26/05: ChangeThis | Pushing Through

How to Become the Best in the World By Seth Godin
By Seth Godin

The relentless rush to be mediocre.

that's what my new book, The Dip, is really about. Or, to be a lot more positive about it, it's about avoiding temptation and gravity and becoming the best in the world. You may already believe you're the best at what you do. But chances are, you don't. Chances are, you're settling, getting along, doing the best you can... given the circumstances. I'm amazed at how quickly people will stand up and defend not just the status quo but the inevitability of it. We've been taught since forever that the world needs joiners and followers, not just leaders. We've been taught that fitting in is far better than standing out, and that good enough is good enough. Which might have been fine in a company town, but doesn't work so well in a winner-takes-all world. now, the benefits that accrue to someone who is the best in the world are orders of magnitude greater than the crumbs they save for the average. no matter how hard-working the average may be. I've never met anYOne-anYOne-WHO needed tO Set tle fOr BeIng aver age. BeSt IS a SlOt tHat'S avaIl aBle tO everYOne, SOmeWHere.

I wrote this Changethis manifesto for you because, without even meeting you, I'm sure that if you understood what was at stake, you'd quit. early and often. You'd do whatever was necessary to not get stuck in the dip, to cease to be mediocre. People fly across the country to eat dinner in the restaurant they consider the best in the world. Hr execs open up their budgets to meet the salary demands of employees they consider the best in the world. voters wait in line to vote for a candidate that truly excites them, that they believe in, one who is the best in the world. Our culture celebrates superstars. We reward the product or the song or the organization or the employee that is number one. the rewards are heavily skewed, so much so that it's typical for #1 to get ten times the benefit of #10, and a hundred times the benefit of #100. BeIng tHe BeSt In tHe WOrld IS a SerIOuS advantage WHen It'S tIme tO tHInk aBOut marketIng. If YOu're tHe BeSt In tHe WOrld, In faCt, marketIng IS almOSt an aftertHOugHt.

Welcome to the Short Head

If you've read Chris anderson's The Long Tail, this isn't news to you. But I don't care about the long tail right now-I want to show you the short head. the short, big, profitable head. that's the juicy share of the market that belongs to the people at the top of the list. People don't have a lot of time and don't want to take a lot of risks. If you've been diagnosed with cancer of the navel, you're not going to mess around by going to a lot of doctors. You're going to head straight for the "top guy," the person who's ranked the best in the world. Why screw around if you get only one chance? When you visit a new town, are you the sort of person who wants to visit a typical restaurant, or do you ask the concierge for the best place? When you're hiring someone for your team, do you ask your admin to give you the average résumé, or do you ask him to screen out all but the very best qualified people? With limited time or opportunity to experiment, we intentionally narrow our choices to those at the top. You're not the only person who looks for the best choice. everyone does. as a result, the rewards for being first are enormous. It's not a linear scale. It's not a matter of getting a little more after giving a little more. It's a curve, and a steep one.

The (Real) Reason Number One Matters

the second reason there are such tremendous benefits to being number one is a little more subtle. Being at the top matters because there's room at the top for only a few. Scarcity makes being at the top worth something. there are hundreds of brands of bottled water, and they're all mostly the same. So we don't shop around for bottled water. there is no top for bottled water. Champagne is a different story. dom Pérignon is at or near the top, so we pay extra for it. Where does the scarcity come from? It comes from the hurdles that the markets and our society set up. It comes from the fact that most competitors quit long before they've created something that makes it to the top. that's the way it's supposed to be. the system depends on it.

The Best in the World?

anyone who is going to hire you, buy from you, recommend you, vote for you, or do what you want them to do is going to wonder if you're the best choice. "Best" as in "best for them, right now, based on what they believe and what they know." and "in the world" as in "their world, the world they have access to." So, if I'm looking for a freelance copy editor, I want the best copy editor in english, who's available, who can find a way to work with me at a price I can afford. that's my "best in the world." If I want a hernia doctor, I want the doctor who is best because she's recommended by my friends or colleagues and because she fits my picture of what a great doctor is. that, and she has to be in my town and have a slot open. So "world" is a pretty flexible term.

The mass market is dying. there is no longer one best song or one best kind of coffee. now there are a million micromarkets, but each micromarket still has a best. If your micromarket is "organic markets in tulsa," then that's your world. and being the best in that world is the place to be. Best is subjective. I (the consumer) get to decide, not you. World is selfish. It's my definition, not yours. It's the world I define, based on my convenience or my preferences. Be the best in my world and you have me, at a premium, right now.

Be the best in my world and you have me, at a premium, right now.

the world is getting larger, because I can now look everywhere when I want to find something (or someone). that means that the amount of variety is staggering, and it means I can define my world to be exactly what I have an interest in-and find my preferences anywhere on the planet. at the same time, the world is getting smaller, because the categories are getting more specialized. I can now find the best gluten-free bialys available by overnight shipping. I can find the best riskmanagement software for my industry, right now, online. I can find the best clothing-optional resort in north america with six clicks of a mouse. So while it's more important than ever to be the best in the world, it's also easier-if you pick the right thing and do it all the way. more places to win, and the stakes are higher, too.


It's at this point that the masses rise up as one and start talking about how obvious this all is. "Of course I want to be number one," they cry.

But they really don't. You really don't. Sure, conceptually it makes sense to be the best in the world. and if the best-in-the-world fairy came down and blessed you, well that would be great. But you're already trying everything you can think of to be the best in the world. You're already working as many hours as you can; you've already borrowed all the money you can; you've already tried everything you can... It's just not that easy, is it?

Thinking About The Dip

the reason that being the best in the world is worth so much is that few can do it. Scarcity carries a premium. the dip is the long slog between starting and mastery. a long slog that's actually a shortcut, because it gets you where you want to go faster than any other path. the dip is the combination of bureaucracy and busywork you must deal with in order to get certified in scuba diving. the dip is the difference between the easy "beginner" technique and the more useful expert approach in skiing or fashion design. the dip is the long stretch between beginner's luck and real accomplishment. the dip is the set of artificial screens set up to keep people like you out. If you took organic chemistry in college, you've experienced the dip. academia doesn't want too many unmotivated people to attempt medical school, so they set up a screen. Organic chemistry is the killer class, the screen that separates the doctors from the psychologists. If you can't handle organic chemistry, well, then you can't go to med school.

Scarcity, as we've seen, is the secret to value. If there weren't a dip, there'd be no scarcity.

at the beginning, when you announce that you're pre-med, you get all sorts of positive feedback and support. Your grandmother can't believe her good fortune! But soon, the incredible grind of organic chemistry kicks in and you realize you're doomed. at trade shows, you see dozens of companies trying to break into an industry. they've invested time and money to build a product, create a marketing organization and rent booth space-all in an attempt to break into a lucrative market. a year later, most of them don't return. they're gone, unable to get through the dip. the same thing happens to people who dream of the untold riches and power that accrue to the CeO of a fortune 500 company. Private jets, fancy country clubs, unchecked decision-making power. Who wouldn't want to live like modern-day royalty? Of course, if you look at the résumé of a typical CeO, you'll see that he endured a twenty-five-year dip before landing the job. for a quarter of a century, he needed to suck it up, keep his head down, and do what he was told. He needed to hit his numbers, work longer hours than everyone else, and kiss up to his boss of the moment. day in and day out, year after year. It's easy to be a CeO. What's hard is getting there. there's a huge dip along the way. If it was easy, there'd be too many people vying for the job and the CeOs couldn't get paid as much, could they? Scarcity, as we've seen, is the secret to value. If there weren't a dip, there'd be no scarcity.

SuCCeSSful PeOPle dOn't juSt rIde Out tHe dIP. tHeY dOn't juSt BuCkle dOWn and SurvIve It. nO, tHeY le an IntO tHe dIP. tHeY PuSH Harder, CHangIng tHe ruleS aS tHeY gO. juSt BeCauSe YOu knOW YOu're In tHe dIP dOeSn't me an YOu Have tO HaPPIlY lIve WItH It. dIPS dOn't l aSt quIte aS lOng WHen YOu WHIt tle at tHem.

So, Here's the Big Idea

the way you become the best in the world is by quitting the stuff where you can't be the best. that leaves you the resources to invest in getting through the dip. It's that simple. quit the dead ends and invest in the dips. Blog every day for three years until your blog is #1 in its field. give up your social life for a year until you make editor of the law review. last six seconds longer on every single exercise in the gym until your abs actually start to grow. Can you do everything? Of course not. Breadth isn't the point. the point is that in a world of infinite choice, in a world where the best in the world is worth more every single day, the only chance you've got is to find a dip and embrace it. realize that it's actually your best ally. the harder it is to get through, the better your chance of being the only one to get through it. Sticking with something just so you can be mediocre at it doesn't make a lot of sense to me. Being average is for losers.

ABout the Author

Seth godin is a bestselling author, entrepreneur and agent of change. author of eight books that have been bestsellers around the world: Permission Marketing, Unleashing the IdeaVirus, The Big Red Fez, Survival is Not Enough, Purple Cow, Free Prize Inside!, All Marketers are Liars and Small is the New Big, he is also the editor of The Big Moo, founder and CeO of Squidoo and one of the most popular business bloggers. Simply, Seth godin changes the way people think about marketing, change and work. homepage url: (Click on his head to read his blog.) downloAd thiS this manifesto is available from Send thiS Click here to pass along a copy of this manifesto to others. SuBScriBe learn about our latest manifestos as soon as they are available. Sign up for our free newsletter and be notified by email. Born on dAte this document was created on may 9, 2007 and is based on the best information available at that time. to check for updates, please click here to visit

ABout chAnGethiS

Changethis is a vehicle, not a publisher. We make it easy for big ideas to spread. While the authors we work with are responsible for their own work, they don't necessarily agree with everything available in Changethis format. But you knew that already. Changethis is supported by the love and tender care of 800-CeO-read. visit us at our main site or at our daily blog copyriGht info the copyright in this work belongs to the author, who is solely responsible for the content. this work is licensed under the Creative Commons attribution-nonCommercial-noderivs license. to view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 nathan abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, uSa. Cover image courtesy of Seth godin and Portfolio. whAt you cAn do You are given the unlimited right to print this manifesto and to distribute it electronically (via email, your website, or any other means). You can print out pages and put them in your favorite coffee shop's windows or your doctor's waiting room. You can transcribe the author's words onto the sidewalk, or you can hand out copies to everyone you meet. You may not alter this manifesto in any way, though, and you may not charge for it.

25/05: What Happens to Your body if you stop smoking Right now?

I think one of the main reasons it's so hard to quit smoking is because all the benefits of quitting and all the dangers of continuing seem very far away. Well, here's a little timeline about some of the more immediate effects of quitting smoking and how that will affect your body RIGHT NOW.

In 20 minutes your blood pressure will drop back down to normal.

In 8 hours the carbon monoxide (a toxic gas) levels in your blood stream will drop by half, and oxygen levels will return to normal.

In 48 hours your chance of having a heart attack will have decreased. All nicotine will have left your body. Your sense of taste and smell will return to a normal level.

In 72 hours your bronchial tubes will relax, and your energy levels will increase.

In 2 weeks your circulation will increase, and it will continue to improve for the next 10 weeks.

In three to nine months coughs, wheezing and breathing problems will dissipate as your lung capacity improves by 10%.

In 1 year your risk of having a heart attack will have dropped by half.

In 5 years your risk of having a stroke returns to that of a non-smoker.

In 10 years your risk of lung cancer will have returned to that of a non-smoker.

In 15 years your risk of heart attack will have returned to that of a non-smoker.

So, you have more immediate things to look forward to if you quit now besides just freaking out about not being able to smoke.

25/05: Disorder in the court....

Q:  What is your date of birth?

    A:  July fifteen.

    Q:  What year?

    A:  Every year.


    Q:  What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?

    A:  Gucci sweats and Reeboks.


    Q: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?

    A: Yes.

    Q: And in what ways does it affect your memory?

    A: I forget.

    Q: You forget.  Can you give us an example of something that you've forgotten?


    Q:  How old is your son, the one living with you?

    A:  Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can't remember which.

    Q:  How long has he lived with you?

    A:  Forty-five years.


    Q:  What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke that morning?

    A:  He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"

    Q:  And why did that upset you?

    A:  My name is Susan.


    Q:  And where was the location of the accident?

    A:  Approximately milepost 499.

    Q:  And where is milepost 499?

    A:  Probably between milepost 498 and 500.


    Q:  Sir, what is your IQ?

    A:  Well, I can see pretty well, I think.


    Q:  Did you blow your horn or anything?

    A:  After the accident?

    Q:  Before the accident.

    A:  Sure, I played for ten years. I even went to school for it.


    Q:  Trooper, when you stopped the defendant, were your red and blue lights flashing?

    A:  Yes.

    Q:  Did the defendant say anything when she got out of her car?

    A:  Yes, sir.

    Q:  What did she say?

    A:  What disco am I at?


    Q:  Now doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn't know about
          it until the next morning?


    Q:  The youngest son, the twenty-year old, how old is he?


    Q:  Were you present when your picture was taken?


    Q:  Was it you or your younger brother who was killed in the war?


    Q:  Did he kill you?


    Q:  How far apart were the vehicles at the time of the collision?


    Q:  You were there until the time you left, is that true?


    Q:  How many times have you committed suicide?


    Q:  So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?

    A:  Yes.

    Q:  And what were you doing at that time?


    Q:  She had three children, right?

    A:  Yes.

    Q:  How many were boys?

    A:  None.

    Q:  Were there any girls?


    Q:  You say the stairs went down to the basement?

    A:  Yes.

    Q:  And these stairs, did they go up also?


    Q:  Mr. Slatery, you went on a rather elaborate honeymoon, didn't you?

    A:  I went to Europe, Sir.

    Q:  And you took your new wife?


    Q:  How was your first marriage terminated?

    A:  By death.

    Q:  And by whose death was it terminated?


    Q:  Can you describe the individual?

    A:  He was about medium height and had a beard.

    Q:  Was this a male, or a female?


    Q:  Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice
          which I sent to your attorney?

    A:  No, this is how I dress when I go to work.


    Q:  Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?

    A:  All my autopsies are performed on dead people.


    Q:  All your responses must be oral, OK?  What school did you go to?

    A:  Oral.


    Q:  Do you recall the time that you examined the body?

    A:  The autopsy started around 8:30 p.m.

    Q:  And Mr. Dennington was dead at the time?

    A:  No, he was sitting on the table wondering why I was doing an


    Q:  Are you qualified to give a urine sample?


    Q:  Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?

    A:  No.

    Q:  Did you check for blood pressure?

    A:  No.

    Q:  Did you check for breathing?

    A:  No.

    Q:  So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began
          the autopsy?

    A:  No.

    Q:  How can you be so sure, Doctor?

    A:  Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.

    Q:  But could the patient have still been alive nevertheless?

    A:  It is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law somewhere.


    Q:  You were not shot in the fracas?

    A:  No, I was shot midway between the fracas and the navel.

10/05: History of Brandy

Brandy is distilled from fruits such as grapes, apples, blackberries, and apricots just to name a few. It is distilled around the globe. Depending on the region of origin and the type of fruit used, brandy can be classified into many different categories: Cognac and Armagnac, both French brandies, Applejack, an American apple brandy, Grappa, a grape brandy, etc. Brandy is, in essence, distilled wine. Most brandies are bottled at eighty proof, meaning forty-percent alcohol content. Brandy has a unique rating system intended to make identification of its many different types and aging categories.

The letters C, E, F, O, P, S, and V are used to describe the different varieties. C means cognac, E means extra, F means fine, O means old, P means pale, S means special, and V means very special. Combinations of these letters are used to distinguish different types of brandy. For example, VSOP is "very special old pale" which is aged for five years in a wood cask and often called five star brandies. There is also other vocabulary that brandy drinkers are familiar with. Napoleon means the brandy is at least four years old, usually much older. Vintage means that the liquor must be kept inside a wooden cask until the time it is bottled, and Hors D'age means the exact age of the brandy is unknown. Brandy is best served at room temperature.

Long before the sixteenth century wine was enjoying its status as one of the most popular drinks in Europe. In 1512 a Dutch trader, searching for a way in which to transport larger quantities of wine, found that by removing the water from the wine he could get more casks of wine onto his ship. He could then add the missing water back to the wine when he reached his destination. This was known as "brandewijn" which meant burnt wine in Dutch and eventually became brandy.

Cognac, one of the more famous and popular brandies, originated in the seventeenth century when the Cognacais family began to double distill their wines. This drink quickly became one of the most essential and profitable exports in France. It was first exported to Holland, the birthplace of the liquor, and was soon expended to England, the Far East, and the New World. In France cognac became the drink of choice for the aristocracy. The King used to partake of its fruity and potent taste with strict regularity. Cognac, both then and to this present day, is produced in the Cognac region of France. Cognac it made from white wine, which is produced from the vineyards of this area.

Brandies saw their introduction into the New World in the late seventeenth century. Spanish monks, who developed a taste for the drink before they left Europe, brought with them to the New World many casks of Brandy. However, when they ran out of it they quickly found that the native grapes that grew in California were a perfect source for brandy. They also found that other fruits could be used to produce the much-loved drink. At this time several other counties were also discovering the cacophony of fruit that brandy could be derived from. Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Australia, and South Africa were all producing fruit brandy by the end of the eighteenth century.

Brandy was discovered on accident. However, this accident has led to an entirely new market. Producers quickly found that brandy could captivate a large, passionate audience. It's many different types offer many different levels of sweetness, bitterness, and smoothness. Brandy is one drink that can be specialized for each and every fan. Brandy truly is a personal drink.

This informational article of Brandy was written by Brian Smith.  Please feel free to comment if you agree/disagree with any points.

04/05: Satellite Tracking!

GSM mobile phone tracking system via the GPS-TRACK satellite network

Simply based on your telephone number, GPS-TRACK can triangulate your exact location by connecting to your cellular provider!  Even your landline can be triangulated!  This is crazy!

Based on repeater triangulation, the system tracks mobile phones using GPS and GSM technology

We are not responsible for possible tracking errors that may occur.

Approximate margin of error:

10 meters (max.) for mobile phones in Europe and the U.K.
25 meters (max.) for mobile phones in the U.S.A., South America and Canada.
50 meters (max.) for mobile phones elsewhere.
This system will not work in countries without GSM technology networks.

Check out the Beta version by click on the link below: