Welcome to our new weekly feature: The Fast Company Staff Recommender. Each week, one person on our team will share the three best things they read or saw on the Internet. This could include anything from a riveting blog post to a great social media campaign. The goal is to help you—our readers—get to know our team, and give you some great recommendations for the weekend. Without further delay...
Name: Noah Robischon
Role at Fast Company: Executive Editor, Digital
Titillating fact: Before he entered journalism, Noah was a "vagabond juggler" who performed on the streets of Spain and, as he puts it, "lived with gypsies." He even juggled fire! Nowadays, most of his performances are for his two kids—when he's not juggling Fast Company's growing network of sites.
Things he's loving:
1. The New Digital Age: Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and Business by Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen: This is the kind of book that makes me want to move my office to a different part of the world for a few months to better understand how the digital tools we take for granted still have the power to change everything. I approached it with deep skepticism. It's co-authored by two incredibly accomplished fellows, Google's Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen, who could have used the pages to further their own philosophy about how digital communication ought to shape society—and there is a lot of that in the book. But it's also a reminder that we are still in the earliest stages of a massive change, and for millions of people around the globe even the simple act of getting online (usually via a mobile phone) can have a radical effect on their culture and identity.
2. The Dish: Andrew Sullivan's ongoing conversation with readers restores my faith in digital journalism. He is up-front about his biases, corrects mistakes (even the ones he passes on via other sources) in real time, and offers a thought-provoking mix of aggregated news and analysis every day. And he's working even harder at it since going independent in February, and asking readers to pay—I support him, in part for selfish reasons.
3. GoldieBlox: Every so often I meet an entrepreneur with a clear vision and a product that has huge potential. GoldieBlox is an engineering toy for girls that mixes storytelling with mechanical and spatial skills-building. It started as a Kickstarter campaign, and soon the toy will be sold at major retailers. The founder, Debbie Sterling, has created a core storyline for Goldie that could be expanded into books, television, apps, and video games. Her parents wanted her to be an actress, instead she went to Stanford and studied engineering. The students in her program were predominantly male, and that's part of why she decided to build GoldieBlox, so that in a few more years that class will be different.
[Juggling Phones: Everett Collection via Shutterstock]