Wednesday, December 28, 2011

My top ten favourite bookmarks from 2011

I browse the internet almost every day (revolutionary, I know).

And when you spend that much time on the internet, your bookmarks folder tends to accumulate a ton of links that you thought were interesting but "didn't have time" (at the time) to read or watch.

So to continue a tradition from last year, I decided to go through my bookmarks folder of 1331 items to write up another year-end blog.

I intended on spending only a few hours on this, but then I quickly noticed about 20 tabs opened in my browser within minutes. That's when I decided to make a shortlist (which you can see at the end of this post), which then took a few more hours of reading. So the lesson here is to read when you come across interesting content!

It's like the end of the year and I just have to find something to procrastinate about. But nonetheless, here are my top ten favourite bookmarks from this year:

10) taxisnyc

For those who want to one day live in New York City, here’s a cool collection of photos taken of probably one of the most iconic colours you’ll see swivelling through the grids at any given time.

It'll keep you going for now.

9) Joe McNally Presents: A 9/11 Rememberance, In Pictures

I remember being in my grade 7 math class when the attacks on 9/11 happened. It was during the morning, and I remember my teacher turning on the radio and trying to put in perspective for us what was going on. The only words I remember her coming up with was "this is going into history books..."

Ten years later, here we are.

This is a wonderful collection of photos related to the World Trade Center by world renowned photographer, Joe McNally.

8) Come on skinny love, what happened here?

I'm not sure if I need to write anything for this one.

7) The anatomy of an agency

For me, there is an overload of infographics out there these days, most of which I find too cluttered to present information well. But here’s a good one:

Click here to view the full infograph

6) The Entrepreneur's Dilemma

Satish is an entrepreneur from Toronto. He's the Partner of Jet Cooper, and is involved with a bunch of other really cool things. I've gotten to know him a bit over the past year through things like rec. basketball, an assignment for my entrepreneurship class, and TEDx.

Earlier this year, I attended freelancecampTO where Satish put on his professor hat and gave a presentation on his experience as an entrepreneur. These are his slides:

5) The secret to being happy is to be thankful

In my marketing consumer behaviour class this past summer, my awesome prof - @kasibruno (who by the way loves to show TED Talks and CBC's Q interviews during lectures) - showed us this segment from the Conan O'Brien Show.

What Louis C.K. says is funny, but true. Maybe we should take a step back.

4) Straight Outta Compton? An interview with Gwyneth Paltrow... by Jay-Z

Earlier this year, I listened to an interview on Q with Gwyneth Paltrow (skip to 19:47), talking about her new cookbook, My Father's Daughter. I never knew much about her prior, but thought she was pretty cool afterwards. Later on that week, I came across this post by Jay-Z on his blog, Life and Times. Apparently, the two thought it would be cool to interview each other.

I agree with Mr. Carter. is fresh.

Check out Paltrow's interview with Jay-Z, too. Definitely worth a read.

3) What can cat videos do for your business? - Catvertising by john st.

john st. is an advertising agency based out of Toronto, focusing on making brands unignorable.

When I came across their other video in the spring (Pink Ponies: A Case Study), what I really enjoyed was their ability to take everything lightly. With all of the focus in the industry on ROI, social media strategies, engagement with the audience, discovering the next big trend, etc., john st. showed that we should all just take a step back and not try to be slick, but just be ourselves. And instead of just saying that their work is about, for example, creating content that is, well, unignorable, they just did it, and in a way that was natural.

With over a million views, here is their video that mocks the popularity of cat videos on YouTube. (See, they can even make viral videos for fun!)

"Nobody wants to see ads anymore. They want cat videos."

2) The Sartorialist - Documentary

I had been following The Sartorialist here and there in the past year or so, and when I came across this documentary around March, for some reason I found it really captivating.

There was something about his work and the way he carried out his work that made me think that fashion could interpret for you a place, a time, an era, a person – a story. This instantly became my main inspiration for the idea of Ryerson Folio.

1) A Sister’s Eulogy for Steve Jobs

A beautiful piece by Mona Simpson in the New York Times on the person who helped changed the way we lived – whether it was through innovative products or helping us believe that creating our own world is possible. Thank you, and farewell, Steve Jobs.


- New York Times: If My Dad Could Tweet
- Emily Haines on writing in Buenos Aires (Video)
- The Walrus: The Meaning of Hockey
- A collection of Andy Bernard's a capella escapades on The Office
- The Atlantic: Working best at coffee shops
- The New Yorker: Sheryl Sandberg & Male-Dominated Silicon Valley
- Emily Haines - Don't Think Twice, It's Alright (Video)
- Spinner Canada: In House With Lights: 'Siberia,' Dirty Pop and Going on 'World of Warcraft' Raids
- Ray Allen Breaks 3 Point NBA Record vs. Lakers 2/10/2011 (Video)
- Comic Sans fights back with famous brands
- The Washington Post: Did the Iraq War have an iconic ending?
- The Business of Blogging with The Sartorialist
- Seth Godin's Blog: Your SXSW agenda (or any conference, for that matter)
- London covering Lights' The Listening (Video)
- The greatest craigslist room rental ad ever
- How to put a stapler in jello
- Louis C.K. Hates Twitter, on Conan O'Brien (Video)
- Each time you hit snooze, this Japanese alarm app posts embarrassing tweets
- 70 creative advertisements that makes you look twice
- Manhattan in Motion (video)
- The Wolowitz Coefficient (The Big Bang Theory)
- Twitpic of the Japan earthquake
- Kris Humphries tweet after the divorce (parody account)
- Current Location (Taken with Instagram at Google)

Honourable mention: What Would Don Draper Do?

Click here to see the rest.