Friday, December 30, 2011

Cute Baby Photos Can Help Recover Lost Wallets


Strangers are more likely to return lost wallets containing photos of cute babies, according to British researchers. The scientists sprinkled 240 wallets across Edinburgh last year with pictures of either a smiling baby, a puppy, a "happy family," or a "contended elderly couple." It turns out nobody cares about your pooch, retired parents, or smugly superior family life. But that cute wittle baby? Apparently it triggers a "compassionate instinct towards vulnerable infants that people have evolved to ensure the survival of future generations." Finally, an everyday use for evolution!

When faced with the photograph of the baby people were far more likely to send the wallet back, the study found. In fact, only one in ten were hearthearted enough not to do so. With no picture to tug at the emotions, just one in seven were sent back.
According to Dr Wiseman the result reflects a compassionate instinct towards vulnerable infants that people have evolved to ensure the survival of future generations. "The baby kicked off a caring feeling in people, which is not surprising from an evolutionary perspective," he said.
Scientists argue that it would be difficult to genetically code for feeling empathy exclusively towards your own child and much easier to code for feeling empathy towards all children. If you find a baby alone, there is a good chance it belongs to you, making it an effective evolutionary trait, said Dr Wiseman.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Cheryl Murphy: Learning the Look of Love

According to Rubin, normally two people in conversation give each other eye contact anywhere from 30-60% of the time but couples who are in love look at each other 75% of the time during conversation and are slower to break their look away from each other when interrupted.

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Learning the Look of Love: That Sly “Come Hither” Stare

By Cheryl Murphy | October 17, 2011
While it might not be witchcraft, the formula for ‘love at first sight’ remains a mystery. However, if you pop the following ingredients into a kettle: large pupils, long glances, and a lovely, attentive smile, you may not have concocted a bona fide love potion but your witch’s brew could contain some insight into the laws of attraction.
Being an optometrist and all around eye aficionado, I have a deep interest in the connection between the eyes and love. After reviewing many decades of literature and research, I have picked out a few studies that I think help us to understand how love affects our eyes and how our eyes can affect the level of attraction and love we feel for someone else. Let’s start off this “Learning The Look of Love” series by first exploring love and eye contact.
Part One: That Sly ‘Come Hither’ Stare
Let’s pretend it’s Friday night, you’re in a bar and you are people watching. It’s dim in here but what do you see? You may see strangers exchanging glances with each other from across the crowded room. Once their eyes meet if eye contact is established and a look is held, the game of love has begun. A man peers around the room and becomes suddenly intrigued by a woman returning his glance. The glance turns into a gaze. He initially found her beautiful but now the magnetism of her prolonged eye contact has amplified her attractiveness.
Like the man in the bar, we do perceive people as more attractive when they are engaged in eye contact with us and when they shift their direction of gaze towards us as confirmed in experiments performed by Mason et al in 2005. This directed gaze apparently signals their interest and the fact that they find us interesting makes them even more appealing to us. In other words, if someone who you find attractive locks eyes with you, they automatically go up a notch on your love barometer.

Ben Milne: This 28-Year-Old's Startup Is Moving $350 Million And Wants To Completely Kill Credit Cards


There's a tiny 12-person startup churning out of Des Moines, Iowa.
Dwolla was founded by 28-year-old Ben Milne; it's an innovative online payment system that sidesteps credit cards completely.
Milne has no finance background yet his little operation is moving between $30 and $50 million per month; it's on track to move more than $350 million in the next year.
Unlike PayPal, Dwolla doesn't take a percentage of the transaction. It only asks for $0.25  whether it's moving $1 or $1,000.
We interviewed Milne about how he is building a credit card killer and Square rival from the middle of the nation where VCs and press are scarce.
BI: We hear you're making credit card companies angry. How are you doing that?
Ben Milne: Ultimately we're trying to build the next Visa, not the next PayPal.  We're building a human network based on how we think the future of payments will work. The current model needs to be blown up. 
Dwolla started out of my old company.  I owned a speaker manufacturing company and we sold everything directly through a website.  I got really obsessed with interchange fees and how not to pay them.  Every time a merchant gets paid with a credit card they have to give up a percentage.  In my case, I was losing $55,000 a year to credit card companies.  I felt like they were stealing from me -- I was getting paid and somebody was taking money out of my pocket. 
So I thought, how do I get paid through a website without paying credit card fees?  We pitched a bank, and amazingly enough they said, "We'll give it a shot."
That was three years ago, so we've been working on the project for a really long time. In December of last year we figured out how to legally do what we do.
How many transactions are you doing? 

The average transaction volume for Dwolla is right around $500 dollars. We move between $30 and $50 million per month.
What's your story?

I'm 28.  I started my first company, Elemental Design, when I was 18.  I dropped out of University of Northern Iowa and built that. 
I started college because I thought that's where I was supposed to go.  I applied to one college, I got in, went, and realized it wasn't for me.  I had customers so I stopped going to class.

We grew that company from a $1,200 investment to over one million in revenue in four years with three or four people and without outside investment.  The company was running itself and I wanted to work on another project. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

CNBC Transcript: Warren Buffett Explains Why He Bought $10.7B of IBM Stock


BECKY: Wait. Wait a second, IBM is a tech company, and you don't buy tech companies. Why have you been buying IBM?

BUFFETT: Well, I didn't buy railroad companies for a long time either. I—it's interesting. I have probably—I've had two interesting incidents in my life connected with IBM, but I've probably read the annual report of IBM every year for 50 years. And this year it came in on a Saturday, and I read it. And I got a different slant on it, which I then proceeded to do some checking out of. But I just—I read it through a different lens.

JOE: What's the different lens? What's the different slant?

BUFFETT: Well, just like—just like I did with—just like I did with the railroads. And incidentally, the company laid it out extremely well. I don't think there's any company that's—that I can think of, big company, that's done a better job of laying out where they're going to go and then having gone there. They have laid out a road map and I should have paid more attention to it five years ago where they were going to go in five years ending in 2010. Now they've laid out another road map for 2015. They've done an incredible job. First, Lou Gerstner, when he came in, he saved the company from bankruptcy. I read his book a second time, actually, after I read the annual report. You know, "Who Said Elephants Can't Dance?" I read it when it first came out and then I went back and reread it. And then we went around to all of our companies to see how their IT departments functioned and why they made the decisions they made. And I just came away with a different view of the position that IBM holds within IT departments and why they hold it and the stickiness and a whole bunch of things. And also, I read very carefully what Sam Palmisamo...

JOE: Palmisano.

BECKY: Palmisano.

BUFFETT: ...Palmisano, yes, has said about where they're going to be and he's delivered big time on his—on his—on his first venture along those lines.

BUFFETT: The other thing I would say about IBM, too, is that a few years back, they had 240 million options outstanding. Now they probably are down to about 30 million. They treat their stock with reverence which I find is unusual among big companies. Or they really—they are thinking about the shareholder.

JOE: But you're buying this after it's really broken out the new highs this year, new all-time highs.

BUFFETT: We bought—we bought railroads on highs, too.

JOE: Yeah? They sent it—you know, stocks at new lows that, you know, can hit new lows where they...

BUFFETT: Right. I bought—I bought control of—I bought control of GEICO at its all-time high.

BUFFETT: No, I never talked to Sam. I've never talked to Sam. I've got this—I competed with IBM 50 years ago, believe it or not. I was chairman of a company, had, and I testified for IBM in 1980 when the government was attacking about on the antitrust situation. But I've never—I have not talked to Sam or now Ginni.

BECKY: You—this is the second time in the last several months that you've told us about a purchase you've made of a company you've been the reading annual reports for years.

BUFFETT: Right.

BECKY: Bank of America was the first.

BUFFETT: Right. I read those for 50 years.

BECKY: Read those for 50 years and you're looking at companies a little differently. You never really bought tech stocks before. You had always said you don't understand technology stocks.

BUFFETT: Right.

BECKY: Does this mean that this is a new era and you're going to be looking at a lot of tech stocks and I guess chief among them, would you consider Microsoft?

BUFFETT: I—well, Microsoft is a special case because Microsoft is off bounds to us because of my friendship with Bill and if we spent seven months buying Microsoft stock and during that period they announced a repurchase or increase of the dividend or an acquisition, people would say you've been getting inside information from Bill. So I have told Todd and Ted and I apply it myself that we do not ever buy a share of Microsoft. I think Microsoft is attractive but that—but we will never buy Microsoft. It—people would just assume I knew something and I don't, but they would assume it and they would assume Bill talked to me and he wouldn't have. But there's no sense putting yourself in that position.

BECKY: But...

BUFFETT: I can say I've never met Sam but I can't say I've never met Bill.

BECKY: But does this change the rules of the game that you would actually look at technology stocks now?

BUFFETT: I look at everything but most things I decide I can't figure out their future.

BUFFETT: Yeah, it's a—it's a company that helps IT departments do their job better.

JOE: Yeah.

BUFFETT: And if you think about it, I don't want to push the analogy too far because it could be pushed too far. But, you know, we work with a given auditor, we work with a given law firm. That doesn't mean we're happy every minute of every day about everything they do but it is a big deal for a big company to change auditors, change law firms. The IT departments, I—you know, we've got dozens and dozens of IT departments at Berkshire. I don't know how they run. I mean, but we went around and asked them and you find out that there's—they very much get working hand in glove with suppliers. And that doesn't—that doesn't mean things won't change but it does mean that there's a lot of continuity to it. And then I think as you go around the world, IBM, in the most recent quarter, reported double-digit gains in 40 countries. Now, I would imagine if you're in some country around the world and you're developing your IT department, you're probably going to feel more comfortable with IBM than with many companies.

JOE: Well...

BUFFETT: I said I competed with IBM 50 years ago.

BECKY: Yeah.

BUFFETT: We actually started—I was chairman of the board, believe it or not, of a tech company one time, and computers used to use zillions of tab cards and IBM in 1956 or '7 signed a consent decree and they had to get rid of half the capacity. So two friends of mine, one was a lawyer and one was an insurance agent, read the newspaper and they went into the tab card business and I went in with them. And we did a terrific job and built a nice little company. But every time we went into a place to sell them our tab cards at a lower price and with better delivery than IBM, the purchasing agent would say, nobody's ever gotten fired from buying—by buying from IBM. I mean, we probably heard that about a thousand times. That's not as strong now, but I imagine as you go around the world that there are—there's a fair amount of presumption in many places that if you're with IBM, that you stick with them, and that if you haven't been with anybody, you're developing things, that you certainly give them a fair shot at the business. And I think they've done a terrific job of developing that. And if you read their reports—if you read what they wrote five years ago they were going to do and the next five years, they've done it, you know, and now they tell you what they're going to do in the next five years, and as I say, they have this terrific reverence for the shareholder, which I think is very, very important.

And I want to give full credit, incidentally, to Lou Gerstner because when he came in, I was a friend of Tom Murphy's and Jim Burke's, and they were on the search committee to find a solution when IBM was almost broke in 1992, and everybody thought they were going pretty far afield when they went to Lou Gerstner. And look what...

BUFFETT: Well, you don't have to think of—you don't have to think of another one, Joe. And if you read his book, you know, "Who Said Elephants Can't Dance?" it's a great management book. Like I said, I read it twice.

ANDREW: What was it when you're reading the report? I mean, most investors who are trying to invest like you, they're reading annual—what is it in the report that you said, ah, I missed it?

BUFFETT: Well, it was—it was a lot of interesting facts and you know, I recommend you read the report, you know. And I didn't look at the pictures and I'm not sure there were any pictures. I kind of like that, too. But there were—there were lots of things in that report but the truth is, there were probably lots of things in the report a year earlier or two years earlier that you say, why didn't I spot it then? And I think it was Keynes or somebody that said that the problem is not the new ideas, it's escaping from old ones. And, you know, I've had that many times in my life and I plead guilty to it.

BUFFETT: I will tell you one very smart thing that Thomas Watson Sr. said. I knew Thomas Watson Jr. just a little bit. Tom Watson Sr., this applies to stocks. He said, "I'm no genius but I'm smart in spots and I stay around those spots." And that's terrific advice.


Monday, November 14, 2011

What Has Warren Buffett Been Buying? 'Harold'


What Has Warren Buffett Been Buying? 'Harold'


Posted By: Alex Crippen | Executive Producer
cnbc.com
| 14 Nov 2011 | 07:27 AM ET

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway releases its end-of-Q3 stock portfolio snapshot later today, but during his live appearance on Squawk Box this morning Buffett revealed its big secret: Berkshire has bought $10.7 billion worth of common stock in IBM  , or 64 million shares at an average price of $170. 

Buffett's company now owns 5.5 percent of the company but doesn't intend to buy any more. "I wouldn't be talking about it if I did."  He started in March with the goal to buy $10 billion worth of stock.

We've noted that Berkshire's 13-F filings for the first and second quarters said that some holdings were being kept confidential, and it appears this is the buying spree Buffett was keeping under wraps.  (He doesn't want copycat buyers to drive up the price of a stock he's actively acquiring.)

Buffett says he has not talked to the company or current CEO Sam Palmisano about his purchases, but he thinks IBM has done an "incredible job" executing its long-term strategy, has an excellent "road map" for the future, and "respects" its shareholders by being honest with them and doing big stock buybacks.  "They've done all kinds of things right." 

He gives a lot of credit to former CEO Lou Gerstner, and wishes he'd bought the stock back when Gerstner was running the company.  "It was something I should have spotted years earlier."  He decided to start buying this year after reading the company's 2010 annual report.

Buffett typically shies away from technology stocks because he often doesn't "understand" what they do, but told us he'd been "hit between the eyes" by how the company finds and keeps clients.  "It's a company that helps IT departments do their job better. It is a big deal for a big company to change auditors, change law firms," or change IT support. "There is a lot of continuity to it."

At first he gave the Squawkers a one-word puzzle: the name "Harold."  After several minutes of incorrect guesses, Buffett revealed that "Harold" refers to IBM.  The connection: a common nickname for Harold is Hal, HAL 9000 was the name of the computer in the 1968 movie 2001: A Space Odysseyand it's often been associated in people's minds with IBM.

Buffett says he would never buy Microsoft , another computer-related stock, due to his close friendship with Chairman Bill Gates.

Buffett says Berkshire did add to its Wells Fargo position and he thinks Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan is following a "very logical path" to fix the bank.

Asked if he supports the Occupy Wall Street movement, Buffett said because its goals and leadership are unclear it probably won't change things.  He does, however, continue to believe the "super-rich" need to share in the national sacrifice that will be needed to get the federal government's budget deficits under control.

The fight of Richard Rainwater's life


Legacy of a dealmaker
Of all life's cruelties, it seems especially tragic that Richard Rainwater would suffer from this affliction. Rainwater is a self-made billionaire, a Texas incarnation of the Horatio Alger story. But he hasn't built a chain of discount stores or a computer company or even a private equity firm to leave behind. No, Rainwater's business genius has always been his energy and imagination -- his uncanny ability to see where the world is going and find a way to exploit that turn. It was his personal magic that made big deals happen: his ability to pick the right opportunity, the right partners, the right CEO, and then to provide inspiration. The billion-dollar edifice he built was all in his head.
And now it's crumbling away.
Today Rainwater requires 24-hour care. He is unable to walk unassisted. He has trouble swallowing. His speech is almost impossible to understand. "Of anybody I ever met, Richard was the most charismatic, the most outgoing, most hands-on, huggy, high-fiving, jumping-up-and-down, vivacious executive," says Michael Eisner, whom Rainwater helped install as CEO of the Walt Disney Co. (DIS) "And then to have him relegated to this condition that incapacitates him? It's the irony of human existence."
Though Rainwater has usually operated behind the scenes, his impact on the world of business has been immense. He helped create or fix a string of companies, ranging from entertainment (Disney) and health care (Columbia/HCA) to energy (Mesa, Ensco) and real estate (Crescent). Many regard Rainwater as the father of the modern private equity business. "He may be the best deal guy ever," says David Bonderman, co-founder of TPG Capital, the private equity giant. "Richard figured out there was a place for private capital to do aggressive deals, and he did it better than anybody else." Rainwater has been something of a pied piper, too, launching and salvaging careers and helping others build personal fortunes. The list ranges from George W. Bush and Sears Holdings chairman Eddie Lampert to former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach and Florida governor Rick Scott.
The latest chapter of Rainwater's story, told here for the first time, makes painfully clear the democracy of disease. Battling for his life, Rainwater has bankrolled an extraordinary, and characteristically creative, campaign to seek a cure for his rare affliction. But the odds are long. In all probability, there isn't enough time or enough money, even for a one-of-a-kind billionaire.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Bill Gates Talks About the Future

With the convergence of major advances in computing hardware and software, technology is playing an increasingly important role in many aspects of society. In his speech at the University of Washington, Bill discussed important breakthroughs in computer science and engineering that have implications in education, health, and improving the lives of the world’s poorest 2 billion people.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Charlie Rose - Walter Isaacs Interview

An hour with Walter Isaacson, author of "Steve Jobs".  Video Link

Monday, October 24, 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Jobs: 'Find What You Love'


Steve Jobs, who died Wednesday, reflected on his life, career and mortality in a well-known commencement address at Stanford University in 2005. 

Here, read the text of of that address:

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I've ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That's it. No big deal. Just three stories.
 
The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: "We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?" They said: "Of course." My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents' savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn't see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn't interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn't all romantic. I didn't have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends' rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn't have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can't capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it's likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.
 
Again, you can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss.

I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn't know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down - that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn't see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple's current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I'm pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn't been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.

My third story is about death.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: "If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right." It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: "If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?" And whenever the answer has been "No" for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn't even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor's code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you'd have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I'm fine now.

This was the closest I've been to facing death, and I hope it's the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life's change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960's, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: "Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish." It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much.

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