Stretching Forward and Backward into Eternity

new-york-times-headquarters


Well, maybe not into eternity, but if you want to be overwhelmed by information stretching as far back as the New York Times has published AND be continually updated on what they’re publishing every second, look no further. I give you:

The TimesMachine: An archive of the New York Times from the 1850s through the 1920

There’s also a beta version that’s a little slower but offers some additional features here

and

Times Wire: A continuous stream of what is being spit out every second. Why look at Twitter when you could be overwhelmed by the variety of stories put out by the Times?

Olympics

 

Despite the unfinished hotels, packs of stray dogs wandering the city, reports of water that sounds more like acid, and lack of manhole covers and snow in Sochii I’m kind of looking forward to the Winter Olympics. I’m sure NBC’s coverage and refusal to put hockey front and center will drive me nuts, but I’m still going to watch some of it. To commemorate it (and my the first Olympics my son might remember), I present an artifact from the first Olympic games I remember watching.

A Generational Rant

I have a bit of a generational rant I need to go on. I’m not going to complain about other generations at all, instead I’m concerned about definition. In my profession, I often deal with demographics and how people fit into demographic bands (age, income, etc.). Recently I’ve noticed that the definitions of generations being used are all wrong. For example, recently I’ve heard the following:

  • Millennials are 18-34 years old
  • Baby Boomers are 45+

On the surface that might sound ok, but where does Gen X fit in? We’re not Millennials or Boomers in terms of culture, attitudes, priorities, income, experience, etc., but it seems that half of Generation X is being swallowed up by the adjacent generational groups. For marketers I understand this. Laziness makes classification easier for them in this case. Regardless, it’s still incorrect.

I would argue that Generation X spans people aged 30 to 48. At the fringes, I’m sure there are individuals that identify with the older or younger generation due to their experience, siblings, etc.. However, using my definition, Gen X spans approximately 18 years. Using some of the definitions I’ve seen recently it would only consist of approximately 9 years.

Consider this, by the definitions being put forth, the characters in the movie Singles would be likely considered Baby Boomers and the characters in the movie Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the TV show How I Met Your Mother border on Generation Y. Either of these would be 100% incorrect.

I’ve given up on marketers designing anything for my generation, but do wish that they wouldn’t try to make us magically go away by chipping away at the edges.

Another Self Portrait

Bob DylanForty years ago, Bob Dylan came back from a motorcycle crash and time on his farm to release Self Portrait. At the time it was panned. People have called this the worst period in Bob Dylan’s career. Well yesterday, Another Self Portrait, the 10th installment of the Bob Dylan Bootleg Series was released and it proves the naysayers from forty years ago wrong.

From the first few listens of this album, it sounds fresh and new. I mean new as in if it were released today, people would be talking about how wonderful and authentic it sounds. Dylan was just ahead of his time on this one. This collection is a quintessential reflection of American music. It’s as if Dylan has reached back into the music that shaped his view of the world and re-imagined it through his voice. Additionally, this is a calculated step by Dylan to move further away from being the so-called voice of a generation. If going electric was designed to distance himself from being merely considered a political singer, Self-Portrait is almost an attempt to shed the fame and expectations that hounded him prior to his motorcycle crash.

 

Most Idiotic Online Service/App Ever

Have you ever found that checking the mail is just too hard? You know, walking to the end of the driveway and opening the box and pulling out paper?

Have you ever thought you should live slowly but still get things all fast and digitized so you have more time to write poems about sandwiches?

Have you had pieces of your brain removed and are only able to drool and grunt while looking at the screen?

Then Outbox is for you: https://www.outboxmail.com/

How on Earth can people be alive today and not know how to stop junkmail (you can’t), how to open and throw away mail?

Say what you will about the USPS, the lack of customization is NOT one of the problems.

And I bet I could eat a biscotti quickly, without the need to rest. Even if it’s not physically possible, my genetics won’t allow me to back down from such a challenge or admit defeat.