Saturday, April 30, 2011
2600hz - The Future of Cloud Telecom from 2600hz on Vimeo.
Friday, April 29, 2011
Thursday, April 28, 2011
"Instapaper Free always had worse reviews in iTunes than the paid app. Part of this is that the paid app was better, of course, but a lot of the Free reviews were completely unreasonable.
Only people who buy the paid app — and therefore have no problem paying $5 for an app — can post reviews for it. That filters out a lot of the sorts of customers who will leave unreasonable, incomprehensible, or inflammatory reviews. (It also filters out many people likely to need a lot of support.)
I don't need every customer. I'm primarily in the business of selling a product for money. How much effort do I really want to devote to satisfying people who are unable or extremely unlikely to pay for anything?"
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Wonderful goodbye post by my buddy Alex Bain on his exit from Apple to go to Facebook. This is how you do it. And it's clear how much he loves Apple. My favorite part was this little story embedded in the broader post about the last time he left Apple.
Well, you could also come back when you're done!
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Your dad wore tube socks before you did. The skinny jeans of summer, your dad’s socks were tight, tall and always on him, just like your mom. He rocked mid leg tan lines like a boss and made fun of the kids who’s socks only reached their ankles. So hipsters, next time you’re pulling on a pair of baseball socks and donning a sweatband before packing up and heading off for a day in Dolores Park, remember this…Your dad was the king of summer and tube socks were his crown.
Monday, April 25, 2011
Sunday, April 24, 2011
If you're going to be on Earth, why not in San Francisco? It's out of this world. Every day should be Earth Day, don't you think?
We who live in the Bay Area sometimes need to pinch ourselves and take notice that not everyone wakes up to such beauty.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
"Some people insist that if we focus on "business fundamentals" and get "back to basics," all will return. Not so. The promise that you can get paid really well to do precisely what your boss instructs you to do is now a dream, no longer a reality.
It takes a long time for a generation to come around to significant revolutionary change. The newspaper business, the steel business, law firms, the car business, the record business, even computers... one by one, our industries are being turned upside down, and so quickly that it requires us to change faster than we'd like.
It's unpleasant, it's not fair, but it's all we've got. The sooner we realize that the world has changed, the sooner we can accept it and make something of what we've got. Whining isn't a scalable solution."
The New York Times has an interesting article on the front page this morning: "As Consumers Cut Spending, 'Green' Products Lose Allure." The article notes that sales of a number of environmentally friendly products such as Clorox's Green Works have fallen sharply.
The article presents the results of a study done by Sanford C. Bernstein looking at sales of green products across 22 different product categories. The results are astonishing; green products now have less than a 2% market share and are declining. This includes green niche brands and green versions of traditional brands. Perhaps the most interesting finding: green products have never had more than a 2.5% market share.
This raises an interesting question: how can this be? Isn't everyone concerned about the environment?...
Friday, April 22, 2011
Thursday, April 21, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
- I made myself check Twitter only once a day and turned off all Twitter notifications. That was a huge help.
- I turned off almost every iPhone App Notification. This was huge too.
- I check Facebook quickly a few times a day. What really helps is that I have an RSS Feed from Facebook with all Posts and Status Updates from my friends. I rarely actually go to the Facebook site, and do it only when I want to leave a comment or look at someone's pictures.
- Email still get's me. I'm trying to do more of my email in bulk situations where I can crank through a lot more of them.
- Basecamp, a project management solution, has become a life safer, because we manage all the BensFriends.org To Do's through it. Email still piles up from Ben's Friends, but things don't get lost and everything is assignable and actionable.
- The Treadmill has become my safe haven for playing Words With Friends, Twitter, and Facebook and reading non essential blog posts. I've given myself permission to do whatever I want, as long as I'm exercising at a high enough intensity. It's made exercising at the gym more fun and I enjoy the reading and games a lot more.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
It's about the author's attempts to bribe his way into the best NYC restaurants. It's one of the best articles I've read in an long time. Loved it. Here is a small excerpt.
Seconds later the woman departs and the man is left alone. This is my moment, I decide. I reach for the twenty and positively bolt toward the podium. I crane my left arm around the side. “I hope you can fit us in,” I mumble, and slip the bill into his hand. I am sweating; my heart is racing. “Oh. Thank you,” he says. “Don’t worry.”
Two minutes pass—two minutes!—and the woman approaches. “We can seat you now,” she says, and leads us to a corner booth. “This is one of our best tables,” she adds. Suddenly I’m Frank Sinatra. I’m King of the Strip. I exude aftershave and savoir faire. Call it the fedora effect. My girlfriend looks at me in a way she hasn’t since I surprised her by uncharacteristically demolishing a friend on the tennis court.
Monday, April 18, 2011
CIA's 'Facebook' Program Dramatically Cut Agency's Costs
How Eddie Vedder Gave Me My Start in Business
"In 1995, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder was inducting Neil Young into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. I was a high school girl with every intention of getting to New York City to meet Eddie. But how?
I asked the Waldorf if one of the writers for my magazine could get in to interview attendees and review the event and they suggested faxing in a request for a press pass. Only problem: I didn’t have a magazine.
So I launched one in less than a day. My cousin was the publicist for a major metal band in the '80s and agreed to help with content. In a matter of hours, after massively struggling through the software on our Apple IIC, we had come up with Zip Magazine -- it sounded snappy -- and picked really cool font for the header that was underlined with … wait for it … a zipper.
Lo-and-behold, Zip Magazine's editor landed a press pass to the event. I still haven't come down."
Friday, April 15, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Seth's Blog: "If every chicken coop has a video camera in it, quality will obviously go up. Confidence in the product will go up. Employee behavior will improve as well, because it's hard to torture a chicken if you know you're going to get caught.
But wait, you might argue... if we have to take better care of the chickens, our costs will go up as well.
Here's the thing: when consumers get used to transparency, they're also more interested in the quality of what you sell, and are more likely to willingly pay extra. They'll certainly cross the street to buy from an ethical provider. And once people start moving in that direction, the cost of being an unethical provider gets so high that you either change your ways or fade away.
Chicken farms don't need a law prohibiting possession of images. They need a producer who will make a ton of great (true) chicken movies. Inundate us with images of cleanliness and quality instead of blacking us out. Don't race to the bottom (you might win). Instead, force your competition to race you to the top instead."
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Usually I'm in the 50's (not good) but something clicked last night. Can't wait to go to bed tonight!
Monday, April 11, 2011
Friday, April 8, 2011
Thursday, April 7, 2011
One of the most valuable assets we all have is our time, and by working at a given company, you are investing your most precious asset in that company. Sure you get paid, but you could get paid anywhere. Taking that job means you are a true believer, and we should all pay attention to that.
I should have seen the Diamond Nut Performance below coming two years ago when Joanna told me about her new job. I bought the stock today, but I left 150% of performance on the table by not acting when Joanna told me how great her new company was. I'm going to start paying more attention to where my friends work.
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
The Sound of Young America
Monday, April 4, 2011
"You can either see founding a company as something you’re doing because you want to produce good software, or you can see it as something you do so you can sell your stock and make a killing and move on."
Well said by Will Shipley in a post worth reading on entrepreneurship. I found it via Marco of Instapaper
I see both sides of this via my day job in venture capital at Lighthouse Capital and my side project, Ben's Friends patient support sites. A lot of startups are trying to "hit the hole" so to speak, and make something worthwhile and then cash out. It turns out that the best companies I work with at work though are the ones that are run to build something lasting and are not quick flips. Perhaps I have a biased sample because I gravitate to those people and can connect with them better because I grew up in a family business for 25 years. Farmers usually beat the miners. Something to think about if you are starting something.