Month: March 2008

How to get some action ;)

I was alone one night, in deep thought…

I was wondering what I would learn by going through a selection of 213 quotes on “action”.

The one thing I personally took away?

The need for consistency and continuous effort.

Not revolutionary, I know.

But it hints at me quite accurately, as I’ve spent the most part of life on “think smart” to the extent I’m relying less on “work hard”.

Looking ahead, for the ambitions I’ve chosen, I might have to do both.

Wild lions and the design of a new kind of company

As MindValley grows in new people and new ventures – how can we maximize happiness and profit?

Let’s tap the brain of a guy who funded 80 startups with a total of about 200 founders, with a pretty good hit rate (conception to acquisition / profitability).

resolveYes, it’s Paul Graham. One of my favorite brains to tap.

Read his essay “You weren’t meant to have a boss” as he talks about

  • Optimal group size for work
  • The way humans naturally work in groups
  • Struggles in designing a structure to avoid becoming a “big company”
  • Lions hunting in the wild

In the article, he ponders the same problems we are trying to solve….

“A large organization could only avoid slowing down if they avoided tree structure. And since human nature limits the size of group that can work together, the only way I can imagine  for larger groups to avoid tree structure would be to have no structure: to have each group actually be independent, and to work together the way components of a market economy do.

That might be worth exploring. I suspect there are already some highly partitionable businesses that lean this way. But I don’t know any technology companies that have done it.”

~ Paul Graham, from “You weren’t meant to have a boss”

Personally, I want to solve this problem. Not theoretically, but I want it to work in action. It’s a great problem to solve, as the solution (perhaps lessons other organizations and startups can use) will unlock a world of talent, innovation, and happiness at work.

Solving this might take some fancy experiments with organizational structure, radical thinking, consistent hard work, a bit of patience, and a group of people who dare… which is why I’m grateful to solve this with MindValley.

We’re doing some crazy stuff right now, but I’ll only talk about it when we have RESULTS. Till then, do share your workplace experiments and thoughts, if any.

(By the way, usually blog posts like this and this go on the MindValley blog, but to reflect how my so-called work and personal are in perfect harmony, I figured I’ll republish selected pieces about management, marketing, and designing optimal work/lifestyle here too.)

Life after an evening with Broken Social Scene

Have I raved about my evening with Broken Social Scene yet?

Huh?

You know, Broken Social Scene?

One of my favorite bands of all time?

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Going to see them live was the DIVINE PURPOSE of me driving all the way to Singapore.

And it paid off.

Also because there were some other tasty bits:

  • I found my other half!
    It is a bowl of beef noodles. Not the soup kind, or the “Famous” one near Alor… this is one has beefy gravy. I kept going for the same dish everywhere I went!
  • Reckless shopping
    I spent so much money I just want to forget about it. The result? See for yourself, this month, as I strut about town in radical fashion experiments!
  • Road trip games with music heads
    Stuff us into the same car? You get 4 hours of traveling through music history, pulling out the likes of Ini Kamoze and Engelbert Humperdinck, as we played tag team “spelling bee” with band / singer names.. Eg. The Strokes ends with an S, so you have to think of a band starting with the letter S, like Soundgarden. Which ends with N, so um, Nick Carter… I think you get it.
  • Immersion in hours and hours of damn good music
    What’s a road trip without good music? Thanks James for the compilations! All 300 songs!

And yeah…

The gig was hands down the best live concert (yet).

That’s kind of a big deal, considering I almost maybe slightly teared midway watching Radiohead in Sydney.

.. nobody cared about the seats any longer. Everybody was on their feet and screaming our heads off to every tune…

From someone else’s  detailed review of “An Evening With Broken Social Scene”

My favorite part was minute 4:25 of this video. Uploaded by ariddesert87.

(I’m referring to the electronica opening for Stars and Sons (orginal song here). Pardon the guerilla-quality capture, you had to be there!)

GAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH the gig was SO good.

I was standing and dancing and orgasm-ing for 95% of the gig (the other 5% was recuperating)

After all, it was no ordinary band.

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Broken Social Scene was there for me during one of the best times of my life (back in Sydney). Their songs were on replay for me for more than 6 months, and along with the Album Leaf, they inspired a few sketches of mine, too.

How nice of them to re-appear in my life, right now, to remind me what a wonderful adventure I’m on. (pic me and Kevin Drew)

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The random escape – a Sunday and Monday to Singapore and back… turned out to be the highlight of my year so far.

Special thanks to James, Mei, Kia Meng, and Broken Social Scene!

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(me, James, Brad Canning)

Chinese Farmer Grows Robots

I know, I know, first MC Hammer, now this.

No, I won’t be a source of offbeat news. This blog post is about finding your bliss.

Please watch this Chinese farmer grow robots for a living to see what I mean.

Look at that man.

And notice that

  • He found something he really enjoys doing
  • He is damn good at it
  • He gets a chance to do it very often
  • When he has an idea, he can instantly leap into the creation process…
  • He doesn’t give a nut (or bolt) about what other people think

I admire this man. I really do.

Aside from the fact he is also willing to burn his house (and his marriage) in pursuit of his passion, lets imagine if….

  • He gets paid boat loads of money to do what he loves.
  • His passion also provides something of immense value to the world

Now that’s a sweet deal.

And that’s where I’m headed! (or at least where I intent to head)

In the meantime, I get distracted.

I was building wax sculptures all morning, Friday. Not quite as cool as ghetto robots, but I’ll show you some pictures real soon…

MC Hammer Opens Largest Dance Floor on the Planet!

Was catching up on my TechCrunch when I came across the return of MC Hammer.

For those of you who grew up deaf and blind to top 40 hits, MC Hammer sang “Can’t Touch This” while using parachute-like pants to complement his revolutionary dance style.

Here’s a refresher course in Hammer-time.

But really now.

He has taken off his pants, and put on Silicon Valley khakis instead, teaming up with investors such as TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington.

For what?

The largest dance floor on the planet, that’s what!

DanceJam offers dance battles where users dance off against each other, with viewers voting on the best video. DanceJam also offers general dance videos, including locally uploaded content and videos from external sites such YouTube.

Should I post MY dance moves on DanceJam?

I’m not sure the world’s biggest dance floor may not be big enough for what’s in MY pants… but who knows.