What You Need to Know Today: October 2

Good afternoon, Early Risers!

Here’s what you need to know


Smartphone homescreens are dead. In April, I shared a story with Daily Brief readers about the future of apps. The takeaway was that smartphone users will no longer need to open apps — everything will be done through notifications and widgets. Fast-forward to today — and this prediction is coming true. “Notifications, widgets, and search are suddenly the best ways to get around your iPhone. More activity seems to begin with a swipe instead of a tap: Actions are replacing what we used to call apps,” says Quartz. This weekend try experimenting with the unscreen homescreen.

Why technology won’t save the world. “The technology industry itself has perpetuated the idea that technology will solve the world’s problems. I think it’s an overstatement when [Google executive chairman and former CEO] Eric Schmidt tells people that thanks to technology, no country can remain isolated. Everyone wants to believe the work they do is good for society. But a lot of people in the industry have drunk a little too much of their own marketing Kool-Aid. The reality is that powerful technologies will work in exactly the direction we point them. Almost paradoxically, as more technology becomes available, human judgment and wisdom matter more.” This is an important read for startups. The idea that you need to keep up with the tech-Joneses can lead to some serious problems. Reading this should help you avoid most of them.

+ How BuzzFeed is revolutionizing the crossword puzzle. As an entrepreneur, you should always be thinking of new ways to keep customers coming back. Why do you think there’s a #NowYouKnow section at the end of this newsletter? Steal this idea from BuzzFeed.


How editors think. “If your agent cannot get an editor to return a phone call or email, he’s not an agent. He’s an actor. He may be a wonderful actor, but he will never bring you a deal.” Shawn Coyne tells it like it is in this follow-up article to “What Good Agents Know.”

Coffee Peanut Butter is for closers. You probably heard the news — Coffee Peanut Butter is now a thing. Before you get your hand stuck in the coffee peanut butter jar, make sure you know these 12 tips for closing deals (#1 is terrible — in a good way).

+ This is hilarious. Try one of these 9 nodding strategies at your next meeting.


Are fitness selfies stressing you out? Apparently, millennials can’t even with fitness selfies.

In case you missed it. Yesterday, a controversial story broke about a new app being called the ‘Yelp for people.’ As you can imagine, people didn’t like the idea. Some saying, “#peeple sounds like an app that wants to increase the suicide rate.” This app clearly has struck a nerve. I’m interested to hear what Daily Brief readers think? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


From Tim Ferriss’ podcast, Scott Adams: The Man Behind Dilbert

How to Find Good Content Using The Body Model

Scott Adams: Your brain can’t find good content. Not directly, in an intellectual context. Obviously the brain is involved. What I mean is that as I’m thinking of these ideas and their flowing through my head, I’m monitoring my body. I’m not monitoring my mind. And when my body changes, I have something that other people are going to care about, too.

Tim Ferriss: That’s cool. I like that. That means posture, or what type of indicators are there?

Scott Adams: I’ll tell you. If I’m thinking of, let’s say, a particular set-up for a joke, I’ll think of the joke and then quite often I’ll audibly go *snorting sound.* And it wasn’t planned. It’s sort of a half-laugh you do by yourself when you think of something funny but you don’t want to do a full-laugh. There are other times when… So for example, I told you the story about being in the shower and thinking of the entire plot for God’s Debris in one moment. My entire body lit up. When I had the idea for the blog post I wrote that recently lit up the internet, I felt it as a full-body experience long before I wrote it. Now, with Dilbert — if you do this long enough — the things that used to be technique, become second-nature, and are now baked into your personality so that you’re kind of moving art into the domain of craft. For example, I know, because I’ve learned over time that there are six dimensions of humor, and if I use two of them, I’ve got a joke. If I use three of them, it’s probably going to be a really good joke. But that’s not enough. There’s something about it — that X factor — that thing you can’t put your finger on that just makes your body move. If you can’t get that, no craft in the world can survive.

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