Coffee

“Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks and Krispy Kreme all sell pastries and caffeinated beverages, so they’re obvious competitors. But beneath that similarity, they’re serving different markets. Krispy Kreme’s customers visit only occasionally but buy dozens of donuts; that chain is peddling a dietary splurge, not daily sustenance… Starbucks chief Howard Schultz has always seen his stores as neighborhood hangouts, a sort of nonalcoholic ‘Cheers’ setting with comfy chairs, porcelain cups and, increasingly, wireless Internet access. Dunkin’ Donuts, in contrast, is increasingly built on speed. Most of its new stores feature drive-throughs, and the chain bills itself as a pit stop for harried commuters.” Daniel McGinn, Newsweek

Center of the Universe

“Teenagers have become so much the focus of everybody else. In a certain sense - at least as far as marketers and parents and maybe law enforcement are concerned - teenagers are the centre of the universe. But it’s not the kind of attention any human being needs. It’s attention trained on how to market to them, predict their behaviour, and, at worst, turn them into compliant mindless consumers. The strange part is that all this marketing seems to work better on the adults than the kids.” Douglas Rushkoff, producer for the award-wining Frontline documentary, The Merchants Of Cool

Minty fresh

“Forget toothpaste. Now it’s time to put some flavor in your life with Breath Palette. At $161 for a kit of all 31 flavors, who could resist? Looks like an all-natural idea for packaging toothpaste and then selling it for hundreds of times more than was spent to manufacture it… When you face brushing your teeth with flavors such as a Monkey Banana, Sweet Salt, and Darjeeling Tea, you may want to just skip the brushing and have a snack instead.” Gizmodo

Toothpaste

Prosperity theology

“What remains is a materialism framed in a kind of Tony Robbins positivism… Jesus is front and center but not his Crucifixion, Resurrection or Atonement. There are chapters on overcoming trauma and a late chapter on emulating God’s generosity… But there are many more illustrations of how the Prosperity doctrine has produced personal gain, most memorably, perhaps, for the Osteen family: how Victoria’s ‘speaking words of faith and victory’ eventually brought the couple their dream house; how Joel discerned God’s favor in being bumped from economy to business class.” TIME.com, on megapastor and best-selling author Joel Osteen’s ‘Best Life Now’

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Fame

“I had a guy come up to me, in my face, saying, ‘You think you’re so cool? You’re not cool’ and I’m saying to him, ‘Dude, it’s a commercial.’ ” Justin Long, on playing the slacker-hip Apple Mac guy to John Hodgman’s nerdy PC guy

Get a Mac

Soy frustrating

“It may no rank up there with milk, eggs and peanuts, but in terms of being a problem, it’s unsurpassed… Soy is used as filler in meats and sauces, commercially baked products, chewing gum, snack foods, milk substitutes and even cosmetics… One other problem is labelling. It’s one thing to read in a label that a product has soy, but another to try to decipher such ingredients as edamame, miso, mono-diglyceride or vegetable proteins.” Toronto Star’s Peter Krivel, on the problems associated with soy allergy

War of the words

“We find that pretty arrogant. They don’t decide. We don’t decide. Gamers decide.” Xbox Canada’s Jason Anderson, on Sony’s E3 proclamation of “Sony decides when the next generation begins”

I remember

“Remember those asshole claw machines that would constantly rob you of 50 cents? My grandmother’s arthritis ridden hands have a tighter grip than these damn machines.” Travis Hudson, Gizmodo

Endings

“No matter what you think of David Fincher’s translation of Chuck Palahniuk’s pre-iPod, post-post-punk nightmare, you have to admire an ending that foresaw things that are still being talked about today. The film predicts the emo-boy nation that we swim in these days, but the ending, with the Pixies’ raucous ‘Where is My Mind?’ wailing in the background, sees self-terrorism and numb romance as the new, essential way of life.” Chris Cabin, on 1999’s Fight Club

Thinking differently

“Earlier this week, Chicago Tribune quoted Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris as saying iPods have a relatively low failure rate and that they are designed to last ‘four years.’ However, Kerris in a statement to the iLounge on Friday said she was misquoted. The Apple spokeswoman said she told the reporter that the iPod was designed to last ‘for years,’ not ‘four years.’” AppleInsider