Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention

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Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Rednod, GigaOM, Human 2.0, the author of Complete Web Monitoring and Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks), Hugh McGuire (The Book Oven, LibriVox, Bite-Sized Edits, Media Hacks) and I decided that every week or so the three of us are going to share one link for each other (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we’re recommending to one another:

  1. How Microbes Defend and Define Us – The New York Times. "I recently learned of the Whooping Cough epidemic that’s sweeping California, which some suspect is linked to Hollywood’s misguided attacks on vaccines. Vaccination remains a miracle of medicine, and it works precisely because it enlists our natural defenses – nature fighting nature. Here’s a rather startling example of nature at work: using stool transplants to fight c. difficile infections. Yep, I found a way to include a link on poop." (Alistair for Hugh).
  2. TV’s Crowning Moment of Awesome – Esquire. "This is a fascinating piece from Esquire on the man who ‘broke’ The Price is Right. It serves as a reminder that many formats we take for granted, such as game shows, crumble in the face of technology. Watch a thriller from 20 years ago and you realize pretty quickly that the plot would collapse if someone had a cellphone, or Google, or Facebook at their disposal. In this case, Tivo, advertising patterns, and a reluctance to change left The Price Is Right vulnerable to mischief and hackery. Plus, it’s a great read." (Alistair for Mitch).
  3. The Creativity Crisis – Newsweek.  "A couple of weeks ago, Alistair’s link for me was the Wikipedia article for the Flynn Effect, which describes the upward creep of IQ scores. But my link this week isn’t so positive: it’s about the recent downward creep in US Creativity Quotient scores. Devised by  Professor E. Paul Torrence in the 1950s, the Creativity Quotient tests measure kids’ creative abilities, asking questions such as: ‘how would you improve this toy firetruck?’ The CQ is a great indicator of lifetime creativity, more than three times stronger than IQ. That’s the good news. Also good news: US CQ scores went up every year until 1990. Bad news: they’ve been dropping since 1990. Why, and what can we, as parents, as society do about it?" (Hugh for Alistair).
  4. Plan Bee to Boost the Economy – Design Council. "In counterpoint to my previous link, here is a compelling vision for making creativity the centre of our economic, and educational structures. Also a here is a passionate plea to put the customer and the citizen ‘at the very centre of everything we create.’ Some examples are particular to the UK, but the overall message valuable to anyone who likes to think of a better future." (Hugh for Mitch).
  5. Internet has ‘not become the great leveller’ – BBC. "In a world where we’re getting most of our news and information from the people we are connected to in our Twitter and Facebook feeds, is it not possible that our world/global view and perspective is becoming narrower because of the Internet? This is something I’ve Blogged about on countless occasions (by following only your RSS feed, you lose all serendipity and diversity because you will naturally follow those who have similar values to yours). It’s also something that Harvard academic Ethan Zuckerman argued at the TED Global event this past week. Read on for a new perspective on what the Internet may be doing to your perspective on the world…" (Mitch for Alistair).
  6. Tweet Less, Kiss More – The New York Time. "During breakfast yesterday we got into an interesting conversation (along with Julien Smith – co-author with Chris Brogan of the best-selling business book Trust Agents) about how much attention we give to our technology, and how much we use it to cover our own social fears that we may look ‘unbusy’. The iPhone has made us all hop out of dinner parties only to find ourselves checking Twitter and email in the bathroom while real human beings are connecting to one another an arm’s length away. Why are we like this? What have we become? In this op-ed piece, Bob Herbert, asks the same questions." (Mitch for Hugh).

Now, it’s your turn: in the comment section below pick one thing that you saw this week that inspired you and share it.