What do Carol Bartz and Roddy Piper have in common? A no nonsense attitude towards getting things done, and more of what I’ve read

How fitting that my reference to this blog post was my 1,000 tweet on Twitter 😉


Clip art from Office OnlineA few years ago I worked at Autodesk and had the pleasure to be there when Carol Bartz was our CEO. She’s now the CEO at Yahoo!, and each day it seems that more and more people notice.

Case in point, the post on John Battelle’s Searchblog, Carol Bartz Speaks.  

"I’m enjoying her blog posts on Yahoo Anecdotal. Check this one out, in which she talks about "cleaning house" and restructuring Yahoo (yet again, honestly, it’s like the tenth time in as many quarters, feels like):

"Finally, a note about our brand. It’s one of our biggest assets. Mention Yahoo! practically anywhere in the world, and people yodel. But in the past few years, we haven’t been as clear in showing the world what the Yahoo! brand stands for. We’re going to change that. Look for this company’s brand to kick ass again."

Honesty and frank talk from Carol? I’d expect nothing less. See this article (also available at as an example.

This reminds me of the infamous line delivered by Roddy Piper. I love her new blog. Good luck, Carol.

Also this from Kara Swisher at AllThingsD, One Last Yahoo Reorg Missive: Bartz Tells Employees What She Already Said. Again. (February 26, 2009): "Goodness gracious, make it stop! You must know by now how much BoomTown loves internal Yahoo (YHOO) memos. But this is getting ridiculous. It’s been like a flash flood after a long drought at Sunnyvale HQ today, as Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz turns on the fire hose of a whole lot of communicating. A lot. A real lot."

Also, a shout out to Rob Pegoraro from the Washington Post for his Tweet today about my past post, My Labour Day Best Buy and Apple Store Customer Experiences. You should also read my follow up to this post, "Best Buy Revisited: Buying a PC at retail isn’t as bad as I first found". In this economy retail needs to shine. See more in my Apple Store experience post, Not just planners: what you can learn at Apple Stores.

Enjoy your weekend!

Microsoft Vs. Amazon: A Battle Is Brewing – Plug Into The Cloud – InformationWeek — Posted by John Foley @ 03:41:PM | Mar, 6, 2009 — "Amazon Web Services has established itself as a leader in the cloud computing market, and Microsoft has been playing catch up. However, as Microsoft’s Azure cloud strategy falls into place, it’s sounding more like these would-be partners are on a collision path. Microsoft and Amazon aren’t talking like competitors; in fact, the opposite is true. When InformationWeek’s Charles Babcock talked to Steven Martin, Microsoft’s senior director of developer platform product management, earlier this week, Martin had this to say about Amazon offering Windows Server as a cloud service: "We’re rooting for them. We want them to be successful."

Marissa Mayer On Charlie Rose: The Future Of Google, Future Of Search by Michael Arrington on March 6, 2009 — "Charlie Rose, who’s been focusing lately on Silicon Valley personalities, interviewed Google Vice President Marissa Mayer last night. In a long and broad ranging discussion, Marissa talks about the product development cycle at Google as well as the future of search and other key areas of technology."

How I Edit My Interviews. –Featuring Steve Wozniak’s Joke About Steve Jobs : Featuring Steve Wozniak’s Joke About Steve Jobs Watch me edit, step-by-step

Doodling increases your recall – "Andrade’s findings, published Thursday in Applied Cognitive Psychology, are an interesting wrinkle on cognitive load theory: The mind has a limited amount of attention to give and, once occupied, stops processing other stimuli. Cognitive load is exploited by magicians, whose verbal and physical flourishes distract from sleight-of-hand. It also explains why driving while talking on a hands-free headset is no safer than driving while holding a phone. And it could be the reason why doodling is so much better than daydreaming."

Build and organize a better desk — "My old desk was some ikea piece of crap pressboard thing. Looked like this: "Feel free to peruse that dir for more photos of what my desk has looked like. "I decided to build a desk using two solid maple filing cabinets we had purchased and a solid maple tabletop I bought from a local hardwood supplier. "Here’s how that went." 

TwitteReader – Mark Twitter messages as read and unread Keep track of what you have already read from who you follow

Want something to worry about? Just look up |Notes from the Field | Robert X. Cringely® | InfoWorld – March 06, 2009 — "Forget the economy, your job, or your computer. Space is the place where the real scary stuff happens. Time to pay attention to what’s going on overhead. "And yet, those problems are miniscule compared to what almost happened earlier this week, when a 100-foot-wide hunk of rock whizzed past Earth, coming within 48,000 miles (or roughly 1/5th of the way to the moon) before passing on. "It’s like God threw a snowball at us and missed, but just barely."

Also see this post from the PLANETARY SOCIETY, INDIA: 2009 DD45 – New Asteroid Discovered on 27th Feb – Flyby 63,500 km 2nd March, 09 – "Will miss earth by 63,500 K.m. : Whats interesting is that this object will pass close from earth at 63,500 km at 19:14 p.m.(13.44 UTC) today (2nd March,09) evening. So it also means that we dont need to worry because its not going to impact. Can you spot this object ? Kelly Beatty says Even though it’s small, likely no more than 100 feet (30 meters) across, it’ll brighten to magnitude 10½ at its closest — easily within reach of an 8-inch backyard telescope Further he says this isn’t the closest "near-miss" asteroidal fragment on record. According to the MPC, tiny 2004 FU162 skirted just 4,000 miles from us on March 31, 2004."

Jan Muehlfeit, Chairman of Microsoft Europe, interview: Baltic Business News – Jan responds to readers’ questions for the Baltic Business News. Muehlfeit provides detailed and interesting answers to the wide variety of questions provided which cover topics such as cyber crime, technology helping companies through the recession and the future for Microsoft in Europe, giving readers an insight into Microsoft’s strategy and plans for the Central and Eastern European region. Mar 4, 2009

Yahoo CEO Talks Microsoft, Google Maps By Nicholas Kolakowski 2009-03-03 – "Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz discussed a variety of topics at the Morgan Stanley Technology Conference in San Francisco, including potential negotiations with Microsoft, the amount of e-mail that Yahoo deals with on a daily basis, and her own preference for using Google Maps over Yahoo’s."

Writings on the wall: Diamond TIP: Word completion annoyance – Tuesday, July 1, 2008 Diamond TIP: Word completion annoyance – "It is nice of HTC to add a couple of its own SIP (i.e. Compact QWERTY, Full QWERTY and Phone Keypad) in the Diamond that even comes with word completion feature. But it isn’t nice of them to do this at the expense of the built-in ones – Have you noticed that the word completion feature in the built-in SIPs (like keyboard and block recognizer) now no longer works? What ticks me off most is that the settings for word completion for these stock SIPs still exist in the options screen hence giving the false impression that it must be something I did which caused it not to work. (That’s a -1 for you HTC)"

Ballmer’s take on the economy, investment and innovation – TechFlash: Seattle’s Technology News Source By Todd Bishop on March 4, 2009 at 8:36 PST "Speaking to technology chiefs from big public agencies today, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said he believes continued investment in technology will be critical for jump-starting the economy after it goes through a "reset." He acknowledged investors’ concerns about Microsoft’s $9 billion research-and-development budget but reiterated that he considers the spending key for the company’s long-term growth."

Tell me more about Windows Live Movie Maker beta – "Windows Live Movie Maker (beta) is a first generation product. That is, instead of adding new features to the original Windows Movie Maker, we started over and have been building the all new Windows Live Movie Maker from the ground up to meet the changing needs of working with digital photos and videos today. If you haven’t tried it yet, we hope you’ll download Windows Live Movie Maker beta. We’d love it if you’d let us know what you think about our work so far, and what else you’d like to see in the final release. We’ll share more information about the final release of Windows Live Movie Maker as soon as it becomes available."

Recession takes its emotional toll on cities – MSN Real Estate – "To get a sense of where the pain points are greatest, came up with a list of the 20 unhappiest cities. These are major cities that were ranked based on their rates of suicide, depression, divorce, unemployment, job loss, population loss, crime, amount of green space and cloudy days. gave most emphasis to suicide and depression rates, crime and economic factors. The city with the highest overall score in our index was Portland, the beautiful Oregon city that also has very high depression and suicide rates. St. Louis, New Orleans and Detroit were high on the list, largely because of their rates of crime, unemployment and population loss. Other cities such as Las Vegas and Jacksonville, Fla., ranked high because of their suicide rates and difficult economic conditions."

Microsoft Not Hurting Creative Suite, Adobe CTO Says – – Business Technology Leadership By Elizabeth Montalbano and Chris Kanaracus March 04, 2009 — IDG News Service — "Adobe Systems may be feeling the pinch from the recession, but it insists that it isn’t losing business to Microsoft. Microsoft’s Expression suite of tools for graphic and Web designers has had no impact on its chief target, Adobe Systems’ Creative Suite, Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch said in an interview this week. “We haven’t seen any impact, really, from Expression on our business," Lynch said."

Tapping The Tech Hive – Weekly Q&A feat. Tim O’Reilly – Bio: Tim O’Reilly generates Internet ideas and analysis like others exhale. Since before O’Reilly Media published The Whole Internet User’s Guide in 1992, Tim O’Reilly has been an advocate and prognosticator of the emerging digital world. He shares with the DailyGeek what technologies get him through the week.

YouTube Surpasses 100 Million U.S. Viewers for the First Time – "Americans’ Time Spent Viewing Jumps 15 Percent versus Previous Month RESTON, VA, March 4, 2009 – comScore (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released January 2009 data from the comScore Video Metrix service showing that U.S. Internet users viewed 14.8 billion online videos during the month, representing an increase of 4 percent versus December 2008.YouTube led the growth charge, accounting for 91 percent of the incremental gain in the number of videos viewed versus December, as it surpassed 100 million viewers for the first time."

Mods: The Great Pyramid PC Would Make Tutankhamun Jealous

10 best companies for customer service – MSN Money – In tough times, it’s harder and more important to keep your customers happy. BusinessWeek picked the companies that are doing the best. BusinessWeek Feb 24, 2009

David Pogue’s Gadget List of 2008 – Pogue’s Posts Blog – – August 7, 2008, 4:22 pm David Pogue’s Gadget List of 2008 Two years ago, totally strapped for a column idea, I resorted to raiding my own e-mail Inbox. There I found a reader request: “I would love to see a feature where you list what you personally use. Call it Pogue’s List or something. It would be great to see what someone as plugged in as you uses personally. Everything tech — watch, laptop, TV, car, digital camera, film camera, like that.” What’s really surprising to me is how many readers have written to request an update of that list, especially lately. Actually, the time is probably right. This year alone, I’ve bought several of the products that I reviewed in my column. So here it is: Pogue’s List 2008."

Randy Gage :: Randy’s Blog – Dying to Live or Living to Die – By Randy Gage February 7th, 2009 I’m doing something unusual today, in that I’m going to post the “Randy’s Rants” newsletter that went out today. I have been deluged with messages on the impact it has had on people. And I realize that not all of you blog readers gets the Rants. And I think the message is an important one for success and prosperity. I wish it was a happier message, but that’s not how all life lessons come."

Bre Pettis | I Make Things – Bre Pettis Blog – The Cult of Done Manifesto – Mar 3, 2009 "Dear Members of the Cult of Done. I present to you a manifesto of done. This was written in collaboration with Kio Stark in 20 minutes because we only had 20 minutes to get it done."

Richard Sprague WebLog : eComm 09 virtually – "Last year’s eComm was a wonderful way to see the latest cool stuff going on in the field of new communications technology and (more importantly) meet the people who are behind it all. The conference site, unfortunately, had poor internet coverage and many of us were unable to blog about it. And if you can’t blog in real time, it loses a lot of the fun. (That’s one reason Twitter is becoming so popular)."

From Small Tech Show, New Ideas – – "As Demo Gathering Shrinks, Emphasis Grows on Saving Time or Money, By DON CLARK, March 2, 2009 A twice-yearly technology showcase has attracted a smaller group of entrepreneurs, but demonstrators this week are plowing ahead with new products and services — most aimed at saving people time and money."

How I cut my television bill in half – Smart Spending Blog – MSN Money – Posted Feb 23 2009, 08:27 AM by Karen Datko – "I’ve had several requests lately to update my two-year quest to find cheap alternatives to cable television. In March of 2007, Kris and I were paying $65.82 for a deluxe digital cable package that we rarely used. I wrote at that time that "$65.82 a month isn’t a fortune, but it’s a lot of money to pay for something that doesn’t get used. If we were big TV watchers, maybe the cost could be justified. But we aren’t. And it can’t." To save money, we cut our cable to just the basic channels, which reduced our bill to $11.30 a month. We also began to use the iTunes Music Store to subscribe to the shows that we wanted to watch. And over the past year, I’ve become a fan of Hulu, an online service that allows users to watch many past and current shows for free. Here’s an overview of the tools we use, and how much money we’ve managed to save."

Stanford’s Entrepreneurship Corner: Tony Perkins, AlwaysOn – Tim Draper, Draper Fisher Jurvetson – What is the Next Big Thing? – "Three Silicon Valley dealmakers – Tony Perkins, CEO of AlwaysOn; Tim Draper, Founder and Managing Director of Draper, Fisher Jurvetson; and Michael Moe, Founding Partner of ThinkEquity – discuss the evolutions in online media, the power of partnerships, and other next-generation opportunities for the global marketplace."

I wonder how brands like Zappos and JetBlue keep track of their brands on social networks like Twitter and Facebook? Tools? Techniques? – FriendFeed

Richard Sprague: Write like me, Sunday, February 15, 2009 — "I’ve hate handwriting. I’ve been using keyboards since I learned to write and my fingers just don’t want to use a pen. But there are too many occasions when people expect the “personal” touch of a handwritten document, so I couldn’t get out of it completely. Until now. Using the free font-generation software at, I have a whole collection of handwriting fonts that let me give a personalized touch to computer-generated greeting cards and other documents I used to have to break out the pen for. I even made a “handwritten” CD label for a Valentines present. "The process couldn’t be simpler. The site is completely free; you don’t even need to register. Just print a one-sheet template (don’t bother printing the second page, unless you care about special foreign characters). Scan it and upload to the site. Double-check that it looks right, and download to your hard drive. Presto – you have a font you can now use." – March 1, 2009 "If you want to hear about the pending 4G mobile technology future, Cisco has a special site dedicated to talking about it, plus a snazzy video"

Circuit City Can’t Locate Any Help January 16th, 2009 "Circuit City announced today that it will be going out of business. According to the Associated Press, America’s second-largest electronics retailer will be closing 567 stores and laying off over 30,000 employees. The company was unable to reach a deal with a new buyer or secure debt refinancing. Mexican billionaire Ricardo Salinas Pliego, had been named as a potential buyer of the troubled retailer, but an agreement was not reached."

Seth’s Blog: Raising money for charity – "Squidoo is giving $2 per vote (up to $80,000 total) to charity. Visit this page, pick your charity and you’re done. There is no catch. One vote per person, feel free to organize mass group voting. Thanks to every single person who helped us raise this money. More than 300,000 lensmasters and more than 80,000,000 visitors to the site contributed to our ability to make such a substantial contribution. A nickel, a dollar, a dime… it adds up, drip, drip, drip. If the real world is about big wins, the web is about a long tail of little victories. PS If you visit the Squidblog, you’ll see this post from Megan: People online are real people."

Seattle-area PC builder goes it alone with Windows 7 upgrade – TechFlash: Seattle’s Technology News Source By Todd Bishop on February 27, 2009 at 4:28 PST — "With Microsoft’s Windows 7 preview getting positive reviews, and Windows Vista riding into the sunset, the computer industry is enduring a lame-duck period — that moment in time when people wait to buy for fear of missing out on the next big thing. And the economy isn’t exactly helping, either. Microsoft and PC makers are expected to juice up the market later this year with offers of free or discounted upgrades to Windows 7 for people who buy Windows Vista machines in advance of the new operating system’s release. But in the meantime, one Seattle-area computer builder is taking matters into its own hands."

unlimited magazine – coming and going with four global professionals by Benjamin Leszcz Friday, 13 February 2009, TARA HUNT Co-founder of Citizen Agency "Hunt, who lives in San Francisco, promotes her vision for the future of marketing through the internet consulting firm Citizen Agency, which she co-founded in 2006; in public speaking appearances; on her Twitter feed; in her upcoming book, The Whuffie Factor: Using the Power of Social Networks to Build Your Business; and, of course, on her blog,"

Don’t Be a Marketing Loser – Read This Book | Clix Marketing PPC Blog – January 10th, 2008 David Szetela "Hey, all you young online marketing turks and turkettes: think you know it all? Think PPC/SEO/SEM stuff is so brand new that you have nothing to learn from the past? Well, the truth is that online marketing/advertising is mainly just plain ol’ direct response advertising – the art and science of using words to persuade a “reader” to take an action. Direct response advertising was invented over a century ago. Even modern-seeming concepts like testing creative, measuring response and refining ad copy are documented in hoary old nuggets like one of the direct marketing bibles, Claude Hopkins’ Scientific Advertising. But I like you. You’ve got gumption and spunk. So I’ve got a gift for you – a PDF file with the full text of Hopkins’ book, now in the public domain, downloadable here."

Being a Personal Brand – Posted On Feb 26, 2009 — "Groundswell can be positive or negative for any organization, or for that matter an individual. This is what makes social media so unique, and in my opinion so special. Over the past few weeks I have seen a swell of discussion regarding my friend Scott Monty. There were some critical of Scott, but to me it was a good chance to have further conversation on the topic. First of all we all represent our employers whether we are at work at the time or on Twitter. If you were a sales person, and you made a comment that was questionable, and a client saw it, do you think anyone would say oh he was on twitter at home so that is ok? Another aspect to this discussion, as David Armano pointed out in his post, is the fact that Scott Monty already had a personal brand prior to joining the Ford team. It is probably part of the reason why they selected him to lead their social media effort."


Tags: articles, what I read, blogs.

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