133: You Have to Walk the Dog02 Sep 2015
Amazon and tech workaholism, Apple’s recent changes in judgment, Force Touch, and the iPod Hi-Fi.
- Why not use push notifications for the iPhone 6 Plus iSight replacement program
- Apple, attitude, "cool", and change
- Force Touch and Taptic Engine in the iPhone 6S
- New York Times on Amazon's stressful culture
- Jeff Bezos' rebuttal
- Ballmer Peak
- Creativity, Inc.
- Dustin Moskovitz on 40-hour work weeks
- Work-life balance and workaholism
- What's necessary for a successful startup?
- John's well-honed capacity for doing nothing
- Addiction to coffee and large monitors
- Follow-up on Casey's computer options
- Warby Parker: Boutique-quality, vintage-inspired eyewear at a revolutionary price.
- Harry's: An exceptional shave at a fraction of the price. Use code ATP for $5 off your first purchase.
- Hover: The best way to buy and manage domain names. Use coupon code UNEVENTFULWEEK for 10% off your first purchase.
- iPhone 6 Plus camera replacement
- Cracks in the foundation
- Sponsor: Harry’s
- More Force Touch speculation
- Sponsor: Warby Parker
- Tech-startup workaholism
- Sponsor: Hover
- Workaholism reprise
- Post-show: Vacation
- Post-show: Casey’s Macs
⏹️ ▶️ John You’ve been led astray. I gave you a good YouTube starting point and you quickly found…
⏹️ ▶️ John You quickly found that. How many clicks did it take you
⏹️ ▶️ John to get to that? Actually this is Facebook, but… Oh, that you started off at the bottom.
iPhone 6 Plus camera replacement
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Do we have follow up this week?
⏹️ ▶️ John I put in the link here and how to pronounce this person’s name and I realize I
⏹️ ▶️ John haven’t followed the link.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Would you like a moment? Would you like me to stall for you for a moment?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco second. So John, you didn’t do your homework?
⏹️ ▶️ John No, I did. It’s open in a tab right there. I wasn’t doing it didn’t help. Oh,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so it was lost. It was lost amongst your tabs wasn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John lost. It was right next to the ATP tab.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco He knew exactly where it was
⏹️ ▶️ John the whole time. Yep, totally. That’s right. I just didn’t actually click on it. The
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey keyboard, you can’t just
⏹️ ▶️ John open the tab, you have to actually go to the thing and play it. Anyway, this feedback is from Urqa according to
⏹️ ▶️ John Google Translate, which I’m assured is accurate in this case. Regarding
⏹️ ▶️ John the iSight replacement for the iPhone 6 Plus, like the problems that it’s having, you can get it replaced
⏹️ ▶️ John under warranty or whatever. This question is, is there a reason Apple can’t just send a notification to the affected
⏹️ ▶️ John devices? Why do we have to go to to like a web form and enter your serial number to find out if your device is the one that has the
⏹️ ▶️ John type of problem. And I thought that was an interesting question
⏹️ ▶️ John because there are two aspects of it. One is the technical, could Apple even do that? And second
⏹️ ▶️ John is the privacy related one, would Apple actually want to do that? Technically
⏹️ ▶️ John speaking I think Apple could do that. Surely
⏹️ ▶️ John there are there is software running on iPhones that has access to the serial number information
⏹️ ▶️ John like Apple software even if you know third-party apps don’t apples you know makes the OS so they could get that information
⏹️ ▶️ John but they would have to build that into the OS where like periodically it phones home and says are there
⏹️ ▶️ John any relevant recalls or updates for this thing if so blah blah blah and the privacy
⏹️ ▶️ John aspect one is does Apple know that phone serial number XYZ
⏹️ ▶️ John belongs to an individual person? I’m not… I suppose they do because you’ve
⏹️ ▶️ John got the what do you call it find my iPhone type thing but I’m not sure what Apple does with that information
⏹️ ▶️ John so my answer to this feedback is they probably could and
⏹️ ▶️ John I would imagine the reason they don’t is that they don’t have the code
⏹️ ▶️ John for that built-in and it’s probably like a low priority since these recalls don’t happen that often and building it
⏹️ ▶️ John in is just like that that whole mechanism seems like it has the potential to be
⏹️ ▶️ John difficult to implement in a way that doesn’t expose more information about a person
⏹️ ▶️ John to, uh, to Apple because Apple generally doesn’t want to know, wants to know as little about you as
⏹️ ▶️ John possible. Uh, and potentially to other things, they’re going to exploit whatever hole this
⏹️ ▶️ John pokes in a thing that, that periodically pulls some location and uploads
⏹️ ▶️ John information about your phone to it. So I don’t know, you guys have thoughts on that?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, you know, I think they almost certainly could do this kind of thing if they wanted
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to. And there is one thing to consider also that the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco quote recall or whatever it is, the service extension, whatever technically it is,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they say multiple times on that page that it only applies to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iPhone 6 Pluses with the serial number range that are in working order. And so
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that probably gives them the ability to say, well, this phone that you’re handing us is all beat up and we, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we’re not going to repair this, this horribly beat up phone with the broken screen and the dent all over it for this camera
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing. Because, you know, you’ve obviously have used this phone or it isn’t in good working order. So it gives them like it gives them an out
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and there’s no way for them to know on the server side, like, you know, what kind of condition your phone is in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco physically really. And so they probably don’t want to send this to two
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people whose devices are ineligible. Secondly,
⏹️ ▶️ John I think they’re doing it to save money.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, at least to save, you know, a lot of requests from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people who won’t be satisfied. But also, they might be doing it to save money. They might actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco say, you know, this is really only affecting some of these phones. And it says,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it makes it kind of clear in the language on the page that in one place where
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it states the condition, I believe the first time it states the conditions, it says phones that are in good working order and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are exhibiting this problem. And the second time I mentioned it, it doesn’t mention whether the phone
⏹️ ▶️ Marco has to be exhibiting the problem to have the repair done, but it looks like they’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco trying not to replace or not to service phones that don’t necessarily
⏹️ ▶️ Marco need, quote, need it. And that could be something like, well, we’re
⏹️ ▶️ Marco only going to service the ones whose cameras are actually showing this problem according to a genius who looks at it, or also it could
⏹️ ▶️ Marco mean we’re only going to service this problem for people who notice
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the problem and who care about the problem. So it probably is, to some degree,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco trying to minimize the number of people who even know about this problem and who go in to get things fixed and who
⏹️ ▶️ Marco go in and load the Apple stores and the repair centers with even more
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I was just about to say that it seems like it would be a tough thing to figure out.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Let’s assume they want to notify everyone. How do you do that exactly? By that I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey do you just send one massive notification to everyone that has an affected device? That’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ Casey unwise because the Apple store is going to have a pretty crummy day the next few days. Do you do it in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey batches? Well, then the Internet eventually finds out that they’re doing this in batches and then the Internet
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is enraged because this iPhone issue you didn’t even know you had isn’t getting fixed at the schedule
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you would like it to be fixed. How does that even work? It just seems like a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey nightmare. There’s no good reason for Apple to do this. Do agree with Urca,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but I just, I don’t think that there’s anything in it for Apple, and all it does
⏹️ ▶️ Casey is make things kind of more challenging for them.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, this doesn’t seem like an urgent issue. As the chatroom pointed out, they don’t need to have the phones polling or anything. They can just do
⏹️ ▶️ John a push notification, and the serial number, like when you do find my iPhone and list all your devices, they know
⏹️ ▶️ John your devices. They have this information available to them. the OS wouldn’t need to poll, they would just
⏹️ ▶️ John need to, you know, send out a push notification to all the things. But it’s not like, uh, batteries
⏹️ ▶️ John may explode, you need to know right now now now. It’s more like the kind of thing that they would probably
⏹️ ▶️ John email you, and as long as you used an Apple ID, they have at least one email,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, with your phone, set it up with an Apple ID, they have one email address, and it’s the type of thing they could send out the emails, and I
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t think it matters if you send all the emails at once or in batches, because people aren’t immediately going to run out,
⏹️ ▶️ John again, it’s not urgent. People are really aren’t going to run out to the store, read their email whenever they read
⏹️ ▶️ John it, and maybe look at the like, oh, half the people forget that they read it. Other people may put a reminder in
⏹️ ▶️ John their calendar. I think the there won’t be a big rush on Apple stores, no matter how you notify
⏹️ ▶️ John about it. And it just doesn’t seem that urgent, like for this particular thing.
⏹️ ▶️ John And the money saving aspect definitely has something to it. But yeah, a lot of those a lot of these type of things,
⏹️ ▶️ John things that don’t happen very often that aren’t an essential expected part of the product experience
⏹️ ▶️ John tend to be done in, not just an Apple, but in every company, tend to be done in sort of ways
⏹️ ▶️ John that seem inefficient or not high tech because it’s not, you know, the stuff that happens all the time,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, software updates, for example, like expected parts of the life cycle of a product
⏹️ ▶️ John are iterated on and improved and made more streamlined and made efficient and so on and so forth. And these things
⏹️ ▶️ John that happen rarely or are supposed to happen rarely, it’s like, we’ll just slap something together. Even
⏹️ ▶️ John something like, now that I’m excusing this, but you can think about the whole pushing the U2 album onto everyone’s things.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s not a thing that happens all the time. Like that was, as far as I know, that’s the only time they ever did that. It’s not as if there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John an established system for doing this in a way that has been proven
⏹️ ▶️ John to be efficient and non-annoying. They just like probably went to them and just said, well, can we,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, cause they couldn’t probably couldn’t give everyone promo codes because their promo code system probably couldn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John handle that because it’s just too many people and they don’t want to let you know so they probably went to the people say what’s the best way we can give
⏹️ ▶️ John everyone is for free we can we make it free for a day on the store well then people might not redeem it and
⏹️ ▶️ John you know like part of it was they really wanted this music to actually be on people’s things without them having to do anything like
⏹️ ▶️ John in other words you had to opt out instead of opt in but the way that they did it was just so clumsy
⏹️ ▶️ John and ham-fisted and at least part of that has to be part of it is just wrong-headed thinking the other part
⏹️ ▶️ John is that it’s not something they do every day so you just got to say with the mechanisms and tools and
⏹️ ▶️ John services we have at our disposal, what can we do to make this happen? Considering they
⏹️ ▶️ John do have push notifications, that was one of the things that seems like they could have done. But then someone in the meeting will
⏹️ ▶️ John raise their hand and say, yeah, but is this really so important? And then like the bean counter guy,
⏹️ ▶️ John like Marco says, says, well, that make more people come in and try to get this service, whether they need it or not.
⏹️ ▶️ John So going to web form and entering your serial number number starts looks pretty good in that regard.
⏹️ ▶️ John Can we make a web form? Can we do that? I think so. Get that guy who knows what that web objects in here.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But also, you know, so this, this isn’t a problem that is so urgent that it will cause like data loss
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or a physical hazard. As you said, you know, there’s a batteries and exploding, you know, you’re like somebody in chat was saying
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how the iMac three terabyte drive recall because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think it was Seagate, whoever made those three terabyte drives, like they basically all failed everywhere. It wasn’t just an iMac. So that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that whole drive generation was terrible. So they email people for that, but that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco makes sense. Like this is your data that you could be losing if this drive dies. In this case,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like your photos might be blurry on your 6 Plus if it was made in this range. By the way, mine was.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco My test 6 Plus, the serial number qualifies, but I, you know, that’s not going to qualify if they actually
⏹️ ▶️ Marco checked to have it pass, so I figure I’ll worry about it later. But another thing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is, some people might say, well, how do you send a push notification and will they worry about annoying
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people? And the answer there is they don’t worry about that at all because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they already spam us with push notifications for stupid things.
⏹️ ▶️ John There are three words for that one, flash flood warning. You ever been in an office, well
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know if you have them down where you are, but you’re in the office and there’s a flash flood warning, it sounds like the world is coming to an
⏹️ ▶️ John end as everyone’s iPhones go off with this terrible klaxon sound. So I feel like
⏹️ ▶️ John they have, I mean that’s not them and you can opt out of that, you can turn that stuff off. Well,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and a few people in the chat are saying that’s a legal requirement, they had to do that. Anyway, that’s separate though. What I’m talking about is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco those BS push notifications from the Tips app and from the App Store and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from the News app in iOS 9. You know, I’ve complained for a long time now that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there has always been a rule. Ever since push notifications were launched, there was always a rule in the App
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Store review rules that said that you could not use push notifications for marketing or promotion
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of any kind. And not only has that rule never been enforced, ever,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like there’s been spam push notifications or push notifications that are for marketing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or promotion only, those have existed since the beginning of time. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco very popular apps have always used them. Like it isn’t like it’s only a few bad actors who do it. And like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s common practice, everybody does it now. And Apple has never seemed to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco care, even though they have this rule, they’ve never seemed to even bother trying to enforce it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And now Apple has started breaking that rule themselves. And that like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they don’t seem to care or you know obviously you know Apple is not one person so certain teams obviously
⏹️ ▶️ Marco don’t seem to care but like to me that’s extremely inappropriate.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like and and maybe it’s it just seemed like this is one of those things that I care a lot more about than everybody else in the world
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and so maybe I’m just nuts but to me a spam notification
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is never okay and And it’s especially not okay from the platform vendor
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for a notification that I was opted into by default. That is not cool at all.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey No, I couldn’t agree more. And the Tips app, I think I’d had it on my phone because it got pushed
⏹️ ▶️ Casey onto my phone, you know, during a software update or whatever. I think I saw one
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the tips come through on Notification Center. And the very next thing I did
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was grab my phone and turn off all notifications from Tips and bury it in the most deep folder
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in the middle of nowhere on my home screens because I don’t want anything to do with it. I don’t want it. I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey don’t want to be opted into it. I wish I was, you know, I wish it was opt in
⏹️ ▶️ Casey by me rather than opt in by them. Just no, go away, don’t do it. And it, again,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey like you said, Marco, it doesn’t encourage an app developer to be a good
⏹️ ▶️ Casey citizen of the platform. If the platform vendor’s doing the same BS crap that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I would want to do as a developer, hypothetically. It’s just gross.
Cracks in the foundation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco This is kind of a larger theme that I keep seeing cracks in the foundation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco here, and I’m really fearing for this. You know, John mentioned the U2 album, Songs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of Innocence? Sounds of Innocence? Whatever it was. Spam of Innocence. And there’s
⏹️ ▶️ Marco been things like that. Now, these, you know, certain apps showing us notifications from Apple,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it kind of seems like Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is a big company. They are the man. Like talking about rebelling against
⏹️ ▶️ Marco IBM, rebelling against the big company, rebelling against the man, Apple is the man now. And Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is big corporate America now. And most of the time we’re able to ignore that. Most of the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco time that is not a problem in the way that big self-interested
⏹️ ▶️ Marco only and sometimes tasteless companies, you know, the way they usually act,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the way they usually annoy people like us, usually Apple does not display
⏹️ ▶️ Marco those qualities. But there have been a few instances recently where it seems
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like they’re slipping. It seems like, and I don’t know if this is like a Steve versus Tim thing,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco probably not, but it seems like Apple is starting to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco behave more like the giant corporation that they have been for quite some time
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it’s starting to to negatively affect some of the things they do in ways that annoy people like us
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who in the past have you know Apple’s never been perfect but it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sure seems like they’re making little bad judgment calls more frequently now than
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they used to in ways like spamming us and promoting their own stuff and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know promoting Apple Music so heavily in iTunes and the music app that they’ve just ruined the entire music app and they’ve ruined
⏹️ ▶️ Marco iTunes to a great degree. Stuff like that. Like, they’re making bad calls and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they’re doing things that are only self-interested
⏹️ ▶️ Marco rather than being self-interested that also benefit us.
⏹️ ▶️ John They ruin iTunes every few years though.
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t think this ruining of iTunes is much different than all the other times they ruined iTunes. We’ve talked about iTunes
⏹️ ▶️ John in past shows. I think of all those things, the only one I can kind of defend is the Tips app because is if there’s
⏹️ ▶️ John gonna be a tips app, it kinda has to be opt out, no one is going to, the whole point is you
⏹️ ▶️ John need, the people who need these tips the most have no idea how to opt into it. So which
⏹️ ▶️ John OS added the thing where you can turn off notifications from the notification? Is that iOS 9? You can do that?
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I thought that was in one, I’m like keeping up with iOS stuff,
⏹️ ▶️ John thought that was in one of the things that like from the notification, you could say I don’t wanna see these notifications anymore. Cause that’s part of the
⏹️ ▶️ John hassle is like, Oh, that’s interesting. You get the notification, maybe I’m just misremembering, chat room will correct me in a second if I’m wrong,
⏹️ ▶️ John but if not, Apple should do this. You get the notification, and even when you know how to do it,
⏹️ ▶️ John like, oh, I gotta go back to settings, then notifications, and then scroll until I find
⏹️ ▶️ John the thing, because there’s no search. Maybe there is a search on that page, that’s another idea. Did they add a search to settings in iOS?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco yes they did. It almost works.
⏹️ ▶️ John All right. People in the chat room say I’m thinking of Android, but anyway, yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s a feature that would be handy. But for tips, that has to be opt-out,
⏹️ ▶️ John because the whole point of the tips The people who need the most need to be able and it can be annoying even those tips can be annoying
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s one of the tips one of the first tips should be maybe the second tip should be Don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John want to see any more of these tips. Here’s how you turn them off Now someone on the chat room is saying that I’m correct that
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t turn them off from the notification Anyway, I haven’t installed iOS 9 yet in case you haven’t noticed
⏹️ ▶️ John But yeah all the other stuff I don’t know it’s hard for me to discern trends here the
⏹️ ▶️ John only trend I can maybe pick out is is that when Jobs was still
⏹️ ▶️ John around, you could, they seemed much more limited
⏹️ ▶️ John in the things they were willing to try. Like they didn’t try a lot of stuff. That’s true. They were very limited
⏹️ ▶️ John and you could kind of, I don’t know if this is actually true, but you can kind of get a feel for like,
⏹️ ▶️ John things that you would imagine Steve Jobs would find distasteful didn’t get out the door. Is that
⏹️ ▶️ John because he was micromanaging everything or is that because everyone around him thought to themselves, if I show this to Steve, tell
⏹️ ▶️ John me it’s crappy and we shouldn’t put it out or whatever. Whereas the Tim Cooks Apple is trying much more things
⏹️ ▶️ John and overall I think that’s a benefit because we just get so many things that we’ve wanted for so long
⏹️ ▶️ John that you know I mean just look at iOS 8 and all the other stuff but on the other side you have like that we never talked about that
⏹️ ▶️ John promotional site about what’s so amazing about the iPhone and how app reviewers have great ideas and stuff
⏹️ ▶️ John like that like that would never have come out of you know if that had passed under
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey the nose of Steve
⏹️ ▶️ John Jobs, that’s not the kind of BS that he would like to put out.
⏹️ ▶️ John And that is not the correct brand of BS. I
⏹️ ▶️ John think it’s still a net positive I’m willing to deal with the bumps in the road
⏹️ ▶️ John here. A lot of these things just reveal, like I said, the ability to turn off the notification
⏹️ ▶️ John from the notification. That’s just a feature they should have. You could say the problem
⏹️ ▶️ John is they keep sending too many notifications or the tips app annoys me or even stuff like I can’t
⏹️ ▶️ John delete these apps off the phone I should be able to hide them or whatever. Those are exactly the type of things that Tim Cook’s Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John seems more receptive to hearing the cries about and they’ll get to them eventually. Obviously the ability to actually
⏹️ ▶️ John hide the like the stocks app or whatever is probably really low on the list of thing of long-standing
⏹️ ▶️ John complaints about iOS in terms of impact and it’s like well just put them in a folder that’s what everyone else does but I think they will
⏹️ ▶️ John eventually get to it. Unlike the pre Tim Cook Apple where you’re like, you know what, they’re never going to
⏹️ ▶️ John let me hide the stocks app. Just put it in a folder. No big deal.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I don’t know. It seems like you know, what you said is correct that it does seem like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, we’ve we have now a different brand of BS, you know, and Steve’s BS,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco whether it was better aligned with us, or whether we were just used to it, or whether we just liked Steve as
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a character and kind of rolled it in, who knows?
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, it was a personification. Like we’re pretending it’s Steve’s BS. All it was was Apple’s BS when Steve
⏹️ ▶️ John was the CEO. And so everything was like mapped onto him. It’s like, well, I don’t know what actually went on inside the company.
⏹️ ▶️ John So I’ll pretend this was Steve Jobs idea. Like that was just the simple, the external simplification of the black box that
⏹️ ▶️ John was Apple. And same thing we’re doing with like Tim Cook’s Apple or whatever. We have no real way of knowing what’s going on
⏹️ ▶️ John internally. All we’re doing is trying to, you know, you just said, you know, Apple’s not one person, but we’re,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, we’re modeling it. Pretend it’s a person. What is the personality of that person? What kind of person is this
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, and you know, so many big corporations behave like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the out-of-touch men in their 50s who run them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it shows. And Apple has been run by men in their 50s for a while now,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but it really didn’t behave that way. It didn’t seem that way. They didn’t seem as
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out-of-touch as that kind of group usually does to people like us.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But for some reason now I’m not feeling that confident in that anymore. It’s just it does
⏹️ ▶️ Marco seem like that has changed without Steve or at least in the same time that that Steve unfortunately
⏹️ ▶️ Marco passed away and the leadership change and everything. It now seems
⏹️ ▶️ Marco more like what it is which is a group of old guys trying to trying
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to figure out what’s cool and trying to like kind of yell at us now to tell us what’s cool.
⏹️ ▶️ John Just hang in there, Marco. Soon you’ll be an old guy in his 50s, and then everything will match up again, and you’ll be
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco happy. Right, well, I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not cool, and I’m only 34, 33, 33. I’m only, I never know. I gotta figure
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, Casey it out every time. I’m already
⏹️ ▶️ Marco not cool, I know that. But I would not be running something where I have to decide
⏹️ ▶️ Marco important things that other people should think are cool.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco not cool, and
⏹️ ▶️ John this is just about taste. That’s what it always comes down to, is like what seems
⏹️ ▶️ John a tasteful, appropriate thing to do? What’s too flashy, what’s too flamboyant, what’s too obviously BS,
⏹️ ▶️ John like make your BS at least be clever, what is actually inspiring versus what is cloying, like it’s it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John difficult to do. It’s difficult to do as an individual, let alone trying to herd a giant multi-billion dollar
⏹️ ▶️ John organization to present a face to the world that most people who look on it decide
⏹️ ▶️ John that it is tasteful, the things they do are tasteful, like that’s a tall order. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is, but like like the things that we’ve seen from Apple in in recent time
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that that have seemed distasteful to us, things like you know the spam of innocence things like the weird
⏹️ ▶️ Marco presentations they keep giving and the weird EDDQ segment and the Apple Music segment and like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all this stuff you know it’s this is this seems like they’re they’re letting a lot of things
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out that you know Steve’s brand of BS and the thing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and the flaws Steve will let out would be things like oh yeah the iPod hi-fi that’s totally gonna
⏹️ ▶️ Marco be an awesome deal and people are gonna buy it you know like that that was like Steve’s kind of BS like everything
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the game was figuring
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco like the iPod Hi-Fi probably he
⏹️ ▶️ John does because he if he didn’t like it why would he even be introducing it he didn’t like the Motorola rocker and we could
⏹️ ▶️ John tell right kind of seem like he really liked the iPod Hi-Fi and I guess it was okay but
⏹️ ▶️ John the rest of the world did not like the iPod Hi-Fi except for Jason Snell who loves it but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco everyone else but like you like sometimes people like sometimes Steve thought something would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco at least seem to think something would be a great success and that people would
⏹️ ▶️ Marco have no problem with its price or limitations and then the market said very clearly otherwise.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That was Steve’s, I think that that was Steve’s biggest or most common flaw in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco judgment. Whereas now, with current Apple, we have other flaws in judgment that are very different
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and to me a little more worrisome and maybe it’s no big deal, you know, maybe maybe I’m overthinking
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. That’s very possible.
⏹️ ▶️ John But don’t you think it’s offset by the other, the other changes in judgment of like is it a good idea it’s for apps
⏹️ ▶️ John to have extensions, or to have third party keyboards, setting aside the really buggy implementation.
⏹️ ▶️ John The new Apple says yes, the old Apple says no, I like the new Apple decision better. I think that outweighs all this stuff.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think you’re right. And and that’s why like, overall, you know, I think Apple is in a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco better position now than they were, say, five years ago, you know, overall, things are better. Not, you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco know, not everything is better. But overall, I think you’re right, the things are better. It still, it seems
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like, you know, we all thought that after Steve,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Apple, you know, we were all telling ourselves back then, you know, Apple will be okay, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco maybe it won’t change very much. But I think what we’re seeing is how it
⏹️ ▶️ Marco has changed, and it isn’t all for the better. And there are a lot of things that are better. But obviously, You can’t have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco such an incredibly strong personality who had tons of power. You
⏹️ ▶️ Marco can’t have that kind of person at the top of the company who then leaves
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and nothing changes. You know, it was never going to be nothing will change.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And it was never realistic to think that the things that we loved about Apple
⏹️ ▶️ Marco would all survive this transition. Some of them haven’t. And I think that’s a little sad.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah. We really need to talk about something that’s awesome, but very, very quickly, I just wanted to apologize
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for all the people who have been writing me saying, oh my God, now I see a crescent on my iPhone. What have you done?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Sorry guys, but welcome to the club. Anyway, why don’t you tell us about something that’s cool, Marco.
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More Force Touch speculation
⏹️ ▶️ Casey All right. I wanted to quickly talk about
⏹️ ▶️ Casey something I’ve been thinking about on and off all day today. We’ve been talking a lot about forced
⏹️ ▶️ Casey touch and tangentially the haptic engine and how it would
⏹️ ▶️ Casey be used on the iPhone. Something that had occurred to me, and I don’t recall us talking
⏹️ ▶️ Casey about this, but what if it was opt-in, kind of like iPad multitasking gestures, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey the, the five finger pinch and the, uh, four finger swipes. What if it was opt in?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so. It all the confusion that we were worried about from normal
⏹️ ▶️ Casey users that had never experienced force touch before and don’t really know what it’s all about. What if it was optional?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Like, would that be a reasonable solution to the problem? I’m still not sure what it would do necessarily,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey but maybe it’s an optional long press. But like, like you were saying before Marco
⏹️ ▶️ Casey on a prior episode, but, but the The key is that it’s opt-in and by default it doesn’t do anything.
⏹️ ▶️ John You can’t market it that way though. If they’re going to put a force touch on the screen, you can be pretty darn sure that it’s going to be
⏹️ ▶️ John one of the very high up bullet point features of the iPhone 6S
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever they end up calling it. And if it’s opt-in, people are going to get it and say,
⏹️ ▶️ John I saw the TV ad where they did this thing. How do I do that thing? Oh, you got to go to settings. I feel like it can’t possibly
⏹️ ▶️ John be opt-in just for marketing reasons. That is assuming they even tell you that it’s there.
⏹️ ▶️ John If they don’t mention it and decide this is not going to be a marketing feature, that would seem weird to me. Like why
⏹️ ▶️ John build the sensors in and not like usually there aren’t that many marketing features for
⏹️ ▶️ John the S revision phones because it’s going to look the same as the other one and they maybe change the materials and tweak this and tweak
⏹️ ▶️ John that. But it’s not like, oh, this one has, you know, touch ID.
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s the type of feature that you get when the whole phone changes shape in the, you know, the sort of two year cadence
⏹️ ▶️ John that Apple’s on right now. So any kind of feature that you can say, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John that you added in S revision year, I think they feel like they really want to tout it. So I cannot imagine it being
⏹️ ▶️ John opt-in unless they really, really, really couldn’t figure out what
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey the hell to do with
⏹️ ▶️ John forced touch on the phone. And they’re like, if we can’t figure out what to do with it, we should just leave it in kind of experimental
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I guess that makes sense. The other thing I was thinking about is
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what if they don’t do force touch but still
⏹️ ▶️ Casey have the haptic engine? What if it’s not about
⏹️ ▶️ Casey pushing through the display? It’s not about having different interaction paradigms
⏹️ ▶️ Casey from user to phone, but it’s about having a different interaction paradigm phone
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to user. Maybe it’s like the RumblePak was to us
⏹️ ▶️ Casey back when we were playing Nintendo games. That’s for you, John. When the RumblePak was new,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s sort of like that, where it’s a different response mechanism, but maybe there isn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a force touch on the phone.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, they already have that. Like, the vibration motor’s already in there. I saw a couple people tweeting about this. They’re like, oh, they can make it so you can
⏹️ ▶️ John feel when you rub over a certain thing. I don’t think they’re going to put a different physical thing that shakes your phone
⏹️ ▶️ John inside the phone. one thing that shakes your phone, maybe that thing will be changed slightly to
⏹️ ▶️ John give different kinds of feedback, but it’s still just going to be one thing. It’s the thing that makes your phone vibrate when you put it on silent. It’s the thing
⏹️ ▶️ John that, you know, that’s going to do any kind of haptic feedback. That doesn’t require anything
⏹️ ▶️ John more than just a plain old touch sensor. The force sensor, the whole point of that is to give
⏹️ ▶️ John a more accurate reading of how hard you’re pressing on the screen, more accurate than seeing how much your finger squishes,
⏹️ ▶️ John which I think is not the best way to do that. So if they’re going to build that they’re gonna put those little sensors in there
⏹️ ▶️ John I feel like it has to be a combination of now we can tell how hard you’re pressing and now we can press
⏹️ ▶️ John you back by wiggling the little whatever a little thing they have in there that vibrates the phone
⏹️ ▶️ John and yeah we’ll just have to see what they decide to do with it it’s the type of thing they have to be careful with because
⏹️ ▶️ John you usually don’t get a chance to totally you know take a mulligan on a major
⏹️ ▶️ John input device or whatever, like double-clicking, whether that was a smart
⏹️ ▶️ John move or not, it’s really difficult. You can’t go like three years into the Mac and say, you know what? Double-click
⏹️ ▶️ John doesn’t mean open anymore. We changed our mind. In fact, there’s no more double-click, or double-click means something entirely
⏹️ ▶️ John different. In the world of touch, maybe you get a little bit of chance, like you mentioned that the gestures that are opt-in on the iPad, but
⏹️ ▶️ John those are, like someone thought that was a good idea. That’s another one that kind of leaked out. Someone thought that was a good idea, but then
⏹️ ▶️ John other people immediately realized if you try to play Fruit Ninja with it, you’ll end up going back to the home screen all the time. So So their solution
⏹️ ▶️ John was not let’s not ship that feature until we figure out how to make it work. Their solution was, all right, off by
⏹️ ▶️ John default, people can turn on if they want. And it’s a shame because that gesture is so addictive on the iPad.
⏹️ ▶️ John But you really can’t play Fruit Ninja with it. So
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco I don’t know what they do that.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I don’t know. I mean, I’m thinking, you know, the story here is probably
⏹️ ▶️ Marco very boring. It is probably not anything super clever. It is probably Force
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Touch is Force Touch. It’s advertised as Force Touch. It is some kind of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco tertiary, secondary click that will bring up some kind of secondary, tertiary
⏹️ ▶️ Marco function. And there will be some kind of API to access this gesture.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think that we’re overthinking it. I really think this is just, it’s going to be a feature
⏹️ ▶️ Marco added because they can. at Apple clearly really loves forced touch.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Like somebody who matters a lot clearly loves it and maybe it’s multiple people who matter a lot.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well you can see on the watch why they kind of had to do it because they needed more input methods.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco On the watch it makes sense. I don’t you know I’ve obviously said this a lot. I don’t think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it makes a lot of sense in the trackpads and if it makes sense in just the the MacBook
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one trackpad for thinness reasons okay although is it really like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve never listened to it but like I was thinking on my dog walk today that’s where I do all my thinking is it really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thinner to have the whole linear actuator and everything down there that’s thinner than a button I don’t know anyway
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it doesn’t matter you know putting it in all of the laptops I think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is it was maybe premature or unwarranted but
⏹️ ▶️ John so far most of the feedback from the youngsters is like Marco is an old man and we
⏹️ ▶️ John all love this better.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I guess this is my old man phase now beginning of my life that
⏹️ ▶️ John I think it’s not really because I think several years from now you’ll be okay with it and you’ll go
⏹️ ▶️ John back and use one of the buttons but that the button and moved and it will feel broken to you like all the whole
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thing tilts down. It’s very possible and I said before like I don’t hate the Force Touch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco trackpad I just think it’s worse than the current than the old one and you know I’m not gonna to not buy a new laptop
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever again to avoid it, but I’m certainly I don’t think I’m gonna love it when I have to make the transition.
⏹️ ▶️ John circle back to bagging on the keyboard because I think that is a more safe redoubt for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco argument. Right, well it doesn’t matter. So you know the addition of four
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stucks, obviously they’re putting this across the whole product line. I think this is maybe yet another thing that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco kind of ties into what I was saying earlier which is like, I think that this is really
⏹️ ▶️ Marco gonna be lost on so many people. I mean, it’s already, you know, I already
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think that they’ve blown the execution on the Mac side, where, you know, making it a tertiary click
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is weird. Making, designing it in such a way that the click feedback that you get
⏹️ ▶️ Marco feels noticeably worse than the old button, I think, was a poor choice. If they had a choice,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they might not have, who knows. on the phone if everything
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we’re hearing from various you know tip sources is correct that it is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just like a right-click and it’s you know another another level of interaction of oh well you got it you got to
⏹️ ▶️ Marco go around like shoving everything on the screen to see what it can do like that’s that kind of sucks like I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’ll it’ll be useful I think for games and for it like there was a good discussion on this on upgrade this week will
⏹️ ▶️ Marco link to that well by the time because he was upgraded last week and it was very
⏹️ ▶️ Marco good and they were pointing out you know this could really be useful for games of having like a different
⏹️ ▶️ John way for the first person to have the test your strength game to try to see if they can get people to punch their thumbs through their phone
⏹️ ▶️ John screens you know press harder oh you know you haven’t done it yet keep going
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s probably really easy to max out the sensor so I guess you can’t do that but that would be fun
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well and also if Apple enforces their after rules anymore
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because a big if these push notifications there is a rule against apps that Encourage
⏹️ ▶️ Marco people to damage their devices.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think it’ll be pretty easy to max out the four sensors So I don’t think you can make a game like that anyway, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco well people will try But yeah, so you know that I think it’s gonna be a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco really kind of boring new feature That’s not gonna set the world on fire in
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the same way that the Mac four-stack trackpads have been
⏹️ ▶️ John I Still think like if it’s easy to do even if they can’t figure out a use for it yet I think
⏹️ ▶️ John there is a potential use for it. And as long as they don’t go hog wild with it, making like every
⏹️ ▶️ John screen that’s part of the OS has every control, has something that you can force touch. It can’t be like
⏹️ ▶️ John a mystery meat navigation. It can’t be like playing Myst where you have to be like, do I tap this? Do I double tap
⏹️ ▶️ John this? Do I long press it? Do I force touch it? It’s really, they really need to
⏹️ ▶️ John figure out what they’re gonna do with it in their apps anyway. And then like third parties can dig their own graves. Like if they wanna
⏹️ ▶️ John have, you know, if Marco wants to have like, oh, you don’t know, you have to go into settings and don’t
⏹️ ▶️ John tap the switch, but force touch it, like no one’s gonna do that. And if they do, that’s their own stupid fault. So if they
⏹️ ▶️ John make the API open enough, then you can do that now with like, oh, you got a long press that control, you can’t just tap it. What do you mean
⏹️ ▶️ John long press? I don’t know what a long press is, but you know, they can do that. But Apple needs to set the example
⏹️ ▶️ John by just using it. And I think they did okay on the Mac, like fast forward and rewind
⏹️ ▶️ John for the video thing or a quick time player. That is a very specific, very focused use of force touch.
⏹️ ▶️ John that is not like, we’re defining a new language that you can use in every app. Go into a Finder window and press down
⏹️ ▶️ John and it will zoom in on the window or your icons will slide to the left or the right. They didn’t do that there. So
⏹️ ▶️ John I think it’s just, you know, finding the one or two places where you can use it and it actually is kind of cool and then
⏹️ ▶️ John not looking in other apps and saying, we’re gonna use force touch. Like if you find yourself doing that, you’re probably
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⏹️ ▶️ Casey Okay. So by the time most people have heard this, this news is going to be a week or two
⏹️ ▶️ Casey old. But a little while ago, there was a really
⏹️ ▶️ Casey kind of ugly article posted by the New York Times about
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Amazon and what it’s like to work there and their company culture and
⏹️ ▶️ Casey their hiring practices. And it made a pretty big splash. And the short, short version of the The article
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was it’s terrible to work there, but I don’t know. I only had a chance to read about the first
⏹️ ▶️ Casey half of it and even after having read that much I thought my goodness, I would never ever want to work
⏹️ ▶️ Casey at this place because among many other things, I like to see my family once every 16 years. I don’t know.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey John, how would you summarize this and what did I leave out because I know
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that there was a lot in this article. It was long. John
⏹️ ▶️ John Greenewald So the badness about Amazon is basically that they expect you to dedicate yourself
⏹️ ▶️ John mind, body and soul to the company, to work very long hours, to put your job before
⏹️ ▶️ John your family and your health and the rest of your life, to just really, you know, be sort
⏹️ ▶️ John of in full throttle mode all the time for the company.
⏹️ ▶️ John And if you can’t do that, and if you’re not super smart and not able to do a million things at once and have lots of work
⏹️ ▶️ John keeped on you, then you’re not, you know, the idea is like that Amazon is a demanding place to work.
⏹️ ▶️ John They only want the smartest people who get the most done and the best, hardest workers.
⏹️ ▶️ John And they’re very, you know, trying to make it, they were probably like a culture of excellence
⏹️ ▶️ John where they do the thing where they try to rank everybody and push out the low performers to make room for supposedly
⏹️ ▶️ John the new people. And the New York Times story was just horror story after
⏹️ ▶️ John horror story of how that, you know, what people think of as a work-life balance It’s just
⏹️ ▶️ John so far out of kilter at Amazon, all sorts of stories about people being asked to do things that are
⏹️ ▶️ John just, you know, beyond the pale for the purposes of the work being told explicitly, the work has to be more important
⏹️ ▶️ John than their family working really long hours and just all sorts of stuff like that.
⏹️ ▶️ John And. And you know, the flip side of it, I think that it’s New York times story was the, according
⏹️ ▶️ John to someone, someone from New York times, I think tweeted, there was the story that got them the highest number of comments ever on a
⏹️ ▶️ John New York time story because everyone who either currently works on Amazon or had previously worked on Amazon wanted to say,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, here’s my story working on Amazon. Either I have my own horror stories or I work there and
⏹️ ▶️ John it wasn’t like that at all or I work there and my group was good but I know other groups that were like this.
⏹️ ▶️ John Lots of people, not just in the New York Times, but everywhere around the web are throwing in their own,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, stories about Amazon. Because Amazon is a big company and a lot of different people have work there. Um, and I
⏹️ ▶️ John think the most interesting part of this, uh, well, I guess if you didn’t know this is what it was like
⏹️ ▶️ John in Amazon. And by the way, this is what it’s like in a lot of companies, also particularly startups,
⏹️ ▶️ John although it’s a little bit more appropriate for it to be that way in startups because in startup it’s like lots of hard
⏹️ ▶️ John work, but also potentially lots of reward. Whereas Amazon is so big that at this point you could work yourself
⏹️ ▶️ John to death and it’s not like you’re going to be a multimillionaire off your stock options in a few years, whereas in
⏹️ ▶️ John a startup you have a vanishingly small chance of doing that, but at least it’s a chance.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, that’s often overstated.
⏹️ ▶️ John I know, but it’s non-zero. The whole thing, Amazon is still operating as if it’s like, oh, you’re going to get all these options in
⏹️ ▶️ John the stock and blah, blah, blah, but that’s like, if you’re going to work yourself to death for a company, make
⏹️ ▶️ John it be your startup. Like the startup that you founded, that you have equity in, that
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re going to get rich off of if it succeeds, that you’re going to be ruined if it fails. I think is the only sort of
⏹️ ▶️ John reasonable way and even that is probably not a great idea because almost all startups fail and so you know but
⏹️ ▶️ John if you want to give it a run that is the thing to do your company your thing Amazon is not going to be your company
⏹️ ▶️ John you are probably not going to get rich off Amazon stock probably don’t work yourself but anyway some people are workaholics some people
⏹️ ▶️ John like that some people thrive in that atmosphere some people don’t have family some people do want to dedicate themselves to their job
⏹️ ▶️ John so there’s two sides to this story here depending on how you look at it but the most interesting part was
⏹️ ▶️ John the reaction of, you know, because Amazon’s got to do damage control because they’re going to have lots of difficulty recruiting because
⏹️ ▶️ John now everyone thinks Amazon is a terrible sweatshop which by the way it is probably and especially much
⏹️ ▶️ John more so for blue collar workers rather than the white collar people who are writing their code or running their websites or whatever and
⏹️ ▶️ John no one seems to care about that. But anyway, setting that aside, how
⏹️ ▶️ John do you pronounce his last name? Bezos? Bezos? I can never get it right. Bezos. Anyway, Jeff Bezos,
⏹️ ▶️ John CEO of Amazon, put out this statement. And the little things I pulled from it
⏹️ ▶️ John is these two little passages. I don’t recognize this Amazon. He’s talking about the Amazon as described in The New York
⏹️ ▶️ John Times. This article doesn’t describe the Amazon I know. And I love that aspect of this thing that
⏹️ ▶️ John he’s writing, because all he’s doing is restating the problem. I’m totally sure that he doesn’t
⏹️ ▶️ John recognize that Amazon, because the experience of Amazon for the CEO is not like this at all. He’s probably
⏹️ ▶️ John a workaholic, and he probably works himself to death. But he’s the CEO. He stands to gain the most from
⏹️ ▶️ John it. And he’s working like crazy because he’s a workaholic. And that’s what he likes to do. His work life balance is exactly
⏹️ ▶️ John the way he wants it. Like this is what he made for himself. Of course, he doesn’t recognize this Amazon. You don’t recognize Amazon
⏹️ ▶️ John because you’re not a lowly Amazon employee being told to work yourself to death for no payoff.
⏹️ ▶️ John You’re a multi bazillionaire who is a workaholic like Elon Musk or Steve Jobs or any of these
⏹️ ▶️ John other people, because that’s what’s in them. And they’re driven to do that. And I’m sure there are employees of Amazon who are like that as well.
⏹️ ▶️ John They’re not going to get the rewards from it. But again, some people just thrive in that type of atmosphere. But the reason this works
⏹️ ▶️ John is in New York Times story is most people do not thrive in that atmosphere and to most people, it’s reads like a horror story.
⏹️ ▶️ John And so you read it and go, Oh, my gosh, I can’t believe what it’s like now. Now, if I ever had an idea
⏹️ ▶️ John that was going to work for Amazon, I’m definitely not going to work there now because I read this article and things that I hear happening. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ John like my nightmare of the worst possible job I could ever have. Most people are going to have that attitude.
⏹️ ▶️ John And that’s why I would try if I had to sit down with Jeff Bezos, So I would try to sit down and say, look, I don’t know a lot about a lot of people,
⏹️ ▶️ John but I think I know a little bit at this point about professional programmers. And if ever
⏹️ ▶️ John there was an employee less inclined to be into the sort
⏹️ ▶️ John of gung-ho, just work, work, work,
⏹️ ▶️ John stay in the office at late hours, grinding, grinding, grinding, it is the programmer
⏹️ ▶️ John for a giant Fortune 500 company. Because programming, I think, is one of those types of things where
⏹️ ▶️ John the Balmer curve aside, we’ll put a link in that in there, it’s one of those things where- Balmer Peak. Balmer Peak, yeah. Where
⏹️ ▶️ John you can’t, like the harder you work and the more you grind, the worse you program. Like you have
⏹️ ▶️ John to have times of rest to think about things. You have to walk the dog, like Marco said. You have to take a shower. Like that’s where
⏹️ ▶️ John you actually solve all your programming powers, is in the shower, while you’re walking the dog, while you’re sleeping, sometimes
⏹️ ▶️ John you wake up in the morning, it’s in your head. If you stay late one night and try to work on this thing work, work,
⏹️ ▶️ John work, work, work for like five extra hours. There’s no point. It’s specifically
⏹️ ▶️ John for programming. And not that everyone they hire is a programmer, but if you were going to say, we
⏹️ ▶️ John only want you to work here if you thrive in this type of atmosphere, you’re going to be missing out on a lot of really,
⏹️ ▶️ John really great programmers. Because in my experience, great programmers
⏹️ ▶️ John tend to be less receptive to that type of work environment. Most of the time, I think it’s not conducive
⏹️ ▶️ John to good programming. Then for example, salespeople. If you want to find the world’s best salesperson, I bet they do thrive in
⏹️ ▶️ John this type of environment because sales is all about go, go, go, right? And they’re go-getters, they’re
⏹️ ▶️ John going to get the job done, they’re going to put in the long hours, they’re going to do the business travel and all that stuff. That’s not how
⏹️ ▶️ John programming works. So I don’t know about all the other positions that they’re filling in marketing and other things that are outside engineering.
⏹️ ▶️ John And again, setting aside the blue collar workers that are being exploited in the factories packing packages. In 100
⏹️ ▶️ John degree heat in a building where the air conditioning doesn’t work, where Amazon thoughtfully provides ambulances outside so when the workers
⏹️ ▶️ John drop dead, or don’t drop dead, but collapse on the line, that they’re whisked outside to the ambulance,
⏹️ ▶️ John that is a whole separate issue and that is terrible. So really just to put this in perspective, what we’re talking about is like
⏹️ ▶️ John highly paid programmers being asked not to see their kids, not people being asked to work in 100 degree
⏹️ ▶️ John heat in a factory and collapsing from the heat and being taken to company sponsored ambulances outside. But anyway,
⏹️ ▶️ John I think this is just a bad business decision. This is not the way that you should run a company
⏹️ ▶️ John of Amazon size. This is not the way you should manage an organization that is focused on engineering.
⏹️ ▶️ John And they would say back to me, our company is incredibly successful. Look at the amazing things that we’ve done.
⏹️ ▶️ John We’re a giant retailer. We do all these things like S3 and EC2, and you think we’re great at services. And the reason we’re
⏹️ ▶️ John like that is because we have this attitude. And I would say, no, you do that despite that attitude. And then
⏹️ ▶️ John I would make him read Creativity Inc. and learn that success hides problems. Then we would go back and forth. the end he would do what he wants
⏹️ ▶️ John because he owns the company and I have a podcast.
⏹️ ▶️ John now that we’ve played out that little thing… You have many podcasts. Well, that’s right. I have multiple podcasts, thank
⏹️ ▶️ John you Jeff. Don’t undersell yourself. Right. That was my thoughts
⏹️ ▶️ John coming out of this and so I think it’s good for stories like this to be in the media to sort of raise awareness
⏹️ ▶️ John of this. I don’t know if Marco’s ever been in a job like this but I don’t think I’ve ever been in a job like this either but I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ John been adjacent to jobs like this. I’ve known people in jobs like this. I’ve seen parts
⏹️ ▶️ John of organizations that I’ve been in that are like this, and it really is my worst nightmare. Like I would never want a job
⏹️ ▶️ John like this. And I know a lot of people who wouldn’t, if they
⏹️ ▶️ John could possibly help. And that’s the thing about hiring engineers and programmers, they can get work elsewhere. So
⏹️ ▶️ John if you don’t have a stock that is going to have the potential to skyrocket in the near future,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s going to be difficult to attract those people if you’re going to work them like this? Steven
⏹️ ▶️ Casey McLaughlin My first job out of school was working for a company that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey actually made slot machines for Native American casinos in Oklahoma.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And the company at the time was, I don’t know, maybe 10 or 15 developers,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and they were all ex-EA folks. Like well,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey they were part of a company that was bought by EA, and then EA ruined it as EA is off to do.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And so these were guys, generally, actually there were no women there at the time that were developers,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey so they were all guys. They were typically in their late 30s, early 40s, generally speaking, completely single,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and generally speaking, didn’t really have a whole lot else to do
⏹️ ▶️ Casey other than work. And not that they weren’t great, great, great guys, and I don’t mean that disparagingly, it’s just the fact
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the matter was they didn’t have spouses or children, and many of them didn’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey seem to have a whole lot of hobbies other than work. So they worked constantly,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey just constantly. And here it was, I came in fresh faced and, you know, right out of school
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and I didn’t want to work constantly. I didn’t want to work nonstop.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I left the company, um, mostly because I had been asked
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to do this really kind of impossible project before a trade show. And
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I worked, I don’t remember now, but I want to say it was 11 or 12 hours a a day for like a month or two,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey um, including most weekend days, trying to get this thing to work. And I eventually did get it to work.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And then the trade show came and they were preparing everything they were going to show
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and then just decided, you know what? We’re not going to show that after all. And I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey was furious. I was beyond furious because here it was, I busted my butt for all that time.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And it was like, eh, well, we don’t need it after all. Thanks though. And I don’t know, maybe that makes me
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a millennial in the, in the disparaging way. Maybe that makes me not a team player, but I just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey thought it was ridiculous that here it was, I couldn’t do any of the things I wanted to do for a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey month and then they just up and decided, oh yeah, we don’t need that after all. And I left the company.
⏹️ ▶️ John You should not get a job in the games industry.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey totally. No, you’re absolutely right. You are absolutely right. But I didn’t know any better at the time.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, well that’s part of that I think is, again, speaking to programming, which is the profession
⏹️ ▶️ John that I think we’re all the most familiar with, even Marco, in large companies is
⏹️ ▶️ John that that experience of having a miniature version of what the game developers
⏹️ ▶️ John call crunch time, where something needs to ship, and everyone puts
⏹️ ▶️ John in long hours, and it’s all hands on deck. I think every programmer goes through that, even
⏹️ ▶️ John if only on their own projects for fake artificial deadlines that they made for themselves. But certainly in other
⏹️ ▶️ John companies where you have a software product or a release or a trade show or something, everyone is killing themselves to
⏹️ ▶️ John make a deadline. That experience I think is formative for programmers because it teaches
⏹️ ▶️ John you, it’s difficult, it’s probably the most grueling
⏹️ ▶️ John physical thing that programmers have to do because programming is not a grueling physical job. You’re not
⏹️ ▶️ John cracking rocks with a hammer all day, you’re pressing keys on a keyboard and sitting in a chair, right? But it does take its toll
⏹️ ▶️ John on you in terms of lack of sleep or even just sitting in a chair all day or not eating well and nevermind
⏹️ ▶️ John seeing your family or whatever, like say you don’t have that. You’re just, you know, a single person right out of college.
⏹️ ▶️ John Um, what I think you learn from that is you reflect on it after the experience, which hopefully ends
⏹️ ▶️ John in whatever trade show, whatever. And you say, what is it about the piece of software
⏹️ ▶️ John that we were creating together that made it so difficult to do the thing we wanted
⏹️ ▶️ John to do? Um, like how, you know, it’s the stupid cliche
⏹️ ▶️ John that you see on all the posters work smarter, not harder, but in programming,
⏹️ ▶️ John there’s actually something behind that which is, if you had done
⏹️ ▶️ John your earlier work differently, how would it have made your later work easier?
⏹️ ▶️ John That’s basically all programming is. You write the program, then you realize how you should have written it. The next time, if you’re lucky enough to
⏹️ ▶️ John write a similar program, you write it in the better way, and then you realize how you shouldn’t have written it differently, and the next time you realize you
⏹️ ▶️ John have made it easy to change along these axes, but did not realize that this other axis was the one that is gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John change along. Now it’s really hard to change in that way like that’s all programming is is doing something then realizing how
⏹️ ▶️ John you could have done it differently To make the future changes that you have to make for whatever reason easier to make Yep,
⏹️ ▶️ John and so crunch time and that you know that hellish experience of just Having
⏹️ ▶️ John to sit there and just grind yourself into dust to try to get work done teaches you
⏹️ ▶️ John How to do your job better a little bit But I think it also teaches you how incredibly inefficient it is to bang your head
⏹️ ▶️ John against that wall that how if you had merely gone home at a reasonable hour and had a full night’s sleep and come in the next morning, you would have
⏹️ ▶️ John solved this problem faster and better. I think that’s another thing you learn during crunch.” And that gets back to
⏹️ ▶️ John this article that I think, I don’t even know if it’s related to the Amazon thing, I don’t remember. So long ago, I put these links in here.
⏹️ ▶️ John But it’s from Dustin Moskowitz talking about how the 40-hour workweek
⏹️ ▶️ John is not a, you know, he says it’s not a great compromise
⏹️ ▶️ John between capitalism and hedonism. It’s actually a carefully considered outcome, I’m quoting
⏹️ ▶️ John from this thing, of profit-maximizing research by Henry Ford in the early 20th century. Basically,
⏹️ ▶️ John if you’re running this experiment and say, hey, if we work people 80 hours a
⏹️ ▶️ John week versus 10 hours a week versus 20, there is a maximum where you get the most productivity out of people.
⏹️ ▶️ John If you work them like crazy, they get tired, they get sloppy, they get angry, they do worse work, they are less productive.
⏹️ ▶️ John And of course, if you have them work one hour a week, your output is not good. So you’re trying to find, not that 40 hours is some
⏹️ ▶️ John magic number or whatever, but you’re You’re trying to find the maximum where you get the most
⏹️ ▶️ John productivity out of people on a sustained basis. If you drive people like dogs, maybe
⏹️ ▶️ John you’ll get extra productivity out of them, but you’ll pay for it later. And if you want to have a sustained business,
⏹️ ▶️ John like maybe that’s why you do startups, like there will be no sustained business if we don’t kill ourselves for these two weeks leading up to this trade show. So you kill
⏹️ ▶️ John yourself leading up to the trade show. Again, I would say, make sure you’re killing yourself for a potential payoff that’s going to benefit
⏹️ ▶️ John you, not somebody else, because it’s not worth killing yourself for somebody else to get rich. You
⏹️ ▶️ John want to find a way to get the most out of people
⏹️ ▶️ John on a sustained basis and usually that ends up being a work week in
⏹️ ▶️ John a work environment especially for programming. It does not look scary from the outside. That you work reasonable
⏹️ ▶️ John hours, that you get a good night’s sleep, that you get exercise, that you eat right. That is the only way in any human endeavor
⏹️ ▶️ John to have sustained productivity out of people. And programmers are not like people breaking rocks with
⏹️ ▶️ John hammers in that if you grind one of them into dust and they leave the company
⏹️ ▶️ John with RSI or have a nervous breakdown or do something else terrible it’s not so
⏹️ ▶️ John easy to just find another one it’s not just like a warm body in a chair where you just need ballast for your giant barge
⏹️ ▶️ John right it’s supposedly a highly skilled job and so if you’re grinding up those workers
⏹️ ▶️ John and spitting them out that’s even worse than if you’re doing the same thing it’s worse
⏹️ ▶️ John economically if not morally speaking and doing the same thing for a position where if people get disgruntled and leave, you can
⏹️ ▶️ John easily find new applicants for it.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, so that’s something that I think you… I think that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco actually is partly the case that the industry does have
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so many… like, you know, the right thing to do from our perspective because the three
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of us are all pretty experienced programmers who are approaching middle age,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who we like to think are wise and care about spending time with our families.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so we are the ones saying, you know, to do things with higher quality,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you should really have wiser, older programmers who are more experienced, who will
⏹️ ▶️ Marco therefore work way more efficiently than young crappy programmers who are being
⏹️ ▶️ Marco worked 80 hours a week. But there are so many of those young programmers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco willing to go work for companies like Amazon, Which by the way, this story to me was nothing new,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because I’ve heard horror stories about how horrible working for Amazon is for years. I don’t think this is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a surprise to anybody who’s ever paid attention to Amazon and people who work there. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think there’s enough people willing to go into this business to go work for a big
⏹️ ▶️ Marco company or a startup. There’s enough input of new computer science graduates
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or new people who are teaching themselves programming who want a job all over the world. There’s enough
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of these people coming in. It’s kind of like the entertainment business where the employers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are able to abuse and burn people out and you know they’re able to do this because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco there’s there are still a huge supply. You know the way they always complain and and make a bunch of noise about
⏹️ ▶️ Marco how there’s a shortage of good programmers in this country is I think mostly BS. I think it’s totally
⏹️ ▶️ John There is a shortage of good programmers.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey You didn’t say shortage of programmers. You said
⏹️ ▶️ John shortage of good programmers. Like, your analogy of the entertainment industry is exactly right, because that’s why games
⏹️ ▶️ John development is so bad, because everybody wants to be a games developer. Hey, doesn’t that sound fun? And companies
⏹️ ▶️ John take advantage of that enthusiasm. Oh, you know, there’s a million applicants for this thing, because you get to be a game developer.
⏹️ ▶️ John You get to make games. Isn’t that awesome? Now they grind you into dust, and when you burn out, there’s another enthusiastic
⏹️ ▶️ John person knocking at the door. I want to be a games developer. Games are awesome. Let’s grind you up. But Amazon
⏹️ ▶️ John is not an entertainment company. Amazon, I don’t think, has that kind of draw. So then you’re just left with
⏹️ ▶️ John the generic draw of I want to be in the tech industry, which is better than, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, working in the mail room at a fortune 500 company and certainly pays better,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s nothing compared to the games industry. Like you said, the entertainment industry, I want to be in TV, I want to be in movies like
⏹️ ▶️ John that is a perfect opportunity to grind up enthusiastic, naive people. But I just think the supply of programmers
⏹️ ▶️ John is, it’s more difficult to find, you know, like I said, good programmers. Now, maybe Amazon has the right strategy.
⏹️ ▶️ John We would rather grind into dust tons of programmers and not even
⏹️ ▶️ John use them the most efficiently. And the ones that survive will learn really hard lessons
⏹️ ▶️ John and become amazing, you know, efficient people and the ones that don’t, oh, well, they’ll leave and get a job
⏹️ ▶️ John someplace else. But we’ll just scoop up a set of new graduates. Maybe that an in aggregate gives them
⏹️ ▶️ John better throughput than trying to find programmers and give them a nice environment to work
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever. I don’t know because Google seems to me takes the other attitude where they try to give,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, they try not to work people to death. They try to give people, you know, room to
⏹️ ▶️ John figure out what it is they’re going to do. And it’s like a nice work environment. And Apple kind of seems in the middle where they don’t tell you what they’re doing.
⏹️ ▶️ John But from my understanding is that people at Apple work super duper hard. And I worry that Apple is grinding them up.
⏹️ ▶️ John But you can’t really tell because I think the screams are muffled by whatever umbrella that
⏹️ ▶️ John and an apple. The reason Apple thing gets away with it is because they’re more like the entertainment industry. I don’t just work in the tech
⏹️ ▶️ John industry. I work for Apple. I make iPhones.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, I think that used to be the case for a long time,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco but I think now they’re having a really big problem attracting and retaining good talent.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And there’s lots of reasons for this, and one of them I think is this problem of they do work people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco really hard. From what we’ve heard, it sounds like they really do work people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco harder than what I would consider healthy. And they consider that okay from all
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from level all the way to the top. And so and this is the kind of thing like once
⏹️ ▶️ Marco workaholism sets into a company’s culture it never leaves. That
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it is something that is so incredibly difficult or impossible to ever roll back. It only ever gets tight
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it’s like being tough on crime. You know it’s like politicians it can never be less tough on crime. Like it’s the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco same thing like there’s there’s so many factors that just encourage it to build upon itself
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and to increase the workaholism rather than ever tone it back.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco In Apple’s case, it’s pretty clear from anecdotes from the executives
⏹️ ▶️ Marco all the way down to the employees that this is just how the company works, and I don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco think that’s ever going to go away. That is one of the problems that is going to make it hard
⏹️ ▶️ Marco for Apple to attract and retain good talent over time. You mentioned
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a few times so far, John, you mentioned that startups are kind of exempt from this.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And I don’t necessarily think that’s true.
⏹️ ▶️ John Not exempt, but it’s a better fit. To get a startup off the ground,
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s one of those activities that you’re going to have to work yourself to death. But you know it’s not sustained. That’s the type of thing
⏹️ ▶️ John where it’s like, this is not sustainable, we can’t run a company this way if we really want to have sustained
⏹️ ▶️ John productivity, we need to do X. But in a startup, it’s like, sustained productivity of what? We’re going to be out of business in two
⏹️ ▶️ John weeks if we don’t do this thing or get this feature ready for the trade show. Which again is why most startups fail because
⏹️ ▶️ John you try really hard to do this thing. It’s you know it’s a young man’s game. It’s for a short period of time.
⏹️ ▶️ John There’s a clear thing we’re going to try to do this thing and there’s like there’s a time gap on it. You have exit strategies
⏹️ ▶️ John like it is not like I’m going to work at this company for 30 years and this is how I’m going to for 30
⏹️ ▶️ John years I’m going to act as if I’m in the first six months of a startup. That’s why I think you have to match
⏹️ ▶️ John the sort of culture and work ethic and amount of effort to the potential reward
⏹️ ▶️ John and to the expected time horizon. So I’m not saying it’s like good and starts because you know, startups grind
⏹️ ▶️ John up, grind people up and spit them out as well. But that’s what startups are. It is totally inappropriate for
⏹️ ▶️ John a company the size of Amazon, I think.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, but you have to nip that in the bud early, because it builds over time, because Because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco startups typically take on the work culture of their
⏹️ ▶️ Marco founders. That is just what happens. It starts off as the founders, as they grow, the company
⏹️ ▶️ Marco still works the way the founders set it in motion to work, either intentionally or not.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And so I’ve been fortunate that my jobs have… I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ Marco had crunch times here and there, but it’s never been the kind of thing that I hear about from
⏹️ ▶️ Marco other people, like from some of these really horrible game companies or companies like Amazon. It’s never been that bad.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And part of that is because I’ve always stood up for myself. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I’ve always been at companies early enough to have the ability
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to push back a little bit and to stand up for myself a little bit. And it didn’t always work, but most of the time I was able to do
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it. And this is the kind of thing that you can’t just say, well,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know, this one time we got to push really hard, but then we’re going to be healthy again, then
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we’ll hire more help or whatever. Because in reality, the later time,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco oh, we’re going to do this temporarily, but then we’re going to fix it, that time never comes. Because
⏹️ ▶️ Marco after you finish with this horrible death race, there’s another one that comes up right afterwards.
⏹️ ▶️ John But it does come. I think in the natural life cycle, a company is the founders that get the startup off the ground
⏹️ ▶️ John have to be workaholics, otherwise you don’t succeed because that’s the nature of the beast there. But then I think most companies
⏹️ ▶️ John settle into sort of fat, happy middle age where the company
⏹️ ▶️ John carves out places for people who just want to show up and, you know, punch the clock and do a boring
⏹️ ▶️ John job and not be too stressed about it or whatever. Uh, that’s what happens when companies get big. That’s
⏹️ ▶️ John what happened when most companies get big, this phenomenon of gigantic companies that are still
⏹️ ▶️ John run, quote unquote, like startups, where they’re, you know, hungry and working their employees to death
⏹️ ▶️ John is I think a fairly modern phenomenon, I guess not modern, I guess you saw, you know, sweatshops is the
⏹️ ▶️ John oldest, you know, the old slavery and sweatshops, the oldest form of like, we’re just going to grind people up. But in the sort
⏹️ ▶️ John of in our lifetimes, the trajectory was, if you are startup at all, you got
⏹️ ▶️ John out of phase quickly and became a serious business where everything was much more relaxed. And
⏹️ ▶️ John that’s why smaller companies came and ate your lunch in the late 90s, 2000s with disruption
⏹️ ▶️ John and all that stuff. And now I think the new normal is what you’re reacting to is like,
⏹️ ▶️ John isn’t that what always happens? A disruptive startup is started by some workaholic, become
⏹️ ▶️ John successful because those guys work themselves to death. And that workaholic retains control of the company. Another phenomenon
⏹️ ▶️ John that is much more common now than it used to be, retains control of the company and pushes that
⏹️ ▶️ John culture down on all the employees and never lets it go because they’re paranoid that they’re going to get their lunch eaten
⏹️ ▶️ John by the next little disruptive startup. Apple is weird in that it started as a small hungry
⏹️ ▶️ John thing, got fat and happy, and then went from fat and happy with a giant,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, Apple advanced research, what the hell is that thing called? Apple, Apple technology, ATG,
⏹️ ▶️ John Apple technology group, they were at the point where they had people doing like, you know, architecture
⏹️ ▶️ John astronaut stuff, making up these grand plans like Open Doc and Apple
⏹️ ▶️ John technology group ATG. you tipster. Making these pie in the sky things and people
⏹️ ▶️ John who had jobs, they’re just gonna be like an Apple lifer and just hang around and and think grand ideas
⏹️ ▶️ John and maybe noodle on a product or something that might become a product someday and Steve Jobs came back and said
⏹️ ▶️ John we can’t afford that we’re going out of business cut down to the bone and turned it back into a workaholic
⏹️ ▶️ John culture so that is a weird you know Apple has a weird history anyway that is a weird phenomenon but I think it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John what you’re reacting to Marco is the the Amazon, even like Elon Musk, PayPal,
⏹️ ▶️ John Tesla, that kind of model where you never, you never let the company get out of
⏹️ ▶️ John startup phase because that’s how you get disrupted. And you just, no matter how big you get, even if you’re as big as Amazon
⏹️ ▶️ John or Apple, the way you survive is by continuing to act as if you’re in a startup. But
⏹️ ▶️ John the, but it’s not, you’re not anymore. It is an inappropriate environment to, to grind people up
⏹️ ▶️ John like that because you can’t have a company with 30,000 employees, all of whom stand to become multimillionaires
⏹️ ▶️ John by the next quarter. If you if you just hit these numbers. That’s not gonna happen, right? That time in the company’s life has passed.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s weird that when Apple had the second phase, they made a whole bunch of millionaires out of stock options or whatever, but again, if
⏹️ ▶️ John you’re using Apple as your model, okay. Start a company in the 70s, be phenomenally successful, almost
⏹️ ▶️ John go out of business, but not quite,
⏹️ ▶️ John then come around, you know, that’s a tough plan to pull off. So yeah, if you can almost go out of business and then become the biggest company in the world, you’ll make a whole
⏹️ ▶️ John bunch of new millionaires, and Apple did. And so those people probably don’t regret working their fingers to
⏹️ ▶️ John the bone during that phase, but that I think is an aberration, I think the people working the fingers to the bone in Amazon
⏹️ ▶️ John are not going to get the same payoff for their effort of investment.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right, and this is actually, I mean, most startups that come out of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco our industry, you have to be like one of the first, I don’t know, five people
⏹️ ▶️ Marco who work there to really see like a massive payoff in all likelihood. You know, I’ve had
⏹️ ▶️ Marco so many friends in so many companies, so many startups, I know very few of them who have actually had
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a meaningful payout from those stock options. Like it just doesn’t, like the numbers
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are so far against you. It’s not even close. Like the chance, like chances
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are you probably won’t make anything from your stock options. And if you do make something
⏹️ ▶️ Marco from them, it, you might make, you know, maybe an extra, you know, in the tens of
⏹️ ▶️ Marco thousands of dollars, which is nice, but not necessarily worth working yourself to the bone for four years.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s, it doesn’t usually work out the way that they promise. and but it is like the entertainment business,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like they know, like the people who start startups, the people who fund startups, the people who advise
⏹️ ▶️ Marco startups, they all know that this promise is there and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco they sell people on this promise and people come in thinking, man, I’m gonna get stock options, I’m gonna make a ton
⏹️ ▶️ Marco of money. And the fact is, it doesn’t usually work out that way. Unless you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco are one of the founders. You know, if you’re one of the founders, you’ll own enough stock to make it work
⏹️ ▶️ Marco pretty well. But if you come in as employee number 40 or whatever, the
⏹️ ▶️ Marco chances are you’re not gonna make a ton of money on that but you’re still gonna be in this environment
⏹️ ▶️ Marco where it is insane workaholism and everyone is pressuring you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to dedicate your life to the company in every waking hour. And by the way, I don’t think I’ve
⏹️ ▶️ Marco ever seen a startup fail because it didn’t execute quickly enough. Have you ever
⏹️ ▶️ John I’m sorry a lot of them fail for that reason, but I you know I don’t know if that means like
⏹️ ▶️ John you should have gone faster Well, could you have gone faster this gets back to what I was talking about with like is it
⏹️ ▶️ John actually more productive? Past a certain point because yeah, you can do crunch and
⏹️ ▶️ John you can for a certain period of time but and you know, you can go longer if you’re younger
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever, let’s not make any more analogies here, but uh But at a certain
⏹️ ▶️ John point, you get massively diminishing returns and then negative returns. You’re hoping
⏹️ ▶️ John that the life of a startup is short enough that you don’t reach that point, but for big companies on a sustained
⏹️ ▶️ John basis, like, you know, what you’re getting is like, this startup failed,
⏹️ ▶️ John this startup was going to fail anyway, because I can tell you the 17 reasons to start was going to fail, even if they have executed it
⏹️ ▶️ John more quickly. It’s always easy to find lots of reasons why a startup could fail.
⏹️ ▶️ John Startup is the one type of business where sometimes it really does matter. Oh, if you had actually been in that trade show
⏹️ ▶️ John and this other company hadn’t, it could have really changed, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John history of your company. Or if this demo to an important investor had gone better,
⏹️ ▶️ John you would have got that round of funding and instead you didn’t. Like that’s the life of a startup. It always, it’s always balancing on a
⏹️ ▶️ John razor’s edge of something or another. So I, I think that is a real thing happening then.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s just that no one really knows, you know, a lot of it’s just serendipity. A lot of it is, is luck. A lot of it is
⏹️ ▶️ John right place, right time. A lot of it is things you can’t control. But as far as I’ve been able to determine the
⏹️ ▶️ John successful strategy of startups, it’s really, really difficult to, to succeed as a startup
⏹️ ▶️ John with a super laid back attitude, unless you start off with a basically unlimited funds or
⏹️ ▶️ John really long runway and a lot of money and or whatever. But for the most of the startups, starting from zero,
⏹️ ▶️ John you really do have to work hard for a short period of time. And I think that the whole startup phenomenon viewed broadly
⏹️ ▶️ John is lots of small companies trying a bunch of ideas and finding
⏹️ ▶️ John out as fast as possible whether they work or not. Like that’s the whole thing. And so try this, didn’t work. Okay, let’s
⏹️ ▶️ John try another startup. Try this, didn’t work. Or try to do the pivot where you’re trying to pretend you’re the same company where really you’re basically just doing
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey startups at the same
⏹️ ▶️ John time. Because you don’t want to find out three years later that your idea doesn’t work. You want to find out ASAP
⏹️ ▶️ John because you can’t crunch for three years.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, you know the thing to me is in my personal opinion
⏹️ ▶️ Casey The best approach is whatever your job may be just work really really
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hard coming out of school or in Early on in your career work really
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hard and establish yourself and get yourself to the position that you have made you are making enough
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Money that you are comfortable that could mean thirty thousand dollars. It could be a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hundred thousand dollars It could be $300,000, it could be $3 million, however you define comfortable. Get to comfortable.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And once you’re there, then you really shouldn’t have to do a death march
⏹️ ▶️ Casey ever again, or very rarely. I worked very hard
⏹️ ▶️ Casey for a very long, to me, a very long time, given how old I am. And I’m now at a
⏹️ ▶️ Casey company that I rarely have to do a death march. I could probably work harder.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I could probably make more money. I could probably even find a different job where I could work harder
⏹️ ▶️ Casey still and make more money still But in the end of the day we are comfortable And I am able to
⏹️ ▶️ Casey pretty reliably put in about 45 hours a week and then come home to my family and to me anyway
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s more important I Work so that I I can live
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I do not live to work
⏹️ ▶️ John well and also you’re working so that you can crunch at home now because I think also true
⏹️ ▶️ John the best analogy for for the best, the sort of second crunch. Like if you’re just out of school and you really, you
⏹️ ▶️ John want to get your career established and you’re working hard at your job, whatever it is, make sure you’re not working too hard, make sure you’re not being exploited.
⏹️ ▶️ John Then you have a kid and you realize, oh, you can have crunch time at home too. And it’s called an infant or like,
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, twins or even more like, that’s the type of thing where you feel
⏹️ ▶️ John again, that, you know, your child is basically your startup times a million, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John You are willing to crunch for that at the whole point. Like if you decide to have children and this is what you’re going to do with your life, It’s super hard and it’s
⏹️ ▶️ John going to be a lot of work and there’s crunch time and kids and it’s not when the kid is 15 years old, although depending on the kid, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John whatever but yeah infants are hard and you will put in long hours and you Will be
⏹️ ▶️ John you know at the end of the rope you’re open going out of your mind But that’s what you’re signing up for when
⏹️ ▶️ John you have a startup or have a kid or whatever But I think for most people That is a choice that
⏹️ ▶️ John they’re making and they feel like it is well worth it to do for their kids Not so much worth it to do it for Amazon
⏹️ ▶️ John that doesn’t care about them them and will never visit them when they’re old.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So in summary, the best startup is a child. Or the worst startup, depending
⏹️ ▶️ Marco view. And also I’d just like to point out too that, you know, and John
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I still disagree with you on a lot of this, I don’t agree with the assumption in our industry
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that crunch time is required for a startup’s success. Because I have seen
⏹️ ▶️ Marco many counter examples to startups that have succeeded, that do very well that don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco do crazy crunch time burnout workaholism.
⏹️ ▶️ John Well, let’s put it this way. It is a common characteristic of startups that succeed. Whether it’s necessary
⏹️ ▶️ John or not, you could say it’s not really necessary. It just so happens that a lot of the—it’s just a correlation, not a causation.
⏹️ ▶️ John In fact, those ones are succeeding despite the crunch. I’m willing to believe that, but you have to say it’s highly correlated.
⏹️ ▶️ John Like, successful startups, they all have stories about crunch, right?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey So would you say it’s sufficient but not necessary?
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey correlation is
⏹️ ▶️ John pretty darn strong. Like I totally think it’s possible to succeed without it because again, I think
⏹️ ▶️ John even more important than how much you crunch is right idea, right place, right time, right talents. Like some
⏹️ ▶️ John things you can control, some things you can’t control. Those are much more important than how hard did you work?
⏹️ ▶️ John Because the common theme, and I think in all startups is, including the ones that fail, is
⏹️ ▶️ John a bunch of people working really hard. So it’s not correlated with success, it’s just like if you’re in a startup, this is
⏹️ ▶️ John the way they’re done. I think what you’re saying is like, If all the startups got like a big startup convention, they said, let’s just
⏹️ ▶️ John all agree that all startups in the entire world were not gonna drive ourselves into the ground.
⏹️ ▶️ John Would they have the same ratio? I think they’d probably end up having exactly the same ratio of successes. And who
⏹️ ▶️ John the successes are may shift around a little bit, but not in any significant way. And
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s just like a race. Like if everyone in the race decided they were gonna walk instead of run, the
⏹️ ▶️ John race would be slower. But everyone wants to get to the finish line as soon as possible, so they all run. You know what I
⏹️ ▶️ John mean? I don’t think it’s necessary to run to have a race if we all just walked and we’re calm
⏹️ ▶️ John And we just said there’s you can’t have both feet off the ground at the same time The the results of the race would be the same,
⏹️ ▶️ John but it’s human nature You just want to run even if you know you’re gonna get tired faster. I don’t know this is
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, I it just it doesn’t match what I’ve seen like I have seen like to me the the big
⏹️ ▶️ Marco crunch time is Kind of like people who always talk about how busy and stressed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out they are are it’s like like that it’s like a voluntary take on of stress
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and it is you it is almost always self-imposed and optional
⏹️ ▶️ John well but you see everyone else running don’t you see everyone else running and you feel like you have to run too and again if
⏹️ ▶️ John you feel like well if they weren’t running I wouldn’t be running but they are running so I feel like I have to run the
⏹️ ▶️ John root question is would you actually be like if you could run the experiment if you got identical groups
⏹️ ▶️ John of people or something. And like you said, you guys aren’t allowed to crunch and you guys are as gets back to the productivity thing.
⏹️ ▶️ John Wouldn’t they be more productive if they had a good night’s sleep. But I think the the when
⏹️ ▶️ John for a young company, there are events and deadlines, whether self imposed
⏹️ ▶️ John or not that that are significant enough, they can make or break the company is just not true for a larger company. And
⏹️ ▶️ John so by crunching, you can temporarily increase your productivity. So you are
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s like, you know, juicing or taking steroids or whatever, you are temporarily increasing your productivity,
⏹️ ▶️ John knowing full well, or maybe not knowing, but you’re going to find out that your productivity is going to fall off a cliff after a short period of time,
⏹️ ▶️ John because the most important thing right now is who is ready in time for this trade show.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You know what, honestly, I’ve never seen that. I’ve never seen a company
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that had to rush to make a trade show or an investor meeting or anything where that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco was actually really going to be the decision. Like usually, either you have traction or you don’t,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco either you’re product is rooted in a good idea and is finding an audience or it isn’t.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco And usually it doesn’t come down to one date, one deadline, one meeting, one presentation.
⏹️ ▶️ John Not just one deadline, but use your career at Tumblr as an example. It may not have been the crunchiest
⏹️ ▶️ John of crunches, but there was a time early on when you were worried about servers going down
⏹️ ▶️ John and you would get paged in the middle of the night or whatever. That’s basically a work-life balance that you would never accept
⏹️ ▶️ John now. But had you not been there to fix some MySQL problem in the middle of the night or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John And Tumblr got the reputation for the site that was always down. That could have really affected, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John Tumblr might not have taken off as there’s lots of other sites that were similar to Tumblr. And what you know, that type of thing
⏹️ ▶️ John of like, oh, it’s, you know, it has bugs, or it’s always down or it doesn’t work right, or the signup,
⏹️ ▶️ John like, not that you were killing yourself to do it. But certainly you were working really hard during that time, because there
⏹️ ▶️ John was only a few people. And it’s not like you have this giant staff of people to watch all the servers, it was you, right?
⏹️ ▶️ John That is what I’m talking about. I’m not talking about like that. You didn’t sleep for seven days straight to make some trade show. Everyone’s
⏹️ ▶️ John crunch is different. But during that time when it was a small group of people trying to keep this site
⏹️ ▶️ John that is growing incredibly fast up and running so that you could take advantage of the traction that you had,
⏹️ ▶️ John that was an important thing to do. And if you had not done that and said, you know what, I’m going to ignore
⏹️ ▶️ John that page and I’m only going to work from nine to five and I’ll bring the servers back up in the morning, that would have
⏹️ ▶️ John materially affected the prospects of Tumblr success and probably would have gotten
⏹️ ▶️ John you booted out of the company. Because that’s like, that’s like, look, there’s only a couple of us here. You can’t
⏹️ ▶️ John just say I’ll fix the server in the morning because your work life balance is important. You have to do it and you felt responsible
⏹️ ▶️ John for doing it and you wanted to do it and you were invested in doing it and you did it and Tumblr is successful. But don’t you think there’s a connection
⏹️ ▶️ John between that? There
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a connection, but I think it’s a relatively loose one. Like Tumblr was taking off whether
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you know whether I had the site up or not and if I took an hour to fix the site
⏹️ ▶️ Marco or five minutes to fix the site didn’t really matter
⏹️ ▶️ John but you couldn’t come in you couldn’t come in the next morning and do it you couldn’t say you know what I’ll look at that tomorrow
⏹️ ▶️ Marco sometimes we sometimes problems around that we didn’t even know about sometimes our monitoring system failed us and we weren’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco alerted to problems and things were down for hours and it was fine like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I mean like I always point to this example back then like Flickr was down for like a whole four day weekend
⏹️ ▶️ Marco one time like in you know 2008 ish a week later everyone forgot
⏹️ ▶️ John yeah I mean Twitter is a good example too where they were down all the time but I think that’s after they crossed the hump
⏹️ ▶️ John like you know I mean you don’t know once you’re on the other side of the hump there’s some certain inevitability that takes on it’s just that
⏹️ ▶️ John like when you’re on the the near side of the hump not the far side of the hump you’re never gonna get over you’re never gonna
⏹️ ▶️ John become the thing that that people talk about being down for four days unless you
⏹️ ▶️ John in the beginning have some minimum level of dealing with growth in a way that lets you just
⏹️ ▶️ John start, you know, taking off like I mean, again, just think about how you worked. Was it all just
⏹️ ▶️ John a mistake that you were putting in those long hours and worrying about things? And if you had just known if you
⏹️ ▶️ John had known more than you would have just been like, just chill, don’t worry about it. Don’t work such long hours in the company would have been equally
⏹️ ▶️ John successful. Were you just running because you saw everyone else running? saying that you should have just been working from
⏹️ ▶️ John nine to five. And in the end, your sort of hard work and dedication to making sure things were
⏹️ ▶️ John up all the time was a fool’s foolish expenditure of energy and you should have just like if you had known then when you
⏹️ ▶️ John know now you would have just worked from nine to five confident in the fact that the success of the company would have
⏹️ ▶️ John been equal. You could be right but the bottom line is you ran because you saw everyone else running and I think that will
⏹️ ▶️ John continue to happen.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Most of the time I did just work you know, nine to five or you know, whatever, we might been like 10 to 7 or whatever 10
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to 6 but like you know most of the time that’s all I did I was not programming at home for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco tumblr ever like that hardly that happened maybe twice like ever just because I had to quickly fix a bug or something but like
⏹️ ▶️ Marco it like that hardly ever happened that was not at all normal um most for the most
⏹️ ▶️ Marco part I maintained a very healthy work-life balance with tumblr I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you were sleeping next to your phone weren’t you yes but that was a lot of that honestly, was self-imposed
⏹️ ▶️ Marco stress. And that was mostly because we took too long to hire
⏹️ ▶️ Marco a sysadmin, which was partly my fault, because I kept saying, you know what, I still got this. It
⏹️ ▶️ Marco was certainly partly my fault.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Steven But if you didn’t have that drive, that self-imposed stress, don’t you think
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that someone, be it David or someone else, would eventually get to the point of, you know what,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you either need to start sleeping with with your phone or you need to hire someone to sleep with their phone. Like
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if you didn’t have that, if you weren’t as, as proud of your work as you
⏹️ ▶️ Casey are, then I think it would have caused problems.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’s possible. I mean, you know, it’s hard to know retrospectively, you know, what, what would have been different, you know, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we, we at Tumblr in those early days, when it was me, just me and David, we did not have a
⏹️ ▶️ Marco culture of workaholism. Really. David pushed himself a lot harder than I pushed myself, but
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I wasn’t really penalized for that for the most part. You know, he would be thinking about it constantly
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because that’s just David. You know, he would be thinking about anything constantly. Like whatever his work
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is the rest of his life, he’ll be thinking about it constantly. He’s just that kind of person. But
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I try to have a more separated balance between home and work
⏹️ ▶️ Marco and, you know, my side projects or my family versus my job or whatever.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think your scale may be calibrated strangely because the amount of time and effort you put
⏹️ ▶️ John into your work now is probably still higher than most people who are in those fat and happy jobs.
⏹️ ▶️ John Not even close. Again, maybe you haven’t spent enough time in
⏹️ ▶️ John the fat and happy companies to see exactly how little work some…
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe you’re not as big a workaholic as David, but you have a higher than
⏹️ ▶️ John average drive to do things. I mean, I think Casey would agree on that.
⏹️ ▶️ John The amount of stuff that you have to do and the amount of stuff that you actually do, you need to be doing stuff. You
⏹️ ▶️ John need to have lots of things that you’re doing and you work hard at them harder than you actually need to work at them. So I think your scale may
⏹️ ▶️ John be off a little bit. And I’m willing to believe that you don’t work as hard as David because, you know, Tumblr
⏹️ ▶️ John is his thing and you were brought on, right? And so, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John the successful companies that are founded by workaholics or whatever, but in the grand
⏹️ ▶️ John scheme of things, like, I mean, and again, it still gets back to your question like, does that mean you had to?
⏹️ ▶️ John Maybe, maybe not. Like you can’t run the experiment, you can’t go back in time and say, I’m going to do Tumblr
⏹️ ▶️ John again, but I’m going to do it differently. I’m going to hire that system in earlier, I’m going to just have a
⏹️ ▶️ John laid back attitude and everything will be fine. Because really, that’s not what matters in the end, what matters
⏹️ ▶️ John is, we have the right idea, we have the right design, we have the right you know, so many other things
⏹️ ▶️ John we were there, our timing was right. You know, the choices we made about what the product was, we made the right choices
⏹️ ▶️ John about product design stuff like there are so many things you know we made the right choices about when to take funding
⏹️ ▶️ John when not to take funding should we you know you could ask the same thing like mark zuckerberg with the whole the tortured
⏹️ ▶️ John history of uh facebook and how so many companies tried to acquire it and how he said no and how that could
⏹️ ▶️ John have been a terrible mistake and how hard did he work and how hard did he work the people under him and all that other stuff
⏹️ ▶️ John uh it’s difficult to say but you know whether it’s necessary or not it seems to be a characteristic
⏹️ ▶️ John of the startup that uh it kind of in the same way that it’s a characteristic of the games industry
⏹️ ▶️ John and the same way you could say that it’s not necessary and it shouldn’t be done but it is what we have now and
⏹️ ▶️ John to change it I think you have to change I don’t know how you change it for startups for games industry you
⏹️ ▶️ John have to change the incentives or maybe you have to have workers that unionize or maybe you have to have that backlash that happened
⏹️ ▶️ John a little while ago with EA uh you know the EA spouses and all the EA employees
⏹️ ▶️ John getting complaining about getting ground up by the machine uh that I think this this New York
⏹️ ▶️ John Times story about Amazon as part of that phenomenon, raising awareness about this issue among the pampered white collar
⏹️ ▶️ John workers so the pampered white collar workers can have angry blog posts and
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey write uh, write a
⏹️ ▶️ John Medium post about it just hiding Henry Ford. I don’t know, maybe that’s the system working.
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⏹️ ▶️ John One more bit on a workaholism before I move on because I don’t want people to think that Workaholism
⏹️ ▶️ John is all bad. I was thinking of you know, the times that I have various places that I’ve worked where I have
⏹️ ▶️ John I was thinking one particular instance when I came home on a weekend and it was a programming problem Database
⏹️ ▶️ John sign programming combo problem that I had been working on all week and had had come up with a solution that kind of worked
⏹️ ▶️ John But I wasn’t satisfied with it And I think I woke up like on Saturday morning and I had a good idea
⏹️ ▶️ John for how to do it I think I’d finally figured it out and I just rewrote it all in a weekend
⏹️ ▶️ John Why does that happen like part of workaholism among the founders and among everybody else is that if you have
⏹️ ▶️ John a job that you? Love doing if you love programming You will find yourself thinking about during your idle
⏹️ ▶️ John time again walking the dog taking a shower And sometimes you know, this is all pre kids if you
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, if you don’t have kids again If you don’t have kids you don’t realize how much free time you have
⏹️ ▶️ John so Enjoy, you know youth is wasted on the young and free time is wasted on people with no kids
⏹️ ▶️ John that you actually have a lot of time, even if you’re married. I was married at the time, but
⏹️ ▶️ John there is enough time for you to like, to spend one weekend, you know, reasonable
⏹️ ▶️ John hours stopping for meals, not staying up late or anything, but just like, you know what, this weekend I’m gonna do this thing. And why did I do it?
⏹️ ▶️ John I guess I was invested in the company. It was a small-ish company that had been bought by a larger company, but it was a bunch of people who were
⏹️ ▶️ John all friends, who were all working on a product and a thing that we really believed in. This is when I worked in the
⏹️ ▶️ John place that did eBooks and everything. It was something that we all believed in and it was important to get this done.
⏹️ ▶️ John And there wasn’t any sort of external deadline. There wasn’t any reason this had to be done. I had already done
⏹️ ▶️ John it at work. I just had a better idea for it and I enjoy programming. So what I bet, getting back to the Marco lifestyle,
⏹️ ▶️ John what I did that weekend for fun was I programmed. Programming is fun if you’re a programmer and you like programming.
⏹️ ▶️ John Was I a sucker for doing work on the weekend? No, but it
⏹️ ▶️ John really has to be on your own terms. Like, so I think that’s the difference where if you feel like
⏹️ ▶️ John you have to do this to keep your job or you’re being pressured to do it or like the culture
⏹️ ▶️ John at work is making you put in hours that you don’t wanna work or there’s an expectation that you’re gonna do it on a weekend, no one had
⏹️ ▶️ John any expectation I was gonna rewrite this perfectly good working thing that I had written during the week that I’m gonna rewrite it all on a
⏹️ ▶️ John weekend because I had a better idea. I wanted to do it and it was fun. And so that’s like the light side
⏹️ ▶️ John of this where if you are lucky enough to have a job that you enjoy and your quote unquote
⏹️ ▶️ John leisure time activity the weekend is to do more programming, even for your job that no one asked
⏹️ ▶️ John you to do because it will make you feel better. And you’ll come in the next week and be like, finally, I can delete that crap that I wrote last
⏹️ ▶️ John week and replace it with this thing that I rewrote entirely in a weekend. And it’s so much cleaner and so much nicer. And I have so
⏹️ ▶️ John much more confidence that it’s bug free. And it’s easier to expand in these ways. Like, that’s
⏹️ ▶️ John a fun thing to do. If you’re a programmer, again, we should all be lucky enough to have the type of job that we actually enjoy doing.
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s, I guess, probably rare, because how How often do you work in a company that you feel that personally invested
⏹️ ▶️ John in? How often do you want to do that? The farthest I get from it these days is probably, I mean,
⏹️ ▶️ John I will find myself thinking about work problems during the weekend in the shower, drifting off to sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John I just usually save those ideas until I go back into the office on Monday to work on them because I feel like, you know what, they get enough
⏹️ ▶️ John of my time. And really, when you have kids, you can’t like, you know, it’s a
⏹️ ▶️ John it’s a phase in life. Like, what would you rather be doing? I can’t imagine I guess the closest
⏹️ ▶️ John I was doing my reviews where I would carve out time to do reviews But even that I felt like boy
⏹️ ▶️ John if I wasn’t getting paid for these reviews I wouldn’t I would have stopped doing them a long time ago, right? So there always has to be a balance
⏹️ ▶️ John So anyway, I just didn’t want to like make it seem like if you are working really hard at your job and bringing
⏹️ ▶️ John your work Home with you. It’s not always bad Sometimes you’re choosing to do it and then and then
⏹️ ▶️ John it feels it feels better even though in effect. It’s the same thing Oh, you are you’re
⏹️ ▶️ John basically doing unpaid work for the man on your own time. You’re a sucker.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I agree There’s definitely been times that I’ve not been able to get a work problem out of my head and the best way to get out Of
⏹️ ▶️ Casey my head is to get it out of my head and and put it on paper so to speak and just do
⏹️ ▶️ John Marco cheats on and Marco’s version of this is that when his boss lets him off for the weekend Sometimes he rewrites things
⏹️ ▶️ John and go just because it’s fun. Of course his boss is also him, but it’s a different him It’s like the working during
⏹️ ▶️ John the weekend and then it’s like you know what I can rewrite this all and go and he comes in And he’s so you can tell your
⏹️ ▶️ John boss later. I wrote on go over the weekend. It’s awesome. It’s like oh, that was nice You didn’t have to do that
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Thanks a lot to our three sponsors this week Harry’s Warby Parker and hover and we
⏹️ ▶️ Marco will see you next week week.
⏹️ ▶️ John You can follow them at C-A-S-E-Y-L-I-S-S
⏹️ ▶️ Marco That’s Casey Liss,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco A-N-T Marco Armin, S-I-R-A-C-U-S-A
⏹️ ▶️ Casey accidental, they didn’t mean to
⏹️ ▶️ John ♪ Are you accidental? ♪ ♪ Accidental! ♪ Tech Podcasts, so
⏹️ ▶️ John Don’t even know if you did that on a weekend, but of course time has no meaning in your
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco anyway Yeah, and
⏹️ ▶️ John until I don’t meant just school then weekend weekdays will suddenly have meaning again.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Oh, yeah No, I can’t wait for that to begin because that we had a nice routine going by the way. I I think that you
⏹️ ▶️ Marco You are probably overestimating how much I actually work like time wise
⏹️ ▶️ John well nowadays I know but I’m just saying like you Let’s put it this way you put in more effort than
⏹️ ▶️ John I think I would put in if
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey I was in your position
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know Casey can Do you think if you were in Marcos position in life, would you
⏹️ ▶️ John put in as much effort as he does on the various projects that he does or would you slack off more?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t, I honestly don’t know. Half of me wants to say I would slack off 10 times more and the other half of me
⏹️ ▶️ Casey says I think you might be overestimating how much time Marcos spends sitting in front of the computer.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco No, I mean, you guys, you are both smart, curious programmers. You would get
⏹️ ▶️ Marco bored senseless if you weren’t using your brain.
⏹️ ▶️ John Oh yeah, I’m not saying you’re doing it like to be a magnanimous. It’s the same with all of us. Your brain
⏹️ ▶️ John will eat itself if you don’t give it something to do. And that’s how workaholics feel too. Elon Musk
⏹️ ▶️ John feels exactly the same way. He’s like, look, if I don’t do spaceships and electric cars, my brain will eat
⏹️ ▶️ John itself. I have to do this. It’s not like, it’s barely even a choice. That is the type of person they are.
⏹️ ▶️ John I just feel like that you have more, I have a higher capacity for doing nothing than
⏹️ ▶️ John you do, I think. Honed over many, many years. Like the idea, like you said,
⏹️ ▶️ John going to go off on a vacation and sit on the beach and do nothing, I’m pretty darn good at that at this point.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Right, see, I can’t do that. I’m going to the beach next week. I’m planning, I’m bringing
⏹️ ▶️ Marco my laptop. The idea of going to the beach and doing nothing, that sounds awful.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I would enjoy about maybe two days of that and then be like, all right, I got to turn my brain back
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I have a much higher tolerance for it. I can go much longer. I agree that I couldn’t do it year
⏹️ ▶️ John round because my brain would eat itself too. I would be building tiny machines out of sand, you know,
⏹️ ▶️ John doing something right. So we’re all like that to some degree. It’s just a question of how,
⏹️ ▶️ John what kind of tolerance you have for it. And I feel like like I, as part of it as being old where you’re like,
⏹️ ▶️ John I did all the working hard stuff and I still do it. And like it just like just a plain old boring 40 hour
⏹️ ▶️ John program or work week leaves me more like mentally
⏹️ ▶️ John tired. And like the, the, the beautiful thing about vacations is you can get away from all your responsibilities
⏹️ ▶️ John except keeping your children alive and feeding yourself, right? And just have 20 minutes to
⏹️ ▶️ John sit on a beach and just like, just look at the clouds go by, right? And that,
⏹️ ▶️ John that, that I feel like recharges me so that I can go back to my regular life.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t think I could do it year round, but as I get older, my tolerance for doing nothing gets greater.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yeah, I, um, I, I, we’ve talked about this on the show. I used to hate
⏹️ ▶️ Casey going to the beach, which I only ever did a handful of times in my life. And as
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I’ve gotten slightly older, and Marco and I are the same age, I found that if
⏹️ ▶️ Casey you put some sort of tent-like object on the beach, so I’m not sitting in direct sunlight, and put a good book in my
⏹️ ▶️ Casey hands, I could do that easily a week. That being said, when I was at the beach,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what, last month, I definitely spent a few hours programming towards the end
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of the trip because I had an itch. I decided I wanted to scratch and it couldn’t get out of my head.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, I don’t think I’ve ever programmed on vacation But I think part of that has to do with like the environment
⏹️ ▶️ John is not good for that Cuz
⏹️ ▶️ Marco right you don’t have your big monitor you could spread out like you talked about last week You’re programming in a
⏹️ ▶️ John phone booth. No, there’s a bunch of other people there There’s a bunch of other people there and they want to go places and do things and
⏹️ ▶️ John kids are running around
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Yeah, that’s it. No, I mean like for me like if I’m gonna be doing something with my brain on vacation
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Usually that’s when I will write or you know I’ll do other things I
⏹️ ▶️ Marco won’t program necessarily or I’ll program very little or I’ll do some kind of satellite project
⏹️ ▶️ Marco like the website but usually that’s when I will write blog posts best is when I’m
⏹️ ▶️ Marco when I’m away because then I want to use my brain but I don’t want to do any programming because I would prefer
⏹️ ▶️ Marco to just do it on my big nice home computer.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yep see this is why I refuse to learn how to drink coffee and why I’m kind of glad I don’t have
⏹️ ▶️ Casey a 90-inch monitor at home.
⏹️ ▶️ John It goes in your mouth Casey.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Oh, that’s the trick. Damn it. I don’t want to get to the point where I can’t
⏹️ ▶️ Casey function until I’ve had a cup of coffee or I get a headache or I get
⏹️ ▶️ Casey cranky or I just don’t think that things feel right. I don’t want that. So I’m glad that
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I don’t like coffee. And additionally, I’m glad that I’m used to a 15 inch laptop.
⏹️ ▶️ John I don’t know. You’ve just broken that analogy that the coffee thing, addiction to
⏹️ ▶️ John substances, I can see something but I believe there is no physical
⏹️ ▶️ John addiction component to our screens. I’m pretty sure that it’s not. It’s just merely a
⏹️ ▶️ John preference and a convenience. It’s like, you know, like, if I get
⏹️ ▶️ John too used to not being half immersed in water all day, I’ll want to be dry every time I go to sleep.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey So that’s why I sleep outside on the lawn.
⏹️ ▶️ John, Casey like, come on, what are you doing?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey My point is, I feel only ever so slightly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey handcuffed by not having a second monitor when I’m developing. Whereas you feel
⏹️ ▶️ Casey completely neutered if you don’t have a 25 plus inch display as you’re
⏹️ ▶️ John It’s really convenient. It’s like, you know, it’s convenient to have a room that fits your bed
⏹️ ▶️ John with more than six inches around all sides and the walls because then you can walk around the bed to get onto it.
⏹️ ▶️ John you know, like, and it’s like, I don’t want to get used to that. I want to make sure my bedroom just has one foot
⏹️ ▶️ John alleys around the bed and I’ll shimmy through it because if I get used to a bigger room, then when I go someplace else I won’t be used to it.
⏹️ ▶️ John I think your analogy is breaking down there. Anyway, you should be leaning on the fact that I don’t want
⏹️ ▶️ John to be tethered to a desk, I want to do my computing, like you said, sitting next to Aaron on the couch
⏹️ ▶️ John or whatever. Those are the advantages you should be playing with laptops, not saying that really you want to
⏹️ ▶️ John force yourself to use a 15 inch monitor even though it’s less convenient. So I think you’re barking up the wrong tree with
⏹️ ▶️ John, Marco why you like
⏹️ ▶️ John laptops. I think there are reasons, but these are not them.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Fair enough, fair enough.
Post-show: Casey’s Macs
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Speaking of, Casey, have you thought any more about your computer decision that we talked
⏹️ ▶️ Marco about last week? Have you thought any more about that since then?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Well, to be fair, that was all of three days ago as we record this.
⏹️ ▶️ Casey illusion, lose last week, go ahead. Oh, right, right, right, right. It was easily a week ago and I’ve thought long
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and hard. No, not really, I don’t know. The problem I’ve come to is,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think all three potential machines, a Mac Mini, a 5K,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey and a MacBook Pro, all three of them. a Mac Pro. No. All three of them, not four
⏹️ ▶️ Casey of them, all three of them have definite advantages. They really honestly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey do. And I can’t figure out which criterion
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I think is the most important. Is it having something that can move? Is it
⏹️ ▶️ Casey having something beautiful to look at? Is it having something that I can barely see that’s stuffed
⏹️ ▶️ Casey in the corner that I only really use remotely or very rarely physically?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey And I just, I can’t figure out which one I want. And I think a couple of people have said this
⏹️ ▶️ Casey on Twitter via feedback, but I think really what I’m going to do is, which is what I had planned
⏹️ ▶️ Casey last week, is I’m just going to sit around and see what comes in the fall with regard
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to MacBook Pro updates and potentially any other kind of update and just
⏹️ ▶️ Casey see if that sways me one way. Like let’s say for the sake of discussion that I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey decided I really wanted a 12-inch Retina a Mac and the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey MacBook One wasn’t out yet. Well, you know, then fast forward to the MacBook One is out and all my problems
⏹️ ▶️ Casey are solved. Maybe there’ll be some other thing, some feature that I’ll really, really love in the
⏹️ ▶️ Casey new MacBook Pro, or maybe even a new Mac mini or the new 5K iMac. And I’ll say, you know
⏹️ ▶️ Casey what, darn it. That’s it. That’s for me. But sitting here now, I just, I really don’t
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Well, first of all, as I said, like, suppose a new Mac mini comes. It’ll
⏹️ ▶️ Marco still suck. Like, it’ll still be
⏹️ ▶️ Marco, John a bad deal. It still won’t. Still be $1,000.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco It’ll still be at least $1,000 for a good spec. It’ll still not have very good options.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco If you look at the ones that we have today,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you max out at two cores. You can barely get an i7. You max
⏹️ ▶️ Marco out at one terabyte built in, only then if you do the fusion. The options,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you can’t even spec out higher if you wanted to, Unless you get into the iFixit territory of opening it up and putting
⏹️ ▶️ Marco your own crap in there. Even that’s becoming harder and harder. The Mac Mini
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is so… And I say this having one here and being very happy with it, but for your purposes,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think, again, only if it’s going to be used as a server only. Does that make sense?
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think… Thinking about it more, as I did the edit, I was thinking about it more.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I think what you should probably do is get a 15-inch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Retina MacBook Pro
⏹️ ▶️ Casey again. That’s the most likely outcome.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Because the big thing is the way you work right now. If you work the way I work, where you always
⏹️ ▶️ Marco work in the same place in the house, where you don’t take a laptop on the couch and do real work, like if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re always working in your office upstairs, then get a 5K. Fine, done.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco But because that isn’t how you live, and you made a good point about wanting to be with Aaron at night
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you’re working, that makes a lot of sense and that’s something that your home office can’t offer you. So
⏹️ ▶️ Marco if that’s the way you work at home or compute at home, then I think a 15-inch
⏹️ ▶️ Marco is probably the best option for that because for anyone else, for
⏹️ ▶️ Marco other people, for people who don’t program for a living or for people who have lower needs,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco that would probably be too big. Then in that case, I would say get the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro
⏹️ ▶️ Marco because for most people, is like the nice middle of the road cover everything kind of computer.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco For you I’d say your needs are higher, go for the 15. And I think
⏹️ ▶️ Marco the 15 inch MacBook Pro or the 13 inch, but in general, the MacBook
⏹️ ▶️ Marco Pro slash MacBook Air range is the default option for if
⏹️ ▶️ Marco you don’t know what your needs will be, just get one of those. And
⏹️ ▶️ Marco in your case, you don’t know what your needs will be. If you knew what your needs would be and your needs matched my needs,
⏹️ ▶️ Marco again, get the 5K, done. But because that’s a big unknown for you still, and
⏹️ ▶️ Marco even if it was firmly nailed down, it probably wouldn’t line up much with my needs and with the way
⏹️ ▶️ Marco I use mine or the way John uses his. So, you know, because you don’t work the way
⏹️ ▶️ Marco we do and you don’t know how you’re going to be working over the next four years, I would say
⏹️ ▶️ Marco just wait for the Skylake updates and then get the updated 15-inch. Yeah,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’s the most likely outcome. The 5K, when we started the conversation last week,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I did not even want to entertain the 5K as an option, but the more we talked about it, the more
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I thought, you know what, if I dedicate
⏹️ ▶️ Casey myself to only being at my desk, that really does make sense. And to be,
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if I’m honest with you guys right now, you know, my current personal machine, which admittedly
⏹️ ▶️ Casey has a platter hard drive, which obviously changes whether or not it’s usable, um, as compared
⏹️ ▶️ Casey to my work laptop, which has an S an SSD, but my personal machine
⏹️ ▶️ Casey today, the wifi has been off for months and it’s been connected via ethernet because I
⏹️ ▶️ Casey it’s, and it’s a 15 inch Mac, but pro because I never move it because I always will just grab my work
⏹️ ▶️ Casey computer because whether I want to work or play, it has everything I want on it. And so if we
⏹️ ▶️ Casey can get over the separation of church and state, if you will, I’m
⏹️ ▶️ Casey going to have this laptop, my work laptop, pretty much regardless. Even
⏹️ ▶️ Casey if I left this job and got a different job or even if I left this job and worked for myself, I would probably
⏹️ ▶️ Casey end up getting a laptop regardless of whatever other computers
⏹️ ▶️ Casey I have at home. There is a compelling argument for the 5K iMac as
⏹️ ▶️ Casey much as I really don’t want to entertain it because I think it’s ridiculous and it’s a stupid piece of furniture.
⏹️ ▶️ John Yeah, you got to do what I did with my HDTV and cut out a piece of cardboard the size the 5k iMac and
⏹️ ▶️ John stick it in where you’re gonna put it in your house and then and then see like does this block the morning sunlight
⏹️ ▶️ John that I like when I’m eating my breakfast does this look ugly does is
⏹️ ▶️ John it visible from the street and it looks weird like you know pieces of furniture that big you have
⏹️ ▶️ John to figure out if there’s a place for them that won’t mess with your Feng Shui or however you pronounce
⏹️ ▶️ Casey cool John when are you departing tomorrow
⏹️ ▶️ Casey Yep. You’re gonna send me all sorts of pictures probably and I’m gonna be super jealous and I’m gonna hate you.
⏹️ ▶️ Marco We’ll see. Can you have your family take pictures of you and then send those to us?
⏹️ ▶️ Casey that’d be the best.
⏹️ ▶️ John don’t take, I’m the only person who takes pictures of anything. It’s so bad that now when we go on vacations with the rest
⏹️ ▶️ John of my family, my parents and sister and brothers, they just let me take pictures for everybody now.
⏹️ ▶️ John Which basically means that there’s a lot of pictures of my kids and a lot of pictures of my wife
⏹️ ▶️ John and not a lot of pictures of me and a medium amount of pictures of everybody else.