Things I’ve Learned from Lately #87

“Things I’ve Learned from Lately” is a regular compilation of articles that have made me a smarter marketer. Hopefully, they’ll help you, too.

Calling Out Patent Malpractice - The patent system has faced a lot of backlash in recent months, and in that spirit the Electronic Freedom Foundation has started Stupid Patent of the Month to highlight the worst of the worst when it comes to overreaching patents.

 Image Source: Wikimedia

Image Source: Wikimedia

The Toothbrush Test - David Gelles looks at the test companies must pass before Google will consider an acquisition. The test, dubbed the toothbrush test, asks a simple question: Is it something you will use once or twice a day, and does it make your life better? The test shows a stark difference between traditional methods of evaluating profitability and working with banks. As marketers we should consider whether or not our ideas pass the toothbrush test.

Kicking the [Coffee] Habit - Coffee is the bane of my existence and also my best friend. It's a go-to office supply and the savior of many projects, but I personally rely on it too much and have a strong feeling I'm not alone. This piece from Eric Jaffe looks at how we become addicted to coffee and how to kick the habit (assuming we want to, of course). The piece evaluates how habits are formed and why our brain is made to accommodate them.

Going Behind the Comcast/Time Warner Merger  - Comcast and Time Warner are close to a merger, and this piece from the Verge looks at what that might mean for consumers. The piece sheds light on a number of concerns while also showing what has been required to become one of the biggest companies in the world.