Originally posted on

‘Tis herself: A search for “english major who taught herself calculus” returned The Calculus Diaries by Jennifer Oulette. Plus one viral tweet.

When I googled “english major who taught herself calculus,” Google gave me the result I wanted — plus a most unhelpful suggestion. I wondered why.

Last Thursday morning, I was following up on a book recommendation from sometime-TED-blogger Ben Lillie. A writer he knows, an English major, taught herself calculus and wrote a book about it. Don’t you want to read that book? I do. I couldn’t remember the writer’s name that morning, but I remembered the plot of the book. So I searched for “english major who taught herself calculus.”

And Google asked:

Did you mean: “english major who taught himself calculus”?

It was just so weird, I took a screengrab and tweeted it. What was there to say in comment besides: “No Google, no I didn’t.”

Then I…

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Is Twitter lazy or just blind: Making a play for messaging supremacy?

Originally posted on Uncrunched:

The valuations of messaging apps like WhatsApp, Snapchat and others are, obviously, stunning.

Twitter is our de facto identifier now (think of all the times you see Twitter handles on TV news and other media). Not Facebook, and certainly not Google.

Allowing proper private communication among users is an obvious easy win. And yet Twitter has never really cared about private messaging. Direct messaging is a long neglected product, and Twitter doesn’t seem to care much about it.

I wonder if Twitter execs regret not paying more attention to private messaging, and if they occasionally fantasize about the extra tens of billions of dollars they might have added to their market cap if they had done so.

It’s not too late.

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Originally posted on PandoDaily:


For all of their hip, innovative, Silicon Valley beginnings, in 2014 Google and Facebook are essentially the Coke and Pepsi of mobile advertising. In the wake of contrasting Q1 earning reports — Google stagnant, Facebook surging — as well as a slewof big Facebook announcements at this week’s F8, we’re seeing a small shift in momentum in the market. The dominant narrative is that Facebook is finding its mobile groove, while Google has yet to make the pieces fit together on mobile.

Marin Software manages $6 billion in online ad spend for its clients globally. PandoDaily spoke to CMO Matt Ackley to chew over the developments of the past couple of weeks and the continuing battle for supremacy between Facebook and Google in the increasingly mobile advertising world.

The amount of money Google has seen from each ad click has been trending downwards for a couple of years…

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