Why are we attracted to beautiful things?


Originally posted on: The Ooomf Blog

“We wear clothing and jewelry. We buy the biggest, most beautiful houses we can afford. We decorate our homes with furniture, rugs, prints, and gardens. We drive finely designed brightly colored automobiles, which we choose for their aesthetic appeal as much as their fuel efficiency. “— Geoffrey Miller in the Mating Mind

I gawk at old stone buildings and the most vivid memories I have are of lush landscapes and forest clearings. I will opt to pay a premium for an app that looks “pretty,” and I am transfixed by websites with exquisite design.

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Important: How to Write a To-Do List


Originally posted on: The Ooomf Blog

I remember trying out my first hour-by-hour schedule to help me get things done when I was 10. Wasn’t really my thing. I’ve since retired the hourly schedule, but I still rely on a daily to-list.

I went through the same motions every night in university. I wrote out, by hand, my to-do list for the next day, ranked by priority. Beside each task I wrote down the number of hours each task should take.

This was and still is a habit and finding a system that works has been a struggle for me. I’ve tested out a variety of methods, bought a number of books on the subject, and experimented: colour-coded writing, post-it note reminders in the bathroom, apps, day-timers….you name it, I’ve tried it.

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On Running Successful Events with Few People and Less Money


Originally posted on: The Founder Project

The Founder Project hosted their first demo day at the Notman House here in Montreal earlier this month. With 7 startups vying for a year of hosting services from softlayer, an entry to the startup program of Fasken Martineau, office space at the Notman house, and a chance to pitch at FounderFuel’s demo day on July 11th.

Each team had 6 minutes to pitch. But it wasn’t exactly a pitch event. The judging took into account the pitch and how much progress the startup made since April 1, 2013 (the deadline for applications).

These are the teams that won:

First place: Outpost, is “the centerpoint of the sharing economy.”  Outpost aggregates non-commercial websites that facilitate travel. It’s a sharing economy amalgamation site. Check it out for yourself: outpost.travel

Second place: Needle, is out to fill a void, where employers can scope out high quality creative talent and give creative talent a platform to meet employers. Check it: needlehr.com

Third place: Plotly, allows you to create the most beautiful graphs on the net in the easiest possible way. They’re here: plot.ly

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On Young People, Work, and Anxiety

echo-railton-9Originally posted on Startup Canada: Young People, Work and Anxiety

“I am a workaholic, which can be pretty horrible when you work alone. No one tells you to stop or take a break, or that you’re burning yourself out. I’d find myself tethered to the internet all day, sitting in a chair for 10 hours and staring at a bright screen. Even when I was “finished,” I’d impulsively check email several times between midnight and 2 a.m. I know it’s dumb and unnecessary and “What could be so important?” and “You need your sleep,” but I did it anyways. I was oblivious to the fact that my nerves were being frayed for hours on end, and that I desperately needed fun face-to-face time with real human beings.”

It’s daunting when you can empathize so deeply to a piece of writing. This is a part of Charlie Hoehn’s recent post “How I cured my Anxiety.” It resonated with me and dozens of other people. Within hours of going live on charliehoehn.com the post received nearly 100 comments (still counting), and has been shared by 2000+ people on Facebook and Twitter.

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