ifindkarma. elegance is refusal.

June 20, 2011

11 Reasons Why Starting a Company is Hard …

In books we find we are not alone.
       ~ Carl Sagan
 

In stories we find we are not alone.
     ~ Jonathan Nelson

 

I’m giving a pariSoma talk to the Hackers and Founders Co-op Startup Class of 2011 tonight. And like Paul Graham, I found it helpful to write down what I’m going to say.

Like Evan Williams’ startup advice, I want to say something positive and useful.

My main message is that it’s important to have a network, because you can trade notes with other people who are doing similar things. This is why we started 106 Miles — so that any founder, engineer, or friend who joins us at our meetups will have a network to exchange knowledge and connections, and listen and learn.

That said, if I could tell entrepreneurs one more thing, I would say:

Being a first-time entrepreneur is hard.

Come to think of it, actually…

It’s hard starting a company even if you’ve done it before.

I’ve done it three times, and it’s still hard.

Off the top of my head here are 11 reasons why.

1. Having a great idea at the right time is hard. Big ideas are hard, and timing of ideas is hard. Being excellent is really hard but truly important, since nobody can steal an idea.

2. Designing an excellent and simple product is hard. User experience is hard to make excellent, and user interfaces are hard to make simple. Product-market fit is extremely hard.

3. Developing something people want is hard. Prototyping is hard, and iterating is hard. Minimum viable product definition is hard, and figuring out what people want is hard.

4. Getting traction is hard. Users are hard to satisfy. Attracting and retaining great users is hard, and attracting great content and quelling bad content is hard. Network effects are hard.

5. Keeping the damn thing up and running is hard. Technical operations are hard. “The Cloud” means some computer somewhere out there that you don’t control is going to go down at the worst possible moment.

6. Implementing a scalable business model is hard. Revenues are hard. Not all advice comes in three words. Although there is a lot of three-word startup advice, that matters not. Revenues require continual improvement of sales knowledge and the market, and that takes time, patience, and unbelievable tenaciousness.

7. Building a great team is hard. Finding a great co-founder is hard, and hiring is hard. Even if you read a lot about hiring, it’s hard. And sweet sassy molassy, managing people is hard. And being tough is very hard.

8. Raising seed money is hard. Angels are hard to understand. And finding a great fit between investor and entrepreneur is hard, very hard.

9. Raising venture capital is hard. Venture capitalists are hard to understand. Once upon a time you could
raise money with just a great idea. Then you needed a great idea and a great team. Then you needed a great idea, great team, and great prototype. Then you needed all those things and great traction. Now you also need a great business model, great revenues, great press, and if it’s not too much trouble, make the world a better place, too.

10. Turning away all the free advice is hard. People are unpredictable, and making decisions is hard. But it’s better to make any decision than no decision. Furthermore, the right people make all the difference in the world.

11. Managing your emotions is really fucking hard…      
Ben Horowitz said it best. Also, not quitting is quite hard.

If it were easy to start a company, everyone would do it.

But it’s not easy. And not everyone does it.

It’s hard. Really, really hard.

There’s a great analogy here: starting a company is like you’re 106 miles from Chicago, you have a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it’s dark, and you’re wearing sunglasses. Hit it!

Here are 11 things you can learn to navigate those rough waters, ripped lovingly from a long Quora answer I once wrote about mistakes entrepreneurs make. 

  1. Learn the difference between important and urgent.
  2. Learn the difference between working smart and working long.
  3. Learn the difference between an opportunity and a problem.
  4. Learn the difference between lucky and smart.
  5. Learn the difference between focus and activity.
  6. Learn the difference between publicity and reality.
  7. Learn the difference between prepared and over-prepared.
  8. Learn the difference between output and throughput.
  9. Learn the difference between managing up and managing down.
  10. Learn the difference between managing expectations and just riding the roller coaster unmanaged.
  11. Learn the difference between knowing the path and walking the path.


Remember, you can do it. But it’s hard:

Keep your eye on the ball,
Your head above the clouds,
Your ear to the ground,
Your shoulder to the wheel,
Your nose to the grindstone,
Your finger on the pulse,
Your feet on the ground, and
Your head on your shoulders.

Now… try to get something done. 

 

In summary: Activate your network, work smart, work hard, open yourself to opportunities, close off some opportunities, overcommunicate, underspend, hang in there, stop things that aren’t working, collaborate, and listen.

 

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June 12, 2011

Be excellent.

I want to be truly great.

I want to do something great.

So the question is, how do we become excellent?

 

You don’t become great by trying to be great. You become great by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard that you become great in the process. ~ xkcd 896

 

Interconnectedness takes me from that illustration, to a place that makes me want to watch a Tony Robbins video.

Tony says being great depends on tiny differences that put a person in a state of certainty, confidence, and flow.

 

To be excellent, we train ourselves emotionally. Get rituals.


Incantations, not affirmations, embody what we want.

Incantations help us navigate MUSTs vs SHOULDs.

 

As we move from within our own minds out to interactions with others, influence is essential.

Because when two people are having a conversation, the one who is more certain is going to influence the one who is less certain. Always.

 

This is why I’ve been thinking a lot about conversations lately.

And conversations are the foundation of 106 Miles.

106miles3

 

106 Miles recently had a conversation of greatness, which inspired me to find 11 great quotes…

11) “Greatness doesn’t take two months, or even a year. It takes years of focused practice to achieve even an ounce of it.” ~ Trizle

10) “Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason mastery demands all of a person.” ~ Albert Einstein

9) “On the road to great achievement, the late bloomer will resemble a failure.” ~ Malcolm Gladwell

8) “Success is moving from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.” ~ Winston Churchill

7) “Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” ~ Will Durant, not Aristotle

6) “Excellence is not a skill; it is an attitude.” ~ Ralph Marston

5) “You do not possess a natural gift for a certain job, because targeted natural gifts don’t exist. (Sorry, Warren Buffett.) You are not a born CEO or investor or chess grandmaster. You will achieve greatness only through an enormous amount of hard work over many years. And not just any hard work, but work of a particular type that’s demanding and painful.” ~ Geoffrey Colvin

4) “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

3) “Put your heart, mind, intellect and soul even to your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.” ~ Swami Sivananda

2) “It’s not what you take but what you leave behind that defines greatness.” ~ Edward Gardner

1) “It’s not where you take things from; it’s where you take them to.” ~ Jim Jarmusch

Now, I am incanting to take excellence to me.

 

Be_awesome

 

I want PandaWhale to be excellent.

I want 106 Miles to be excellent.

I want my favorite pizza place to be excellent, too. (This will take time. Right now, people hate us on Yelp.)

People_hate_us_on_yelp

And in my state of incantation, I include greatness.

As if I’m climbing the Ron Swanson pyramid of greatness.

Pyramid-jumbo

Be excellent to each other, and party on, dudes.

Don’t just be excellent. Be excellent to each other.

Be excellent. Go beyond a limit.

This takes my mind to an epic night. A really epic night.

190k_receipt_perezsolomon

After a party like that, it’s difficult to focus.

I want to hear Lady Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory“!!!

Sing it, Gaga!!!

I’m on the edge… of glory…
And I’m hanging on a moment of truth… 

And I’m dancing like no one’s watching!!!

Did YouTube invent Lady Gaga or vice versa?

No worries. Hakuna matata!! Or is that…

Hasa diga eebowai!!

Um.

Where was I?

Oh, right, dividing my attention.

Unlike attention, happiness is something that multiplies when it is divided. (Thank you, @aaker @padmasree @paulocoehlo!)

 

Now, where does motivation come from again?

Tony Robbins says understanding motivation is the key to happiness.

 

Daniel Pink says we are happiest and most motivated in our work when we have the opportunity for mastery.

Now, I’ve been told it takes 10,000 hours to master something.

That said, being good at something makes us like it more.

And there is much power in perseverance aka “grit”.

Thinking about all of this puts my mind into a state of flow.

Challenge_vs_skill

 

Which brings us back to where we started: xkcd 896.

Repeat after me: Do something so hard that you become great in the process.

 

March 11, 2011

Life is like business. It’s 20 percent what happens to you, and 80 percent how you respond.

That secret to life I tweeted from Daymond John on Shark Tank.

It reminded me that 80 percent of success is showing up.

And that happiness is correlated with success. Additionally…

 True happiness involves the pursuit of worthy goals,” Csikszentmihalyi said. “Without dreams, without risks, only a trivial semblance of living can be achieved.”

 

But how does a being discover worthy goals to pursue?

I have a vision

Worthy goals come from enlightenment.

Enlightenment comes from living.

Life itself is a process of continual improvement.

In 21 easy pieces. We begin each cycle by waking up.

1. Wake up.

2. Breathe.

3. Let go.

4. Get up.

5. Show up.

6. Position.

7. Include.

8. Be here now.

9. Be excellent.

10. Dance!

11. Give.

12. LOVE.

13. Reflect.

14. Empathize.

15. Encourage.

16. Be kind.

17. Connect.

18. Learn.

19. Simplify.

20. Nap.

21. Iterate.

 

At any point, be open to enlightenment

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See also:

 


(photo sourceKeira Susan Dazi!)

 

September 2, 2010

Searching YouTube from Android is like chugging an Ipecac Colada.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , — ifindkarma @ 5:12 pm

I currently wield an Evo, which is widely considered a great Android smartphone.

I'd LIKE to listen to "Fuck You" by Cee Lo Green??on my Evo so I pull up YouTube (which is owned by Google) on my Android (which is owned by Google) and do a Search (which is owned by Google).

And YouTube Android Search completely and utterly fails to find the song or video. Instead it gives me a lot of spam and a lot of junk that is not what I'm searching for.

So I'm going to have to embed the video below if I ever want to find it to play it on my mobile device in the future. This isn't??bad luck; this is FAIL.

Once more, with feeling: if searching Twitter is like drinking an ipecac martini, then searching YouTube from a mobile device is worse:

Searching YouTube from Android is like chugging an Ipecac Colada.

So without further ado, here's "Fuck You"…

And did I mention he released a second version?

And perhaps someday I'd like to play the 50 Cent freestyle

In any case, one thing is clear:

It's much easier to search my Posterous than YouTube or Twitter. Especially on a mobile device.

So in the future if I know I will want to find something on my iPad or other mobile device, I'm Posterous-ing it. Even if the content itself says, "Fuck You"…

And although there's pain in my chest, I still wish you the best, as I type in this Posterous from Gmail (which is owned by Google) from Chrome (which is owned by Google). Maybe I should let go and distract myself with a Game??and a deep, cleansing??breath??to move my mind to a kinder, gentler place where everybody is "Kung Fu Fighting"

Yes, that feels better. I'm connected to the now.

I close with a reading from The Book of Yishan, who says, "?????????: ???????????????!??It's like this y'all:"

This is ten percent luck, twenty percent skill
Fifteen percent concentrated power of will.

Five percent pleasure, fifty percent pain

And a hundred percent reason to remember the name.

Well said, sir. Well said. I ❤ my excellent attitude. Peace.

July 1, 2010

"iPhone 4 sucks as a phone. Evo is a great phone…" "I don’t care."

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — ifindkarma @ 6:31 pm
When Steve Jobs says “it’s just a phone” and AT&T still sucks (“the best engineering out of Cupertino won’t change that”), what is a poor consumer to do?

Oh, right, buy a phone that works instead. Like the 4G Evo from Sprint.
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Also,??iPhone 4 is NOT 4G. Evo is 4G. What’s the difference? The speed and quality of the Internet connection. Do not be fooled by iPhone 4’s name. IPHONE 4 IS NOT 4G.
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Repeat after me, “Fuck iPhone, I’m getting an Evo!
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Don’t be a consumer who doesn’t care…
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Let me say it again: iPhone 4??sucks as a phone.

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??Lawsuits!??Or you can??ruin the look with tape. Or??Livestrong.

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Or just shoot your iPhone 4??and get an Evo. You know you want to.
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I’ve had the pleasure of using an Evo for the last month — Evo and iPad, what a pair. This way I don’t have to miss out on the cool iPhone apps I like. I can even use my old iPhone in wifi mode with Evo as my Internet. It works great.
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Since I’m ranting, here are my five favorite things about Sprint’s HTC Evo phone:
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1. Evo’s phone works as a phone! Calls are crisp, visual voicemail is efficient, and Sprint doesn’t drop calls in the middle of Palo Alto.
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2. Wifi hotspot app and Internet service that is muuuuch faster than AT&T. I easily Internet-enable up to 8 laptops, iPads, iPod Touches and iPhones, Nintendo DS’s, and the devices of friends, wherever I am.
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3. The gorgeous, huge screen.??Size matters, and I love watching videos on it. I get a lot of use out of the kickstand.
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4. The camera. 8 megapixels, beautiful resolution, and fast. Also has videoconferencing built in, though no one I know uses it yet.
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5. Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Maps are fast and make me much more productive than I was on my iPhone. Google Maps has voice navigation, and it is fantastic. It could use better voice input, though. Google, are you listening?
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June 30, 2010

As human beings, our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

Oliver Goldsmith said that first, but every moment we get to put that attitude into practice, making it into a habit, by being excellent. As Ralph Marston said… 

Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude.

Everything is deeply interconnected. Aristotle (or Will Durant) has been oft-quoted, too…

We are what we repeatedly do.
Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.

Robert F. Kennedy had another variation on this theme, when RFK said,

Only those who dare to fail greatly
can ever achieve greatly.

In other words, a fall is not a fail… It is an opportunity to learn. We can remind ourselves of this by singing (or dancing to!) Chumbawumba’s “Tubthumping”, boldly declaring…

I get knocked down, but I get up again,
you’re never gonna keep me down…

“Tubthumping” is much catchier than Dwayne Wade’s “fall seven times, stand up eight” commercial, which repurposes an old martial arts line…

Knocked down seven times, get up eight!

 

…which simply takes us back to our daily reflection and incantation

Be excellent, for everything is about inclusion.

so get yourself some rituals

…don’t just be a cat in a box like all the other cats…

Cat_traps_are_working

…and practice inner peace, because in the end, only kindness matters

 Be kind, for everyone is fighting a hard battle.

June 18, 2010

Why being a Facebook whale is an EPIC FAIL.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — ifindkarma @ 6:49 pm

I love Facebook, but Facebook does not love me. Why? Because I am a Facebook whale. Allow me to explain…

A whale is someone who’s big.??(In??Ocean’s 13, for example,??the whale owned the air south of Beijing. Social gaming companies love whales.)

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On Facebook a whale is someone with 5000 “friends”, more or less. (A “Facebook friend” is a member of one’s “social graph“, and I traced the origin of the use of the word “whale” to refer to a heavy user of a social network back to??Friendster??in 2003-2004. I’m guessing “Facebook whale” came from former Friendster employee Nick Heyman when he moved to Facebook in 2005. By??2007,??Scoble??and??The Guardian??were talking publically about Facebook whales.)

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So… why does Facebook want to beach its whales?

In Facebook parlance: it’s complicated.

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Facebook does not allow its whales to have more than 5000 friends. For years Facebook has said??they want whales to have Facebook pages instead, because Facebook pages make them money. (For what it’s worth, I still think Facebook pages are ridiculous.)
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In any given day, a whale will lose several friends due to people quitting Facebook and people “unfriending” them, because Facebook users value “friends” less than a Whopper. Also, Facebook’s databases don’t stay synchronized so as a result if you keep reloading a whale’s page you’ll see different friend counts. This is how whales sometimes slip over 5000 friends occasionally.
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Once a whale hits 5000 “friends”, Facebook won’t let the whale add more friends until the whale loses some friends. Nonetheless, it is straightforward for anyone who so desires to become a Facebook whale. The more ambitious among us can do it??in a week.
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Facebook hates its whales. I’m not sure why. Possible explanations: whales stress Facebook’s technical architecture, whales detract from Facebook’s belief that you should only friend your friends, and whales cost Facebook a lot of money to serve because their demands are greater.

How do I know Facebook hates its whales? From talking with other whales. Sometimes Facebook randomly??accuses whales of being robots, and sometimes Facebook randomly disables accounts of whales, which is why??the 5000-friend limit causes anxiety??among whales.
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Nonetheless, it is likely??the 5000-friend limit has ripple effects.
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The benefit of being a Facebook whale is that whales always have someone interesting to talk with on Facebook. Since most of Facebook activity is about commenting on walls, links, and photos, the whales get the most serendipity when it comes to receiving feedback.
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The benefit to Facebook from having whales is that most Facebook activity involves a whale initiating, participating in, or spreading conversations on walls, links, and photos.
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However, there are many problems that come with being a Facebook whale. From my extensive use of Facebook on Chrome, Safari, IE, and Firefox, and via text messaging, as well as on iPhone, Android, and iPad, over many years, here are the top ten reasons by being a Facebook whale is an EPIC FAIL:
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10. Facebook does not stop people from sending me requests to be their friend, even though Facebook prevents me from accepting their request to be a friend.??What. The. Fuck???? In this way, the Facebook service embarrasses me many times a day, every day, because I have no good way to tell people that Facebook won’t let me be a friend. Rule number 1 of a social network: do not embarrass your users regularly. FAIL, Facebook, FAIL.
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9. Facebook does not let me “like” Facebook pages anymore because they’ve co-mingled the “social graph” and the “open graph”. So whenever I try to “like” a Facebook page, I get the message that I cannot “like” that thing because I have too many connections. In what social model does the number of “friends” one has limit the number of things one can “like”? Isn’t Facebook incentivized to collect “like” information from me, so they can make money selling me other things I might “like”? In short: Facebook is both hurting themselves because they cannot monetize me as well as they should, and also embarrassing me every day because Facebook forbids me from “liking” the good and good food??and??wonderful art and good food and??good wonderfully artistic food??of my friends! FAIL.
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8. Facebook has no migration path from profiles to pages.??How about a button I can press that automatically turns my Facebook profile into a Facebook page so I can take my friends with me? How about giving me all the functionality in my Facebook page that I enjoy in my Facebook profile? And while I’m ranting about this, let me add that it’s embarrassing to tell people they can’t “friend” me, they can only “like” me. FAIL.
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7. Facebook inbox rarely loads.??Maybe one in 10 times. I have to look in my gmail for Facebook messages, and usually I need to reply by email or text message, not Facebook. FAIL.
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6. Facebook iPhone app rarely loads.??It crashes often, hangs often, and photo uploading fails at least 80% of the time. This is one of the top reasons I ditched my iPhone??for an EVO. FAIL.
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5. Facebook invite widget crashes the browser. Which means I can no longer invite people to any Facebook events I set up. I have tested this with Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer, and Firefox — on Windows and Mac, on desktops and laptops and iPads. FAIL.
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4. Facebook events page rarely loads and the Facebook requests page rarely loads. As a result, I cannot see events I’m invited to, and I can’t see any requests from friends from applications, and I can’t see the add requests from new people. FAIL.
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3. Facebook’s text message interface regularly delivers responses to the wrong thread or wrong person, and sometimes delivers private messages to public places. Once again this embarrasses the living daylights out of me. Imagine my horror when the text message I sent in response to one status “Work that booty, George!!!” went to a friend who is a woman who is devoutly religious! Not to mention I have to explain to her who George is. Or explain to Catherine why a message to Heather ended up as a response to her thread. “Why are you calling me Heather???” I didn’t; I just texted a response, and Facebook delivered it improperly. Let me repeat that in capital letters. FACEBOOK DOESN’T KNOW HOW TO MAKE A MESSAGING SYSTEM THAT DELIVERS THE MESSAGE TO THE PERSON I INTENDED. IN 2010.??This texting snafu yesterday was a personal disaster: Private messages went public, and public messages went to the wrong people. And so yesterday I gave up. I stopped using the text message interface. And I’m really, really embarrassed by the whole situation, thereby violating rule number 1 of a social network. FAIL.
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2. It is impossible to keep track of the Facebook conversations I’ve participated in. I comment on a wall post, a link, or a photo, and then I have to pray that “Facebook notifications” tells me when someone has responded to it. Really? REALLY?? No. More often than not, the communication gets dropped in mid-conversation. Or I can sign up to get an email for every response. My “facebook” folder in gmail now has 24,000 unread messages in a year. TWENTY FOUR THOUSAND. Would a conversation console that is not just a lossy notifications panel really be a difficult thing to create, Facebook? FAIL.
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1.??Interesting conversations get buried.??If interesting conversations are impossible to keep track of and hard to find, Facebook remains??a superficial annoyance rather than a place for meaningful interactions that deepen the relationships we have with people we care about. And yet, because Facebook likes diluting its streams,??threads always get pushed down to the point where we can’t find them. Try to find a Facebook conversation you had 6 months ago. You can’t. I believe Facebook learned this bad behavior from Twitter, where any??gem??will also get quickly??buried. Searching Facebook for past conversations is like drinking the ipecac martini that is Twitter search. EPIC FAIL.
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I point out these ten items not out of hate, but out of love. I love Facebook, and I want to use Facebook more. I wish Facebook would love its whales, instead of making being a Facebook whale equate with EPIC FAIL.
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This post was humbly written by a panda and a whaleme.
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Will this post make a difference???We’ll see.

June 8, 2010

We believe in the interconnectedness of all things.

“We are feedback loops; we are the stories we tell ourselves…”
~ Doc Jensen on LOST  

“He who wonders discovers that this in itself is wonder…”
~ M.C. Escher

In the beginning, there was nothing but darkness. We all were one.

And then we said, “Oh haiLet there be light.

Cieling_cat_creates

And then we LOOK closer and more carefully. We could see that there was nothing. Which is a funny thing to say because sometimes words are inadequate, and sometimes words have two meanings.

And then expansion started… Wait!

And we added things. And the universe expanded. And we added more things. And the universe kept expanding to accommodate adding more things. And everything was awesome. Fundamentally.

It might seem like everything was added randomly. And perhaps that is the case. But that’s not what we believe.

We believe in the interconnectedness of all things.

This idea was kept in the dark for billions of years. Instead, the reigning belief was detachment: “I don’t really want to know how your garden grows, ’cause I just want to fly.” And so, we lived forever…

…and life was but a dream. Edgar Allan Poe waxed poetic, “All that we see or seem… is but a dream within a dream.” (Thanks Ankita!)

And we thought about the words of Rumi…

We come spinning out of nothingness, scattering stars like dust.

The wound is the place where the Light enters you.

The face of the unknown, hidden beyond the universe would appear on the mirror of your
perception.

They say there is a doorway from heart to heart, but what is the use of a door when there are no walls?

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there.

And the Primitive Radio Gods whispered quietly in the corner…

Am I alive, or thoughts that drift away?
Does summer come for everyone?
Can humans do what prophets say?
If I die before I learn to speak,
can money pay for all the days
I lived awake but half-asleep?

Suddenly we woke up with a kick. And we were no longer detached when we woke up with the idea. Not to spoil Inception, but merely to praise Inception:

What’s the most resilient parasite? An idea. A single idea from the human mind can build cities. An idea can transform the world and rewrite all the rules.

For our idea, Douglas Adams offered enlightenmentSpecifically, Dirk Gently illuminated us.

I’m very glad you asked me that, Mrs Rawlinson. The term `holistic’ refers to my conviction that what we are concerned with here is the fundamental interconnectedness of all things. I do not concern myself with such petty things as fingerprint powder, telltale pieces of pocket fluff and inane footprints. I see the solution to each problem as being detectable in the pattern and web of the whole. The connections between causes and effects are often much more subtle and complex than we with our rough and ready understanding of the physical world might naturally suppose, Mrs Rawlinson. Let me give you an example. If you go to an acupuncturist with toothache he sticks a needle instead into your thigh. Do you know why he does that, Mrs Rawlinson? No, neither do I, Mrs Rawlinson, but we intend to find out. A pleasure talking to you, Mrs Rawlinson. Goodbye. 
    — Douglas Adams, Dirk Gentley’s Holistic Detective Agency

And then Tim Berners-Lee — or was it Dan Connolly? — distilled the words to their essence:

We believe in the interconnectedness of all things.

And then Jamie Zawinski reflected on the Vannevar Bush-influenced words of Ted Nelson:

Intertwingularity is not generally acknowledged —
people keep pretending they can make things deeply hierarchical, categorizable and sequential when they can’t.

Everything is deeply intertwingled.

And then the Internet developed its own connective tissue. Which itself is unsearchable.

And then I couldn’t believe what happened next. Free association. Say what? We’ll see.

…continuing. LOOKWe didn’t start the fire. America, fuck yeah. Freedom isn’t freeTerrible Disney lessons. The virus of faith2000″ TVYou’re the man now, dawgBlue ball machine. Facebook is a lobster trap, and your friends are the baitTrue happiness comes from within. It comes back to you, you’re gonna get what you deserve… lovin’ is what I got, remember thatThe ride does not require an explanation, just occupants. Imitation of lifeNoah’s photosI’m expressin’ with my full capabilities, now I’m living in correctional facilities. Now let me welcome everybody to the wild wild west… California love… Regulators!!! I want it all: brand new socks and drawers. Why do I live this way? Heeeey, must be the moneyAlright stop, collaborate and listen. How can I find a woman like that? Guitar: impossibleFrench bulldogs. OMG pwnies. Ready, set, bagSpeak with meMeditate. Mediate. Kick. Things that make you go hmmmShow me how to dance. Alejandro. Ra ra ra ah ah ah roma ro ma ma gaga ooh la la. Cameron Diaz dancesStephen Hawking rocks. Time travel is horrifyingOuter space sucksCrumbling cities. Pink housesIconic bras. Mad menAh, l’amourDisney perversionsEpisode 200. And 201. FreedomUnconscious trumps free will. Disney deathsSerial killers. Corporate slogans. At-atCanned unicorn meatWhat if you’re wrong? The purpose of purposeThe empathetic civilizationEmma BatesQualia. Reid HoffmanHegel’s philosophy of history. The unexplainable. Time-traveling brandy thievesLife on Mars. LOST. The Little Prince.

I love The Little Prince. Whi
ch reminds me of some of my favorite words that Robbye Bentley has posted recently

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness because it shows me the stars.” ~ Og Mandino

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Life and Jah are one in the same. Jah is the gift of existence. I am in some way eternal, I will never be duplicated. The singularity of every man and woman is Jah’s gift. What we struggle to make of it is our sole gift to Jah. The process of what that struggle becomes, in time, the Truth.” ~ Bob Marley

“We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey.” ~ Stephen Covey

Thank you, Robbye. I have some favorites of my own, too.

The words of Rumi echo in eternity, “The face of the unknown, hidden beyond the universe would appear on the mirror of your perception.”

Which takes me full circle…

Three things in human life are important: The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.” ~ Henry James

Truth is, everybody is going to hurt you; you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for” ~ Bob Marley

I believe that everything happens for a reason. People change so that you can learn to let go, things go wrong so that you appreciate them when they’re right. You believe lies so you eventually learn to trust no one but yourself, and sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together.” ~ Marilyn Monroe

If success or failure of the planet and of human beings depended on how I am and what I do… How would I be? What would I do?” ~ R. Buckminster Fuller

We are all connected to each other, in a circle, in a hoop that never ends. How high can the sycamore grow? If you cut it down, then you’ll never know…” ~ Colors of the Wind

And Scott Adams said, “The best you can hope for in this life is that your delusions are benign and your compulsions have utility.”

So it goes…

 

And then a lot of peoples’ brains exploded. Such is rock n roll.

And then we rested. Or at least, we tried to relax and breathe and reflect

And appreciate that nothing can ever be truly, fully understood. Seriously.

Still, three fundamental questions remain:
  1. If everything is everythang, are being and becoming just limited beings’ perspective of the oneness?
  2. If happiness is part of the oneness, why is it so difficult to be here now and connect to that happiness?
  3. If lessons are repeated until they are learned, is learning just finding the right connection to the oneness?

And are there things we can never learn? We’ll see.

If some connections cannot be made, perhaps there is no spoon at all.

If Internet is the substrate for interconnectedness of all things, perhaps The Architect knows.

And are there things that cannot be taught? Richard Feynman refuses to explain how magnets work. Feynman concludesI really can’t do a good job, any job, of explaining magnetic force in terms of something else you’re more familiar with, because I don’t understand it in terms of anything else you’re more familiar with.

Breathing is neither learned nor taught. It just is. And yet sometimes we must remember to breathe. And to be here now. And to be grateful for every breath.

And then when that gratitude gets us reflecting about the meaning of life, we learn to let it go; this too shall pass

It’s one who won’t be taken, that cannot seem to give, and the soul afraid of dying that never learns to live, sang Bette Midler.

So it goes.

Savor every second; enjoy every sandwich, as the dying Warren Zevon put it.

So it goes.

You need to live before you die, said Steve Jobs…

You can’t connect the dots looking forward. You can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have
to trust in something, your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path, and that will make all the difference.

So it goes…

It is through death, too, that we make a connection with Randy PauschCon te partiro.

In the end, there is no greater job than enabling the childhood dreams of others.

And in the end, everything will be okay. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.

And in the end, only kindness matters.

So we dance. And LOOK. And simplify. And reflect. And breathe.

Which takes us back to the beginning.

And then… Bazinga!

May 17, 2010

Fuck iPhone. I’m gettin’ an Evo!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — ifindkarma @ 7:16 pm
Evo will be the greatest phone in 2010. It’s great for phone calls and Gmail and texting and watching high-definition videos and surfing the Internet, and has a pair of incredible cameras for photos/video, a blazingly fast processor, a freakin’ sweet way to play videos from the Internet on your television, a kickstand,??20k applications, and a mobile wifi hotspot application that will let me connect up to eight laptops and devices to the Internet through wifi. It’s the phone that I have been waiting for.
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My bad romance with iPhone ends with me giving up on iPhone??and asking myself, Will it blend?
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So on June 4, I will end my AT&T contract and make the Evo my primary phone.
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However, I’m not a fan of the Sprint marketing for Evo: America’s First 4G Phone.
??
BORING.??Sounds like something that makes Ke$ha say Blah blah blah. Well guess what AT&T? The fools in town are on our side. And we’re writing marketing copy!
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My proposal for the new Sprint marketing slogan substitutes subtlety for in-your-face attitude.
??
??
It’s short, bold, and to the point. Evo shall set us free from the shackles of AT&T.
??
??
Don’t be jealous. Ok, be just a little bit jealous.
??
??
Evo. Anything less is Blah Blah Blah.

Evo. End your Bad Romance with iPhone.
??
iPhone, I don’t wanna be friends! You are an AppHole. Buh-bye!

May 5, 2010

Top 5 Reasons Why I’m Moving Off iPhone.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — ifindkarma @ 9:31 pm

Two weeks later I am *still* trying to get my iPhone working again. The Genius Bar did not appreciate my calling the neverending iPhone reboot cycle??The White Apple of Death.

The folks at the Genius Bar told me — and I quote — “solar rays” have corrupted my iPhone’s OS install so kiss all my data since the last sync goodbye and reinstall everything from scratch. REALLY?! That “data” would be all the photos from the second half of my road trip. Yes, data loss still freaks me out.

Soon I will do an iPhone factory re-install and post details of our On the 10s Tour of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, without my photos. Luckily Joyce uploaded some to Flickr.

So here are the top five reasons why I’m moving off iPhone as soon as Sprint makes the HTC Evo available. People have asked me why it’s not a top ten list, and then answer is that AT&T only deserves half a list:

5. Random iPhone crashes that have now happened a half dozen times that lose photos of once-in-a-lifetime phenomena such as a road trip.

4. Facebook iPhone app crashes often, hangs often, and photo uploading fails 80% of the time. At least.

3. Camera is slow and takes fuzzy photos, and the iPhone Photo app doesn’t let me make albums or move photos around. Useless!

2. Apple doesn’t seem to want to spend its time making its phone a better PHONE.

As Jon Stewart says, “If you want to break down someone’s door, why don’t you start with AT&T? They make your amazing phone unusable as a PHONE!”

1. So let’s start with AT&T.??iPhone forces you to use AT&T, which drops phone and Internet service often??– frequently enough to be maddening and craps out on Maps at precisely the wrong navigational moment.??

In short: iPhone sucks as a phone, and it sucks as a camera, too. And if I don’t need those things, and I still want the apps, the iPod Touch (or iPad!) is better. And then get a phone that works well as a phone (and as a camera!).

Fuck iPhone, I’m gettin’ an Evo!

??

Meanwhile, enjoy Joyce’s??fail whale??and breathe in a zen-like fashion…

Lesson learned yet again: never put anything important on iPhone, never take important photos with iPhone, and upload any photos I care about to Flickr immediately because Facebook is no help whatsoever. Thanks for the FAIL, iPhone + Facebook + AT&T!

March 9, 2010

Love is when you open your heart to pain.

Today I asked Joyce what love is.

She thought, and said,

Love is when you open your heart to pain.
The more love, the more open you have to be.
There’s no way to preserve yourself, detach yourself,
observe yourself, catch yourself.

Alicia Keys sings about this kind of love…

This love is more important than any money.

Then Joyce thought some more, and said,

“Middle age is suspecting the happiest day of your life lies in the past.
Old age is knowing it does.
REALLY old age is also knowing your saddest day lies in the past.”

That makes me think of Paulo Coelho, who wrote,

but it always takes us somewhere.”

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