March 1, 2013

The Weeklies #248

The Weekly Photographic Awesomeness North Korea used to make you hand over your cell phone when you entered the country. No more. Jean Lee - the AP's Korean bureau chief started an Instagram account to share her shots of the rarely-seen North Korea. They're awesome.

The Weekly Cool Idea. What if you made a soccer ball that built up energy as you played with it? Then added a way to plug things - like lights - into it? Someone's done just that: Soccket

The Weekly Uncool Idea. The fact that sequestering has now gone into effect makes me lose just a bit of my hopeless optimism about people and politics.

The Weekly Music. I can't say enough good things about musician Steven Wilson. His latest album, The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) is simply brilliant as is the video made to accompany the release of the album's title track. I dare you to watch this and not be moved.

The Weekly Read. Last year I raved about Hugh Howey's Wool series. It was not only one of the best sci-fi series I've read recently but one of the best overall. While Howey closed that particular chapter, he has taken us back in time before the events portrayed in Wool. His second entry in this prequel series - Second Shift: Order is good but not nearly as compelling as the first Second Shift, and far less powerful than the Wool series as a whole. All that said, it's hard to go wrong with any part of Howey's series.

The Weekly Issue and Question. CEO Marissa Myers is now requiring all Yahoo teleworkers to return to the office permanently. There's a lot of debate around this. The questions are:
a) Will it help Yahoo?
b) Does it make any difference where people work?

Posted by Chris at March 1, 2013 7:39 AM

I'm shocked at this. However, Yahoo! is a company in peril. If she's doing shocking thing to re-organize the company then I understand that. However, I don't see this as a trend. Working from home saves money, provides a good work-life balance, and has proven to get more out of employees than if they were in the office.

Posted by: Brad at March 1, 2013 11:17 AM

I worked from home for almost 5 years...before our company got an office (we all worked from home). I work from home when I can or I need to and this is pretty flexible with my office. I have found I get more done at home than I do in the office. too many distractions at the office sometimes!

I think the trend is toward home offices. Yahoo's got issues, that is the least among them, unless they were hoping it would clean house without having to have official layoffs.

Posted by: cyndy at March 1, 2013 12:06 PM

I've been meaning to recommend the Wool series to you. My book club read it in January and we all really liked it. I haven't read the prequels yet...

Posted by: Judy at March 1, 2013 12:47 PM

Not really surprised by this. In my experience, large, stable, established companies have more flexibility with allowing employees to telecommute. The smaller 'start-up' types need the in-person dynamics to get ideas flowing, etc. Yes, Yahoo is large and established, but with all their problems these days, they needed to get back to a 'start-up' mentality, since obviously the old ways of doing things wasn't going to work anymore.
I personally work from home on occasion, but that's on top of 40 hours in the office, not in place of it.

Posted by: J at March 1, 2013 1:24 PM