Poor Richard’s Guide to Technologies

A 5-minute guide to AI

In the land of business, artificial intelligence, or what the kids call AI, is seen as a “game-changer.”

But most many of us have no idea what we are talking about when we talk about AI. AI conjures up vague notions of algorithms, networks and weird movies from the 2000s. If this is you, read on to learn enough about AI to avoid that deer-in-the-headlights look at your next meeting.

Nonetheless, most people have experienced modern AI (and no, I don’t mean the Steven Speilberg movie). For instance, Chatbots are the most advanced and accessible commercial technology and are a staple of customer service.

“Turing machine in Bletchley Park” by DouglasHoyt is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The goal is to automate, improve or enhance work that is already being done…

New chapters

Who want to be better at their jobs, happier at work and enjoy their life more

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My goal is to create and share the kind of things that I would like to learn about — an entertaining blend of stories, struggles, lessons, and insights.

This is for aspiring marketing managers who want to be better at their jobs, happier at work and enjoy their life more. It covers the things you talk about with your work friends at the end of the day over a beer. …

Personal Essay

Reflections on post-pandemic loneliness in a new city

Photo by Erda Estremera on Unsplash

I’m so lonely. Right now, today, I am so so lonely. I feel so lost like I’m just drifting through life, stuck in the post-pandemic doldrums.

It occurred to me last week that my pandemic life and my post-pandemic life are very similar. I spend most of my time in this house — a row house in North West Philadelphia on a sunny street just a couple blocks from the Schuylkill River. I work for a company based in the Bay Area. I’ve never met my coworkers in person.

We moved to Philadelphia in October, and then the winter hit…

Startup Survival Guide

If you work at a startup you need to read this right now

“Can you join the meeting at 1:00 today?” It’s never a good sign when the CMO is dropping into a meeting at the last minute. Generally, I think of the C-levels as folks with whom I’d like to have pleasant — but brief — exchanges, and his unannounced presence at a meeting that until 5 minutes ago was irrelevant to my work was like a red flair indicating troubled waters ahead.

Photo by Christian Wiediger on Unsplash

I knew that the sales were not as hoped, so I anticipated changes coming down the line. I also knew that the projects I was working on were aligned…


I was lonely. But not as lonely as I would have imagined.

Photo by Sara Jeruss

When I saw that image ten months later, in December, I said, oh that was the last day that I was happy. We laughed, but it’s kind of true. That was the last day Bandolier National Monument was open before it closed thanks to COVID-19.

My next memory of our time in New Mexico is pushing a cart around an eerily empty Target store in Santa Fe. We bought beans, granola bars, trail mix, raisins in preparation for who knows what. …


Friends, it has been a year. A YEAR!

This time last year, I was planning a ROAD TRIP of all things, having recently returned from LONDON, which feels like a memory from the distant universe we now call “the before times.” Despite all the craziness, Sara and I did achieve some significant milestones in the last twelve months.

Photo by Magnet.me on Unsplash

I got a new job, we purchased our first home, we moved to a new city — hello Philadelphia — and we adopted a little Tuxedo cat named, Frenchie. Previously, the only thing I owned was a house plant named Baby. (Layers, yes, layers here.)

Baby, survived for two months…

Let’s Get Weird

Photo by Agto Nugroho on Unsplash. Some think the Mothman was an owl or a sandhill crane.

The Mothman emerges under the shadow of the social upheaval of the 1960s. For instance, the Warren Commission — investigating the assassination of President Kennedy — released its report in 1964. In 1967, America was officially embroiled in the Vietnam War for two years. in 1967, Charles Manson formed the Manson Family, and the Manson Family murders bookended the end of the sixties in 1969.

The Mothman event is also framed by the development of the atomic bomb and the Cold War. So, the reason citizens of Point Pleasant thought the Mothman could be part of a secret government experiment…

What Lyft teaches us about the failings of the economy, politics, and culture

Photo by Mark Thompson

I worked at Lyft from 2011 to 2013. At a time when the State of California is trying to force Lyft and Uber to pay drivers like full-time workers, gig-economy companies are finally getting a well-deserved critique.

Uber and Lyft’s Business Model May Be Dead. Good.” an article by Brian Merchant is making the rounds on Medium today. I applaud this essay and am in agreement with Merchant’s overall assessments, except I don’t think this business model will be over anytime soon.

One reason Lyft is so…

We watched it so you don’t have to

The House in Between Review

Photo by Callum Blacoe on Unsplash

Warning: spoilers

Unlike most haunted houses, this home has been studied for almost 10 years by a ghost-hunting team who has security cameras monitoring the home 24–7. Despite this, the cause of stuff moving around, swinging chandeliers, flickering ceiling lights, and even mysterious bright lights in the hallway remain unexplained.

Released in April of this year, it’s unique because the film gives debunking an honest shake and at least nominally looks for explanations that are neither paranormal nor supernatural.

The film features interviews with the home’s current owner and explores how the strange events in the home — weird lights…

LOL -- thanks, Derek, for letting us take a peek under the hood at your writing strategies. The new profile gif looks great, btw!

Jane Elizabeth

For marketing folks at startups who use data, tell stories, want better results, and to be happier at work.

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