I am an unabashed fan of thoughtbot, and I have long felt like I'll have "made it" if I woke up one day and had an agency that was like theirs.
This podcast gave me the reassurance that I am on the right path.
If thoughtbot can make $20 million a year, then JMG can definitely get to $10 million.
There is one thing that you’re better at than other people: being you. This is the only game you can really win.
When you start with this mindset the world starts to look better again. No longer are you focused on where you stand relative to others. Instead, your focus and energy is placed on what you’re capable of now and how you can improve yourself.
Life becomes about being a better version of yourself. And when that happens, your effort and energy go toward upgrading your personal operating system every day, not worrying about what your coworkers are doing. You become happier, free from the shackles of false comparisons and focused on the present moment.
I think this blog is quickly turning into a spot where I can look when I need some internal motivation, and this is a perfect post for that future time.
This is a tremendous piece of reporting by Jody Rosen. I have never had many kind words for the big record labels, but this just takes my distain to a whole new level.
As mentioned in the article, I understand how costly it is to maintain an archive of content as large as this. It’s not economical, and it is likely never to be a profit center.
But one could argue that if your entire business model is to leech the intellectual property of artists, you would at least have a moral imperative to keep that IP in as pristine of a condition that you could.
Of course, though, we are talking about the music industry. Why do something altruistic and beneficial to society with the gobs and gobs of money they make when, instead, they can hire more lawyers?
Here’s a small list of artists mentioned in the article, just to leave you with a taste of what we, as a society, have collectively lost:
Virtually all of Buddy Holly’s masters were lost in the fire. Most of John Coltrane’s Impulse masters were lost, as were masters for treasured Impulse releases by Ellington, Count Basie, Coleman Hawkins, Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, Art Blakey, Sonny Rollins, Charles Mingus, Ornette Coleman, Alice Coltrane, Sun Ra, Albert Ayler, Pharoah Sanders and other jazz greats. Also apparently destroyed were the masters for dozens of canonical hit singles, including Bill Haley and His Comets’ “Rock Around the Clock,” Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats’ “Rocket 88,” Bo Diddley’s “Bo Diddley/I’m A Man,” Etta James’s “At Last,” the Kingsmen’s “Louie Louie” and the Impressions’ “People Get Ready.”
The list of destroyed single and album masters takes in titles by dozens of legendary artists, a genre-spanning who’s who of 20th- and 21st-century popular music. It includes recordings by Benny Goodman, Cab Calloway, the Andrews Sisters, the Ink Spots, the Mills Brothers, Lionel Hampton, Ray Charles, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Clara Ward, Sammy Davis Jr., Les Paul, Fats Domino, Big Mama Thornton, Burl Ives, the Weavers, Kitty Wells, Ernest Tubb, Lefty Frizzell, Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Bobby (Blue) Bland, B.B. King, Ike Turner, the Four Tops, Quincy Jones, Burt Bacharach, Joan Baez, Neil Diamond, Sonny and Cher, the Mamas and the Papas, Joni Mitchell, Captain Beefheart, Cat Stevens, the Carpenters, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Al Green, the Flying Burrito Brothers, Elton John, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Buffett, the Eagles, Don Henley, Aerosmith, Steely Dan, Iggy Pop, Rufus and Chaka Khan, Barry White, Patti LaBelle, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, the Police, Sting, George Strait, Steve Earle, R.E.M., Janet Jackson, Eric B. and Rakim, New Edition, Bobby Brown, Guns N’ Roses, Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, Sonic Youth, No Doubt, Nine Inch Nails, Snoop Dogg, Nirvana, Soundgarden, Hole, Beck, Sheryl Crow, Tupac Shakur, Eminem, 50 Cent and the Roots.
I've never heard any of DHH's RailsConf keynote speeches before, so I guess I kind of expected it to be more about the state of Rails and where things are going.
In a way, I suppose this is that. But really, it's a personal manifesto about the intrinsic value of software, human worth, and capitalism.
This was mind bending and well worth the watch.
The bittersweet consequence of YouTube’s incredible growth is that so many stories will be lost underneath all of the layers of new paint. This is why I wanted to tell the story of how, ten years ago, a small team of web developers conspired to kill IE6 from inside YouTube and got away with it.
As someone who got started developing websites on IE2, IE6 continues to haunt my nightmares to this day. This story made me feel some semblance of vengeance. Kudos to these unsung heroes of the internet.
“Everyone does it.”
These were the words from my college-aged daughter when I caught her lounging on our couch, streaming Friends with 24-point closed captioning on. She has no hearing impairment, and I wanted to know what she was up to.
Does “everyone” do it? My wife and I turned to Facebook and a private, nationwide group for parents with near-adult children. “Anyone else’s college student (without a hearing disability) watch TV with the closed captioning on and insist that everyone does it?” my wife posted. Seven hundred responses (and counting) later, we had our answer.
I remember when I got my first TV in my bedroom. I was in fifth grade, and for my birthday, I received a 19” tube TV.
After opening the box and plugging it in, I spent an hour reading the instruction manual, learning everything I possibly could about this amazing machine.
One thing that stood out to me was “closed captioning.” I had never heard of this before, so of course, I enabled it, then closed the menu to see what it did.
I was absolutely blown away. How was this TV able to understand the words that were spoken on the screen and type them out to read?
As I got older, I started to understand why this technology existed and how it actually worked. At the same time, I never turned off that setting on my tube TV.
My friends thought I was weird for having it on, but there was something about seeing the words along with hearing them that helped me process the information a little bit easier.
My wife and I now permanently have closed captions on our TVs. It really comes in handy as we watch Game of Thrones late at night, but even as we are binging The Office for the eightieth time, the captions only enhance the situation.
One thing I appreciate about captions are how different content providers approach them. Some caption the words verbatim, while some (especially, but not exclusively, live events) take liberties with the words they caption.
It’s interesting to see how they are able to take someone’s stream of consciousness from their head and summarize the essence of it for someone to read on one or two lines.
Anyway, I’m a huge fan of captions, and I appreciate the hard work that goes into generating them.
Curry’s popcorn devotion has grown so deep that over the past year he has proclaimed in multiple interviews that he maintained his own “power rankings” of the offerings at all 29 N.B.A. arenas. Asked by The New York Times earlier this season if he was prepared to officially compile a 1-to-29 ladder for publication, Curry not only agreed but also suggested scoring five factors on a scale of 1 to 5 to support the rankings: freshness, saltiness, crunchiness, butter and presentation.
Steph Curry is my kind of nerd.
I swear, this blog isn't just going to become a link to every single Tim Ferriss episode. The problem is that most of his recent interviews are too good not to share.
This particular interview with Shopify's Tobi Lütke is great for a few reasons, but here were my big takeaways:
- Life should be about going on a journey, surrounded by friends, doing hard things.
- It's critical to have a growth mindset. You should be able to be thrown into a job that you have no qualifications for, accept that it will be challenging, and ultimately figure out how to succeed.
- Failing at a project is very difficult if you optimize for two things: first, find the human relationship(s) in the project and aim to make them the best they can possibly be. Second, aim for proficiency in the underlying skill it takes to complete the task. If you make a solid relationship with someone and sharpen a dull skill, then the project isn't a failure in the grand scheme.
I came across this episode of The Knowledge Project the other day, and I instantly downloaded this episode with Jason Fried.
The more I read and listen to interviews with Jason and his co-founder, David Heinemeier Hansson, the more I want to model JMG after them.
Some takeaways from this episode:
- The businesses Jason admires are not big name ones that everyone has heard of (except for Stripe). He admires businesses who have been around for 5+ years, such as his local grocer.
- The expectation of himself is to do the right thing day after day. That’s an admirable goal, and one that makes more sense to me than straight up making billions of dollars.
- He said he tries to understand what “enough” is. That really is what owning a business should be about, right? If we have enough, then anything beyond that is greed, no?
- He spoke about how, at one point, Basecamp set numbers and metrics and then aimed to hit them. Ultimately, that led them to doing things that “weren’t them”, such as giving money to Facebook for ads. If your company is profitable and making you and your customers happy (again, returning to the “enough” point made above), why do we set pointless goals for ourselves? Can’t we find satisfaction in something more tangible (like how something feels) as opposed to hitting a made up number?
I would love JMG to be as “successful” of a company as Basecamp in every sense of the word. As our company grows and continues to find success, I am proud of our ability to stay true to our roots and build a business that does things the right way.
I read Good to Great a few years ago, but I admittedly never finished it. After hearing this interview though, you'd better believe I'm gonna go back and pour over it.
This interview with Jim Collins was absolutely awe-inspiring. Among the nuggets I took away from this episode:
You should strive to be a "Level 5 Leader", which means you are simultaneously headstrong and humble. You have to put your organization before any personal gain.
Jim organizes his time according to the 50/30/20 rule, which means he spends 50% of his time in a given 365 day period on creative activities, 30% of his time teaching, and 20% of his time on everything else.
On that same vein, Jim has a spreadsheet where he tracks how many hours a day he gets creative pursuits, and in any given 365 day period, he has to have over 1000 total hours. He also tracks what he did on a given day, as well as a rating from +2 to -2 for how he felt on that day. I've been trying to do something similar with tracking the big three things I need to get done each day, and I think I should expand that out a little bit to include these variables.
You should not do what you’re good at, but do what you’re coded for. This really struck a chord with me, because I think I'm pretty good at developing, but I'm pretty sure I'm coded to be a leader.
There was a lot mentioned around the flywheel principle, and I think this is something we're just starting to see happen with our own business pursuits.
There's a ton in this episode, so I'm going to stop writing in order to let you start listening.