Spamonomics

Since last Wednesday, the torrent of junk e-mail coursing through the internet has been slowed dramatically, with 40 percent or more of it cut off at the source. The source of all that spam? San Jose, California. That’s where a group of servers responsible for much of the world’s spam had been operating until they […]

Flu Data

A few years back, I bought $300 worth of food and water to store in the basement in case some terrible bird flu hit and we couldn’t leave the house for a week or two. We’ve eaten the good stuff bit by bit and a lot of what is left is now well past its […]

Cafe’s Dilemma: Can You Offer Free Wi-Fi and Still Sell Lattes?

Do you ever feel the guilt-stare from a barista as you’re sitting in a cafe enjoying its free wireless? The cheapest patrons will nurse a coffee for three hours, while many will cave at the rate of roughly one beverage (or baked good) per hour. Rather than guilting e-freeloaders (which puts strain on customer-barista relations), […]

The Real Cost of Chewing Tobacco

Police in Washington State foiled a near-perfect bank robbery this week by using DNA evidence they extracted from the suspect’s spittoon. In September, the man allegedly pepper-sprayed an armored-car guard and ran off with a bag full of money. Witnesses called police, describing the suspect as a man in a blue shirt, construction vest, and […]

Would You Blog From the Unemployment Line?

Many of us spend a lot of time giving away our creative and intellectual labor for free: editing Wikipedia entries, putting our music on MySpace, blogging, micro-blogging, uploading photos to Flickr, putting videos on YouTube, and pasting goofy phrases onto cat pictures. Plenty of web sites make a living from the content that people provide […]

Freakonomcs.com

Photo from Freakonomcs.com. I accidentally typed freakonomcs.com this morning. Amazingly, there is something there. The content is actually pretty funny. I can’t believe it was worth someone’s time to set it up, but I think that about many things on the internet. Hopefully, this post will have made it worth the person’s time.

Is Google Making Us Smarter?

It depends on how you use the web, and how you define “smarter.” The internet was abuzz this summer over Nicholas Carr‘s eloquent argument in The Atlantic that the internet is eroding our ability to read long and complex texts (if you agree, but can’t make it through to the end of his 4,200-word essay, […]

Is JungleSmash the New Madison Avenue?

I love social experiments, and I love how the internet is a force for disintermediation, and I love Mad Men too, so I am really prepared to love JungleSmash as well. JungleSmash is a little experiment from my friend James Altucher, whom I’ve written about here and here. From JungleSmash James also started Stockpickr.com, the […]

Is the Internet More Vital Than Water?

Not for everyone, of course — Brock Lesnar, for instance, doesn’t go near the Internet. But as mobile browsing is fast becoming a reality, I love watching how people use the Internet to shape their lives in ways large and small. Here are a pair of interesting examples. Granted, both of these fall into the […]

Hotels Are So Twentieth Century

From airbedandbreakfast.com Social networking websites have changed the way we view our reputations, the way we organize protests, and now the way we … couch surf? AirBed&Breakfast lets travelers meet locals in 20 countries and book a few nights in their guest rooms, as an alternative to sleeping in a hotel. They are hoping to […]