8 Principles For Building Products People Want →
Mike Krieger’s Eight Principles Of Product Design: Draw On Previous Experience and Understanding – The biggest problem is startups in search of a problem. Chase what you’re passionate about; you’ll probably already have knowledge in the space. Have A Hypothesis About How You’re Different – Have a point of view about your startup. Why is there a special opportunity for this now? Never Build...
Stables and Volatiles →
This great post by Rands explains perfectly how messed up the media industry is. Read the following definitions: Stables are engineers who: Happily work with direction and appreciate that there appears to be a plan, as well as the calm predictability of a well-defined schedule. Play nice with others because they value an efficiently-run team. Calmly assess risk and carefully work to mitigate...
The Future of Mobile Devices and News Consumption
I really love this study by Pew on the state of mobile devices and news consumption. It crystalizes some things a lot of news organizations have ignored (or don’t realize, yet?) about the migration of users from desktop to mobile/tablet, and the effect it’ll have on their businesses. Consumers are engaging with news more often and on more devices. The landscape is becoming more...
Reaching the Startup Holy Grail: Product-Market... →
Some really, really solid stuff here, including lots of good links.
Why I think Apple is Building An Ad Hoc Social... →
I’ll be writing up all my thoughts on the topic, but here are some key takeaways to consider: Apple’s social service would no doubt give people the opportunity to establishing lasting connections, but the default will likely be to erase connections and dissolve the networks when everyone leaves. More importantly, Apple could achieve what Ping never could, which is to give people the means...
Crowd Patronage: How A 400 Year Old Model Can Save... →
I wrote about the scarcity problem with recorded music once before, and I think this article *nails* the future of the music industry: relationship access + ecosystem of fans + crowd patronage. Whether or not artists like it, the inherent value of a record’s property value was in the scarcity of its physical distribution (i.e. CDs, tapes, vinyl). This scarcity has been permanently destroyed in...
The DNA of Product Management →
1) Product managers wear three hats Congrats, as a product manager you get three jobs: a) Project manager: keep the wheels on the bus, the trains running on time and over-communicating about status, documentation, strategy, vision, etc b) Product manager: the actual feature and requirements spec’ing, working with your x-functional team to get things built and shipped c) CEO: the buck...
The 100% Easy-2-Read Standard →
Who said websites need to be crammed with stuff?
Mastering the art of disruptive innovation in... →
The value for news organizations now increasingly lies in providing context and verification—reporting the “how, why and what it means”—and facilitating communities around that news and information.
Amplification & the changing role of media →
With the rise of the social web, that has changed. Blogs, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other such platforms have made it easy for news makers to go direct to their constituents. So what is the role of today’s media person? In addition to reporting news, I think picking things to amplify is also important. Back in the day, news people made choice by deciding which stories to write....
How Apple Will Inadvertently Kill Pandora: The...
I’ve been thinking a lot about the rumors that Apple is going to create a Pandora-like streaming radio experience. I don’t think that’s the whole story. It obviously can’t be. Apple left an umbrella for streaming services, which explains why the Spotify’s, Pandora’s, iHeartRadio’s of the world have been able to creep in on Apple’s turf —...
The Best and Brightest Music Industry Minds on...
I’m incredibly excited to say that I was included on Hypebot’s list of top innovators, industry leaders, and all around resourceful people in the music industry and tech space who are worthy of following on Twitter! I put together a complete list (plus a few of my own suggestions!) of my favorite wonks in the music industry and technology space.
The Music Industry's Perception Problem
I stumbled into this article today by Steve Guttenberg where he suggests that music has become unimportant and simply a soundtrack to other activities. He blames everything from the “loudness wars” to mobile devices being a distraction to fewer records being made (!?) for music’s lack of importance today. He argues that artists aren’t making money the traditional because...
What social music really means
We like to talk about “social music” as it pertains to music shared with our friends across social networks. Spotify and Rdio’s integration into Facebook being the obvious example of social music. But, that’s not social music. Nor is Facebook’s “Listen with” feature. Even Turntable.fm for all its interestingness is close, but not an actual social...
Untangling the Culture of Distraction
Fantastic read by Joe Kraus on the culture of distraction we’ve created for ourselves with new technologies. Gaps used to happen all the time. Now they’re disappearing. You’re eating lunch with a friend and they excuse themselves to the restroom. A gap. Now, you pull our your phone because being unstimulated makes you feel anxious. Waiting time in a line at the bank? Used to be a gap....
Mary Meeker on the State of the Web →
This year, Mary Meeker brings her famous annual Internet Trends report to D10, where she just appeared onstage. Meeker, a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and former financial analyst, is describing what she calls “the re-imagination of nearly everything” powered by mobile and social, with a torrent of slides tracing what was then and what is now. For example: News outlets are...
Life Advice from Pete Rose
Be Aggressive Be More Aggressive Never Be Satisfied (via Here Now)
Avoiding Depression While Not Running a $1B... →
So good. smalldogsbigdogs: Instagram sells for $1B. Evernote is now valued at $1B. Pinterest at $1.5B. 3 month old companies coming out of YCombinator are getting investments based on $10M+ valuations. And today will be the Facebook IPO which will likely put a market cap on the company north of $100B.
SPIN Play for iPad Wins Digital Tablet App of the...
On Friday, the Society of Publication Designers honored SPIN Play for iPad with the tablet app of the year award at the 47th annual SPD’s. Marisa Gallagher, VP/ECD of CNN Mobile, said “SPIN got me back into wanting to listen to music.” For those keeping score at home, this is the fourth major award that SPIN Play has won. Previously, we’ve won awards and honors for being...
Best Media Links of the Week
Here’s the quick, weekly roundup of links you need to read. It’s interesting that this week all but one link centers around the evolution of digital publishers, from The Atlantic downplaying SEO, to audience development trumpeting content, to former Huffington Post members starting a new kind of journalism incubator. Go forth and create awesome! Why ‘The Atlantic’ No Longer Cares...
SPIN Play for iPad is a 2012 HOW Interactive...
We just won a 2012 HOW Interactive Design award for SPIN Play for iPad, which is a design competition that recognizes awesome interaction design, blog design, app design, and amazing interactive projects as well as inspiring website design. SPIN Play has previously won a 2011 Media Vanguard Award, as well as being inducted into the iTunes App Store iPad Hall of Fame. Wee!
John Cleese on Creativity
Weekend Tweet Link Roundup
The One Product That Makes Apple a Trillion-Dollar Company - “There’s a reason why crack and apps are the same price.” launch.co/blog/the-one-p… — Matt Kiser (@Matt_Kiser) April 30, 2012 “Data-powered intelligence simply makes the task of maximizing clicks more scalable and efficient” guardian.co.uk/media-network/… — Matt Kiser (@Matt_Kiser) April 29, 2012 The...
When smart people who care get frustrated, something is wrong.– (via Seth Godin)
Happiness, Productivity, and Effectiveness at Work
“You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers … If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” –Steve Jobs, 2005 One of my all-time favorite blog posts by Zen Habits is the post “The Five Things You Need to Know About Finding the Work You Love.” ...
The Blueprint: A Five-Point Plan for the Future of...
At SPIN, we believe that magazine-grade music journalism on the Web is the future of our business; premium content pays in other words. If that sounds scary in a world of Demand Media and SEO wizardry, just look at what Bill Simmons has done with Grantland. This post is inspired by a recent article in the Columbia Journalism Review about how the Huffington Post came to dominate the media...
Listen First, Read Second: SPIN.com's New...
Now you can listen to SPIN.com. Literally. I’m incredibly excited to announce that we just soft launched the new SPIN.com streaming audio player. It’s a persistent, “toolbar” that puts the music first, sitting at the very top of SPIN.com and allows you to literally flip your experience from a read-first to a listen-first one. Right now you’ll find a tightly...
Essential Reading: Music, Tech, & Media - 4/11/12
Five things you need to know today in the world of music, technology and media: Listen to over 7,000 SPIN.com album reviews with the Spotify Play Button 8 Traits Your digital Leader Must Have Resources for Entrepreneurial Journalists Are we losing our respect for music? New Media vs. Old: A False Dilemma Bonus: How We Will Read: Clay Shirky
Essential Reading: Music, Tech, & Media - 4/4/12
Five things you need to know today in the world of music, technology and media: It’s Not What You Sell, It’s What You Believe Can fashion save publishing (and vice versa)? Why digital-native media will (almost) always win Instapaper, Readability and monetizing other people’s content David Carr on curation, crowdsourcing, and the future of journalism
SPIN Play for iPad a Digital Ellies Finalist
The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) announced today that SPIN Play for iPad is a 2012 finalist for the National Magazine Awards for Digital Media! More than 270 publications entered the National Magazine Awards, and 90 industry leaders served as Digital Ellies judges. We’re nominated for best tablet edition, which honors magazine editions published on tablets and e-readers....
SPIN's New World
SPIN Media’s Creative Director takes you behind the scenes of the reimagining of a brand: Last April, the SPIN staff realized we were at a crossroads. With the current state of the publishing industry, we had two choices: 1) To continue to incrementally transition from the old model of a primary magazine and a secondary website; or 2) To completely re-think how a media company should...
Behind the SPIN Magazine Redesign
By changing the way it uses its media platforms, SPIN changed its strategy for how it presents music journalism. News, reviews, and playlists would be more relevant online, and long form essays with big art sequences could be more invigorating on paper. This strategy was the impetus for our redesign of SPIN magazine, and digital juggernaut Area 17’s redesign of the website, whom we...
Shots Fired: Exclusive First Look At SPIN's New...
Spin magazine is responding by shifting its focus online in a big way with a major redesign that literally puts the music first with a music player right at the top… …It is not trying to compete with streaming music services like Spotify, rather it is doing what magazines do best: offering an edited selection of articles and related music… …Spin is finally treating...
Feedback: SPIN’s Redesign and Why I Like It
I’m convinced it’s the first music magazine to finally get ahead of the curve, and it did so by embracing some things that would seem counterintuitive at first glance… While most Old Media monthlies have attempted to adapt to the New Media world by merely making smaller magazines and creating clumsy websites and/or iPad apps with the same content, SPIN deserves kudos for a creative,...
New-Look SPIN Magazine Feedback Roundup
SPIN subscribers started getting copies in the mail last week. The feedback’s been fantastic. Here’s some highlights from the press and fans: Adweek: ‘Spin’ to Roll Out Larger Format Magazine Folio: On the Revival of a Suffering Genre: the Music Magazine; SPIN’s new route. Billboard: ‘Spin’ to Roll Out Larger Format Magazine New York Times: Streaming...
Plug In Better
The Internet is an incurable condition — but we can’t recognize that as good news until we find a way to treat the various aches and pains of life online. (via The Atlantic) I once tried to tackle the subject of how to balance information overload and unplug from technology. It’s incredibly challenging. I like how the problem is reframed as not giving up on technology and...
The Cost of Living in the Cloud
Productivity / Business: iCloud: $20/year (10gb) Dropbox: $100/year (50gb) Evernote: $45/year CloudHQ: $49/year Basecamp (basic): $288/year Google Apps for Business: $50/user/year Arc : $29.99 + S3 bucket (.14/GB; $7mo for 50gb = $84/year) Dropbox and Evernote are a must. CloudHQ sync’s all my Google Apps and Basecamp docs as files to Dropbox. This is incredibly handy for having access...
Be a Triple-Threat
Great basketball players are a triple-threat: they can shoot, dribble, and pass. Great entrepreneurs are, too: They pull-up and take shots when the opponent presents an opportunity. They attack and take advantage of an opponent playing poor defense. And, they have the humility and wherewithal to pass the ball to a teammate in a better strategic position. Be a triple-threat as an entrepreneur....
What I've Learned About Smart People. →
tmac721: Smart people challenge everything. (You know who taught me that? A smart person.)
The Hacker Way
As part of building a strong company, we work hard at making Facebook the best place for great people to have a big impact on the world and learn from other great people. We have cultivated a unique culture and management approach that we call the Hacker Way. The word “hacker” has an unfairly negative connotation from being portrayed in the media as people who break into computers. In reality,...
For Users: Connect people. Discover and learn about the world. Enable self-expression. Control who sees that self-expression. Make it a ubiquitous experience. For Advertisers and Markets: Provide reach. Provide relevance. Provide context. Provide demonstrable engagement. *as summarized from Facebook’s S1 filing.
How to Silence Information Overload and Unplug...
I love technology. It’s an amazing tool. It contributes meaningfully to my life in many ways every single day. But it’s also a slippery slope. It’s easy to get trapped in it. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by it. And, it’s easy to give up on it. And that’s because… There Is Too Much Information The New York Times recently posted a story called the Joy...
If the 2011 San Francisco 49ers were in 'Friday...
Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose. Coach Taylor - Jim Harbaugh Tami Taylor - Sarah Harbaugh Matt Saracen - Alex Smith Julie Taylor - Elizabeth Smith Henry Saracen - Douglas D. Smith Landry Clarke - David Akers Smash Williams - Frank Gore Tim Riggins - Vernon Davis Voodoo Tatum - David Carr Jason Street - Steve Young (concussion; career ended) Lyla Garrity -...
Why the Stereogum Buzz Chart is Bullshit
Today, Stereogum launched their new Buzz Chart. I love the concept in theory (a lot!), but it’s not based in reality. It seems to be some sort of pseudo editor’s pick, not the “scientific and definitive list” they’re touting. They claim the rank of the story represents it’s “size,” whatever that means. One can only guess that the thumbs up/down...
When Good Technology Goes Bad
I really like my iPhone 4. It’s the first piece of technology I’ve owned that has truly enabled me to do everything I need (and want) to do. I’ve booked flights, video chatted with my mom, read books, watched live baseball and World Cup soccer, played graphic-rich games, found my way when lost, and generally become more productive because of my iPhone. It’s kind of funny...
How I Moved My Everything To The Cloud
I hate losing files. I also hate carrying around thumb drives and portable external hard drives. In an age when we’re able to blast humans into space for months at a time, it’s ridiculous to think we can’t keep a friggin’ file from going *poof*. I’ve been lugging a bajillion pound (fact.) Dell laptop around the past five years because I had no clear path to backing...
Why I Love foursquare (And How You Can Too)
I resisted foursquare for a long time. I didn’t really care about badges or mayorships. It didn’t strike me as a particularly interesting way to record the places you’d been, and it was too difficult to extract that info at a later time. There wasn’t a rich community of friends or conversation. The idea of getting deals, or specials, seemed neat, but it was still too...
SPIN Play for iPad Wins a 2011 Media Vanguard...
SPIN won a 2011 Media Vanguard Award for SPIN Play for iPad — the Apple iTunes Hall of Fame music app for iPad. The second annual MVAs — created to honor transformative, next-generation media — drew hundreds of entries from major media companies (broadcasters, newspapers, magazines and digital natives) and marketers (as part of our Marketer-as-Media Spotlight) during the...
Billboard FutureSound Reception (Backbeat Photo)