Monday, February 25, 2008

Bitch is the New Black

Tina Fey is absolutely brilliant. Tina returned to host SNL this past weekend and took back her position as Weekend Update anchor. (TG the writer's strike has come to an end). Talking directly to the audience in a tight shot, she whipped out the best stump speech for Hillary that I've heard. Unfortunately the video has been pulled from YouTube and I couldn't find it on NBC's site but here's the transcript I found on MyDD:


FEY: And finally, the most important Women’s News item there is, we have our first serious female presidential candidate in Hillary Clinton.

And yet, women have come so far as feminists, that they don’t feel obligated to vote for a candidate just because she’s a woman.

Women today feel perfectly free to make whatever choice Oprah tells them to.

Which raises the question, why are people abandoning Hillary for Obama?

Some say that they’re put off by the fact that Hillary can’t control her husband, and that we would end up with co-presidents.

‘Cause that would be terrible, having two intelligent, qualified people working together to solve problems. Ugh.

Why would you let Starsky talk to Hutch? I wanna watch that show, Starsky.

You know, what is it, America? What is it, are you weirded out that they’re married?

‘Cause I can promise you that they are having exactly as much sex with each other as George Bush and Jeb Bush are.

Then there is the physical scrutiny of her physical appearance.

Rush Limbaugh, the Jeff Conaway of right wing radio, said that he doesn’t think America is ready to watch their president quote “turn into an old lady in front of them.” Really?

They didn’t seem to mind when Ronald Reagan did that.

Maybe what bothers me the most is that people say that Hillary is a bitch.

Let me say something about that: Yeah, she is.

And so am I and so is this one. (pointing to Amy Poehler)

POEHLER: Yeah, deal with it.

FEY: Know what? Bitches get stuff done.

(Amy says yeah and starts nodding her head, together they get in a rhythm, with Amy saying in response, more yeahs, uh huhs, with a 'you go girl' style)

Like back in grammar school,

they could have had priests teaching you but, no,

they had those tough old nuns who slept on cots

and who could hit ya and you HATED those bitches

But at the end of the school year

you sure KNEW the capital of Vermont!

So COME ON Texas and Ohio

Get on board, it's not too late!...


Friday, February 22, 2008

Academy Award blogularity

Just wrote up a blog entry analyzing what the blog crowd thinks about the movies and individuals nominated for the Academy Awards on Sunday night. We built out topics that covered each movie/individual that also talked about the Awards. We were then able to pull out the ones for each topic that favored the movie/individual versus whether the author thought they would win the award. We also did one case where we weighted the blog influencers more in this voting scheme. There were some pretty interesting results. I've posted the best movie here. To check out the full listing go to Collective Intellect blog.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

fuck it, I'll fund that

Was just sent this hilarious post on t-shirts for VC's. The site is for real. Too funny. I especially liked the story at the end about how David Cowan at Bessemer Venture Partners passed on google. I also noticed that they have an homage to my friend Brad Feld with a "treadputer" shirt.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Incredible Mii

I was playing the Wii this weekend with my daughter. It turns out she is fascinated by creating Mii's at least as much as playing the games. There is endless body hacking potential and just like real life we're never quite satisfied with the way we look. There's also a Mii parade so if you're a networked Wii then your Mii's can wander off to other Wii's and join their parades. At one point Emma saw a couple of bubbles appear over two Mii's just milling around. Perhaps they talk to one another when we're away? The Singularity is near and it has a jaunty bounce.

internal dialogue at work

I've been slowly increasing meditation time each week and am now doing morning and night. I can only seem to stay focused on my breath for a few seconds when my mind starts to wander. At this point, quieting my mind against the onslaught of hypertext hyperthought is daunting. My only hope is in the fact that I do recognize that it wanders and can bring it back. I've been counting my breaths to 21 and starting over to try to focus and this seems to help but then I will inevitably start to focus on the counting of the breaths instead of the breath itself.

I'm an information junkie so everything captures my attention and nothing holds it. Since beginning the meditation practice I've noticed this at work and with other tasks as well. I can't just hold myself to the task at hand. My mind is racing along the thousand things I need to do in my personal and work life. How will I get them all done? Oh, I forgot about that task and it needs to be done today. Drop the current task and focus on the new one. Someone calls, someone twitters, or im's or drops by my desk. And the process starts all over again.

The last time I was in meditation class, two weeks ago, the instructor talked about being in the present moment for each thing we do and used driving as an example. We often put ourselves on autopilot while driving and are rarely present unless something out of the ordinary happens. The instruction was to really think about driving while driving. I need to put this into action at work to fully engage a task, driving other thoughts from my mind before moving on.

Another class tonight. I need it :)

one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, ...

Saturday, February 09, 2008

What's up with bathroom attendants

I guess this is rant day, since following my time suck post I have a not so serious question about bathroom attendants. What is the deal with you guys? What purpose do you serve? I'm pretty sure I can get the soap out and turn on the faucet for myself. I do it often. And can I please get a towel that you haven't touched? Thanks very much. And now I'm supposed to tip you?

I know you guys have to make a living but come on.

Time Suck #3: Parking

Holy *%&(((^$$$&^ what a pain in the ass it has become to park at DIA. The last time I parked there (which I do practically every week) I drove through all of the west side short term parking, spending about 15-20 minutes trying to find a spot. I finally exited the parking structure to go find a spot in long term which was also full. I then had to go park at the off airport long term parking lot and take a bus in. You might note that this is just a special case of the driving time suck, but it can actually be infinitely more frustrating since you drive around in pointless circles thus aggravating time suck into time suck rage.

I'm not sure what the solution is other than to say, save the planet, save your sanity, and if possible take public transport. I have not taken this advice myself but am seriously considering it.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Money:Tech 2008 Panel

I sat on the "Building a Better Information Beast" panel at O'Reilly's Money:Tech conference this week in NY. Other participants were Randall Winn of Capital IQ, Kevin Pomplun of SkyGrid, Renny Monaghan of and moderated by Rob Passarella of Bear Stearns. The panel was a good one and Rob was a very engaging moderator. I'm still not quite sure why Salesforce was on the panel but what the hell right? Capital IQ is an obvious choice for a next generation Bloomberg. They have most of the data, can acquire what they don't have, can move faster than Bloomberg, smart guys, etc. SkyGrid is in the midst of closing their A round and want to be the unstructured information aggregator, probably most directly competive with InfoNGen. Near the end of our discussion Rob asked the panel how all of this would come together. Would companies need to assemble it themselves out of the pieces or will someone emerge that will bring it all together. The obvious answer is the latter. It's too big of a market, too big of an opportunity for someone not to put this all together. The big question is when. The data companies need to make their data more open and "mashable." and then will need some way to link context between the data sets. The obvious answer for the financial market is by ticker+exchange or some more consistent code like a cusip since tickers change from time to time. This is a fairly complicated problem with unstructured data however since you need to determine whether what people are talking about should be assigned to a specific ticker. For instance if someone is talking about Chinese manufactured pet food, should you assign this to all pet food tickers? Should you just assign to the pet food tickers that private label the Chinese manufacturer's product? Should you not assign to a ticker at all? As it turns out contextual integration is fuzzy. There needs to be a variable association from tight to loose that we commonly refer to as relevance in search. You can also think of this as "relationship strength." We've attempted to do this with our ranking engine at Collective Intellect but in order for this to work in a mashable way we will all need to agree on a common key in the information taxonomy and a normalized value for relationship strength in order to bring all of this information together in a meaningful way. We're getting there and work at companies like Metaweb are helping to think through this but I'm afraid we're still years away.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

There Will Be Blood

The movie was amazing. Daniel Day Lewis is an artist. I also thought Paul Dano was good as the preacher, although the symmetrical lashing he gives Daniel Day Lewis' character in the church is not nearly as powerful repayment as the scene where Daniel Day Lewis promises to bury the preacher much earlier in the movie slapping him down into the mud thick with the oil they both need. The dialogue is spare and the moments of silence leave you on edge, sort of like Cage's 4'33" piece. The soundtrack is wild, going from manic percussion to somber violin. It was extremely effective but unlike any movie I can put my finger on. This movie will have you on the edge of your seat for the full 2.5 hours and leaves you with a sense of despair, not necessarily about life, as you get with No Country For Old Men, but for the diametrical characters and choices they make living on the edge of their belief systems.

I'm Finished...

pull your banner ads until google does a better job