Here are some of the articles we’ve been reading around this office this week.

Microsoft has a New Plan to Capitalize on Apple and Google’s Success – “At Microsoft’s developer conference today in San Francisco, the company made a proposition that mobile app makers might find hard to refuse: Reuse your existing code written for other platforms—Android, iOS, and the web—to create Windows apps.”

Facebook’s Secret Plan to Kill Google — and Become the Second Trillion-Dollar Company in the Process – “After all, Facebook is becoming the default web for a lot of people, particularly among the millennials (as The Independent pointed out here), is ultimately positioning itself as the social identification layer of the internet, has a thriving ecosystem, and seems to have a pretty clear roadmap for the next 5–10 years based on the last F8 keynote.”

Investors Swing for the Fences with $1B in Sports Tech Deals – “From wearable activity trackers to fantasy e-sports, technology is transforming the way athletes train for the game and fans engage with their teams. With all of this momentum VCs are swinging for the fences. Investors have spent over $1 billion in venture deals for sports-related startups over the past year — and everyone wants in on the action.”

The Microsoft Band Could Get Way More Interesting With DIY Web Apps – “But it’s not limited to glucose data: that could theoretically be any real-time data from any web server or website that packages it in the right way. Microsoft programmers tell me tells me you could create a Web Tile for any such source of data, send them in an email or even a Tweet. Then, anybody with the Microsoft Band app can download it, and boom—a new tile on their Band with a brand-new feature.”

Five Personas of an Effective Programmer (Thanks to Nate Lowry for recommending this article) – “In my opinion there are five basic personas that an effective programmer can utilize to do his/her job efficiently, and they can be combined in ways that might make them more inclined to certain “roles” in their development team.”

How FreshBooks Got Its (Design) Mojo Back (Thanks to Jarrod Wubbels for recommending this article) – ‘Our focus on design and user experience has paid off: we’ve won design awards, our customers love us?—?heck, Forbes even called us “incredibly user friendly.’ Sounds pretty great, right? We thought so too. Until it wasn’t.”

Here’s How Uber’s Co-Founder Is Going to Take on Amazon and eBay – “Now Camp is ready to introduce what he calls his next big idea: Operator, a company that aims to synthesize navigation of the digital and physical worlds. Its app uses a combination of algorithms and human assistants to connect consumers with retail workers who can help them shop.”

Timothy Kephart, Graffiti Tracker: “I hated my company.” – “The biggest mistake I made was getting caught up in the nonsense of the ‘tech scene.’ SXSW is a great example of that. When I first started going it was back during the time that some wine guy was talking about ‘crushing it’ and all sorts of other happy horse s—.”

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