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Good Links – Weekly (July 3, 2010)

This is week two of the Good Links Exchange, with selections from Mitch, Alistair and me. Each week, each of us choses one link each specifically for each of the other two guys, for a total of six links a week. For more info on this little project and the original post, check Mitch’s blog. And here are this week’s choices:

Can A Cognitive Surplus Re-ignite The Flynn Effect?
in Wikipedia

Alistair for Hugh: This is the name for a continuous increase in IQ over time – we don’t know why it happens, but theories include education, sanitation, and so on. We also suspect that it’s leveled out in developing nations. In our discussions of interactive textbooks and the Internet as a platform for education, it’s possible that we can rekindle (no pun intended) the Flynn effect through the ubiquitous access to broadband and Clay Shirky’s Cognitive Surplus; certainly, with Wikipedia just a click away, we’re all smarter on demand. So here’s the Wikipedia entry for the Flynn effect.

The Future of Politics is Whose Infographic You Believe.

Alistair for Mitch: Green technology is both one of the biggest cultural and economic changes of the coming century, and one in which misinformation abounds. In the wake of the oil spill, people are receptive to that change, but communicating complex data on green tech is challenging, particularly with the greenwashing of terms like ‘clean coal’ and the highly politicized debates around nuclear power and ethanol. This illustration of China’s green power does a great job of communicating a lot of information simply. But I want you to look at it through the lens of legislation and politics in a democracy. After Roosevelt, you couldn’t get elected without radio. After Kennedy, television. Obama? The Internet. Legislators will have to resort to messages like this in order to convince people of their position, and the facts and figured will be ‘certified’ by various ‘independent’ groups.

It’s a Mindfield!
[Audio] Natasha Mitchell interviews Lone Frank on All in the Mind.

Hugh for Alistair: Advances in neuroscience are fundamentally shifting our understanding how we humans think, how we exist. ‘All in the Mind’ is Australia National Radio’s weekly show about this shift, hosted by the fabulous Natasha Mitchell. For my money, it’s the best science radio series/podcast in the world. More or less at random, this is a favorite recent episode about the ‘chemical self,’ religious experience, and the ‘I’ in the brain.

It Doesn’t Matter Which You Heard: the Curious Cultural Journey of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”
by Michael Barthel

Hugh for Mitch: I don’t know if Mitch is a Leonard Cohen fan, but I know that he was a music journalist for many years before becoming a digital marketing luminary, so this is my choice for the week. It’s one of the best things about music I’ve read in ages, and is the sort of thing I like to point to when people complain about the Internet and blogs shortening attention spans, or making writing shorter and dumber. As always: it depends what you choose to read.

Win With Web Metrics: Ensure A Clear Line Of Sight To Net Income!
by Avinash Kaushik

Mitch for Alistair: Alistair (literally) wrote the book on web monitoring, but Avinash Kaushik – the Analytics Evangelist for Google and author of both Web Analytics – An Hour A Day and Web Analytics 2.0 – had one of the most fascinating Blog posts earlier this week on what all of this data, monitoring and optimization should mean in terms of bottom-line revenue. As with everything Kaushik posts, it’s timely, super relevant and, above all else, entertaining. So, now you’re monitoring everything online… but is it making you cash?

The ‘Subliminal’ Effects Of Banner Ads.
by Laurie Sullivan

Mitch for Hugh: Hugh recently had an amazing Blog post titled, Death to Design? Death to the Banner Ad?, well, just this week, MediaPost ran this news item from a recent research report that states people may claim to hate banners ads and want them to go bye-bye, but they actually do impact purchase decisions and have a branding effect on the masses. So, as more and more people start using Readability and InstaPaper (like Hugh does), we may find a need for an additional marketing channel to build brand awareness and recall online.