Motorola makes the same case for the Hint that Jawbone does for the latest Era, saying that Google Now and voice search have revived the power of talking to your phone. Yet there’s no getting around the Bluetooth headset stigma, so Motorola did its best to make it look like you’re not wearing one. Or wearing anything at all. The Hint is about the size of a peanut, and nestles entirely in your ear; it looks astonishingly like the earpiece Joaquin Phoenix’s character wears throughout Her, a fact that’s not lost on anyone at Motorola. And the intention is very much the same: you’re not meant to put it in and take it out, but to wear it all the time.

It’s looking more and more like Her was an accurate depiction of 2025. This aural interface holds more potential than Google Glass’s visual one to me. It is much less intrusive. 

Let’s say I’m tapping in an email. I’m a stickler for proper capitalization on my iPhone, even when I’m writing my wife, so I’m often tapping the Shift key. But here’s the rub: if, for example, I lose my train of thought, or look up from typing for a second, or become unsure if I actually hit the Shift key or not, there’s no way to tell if the next letter I’m going to type is capitalized or not.

What’s going on? The issue here is the way the letters on the keyboard appear: whether the Shift key is pressed or not, the letters on the iOS keycaps are always capitalized. And because the letters are always capitalized, no normal human being using iOS 7 can tell if the goddamn Shift key is on or off without a healthy amount of trial and error.

Funny to see Fast Company complaining about iOS’s shift key 6 months after me.

Mr. Bloomberg, 72, has vowed to give away his $32.8 billion fortune before he dies. In doing so, he hopes to sharply reduce high smoking rates in Turkey, Indonesia and other countries; bring down obesity levels in Mexico; reduce traffic in Rio de Janeiro (and Istanbul); improve road safety in India and Kenya; prevent deaths at childbirth to mothers in Tanzania; and organize cities worldwide to become more environmentally friendly and efficient in delivering services.

You have to appreciate the ambition of Bills Gates and Michael Bloomberg. Gates is focusing on fixing third world issues (malaria, polio, extreme poverty, clean water) and Bloomberg is focusing on the first world ones (obesity, smoking, pollution). With all their billions being thrown around, it will make for an interesting next 20-30 years. 

I really enjoy Bloomberg’s impatience too.

“I don’t have anything in common with people who stand on escalators,” he said with a sad shake of his head. “I always walk around them — why waste time? You have eternity to rest when you die.”

Steve Levitt:

There could be no two disciplines closer than evolutionary biology and economics. They study different questions and they use different methods, but the way that evolutionary biologists think is exactly like the way that economists think. Both are very much a model of behavior, of individual behavior, and individual behavior that’s motivated by costs and benefits. The other thing is that at its heart, both economics and evolutionary biology strive for simplicity. The simplest story which can explain a set of facts is the one we gravitate to. As opposed to other disciplines. History, history is all about complexity. And you know, literature is all about complexity. Even sociology I think at heart is about complexity. But economics is about simplicity.

I love this quote from the recent Freakonomics podcast. Why We Get Sick and Survival of The Sickest have been two of my favorite books forever. The darwinian approach to medicine is very logical which makes it easy to appreciate for any economist. 

Mathematics and design should be included in this group as well. Theres a beauty and elegance in simplicity that drew me to these disparate fields. 

 Rather than the darkly roasted coffee popularized by Starbucks—the emblem of “second wave” coffee—third-wave roasters cook the raw green beans lightly, to bring out their distinctive profiles. Brewing for peak flavor requires scientific precision: how finely or coarsely to grind a particular strain of bean, steeped in how much water and at what temperature. All this adds up to a cup of black coffee so dimensional, they believe, that there’s no need to pollute it with milk or sweeteners—and so valuable that it can earn a price tag as hefty as $7 a cup.

Premium coffee is set to follow the craft beer path. It’s already happened in chocolate, yogurtthermostats, and computers

Once mainstream consumers are educated on the intricacies of a product, they choose the better experience even if it costs a little more.

The preference for carefully crafted products over commodization is moving through all industries. 

Jeans are next…