Primeburbia: The new American community

Since 2010 Amazon has built 50 new fulfillment centers at a cost of $13 billion. 

I save a satellite photo to commemorate each time I receive a package from a new Amazon facility. I’m following the development of fulfillment clusters that occupy hundreds of acres of what was often crop land in the exurban halo of our metropolises. 

Their scale compounded by their out-in-the-middle-of-nowhereness is a surreal landscape to behold, and they’re emerging as a new pattern of community-building in the U.S.

Letter from a DIY Parent


This summer, my son Noah and I discovered DIY and fell in love. So far, he’s earned 11 skills, with many more to come!

In the process of earning his Data Visionary badge, Noah created a public transportation survey that went viral! He was featured on the Huffington Post and retweeted by people like Om Malik and Tim O’Reilly. Over 1,000 people took his survey. 

Noah was invited to tour SurveyMonkey and give a presentation on his survey! We showed the team and how much Noah has been inspired to do since he got started on the site.

(Noah is a featured customer on SurveyMonkey’s blog today: ).

We just love how DIY teaches kids that they can learn skills—like data analysis!—that would normally be considered too “big” for kids. Watching him manipulate his survey results, I was, frankly, a little awed. We’ve come a long way since the beginning of the summer.

Since he discovered DIY, Noah has baked scones, written and performed his own song, made a video about surface tension, edited a photo of himself to look like a zombie, and, yes, run a Brown Bag lunch presentation for a room full of adult data professionals. He has done so many more things than we would ever have thought possible at his age — and there are dozens of skills left to learn!

Thank you,
Marcella C.

Image made by Jonathan Glick.