Friday Links 08-03-05

From the Web

I’ve stockpiled two weeks worth of links for today. Last week was the release of Learn More, Study Less, which replaced the normal edition of Friday Links.

  • The Art of Pseudo-Skimming – Cal writes about how to pseudo-skim. The idea is similar to my interpretation of speed reading–that you need to control your speed based on the content.
  • My Favorite Liar – “One of my favorite professors in college was a self-confessed liar. … ‘Now I know some of you have already heard of me, but for the benefit of those who are unfamiliar, let me explain how I teach. Between today until the class right before finals, it is my intention to work into each of my lectures … one lie. Your job, as students, among other things, is to try and catch me in the Lie of the Day.’ And thus began our ten-week course.” An excellent story about the value of critical thinking.
  • Quit Blaming Your Parents – Blogger and life coach Tim, makes an interesting point that people are more likely to attribute their flaws to their parents, but not their strengths. I don’t thank my parents nearly enough for the fantastic environment I was raised in.
  • How to Beat the Competition – Steve Pavlina shares his thoughts on how to beat the competition–by doing what they won’t/can’t. I think this idea applies beyond business. If you want to become unusually good at anything you need to do two things: (1) work harder than everyone else (2) do the things other people are too afraid/uncreative to do.
  • Free! Why $0.00 is the Future of Business. Another ideavirus from Chris Anderson, editor of Wired. Despite my recent product launch and post about why I don’t (illegally) download music, I’m a huge supporter of this strategy. 90% of the content I produce is completely free and 99% of the people that make use of my content will never pay me a dime, yet it still works.
  • Notes from Warren Buffet Meeting. Search for the sentence starting with “I am slow to make friends because”. In that section, Buffet talks about the importance of a tight group of loyal friends instead of a vast pool of acquaintances. Hat tip: Ben Casnocha.

From the Archives

7 Ways to Live a More Balanced Life – A tips list I wrote last June. I’ve been working intensely the past few weeks with the launch of my new book and a few other projects coming up. I probably need to take some of my own advice!

From the Shelf

The Wealth of Nations – This book, what most consider to be the foundation of modern economics, is my next step in the journey in trying to read more classics. Here are some great quotes:

  • On the division of labor (and batching!)…“A man commonly saunters a little in turning his hand from one sort of employment to another. When he first begins the new work he is seldom very keen and hearty; his mid, as they say, does not go to it, and for some time he rather trifles than applies it to good purpose.”
  • On the free market… “The natural effort oevery individual is to better his own condition, when suffered to exert itself with freedom and security, is so powerful a principle that it is alone, and without any assistance, not only capable of carrying on the society to wealth and prosperity, but of surmounting a hundred impertinent obstructions which the folly of human laws too often encumbers its operations; thought the effect of these obstructions is always more or less either to encroach upon its freedom or to diminish its security.”

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