“What is it about independent bookstores that is so delightful? First and foremost, it’s the people. These are book lovers who know their stuff. I trust them. Secondly, you know that you’re supporting a local business and a beloved community institution. Sure, I can save a few bucks elsewhere, but these are bookstores that were built from the ground up with inventory carefully managed and curated by human beings. My cash contribution makes a material contribution to the lives of these people, and the people and families they support. The last point is — well, ironically, for a big fan of the written word — hard to put into words. It’s just magic. When you walk into an independent bookstore, it feels like the madness of our modern world screeches to a halt. Time stands still, and all of a sudden, it’s just me … and the books … and all of the amazing adventures and stories that they represent. The possibilities are endless.”—I love where Leonard and the Livrada team are going with their new product: e-book gift cards for indie bookstores: Magic in a Bookstore
Early next year I will be giving a talk on the challenges and opportunities arising from the current transformation of economy and society by technology and technology enabled globalization. I am rapidly realizing though that I don’t have nearly enough time to chase down all the primary research…
At Lerer Ventures I created the first version of The Guide to NYC Tech after dozens of people asked me the same dozen questions, over and over. What are the best co-working spaces? Which lawyer should I hire? Where are good places to take a meeting? Who are the key investors to know? How do I…
I’ll also share some stories and lessons from the past few years, so if you or someone you love is interested in startups + VC, the design of social systems, design education, or independent film/music, etc., I hope you’ll drop by and join us. It’s going to be a lot of fun.
We’re almost half full already, and from the RSVPs it looks like there will be a lot of great people in the room.
This week I had a guest (customer) come through my line with $400 worth of Christmas toys. The guest told me if we would match the best price the Red Laser App was finding she would buy with with us. I thought, no problem Target gives the cashier a lot of latitude to make the guest happy, so I agreed.
The guest was saving $20-$30 an item. 3 other guests overheard this and immediately downloaded the app.
Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday 2013 saw record online sales. iOS-based devices drove more than $543 million dollars in online sales, with iPad taking a 77% share. Android-based devices were responsible for $148 million in online sales, a 4.9% share of mobile driven online sales.
On Thanksgiving 2013, iOS ended up accounting for over 21% of all sales, and $121.61 per order. Android accounted for only 4.6% of sales.
Since Nick and the USV team open sourced the conversations app, I’ve been pitching in a little here and there. The initial work was focused on cleaning up the initial code base and fixing various bugs (many of which I actually introduced in my ‘clean up’ work).
We believe we are ‘mostly’…
Huge huge props to Kevin (aka falicon) for the amazing work he’s done on the new usv.com (aka “The Conversation”)
When his post on how iDoneThis reached $1,000 in recurring revenue struck a chord with readers, Walter thought it would be enlightening to talk with other entrepreneurs about their own such journeys. One of the most interesting stories he heard was from Adam Rotman, creator of Share As…
“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”—
“The point of work should not be just to provide the material goods we need to survive. Since work typically takes the largest part of our time, it should also be an important part of what gives our life meaning. Our economic system works well for those who find meaning in economic competition and the material rewards it brings. To a lesser but still significant extent, our system provides meaningful work in service professions (like health and social work) for those fulfilled by helping people in great need. But for those with humanistic and artistic life interests, our economic system has almost nothing to offer.”—The Real Humanities Crisis - NYTimes.com (via mikerugnetta)
“Look, without our stories, without the true nature and reality of who we are as People of Color, nothing about fanboy or fangirl culture would make sense. What I mean by that is: if it wasn’t for race, X-Men doesn’t sense. If it wasn’t for the history of breeding human beings in the New World through chattel slavery, Dune doesn’t make sense. If it wasn’t for the history of colonialism and imperialism, Star Wars doesn’t make sense. If it wasn’t for the extermination of so many Indigenous First Nations, most of what we call science fiction’s contact stories doesn’t make sense. Without us as the secret sauce, none of this works, and it is about time that we understood that we are the Force that holds the Star Wars universe together. We’re the Prime Directive that makes Star Trek possible, yeah. In the Green Lantern Corps, we are the oath. We are all of these things—erased, and yet without us—we are essential.”—
In the end, DiCola realized that the ‘artist’ is actually an incredibly complicated beast, and tough to reduce into averages and sweeping generalities. Radical differences not only exist between genres, but different levels of success within those genres. But the broader point may be that current copyright debates frequently have nothing to do with the artist at all, and almost everything to do with the companies surrounding the artist – record label, publisher, estate, or lawyer. “There are huge amounts of money involved on both sides of this fight, extremely little of it earmarked for artists,” Zoe Keating once told Digital Music News.
“The big question that I posed to the group was about Regulation 2.0. The idea that, given the huge volume of real-time data produced by modern web services and the potential for radical transparency based on that, there is an opportunity to explore completely new regulatory approaches. Approaches that, rather than make up-front decisions about an activity (say, ride-sharing or peer-to-peer apartment renting), as we do in a “1.0” regulatory regime, we can instead be more permissive on the front-end, while at the same time introducing increased accountability through transparency. If this kind of approach worked, it would theoretically be simpler and cheaper to operate, while at the same time allowing for more new kinds of activities to be explored without fear of regulatory shut-down.”—Nick Grossman’s Slow Hunch: The Regulation 2.0 Challenge
As I mentioned in my note turned in when this paper was intended to be submitted, I have been very busy starting a company from the website I showed you in class. I am taking trips up to New York more than twice a week; sleeping over friends houses or offices where hacakthons are thrown.
Also note, because my final project proposal has changed so drastically from the beginning of the course, I have included a cover page with an updated proposal to provide context for articles relating to my proposal. Some of the articles I’ve read in Business Week have proven to be invaluable to me during this time. One article in particular got me very excited as it validates our business plan.
Although I have been slacking in class, I have been gaining real world entrepreneurship experience.
Best, Ian Jennings Jablonowski
Thanks for cutting me some slack a couple years ago.
The company I mentioned above sold to Intel today.
You look for people that are not political. People that are not bureaucrats. People that can privately celebrate the achievement, but not care if their name that is in the one in the lights. There are greater reasons to do things.
You look for wicked smart people. You look for people who…
I’ve spent the past 6ish months building an Android app with Matt. The first version’s out in the wild, and it seemed about time to write up a few things we’ve learned … and, of course, weigh in on the never-ending Android-versus-iPhone debate.
“When I used to be on ESPN, very often. That I looked tired was a common refrain, or that I have a fat face, what I was wearing, etc. … Sometimes it was about how hot I am and will I accept their marriage proposal? And then, of course, the more vile comments, which are always plus-plus. I’ve been called a c—- more times than I can count, had myriad death threats, and been told that the only reason I have my job is because I’m either a.) sleeping with all the athletes, or b.) sleeping with my (presumed) male bosses. I once had someone threaten to mace me outside my apartment building in New York City. ESPN security (which is rarely heralded but so invaluable to its employees and especially its talent) worked with me at the time, and hearing some of the stuff they had to protect against was awful. I’m just a white woman who hears it, but that’s nothing compared to the black women in our business. From what I’ve been told and have seen anecdotally, the misogyny plus the racism they endure is awful. Easy from my privileged perch to say this, but I’ve got it easy.”—Amy K. Nelson, How often do you get tweets related to your appearance, gender or race (or all of the above) and what impact do they have? (via seriouslyamerica)
Loving your work on B/S. The first arc was fantastic. While I'm a long time Batman reader, I have only regularly read Grant Morrison's Action Comics when it comes to Superman. Your Superman in B/S reads like an extension of Grant's work, so I definitely wanted to check out your AC run. I find that Superman is a richer character when his social crusading is brought to the forefront. Are you going to feature this aspect of his character more in your run? The immigrants line was fantastic btw!
Thanks for the note! My take is that from the moment he discovered how different he was, Clark grew up as an outsider, an other. So he totally understands what it means to be persecuted or ostracized or excluded. And he will always stick up for the underdog. That’s a big part of what makes Superman who he is, I think. He never punches down.
“But the 8-hour workday is too profitable for big business, not because of the amount of work people get done in eight hours (the average office worker gets less than three hours of actual work done in 8 hours) but because it makes for such a purchase-happy public. Keeping free time scarce means people pay a lot more for convenience, gratification, and any other relief they can buy. It keeps them watching television, and its commercials. It keeps them unambitious outside of work.
We’ve been led into a culture that has been engineered to leave us tired, hungry for indulgence, willing to pay a lot for convenience and entertainment, and most importantly, vaguely dissatisfied with our lives so that we continue wanting things we don’t have. We buy so much because it always seems like something is still missing.”—Your Lifestyle Has Already Been Designed (via felicefawn)