The symbol of snowman is ☃ (Unicode: 0x2603). (thanks, Null)
I'm Feeling Lucky in Bengali: "Bhagyoban Money Korchhi" (thanks, Finn)
Wasps aren't animals. (thanks, YSA)
How Pixar Adds a New School of Thought to Disney is a fantastic article in the New York Times about how Pixar shunned the Hollywood style freelance/contract working model in favor of building long term talent. You're going to see this article linked everywhere because everyone in the world who takes pride in their work can relate to the lessons herein.
"The problem with the Hollywood model is that it's generally the day you wrap production that you realize you've finally figured out how to work together," Mr. Nelson said. "We've made the leap from an idea-centered business to a people-centered business. Instead of developing ideas, we develop people. Instead of investing in ideas, we invest in people. We're trying to create a culture of learning, filled with lifelong learners. It's no trick for talented people to be interesting, but it's a gift to be interested. We want an organization filled with interested people."
The title of the article is a little misleading since Pixar obviously hasn't added much to Disney in the six days since the merger became official. As a movie and animation lover, here's hoping that some of these ideas find their way into the notoriously worker-unfriendly Disney workflow.
There's a nice article in the Wall Street Journal about how delicately Brokeback Mountain was marketed. The goal was not to draw controversy, but rather to avoid it. The strategy worked, and Brokeback is one of the biggest hits this year. They also played very close attention to the social "microclimates" of New York City, bringing a little chaos theory into their marketing ideas. Me likey.
Like microclimates in Napa Valley that can produce dramatically different wines, neighborhoods in Manhattan can draw entirely different audiences: Chelsea attracts gay viewers, the Village students, the Lincoln Center-area affluent boomers. Word of mouth from a Manhattan opening can determine with what audience a film succeeds or fails.
Normally, 'Brokeback' would have opened in downtown theaters in the SoHo-East Village areas -- typical for an art-house film. Instead, on its opening weekend Dec. 9, Mr. Foley placed 'Brokeback' into a megaplex in Chelsea, another uptown at Lincoln Center, and only one near Greenwich Village. 'I didn't want New York to say this is an art-house film,' says Mr. Foley. 'I wanted a mix of voices talking about it to defeat it being called 'a gay cowboy movie.' '
Being a romantic, I also think that the movie does well because the crafting of the cinematography, editing and sound is well worth repeated viewings on the large screen. The incredible acting from top to bottom helps too - I think people are taken aback when they see actors who really act.
Yojimbo is a new snippets-saving app for OS X. I've been enjoying it and I'll probably stick with it. It allows you to drag text files, text snippets or URLs into an unobtrusive sidebar, which adds them to your "library." Your Library is a sortable Mail-like view of all your snippets, and you can sort them into sub-libraries that are like iTunes playlists.
I've tried a bunch of note taking solutions but never quite stuck with one. vi was my old favorite when I was on Unix and a terminal was always open, but that's often not the case on OS X. BBedit is fast, and I love the diff tool and other flourishes, but keeping "notes.txt" open all the time felt ... wasteful. Voodoo Pad was fast and fun, but I always forgot to open it, and then I would have versions that were out of sync. I felt like I had to maintain it more than I wanted to. Most commonly I had a file of URLs and short snippets "to sort," but that was obviously suboptimal. I know people love and swear by DevonThing, but it just seemed like overkill for my needs, which are "keep" and "search." The absolute best-in-class notekeeping app in the world is still Microsoft OneNote, but Yojimbo is the first piece of OS X software that deserves mention in the same sentence as the heretofore undisputed champion.
There are some more features I'd like to see. I suppose this is a wish list of features that would be true of any of the above apps as well, but like I said Yojimbo is currently closest to my ideal.
Didn't mean to spend so long on that. While writing this post I realized that I really want a better "snippet" management app. All told, Yojimbo 1.0 is a great start.
I always envied Stewart's subtitle I AM SHARING THIS WITH YOU, it perfectly captures the essence of blogging. Now that Anil has stolen it, I can too. I've been real sick the last week, bedridden. So all I have today are links, but it's still good blogging.
The trouble with Whole Foods: "I know I'm fast and focused and aggressive. That's one of the reasons I *like* living in NYC, I feel like I'm surrounded my people -- except when I go to the Union Square Whole Foods!"
I'm fast and focused and aggressive too. But when I go to Whole Foods a spell comes over me. Look at all those salsas! Can we buy a sampler pack? They have seven or eight different kinds of wasabi. Who knew? And the aisles are just not wide enough for two carts - so while you think you are not blocking people, you definitely are.
I'll try and get better, I promise.
"If y'all can't cook, this doesn't concern you."
— Kevin Garnett