Sat Nov 29 2008

Weekend inspiration for November 29, 2008

I like slow weekends when I’m not under the gun with work. Matt Webb says this feels like “zero gravity”, and I have to agree. I typically take this time to catch up on my reading, so in case you’re interested, here’s what’s caught my eye in the past week.

1) This interview with Jeff Bezos on Smartmoney (about the future of is interesting. I’ve always been a huge fan of Amazon and I do admire a company that manages to pull away from what most would call its core business (online sales) to fill a need of others - which is the case of their Web Services platform, that we‘ve been using for a few years now [1] - or the Kindle, which follows Bezos’ vision that people will read again.

2) My copy of Adaptive Path’s Subject To Change has finally arrived and I can’t wait to go through it. I’ll post some more thoughts as soon as I finish reading it, but usually those guys don’t disappoint. It is safe to assume that if you’re into the business of building products, you’ll like (and get value out of) this book.

3) If you’re a fan of number crunching (we’re doing a few interesting things with map/reduce with a client of ours), you’ll probably be interested in a post about data mining over at New Scientist. It talks about what kinds of data companies are collecting based on your online habits. It also briefly mentions Stephen Baker’s new book The Numerati which I personally haven’t read yet (but will). If you fancy number crunching, though, you may want to look at Supercrunchers as well, that I personally loved.

4) For the rubyists out there, the Rubyconf 08 videos are now online, so you might want to start your downloads if you (like me) missed the conference. The guys over at Confreaks - who go through all the trouble of filming, encoding, uploading and serving these videos - deserve a few drinks.

[1] For those curious, an interesting tidbit: Goplan was the first rails-based application to publicly run on EC2 instances (while EC2 was in beta, in September of 06). How cool is that?