Archive for July 26, 2011

The State Of The Web Right Now (Humor)

Matthew Inman


From the launch of Google + to the release of Apple’s new operating system, the last few months have been jam-packed with major tech and Internet developments.

Matthew Inman aka “The Oatmeal,” does a good job of capturing the roller-coaster ride of changes this summer in this humorous illustration below. Check out the full graphic at The Oatmeal.

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See the full infographic at The Oatmeal


"Panegyric," "Immiscible," "Churlish," And 47 Other Words NYT.com Readers Don’t Know

new york times words

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Boehner


Panegyric (“a eulogistic oration or writing“) appeared once on NYTimes.com between January 1, 2011 and July 14, 2011.

Readers looked up the definition 528 times, making it the word looked up the most per article.

I Love Charts offers up a wonderful list of the 50 most frequently looked up words on the site.

The top honor goes to “anathema,” which is only looked up 104 times per appearance, but has been in 37 articles. “Austerity” is second with 2,565 look ups (9 per appearance * 325 appearances).

We’re not sure what this list says – probably that we need a better vocabulary, both individually and collectively – but it’s an interesting read.

This project hopes to make the .app TLD the home for all apps

The news officially came down in June — ICANN, the governing body of Internet domain names, would soon begin allowing anyone to buy words and turn them into top level domain extensions. No longer would we be bound to .com, .net and the like but instead we could have a site such as TheNextWeb.tech.

Of course it didn’t take long for savvy web entrepreneurs to start coming up with ideas on how best to use the new open-ended TLD system. One such group, calling itself “The .app Project” is looking to secure the .app TLD in order to turn it into a domain “run for and by software developers who produce apps for iPhone, Android, Windows Phone as well as desktop platforms such as Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X.”

While Apple users are somewhat familiar with calling something by a .app file extension, soon Mail.app could actually send someone to Apple’s Mail application page where they could find more about the product. Of course, there could be some huge financial benefit to the group as well, as application owners pay top dollar to reserve their slot in the domain. The consumer (in this case, the app owner) should get an added layer of protection from the .app domain, as well, according to .app Project CEO Matthew Baxter-Reynolds:

“In the world of current gTLDs, such as .com there’s no in-built control over cybersquatting or intellectual property. What we can do with .app is design it from the ground up to protect the intellectual property of software developers.”

For now, it’s all about raising cash. The group is looking to raise just shy of half a million dollars in two stages. The first stage will go to pay for the ICANN “evaluation fee” of $185,000. After that, the remaining raise will go to fund the initial stages of operation for the project. Fortunately, according to ICANN, the shortest time that the evaluation will take is 9 months and that’s assuming that everything goes as planned. That should leave plenty of time for getting things into working order for the .app Project.

For now, if you want to pre-register, you can do so. You’ll have to understand, though, that there’s a pretty judicious process for who gets what .app name. Pre-registration will allow you to sign up for the same domain as another person or company and then it will be decided at a later term as to which one should hold the name once it’s available.

There isn’t a lot of information, just yet, as to how that decision process will work. There’s also the uncomfortable thought of putting your domain name entirely into the hands of someone else where, if challenged, you could lose it. If all goes as is stated, however, it should prove to be a great benefit to app owners and developers around the world.

Mark Suster: Group Texting Companies Are Doomed

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Republican Senator To Chris Matthews: A Balanced Budget Amendment Would Hurt The Current Economy

BILL O'REILLY: It Is Impossible For The Norway Bomber To Be A Christian


Cloud and digital media startups have a real chance to lead the next chapter of tech innovation.

Group texting companies? Not so much.

Mark Suster, venture capitalist at GRP Partners, shares with us why he is most excited about these trends and what specific companies he is looking into.

Watch below for a detailed breakdown of how cloud and digital advertising are changing the tech industry.

 

Produced By: Kamelia Angelova and Simone Foxman

Don’t Miss:

Mark Suster: Here’s How Entrepreneurs Should Be Raising Money Now 

• David Pakman: The Highs And Lows Of Being An Angel Investor

• David Pakman On A Possible Tech Bubble: “There Is A Lot Of Bad Behavior”

• There Are Huge Investment Opportunities In Social Data Targeting

Windows Phone Mango released to manufacturing

It is official at last: the Windows Phone Mango update has been released to manufacturing. That Mango has ‘gone RTM’ is not surprising, as a phone that employs the software is set to be unveiled in mere hours.

Phones designed for and running Mango have been rumored to go on sale in either August or September, with the earlier date becoming more likely as time goes along and new information in uncovered.

The Windows Phone blog outlined the current status of the code:

This marks the point in the development process where we hand code to our handset and mobile operator partners to optimize Mango for their specific phone and network configurations. Here on the Windows Phone team, we now turn to preparing for the update process. The Mango update for current Windows Phone handsets will be ready this fall, and of course will come pre-installed on new Windows Phones.

This explains what we already knew: Forthcoming handsets will have Mango installed from sale, while current phones are going to be forced through an extensive update process. With the previous Windows Phone 7 update, NoDo, there was a fiasco involved with getting the code to extant handset owners. Microsoft simply cannot afford a repeat performance.

As always, we invite you to read our hands on coverage of Mango. The software had been originally promised to be released before this year’s holiday season, a time frame that the company has handily complied with.

You can read the news of the first upcoming Mangoed handset here.

Facebook launches Facebook for Business. Your move, Google+

Surely you’ve seen the talk about business profiles on Google+ lately. In fact, our own profile for The Next Web was shut down (unsurprisingly) after Google+ clarified its terms of service to say that only people were allowed to have them. In short, if you want your business’ name to appear in search results on Google+, there’s only one way to do it for now.

Facebook has clearly seen the buzz, too. It should come as no surprise then that the site has rolled out a new Facebook for Business section which details some best practices and shows how Stories, Ads and Pages can all work to increase your business.

The design of the sub-site is well done, highlighting step-by-step methods for putting together your pages, running ads and detailing who will see what, depending on the interaction. Interestingly, Facebook is calling almost everything a “Sponsored Story” (PDF link), regardless of if it’s a checkin, a Like to a page or a share.

From our sources, stories is Facebook’s “way of saying conversations about your brand, going on in the Facebook universe”. This is in pretty sharp contrast to Facebook Stories, which still exists as a way to share “collective experiences” that people on the site have had together.

It’s worth noting, however, that our contact with Facebook has stated that Facebook wants to “inspire small businesses by seeing how other businesses have found success on Facebook by sharing their stories.” That clearly leads us to believe that Facebook Stories will start seeing a bit more business-oriented content, in the coming months.

In all, it’s a great addition for Facebook, and it’s timely at that. While Google is still ironing out exactly how business profiles will work on the Google+ service, Facebook has stepped up with a flashing sign to show people exactly how they can succeed using Facebook for Business.

Is it time for a more civil discourse?

Visit the Qwest resource center for relevant briefs and reports to help you better manage your enterprise. Learn how smart businesses harness the power of customer data to improve satisfaction and sales: Unleashing the Power of Customer Data.

bigpicture150.jpgThe Internets have always been a place that cultivates the odd duck, the passionate one, the recondite techie who doesn’t quite fit in. Lately, it seems that, just like being an airline passenger, things are getting a bit nastier as we get more crowded in the clouds. The friendly skies are somewhat less so.

Barry Ritholtz, a financial journalist and speaker, has this to say to warn people who are about to post a comment on his blog the Big Picture:

“Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data, ability to repeat discredited memes, and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Also, be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor even implied. Any irrelevancies you can mention will also be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.”

Of course, one could turn off comments on one’s site completely. Or at least try to vet the comments that are coming through to a “real” email address, something other than a random Webmail account. But if the whole nature of the Web is to improve community and bring about better discussions, this can be counter-productive.

Then there is this frightening site, The Blacklist, which is coming online next week at theblackli.st. “The purpose of this website is to expose people that suck and save others from wasting their time, energy or money on them.” (What you don’t know the .st domain? It refers to two small islands off the coast of West Africa, yet another national domain that has been co-opted for commerce.) Say your boss has done you wrong and you want to level the score. You bring up this site and post some information (anonymously, of course). While the owners (who aren’t on the whois registry of course) say they aren’t interested in slander, the potential for this site to be an open chest wound loom large.

Of course, if no one posts anyone to this list, it becomes less useful and less potent. But can the Internets ignore something so tempting? I don’t know. Especially since the owners will pay a buck per submission, and are advertising on Craigslist.

What many sites, including ReadWriteWeb, are doing is bringing on board folks who understand online communities and have direct community management responsibilities. This is becoming an increasingly important position, and it requires a rare skill of technological and psychological flair and finesse. I think more enterprises should consider this a formal requirement for any modern website.

I think that Ritholtz, in an odd way, sums things up nicely. Perhaps if we all took a moment to chill and just take a couple of deep breaths that might help. Now if we could only work on the airline passengers to ratchet things down next.

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The Internets have always been a place that cultivates the odd duck, the passionate one, the recondite techie who doesn’t quite fit in. Lately, it seems that, just like being an airline passenger, things are getting a bit nastier as we get more crowded in the clouds. The friendly skies are somewhat less so.
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Humble Bundle Launches Its Third Pay-What-You-Want Video Game Offer

humble3.jpgThe Humble Bundle is set to launch its latest package deal today, continuing its successful “pay-what-you-want” business model with the release of a new bundle containing 5 indie games.

This bundle includes: Crayon Physics Deluxe, Cogs, VVVVVV, Hammerfight, and And Yet It Moves. As with the previous Humble Bundles, these games are all available cross platform (several of which are making their Mac and Linux debuts with this offer) and are DRM-free.

Nerd Fitness: From 60 pounds overweight to 6-pack abs

This is part of a new series on The Next Web, in partnership with Steve Kamb at Nerd Fitness. Guides to keeping fit, without giving up your geek lifestyle.

“Meet my friend Saint, who has one of the most incredible success stories I have EVER seen.” [Steve Kamb, Nerd Fitness]

Saint and I grew up together in Sandwich, Massachusetts, and fast became friends when we were on the same basketball team in 5th grade. We shared a love for video games too.

We maintained a great friendship through high school, and even though we went our separate ways for college and in life after graduation, we stayed in close contact by meeting up online to play games such as like Everquest and Everquest 2, and exchanging hours of useless conversation daily on Gchat.

After graduating college, Saint took a desk job as a computer programmer and watched as his weight slowly ascended…like most other average Americans. Over the past two years, he was able to steadily reverse this process and had an incredible breakthrough, one that transformed him forever.

And here’s how Saint did it…

January 2009: 240 pounds

Here’s Saint at his heaviest, weighing in at 240 pounds over two years ago.

One day, I received a Gchat message from Saint saying that he “wanted to get in shape.”  He had woken up that morning, looked in the mirror, and decided that he wasn’t happy with his life.  At only 24-years old, he realized he was heading down a path that would lead to a life far less epic than he wanted. It was time for a change.

At this point, I told Saint what I tell everybody who says that they “want to get in shape”. Start strength training, and sort out your diet.

Saint wasn’t really interested in strength training at this point, nor could he afford a gym membership, so he did what most people do when they want to lose weight – he ate less bad food, tried to eat more good food, and exercised more. Saint increased his hours of cardio on a weekly basis, consumed less calories and lessened his intake of processed food. By sticking to this programme, he lost around 30 pounds in 3 months.

Obviously, 30 pounds in three months is quite an achievement, which I chronicled here.  A combination of calorie counting, healthier breakfasts, more protein, and increased cardio will naturally lead to weight loss. Saint settled in at around the 205-pound mark within 3 months of his health kick commencing.

However, Saint wasn’t satisfied. Hovering at around 23% body fat, he felt like he had more changes to make. He attempted the same thing for the next year, eating less and moving more to get down to a single-digit body-fat percentage.

January 2010: 206 pounds

After another nine months of half-heartedly trying to get thinner, Saint’s body-weight stubbornly remained at the 206-pound. mark. It was then that Saint emailed me, saying:

“Steve, I don’t think there’s going to be anything left of me if I lose another 25 pounds (which would have been the proper BMI for his height), and there’s no way I’ll ever get under 200 pounds! Let’s go nuts for a second…what if I want to look like Vin Diesel or Ryan Reynolds? What do I need to do?”

Again, I reiterated to the man: “Saint, if you make your diet flawless, focus on strength training, and become militant in your dedication to the cause, you can get there.”

However, it wasn’t yet Saint’s time to become inspired, so he jumped back and forth between various programs like p90x and insanity trying to find something that worked for him.

As you know, you can’t force inspiration and motivation. It has to come from within.

And so another year went by…

December 2010: 203 pounds, 21% body fat

“Steve, I made a huge mistake”, said Saint. “Uh, okay…how much money do you need?”, I retorted.

“No it’s not that…I made a bet with my friends”, replied Saint. “I’m getting married in June 2011, and I want to be in incredible shape. I want to see my abs when I go on my honeymoon, because I’ll be looking at those pictures for the rest of my life. I bet my friends that I’d cut my body fat percentage in half and get into single digits by Memorial Day or I owe them $500.”

So, beginning in early January 2011, Saint started tracking every possible metric for his body: his body fat percentage, measurements of his waist, hips, chest, shoulders and thighs, and also took a picture every two weeks to make sure he was heading in the right direction. He also tracked his meals for a few weeks so that we could analyze together what was working and what wasn’t.

Again, I pushed Saint towards strength training, explaining that drastic changes would need to happen if he was going to get drastic results.

It was at this point that I fully introduced and educated Saint on the Paleo Diet, but he wasn’t ready to go all-in with it yet.  He was also still hesitant to dive head-first into strength training, so he signed up for some more free cardio/boxing classes at his office’s gym, continued to occasionally follow the p90x program, and put his diet efforts into Tim Ferriss’s 4-Hour Body diet.

Saint hoped this would be enough to get him there.

February 2011: 197 pounds

After six weeks of a cleaned-up diet (but still not Paleo), hundreds of crunches (not my recommendation), and hours of cardio classes, Saint had lost around six pounds. This was a step in the right direction, right?

Well, sort of. But not completely.

Saint had been tracking every metric listed above, and I noticed that his weight was dropping proportionally faster than his body fat percentage, and he wasn’t seeing a big enough change from picture to picture. This meant he was losing too much muscle along with the fat. Crap.

Saint’s dedication wasn’t the problem though. He was working out for hours upon hours each week and ‘eating right’, but he wasn’t getting the results he wanted. He emailed me in a panic and freaked out, horrified that he was going to be $500 less wealthy come Memorial Day. His body fat wasn’t disappearing the way he wanted it to and he was worrying about every single aspect of his day. I distinctly remember having to calm him down on a daily basis via email.

In my opinion, if you look at the pictures you can definitely see a difference between February and January – but Saint wasn’t losing the right kind of weight – he was losing fat along with a bunch of muscle.

Desperate for more consistent results, Saint finally gave in and threw himself into strength training, signed up for a proper gym, and used his free personal trainer sessions to learn how to train properly: deadlifts, squats, overhead presses, pull ups, dips, and more.  He put his focus on getting stronger and lifting heavier, while still playing basketball on his days-off to stay active and push his body. He started training with his buddy who helped him push harder and lift heavier.

After I shared a few articles with him from Mark’s Daily Apple, Saint became hooked and decided to go full Paleo with his diet.

This is when I noticed a change in Saint. He stopped worrying about how many crunches to do (incidentally, the correct answer is none) and how many calories he burned during a particular exercise class. Saint just focused on clean eating and heavy lifting while playing basketball for fun.  He stopped eating beans, cut out almost all carbs completely other than vegetables, and focused only only consuming things like meat, eggs, fish, vegetables, nuts, and fruits.  He didn’t count calories, he just ate when he was hungry.

It was during this time that Saint became one of the most dedicated individuals on this planet.

April 2011: 196 pounds, 9.9% body fat

Over the next two months, Saint transformed…and I’m not just talking about his body composition.

Each picture in the montage below was taken over the course of January to April, resulting in a body fat percentage reading of 9.9% in early April (two months ahead of schedule), and a percentage even lower than that by early May.  His weight barely dropped at ALL in these two months, but I think you’ll see from the picture that he was able to have just a tiny bit (ha!) of success.

He freaking did it, WAY ahead of schedule.

This is a picture of Saint from May 5th, four weeks ahead of schedule, with something like 8% body fat.

Over the past five months, Saint’s Gchat messages to me have changed from “I need to lose weight” to “holy crap I just dead-lifted 225-pounds for the first time today,” and “oh man I just did a pull up!”

He put his focus on getting stronger and faster, and his body changed accordingly.  He stopped complaining about not being able to eat certain foods and just “went to work.” He ate the right things and politely refused the things that didn’t align with his goals.

Not surprisingly, he started to see results that most people would kill for.  Here are all of Saint’s pictures from January through to May. Click on the image below for a better view:

Remember that scales don’t always tell the whole story.  As you can see in the chart below, Saint only lost a total of seven pounds in those five months, and even started gaining weight back at the end. In fact, he only lost 0.2 pounds from mid-February to mid-April.  However, during that time he also lost 6-8% of his body fat, which means that he actually lost a LOT (around 15 pounds or so) of fat. And he packed on a hell of a lot of muscle.

Now, these results certainly aren’t typical, but incredible gains of strength and muscle are certainly possible if a person is beginning serious training for the first time.

Why was Saint successful?

After two years of messing with various diets, spending a few months doing various exercise programs on and off, throwing countless hours into cardio and aerobics classes, why was Saint suddenly successful this time? Although people’s bodies react differently to different stimuli, and different forms of diets and workouts will yield different results for everybody, I’m confident that Saint was successful for these reasons:

Competition: Saint never had any sort of incentive to get in shape in the past. He just wanted to ‘lose weight’ but had no timeline or reason to actually achieve results. Because of that, every effort was a half-assed attempt that quickly fizzled-out when he got busy or something new came along to distract him. Thanks to this competition, all of a sudden Saint had to get to 10% body fat by Memorial Day or he would have lost $500. Sounds like a pretty solid incentive to me!

Specific goals: On top of the competition, Saint was successful because his goals went from incredibly vague to ultra-specific. Instead of trying to ‘get in shape’, Saint had a specific goal (10% body fat or less) by a specific date (Memorial Day 2011).  With the thought of losing $500 if he didn’t hit his number branded into his brain, he focused solely on taking steps towards this goal every single day.

Education: For the past two years, Saint had tried to get in shape the best way he knew how: by moving more and eating less. Although it was enough to get him down 30-pounds and into relatively good shape, he had been consistently losing muscle along with fat and wasn’t where he wanted to be. For most people, Saint’s picture from January would be a great place to end up. However, Saint had an epic goal, so he started to do research on how to get there, paying closer attention to the links and videos and routines that I shared with him. It was this education and research that lead him to his most important discovery:

The Paleo Diet: If you are interested in getting to an incredibly low body fat percentage, the most effective way to get there is diligently following the Paleo Diet – I have no doubt in my mind that this one change was responsible for a huge part of Saint’s success. I am a strong endorser of this type of diet, regardless of whether or not people believe this is how cavemen used to eat, I know it freaking works. I’d guess that over the past three months Saint has probably been 98% successful with his meals being full-paleo: almost no carbs, only meat, eggs, fish, vegetables, some nuts and some fruits.

Strength training: If this were a movie, the Paleo Diet would have won Best Actor and strength training would have won best supporting actor. I am not surprised at all that Saint’s body composition started to change drastically as soon as he started to seriously strength train. Rather than doing hours of cardio, Saint dumped his focus into lifting weights…and lifting heavy. As we’ve learned from Mark Twight (the trainer of the actors from the movie 300), “appearance is a consequence” of fitness.  Serious strength training allowed him to lose the RIGHT KIND of weight – just the fat, not the muscle.

Meticulous Measuring: If Saint hadn’t been tracking his body fat percentage, taking bi-weekly photos, or taking measurements, he might never have known back in February that he needed to adjust his path – his weight was dropping but his body fat percentage wasn’t.  Luckily, he WAS taking measurements every week, which allowed him to notice the lack of change and was able to make adjustments on the fly. He also tracked his workouts, which meant he knew exactly how much he needed to lift each workout to be stronger than last time.  You’ve already seen his meticulous photo taking, here are his measurements up until he hit 10% body fat.

A support team: Saint and I would talk almost daily about his goals, what was working, what he was struggling with, and how much closer he was to success. He knew he had somebody to lean on whenever things got tough, somebody to share his successes with, and somebody that wouldn’t judge him. Constant accountability made sure Saint stayed on that tiny straight and narrow path he needed to succeed. On top of that, he had a buddy, Cliff, that worked out with him every day; they pushed each other to be stronger and faster with each and every workout

No Excuses: I’m not gonna lie; the old Saint complained a lot – “I don’t have enough time, I’m not getting results, it’s too hard, I can’t give this up, blah blah blah.”  However, with the new Saint, every single day was an opportunity to succeed. Saint and I would yell at each other back and forth on Gchat to keep each other pumped up even when one of us was down/sick/feeling bad.  Our term? “RAH,” which we decided was a war cry somebody would yell after doing something epic.  So, every day, we’d Gchat each other: “rah?” “RAH!” and say things like “I just did my first pull up, RAH” or “I’m sad and feel like crap…time to go do 100 burpees, RAH.”

Doing a Gchat search for the number of times “RAH” was used over the past five months would probably make my computer explode.

Dedication: I’m not gonna lie, I thought Saint was dead in the water when he took this bet – I had seen him struggle on and off for two years without getting the results he wanted. I didn’t expect this time to be any different. However, Saint attacked this challenge with a passion I have never seen before – rarely eating a bad meal, always taking his measurements, never missing a workout, often throwing in an extra high-intensity workout or basketball session on off-days to get results. He made incredible sacrifices, drastically changed many parts of his lifestyle, said no to many obligations, and refused to eat meals that were outside of his goals.

A change of mind: I considered copying some of Saint and my chat transcripts from the past two years on here, but I figured I wouldn’t subject you to the hours of dumb inside jokes in between small lines about fitness. Just know that Saint used to be of the “I need to lose weight/if I do 1,000 sit ups a day will that work/and how many grams specifically of _______ nutrient do I need to eat?” mindset. Like many others, he was worried about every little detail, sweating the small things and expecting instant results while failing to see the big picture. Now, Saint focuses on getting stronger, eating when he’s hungry (provided it’s Paleo), and now he’s in the best shape of his life and has more energy than ever before.

Never satisfied: Saint got to 10% body fat 6-weeks ahead of schedule…and then continued to lift heavy and eat right. Rather than celebrate with a huge pile of cookies and days off from the gym, Saint started asking “okay what do I need to do now to build more muscle?”, and “if I can do two pull-ups now, how much longer before I can do 10?”  He’s an unstoppable machine at this point, constantly striving to be better, motivated to get stronger, and unsatisfied with his previous successes. Saint has become a completely different person, in all of the right ways.

And this is all coming from a guy who just a few short months ago wouldn’t consider serious weight training and thought that following the Paleo diet would be impossible. Now, Saint says: “It’s just kind of what I do…and seems really easy.”  To me, his mental transformation is more impressive than his physical transformation.

Saint is my hero

What can you learn from this?

I think there’s quite a few lessons that we can take from Saint. Your goals might be different (lose 100 pounds, gain twenty pounds of muscle, run a marathon, whatever), but there’s still a whole lot of awesomeness that can be gleaned from today’s success story. Here’s a handful of pullout points:

Set specific goals: Don’t ‘try to get in shape.’  Determine specifically what ‘in shape’ means to you. Quantify it, put a time-stamp on it, and then start taking direct steps in that directions.

DECIDE IF YOU REALLY WANT IT: People tell me all the time that they want to “get abs” or “pack on muscle” but immediately start to backtrack once I tell them what to do. “But I can’t give that up” or “but what if I did this instead?”  Remember, if what you were doing was working, you’d already want to be where you want to be. If you want incredible results, you’re going to need to make incredible sacrifices. If you’re satisfied with 80% of the way there, there’s nothing wrong with that…just don’t expect to get into the 99th percentile with anything less than 99% of your potential effort.

Make it a challenge: I’m not telling you to put up 500 bucks to force yourself into exercise…but I’m not telling you that it’s a bad idea either. Rather than being angry and associating exercise with a negative feeling (which makes it easier to skip), focus on realigning your attitude.  Saint created a negative association with not exercising (losing $500), and as he started exercising he added a positive correlation to it (feeling better and looking better). This shift in his thinking built up momentum and carried him forward.

Your diet is the most important thing: Don’t try to outrun your fork. Hours of cardio can only get you so far when it comes to getting into elite shape. Instead, focus on cleaning up your diet and you will have far greater success more quickly. More real foods, less fake foods, grains, and other carbs, and maximize vegetables. It doesn’t need to be difficult.  

Strength train: Had Saint never started lifting weights, he might have made it down to 10% body fat but certainly wouldn’t have the muscle mass that he does now.  Fortunately, he put his time and effort into getting stronger and faster, which helped him keep the muscle he already had while also adding new muscle; it also allowed him to only shred the fat and keep the good stuff. I’m not telling you to join a gym, but I am telling you to start doing some form of strength training because it’s so damn important. Although I haven’t set foot in a gym in five months, I’ve been able to pack on eight to ten pounds of muscle in that time by following the body weight routines in the Rebel Strength Guide. You don’t need a gym, but you do need a plan that pushes you to get stronger.

“But I’m a woman and I don’t want to get too bulky!”: Unless you’re on steroids or eating 5,000 calories a day, you will NOT get bulky…not only that, but heavy strength training is the only way to get that “toned” look you’re after. I’ve also featured a female success story that is full of strength training with barbells and heavy weights…and with awesome results.

Track your results: And I don’t just mean stepping on a scale.  Take measurements.  Take photos.  Buy a body fat caliper and test yourself every few weeks. You’ll be able to tell through comparison if what you’re doing is working. If you’re not getting the results you’d like, then you’ll have to make changes – Saint decided to go full Paleo and strength training after deciding his measurements, photos, and body fat weren’t where they should be.  The more you can track, the better chance you’ll have of succeeding.

Who’s on your support team? Who do you turn to when you’re having a bad day? Who do you share your successes and struggles with?  It’s okay if you exercise alone – there’s a whole community of people waiting to welcome you with open arms and help. You don’t need to go it alone.

Are you struggling with crossing a plateau? Would you like to see more success stories? Do you have any questions for Saint? I’ll see if I can convince him to come into the comments section below and answer your queries.

THE GOOGLE INVESTOR: Baidu Continues To Push Google Aside, Dominates In China (GOOG)

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GOOG Up Against The Market 
As the debt ceiling gridlock continues and the adjusted seasonal home prices’ fall, markets continue to sell off. Shares of GOOG are up, however, against a volatile tech tape. Catalysts include continued Android momentum in the smartphone and tablet markets; regaining ground in China; updated software, adoption and media partners for Google TV; the roll-out of Google Music and social network Google+; and progress in other newer initiatives (location-based services, mapping, gaming, Chromebooks, etc.). The stock trades at approximately 13x Enterprise Value / EBIT, inexpensive relative to peers and historical trading levels.

ATT Eases Fragmentation For Android Developers (PCMag)
All ATT Android phones released in 2011 will get Gingerbread. The carrier-led synchronization of Android versions across Android smartphones is long overdue and incomplete, since the announcement only targets 2011 devices, but as the first major carrier to commit to upgrading its handsets it does signal a welcome commitment to fixing fragmentation issues that have long plagued the Android OS.

Samsung Estimated To Have Topped Apple Smartphone Sales In 2Q (Bloomberg)
Samsung, the world’s second-largest handset maker, may have surpassed Nokia and Apple in smartphone sales in the second quarter, driven by the popularity of Android-based models, according to Strategy Analytics. While no exact numbers are known yet until Samsung reports earnings on Friday, such an achievement would be a victory for Samsung and Google.

Streaming Video Market Will Come Into Its Own (ReadWriteWeb)
When it comes to premium content, HBO has long been the preferred destination for the big movie studios to make money on their “long tail” of content. The long tail is now shifting to Netflix. Netflix and DreamWorks Animation are reportedly in negotiations to bring DreamWorks movies to the video streaming service. Even though that is a blip on everyone’s radar, it illustrates that somewhere near 2013 is when the premium streaming market comes into its own. Which, if Google ever gets Google TV off the ground and can figure out YouTube, stands to win share.

Chrome Continues To Expand Rapidly At The Expense Of Most (ZDNet)
Chrome is a force to be reckoned with; 6% more people are using it now than they were last year. Safari is the only other major web browser to see some growth, while Opera, Firefox, and Internet Explorer are seeing some chunks of their user bases swallowed up. Safari now accounts for 7.48% of all web traffic, largely in part due to iOS. Chrome is at 13.11%, Firefox is at 21.7%, and Explorer is at 53.7%, just over half.

Baidu Continues To Dominate In China (Reuters)
Extending its lead from Google, Baidu reported a 95% increase in net income, beating Wall Street expectations and sending the company’s shares up 7% in after-hours trading. The company said strong traffic growth and increased ad spending powered the blockbuster results.

The iPad Wins The Enterprise (Good Technology)
Despite Android’s strong overall growth, enterprises appear to continue to be wary of the mobile operating system, according Good Technology. Overall, iPad activations made up 27.2% of all new devices during the second quarter. Android tablets made up just 3.1% of overall tablet activations, a decline compared to the first quarter.

Google Polices Its New Social Service; Some Users Get The Boot (SlashGear)
Google’s stance on users listing their real names on Google+ continues to cause headaches on the fledgling social networking site, with a spate of account deactivations as users with non-typical names or pseudonyms found their profiles locked. Google VP Vic Gundotra admits that some of the first filtering decisions have been incorrect, and promises that as well as improving on that, Google will also make communications with those affected more comprehensive. Reading between the lines, Gundotra wants Google+ to be approachable. In the meantime, high-profile victims of Google+ policies continue to stack up.

Google Buys Face Recognition Startup (TechCrunch)
Google has gobbled up another startup that could align nicely with its new social network. PittPatt began as a Carnegie Mellon University project, and it can spot people in photos and videos with facial recognition and tracking technology. With a strict privacy policy in place, Google could use PittPatt’s technology to enhance YouTube, Google+, Images and even mobile experiences.

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