I was trying to understand why most people who are incredibly intelligent never amount to much and I came up with this conclusion. Intelligence is like a sense. It’s the ability to reason, to organize ideas according to principles. But just as being able to see, does not guarantee that you will actually discover something new, or good vision does not necessarily lead to significant observations, having tremendous intelligence does not necessarily mean that you will come up with some groundbreaking work.

When I think of the most intelligent people I knew in college, they all did well, but few did any kind of truly innovative work. That work, came from other types. From unexpected candidates. From odd thinkers.

What moves civilization forward is in a way, similar to what moves our genes forward, something akin to evolution. What we need is not just intelligence, it’s mutant intelligence, mutant thinking, mutant thoughts. We need to combine the ability to reason with the ability to “morph” a thought into a whole new proposal. And then this new idea has to withstand scientific enquiry, colonize thinking and prevail, like a new species. And as it happens with mutations, most of these new thoughts will be useless, foolish and lead to knowledge oblivion. But some of this mutant thoughts will cross the fine line between folly and brilliancy and make us all more knowledgeable and better off.

Nokia & Microsoft via BI

Nokia & Microsoft via BI

Nokia is either dead, or saved by the strategy explained in this article. I give 80% that it’s dead, but 20% is still a chance. And if Windows Phone does take off it will be the miracle that Nokia needs. Problem is that WP should it be a success, it is also available for HTC and Samsung. Indeed it is HTC not Nokia who is the number one biggest seller of Windows Phone now. But Windows Phone sells 15K units a day worldwide and falling and Android 550K and growing fast. Nokia surprisingly still sells close to a million phones a day, most are cheap phones but still the largest maker by units. But HTC and Samsung have destroyed Nokia’s market in smartphones by adopting and thriving with Android and effectively together with iOS killing Symbian. So betting on WP is betting on a platform that as it stands nobody wants and if by thanks to Nokia it succeeds then Samsung, HTC and others will have it as well.

Not only it is hard to understand why Nokia went with Windows Phone but also why it went exclusively with Windows Phone instead of having Android as well.

Nokia married Microsoft but Microsoft gets to sleep around.

Last week I tweeted that I knew the current President of Spain, Zapatero and I knew the head of the opposition Rajoy and that I thought they were both unable to lead Spain away from moral, business and financial default. That they are mediocre thinkers who speak no English and are not really aware of what works and doesn’t work outside of Spain. In my view anyone who gets news about the world economy in Spanish is getting poor coverage, news in translation are biased, especially in Spain where there is a very bad understanding of the English speaking world. While most people are unaware here, antiAmericanism in Spain is rampant.
A good example is that in Spain everyone talks about the 20% of the people who don’t have medical insurance in USA in horror (and it is horrible) but not about the over 50% of Spaniards who are prisoners of their mortgages since in Spain, as opposed to USA, mortgages have unlimited liability and if you have negative equity you are a slave of the bank for the rest of your life. In socialist Spain you cannot return your home to the bank and walk away free as in capitalist USA. Moreover in USA 20% of people don’t have medical insurance but here over 20% of the whole population and 30% of those under 30 don’t have a job. And the others who do, earn salaries that are pitiful compared to the cost of living (mileurismo). The amount of years people have to work to buy a home here is much greater than that in USA or Germany.

So in my opinion a candidate that really understands the US economy and Northern European economies and who even understands Asian economies and can make deals with top CEOs of foreign companies to invest in Spain is crucial for our future. We also need a president who understands wealth creation, who understands the Silicon Valley quality job machine and how some parts of Spain have actually similar economies. We need a president who understands that social justice can only come after significant wealth creation.

So I am pleased to share that we now have a meeting scheduled with Rubalcaba. It will take place on August 17th at 17 hours. Easy to remember 🙂

Now the key question for Rubalcaba will be how can he be so different to the President he served for: Zapatero. He was in the same government and in charge of the same policies that saw unemployment shoot up from 8% to 20%. Rubalcaba as a candidate is as if Obama resigned because of a huge economic and financial crisis and Biden campaigned against a Republican having been the VP of the government that bankrupted USA. Still I think that before I speak about Rubalcaba I meet with him and then report about the meeting. And that’s what I will do. Maybe Rubalcaba did not have room for action, maybe he does have different ideas. In general I dislike to speak about people I don’t know. So let’s see what he thinks.

Lastly I would like to say that as opposed to my native Argentina, where ruling families like the Menems or the Kirchners, or governors like Scioli make hundreds of millions of dollars in a shameful cleptocracy this is not the case in Spain. It is not that in Spain Zapatero has been a corrupt president. Compared to say Berlusconi, Zapatero is a model of ethics and morals. The problem of Spain is not as many here think, corruption which is very small by the standards of other Latin nations. The problem is lack of imagination, creativity and overall awareness that Spain is part of a globalized economy and can only be saved by learning what works and doesn’t work in globalized economies. With a GDP of $1.5 trillion Spain still matters. And I sincerely hope my adopted nation gets out of the economic crisis it is in to thrive once more in the global economy.

Mia Varsavsky was born this morning. As you can see we are all well. This picture was taken only 2 hours after birth. Nina was amazing, brave, confident, and very happy. Mia struggled through the whole thing. We promised her that life gets better later on. Birth took place at Ruber Internacional in Madrid. Dr Luis Recasens, an amazing obstetrician did the C Section. I had the easy part of course 🙂

Most people who are concerned about the health effects of food are concerned about the quality of the food they eat. But in the vast majority of cases where food sickens or kills people, it is not the quality of the food they eat but the quantity. Why are all diets about eating something different of what people normally eat? Why isn’t there a simple diet that says, eat whatever you normally eat but less. And not much less, not starving less, but just a little less, so you may get into a new eating habit for the rest of your life and not just during the diet. So you change nothing but eat a slightly smaller amount. That is my diet. My weight is incredibly constant over the years, I just eat the same diet every day. And when I don’t work out, I just eat the same but in smaller amounts.

It’s not what people eat that kills them, the global obesity epidemic and its toll on life is happening because of how much people eat.

Ok, I am obsessed with Smartphones and connectivity, but probably so are you.

My announced day without Blackberry produced an undesirable outcome. I did not abandoned Blackberry but ended up trading back from the Torch(ure) to the BB 9700.  My BB9700 is a liberated T Mobile USA model so I can use it both in Europe and in USA (few phones work like that cause T Mobile has their own 3G flavor). But I still carry my iPhone 4 and HTC HD.

I could not drop the BB for one main reason, INPUT.  I can’t  type super fast on the iPhone no matter how hard I try.  And I have tried since 2008.  I envy people who say they can. I find the symbols in a second screen and the globe to change languages a real impediment. Android is better.  I can type faster on the HTC HD with Swiftkey (amazing app) but not as fast as in a BB with a vertical raised keyboard made for thumbs and a trackpad.  My daughters agree, they say typing on glass with long nails is too difficult.  The Blackberry Bold is my main communication, messaging, email and blogging machine. The Bold BB is my “lean forward” device.  The Android and iPhone are my “lean back” alternatives.  My spectator smartphones.  In the BB I create, in the Android or especially the iPhone, I enjoy what others have created. Many times I end up paying for it as well.  The Bold BB is crucial in my life because my wife, my 3 older kids all use Blackberries and I BBM with them. Many think Blackberries are for old people but at Columbia University, NYU and Spanish high schools, Blackberries are still very big.  Blackberry is also the only service that gives me global roaming via Movistar for only an extra 20 euros a month.  With the Android and iPhone if I don’t find Fon or other WiFi I am roaming toast.

So I continue to walk around with 3 smartphones. I know it’s crazy.

I use the iPhone and Android for different collections of apps because as we know, apps suck on the BB.

I use both because neither phone has enough juice to get me through the day so I use the Android and iPhone at different times. I think that people in California don’t have that problem because they live in their cars, so workers at Apple and Google never notice how much battery their software/cpu and other chips need.   They charge their smartphones stuck in traffic jams. In the rest of the world either smartphones will get better batteries or buses and subways will have plugs.

Now I don’t just use smartphones, I abuse them. I make use of all of them intensely. I mountain bike practically every day using sports apps like Endomondo, music apps like Spotify, I use RadioMe in Android, Twitter, Facebook, G+ on Android and iPhone (I want it in BB). I also use Seesmic to multipost. Dropbox to send files to myself and others.

I frequently give the iPhone to my 4 year old who abuses it even more.  He plays up to 20 different games, watches videos, pictures. If what people mean that iPhones are for young people is that they are for 4 year olds then I am with them.  Little kids find iPhones their device of choice.  Before language acquisition they are unbeatable.  I also sometimes play games such as Chopper, Angry Birds with him or alone and the iPhone is the king of gaming.

When I am in grown up mode,  I use Navionics when I sail (amazing app), I use photo apps like Instagram  (iPhone) or Picplz (Android).  I also turn my Android and iPhone into hotspots for my MacBook Air or iPad.  I use BBM a lot, PINs, Google Maps, Latitude, Whatsapp, Rebtel on BB (amazing integration to save money on international calls), Skype on iPhone and Android, Gmail everywhere of course, WordPress apps to blog in all three platforms but best in BB cause of input same with Tumblr. Sonos controller is available for Android and iPhone not BB.  I love AirPlay in my iPhone and through Airport Express I can play Spotify or iTunes on my stereo.  I use Fon apps to connect automatically to Fon WiFi on Android.  I also enjoy other music apps like Rdio, Grooveshark, for me music apps are like radio stations, none is good for everything.  And of course, I use cameras and video and for that the iPhone is the best. And then there is the issue of back ups. Because apps fail, like sports apps, I sometimes go cycling with two different smartphones collecting data, say Endomondo in the Android and Runkeeper in the iPhone, so I have back up. The ultimate back up tool?  Dropbox, works everywhere 🙂

Now what I almost never do, with any of these smartphones is to send a txt and I very rarely make a phone call.

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