMyRide, as well as your blood pressure, all appear in the same app and on the same interface.

Which app or website that should be is still up for grabs. A diverse group of fitness and vital-signs device makers, as well as app developers, are trying to figure it out. And the aggregation of monitoring data has turned into a spider's web of possibilities, with the functions captured on one app or hardware device able to be viewed on scores of others.

So now not only can you track Withings' weight data on Fitbit's app, but you can track Fitbit's activity data on Withings' app.

The MyFitnessPal weight-loss app shares information with Fitbit, Runtastic, BodyMedia, Jawbone and the Withings scale, among others. Fitbit shares its information with over 30 partners, including Lose It!, MapMyRun, and SleepDebt, as well as Withings and MyFitnessPal. Visit the site of your favorite fitness and health device or application, and you'll find similar partnerships.

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November 2, 2013

Help ! Video

With live, one-on-one video, a yoga teacher could instruct a student to hold her arm at a different angle or a lactation consultant could suggest that a mother position her infant in a different way.

Yet for the kind of questions the search engine can't answer, Google already has an alternative: YouTube, where how-to videos, like tying a bow tie or installing a car seat, are one of the most popular types for viewers and advertisers.

Live Helpouts videos are different, Mr. Manber said, because the expert can see exactly what a person is doing wrong, and the user can ask questions.

Other companies, like Quora, try to connect people with experts to answer questions, and some use video, like Joyus for shopping, American Well for health care and Wello for fitness training.

Helpouts is also part of a trend in tech to bridge offline and online commerce, including Square for payments, TaskRabbit for hiring people and Airbnb for renting homes.

If Helpouts succeeds, Google hopes it will provide experts with a source of income, so retired doctors or guitar players could teach people online. Experts charge a fixed rate or by the minute (a Helpouts session from Kitchit on making Thanksgiving stuffing costs $20). They keep 80 percent and Google takes 20 percent.

Helpouts is an obvious venue for marketers (Sephora is offering free one-on-one make-up tutorials, for instance) and Bridget Dolan, Sephora's vice president for digital marketing, said she could imagine eventually selling products from a Helpouts session.

October 26, 2013

Scientific American Why Your Brain Needs More Down time Research on naps, meditation, nature walks and the habits of exceptional artists and athletes reveals how mental breaks increase productivity, replenish attention, solidify memories, creativity

Why Your Brain Needs More Downtime.

A 2010 LexisNexis survey of 1,700 white collar workers in the U.S., China, South Africa, the U.K. and Australia revealed that on average employees spend more than half their workdays receiving and managing information rather than using it to do their jobs; half of the surveyed workers also confessed that they were reaching a breaking point after which they would not be able to accommodate the deluge of data.

Research on naps, meditation, nature walks and the habits of exceptional artists and athletes reveals how mental breaks increase productivity, replenish attention, solidify memories and encourage creativity

Continue reading "Scientific American Why Your Brain Needs More Down time Research on naps, meditation, nature walks and the habits of exceptional artists and athletes reveals how mental breaks increase productivity, replenish attention, solidify memories, creativity" »

May 22, 2013

ABC: Always be coding

Know thy complexities ( Read this cheat sheet. ) Then make certain you understand how they work. Then implement common computational algorithms such as Dijkstra's, Floyd-Warshall, Traveling Salesman, A*, bloom filter, breadth-first iterative search, binary search, k-way merge, bubble/selection/insertion sort, in-place quick sort, bucket/radix sort, closest pair and so on. Again, ABC.

May 21, 2013

Quantify yourself

Dancy uses sensors to track his movements. His dog has a sensor to track where it is in the house. Sensors in his home are programmed so the music can be turned on and off during the day. Lights in the house turn on when he walks into the house. He uses IFTTT (If this then that) and Zapier to connect apps that feed into Google Calendar, Evernote and Excel.


March 21, 2013

Automated search and automated commerce begat algorithmic schlock ?

Having found its golden meme, Solid Gold Bomb wrote a computer script to churn out hundreds of T-shirt designs riffing on the phrase -- "Keep Calm and Dream On" to "Keep Calm and Dance Off." In theory, Solid Gold Bomb could be selling billions of them, for they only become "real" once an order is made. It's the infinite monkey theorem, applied to products: with time, the algorithms would produce a T-shirt someone wants.

Amazon does not vet such items, and Solid Gold Bomb is too solid to care. The advent of 3D printing will create an explosion in such phantom products.

Books got there first: Amazon brims with algorithmically produced "literature." Philip M. Parker, a marketing professor, must be the most productive, erudite writer in history: Amazon lists him as author of more than 100,000 books. His secret? An algorithm to generate page-turners like "Webster's Estonian to English Crossword Puzzles" and "The 2007-2012 Outlook for Premoistened Towelettes and Baby Wipes in Greater China" ("The moist towelette is an essential part of the lunchbox, and with the new global economy, this volume is essential," reads its only review). Some of these books might be useful, but much of algorithmic literature exists for one reason: to swindle unsuspecting customers.

When the former Wired editor Chris Anderson wrote of "the long tail" -- the idea that, thanks to the Internet, companies can look beyond blockbusters and make money on obscure products -- he never warned us it would be so long and so ugly. Somehow, well-crafted niche products have surrendered to algorithmic schlock.


-- Evgeny Morozov

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February 15, 2013

On the job: too many office meetings and how to fight back

Time is a commodity. And time spent in a meeting should generate a productivity return on investment. But how often do we think about our time that way, and set expectations for meetings to produce real returns? In my experience working with Fortune 500 companies, the answer is rarely. This is just one result of a meeting-intensive culture.

Carson Tate, founder of Working Simply

January 4, 2013

GTD or simpler alternatives

GTD or simpler alternatives ? at LifeHacker in lifehacking/.