What if Google controlled your life. A great fiction piece by Cory Doctorow
[...] while a paid model might have been right in the past, having a larger, powerful and global owner changes the stakes considerably and allows the tremendous site to make bolder moves than ever before. Kara Swisher
Amazon Architecture over at High Scalability. Of note a few items for team building and team dynamics as well as product management:
- If you have a new business idea or problem you want to solve you form a team. Limit the team to 8-10 people because communication hard. They are called two pizza teams. The number of people you can feed off two pizzas.
- Teams are small. They are assigned authority and empowered to solve a problem as a service in anyway they see fit.
- Work From the Customer Backwards to Verify a New Service is Worth Doing
- Force developers to focus on value delivered to the customer instead of building technology first and then figuring how to use it.
- Start with a press release of what features the user will see and work backwards to check that you are building something valuable (This is brilliant!).
- Create a frugal culture.
- Involve everyone in making dog food.
- Look for three things in interviews: enthusiasm, creativity, competence. The single biggest predictor of success at Amazon.com was enthusiasm.
- Hire a Bob. Someone who knows their stuff, has incredible debugging skills and system knowledge, and most importantly, has the stones to tackle the worst high pressure problems imaginable by just leaping in.
If you have time, a word on scalabilty from Werner Vogels is a great read too.
[...] scalability cannot be an after-thought. It requires applications and platforms to be designed with scaling in mind, such that adding resources actually results in improving the performance or that if redundancy is introduced the system performance is not adversely affected.
A very silly report
on "fair use" gets caustic treatment over at Nick Carr’s blog Rough Type. No wonder.
The Computer & Communications Industry Association, a lobbying group for tech companies, has just issued a report called "Fair Use in the U.S. Economy." It purports to show that "the fair use economy" is larger than the "copyright economy." In 2006, the report declares, the fair use economy "accounted for $4.5 trillion in revenues and $2.2 billion in value added, roughly 16.2 percent of U.S. GDP. It employed more than 17 million people and supported a payroll of $1.2 trillion. It generated $194 billion in exports and rapid productivity growth."
…Even by the woeful standards of the bespoke research industry, this study is a crock.
but it brought a smile to my face. You should read it too!
Via Greg Wilson:
World-renowned activist and free software developer Dr. Richard Stallman, founder of the free software movement, will speak on “Copyright vs. Community in the Age of Computer Networks” in Matthews Auditorium, Room 137, Kaneff Center, University of Toronto, Mississauga, 3359 Mississauga Rd. N., on Thursday, July 5th at 5 pm.
I am fixing all my feeds problems. Oh my God! What the hell is going on! Best way to spend time at the LA lounge on the way back to TO on a red eye flight. I am still hoping to get an upgrade on this flight so that I can sleep before getting to the office upon landing. LA is just so so so big!
The first 3 days of my don’t spend a cent week have gone very well. No complaints. Have not spent a dime, not even for food. Chris Nolan would be proud! Now I thought it would be quite easy to do this but… I have a challenge: what to do about food this weekend? I mean this week was pretty ok. We usually have a weekly lunch in the office and I had a couple of business lunches/dinner which kind of took care of feeding me. But the weekend is coming up. Perhaps I am taking this "don’t spent a cent" too far. Chris, was it supposed to include not spending money on food as well?
Oh la la.
Now the worst part: I am dying for a coffee from Mercury Organic. I mean litteraly dying for it – understandable, they make the best espresso or americano in this town. This is nuts! This is what happens when you can’t have something. Perhaps someone will buy me a coffee? But that’s not right because they will be spending money. I should simply do without until next week. Voila.
See what you have done Chris!