Hard Work: What’s It Good For?

A meme has been floating around for some time now about hard work – and how it is overrated. I’ve come across a number of “How I Work” articles by prominent entrepreneurs that talk about the merits of “sometimes” heading into the office, watching lots of television, and questioning the need for a 40-hour workweek.
Many of these articles profile people who have built multi-million dollar businesses – companies that required a 24/7 work ethic during the start-up phase. No doubt, in the early days, these same folks had rigorous schedules, spent long nights overcoming major technical challenges, and developed loyal communities – user by user – through ceaseless efforts.

So why all this talk about chilling out from those who must have worked tirelessly to get where they are? Something doesn’t add up. This trendy new approach to work seems absent of the ambition and relentless drive necessary to make ideas happen.

Certainly, it’s possible that these successful entrepreneurs have started to coast a bit – and with millions of customers, it is their prerogative to do so. I’m also aware that as we get older, start families, and settle down, it’s natural to think about how to work smarter. A 24/7 schedule isn’t sustainable forever. But I still can’t help but wonder if these entrepreneurs are sharing the right message?

So why all this talk about chilling out from those who must have worked tirelessly to get where they are? Something doesn’t add up.

The push towards tremendous achievements – the determination we see in visionaries ranging from Steve Jobs to your everyday start-up founder who quits her day job to pursue a dream – is what drives bold entrepreneurial pursuits. Such journeys, I have found, require incredible amounts of sheer energy, focus, and time.

Having recently concluded four years of interviews for a book on the topic of making ideas happen, I can say one thing for sure: Hard work is the single greatest competitive advantage. Ideas don’t happen because they are great. The genius is in the execution, aka the “99% perspiration” that has become this site’s namesake.

Perspiration implies sweat, self-discipline, and (yes) occasional exhaustion. I think this is what Malcolm Gladwell teaches us in his book Outliers when he proposes that a true mastery of anything requires 10,000 hours of doing it. There are no shortcuts to lasting success.

Hard work is the single greatest competitive advantage.

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A meme has been floating around for some time now about hard work – and how it is overrated. I’ve come across a number of “How I Work” articles by prominent entrepreneurs that talk about the merits of “sometimes” heading into the office, watching lots of television, and questioning the need for a 40-hour workweek.
Many of these articles profile people who have built multi-million dollar businesses – companies that required a 24/7 work ethic during the start-up phase. No doubt, in the early days, these same folks had rigorous schedules, spent long nights overcoming major technical challenges, and developed loyal communities – user by user – through ceaseless efforts.

So why all this talk about chilling out from those who must have worked tirelessly to get where they are? Something doesn’t add up. This trendy new approach to work seems absent of the ambition and relentless drive necessary to make ideas happen.
Leer más “Hard Work: What’s It Good For?”

Banner Ads: Excellent Examples for Inspiration

Advertising is everywhere, especially on the Web. Most websites I visit have some sort of web banner advertisements on them. For some websites, such as big design blogs, advertising is the main source of income.

With that in mind, it’s clear that website owners need to think very carefully about how their ads are displayed and where they are placed in relation to other elements on their site.

I have put together a showcase of different ways that a few websites show their ads, which might be helpful when it’s time to place banner ads on your site. Some are bang in your face while others are more subtle, blending in with the web design.


by Andy Johnson

Banner Ads: Excellent Examples for Inspiration

Advertising is everywhere, especially on the Web. Most websites I visit have some sort of web banner advertisements on them. For some websites, such as big design blogs, advertising is the main source of income.

With that in mind, it’s clear that website owners need to think very carefully about how their ads are displayed and where they are placed in relation to other elements on their site.

I have put together a showcase of different ways that a few websites show their ads, which might be helpful when it’s time to place banner ads on your site. Some are bang in your face while others are more subtle, blending in with the web design.

CSS Remix

The ads on CSS Remix are displayed along the top of the site and blend in well with the site listings.

CSS Remix

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The State of HTML5 Apps

Recently, Apple announced its HTML5 expose (however failed). Respected web design consultant and author, Eric Meyer, has started talking about the concept of Web Stacks — and we’re in a situation not unlike the beginnings of Ajax: A few people are already doing it, but we haven’t fully put it out in the open yet, and we certainly don’t know what to call what we’re doing.

My own HTML5 projects have been presenting their own questions, and I felt like I needed to take a step back and set a stage so that I could make sure that I understand where all these disparate pieces fit.


by Alex Kessinger

The State of HTML5 Apps

We’re at the brink of shifts in the way we do things. The monks who have been toiling away on these new pieces of machinery are coming out of the monolith and starting to spread the word to the people. You might have seen my tutorial on creating an HTML5 iPhone app, highlighting the possibilities of open standards, client-side applications that leverage technologies we’ve traditionally used for websites and web apps.

Recently, Apple announced its HTML5 expose (however failed). Respected web design consultant and author, Eric Meyer, has started talking about the concept of Web Stacks — and we’re in a situation not unlike the beginnings of Ajax: A few people are already doing it, but we haven’t fully put it out in the open yet, and we certainly don’t know what to call what we’re doing.

My own HTML5 projects have been presenting their own questions, and I felt like I needed to take a step back and set a stage so that I could make sure that I understand where all these disparate pieces fit. Leer más “The State of HTML5 Apps”

Quiero ser Community Manager!

Mucha es la gente que me lo dice y que te pregunta cómo y dónde, pues después de ver el panorama le diría que, entre el anuncio de Fanta y los cursos especializados, todavía hay una gama de grises por construir sobre la profesión infinita.

Como nueva e indefinida, queda todo un territorio semivirgen y en blanco por y para trabajar, de hecho con ejemplos como el de MTV ya se ve como el perfil puede y tiende a categorizarse, con especialidades acorde, DJ, economista, arquitecto, coolhunter, experto en moda….

Por tanto, el día que surge la frase de “yo quiero ser community manager” uno donde se va a estudiar????, el de 18 o 19 años qué hace?? dónde busca?? por dónde empieza??…

Lo lógico sería asociarlo a las carreras vinculadas a la comunicación, pero como experta en todas ellas, te paras a pensar y no puede estar en una sino está en otra, o da para carrera nueva (Comunicación experto en Redes Sociales) o troncal a todas, al de audiovisual porque en menos de nada necesita tirar de un twitter y/o de un canal en foursquare para sus programas (MTV en twitter y en foursquare) además de gestionar los youtubes y el futuro Google TV, el periodista lo necesita para la gestión de reputación, la suya, mover su blog, si lo tiene y hacerse su autopromo y la de sus representados en casos de gabinetes de prensa y al de publicidad, ni que decir, para saber movilizar y gestionar sus marcas y eventos en la red…por tanto da para una titulación completa???


Mucha es la gente que me lo dice y que te pregunta cómo y dónde, pues después de ver el panorama le diría que, entre el anuncio de Fanta y los cursos especializados, todavía hay una gama de grises por construir sobre la profesión infinita.

Como nueva e indefinida, queda todo un territorio semivirgen y en blanco por y para trabajar, de hecho con ejemplos como el de MTV ya se ve como el perfil puede y tiende a categorizarse, con especialidades acorde, DJ, economista, arquitecto, coolhunter, experto en moda….

Por tanto, el día que surge la frase de “yo quiero ser community manager” uno donde se va a estudiar????, el de 18 o 19 años qué hace?? dónde busca?? por dónde empieza??…

Lo lógico sería asociarlo a las carreras vinculadas a la comunicación, pero como experta en todas ellas, te paras a pensar y no puede estar en una sino está en otra, o da para carrera nueva (Comunicación experto en Redes Sociales) o troncal a todas, al de audiovisual porque en menos de nada necesita tirar de un twitter y/o de un canal en foursquare para sus programas (MTV en twitter y en foursquare) además de gestionar los youtubes y el futuro Google TV, el periodista lo necesita para la gestión de reputación, la suya, mover su blog, si lo tiene y  hacerse su autopromo y la de sus representados en casos de gabinetes de prensa y al de publicidad, ni que decir, para saber movilizar y gestionar sus marcas y eventos en la red…por tanto da para una titulación completa??? Leer más “Quiero ser Community Manager!”

The Best Website Designs of the 2010 World Cup

The World Cup is currently taking place in South Africa and people all over the world are glued to television sets at home, in bars and in town squares, to watch their country play.

The World Cup is actually everywhere one looks – all over TV, the Internet and even supermarket products.

A lot of interesting graphic design is coming out of the World Cup, so we’ve put together a compilation of some of the best designed World Cup 2010 websites. We’ve also included a few African websites for more inspiration.

Drop us a comment and let us know which of these websites you like the best, and if you know of any other inspirational World Cup sites ones that we may have missed.


The World Cup is currently taking place in South Africa and people all over the world are glued to television sets at home, in bars and in town squares, to watch their country play.

The World Cup is actually everywhere one looks – all over TV, the Internet and even supermarket products.

A lot of interesting graphic design is coming out of the World Cup, so we’ve put together a compilation of some of the best designed World Cup 2010 websites. We’ve also included a few African websites for more inspiration.

Drop us a comment and let us know which of these websites you like the best, and if you know of any other inspirational World Cup sites ones that we may have missed. Leer más “The Best Website Designs of the 2010 World Cup”

Could Your Social Networking Activity Be Violating Your Employment Agreement?

The question raised in a recent lawsuit involving a former employee’s use of LinkedIn delves into uncharted legal territory: does the mere act of connecting with other professionals on a social networking site constitute a violation of non-compete and non-solicitation agreements?

After leaving her position at an IT staffing firm, a former employee of a recruiting company has been accused of violating the terms of the noncompete clause included in her original employment agreement by her conduct on the professional networking site LinkedIn. In a lawsuit filed in Minnesota this week by TEKsystems Inc., Brelyn Hammernik was charged with soliciting her former company’s clients using LinkedIn.


linkedin200The question raised in a recent lawsuit involving a former employee’s use of LinkedIn delves into uncharted legal territory: does the mere act of connecting with other professionals on a social networking site constitute a violation of non-compete and non-solicitation agreements?

After leaving her position at an IT staffing firm, a former employee of a recruiting company has been accused of violating the terms of the noncompete clause included in her original employment agreement by her conduct on the professional networking site LinkedIn. In a lawsuit filed in Minnesota this week by TEKsystems Inc., Brelyn Hammernik was charged with soliciting her former company’s clients using LinkedIn. Leer más “Could Your Social Networking Activity Be Violating Your Employment Agreement?”

Place Important Windows 7 Shortcuts Within Reach Of Every User

Windows 7 is relatively a new operating system. Applications are still being developed for it that explore and push its boundaries. If you are a Windows 7 user, you already appreciate its improvement over Windows Vista. But while 7 provides a great margin of user convenience, things can always be improved by third party applications. This brings to our today’s application – Preme.

Preme is a freeware program that helps place important Windows 7 shortcuts within reach of every user. There are a number of handy shortcuts provided by Preme which make 7’s usage a lot easier; for instance, you will be able to view all minimized windows in 3D style by just moving your mouse cursor to the top left corner. You can choose the view to be displayed in Flip 3D or Alt-Tab style.


Windows 7 is relatively a new operating system. Applications are still being developed for it that explore and push its boundaries. If you are a Windows 7 user, you already appreciate its improvement over Windows Vista. But while 7 provides a great margin of user convenience, things can always be improved by third party applications. This brings to our today’s application – Preme.

Preme is a freeware program that helps place important Windows 7 shortcuts within reach of every user. There are a number of handy shortcuts provided by Preme which make 7’s usage a lot easier; for instance, you will be able to view all minimized windows in 3D style by just moving your mouse cursor to the top left corner. You can choose the view to be displayed in Flip 3D or Alt-Tab style.

Preme Leer más “Place Important Windows 7 Shortcuts Within Reach Of Every User”