Friday fun: Tesla insane button and software updates

I saw two fun things about Tesla this morning.

First the ‘Insane button’ video below. The Tesla P85D has a acceleration labelled ‘Insane’ (see here for picture) which initiates maximum acceleration from a standing start. For passengers it’s a hell of a ride, as you can see in the video. Stay with it until 2.45 and […]

Thoughts on agile management

Steve Denning, one of the leading business thinkers pushing the business world to abandon the outdated idea of maximising shareholder value has published an interesting article on Forbes titled Why do managers hate agile?

That immediately made me think of my first experiences with agile as a board member of software and web startups shifting […]

Two great rules for writing …. and life

I just read novelist Neil Gaiman’s Eight rules of writing. Numbers five and eight are priceless.

5. Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.

I love it! […]

Some advice on choosing great board members

There’s a good piece up on Forbes today which offers the following advice about choosing board members:

Look for integrity and communication skills Do due diligence, and then do some more Make sure they are committed Don’t expect everything from one person

That’s all good advice, and you can read the post for more […]

Computer-based personality judgments are more accurate than those made by humans

We’re walking personality machines but computers beat us at our own game

Michal Kosinski, Computer Science Professor at Stanford

Kosinski wrote these words in a paper which describes a study which found that computers processing Facebook likes are better at predicting personality than subjects’ colleagues, family, and sometimes even than the subjects themselves.

The study […]

How to speak so people will listen

I just watched a great Ted talk by Julian Treasure on how to speak so people will listen. It’s embedded below so you can watch the whole thing (highly recommended) but the takeaways so you can remember easily after watching are seven ‘deadly sins’ to avoid:

gossip judging negativity complaining excuses lying dogmatism

and for […]

Entrepreneurs are both born and made

Ursula le Guin’s writing on where writers get their ideas from throws light on the age old question of whether entrepreneurs are born or made. The short answer is a bit of both.

On the ‘secret’ of being a writer Le Guin says:

The “secret” is skill. If you haven’t learned how to do […]

Fear of failure – another unhelpful cognitive bias

Much is written about how the fear of failure is a strong disincentive to entrepreneurs here in the UK. Most of the explanations are societal – law punishes bankrupts more severely here than in the US and failure carries greater social stigma.

These explanations have always seemed a bit too simple to me, largely because some level […]

Messaging is the story of the 2010s

Everyone this morning is talking about the WhatsApp user data released yesterday, as per the chart above. And you can see why. Getting to 700m users is a phenomenal achievement and growing 75% YoY at that scale is the cherry on the icing on the cake. You can see why Facebook paid $19bn […]

Entrepreneurs: go deep, not broad

I just read Evan William’s post making the point that comparing different companies using a single metric (say unique visitors) is dangerous. He draws an analogy with rectangles, saying that anyone with half an education wouldn’t judge the size of a rectangle if they only knew the length of one side.

He then goes on to […]