Geekbook 1.31 | An Internet and Online Media Zeitgeist

Welcome to Geekbook —  Capturing the daily buzz in digital media and online marketing & design, as well as trends, news, and cultural topics that are helping shape and inform today’s readers. Subscribe here to receive Geekbook via e-mail.

Today — Chuck Hagel gets grilled at confirmation hearings, Facebook releases new gift card, a poetical look a the old, new media, Warren Buffett’s bet on local newspapers, Twitter’s photo/video enhancements, and some social media tips for photographers. Enjoy!

  • Newsfeed: Chuck Hagel’s confirmation hearing dominated the feed today, as senators hammered the Secretary of Defense nominee for hours. – The National Journal
  • The Facebook Card: Facebook enhances their previously released ‘Gifts’, with a new gift card. This reusable card works across multiple merchants while maintaining a separate balance for each. – The Next Web
  • When Newspapers Were New: I thoroughly enjoyed Alexis Madrigal’s essay, venturing back to a time when newspapers were considered new media. An interesting look at how writers and journalists of the time responded to new forms of communication and how they integrated them into their craft. – The Atlantic
  • Buffett Expands Newspaper Portfolio: Warren Buffett’s media group has purchased the Greensboro (N.C.) News & Record. Buffett stated,  “newspapers that intensively cover their communities will have a good future.”.  – Poynter
  • Twitter Update: Twitter rolled out a significant update today, making it easier to view photos and videos on the site. Now instead of opening pictures via a new tab, photos will expand within the current window- Mashable
  • 7 Twitter Tips for Photographers – Allison Stadd provides a seven great overview of how Twitter can become a key tool for photographers. – All Twitter

“I’m sorry. I stopped listening after you said ‘supposably’.” someecards via

(Images via Twitter, AFP/Getty Images, Shutterstock respectively)

Geekbook is produced by Jeff Howland, Online Media Strategist at Dream Local Digital.

Tips, additions, or comments? E-mail me.

Follow Jeff on Twitter and Google+.


Trove – 4 Things Worth Reading

texas our texas

texas our texas (Photo credit: jmtimages)

‘Trove’ is a weekly compilation of stories and articles that have captured my attention and compelled me to read on.

Happy reading!

  • Parent Health Care and Modern Medicine’s Obsession With Longevity – The era of medical miracles has created a new phase of aging, as far from living as it is from dying. A son’s plea to let his mother go. | New York Magazine
  • In Defense of the Faculty Lounge –  A defense of the faculty lounge, that magical idea factory that has become, in the current presidential campaign, an object of unexpected derision.| Bloomberg
  • Why Women Still Can’t Have It All – It’s time to stop fooling ourselves, says a woman who left a position of power: the women who have managed to be both mothers and top professionals are superhuman, rich, or self-employed. If we truly believe in equal opportunity for all women, here’s what has to change. | Anne-Marie Slaughter – The Atlantic
  • How Texas Inflicts Bad Textbooks on Us – No matter where you live, if your children go to public schools, the textbooks they use were very possibly written under Texas influence.| Gail Collins, The New York Review of Books

Something Awesome:

  • A Story for Tomorrow: A Cinematic Meditation on the Human Condition | Brain Pickings

The Olympic Drama, Recorded

There has been a lot of negative press about NBC’s coverage of the Olympics this year. This The New Yorker story reminded me of the Wide World of Sports days, when we did not simply watch a game, we learned about the athlete, the story behind the seemingly heroic giant of the athletic stadium. We learned that they were just kids, kids like us, who were good at something; really good…and here they were on the world stage. I’m a sucker for a good story, and I love this angle on the presentation of sport. I feel on an occasion so spectacular as the Olympics, that maybe it’s ok (not in all cases, of course) to sacrifice the live broadcast to tell me about this kid’s journey, show me video of them swimming in the pool at age 5, show me the high school gym where they first trained…it’s ok to tell the story; the drama is after all, quite real. And we then may better appreciate what it means, not just to the country, but to that kid, to be there, to stand on that podium.

Trove – 4 Things Worth Reading

Supreme Court

Supreme Court (Photo credit: afagen)

‘Trove’ is a compilation of stories and articles that have captured my attention and compelled me to read on.

This week we explore a lengthy piece taking us through the origins of the Citizens United case up to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision. Next a couple of Mother Jones stories – one about military veterans, exposed to poisoned water at their base, and how their illnesses may help greatly advance breast cancer research; the second story, a tragic and compelling look at one steel plant’s dangerous history and the systemic concerns in the industry’s safety system. To finish things up, Diane Ravitch continues her aggressive defense of the public school system, countering reports and officials who find it to be a threat to national security.

Happy reading!

Trove – 4 Things Worth Reading

‘Trove’ is a weekly compilation of stories and articles that have captured my attention and compelled me to read on.

Friends cast in first season. Front: Cox, Anis...

Friends cast in first season. Front: Cox, Aniston. Back: LeBlanc, Kudrow, Schwimmer, Perry. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Typically I do 5 stories, however I’m only halfway through a long read, which I’m certain will be in next week’s Trove.

This week we go on a tough journey as a woman struggles through her husband’s rare form of dementia…the end of this is beautiful. Next we read a lecture by a string theorist in which he offers his thoughts on the complementary natures of science and the liberal arts…I struggled with this one at first, as, I suppose one tends to when dealing with string theorists, but it ended up in the Trove, as I enjoyed weaving through his thought process. Then we look at an old one I pulled out of the archives as it is complementary to a book I’m reading. This is an amazing piece, which explores the foundations of human personality, what we’re born with and what is developed by our culture; how kids of similar traits can end up so wildly different in the end. This is interesting stuff! Finally, a fabulous interview with the characters of ‘Friends’ as they look back at their magical ten year run. To hear the actors talk now about the show, which ended eight years ago, I feel lucky to have experienced it. They really were friends and it’s amazing how it all came together.

Happy reading!

  • A Rare Form of Dementia Tests a Vow of ‘for Better, for Worse’ |
  • On the Universality of Creativity in the Liberal Arts and in the Sciences | On Being Blog
  • The Science of Success – The Atlantic
  • Friends Oral History: Inside the Ratings Juggernaut’s Secret Past | Vanity Fair

Trove – 5 Things Worth Reading

English: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and...

English: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, during his European Tour. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

‘Trove’ is a weekly compilation of stories and articles that have captured my attention and compelled me to read on.

I didn’t get much reading done this week…enough though, to cobble together this week’s list; which appears to heavily favor New York publications. This week we hear from Paul Krugman, who always makes things sound so easy; we continue on last week’s climate change thread, by looking at some strange and scary fixes that could become a reality if things don’t change soon; an insightful look into the history of our higher education system and how colleges fight to balance the need to make money and provide high quality education, with the need to keep tuition from becoming even more out of reach; an amazing, sad, and brave story of a woman who experienced tragedy and went through a unique transition to put her family’s life back together; and finally, as Facebook grapples with their IPO troubles, a great journey through Mark Zuckerberg’s growth as CEO and how his leadership style is turning Wall Street upside-down…Happy reading!

Trove – 5 Things Worth Reading

Adam Yauch, Bestie Boys at Brixton Academy - 0...

Adam Yauch, Beastie Boys at Brixton Academy – 05/09/07 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

‘Trove’ is a weekly compilation of stories and articles that have captured my attention and compelled me to read on.

This week we look at the review of a recent study shedding new light on how social interactions underlie the evolution of intelligence; a recent Nature report that compares the productivity of industrial and organic agriculture; a look into the life of the kid who, in 2007, became the first person to ‘unlock’ the iPhone and who went on to perform similar feats on Sony’s PS3; a book which explores how human culture and lifestyle manipulate our internal clocks, causing ‘social jet-lag’; and finally, a look back at Adam Yauch’s life, how The Beastie Boys impacted music, and how they impacted us…Happy reading!

  • How social interaction and teamwork led to human intelligence | ScienceDaily
  • Time to Stop Worrying and Learn to Love Industrial Agriculture? | Mother Jones
  • George Hotz, Sony, and the Anonymous Hacker Wars | The New Yorker
  • Cuckoo | New York Magazine
  • MCA, Kid Forever: How the Beastie Boys United Us by Never Growing Up – Jack Hamilton | The Atlantic