100 Mac Applications We Can’t Live Without

Pixelmator 3.0

Walter Mossberg’s exposé on the rise of the Mac computer for Re/code sums up all the reasons why Macs have become so ubiquitous. But Mossberg believes that the shift to cloud computing has become the great software equalizer. As a long-time Apple watcher, Mossberg should know better. Mossberg fails to note that that Apple’s groundbreaking …

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CRM on the Mac

Contacts-950x475

“We’re all salesman” is one famous adage of the successful. That’s why it’s imperative that you always maintain your contacts in perfect order. While we love our MacBooks and iOS gear, we’ve often wondered why CRM is so challenging on the Mac platform. A large part of the blame lies with Apple itself. While Apple …

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Mattress Innovation

Tuft & Needle

There’s no more opaque business in America than the mattress industry. The art of selling an assembly of cloth, wood and steel springs, or foam as the case may be, is bedeviled by an industry resistant to any kind of change. The good news is mattress manufacturers are no longer sleeping soundly. Mattress sales are …

Middle Class Squeeze

I Love Lucy

When one mentions the middle class it immediately conjures up visions of Father Knows Best, The Brady Bunch or maybe even Everybody Loves Raymond. It’s one of manicured lanes, two-door garages and eat-in kitchens that carry the glamorous moniker of “Hollywood kitchens.” But the world of I Love Lucy is no more. As Edward Luce …

Yoga Culture

Yoga style

Propelled by the vagaries of the Time Compression Ubertrend — the acceleration of life, yoga is now practiced by 200 million people worldwide, including over 100 million in India and 20 million in the U.S. In a time-compressed world, the meditative powers of yoga are now celebrated by an estimated 20 million Americans who practice …

India Style

India style

They’re everywhere on American television, to the surprise of their compatriots. People of Indian origin have rapidly vaulted to the second largest ethnic minority on U.S. television, trailing only Spanish-speaking actors. With its influence rising, like the Good Wife’s Archie Panjabi pictured above, India is poised to become a culture and style trendsetter. This trend …

Time Compression

FedEx

Engineer Percy Spencer at defense contractor Raytheon notices something peculiar. While testing a new vacuum tube, called a magnetron, a candy bar melts in his pocket. Intrigued, Spencer places some popcorn near the tube and watches in awe as kernels begin popping all over his lab counter. And so the microwave oven is born. Raytheon …

Small Homes

Stanford Start Home

Can you live in an 800-square-foot home? You may soon. The days of outsize American homes are coming to an end, judging by the surging chatter about smaller homes. While you may not be able to tell from the 2,400-2,800-square-feet palaces being built around you, several trends point to a very different real estate future. …

Building The Innovative Marketing Stack

Marketing technology

You may or may not be aware that online marketing companies are being acquired at astonishing sums of money—but if you ask marketing folks to name their favorite tools, most will have a hard time naming one or two, let alone three. This is even more remarkable when you consider there are more than 1,000 …

Sony BDP-S6200 Blu-ray Player

Sony BDP-S6200

At the recent 2014 CES Show, Sony debuted a new Blu-ray player, the Sony BDP-S6200 ($180) that based on preliminary feedback is now the player to get. Its main selling feature is a “dual-core” processor that significantly speeds operation. Like the previously recommended Sony BDP-S5100, the Sony BDP-S6200 features integrated Wi-Fi, supports 3D, and offers …

Ford Fiesta ST

Ford Fiesta ST

Last week, I had a chance to test-drive the new 2014 Ford Fiesta ST, Ford Focus ST and Ford C-Max, Ford’s hybrid car. As you can tell from the headline, my favorite of the three was the Fiesta, although the C-Max blew me away in terms of quiet power and gee-whiz visual controls. But it …

Legalizing Marijuana

Smoke?

At CNN, Dr. Sanjay Gupta confesses he has been wrong about marijuana. After examining the mounting evidence that was benefiting medical marijuana users, Gupta admits “Well, I am here to apologize.” A front-page New York Times story joins the growing chorus, concluding that “Warnings voiced against partial legalization – of civic disorder, increased lawlessness and …

Cadillac ATS

Cadillac ATS

Last week we had a chance to test-drive the new Cadillac ATS, the company’s latest attempt to unseat the BMW 3-series and Mercedes C-class hegemony. There’s no question the Cadillac is a kick to drive but can it play in the major leagues? The first thing we should acknowledge is that the ATS is not …

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Woman’s Acceptance Factor

There it was: the umpteenth TV commercial featuring a woman doing the housework. You fill in the brand: PAM, Tide, McCormick’s, or even hip Target — all relegate women to that subsidiary role of “happy homemaker.” You would think the Renaissance thinkers in advertising could come up with something more enlightening. That enlightenment might include …

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Control Freak

The Unwired ubertrend is fueling a powerful subtrend: Control Freak. Spurred by its ability to free users from wires, and jazzed by instant gratification, consumers are increasingly demanding greater control over transactions. In December 2001, I flew Air Canada, using United as a feeder. United lost my suitcase but Air Canada was one of the …