Poke The Box by Seth Godin – Review

As usual, I’ll start off with a quote that I feel best encapsulates the idea of the book. Since this book is about starting, I found the quote at the end of the book most apt.

There are two mistakes one can make along the road to truth. Not going all the way, and not starting. – Siddhartha Gautama.
Initiate Don’t Wait.
The core message of the book (manifesto actually) is to start and get to the point of no return. Make things happen. To ship your finished work. That takes guts and passion. It is not always easy to ship but a cursory study of successful people will prove that successful people always ship. For example, world class programmers do not become masters of their fields until they start to learn through poking and observing/studying how the box reacts to their pokes. The thing to start does not have to be earth shattering or world changing. In face, it can be simple things. Obvious things. And NOW is the time to start. Start. Don’t stall. (more…)

Six Steps to Emulate TOMS Business Model Review

Blake Mycoskie is nothing but inspirational in Start Something That Matters  and in line of my goal of reading one book a week in 2012 (inspired by a Julien Smith post), here’s the mindmap summary of Start Something That Matters.
1. TOMS Story
Origins of TOMS
Blake Mycoskie, a serial entrepreneur and Amazing Race finalist got the idea for TOMS (Tomorrows Shoes) during a vacation in Argentina. He discovered the comfy alpargatas (the national shoe of Argentina) as well as the need for shoes for underprivileged kids. His first instinct was to start a shoe charity but he aborted the idea as not being feasible. His entrepreneurial brain kicked in and the idea for a for-profit business TOMS was born. It was a simple but untested business model where the company would donate a pair of shoes for each pair sold. One-for-one. (more…)

Three Steps to Starting and Finishing Something Remarkable: Summary of Do The Work by Steven Pressfield

Do the Work- This short book (more like a manifesto) by the irrepressible Steven Pressfield is a gem on overcoming procrastination and self-sabotage to create something beautiful that you are passionate about. Do the Work outlines three simple yet profound steps to create something that comes truly from your authentic self.

The quote below sums up the book perfectly. A child has no trouble believing the unbelievable, nor does the genius or the madman. It is only you and I, with our big brains and our tiny hearts, who doubt and overthink and hesitate. Introducing Enemies & Allies The three main enemies that stop us from accessing our creative self are: Resistance: It is a force so negative and evil that it blocks our true calling. It is extremely hard to detect as its crafty and takes on many different forms. It is impersonal and infallible and everyone who has ventured out to be creative has had Resistance as his or her enemy.


Review – Daniel Pink’s A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future

Daniel Pink’s  A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future has an interesting view on globalization where he argues that the world is moving from the Informational Age to the Conceptual Age. Abundance, Asia and Automation are identified as three forces that are changing the future.

The first force, `Abundance’ refers to the state of our lives in developed countries and increasingly we want products or services that are aesthetically pleasing. The second force, `Asia’ refers to outsourcing. The third force, `Automation’ is self-explanatory. Pink reasons that if we are not creating aesthetically pleasing outcomes (experience, service or products) at work, or if our jobs can be outsourced or automated then we are in danger of being redundant.

But fret not, as Pink also states the six skills or abilities that will help us thrive in this New Economy and the six antidotes are as follows: (more…)

What Exactly Is An Infographic And How to Design One

Information graphics, or infographics, are graphic artistic representations of information and facts, data or knowledge, and designed to provide complex information in a quick and clear way.

Infographics have existed for a long time, but these days the surge in several very user-friendly and free applications has made that the creation of infographics became accessible to a sizeable part of the people. Social media in general and sites as Facebook and Twitter in particular have additionally made it possible that individual infographics could be shared with many people all over the world.

What Infographics Usually Do. Well, they generally

·         make complex data easier to understand

·         make massive data bundles consistent

·         stimulate the eyes to examine various data

·         show you the data at various detailed levels, from a wide-ranging overview to the very fine design

·         provide a fairly clear objective: they describe and explore, offering tabulation and decoration

·         are meticulously providing statistical and verbal explanations of a bundle of data

Why use infographics?

We place so much value and importance on written and spoken text, but it is an unquestionable basic fact that our brain processes images much faster that written or spoken words, and this explains the increase in the number of infographic we see. They, at its best, convert complicated information into graphic images that are not only easy to understand, but visually appealing as well. It is not surprising that people on the internet and magazine readers really adore infographics.

But there’s one problem, infographics that sometimes appear as if they were relatively easy to create mostly are anything but! Developing something  in Photoshop that is stunning and immediately comprehensible as well, is usually a time-consuming activity that demands a lot of patience. This is why it is occasionally helpful to use quick infographics tools to increase the speed of the operation.