"Smarter, smaller, simpler: What’s ahead for robots in packaging?"

John R. Henry, a reader of this blog, has written an interesting essay on how robots are getting cheaper and better in packaging applications. This bit seems worth remembering:

Tools don’t take people’s jobs, they make them easier and more productive. Think of a carpenter with a handsaw versus a carpenter with power saw.

Kind of related: a brief--3 minute--video on the making of Skittles, the "#1 non-chocolate candy in the U.S."

"Will MySpace ever lose its monopoly?"

Guardian article dated 2/2/07. Love these bits:

But on present showing that won't stop its continuing expansion which, as the MySpace generation goes into employment, could eventually extend Murdoch's influence in ways that would make his grip on satellite television seem parochial. . . .

John Barrett of TechNewsWorld claims that MySpace is well on the way to becoming what economists call a "natural monopoly".

Oops. Double oops. Triple oops if you count that Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are not mentioned.

I really should start a Bad Prediction Hall of Fame.

Link via Kottke.

"Everything I know about life I learned behind the deli counter"

A sweet tribute to a college job working at Al's Deli in Evanston.

. . . Al’s Deli would become the best, most formative job I ever had. It was a place that taught me about food, wine, love, and became a reassuring constant when my family was splintering apart. It even led me down a path of food and beer writing. And it revealed to me one of life’s simplest truths: A well-made sandwich is the quickest path we mortals have to experiencing the divine.