Archive for the 'Blog' Category

In pursuit of perfection

According to Wikipedia: Perfection is, broadly, a state of completeness and flawlessness.

I think at the start of any project people seek this out.

You want it to be ideal.

But in the growth of a project, things get messy, paradoxes grow and exist, the pursuit of perfection is exactly that – an ongoing pursuit.  A day in day out looking to improve.

But you’ve got to realise it is that, don’t fret but embrace that it won’t be quite perfect. At least not forever!

February 28th, 2014

Kill your best material

Moving to NY I’ve been getting more into the local comedy scene, by that I mean the consumption of not the contribution. Although the dollars in the door is a contribution of sorts.

There are a lot of analogies in the joke writing process, Chris Rock notably tests his material in indie stand up venues before taking them large, Seinfeld edits his over time but focuses on always writing and perfecting a joke but Louis CK has an interesting one.

He evolves his season to season but what he does is to disarm himself of his best material he does last years closing joke first. That means he’s put his absolute best material up front and so… he needs to top it. He needs to do better, he needs to work harder on it…. and he’s got absolutely no choice.

Because if he doesn’t…. he’ll bomb.

What I like is that each have their own little processes that work best with their jokes, their personalities & style.

It’s very similar to the business rule of only hiring people smarter than yourself. It means over time the organization (or set) only gets better and better.

Killing your best material to lift the game… again.

February 27th, 2014

The best returns

I’ve been tuning in to the live stream of, todays the last day.

Earlier they had a great panel with Angel investors, this quote by Naval Ravikant stood out to me:

“the best returns in life come from compound interest”

Couldn’t agree more.

February 26th, 2014

Reasons not to

There’s always reasons not to do something

  • It’s too big
  • It’s too hard
  • It might not work
  • People might see me

Reasons not to are for people that won’t end up knocking off that lofty goal.

You just want to find the reasons to do it.

And put that on the wall – whilst you tackle the goal.

February 25th, 2014

Inefficient code leads to inefficient use of electricity

I’m streaming launch festival today, and Kanishk Parashar of Coin was speaking – talking about why what they’re working on hasn’t already been done.

One thing he noted was “writing code that is low energy as well” – efficient code with low power hardware i.e. bluetooth.

That reminded me of an article my good friend Dan Heier sent me, focused on Sustainable Web Design, that is it looks at the real cost of serving up a web page.  I.e. A 2008 paper from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory suggests it takes 13kWh to transmit 1GB!

Apple is focused on this as well building an energy score on apps in Maverick – meaning you can see what impact an application has on your battery life.

Worth thinking about, how does our code impact the power consumption at the other end and what’s the real cost of that?



February 24th, 2014

Future Proofing

There’s a balance, how much is too much?

Really as far as the conceivable future is enough.

When you start trying to build for all eventualities it’s too tough.

Work to what you’re 80% confident of.  Anymore beyond that’s probably getting a bit too expensive.

February 21st, 2014

Business as a Wiki

The power of the Wiki is in the fact that we can all contribute.  If it’s not right we can fix it.  Or if it’s controversial we can debate it.

Also the end result is clear, better sharper knowledge for all to access.

So you have a community of people motivated around achieving that goal, in a way they can all positively contribute.

It’s a great metaphor for how businesses should be fun, a clear goal for all and a clear way for everyone to contribute in a constructive way against that.  Most businesses are geared that way but don’t embrace the participation part, everyone should know how they add to the overall goal and how their peers also contribute.


February 20th, 2014

How Seinfeld keeps writing

What he does is draws up a calendar of boxes, each box represents a day he has to write, once he writes a joke that day, he can put a cross through it, after a while his job becomes trying to extend that daisy chain of boxes because you don’t want to break it.

He’s gamified his own writing!  By focusing on extending the chain, not the writing, he’s sidestepped the all too common writers block.  Nice hack.


Reminded of this whilst reading Steal Like an Artist.  More on Seinfelds hack here.

February 19th, 2014

Steal Like an Artist

This book Steal Like an Artist has long been on my list to buy, I started it last night, it’s excellent.

A quick short but motivating read.

Just a good reminder of constructive habits to fuel your creativity.

What that creativity is to you will vary but it’s applicable to anyone.

I’m happy to shout the first copy, the first person to email me [email protected] will get a copy from Amazon.

But the deal is, once you read it you have to pass it on to someone else, books like this shouldn’t sit on the shelf they’re best spread from person to person.

February 18th, 2014

The market function of buzzwords

In a complex market with a elongated value chain you may have 12 companies that value chain who don’t have that visibility of one another. They don’t have personal relationships up and down, or a whole visibility. And each component they’ve got to compete with others trying to take that component.

I.e. I found was someone was Promoting Tweets, another company wrote them and another set the strategy. In my mind too micro within an emerging field.

So that’s where buzzwords come in, they act as a guiding force of change in a complex market. They get the value chain in align and get everyone thinking about the changes they need to make happen. It’s that a certain kind of change has been branded.

Buzzwords are a big complex markets way of ensuring change comes about consistently. And that’s a good thing, buzzword or not.

February 10th, 2014

What if you could do anonymous sharing on Facebook?

What if  you could share anonymously to Facebook, or Twitter, or LinkedIn?

That’s a big what if.

I want to push this content to my friends but maybe not have them know it’s from me.  Or like WikiLeaks people may post on LinkedIn when it’s not attributable to them.

I dunno but I think it would change the dynamics quite a bit.

It’s your social group, just not attributed to you.


February 6th, 2014

At least one competitor

I was chatting with a fellow entrepreneur last night, around the at least one competitor rule.

A companies founder that he’d invested in was worrying that there was a competitor in the space.  You want at least one, as they help educate the market, they help bring a point of difference, they help sell.  You don’t want to the lone soldier growing the market.

Especially when your product is iterative, it’s worrying if others aren’t reaching a similar conclusion.

February 5th, 2014

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