“One way to avoid killing your heart is to decide that you will spend your whole life growing up. I am not saying you should aspire to the maturity level of the characters in Hot Tub Time Machine; I am suggesting we resist a life that looks, in line-graph form, like it goes up and up and up and then it stops, and then it levels out, and then it stays on that flat plane until death. I hope to live a life that goes up and up and up until the end, with the inevitable dip here and there. I hope to continue to learn and change.”—Tavi Gevinson, “Forever,” a remarkable essay
“Bitcoin economy is not a revolution in a sense of violent redistribution of wealth in a “fairer” manner. It is a leap forward by forgetting about how much was destroyed or stolen and focusing on how much can be preserved and protected. It’s a truly peace-making tool for the whole humanity. People who think about Bitcoin as only a money-moving tool, or a get-rich-quick scheme grossly underestimate it. It enables much more than what the web gives. The web gives us freedom to exchange information. Bitcoin gives us freedom to exchange everything.”—Oleg Andreev: Bitcoin and Gold
“I Just Want Who Ever Reading This To Know That Anything Is Possible, No Matter How Crazy It May Seem, Anything IS Possible You Just Have To Figure It Out. Get Your Self Esteem Up And Like Yourself, Then Like Your Ideas. We Live In A World Where People Dont Even Like Their Own Ideas, That Why You Have People Copying One Thing Thats Working So Much, Then Everything Gets Over Saturated With The Same Shit, And That Goes With Fashion, Music And All That. If People Actually Loved Themselves And Believed In Themselves More You Know How Many More Crazy Things Would Be Created? There Is No Fucking Limit To Anything! ( Except Elevators).”—Tyler The Creator
As the employees sat, hushed, Dick [Costolo] paced in front of them with the microphone in his hand and told a story about their recent move.
He said that when he had directed the movers to transport the artwork from the old office, he had instructed them to leave one piece of art behind. It had hung in the Folsom Street office since late December 2009. The piece of art was in a black frame with a white border. In a bit of irony, it had been hung upside down. And in bold white letters on a dark background, it made a statement in thirty-six characters: “Let’s make better mistakes tomorrow.”
The new office, Dick explained, meant that it was time for Twitter to grow up as a company. To the end of rolling site outages and a long list of other problems that had plagued Twitter’s infancy.
"We’re leaving the motto of making better mistakes tomorrow in the old building," Dick said. "That’s not the type of company we are anymore."
“I couldn’t help to start thinking about the underlying mechanisms and how a lot of these ingredients (experienced founders, technical backgrounds, etc.) are all probably highly correlated with critical thinking and an established processes to enumerate and question assumptions.”—Gabriel Weinberg: Are you questioning your operating assumptions enough?
SMS from unknown number:
When you get a chance would you please text me Rick's phone number thank you
who dis? Rick Who?
Seriously. This came to my email. So there is no mention of who this is.
Come on Lisa you starting to scare me who has my truck
Ok Lisa you had fun punking me but I have to schedule furniture pickup and I have to know proximately when I'm going to get the truck back So would you please give me the phone number I beg of you
SMS hour later:
Whoever you are I apologize I had the wrong number
“My dear friend, the actor Ken Page, who lived in both places for years told me that New York is a river and LA a lake. New York has a current that pulls you in some direction. Where LA has none. So you have to row your boat in LA. You gotta get motivated. LA will test your passions, friendships, beliefs. You live in LA long enough, you change. You have to.”—Alec Baldwin
“There’s a lack of creativity in every field. People are afraid because the powers control people. Only place people can be fully creative is Silicon Valley. There’s a lack of creativity in Hollywood, clothing, education system, on the globe period.”—kanye (via wordbk)
Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind. Cultivate that capacity for “negative capability.” We live in a culture where one of the greatest social disgraces is not having an opinion, so we often form our “opinions” based on superficial impressions or the borrowed ideas of others, without investing the time and thought that cultivating true conviction necessitates. We then go around asserting these donned opinions and clinging to them as anchors to our own reality. It’s enormously disorienting to simply say, “I don’t know.” But it’s infinitely more rewarding to understand than to be right — even if that means changing your mind about a topic, an ideology, or, above all, yourself…
…Be generous. Be generous with your time and your resources and with giving credit and, especially, with your words. It’s so much easier to be a critic than a celebrator. Always remember there is a human being on the other end of every exchange and behind every cultural artifact being critiqued. To understand and be understood, those are among life’s greatest gifts, and every interaction is an opportunity to exchange them.
Alec Wilkinson writes about Shadow, a project to archive the world’s dreams, and Hunter Lee Soik, its founder: http://nyr.kr/1b7Zl3i
“‘What would happen if we created a space where dreams were organized?’ Soik continued. ‘Show me every car dream. Show me every car dream in Moscow. Show me every red-car dream that involved men living in Las Vegas. Compare that to Tokyo or Paris. Do famous people dream differently? Do you have more positive dreams if you have more money in the bank?’”
Badass Illustration by Tom Bachtell.
Hunter may be my favorite storyteller I know; I’m stoked for Shadow.
It’s the future of the Internet that I believe the USV team innately understands and it happens to have some other benefits that I outline below:
OPEN VC It makes public what the USV team was probably already doing internally and allows for public feedback and discussion.
DIRECT ENGAGEMENT It allows entrepreneurs to get a better sense of each partners interests (based on their links and comments) and allows for direct engagement around mutual interests.
NEXT LEVEL AVC Scales the avc.com community. Fred posts daily and has a huge following that probably refresh avc.com before they even get out of bed in the am. This allows him to slowly transition his community to have another place to communicate and connect once he stops posting daily sometime in the next decade.
BRAND STRENGTHENING Allows for the warm fuzzy emotional transference to the USV brand when engaging in a stimulating discussion or finding a rad post.
NEW VOICES The community is still fresh and doesn’t have norms (yet) that often dissuade new users from engaging (see: HN & reddit). This opportunity allows for brand new engagement of all things Internet.
NEW TRENDS By being a hub the USV team will start to see new trends and patterns before they become interesting to others. Their pattern recognition as served them well to date, this will only sharpen it.
PORTFOLIO PIMPING They have another outlet to promote the companies they invest in.
Maintaining a community is not an easy task; by making the community front and center of their site the USV team seem to be interested in putting in the energy that it will take to maintain and grow.
“The No. 1 challenge in building a great company is understanding yourself. Most companies reflect the strengths and weaknesses of their founders. Those that are more mindful of their own strengths and weaknesses tend to build more balanced businesses.”—
Albert Wenger, in Financial Post interview, ahead of Oct 23rd fireside chat in Toronto.
“Currently, it seems that there are two raging nerd camps: 3d printing, and multirotor copters. Currently, both are almost functionally useless. I’ve never seen anything 3d printed worth a god damn, and there isn’t enough aerial photography demand in the world to support the hordes of nerds building copters. I personally think 3d printing is lame and I cant imagine a real use for it. Similarly, I can’t imagine a real use for quad copters, but fuck man, they are super fucking cool. And I don’t think I or anyone else can really articulate it any better.”—Charles Forman on flying robots
“Because to stand athwart history and cry “Stop” is never enough, something that the inheritors of William Buckley’s legacy have so obviously failed to learn. We’re going to continue tumbling forward, and if we have any hope of steering in the right direction, we need to know more than just why everything is so bad and awful and dangerous. We need to know what’s pushing us forward, what needs and desires we are trying to sate. There’s more going on here than the indulgence of a manipulated craving for snack food. We’re hungry for connection. We live for it.”—Dave Eggers to the Internet: Just stop! - Salon.com (via stml)
“Do What You Love is a nirvana state, an end goal, and output. It too simplistically describes the nuances, the ups and downs of life, the journey. It’s valid, sure, but maybe not helpful in the day to day.”—Andy Weissman: Andre Agassi, Do What You Love, Bob Dylan
…when MIT researchers spent an entire year following 2,600 employees, observing their social ties, even using mathematical formulas to analyze the size and scope of their address books and buddy lists, they found that the more socially connected the IBM employees were, the better they performed. They could even quantify the difference: On average, every e-mail contact was worth an added $948 in revenue.
The best predictor of team success is not smarts or effort — it’s how team members feel about one another.
“A 2010 Stanford University study, in which students came up with, and pitched, concepts that could form the basis of a movie, found the narcissists’ ideas were, on average, no better than anyone else’s. However, their in-person pitches were more persuasive, presumably because they believed in themselves so strongly. (It also found the presence of two narcissists in a collection of people boosted innovation, apparently because the competition between them set off creative sparks within the group.)
There’s no evidence at this point that narcissists are more creative than the rest of us. But there is evidence that they think they are, and that that belief drives them to try their hand at various creative pursuits.”—Study: Narcissism Breeds Belief in One’s Own Creativity (via buzz)
“Here’s the formula if you want to build a billion-dollar internet company," he said. "Take a human desire, preferably one that has been around for a really long time…identify that desire and use modern technology to take out steps.”—Evan Williams at XOXO as recorded by Ryan Tate for Wired UK
“If you study what the really big things on the internet are, you realise they are masters at making things fast and not making people think.”—Evan Williams at XOXO as recorded by Ryan Tate for Wired UK
This is how it should be… at least, how I like things to be. Is meeting with some other founder who’s just starting up who has nothing to offer me “work?” Well, it doesn’t pay the bills, but I learn from it, I make new connections, I enjoy it… It’s not “work” but it sure feels like something I should be doing.
On the flip-side, is my weekly digital sabbath and trip to the ocean “work?” Well, again, it doesn’t put money in my pocket, but it’s where I find my balance, my energy, my inspiration to keep me challenging myself at Shelby.
It all starts to change once you break down the walls of “work” vs. “life.” Just consider it all your “life’s work.” Or call it “art” like Seth Godin does…
“Art is not a gene or a specific talent. Art is an attitude, culturally driven and available to anyone who chooses to adopt it. Art isn’t something sold in a gallery or performed on a stage. Art is the unique work of a human being, work that touches another. Most painters, it turns out, aren’t artist at all — they’re safety-seeking copycats.”
Whatever you do, just don’t waste your time. As I heard recently, ‘Be phenomenal or be forgotten.’
“Creative people are ones who are willing and able to metaphorically buy low and sell high in the realm of ideas. Buying low means pursuing ideas that are unknown or out of favor, but that have growth potential. Often, when these ideas are first presented, they encounter resistance. The creative individual persists in the face of this resistance, and eventually sells high, moving on to the next new, or unpopular, idea. In other words, such an individual acquires the creativity habit.”—
“one thing I think happens is that it’s very easy to assume, with the benefit of hindsight, that this was all inevitable. But there are many times when you’re developing something that’s challenging or difficult, there are many times when you can basically sort of acquiesce and give up. And it takes a real—it takes a real focus and determination. I think that always happens when it’s shared. There are times when I think either one of us or members of the team can feel discouraged. So I think that’s one of the things that’s fantastic working in groups. When you really think this can’t be solved and perhaps we’ve got too ambitious here, it’s fantastic when you’ve got other people round you to keep you going.”—Jonathan Ive (via heif)
“I think the only metrics that should matter to a founder are the ability of an investor to empathize with them (especially when the going gets rough) and their ability to understand that startups are unpredictable. A really great investorknows that, and so should every founder. The bad investors are the polar opposite — just ask the folks behind the startups they backed in the past.”—Om Malik in a great post about the shift that is happening in the VC game
“In the grind of a startup, you’ll always need someone yesterday and it’s easy to hire someone that is not quite smart enough or a good enough culture fit because you really need a specific job done. Especially in the early days, never compromise. A single bad hire left unfixed for long can kill a company. It’s better to lose a deal or be late on a product or whatever than to hire someone mediocre. Great people attract other great people; as soon as you get a mediocre person in the building, this entire phenomenon can unwind.”—
“Being the one in control of what moves me, what I feel obligated by, and what attachments I have to fleeting experiences is not an authority that I’m willing to concede to the arbitrary whims of an app on my mobile phone. I think more and more people are going to retake this agency over their feelings about being social, as well. That’s a joyful thing.”—
The other day someone from a service that offers similar functionality signed up for SuperCalendar.
I still get an email every time someone signs up for our service, I usually quickly glance at rapportive and customize a welcome email.
I originally heard about his service from a potential customer who wanted to try out SuperCalendar without paying and pointed to them as an example of a company that offers their beta services for free.
In his case I said
PS I’ve heard good things about [your company] I look forward to seeing your progress.
Shortly thereafter I got notified that his account wasn’t complete so I sent a follow up email to schedule a phone call to update the rest of the info needed.
That 45 minute phone call took place earlier today.
We both shared how we came to where we are today and what we think about the space. [other folk are doing it wrong :)]
It was was great to hear that we think about the space similarly and are approaching the problem in a similar fashion.
We gave each other advice on things that we have learned because at the end of the day we are out to enable people.
I wished him well on the grind that is the startup and that I will be running in the race alongside him and look forward to seeing what happens.
The best thing about having worthy competitors is that they make YOU better. Make sure to seek them out and then run faster.
Both Nick and Jack asked me what my (morning) routine is now that I moved to LA Venice last week. The truth is I dont have one that I’m proud of just yet, since I’m still trying to get a lay of the land as well as meet potential hires. <— holler if u know people.
Here’s what it currently consists of:
Wake up when the sun decides to shine on my face, around 6:40ish
this is a lovely way to start the day but I kinda want to wake up earlier.
Drink a glass of water
Meditate by the side of my bed
have been struggling with focusing for longer than 3 uninterrupted breathes [goal is 10] and maintaining a complete session [ 20 minutes]
Have an avocado with sriracha for breakfast along with tea or a green juice
Open up laptop and fire up Sqwiggle to say hi to the team and start working.
Head to Lemonade for lunch around noon.
Things that I used to do that I miss
Early am bike rides
the cruiser I have here, doesnt cut it; need to get my bike shipped here
Have an office to go to
Things that I want to incorporate
Structured exercise class (spin,yoga,boxing etc)
Make green juice in the AM
I’ve been spending $12 every other day on Local 1205’s Seabed aka my favorite green juice in all the land (cucumber, celery, kale, spinach, parsley, lemon) and decided to order an Omega Juicer and try to recreate it to save $
“Write," is something I’m always telling people to do. "Every single day, just do it, like it’s your job." But this is never something I do myself. At least, not in public, where anything is at stake, so I’m going to do it now. Write, every day, for you, and for this I apologize in advance.”—