Four short links: 29 Jan 2009

Luck, craft, coding, and strategy today on Four Short Links:

  1. Because — After a NZ big-money low-success e-tailer closed, there was widespread “ha! about time!” in the blogosphere. This post, by one of New Zealand’s most successful web entrepreneurs, is a fantastically humble reality check. “Build it and they won’t necessarily come, no matter how good you think it is and how much you try and tell them about it. Looking at a high profile failure, and thinking that you just need to do to the opposite to be successful can be quite misleading.”
  2. Ira Glass’s Manifesto — the man behind This American Life talks about the art and craft of creating great radio stories. I learned a lot from reading it, and not just about radio. “I’m not against manipulating feelings. The whole job is about manipulating feelings. If you don’t get in front of that and embrace it with a big bear hug, you’re not doing your job as a radio producer. You just don’t want to be all corny about it.” It’s the great lesson I’m still learning from Sara Winge at O’Reilly, that humans are built of emotions and stories and if we want to reach a human then we must speak with emotions and stories.
  3. Switching from scripting languages to Objective C and iPhone: useful libraries — Matt Biddulph notes some libraries that made his first Objective C programming easier.
  4. Three Freemium Strategies — I’ve been looking for an excuse to link to this blog, Startup Lessons Learned. It’s well-written and informative. “Strategy is all about what you’re not going to do; for a freemium business, it’s about which users you’re willing to turn away. Knowing which model you’re in can make these decisions a little less excruciating.”
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  • http://radar.oreilly.com Sara Winge

    Thanks for the shout out, Nat. I was converted to the belief that we’re wired to influence each other, so our task is not to avoid it but to do it consciously and for good, by dolphin trainer Karen Pryor’s wonderful book Don’t Shoot the Dog. Definitely worth a read.