Nerd Corner #64

Costco, Ultramarathons, data centers, recycling, and more!

Hey folks!

I finally got to condense my notes from Born To Run, so far my favorite book this year. Most of my obsession with running comes from this book and Murakami's memoir.

What I am Reading 📚

This week I'm reading two different books. I usually try reading only one at a time but since one of them is fiction I'm it treating more like entertainment.

The first one is "Doing Content Right" by Steph Smith. I'm such a marketing and SEO illiterate that I'm learning lots just in the first few chapters. I'll share my notes as soon as I can.

The other is "What Makes Sammy Run?" by Budd Schulberg. I didn't know how controversial it was when it was published in the 1940s (it portrayed Hollywood life in a way not many wanted to be public). So far I'm enjoying it a lot.

Nerd Corner 🤓

All my friends know that I'm a Costco fan. So much so that when I talk about it they compare me to one of those door-to-door salespeople or a Jehová Witness knocking on people's door asking "Do you have a moment to talk about Costco"?

There's not much I can say in my defense other than acknowledging the fact 😂.. I tend to be obsessive about things I like and enjoy.

So, in case you were wondering I really like Costco because of their business model and how they've built their brand as a powerful combination of resilience and convenience. Resilience because they've not only managed to survive but thrive as a big-box brick and mortar store in the age of Amazon and Instacart. Year after year they continue to add members (around 100 million 🤯 ) and are currently in spot 14 of the Fortune 500 list. In a sense, they're the original Amazon. In exchange for loyalty (and a yearly fee) they give you lots of convenience. Convenience because they focus on providing customers the best products at the lowest possible prices. Costco doesn't make money on the products they sell to you, they make money on having you as a member going week after week (I try to limit myself to bi-monthly trips). And, as I shared way back in Nerd Corner #53, their Kirkland brand only packs top-quality products.

If you want to know more this presentation is a must-read. And if you want to know everything about their products you can binge-watch (like I did) FlavCity's Costco shopping videos (thanks Marcos for sharing!)

Cool Finds 🤯

  • Speaking of running, this past weekend was the fourth edition of the Moab 240 a 240-mile ultramarathon through the Moab desert. Endurance Jedi master Courtney Dauwalter holds the current record (57 hours and 55 minutes). When she did this in 2017 she outran the second place by almost 10 hours!

  • This is how a recycling modern recycling facility works. It looks impressive but makes me wonder about the benefits and costs associated with it. I'm preparing an article on this topic. If you have any resources I'd be grateful if you send them my way!

  • Microsoft is trying to build data centers underwater! This is one of those projects that restore my faith in humanity. If they work they will run on renewable energy and will provide new habitats for marine life.

Before you go 😎

If you’re enjoying these emails it would mean the world to me if you share it with a friend or two. Just send them this link to sign up. I’m trying to make this one of your must-read emails each week!

And, if you come across anything interesting this week, send it my way. I love discovering new things through Nerd Corner readers!

Have an awesome week!