Summary of “How Breaking Bad Became a Phenomenon”

Breaking Bad was not a ratings hit, not a household name, not a show that earned a spot in the zeitgeist for several years.
A show about a guy cooking crystal meth and he’s the hero? What did I expect? When I got a call from my agent saying, “Hey, the folks at AMC want to meet with you about your project,” I said, “Which project?” That’s how far gone I was.
We thought the show would be male-skewing, so there’s forty to fifty million men who will be coming off this event, and this is what we would launch Breaking Bad into.
Looking back, there were countless moments like that where Breaking Bad shouldn’t have succeeded, but the material was strong enough to overcome it.2007 – 2008: HIGHS & LOWSOn November 5, 2007, the Writers Guild of America began a strike that would last four months, halting production on more than 60 shows.
Coverage at the time noted that the show was bucking the usual downward trend; most serialized dramas see their audience shrink over time, while Breaking Bad’s kept growing.
Aaron Paul: Breaking Bad was one of the first series people binge-watched, because the first three seasons all plopped onto Netflix at once.
Melissa Bernstein: Vince is actually a masterful marketing mind, and at every turn he had great ideas about how to make the show indelible, how to make it stand out, how to make it really specific in the marketplace.
We were putting so much energy into these little campaigns, these guerrilla tactics, that it was a shock at some point to realize, Oh my god, people are actually watching the show! We had been in a very grassroots place, thinking, How do we get five more people to watch? And the show finally just took on a momentum of its own around Season Four.Aaron Paul: We lived and breathed these characters.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Facebook’s Motivations – Stratechery by Ben Thompson”

Nearly three years ago I wrote in The Facebook Reckoning that any publisher that was not a “Destination site” – that is, a site that had a direct connection with readers – had no choice but to go along with Facebook’s Instant Article initiative, even though Facebook could change their mind at any time.
Back in 2016, on the 3Q 2016 earnings call, Facebook CFO Dave Wehner said that Facebook would soon stop growing the ad load on News Feed and that advertising growth would “Come down meaningfully.”
The third advantage is perhaps the least appreciated: buying ads on Google and Facebook is just so much easier.
For about as long as Facebook has been a going concern, the conventional wisdom about their downfall has remained largely the same: some other social network is going to come along, probably amongst young people, and take all of the attention away from Facebook.
In the U.S. the phone book is Facebook and the phone is Snapchat; in Taiwan, where I live, the phone book is Facebook and the phone is LINE. Japan and Thailand are the same, with a dash of Twitter in the former.
Another possible answer is that Facebook fears regulation, and by demonstrating the ability to self-correct and focus on what makes Facebook unique the company can avoid regulatory issues completely.
Facebook is a stand-in for the Internet’s effect broadly: were it not Facebook ruining media’s business model, it would have been some other company.
Facebook’s stated reasoning for this change only heightens these contradictions: if indeed Facebook as-is harms some users, fixing that is a good thing.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Future of Human Work Is Imagination, Creativity, and Strategy”

Their findings so far seem to conclude that the more technical the work, the more technology can accomplish it.
It’s only natural for them to ask, “Am I next? How many more days will I be employed here?” Venture capitalist Bruce Gibney explains it this way: “Jobs may not seem like ‘existential’ problems, but they are: When people cannot support themselves with work at all – let alone with work they find meaningful – they clamor for sharp changes. Not every revolution is a good revolution, as Europe has discovered several times. Jobs provide both material comfort and psychological gratification, and when these goods disappear, people understandably become very upset.”
The wise corporate leader will realize that post-technology trauma falls along two lines: how to integrate the new technology into the work flow, and how to cope with feelings that the new technology is somehow “The enemy.” Without dealing with both, even the most automated workplace could easily have undercurrents of anxiety, if not anger.
Rethink What Your Workforce Can Do. Technology will replace some work, but it doesn’t have to replace the people who have done that work.
Economist James Bessen notes, “The problem is people are losing jobs and we’re not doing a good job of getting them the skills and knowledge they need to work for the new jobs.”
A study in Australia found a silver lining in the automation of bank tellers’ work: “While ATMs took over a lot of the tasks these tellers were doing, it gave existing workers the opportunity to upskill and sell a wider ranges of financial services.”
Such new thinking will generate a whole new human resource development agenda, one quite probably emphasizing those innate human capacities that can provide a renewed strategy for success that is both technological and human.
We can choose to use AI and other emerging technologies to replace human work, or we can choose to use them to augment it.

The orginal article.

Summary of “A Breakout Branding Master Class from Glossier, Sweetgreen, Away, And”

Emily Weiss: Beauty has traditionally been brands telling customers that they have some kind of inadequacy or that they should ascribe to a specific idea of perfection.
So started with my problem, but I also wanted to build a brand that was culturally relevant.
NJ: It’s our responsibility as a brand to try to lead [customers] in a direction that we think they want to go.
FC: There’s a certain growth imperative that comes with being a cult brand.
Once your brand outpaces your business, folks walk into fundraising meetings assuming that your revenues are a certain level without even thinking.
EW: Any brand that exists on Instagram is inherently global.
FC: How do you view partnerships, and do you worry that they distort the core brand?
So we look at different verticals, look for the best brands in those industries, and then partner with them to reach people that we wouldn’t have otherwise.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why Are Millennials So Into Astrology?”

On social media, astrologers and astrology meme machines amass tens or hundreds of thousands of followers, people joke about Mercury retrograde, and categorize “The signs as …” literally anything: cat breeds, Oscar Wilde quotes, Stranger Things characters, types of french fries.
People tend to turn to astrology in times of stress.
A sincere burgeoning interest in astrology doesn’t mean people are wholesale abandoning rationality for more mystical beliefs.
Nicholas Campion, a historian of astrology, points out that the question of whether people “Believe” in astrology is both impossible to answer, and not really a useful question to ask.
People might say they don’t “Believe” in astrology, but still identify with their zodiac sign.
“Astrology is a system that looks at cycles, and we use the language of planets,” says Alec Verkuilen Brogan, a 29-year-old chiropractic student based in the Bay Area who has also studied astrology for 10 years.
Stevens’s story exemplifies a prevailing attitude among many of the people I talked to-that it doesn’t matter if astrology is real; it matters if it’s useful.
Many people offered me hypotheses to explain astrology’s resurgence.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Creative thought has a pattern of its own, brain activity scans reveal”

In new research, scientists report signature patterns of neural activity that mark out those who are most creative.
“We have identified a pattern of brain connectivity that varies across people, but is associated with the ability to come up with creative ideas,” said Roger Beaty, a psychologist at Harvard University.
Creative thinking is one of the primary drivers of cultural and technological change, but the brain activity that underpins original thought has been hard to pin down.
The scientists asked the volunteers to perform a creative thinking task as they lay inside a brain scanner.
Reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the study found distinct patterns of brain activity in the most and least creative people.
The scans suggest that more creative people can better engage both networks at once.
Now, Beaty wants to look at brain activity in different creative pursuits, such as the arts and sciences, and investigate whether training helps boost creative powers.
“A critical open question, for future research, is whether this ability to put the brain in creative mode transfers across tasks,” he said.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why willpower is overrated”

People with a lot of self-control – people who, when they happen upon a delicious food they don’t think they should eat, seemingly grin and bear the temptation until it passes – have it easy.
The idea of willpower has withered as the scientific tests for it have gotten better There are two main ways to measure a person’s level of self-control.
For many years, Inzlicht explains, psychologists assumed that the self-control measured by the questionnaire measured the same thing as the behavioral tests of willpower.
Inzlicht and his collaborators wanted to answer a simple question with rigorous methods: Do these two measurements of self-control relate to each other? That is, are people who say they are good at self-control in the broad sense actually good at summoning willpower in the moment?
What’s more, the people who exercised more effortful self-control also reported feeling more depleted.
What we can learn from people who are good at self-control So who are these people who are rarely tested by temptations? They’re doing something right.
In 2015, psychologists Brian Galla and Angela Duckworth published a paper in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, finding across six studies and more than 2,000 participants that people who are good at self-control also tend to have good habits – like exercising regularly, eating healthy, sleeping well, and studying.
“People who are good at self-control seem to be structuring their lives in a way to avoid having to make a self-control decision in the first place,” Galla tells me.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Improving Workplace Culture, One Review at a Time”

Any one review on Glassdoor, like any single restaurant review on Yelp or product review on Amazon, may be misleading, useless, or unhinged.
Glassdoor creates a bare-bones Web page for any company that gets a review, which will often appear at the top of a Google search.
The “Fake positive” review, apparently written by a management-appointed shill, is a common feature of the site.
Barry brought up another review, which Glassdoor had been sent by a British finance company.
Generally, if a boss merely disagrees with a review, his or her only option is to write a response on Glassdoor.
Krystle Neeb, a member of the flag team, read aloud a review that had been flagged by the management of an I.T. company, in which the reviewer had written, “Bleeding heart liberals such as myself may have issue with a few of their clients.” He or she disliked having to work on a project “For an anti-gay fundamentalist religious client.” A discussion ensued among the moderators.
In a message to Glassdoor about another review, headlined “Opportunity,” a user had written, “This looks fake as all get out.”
Boso scanned the review, which awarded the company five stars and claimed that senior leadership “Has done a great job diversifying the business model for long term growth and stability.” The only con was that the environment was “So fast paced and dynamic you have to stay focused on core responsibilities.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Be like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett: If you’re not spending 5 hours per week learning, you’re being irresponsible”

We spend our lives collecting, spending, lusting after, and worrying about money - in fact, when we say we “Don’t have time” to learn something new, it’s usually because we are feverishly devoting our time to earning money, but something is happening right now that’s changing the relationship between money and knowledge.
Learn how to financially invest in learning to get the highest return.
Just as we have minimum recommended dosages of vitamins, steps per day, and minutes of aerobic exercise for maintaining physical health, we need to be rigorous about the minimum dose of deliberate learning that will maintain our economic health.
Before his daughter was born, successful entrepreneur Ben Clarke focused on deliberate learning every day from 6:45 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. for five years, but when his daughter was born, he decided to replace his learning time with daddy-daughter time.
He shortened the number of hours he worked on his to do list in order to make room for his learning ritual.
Start your learning ritual today with these three steps The busiest, most successful people in the world find at least an hour to learn everyday.
Increase the results you receive from each hour of learning by using proven hacks that help you remember and apply what you learn.
There was too much information for one article, so I spent dozens of hours and created a free masterclass to help you master your learning ritual too!

The orginal article.

Summary of “Impatience: The Pitfall Of Every Ambitious Person”

That’s not what most people do in prosperous times.
What’s even better, we make poor decisions without reading a single book on investing or without getting advice from knowledgeable people.
When you want to learn skills and do good work, impatience is one of your biggest enemies.
Every time he worked on a project, he reminded himself that he would approach his work with the same vigor and tenacity that he always showed.
If your work is not hard, you’re not doing great work.
That’s a perfect way to measure your own work on a daily basis.
Only the people who work hard and try to make an impact do.
That’s the only way we can do truly great work.

The orginal article.