Random December Musings

This month has been a bit of a slog. But there is a clear path to everything being turned in by 5 p.m. tomorrow, people seem to be on the mend health-wise, the Christmas cards are (mostly) mailed, the presents are (mostly) bought and we have not yet run out of milk. So that’s good.

A few random links and ideas:

Philanthropy magazine has a story from Kay Hymowitz on Parenting the Privileged, and how wealthy families do or don’t pass along their money values.

The Executive Time Use Project is producing some fascinating data on how CEOs spend their time. There’s a summary of preliminary research on Indian CEOs posted on the site; I wrote about the Italian CEO data in a piece for Fortune last year.  

Speaking of India and Italy, here’s a brainteaser for long holiday car trips: how many countries can you name that start with the letter I? There are more of them than seems probable.

BusinessWeek has an article arguing it’s a man-vs-machine recovery. Per the piece, if Okun’s law, which defines the relationship between rising productivity and rising employment, was holding now, unemployment would be around 1%. The article claims that robots can write a better basic game summary than journeyman sportswriters, which I find intriguing. I would love to have a robot crank out some of my first drafts, which I could then polish. I write more about this thought at CBS MoneyWatch (Could a robot do your job?)

Also at CBS MoneyWatch: Write the next chapter of your career story. This is my attempt to weave together thoughts on reading Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children and an interview with Aquabotix CEO Durval Tavares. Perhaps a robot could have done this better.

The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation commissioned 5 white papers from the Foundation Strategy Group on schools using blended learning: Rocketship schools, Summit Public Schools, KIPP Empower LA, the Alliance Technology and Math Science High School, and the FirstLine schools in New Orleans. Links to all the white papers — which are more readable than white papers usually are — can be found here.

The Economist published a lovely obituary on Dave Brubeck. The essay is written in a bit of a jazz cadence itself, playing on rhythms of language. I once got to sing in a choir that performed with Brubeck. It was pretty awesome.

This may be the last post for a bit, so I hope everyone has a good holiday break!


One thought on “Random December Musings

  1. Enjoyed your link to the study about Italian CEOs. I know that people enjoy the stereotype about lazy Italians but successful CEOs as a group are obviously hard-working or work smart rather! We have a family friend (Italian) who runs a successful company yet when he’s off, he’s off. He rarely talks about his work unless prodded. I know so many Americans who talk about work and groan about long hours and they’re not anywhere near his level of responsibility. As you stated, people lie and work is a state of mind.

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