The Sunday Diigo Links Post (weekly)

by Yule Heibel on June 19, 2011

  • Health care is local.
    Large swaths of the United States are showing decreasing or stagnating life expectancy even as the nation’s overall longevity trend has continued upwards, according to a county-by-county study of life expectancy over two decades.

    In one-quarter of the country, girls born today may live shorter lives than their mothers, and the country as a whole is falling behind other industrialized nations in the march toward longer life, according to the study.

    Those are among the conclusions of the study by a team of researchers that has spent years teasing apart the regional and demographic differences in longevity in the United States. It sketches a picture of widening inequality among regions and is likely to add urgency to the debate over health-care reform and spending.

    tags: usa health_care longevity ageing public_health

  • Found this via Twitter: Cost of 2,000 calories: $5 via a McDouble; $19 via canned tuna; $60 via lettuce.

    tags: calories laphams_quarterly food cost_of_living

  • Part 4 of a 5-part series; excellent reading:
    What makes for an economically great place? I asked Bruce Katz, head of Brookings’ excellent Metropolitan Policy Program, and he emphasized that smart growth alone is not enough. “What you want is great places that are built on great economic bases,” he said. “The two really need to go together. What I argue for is economy-shaping, talent-preparing, and placemaking, all together.”

    So smart density cannot yield economic flourishing all on its own; cities need to focus on their tradeable sectors, research institutions, and worker training programs. Nonetheless, smart density lays the groundwork for agglomeration economies to emerge and can accelerate and strengthen them when they do. So how can places do density right, to encourage great (economic) places to take root and grow?

    tags: cities urbanism density grist david_roberts

  • Helen Walters on design thinking:
    Just as design thinking does not replace the need for design specialists, nor does it magically appear out of some black box. Design thinking isn’t fairy dust. It’s a tool to be used appropriately. It might help to illuminate an answer but it is not the answer in and of itself.

    Instead, it turns up insights galore, and there is real value and skill to be had from synthesizing the messy, chaotic, confusing and often contradictory intellect of experts gathered from different fields to tackle a particularly thorny problem. That’s all part of design thinking.

    tags: helen_walters design_thinking

  • Really like this, have experienced it myself.
    Part of your mission is teaching “creative confidence.” What does that mean and how do you do that?

    It’s pretty amazing to watch. Students come in and say, “Oh I’m not creative.” That just makes my skin crawl. I really think everybody is creative. There are just some blocks in the way. Lots of CEOs, when I go in their office they say, “Geez, you’re so creative and I’m not a creative person.” It’s not that I’m creative and they’re not. I need to unlock that. The best way to unlock that is to give them creative confidence. Sometimes it’s getting them to be able to stand up and draw stick figures. Sometimes it has to do with getting them to make their strategic plan visual. But the main thing is you have to give them an experience. Creative confidence comes from us teaching organizations, individuals, CEOs, students, or whoever, a methodology. We call it “design thinking” but it’s really an innovation methodology. It’s a little prescribed, but that makes them feel more comfortable because they have this kind of step-by-step approach. It takes them down the path of doing a project and then there’s this moment where they realize that they’ve come up with ideas a lot better than what they would have come up with using their normal method. All they have to do is be mindful of that methodology and continually improve it.

    tags: ideo david_kelley creativity ideas design_thinking

  • This is really fascinating: Washington Post journalists acting as online teachers. Interesting melding of online/distributed learning, claims to expertise-ism, and attempts by old media to find new business / profit models. Fascinating.
    Prestigious. Washington Post MasterClasses are written by Washington Post experts renowned in their fields, many of them Pulitzer Prize and major award-winning journalists.

    tags: washington_post journalism online_learning distributed_education business_model

  • It’s very interesting when you fall into one end of this demographic, …while your own children fall into the other. Interesting times…
    Students now finishing their schooling–the class of 2011–are confronting a youth unemployment rate above 17 percent. The problem is compounding itself as those collecting high school or college degrees jostle for jobs with recent graduates still lacking steady work. “The biggest problem they face is, they are still competing with the class of 2010, 2009, and 2008,” says Matthew Segal, cofounder of Our Time, an advocacy group for young people.

    At the other end, millions of graying baby boomers–the class of 1967–are working longer than they intended because the financial meltdown vaporized the value of their homes and 401(k) plans. For every member of the millennial generation frustrated that she can’t start a career, there may be a baby boomer frustrated that he can’t end one.

    tags: atlantic_monthly workforce unemployment socialcritique

  • This is unreal. I fear for my country.
    The search was part of a mysterious, ongoing nationwide terrorism investigation with an unusual target: prominent peace activists and politically active labor organizers.

    The probe — involving subpoenas to 23 people and raids of seven homes last fall — has triggered a high-powered protest against the Department of Justice and, in the process, could create some political discomfort for President Obama with his union supporters as he gears up for his reelection campaign.

    The apparent targets are concentrated in the Midwest, including Chicagoans who crossed paths with Obama when he was a young state senator and some who have been active in labor unions that supported his political rise.

    Investigators, according to search warrants, documents and interviews, are examining possible “material support” for Colombian and Palestinian groups designated by the U.S. government as terrorists.

    tags: america politics fbi terrorism justice resistance

  • Can’t say I disagree…
    I think appointments are caustic to creativity.
    (Aside from the above, lots of other good stuff in this article. Go read.)

    tags: tumblr david_karp gtd productivity

  • Quite an interesting series of photographs (mugshots)…
    …musicians seem to land themselves in a little bit more trouble than people of other professions. Maybe it’s because they’re living the high life, thinking they can get away with it all, or maybe they’re just negatively influenced by their surroundings, but we think it probably has something to do with the same personality trait that makes them want to be performers in the first place. Just a theory, though. In any event, we were inspired to dig up a few vintage mugshots of famous musicians, many of which are actually quite beautiful in and of themselves, although that could just be Sinatra’s good looks shining through.
    Jimi Hendrix looks extremely dignified and intelligent in his ‘mugshots.’ Statesmanlike. A shame he died young.

    tags: flavorwire mugshots photography musicians celebrities prison

  • I wouldn’t say Jobs responded “shyly” – more like “slyly,” which is appropriate to silly attempts by councilors at extorting amenities where they don’t belong…
    The individual members of the Cupertino City Council seemed like they were in awe the entire time the infamously charismatic Apple CEO spoke (which isn’t surprising), asking Jobs for free Wifi and iPads for constituents as well as for an Apple store that’s actually in Cupertino and not in the Valley or Los Gatos. Jobs shyly responded to the requests, “I think we bring a lot more than free Wifi.”

    tags: apple steve_jobs architecture

    “Wikipedia is forcing people to accept the stone-cold bummer that knowledge is produced and constructed by argument rather than by divine inspiration.”

    tags: wikipedia

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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