Archives for February 2013

The Importance Of Quality Care Between Ages 0-5 #QualityECE

 

Did you know that the first 5 years of your child’s life may determine the level of success they will reach as adults? To help parents who need to find someone to watch after their child during these early development years, First 5 LA has launched  a website for parents, www.ReadySetGrowLA.org.  The website informs parents about the life-long benefits of quality early care, provides educational resources and  shares tips to help them make informed decisions.

Finding quality daycare is one of the toughest decisions we will need to make as a parent.   When my child was an infant I needed resources to guide me in finding a caregiver and determining whether day care, home care or care from a family member was in the best interest of my child. I also needed resources to make informed decisions about selecting a childcare provider.   I’m so glad that a resource like Ready. Set. Grow! exists today because I know that parents will have a trusted place to go when making decisions about their child’s first five years.

My favorite Ready Set Grow LA resource is the 5 Steps Of Choosing Quality Day Care which provides the five key steps to making a decision on day care:

  1. Ready. Set. Grow! LA provides a resources to help you asses your needs, child care options.  The site also includes resources Child Care Referral.
  2. Ready. Set. Grow! LA provides tips to check credentials and references for caregivers.
  3. Ready. Set. Grow! LA recommends you get to know the child care provider and schedule a site visit. Also provides detailed tips on what to look for.
  4. Ready. Set. Grow! LA suggests you make a commitment by selecting the best option for your child and family.
  5. Ready. Set. Grow! LA also provides additional parental resources and games/activities to continue the learning process.  
Research shows that children that obtain quality day care have more advanced language skills, do better in school, have better social skills.  Ultimately, they will do better in high school, graduate and succeed academically.

For additional resources stay connected with Ready. Set. Grow via Facebook at  http://www.facebook.com/readysetgrowla,   You can also follow the conversation via Twitter by following  @ReadySetGrowLA  or  via  #QualityECE hashtag,
Question:  What is the most important thing you for when making decisions about childcare?
Disclosure:   This is part of a compensated campaign with Smith New Media and  ReadySetGrowLA.org.  However, all opinions expressed are my own

Join Us For Help A Mother Out Facebook Chat #HAMO

Did you know 22% of all children under five years old in the U.S. live in poverty and one out of every three families struggle to afford diapers.  These statistics are overwhelming! Access to diapers is a critical resource because it helps prevent the spread of infectious diseases.   Healthy kids don’t have painful diaper rash, fever, loss of appetite or vomiting, herpes, staphylococci, urinary tract infections, jaundice or renal failure. Clean diapers make the whole family smile.

On Wednesday, March 6 at 11am several influential women will be joining forces for a Help A Mother Out, KarmaWell Facebook Chat.  We’ll be discussing parenthood and shopping (and charity too!)  It will be fun and good for your soul.

 

Help A Mother Out is a charity that is near and dear to my heart because they do so may positive things to help families in need.   Help a Mother Out (HAMO for short) was formed with $100 in the spring of 2009 in reaction to media reports about the economic crisis’s effect on young children, families, and mothers, in particular the growing numbers of homeless children and families in California. Reaching out to San Francisco Bay Area shelters, co-founders Lisa Truong and Rachel Fudge learned that the number-one need was not baby blankets, clothing, or even food but diapers—which are not covered under social-safety net programs like WIC or food stamps. So they decided to organize a Mother’s Day diapers-and-wipes donation drive to benefit a dozen agencies serving low-income and homeless families throughout California.  Today they collect and donate hundreds  of thousands of diapers to families in need.  1,042,452 diapers since May, 2009!

 

Facebook Chat Details

What: KarmaWell joins HAMO to chat about shopping, motherhood, charity donations, and the Karma Well app

When: Wednesday, March 6, 11:00 AM ­ 12:00 PM Pacific Time

Where: HAMO’s Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/helpamotherout

RSVP HERE:  Help A Mother Out Facebook Chat

Why: Because We Need Your Help. You can change lives.  Invest in women and children.

Who to follow: 

Kate Wilkinson ­ Founder RetroModernMom.com
Ana L. Flores – Co­Founder SpanglishBaby.com / Founder Latina Bloggers Connect, Inc
Yvonne Condes – Editor and co­Founder of MomsLA.com
Eva Smith ­ – Editor Tech Food Life Blog / Entrepreneur
Heather Flett and Whitney Moss ­ Rookie Moms
Kim Tracy Prince ­ HAMO Los Angeles Chapter Manager
Lisa Truong ­ HAMO co­founder

More About KarmaWell:

KarmaWell has partnered with HAMO to do this Facebook chat. Karma Well is an app you install on your desktop browser that will make it so that any time you make a purchase on a website, a percentage of your purchase is automatically donated to the charity of your choice.

Ten Tips To Increase Reach and Engagement On Facebook Without Paying

Have you noticed the reach and engagement on your Facebook page decrease?   Over the past couple weeks I’ve noticed that the reach of each of my posts has decreased tremendously.  I suspect this is due to the fact that Facebook wants to encourage people to use promoted posts.  I personally don’t believe I should have to pay to reach out to the communities  I administer. I also don’t utilize the promoted post features.  Inorder to maintain active readers you need to engage with your facebook fans and win them beyond the “like”.

Here are 10 tips to help you increase your reach and engagement on Facebook without paying:

1. Did you know Facebook rolled out a feature in November 2012 that allow users to subscribe to notifications whenever their favorite Pages write a new post. This feature is similar to “Close Friends” Facebook Friends Feature.

 

 

To increase reach & engagement to your page encourage your readers to subscribe to your FB page for notifications and to ensure your Facebook page is in their newsfeed.  Your loyal fans will jump right in. However, if you suggest this feature make sure to minimize the number of times you post to 1-2 times a day and no more than 7 times a week.   I tested this feature on some of my favorite pages and sadly had to unsubscribe on a couple pages who posted 3-5+ times daily.

Here is a close-up of the photo above:

 

2. Timing.  Space out your posts to 1-2 times per day.  Also, consider scheduling some posts between 8pm-7am when more users are online in the evening or weekends as well.  I typically will kick start the day with one post in the morning and another post around lunchtime.  If there is a lot of engagement I will add another post at the end of the day.

3. Give Fans access to exclusive content that you would normally not offer on your blog.  For example, offer a coupon, trial samples, sneak previews, sales, breaking news in the topics you write about, exclusive giveaways & discount codes.  Countdown the number of days until the next big event (ie Movies, Play, etc…). 

4. Respond/engage with your readers when they ask questions.  Check your message box and setup notifications to ensure you receive updates.

5. Photos Photos Photos. Share good quality photos of live events you attend.  Headed to a local event?  Consider sharing a photo at the event or a photo album after the event.  Follow the weekly memes and post your photos to Twtter for #ThrowbackThursday #MusicMonday #FoodFriday, #PictureOfTheDay, etc.. 

6. Simple Content is very important.  Keep your content simple to 80 words or less to ensure you get more likes, shares & comments.  Make sure not to make paragraphs of your posts. Social Media users attention span is getting shorter and shorter.  You need to capture the attention of your fans within the first 3 seconds or the user will go on to the next page.

7. Ask fans to interact with your posts by asking them to like, comment and/or share your posts.  Studies have shown that fans are 3xs more likely to like, comment or share a post when asked to do so.  (Instead of sharing ‘here is my photo I took in Hawaii consider “Like this photo if you love Hawaii”)

8. Use your page as a destination to discuss topics at major events of the day (ie The Oscars, Superbowl, Fashion tips, DIY tips) or for crowd source (ie impromptu Facebook chat).   Ask questions during the event to drive conversation.

9. Keep an eye on your insights.  After trying the above tips for a week, check your insights for time period when you have the best engagement and reach and adjust the timing of your posts accordingly.

10.  Keep it real.  Be personable. There is something special, quirky that sets us all apart.  Don’t be afraid to open up a little and share your quirks. You’ll find some of your fans have the same quirks in common. Be outrageous or dreamy but never be boring.

 

 


 

 

Question:  What other tips would you recommend to increase reach and engagement on Facebook without paying?

Tech Trends Thursday: What Would You Do If You Had Google Glass?

 

Google announced a Google Glass Contest.  The voice activated computerized glasses give users the ability to take photos, search the web and record what they see hands free.  The coolest feature about google glass is that you can also share what you see live via google hangouts. Google is providing the glasses to a handful of lucky users to try out. However, selected explorers will need to pre-order a Glass Explorer Edition for $1500 and attend a special pick-up experience, in person, in New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles.

I watched the video demo and was very intrigued.  The appearance of the Google Glasses is very star trek tech looking and may make the user feel a little awkward while trotting around the world recording hands-free.  The second prototype looks cooler.  I hope they will be able to make the glasses look a little more hip and provide options to purchase computerized designer glasses, sun glasses or reading glasses with the computer integrated into the frame.  The glasses will also compliment all the existing technology gadgets available such as smartphones and tables.

Google has a fun contest to enter to get your own pair of Google Glasses. Using Google+ or Twitter, tell google what you would do if you had Glass, starting with the hashtag #ifihadglass. The deadline for applications is February 27th. If you are chosen, google will send an invitation to become a Glass Explorer.

 

If I had Google Glass I would travel the world by car, train, bus & on foot to meet the beautiful people of the world and share my experience live via google hangout. I’m sure we will discover that as a world we have more things in common with the people of the world than differences.

Question:  What would you do if you had Google Glass? Please make sure to also share on Twitter or Google+ using the #ifihadglass hashtag

Colgate Optic Whitening Regimen Review | Revisión de Colgate Optica Pasta de Dientes

I had the opportunity to review the Colgate Optic Whitening Regimen for the past 30 days.  The Toothpaste is offered in two great minty flavors- Original Sparkling Mint and Cool Mild Mint.  I had the opportunity to test the Sparkling Mint flavor.  About one week into the progam I saw immediate results.  My husband noticed the results and requested some products as well. I ended up buying a complete set of products for my husband as well to test.

After four weeks of using the products my teeth are whiter and brighter. One of the things I love about the products is that it is a complete system that can be used over the counter with excellent results. In addition to providing whitening results, Colgate Optic White Toothpaste fights cavities, freshens breath and helps reduce plaque with regular brushing.

I’m very glad I was able to test the product and recommend it to anyone that needs to put a little sparkle on their teeth.  Just make sure to purchase two sets, one for you and one to share.  In case your significant other wants to borrow it.

 

En Espanol

Tuve la oportunidad de revisar el Colgate Optica pasta de dientes durante los últimos 30 días. La pasta de dientes se ofrece en dos sabores a menta . Tuve la oportunidad de probar el sabor de menta. Alrededor de una semana en el progama vi resultados inmediatos. Mi marido se dio cuenta de los resultados y pidió algunos productos también.

Después de cuatro semanas de uso de los productos de los dientes son más blancos y brillantes. Una de las cosas que me gustan de los productos es que es un sistema completo que se puede utilizar con excelentes resultados. Además de proporcionar resultados de blanqueamiento, la pasta de dientes Colgate óptica combate las caries, refresca el aliento y ayuda a reducir la placa con un cepillado regular.

Estoy muy contenta de haber podido probar el producto y lo recomiendo a cualquier persona que tiene que poner un poco de brillo en los dientes. Sólo asegúrese de comprar dos juegos, uno para ti y otro para compartir. En caso de que su pareja quiere pedir prestado.

 

Disclosure:  This is not a sponsored post.  I received sample products for review.  All opinions are my own.

Prabal Gurung For Target

 

The Prabal Gurang for Target launched on February 10.  The collection of 92 vibrant colors is available online and at Target stores from now until March 23, 2013.   However, if you haven’t been there you better run to your closest store or go shop online as some of the pieces are SOLD OUT online and local stores.

I like the Target collaborations because they are fun and bring fashion that would normally be unaffordable to all fashionistas with budgets in mind.  I personally would not spend $2700 on a dress that I would only wear one time.  However, I’m willing if the style is right I’m willing to spend  $500 to buy selected pieces from a designer collaboration. My recommendation when you are considering purchasing garments from Target collaborations is to look at the original designer’s website and try to match pieces that look similar in style and cut to what the designers make.   I’m looking forward to the next collaboration!

Here are the items I purchased for my daughter who wore her outfit on Valentine’s Day week.

 

Prabal Gurung For Target Short-Sleeve Dress in First Date Print

 

Women’s Prabal Gurung for Target Lace-up Pump – Black

 

Prabal Gurung for Target Wedge Sandal with Ankle Strap – Black

 

 

 Question:  What are your thoughts on the Target Collaborations?  Did you purchase any items from the Prabal Gurung For Target Collaboration?  

 

 

 

 

Mexican Shrimp Cocktail Recipe | Coctel de Camaron Receta

Shrimp Cocktails bring back memories of  my life in Mexico.  The aroma of the cilantro, avocados and chili sauce provide a perfect combination to think of home.  Today I serve Shrimp Cocktail as an appetizer, lunch or a quick refreshing main dish on a busy night.  It is one of my families favorite traditional foods.

 

Ingredients:


1 (48 ounce) can tomato and clam juice (spicy if desired)
2 avocados, chopped
2 cucumbers, seeded and chopped
1 medium red onion, chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 tomatos, chopped
1 lb large shrimp, peeled, de-veined and steamed
1/4 cup ketchup
2 limes, quartered
4 dashes Tabasco sauce
dash horseradish to taste

Directions:

Place the shrimp in a large bowl. Stir cucumbers, onion, cilantro and tomato. Mix in tomato and clam juice cocktail, ketchup, limes, tabasco sauce, and horseradish. Season with salt. Gently stir in avocado. Cover, and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours.

Serve in one large bowl or into individual tall parfait glasses, similar to the way Traditional Shrimp Cocktail is served in Mexico. Top with chopped cilantro, chopped onion and avocado.  Serve with Tortilla Chips.

 

Buen Provecho!

The Best Cupcakes Ever & Mini Red Velvet Cupcake Recipe

I’ll never forget the first time I tasted a Red Velvet Cupcake.  I was on business travel to New York City for the week.  My flight home was scheduled for Friday at 5pm to enjoy a day of shopping for clothing, more pizza and desserts.  I visited a small shop that made the most delicious cupcakes and miniature cakes.  I purchased 2 miniature red velvet cupcakes.   It was an afternoon of pure joy and deliciousness.  Just some time for me to spend by myself celebrating all that New York City had to offer. These were the best Red velvet cupcakes I ever had.

Every time I make Red Velvet cupcakes I think about the wonderful time I spent in New York City.

 

 

Red Velvet Cupcakes Recipe

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 pound cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
Sprinkles for garnish

 

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (24-cup) muffin pans with mini-cupcake papers.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.

Garnish your cupcakes with sprinkles. Serve with tea or just to celebrate YOU.

Buen Provecho!

 

The State Of The Union – Ten Best Tweets & Transcripts #SOTU

State Of The Union – Best Tweets & Transcripts #SOTU

Storified by Eva Smith™· Wed, Feb 13 2013 03:05:43

President Obama’s getting ready: RT if you’re excited to hear his #SOTU speech tonight. http://t.co/CF6dRHg9Barack Obama
Miss the State of the Union? Get the full text of Obama’s speech here | http://ti.me/11FcDnG #SOTUTIME.com
A transcript of Rubio’s remarks http://wapo.st/X0R2R4 #SOTUThe Washington Post
Want a better way to watch the State of the Union? Watch live w/ charts, graphs & data at http://wh.gov/sotu #SOTU http://pic.twitter.com/O1YPyEQcThe White House
RT @whitehouse: Did you watch the enhanced #SOTU at http://wh.gov/sotu? Check out all of the graphics on @slideshare: http://www.slideshare.net/whitehouse/white-house-state-of-the-union-2013-enhanced-graphicsHeli Nissinen
RT @USATODAY: President Obama’s State of the Union speech word cloud, showing the words he used the most #SOTU http://pic.twitter.com/MT3lrhy9LostAmericanDream
I couldn’t resist. Took the #SOTU transcript and created a wordle. #JOBS wins with the most mentions. http://pic.twitter.com/5729ACm4Angela Kim
Made another wordle with transcript from Sen. Marco Rubio’s GOP response to #SOTU. #GOVERNMENT has most mentions. http://pic.twitter.com/nvz5KQbCAngela Kim
My favorite part of #SOTU RT @HuffPostPol: Desiline Victor, 102-year-old voter http://pic.twitter.com/e3GqoixY”Matt Roznowski
RT @twittercomms: #SOTU: 1.36 million tweets; peaks re: middle class/minimum wage, gun control, education. http://blog.twitter.com/2013/02/2013-state-of-union.html http://pic.twitter.com/x4MY5jJlMarianne

Tech Tuesday: Bill Gates Reddit Ask Me Anything Q&A Full Transcript

 

If you could pick the brain of five famous people who would they be?  On my list are Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Oprah, Michelle Obama to name a few.  Yesterday, Bill Gates, Microsoft cofounder and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation  answered questions on Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything).  The questions and answers were based on Bill & Melinda Gate’s philanthropy, charitable organization and Bill’s bucket list.  Bill Gates also revealed several technology insights which made for.   Bill Gates full time job and priority is his work with the foundation.  However, based on his AMA answers it is evident that Microsoft and Technology is still a very important part of Bill Gates life.  

The conversation rendered over 10,000 comments.  After the Reddit AMA Q&A, Bill Gates Tweeted:

 

Bill Gates Reddit Q&A  Full Transcript:

What is something that needs to be changed in the world, but money wont help?

It would be nice if all governments were as rational as the Nordic governments – reaching compromise and providing services broadly. The Economist had a nice special section on this last week. Africa governments have often been weak but you can’t write a check to change that. Fortunately the average quality is going up. Mo Ibrahim tracks this in a great way. (http://www.moibrahimfoundation.org/IIAG/)

What emerging technology today do you think will cause another big stir for the average consumer in the same way that the home computer did years ago?

Robots, pervasive screens, speech interaction will all change the way we look at “computers”. Once seeing, hearing, and reading (including handwriting) work very well you will interact in new ways..

What is the greatest achievement of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in your opinion and how do you choose which causes to support?

So far our biggest impact has been getting vaccines for things like diarrhea and pneumonia out which has saved millions of lives. Polio will be a great achievement along with key partners when that gets done.

How did you feel about your portrayal in Pirates of Silicon Valley, and who do you want to play you next in a movie?

That portrayal was reasonably accurate….

What do you do for fun? I find it hard to fathom how someone like you can just disconnect. Disconnect from the emails, calls ,the media. All of it. What would be your definition of a chill and fun day? 

I love playing tennis. I am an avid bridge player (a card game if you have not heard of it – it was more popular in the past!). I like to tour interesting things with my kids like power plants, garbage dumps, the Large Hadron Collider, Antarctica, missile Silos (Arizona),… I read a lot and watch courses (online or the Learning Company)..

Which world-wide health cause are we perfectly capable of easily solving and on the cusp of achieving but just need to put it over the top with a little more attention or resources to actually solve?

Polio is the first thing to get done since we are close. Within 6 years we will have the last case. After that we will go after malaria and measles. Malaria kills over 500,000 kids every year mostly in Africa and did not get enough attention until the last decade. We also need vaccines to prevent HIV and TB which are making progress…

Anything left on your bucket list?

Don’t die…

What is your view on the world’s reliance on crude oil, and will you be investing into researching other sources of energy?

I did a TED talk about the climate crisis. Over time we have to dramatically reduce CO2 emissions so using fossil fuels will require us to do carbon capture and sequestration. There has been far too little work on this. (http://www.thegatesnotes.com/Topics/Energy/Talking-About-Energy-Miracles-at-TED)

How do you measure the success of the foundation? How does the foundation differ from other large philanthropic organizations?

Our goals are focused on helping the poorest (globally) and improving education (in the US). We spend half of our money on global health. One metric to look at is reducing the number of children (under 5) who die. My annual letter talks about the amazing progress that has been made on this. Amazingly as health improves families choose to have less kids so paradoxically population growth goes DOWN as you improve health helping with almost every issue – from stability to the environment..

The Rosling video I posted on Sunday talks about this:http://www.reddit.com/r/videos/comments/189bwr/most_people_still_think_of_the_world_as_being/

 

The anti-vaccine movement does not only exist in developing countries, such as Pakistan, but is quite popular here in the United States as well. As a result, the number of flu and whooping cough cases are bigger than ever. Are you planning on working domestically as well? Which countries do you think serve as models for their initiatives towards an overall healthier society? ie. who’s doing the best?

Vaccines are very important in all countries. Some of the bad rumors have lead to kids dying of measles and pertussis. We have backed some information campaigns on the importance of vaccination even in the US.  The Nordic countries do a good job on health like they do on many things…

Since becoming wealthy, what’s the cheapest thing that gives you the most pleasure?

Kids. Cheap cheeseburgers. Open Course Ware courses…

What are your thoughts on the patent war between the major players in the tech industry? Where do you stand on patent system reform.

In 1991, Bill wrote this about software patents:

If people had understood how patents would be granted when most of today’s ideas were invented, and had taken out patents, the industry would be at a complete standstill today.

I feel certain that some large company will patent some obvious thing related to interface, object orientation, algorithm, application extension or other crucial technique. If we assume this company has no need of any of our patents then they have a 17-year right to take as much of our profits as they want.

The solution to this is patent exchanges with large companies and patenting as much as we can. Amazingly we haven’t done any patent exchanges that I am aware of. Amazingly we haven’t found a way to use our licensing position to avoid having our own customers cause patent problems for us. I know these aren’t simply problems but they deserve more effort by both Legal and other groups. For example we need to do a patent exchange with HP as part of our new relationship. In many application categories straightforward thinking ahead allows you to come up with patentable ideas.

A recent paper from the League for Programming Freedom (available from the Legal department) explains some problems with the way patents are applied to software.

What’s your worst fear for the future of the world? (edit: I terms of policy/politics/etc — e.g. SOPA/ITU)

Hopefully we won’t have terrorists using nuclear weapons or biological weapons. We should make sure that stays hard.  I am disappointed more isn’t being done to reduce carbon emissions. Governments need to spend more on basic energy R&D to make sure we get cheap non-CO2 emitting sources as soon as possible.  Overall I am pretty optimistic. Things are a lot better than they were 200 years ago..

Windows 7 or Windows 8?

Higher is better.

What type of computer are you using right now?

I just got my Surface Pro a week ago and it is very nice.  I am using a Perceptive Pixel display right now – huge Windows 8 touch whiteboard. These will come down in price over time and be pervasive… (http://i.imgur.com/1JqrLVc.jpg)

Is Weezer still your favorite band?

Weezer…. Actually U2 is a favorite.. I keep waiting for Spinal Tap to go back on tour…

Do you still code ?, if so which language ?

Not as much as I would like to. I write some C, C# and some Basic. I am surprised new languages have not made more progress in simplifying programming. It would be great if most high school kids were exposed to programming…

What one Microsoft program or product that was never fully developed or released do you wish had made it to market?

We had a rich database as the client/cloud store that was part of a Windows release that was before its time. This is an idea that will remerge since your cloud store will be rich with schema rather than just a bunch of files and the client will be a partial replica of it with rich schema understanding.

What are your thoughts on the push against the open and free Internet that we have been seeing in the recent past and present (such as sopa, etc)?

There are two things this could reference. One is the free/pay for software mix. The Internet has benefited from having lots of free stuff and lots of commercial software. It has been interesting see people inventing hybrid models. Even stuff that is pretty commercial often has free versions for some audiences. Even the most open stuff often have services people choose to pay for. The second thing is the anonymous versus identified tension. This is another one where both will probably thrive since you want anonymity for some things and full identity for others. I am surprised how little progress has been made in the identity space but it will improve.

What do people give you for your birthday, given that you can buy anything you want?

Free software. Just kidding. Books actually.

What one Microsoft program or product that was never fully developed or released do you wish had made it to market?

We had a rich database as the client/cloud store that was part of a Windows release that was before its time. This is an idea that will remerge since your cloud store will be rich with schema rather than just a bunch of files and the client will be a partial replica of it with rich schema understanding.

Was it called WinFS? I always wanted to see what happened to that.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WinFS

Correct!

How have other extremely wealthy people reacted to your excessively generous philanthropy?

I have enjoyed meeting other philanthropists and talking about what they work on. I think there is a movement to do more, start sooner and be smarter about giving. Philanthropy is mostly about a broad set of people giving but it helps if the most wealthy set a strong example…

What’s your favorite book?

My favorite of the last decade in Pinker’s Better Angels of our Nature. It is long but profound look at the reduction in violence and discrimination over time. I review a lot of the books I read at gatesnotes.com (is that too self-promotional? http://b-gat.es/12GKLyN)

I am just wondering what your thoughts are on Windows 8. Do you think in general it has failed? I am not saying it has, but there are people saying it is not good, and I wanted to hear your thoughts on it.

It is a huge advance for Windows which people will see even more as the great applications and hardware come out..

I’m not Bill Gates, but he has made a huge positive influence. Many wealthy people I know point to Bill Gates as their idol. Not for his Microsoft days, but for his philanthropy. He also simultaneously killed many of my friend’s hundred million dollar trust funds after their parents discovered that Bill was only leaving $10 million for his children.

I definitely think leaving kids massive amounts of money is not a favor to them. Warren Buffett was part of an article in Fortune talking about this in 1986 before I met him and it made me think about it and decide he was right. Some people disagree with this but Melinda and I feel good about it.

 You can read the entire thread on Reddit as well.

 

Question:  If you could pick the brain of five famous people who would they be?  What question would you like to ask Bill Gates?

 

 

 

 

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