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Trevor Oakes
Works at Programming Languages Research Lab || Loves: In-depth articles - Programming Languages - Martial Arts (BJJ) - Startups
Attends Brigham Young University
Lives in Provo, Utah
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Trevor Oakes

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An interesting way to think about the three major tech companies. I lean towards Google of the three. Maybe it's because I don't like people who like themselves too much (marketing) and the buddy buddy of sales gives me an icky feeling while Google's PR slips past my filters?

"So how does the 3-way [between marketing, sales and PR] play out? The computing industry offers a near perfect case study. Apple is as pure a marketing-led company as you can hope to find. Microsoft breathes sales. And Google is entirely a PR-constructed narrative.
...
"Apple is led by a guy who likes himself to the point that he doesn’t care at all what others think about him. And his customers are all people who like themselves too. The best piece of evidence is probably the Mac vs. PC ads. The entire campaign was about self-perceptions. The product-focused ads?  They sell to self-perceptions and personal identities as well. Their effectiveness relies on people knowing that they strongly prefer highly visual and tactile interfaces. The archetypical Apple customer is so well-defined that he or she is practically a caricature: a dancing hipster with eclectic musical tastes who drives certain types of cars.

"Which is why Microsoft’s response was so effective in turn. Rather than accept the self-perception/identity based framing, they reframed the contest. The entire “I am a PC” was highly personal. You get faux-real people with names and faces. Not actors modeling abstract Claritas PRIZM psychographic personas. And Microsoft’s entire selling strategy is sales-driven: OEM partnerships, large enterprise sales, institutional channel partnerships and the like; it’s all 1:1 work. We all know you can only buy Macs at certain prices from a few places. Microsoft software? You are a complete sucker if you routinely pay sticker price. If you can’t find a deal through your company or school, you are subsidizing the rest of us. The “likes other people” bit is also at work. Most Microsoft people I’ve met tend to be friendly, down-to-earth and dressed-down (one sales guy I met wore a suit but carried a backpack; a bit of gaucherie that would probably invite a death sentence in an Apple store). Spend five minutes talking to any Microsoft rep, and they will have ruefully, but confidently acknowledged and laughed at Microsoft’s brand image issues, and made sure you like them even if you don’t like Microsoft. Interacting with Apple people in an Apple store on the other hand, is a slightly intimidating experience, like shopping at an upscale clothing store.

"And what about Google? They don’t advertise. They know your name and everything about you but they don’t even attempt to personalize or customize your experience. Instead they spread stories about great buffets, whiteboards with “Don’t Be Evil” scribbled on them, and how Brin and Page insist on less than 7 +/- 2 items on the Google home page. They make sure that every geek knows that in PageRank, it is Page as in Larry, not as in Web. Every marketer recoils in horror at a brand name being commoditized into the category name (Asprin, Kleenex, Xerox). But Google doesn’t care that Google has become a generic verb. Unlike marketing and sales brand equity, PR brand equity is amplified when a brand becomes the category generic name.  And perhaps the most compelling evidence of Google’s PR-driven culture? They mangle their logo every chance they get (know any other major brand that allows this?), to reflect PR opportunities."
http://www.ribbonfarm.com/2010/10/20/coloring-the-whole-egg-fixing-integrated-marketing/
Three kids are selling lemonade in their neighborhoods one hot day, to passers-by. Kid Red yells things like “The best lemonade in town!” Kid Green yells things like “Hey Joe, how ’bout some lemonade?...
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I guess I should have either changed it or added a note...
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I enjoyed this article for the reminder of some cognitive biases that I fall into as well as some perspective on dealing with those from the humanities and why some things, like comparative advantage and evolutions through natural selection, are hard for some to accept. Krugman attributes it to a distrust or ignorance of (mathematical) models.

It ends with some recommendations for how to communicate effectively which I think are interesting and useful.
RICARDO'S DIFFICULT IDEA. SYNOPSIS: The trendy idea of rejecting Comparative Advantage is rejecting a tried and true idea that has lifted millions out of poverty. The title of this paper is a play on ...
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Brilliant.
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A story of the importance of testing hypotheses to improving using blind (and double blind experiments) and the unfortunate resistance to randomized trials and the statistics behind them.

(The about the author paragraph next to the picture of the author can safely be ignored).
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Well that was unexpected and fun ... I defended against a #zergrush on Google Search. And I don't even play Starcraft.
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Okay, lol, I took down 25 zerglings with 166 APM.
Have you tried any of these: "Try searching “Tilt,” “Anagram” (the page will ask, “Did you mean nag a ram”?) or “Do a Barrel Roll,” or “Let it Snow.”
I liked "Do a Barrel Roll" the best.
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Trevor Oakes

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Very interesting new site by xkcd creator Randall Munroe. Of the two up I like this one the best. Outrageous implications of physics inserted into an everyday situation? Sweet.
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I'd read about this mission before, but this time, watching the video, I realized how cool it is.
 
If all this actually works right, I will eat my shorts.
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That looks like a lot of fun!
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"Boredom is not a necessary consequence of having nothing to do, it is only the negative experience of that state. Television, by obviating the need to learn how to make use of one’s lack of occupation, precludes one from ever discovering how to enjoy it. In fact, it renders that condition fearsome, its prospect intolerable. You are terrified of being bored — so you turn on the television.

"I speak from experience. I grew up in the 60s and 70s, the age of television. I was trained to be bored; boredom was cultivated within me like a precious crop. (It has been said that consumer society wants to condition us to feel bored, since boredom creates a market for stimulation.) It took me years to discover — and my nervous system will never fully adjust to this idea; I still have to fight against boredom, am permanently damaged in this respect — that having nothing to do doesn’t have to be a bad thing. The alternative to boredom is what Whitman called idleness: a passive receptivity to the world.

"So it is with the current generation’s experience of being alone. That is precisely the recognition implicit in the idea of solitude, which is to loneliness what idleness is to boredom. Loneliness is not the absence of company, it is grief over that absence. The lost sheep is lonely; the shepherd is not lonely. But the Internet is as powerful a machine for the production of loneliness as television is for the manufacture of boredom. If six hours of television a day creates the aptitude for boredom, the inability to sit still, a hundred text messages a day creates the aptitude for loneliness, the inability to be by yourself." - William Deresiewicz

Excerpted from http://chronicle.com/article/The-End-of-Solitude/3708
By William Deresiewicz. What does the contemporary self want? The camera has created a culture of celebrity; the computer is creating a culture of connectivity. As the two technologies converge — broa...
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Interesting thought. 
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Super in depth answer (that I agree with, of course). Anyone have a counterpoint?
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"Contemporary culture is a two-tiered system, like the Morlocks and the Eloi in H.G. Wells’s The Time Machine, except that it’s been turned upside down. In The Time Machine the Eloi were an effete upper class, supported by lots of subterranean Morlocks who kept the technological wheels turning. But in our world it’s the other way round. The Morlocks are in the minority, and they are running the show, because they understand how everything works. The much more numerous Eloi learn everything they know from being steeped from birth in electronic media directed and controlled by book-reading Morlocks. So many ignorant people could be dangerous if they got pointed in the wrong direction, and so we’ve evolved a popular culture that is (a) almost unbelievably infectious and (b) neuters every person who gets infected by it, by rendering them unwilling to make judgments and incapable of taking stands.

"Morlocks, who have the energy and intelligence to comprehend details, go out and master complex subjects and produce Disney-like Sensorial Interfaces so that Eloi can get the gist without having to strain their minds or endure boredom."
Excerpt from Neal Stephenson's In the Beginning ... was the Command Line
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I just tried multiple times with different spellings to create a g+ circle with the name "anarchists" and it wouldn't let me. I changed it to "As" and it went through. Is there some sort of weird censorship going on?
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Big Brother is watching you, my son. (cue threatening music)
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  • Programming Languages Research Lab || Loves: In-depth articles - Programming Languages - Martial Arts (BJJ) - Startups
    Research Assistant, 2010 - present
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Currently
Provo, Utah
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San Diego, CA - Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine - Provo, UT
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Introduction
I like Programming, Computer Science and Startups. If  I can't recognize you and I can't tell you like any of those too from your profile, I'm not going to add you to a circle. Sorry
Education
  • Brigham Young University
    Computer Science, 2010 - present
  • Brigham Young University
    General Education, 2006 - 2007
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Trevor Oakes's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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