Business

"The Streaming Problem: How Spammers, Superstars, and Tech Giants Gamed the Music Industry"

Interesting piece. But I'm an enthusiastic Spotify user and I have never encountered the issues mentioned. And I'd bet very few users have. Further, I'm not surprised: by training and experience I expect that after you design the rules for almost any interaction you can bet some folks will try to exploit those rules.


"Grocery Stores: An American Miracle"

Interview with Michael Ruhlman about his new book, Grocery: the Buying and Selling of Food. I absolutely agree that the modern American supermarket is a marvel, far too easily taken for granted.

The thing I see most now is just the extraordinary bounty of what’s in a grocery store. We tend to walk by so many different things without thinking of them, just grabbing what we typically grab, but now I see the bewildering variety of foods that are available to us not just occasionally but seven days a week, pretty much whenever we want them. It’s something of a miracle that we created a system like this where we have nutritious food available to us all the time, at a relatively low, reasonable cost. I didn’t expect to appreciate grocery stores as much as I do now.

Also see this: a recent survey indicates that supermarket chains rank first in "how well companies are perceived by their customers".