Gongol.com Archives: February 2013
Brian Gongol


February 26, 2013

News Merging the cultures of Time and Meredith
New York City meets Des Moines

Business and Finance Federal spending needs to be reined in
Some taxes undoubtedly do need to rise...but the spending problem must be fixed. And we need economic growth. Lots of it.

Business and Finance A prediction on what Warren Buffett will discuss in his letter to shareholders
The next letter to shareholders in Berkshire Hathaway comes out at the end of the week. Look for a section on "look-through earnings", or what the companies whose stock Berkshire owns made per share, multiplied by the number of shares Buffett's company owns. It's a huge number, even though it doesn't show up in conventional accounting figures.

Computers and the Internet Google: Still not giving in on Google Plus
Now they're building a tool to let people use their sign-in feature on different sites (a lot like the "Sign in using your Facebook account" option seen in many places). No surprise there: Google is really betting the farm on building user profiles through Google Plus, even if very few people use it as a social network.

Weather and Disasters Lightning shooting into space

The United States of America Where Craigslist "missed connections" happen most
In the Midwest, generally the grocery store. Throughout the South, quite widely it's at Walmart.

The United States of America One speech fits all?
Politico takes a look at the President's stump speechmaking lately and posits that it's turned into a "Mad Libs" style -- a formulaic approach to defining the terms of every issue, no matter what. Now, that could be a sign of many different things: Lazy speechwriting, for instance. Or a formula that has been proven to work. But one thing it signals is that real and meaningful thoughts about those issues aren't really being shared by the talk from the highest level. It's too bad we don't expect our Presidents (and other high-level officials) to spend just five minutes a day recording their own original thoughts on the day and the issues pressing upon it. Sure, we get official, sanitized Tweets from the White House and many other officials. And, occasionally, someone in Washington will pen an op-ed piece. But it would be nice to imagine that the people wielding the greatest power (a) thought highly enough of the people and (b) thought highly enough of the value of the written word that they would sit down, compose their thoughts briefly, and share them -- not through a press office or a spokesperson, but directly with their electors. Of course it will never happen, but that's really too bad. Good writing and clear thinking go hand-in-hand.

Computers and the Internet "Macs are not invulnerable"
Java security flaw allows hackers to attack Apple's own corporate computers. Macs still have some inherent security advantages over Windows computers, but the problem is that some people take that and assume it means they face no risks at all. That's a preposterous conclusion. Lower vulnerability is not the same as invincibility. And if that sense of invincibility causes Mac users to behave unsafely, then all of the security features and programs in the world won't stop them from making dangerous choices online.

The United States of America Does any Democrat dare run for President against Hillary Clinton?

News Farewell, International Herald Tribune
In what looks on the surface to be a pointless exercise in rebranding and identity dilution, it will be re-christened as the "International New York Times"

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