Self-driving cars + Brain-implant technology + Screen consultants

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Despite high hopes, self-driving cars are ‘way in the future’: NYT reports, companies say the industry overestimated the arrival of autonomous vehicles, which still struggle to anticipate what other drivers and pedestrians will do.

Tesla floats fully self-driving cars as soon as this year. Many are worried about what that will unleash. WP reports, transportation officials and executives expressed worries that the company’s expedited timeline could result in crashes, lawsuits and confusion.

Musk-backed Neuralink unveils brain-implant technology: FT reports, start-up plans to use information strips it calls ‘threads’ to bring medical advances.

Fade to black: According to an article by Nellie Bowles of the NYT, a small minority of hapless parents are hiring coaches to get their kids off their mobile phones. Some of these “screen consultants” charge up to $250/hour.

Move over, baseball dads: CB Insights reports, the world of high tech parenting also recently revealed the story of Dave Herzog who was profiled in The Boston Globe by Dugan Arnett. Herzog, unlike the parents in the NYT article, is trying to get his son in front of more screens. Herzog has taken his son, Jordan, out of high school to focus on becoming a full-time gamer. Practicing 10 to 14 hours a day, Herzog says Jordan is going after “fame, prestige, earnings that, he believes, could one day reach into the millions.” It’s perhaps just a matter of time until an IMG Academy-like institution crops up for student-athlete gamers.

Work remote from a Scottish country estate this November


Brigadoon is organizing its first remote gathering of entrepreneurs and thought leaders at Carphin House in Fife, Scotland this November 11-15.

Carphin House is a country mansion situated on 15 acres of stunning Scottish countryside near to St. Andrews.

The house is a natural blend of historic tradition and modern comfort. The house offers ensuite bedrooms, a country farm kitchen, a sitting and sunroom, plus a beautifully furnished dining room.

There is plenty of space to get lost in and explore, but at the same time enjoy roaring fireplaces and cozy couches perfect for strategic thinking or engaging conversations.

With cows lowing in the distance and nothing but blue sky and countryside, Carphin House is the perfect place to work remotely.

Think of four days where you can work remotely in a country estate, spend the day as you want, work on your book, strategize, think, read, whiteboard, check-out, or go for a hike.

End each day with private chef prepared dinners with fellow participants where the topic of conversation is business development and entrepreneurship.

Want entrepreneurs and thought leaders?


Established in 2013, Brigadoon is the global network where entrepreneurs and thought leaders gather to make better connections and to discuss emerging issues shaping commerce and culture.

Brigadoon is an opt-in, word of mouth community of leaders looking to learn other subject matter experts to create a global network committed to public service, solving problems, engaging in conversation, and building businesses.

We keep participants hush-hush, but our network ranges from trade associations to global think tanks, plus senior executives and global policy experts, as well as leaders from high-growth entrepreneurial businesses and some of the world's largest multinational corporations.

How you can get involved?

Global Sponsor = global sponsorship and branding

Salon Dinner Sponsor = sponsorship and branding for one salon dinner

Reception Sponsor = sponsorship and branding for one reception at a salon dinner or Brigadoon Sundance 2020

Got other ideas - possibly add a product to a swag bag?

Let's talk or get more information - here.

Vanity Metrics, Young-Old, HJ Heinz, Momentum, Streaming TV, Fred Wilson


Brigadoon Weekly
July 14, 2019
Curation and commentary from
Marc A. Ross

Reporting from Alexandria, Virginia

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Vanity Metrics, Young-Old, HJ Heinz, Momentum, Streaming TV, Fred Wilson


Vanity metrics are feel-good nonsense

I was chatting with an entrepreneur earlier this week.

I asked why she cared so much about reading her Instagram insights.

When you look at your Instagram insights what do you think?

Should it be:

“How many of my followers are engaged?”


“Is my content making an impact?”

In fact - there is just one thing that any entrepreneur should be asking themselves.

It is:

"Did I make a sale?”

I’ve co-founded or founded four businesses so far.

I know why I joined my first startup.

It was because I wanted to be part of a business.

That was pretty much it.

Yes, there as a market opportunity, it was technology, based in California, checking all the cool boxes.

But frankly, I think I was more motivated on just being part of a startup more than anything else the business could impact or do.

Forgetting what the real point of business was.

To make sales.

The business didn’t last long and famously crashed after one year.


This chat from earlier this week reminded me that just being in a business is not enough.

Business is about sales.

It is important to remember why we use tools like Instagram.

We use tools like Instagram not for the feel-good vanity metrics like likes, comments, and followers.

We use tools like Instagram to make sales.

- Marc

Marc A. Ross is the founder of Brigadoon and an advisor and connector working at the intersection of globalization, disruption, and politics. Ross specializes in helping entrepreneurs and thought leaders make better connections and better communications.

Brigadoon Events + Workshops

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Lucy Kellaway on turning 60 — and starting out afresh: From work to dating, the life of an ‘aged adolescent’ is neither slow nor predictable. Some gerontologists have started to subdivide old into “Young-Old”, which runs from 60 to about 75 and bargains for activity, health, and productivity, and “Old-Old”, which bargains for none of the above.

Brand man: The HJ Heinz Story: Heinz’s innovations and focus on perfection did not stop at the farm. With the aid of brother John, who continued working for the company after he sold out, and later Sebastian Mueller, the Heinz company led the way in the high-volume, efficient production of food products. Over and over again, the company was the first: the first to have a fully electrified factory and the first to produce its own bottles using the latest bottle manufacturing technologies. HJ was among the first to build modern plants which were spotlessly clean. He had an art department which prepared every label and every ad. Each step of the manufacturing and packaging process was under his control.

Momentum isn’t magic—vindicating the hot hand with the mathematics of streaks: Nearly every basketball player, coach or fan believes that some shooters have an uncanny tendency to experience the hot hand.

The great race to rule streaming TV: In their rush to match Netflix, competitors like HBO, Hulu, and Amazon are ordering a slew of content — ushering out the age of “prestige TV” and ushering in an age of anything goes.

11 lessons from venture capitalist Fred Wilson


From salon dinners to excursions and multi-day retreats, Brigadoon organizes a number of powerpoint free, conversation focused events in distinctive settings that involve all participants and foster deeper connections.

This fall Brigadoon will organize salon dinners in four cities, a sailing cruise on the Chesapeake Bay, a tour of one of the top design schools in the world, and take full control of a country estate in Fife, Scotland.

Here are the Brigadoon 2019 conclaves designed to improve your individual and organizational performance:

Brigadoon Annapolis 2019 | Salon Dinner + Sailing
September 12-13 | 25% tickets sold

Brigadoon Los Angeles 2019 | Salon Dinner
September 26 | 25% tickets sold

Brigadoon Detroit 2019 | Salon Dinner + Tour
October 3-4 | 50% tickets sold

Brigadoon Cincinnati 2019 | Salon Dinner
October 24 | 25% tickets sold

Brigadoon Remote 2019 | Scotland
November 11-15 | 50% tickets sold

Brigadoon Sundance 2020
February 23-25 | 10% tickets sold

More details and tickets - here.

Enjoy the ride + plan accordingly.