Digging Your Own Hole

Last week was set aside to write my résumé. My first one in 7 years. For my first real job in 4 years. But my mind has been wandering willfully. Once I begin typing a work history I’ll have given up at last. This résumé has become the final comma in the run-on sentence that was my four years of self-employment.

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Creating moments for discovery

A few days ago, my friend Subi asked a question on Twitter which got me thinking. “Is creativity real or is everything just a modified copy of something else?” My response came almost immediately: “Creativity is being able to see the pieces of things out in the world and put them together in new/different ways.” I still believe what I said, but I have another theory which takes it a step further.

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Why I care about code

In my day-to-day work I make software. Generally I play the role of designer, sometimes I play the role of the developer, and occasionally I do both. But no matter what role I’m playing on a project, whether it’s my own, a collaboration, or for a client, the end result is always software made with code. And I believe that’s important to remember.

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Open For Business

Let's imagine for a second that you're opening up a new shop, a real one, in a physical location. Maybe you sell products (like stereo equipment or art), or maybe you sell a service (like haircuts or tax preparation). You're really good at what you do, and people always leave happy.

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Struggling To Not Give Up

In my blog post last week I mentioned that it seemed likely my full-time income beginning in February would be coming from Hermes (a match-making service for designers/developers looking for jobs in Chicago). As of yesterday, I'm a lot less certain about that. Actually... I'm almost entirely positive that it won't happen by February. And so I've found myself struggling to keep my head up, to keep looking forward.

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Reviewing 2014 / Planning for 2015

Who cares, right? Yet another retrospective about someone’s dumb year. And you’re right, this is probably worthless. But I learned a lot this past year, and I hope what I’ve experienced might help a few other people who are curious about what it’s like to try to build anything on their own.

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[Mocky] Email notifications, new dashboard design, and more

First, I want to say thank you! I launched Mocky three weeks ago, and it has been deeply satisfying to watch people use it to share their work with coworkers, clients, and friends. Even though the product is very young, the feedback customers have sent so far is very encouraging. There's a bright future for Mocky, and I'm glad you're giving me the chance to build it for you.

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Stranded in Montana

My front bicycle wheel was shaped like a Pringles chip. It was unfixable and completely useless. A local told us that the nearest bicycle shop was no closer than 125 miles away. Dehaan, my co-adventurer, sighed.

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Internet, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down

Like a death of the heart Jesus, where do I start? But you're still the one pool Where I'd happily drown LCD Soundsystem – New York, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down

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Why I'm Quitting My Job and Leaving San Francisco

Two weeks ago I gave notice to my job that I would be leaving at the end of the year. On January 5th, I am moving to Chicago to focus on my solo projects and freelancing.

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Stanley Kubrick held his own camera, so why shouldn't you?

Even though I've seen most of Stanley Kubrick's films and read a fair bit about him, I was surprised to recently discover that he always did the hand-held camerawork for his films. It was less a surprise to the extent that he, famously demanding and meticulous, had a specific vision which needed to be realized, but more-so a surprise that he would take on the task himself instead of delegating to his crew.

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On creating lasting value

Marco Arment wrote a short, but and interesting, post about creating lasting value through his lifetime. It is something we should all aspire to do. With my posts here I try to capture truths which I feel are not beholden to this moment, but can be referenced at any point in time and still be informative and valuable.

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Frivolous Experimentation

Why is it that in most instances we are our own biggest obstacle in the way of making progress? We tend to care only about big, world-changing, important problems. We talk about projects which we deem unimportant as if they are without merit. However, the solutions to important problems seldom have such ambitious beginnings. Instead, most important problems are solved by projects which had humble beginnings and only became important over time.

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Making Yourself Irrelevant

When I moved into my current role as a product manager at Twilio, I chose to focus on building internal tools for the company. The goal is to empower my coworkers with the tools and knowledge they need to build better products and provide better service to our customers. I believe strongly that companies should be cognizant of their limitations, and that they should provide themselves with the internal products to overcome those limitations.

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Being Human

In today's world, where we are hyper-connected to one another in more ways than ever, it seems that we often forget that humans are the primary consumers of the products and services that we all provide. We regularly release things to the world that we wouldn't recommend to our own friends, and provide service and support to other people in ways which we would be offended to receive. We are now equipped with more tools and knowledge to produce the best products ever possible, and provide the most human interactions ever possible, directly to people all over the world. So why don't we act like it?

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