Phegley drives in 8, leading A’s offensive onslaught in Pittsburgh

first_imgPerhaps all the A’s needed was a trip to Primanti Brothers, the iconic Pittsburgh eatery where sandwiches are served with French fries and coleslaw.Or maybe this was bound to happen, the club’s offensive doldrums due to dissipate.Whatever the reason, soon after the rain clouds in Pittsburgh parted, Oakland’s offense awoke from its slumber, and the A’s snapped a six-game losing streak by beating the baseball all around PNC Park during a 14-1 victory over the Pirates on Friday to open a …last_img read more

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Ryan Lee, Aug. 7

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The current weather has helped the beans quite a bit and I am hoping for a modest recovery there. I think the corn is what it is. After the corn tassels, we say around here that it is hiding its sins. When you ride around in a pickup truck it doesn’t look to bad, but when you get in the combine you see what is really out there. We can live in denial for a little while until the combine hits the field. We are still going to have a crop but I think it will be highly variable. I think it will be one of those years where one day we will set a record for bushels handled on the better farms and the next day we could set a record for acres harvested in a day with the fields of poorer crops. We could be setting records for one end and then the other.We did spray three fields of corn. We have a love-hate relationship with split planters. You can get some very valuable information on hybrids, but then when you have one that is more susceptible to disease, you wonder whether to spray or not.We have had about three-quarters of an inch of rain this month so far and the crazy thing is that we wanted it and we’d like to have a little more. It was amazing how quickly the stress showed up with the temperatures in the 90s. The corn has no root system and started to curl up like it had been dry all along.On the soybeans, we made almost blanket applications of fungicides. We had varying levels of disease, but my brother said that even at 10 miles an hour you could still see the frogeye. We got to it as soon as we were able.We just had the county and the state fair and I am really proud of the job that my girls and nieces did at the fair with their livestock projects.last_img read more

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Are Crowdsourcing and Outsourcing No-Nos For Startups?

first_imgchris cameron Related Posts Chances are, if you’ve called customer service to enough companies, you’ve come across a representative who works for a call-center which has been contracted to handle a comapany’s account. Large corporations that don’t want to employ their own agents and maintain their own facilities will often outsource customer service to a third party, which at times can mean a company in another part of the world. Bangalore, India was famously portrayed for its role in call-center outsourcing in the Thomas Friedman book The World Is Flat, servicing many large American companies. But tools like outsourcing or crowdsourcing are not always beneficial to every breed of company.A recent post on crowdsourcing from the startup blog Pluggd.in, and a Forbes article about outsourcing have both warned startups of the possible complications of both. Crowdsourcing is similar to outsourcing in that a task normally conducted by an employee is shifted to a third party, but in this case the job is performed by numerous people, not just one. If I wanted to outsource the web design of my new site, I might hire a graphic designer, but if I wanted to crowdsource, I could use a service like crowdSPRING to host a competition and pick from a whole slew of designs and designers.While crowdsourcing and outsourcing are fundamentally different, they share similar risks, especially for startups and small businesses. As the Pluggd.in article suggests, more mature companies might be better candidates for this type of work. “Startups do not fit the ‘business case’ that could garner qualified social feedback for its product from the crowd,” the article argues. “The product engagement within the market has not been long enough, and more often than not the sample size of [the] crowd may not be representative at all.”The idea here is that crowdsourcing works better when the audience participating is more aware of the product in the market. With startups, crowds may not have the most accurate sense of the best direction for an idea, especially one that is new and innovative. That’s what you, the entrepreneur, are for. The article warns startups to not rely too heavily on information gathered from the crowd in terms of which features to keep, which to throw away, which to add, or any other kind of information. Startups should always listen to their users, but work with them, not for them.Along the lines of do-it-yourself, the Forbes article chronicles an unfortunate tale of outsourcing gone wrong. In my interview this week with Danny Wong of Blank Label, he pointed me to this article based on an interview with his co-founder, Fan Bi. In it, Bi warns startups looking to outsource design and development to cheaper labor pools should think twice before doing so.“It was too good of an opportunity to pass up when we were trying to bootstrap our business. Getting the work done for a quarter of the price was tempting,” says Bi. “The team abroad wanted quick and dirty projects that can be turned around quickly and get them paid. They had no real ownership.”The outsourced work came back looking “terrible”, he says. The designers and coders they had outsourced had no passion or personal investment in the work they were doing, and it showed in the quality. For startups, it seems that finding a partner or employee who is just as passionate about the company and its vision is well worth the extra money for the quality they bring with them. Entrepreneurs are highly motivated and driven people, and companies succeed when a group of passionate people set their sights on one goal. Outsourcing and crowdsourcing seem to go against that mantra, and one could argue that these are lazy roads to go down for a startup. But are crowdsourcing and outsourcing a pair of techniques that should be avoided outright by startups? Or are there times when a startup can employ one of these tactics? Let us know how you feel about this issue in the comments.Photo by Flickr user Vilma.com. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img Tags:#start#startups 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

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