Slingshot

…In Slingshot, you can’t view an incoming “shot” until you send a shot back to the sender.

Facebook Slingshot is much more than a Snapchat clone

Sounds like a great way to try to juice your arbitrary “engagement” numbers to me.

Constraints Are Good

The track record of software startups that raise gigantic first rounds (say, 30MM+) is pretty bad.

Sam Altman

Square Cash

Today, Square launched a new free peer-to-peer money sending via e-mail service called Square Cash:

With Square Cash, individuals no longer need to write checks, pay ATM fees or wait for forgotten loans from friends. Customers simply send an e-mail to the person they’re paying, and after the recipient enters their debit card number, money is directly transferred to their bank account.

I've got to say, this looks pretty slick. I would like some more details on the security aspects of the system but it's nice to see the USA finally catching up a bit with the rest of the world in the realm of personal financial services.

Apocalypse Now Redux (2001)

Note: This post is part of on ongoing series in which I'm watching a lot of movies.

In 2001, director Francis Ford Coppola and editor Walter Murch released an extended version of Apocalypse Now called Apocalypse Now Redux. The new version adds an additional 49 minutes to an already pretty long movie, bumping the runtime all the way to 202 minutes. I'm not ashamed to say it took me two sittings to make it through.

I didn't actually intend to get the Redux version and I still haven't seen the original cut. Perhaps someday I'll get it and compare the two, but for now, on to the bullets!

Apocalypse Now and Apocalypse Now Redux on Wikipedia.

Negotiation

Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see any other alternatives. Do you?

Steve Jobs, The Steve Jobs Emails that Show How to Win a Hard-nosed Negotiation

I don't really buy that there is that much to learn about negotiation in this email exchange. It's a great example of how adept Jobs was at persuasion, but in this case, what exactly did Apple have to lose if HarperCollins didn't meet their demands?

They already had deals in place with many other competing publishers so it doesn't seem like they really had any incentive to compromise. Jobs knew this, so it was easy to play hardball.

Not the Sharpest Knife in the Drawer

Prosecutors said that she knocked the knife from his hand, broke it in two, bit him in the hand, forced him to the ground and locked him between her thighs.

U.S. Female Sailor Beats Dubai Rapist into Submission

New $100 Bill to be Introduced

The redesigned note incorporates added security features, such as a blue, 3-D security ribbon and a disappearing Liberty Bell in an inkwell. The features are designed to thwart counterfeiters.

Redesigned $100 bill coming in October

The Federal Reserve has finally jumped the shark.

Pebble

Nilay Patel reviews the Pebble smartwatch for The Verge:

The Pebble’s charming simplicity and fundamental competence inspires confidence. It’s so good at what it does now that it’s easy to imagine all other things it might do in the future.

As one of the most prominent Kickstarter hardware projects, it's good to see the Pebble apparently living up to the hype. Also, I particularly enjoyed this part about the battery life:

Will you see a clock the next time you look at your wrist, or will you see a dead plastic talisman of a society shattered into pieces by information overload? Chances are you’ll see a clock.

Apple vs. Analysts

Earlier today, I was reading a Reuters report on Apple's “disappointing” quarterly results and the article mentioned something called the “Analysts Revision Model”. This model, developed by a company called StarMine, scores companies on a scale of 1-100 based on “changes in analyst sentiment”. StarMine claims the ARM score is “highly predictive of relative price movement” which it may well be. But let's evaluate the scores currently assigned to Apple and it's closest rivals:

On Twitter this morning (1, 2, 3) I was fairly harsh on the value of the model itself, but after thinking about it more, I realized the real blame here falls on the “analysts” upon whose machinations this model is based. What the scores are basically telling us is how valuable the insights of those analysts into each of the companies listed is worth.

In the case of Apple? Not much.

Annie Hall (1977)

Note: This post is part of on ongoing series in which I'm watching a lot of movies.

I haven't watched a lot of Woody Allen movies, so I didn't really know what to expect going into this film. Now, having watched it, I think the general idea of a “Woody Allen movie” is lots of one-liners and breaking of the fourth wall. Does that sound about right?

Anyway, on to my notes:

Annie Hall on Wikipedia.