Decision Fatigue & Why I Do My Most Important Work First

The concept of decision fatigue gained popularity in 2011 with an article in the New York Times Magazine. Essentially, our willpower decreases throughout the day as we make all sorts of large and small decisions. Lifehacker did a good job of summing it up at the time: Each decision you make and the more choices you make throughout the day, the harder it gets for your brain to continue to make decisions. The result is that towards the end of the day when you’re low… Continue reading

7/25/17

Chargebacks Are Evolving, and It’s Not Getting Better for Online Retailers

Businessweek recently ran the article It’s Easier Than Ever to Dispute a Credit Card Charge, and Retailers Hate It. There were a few particularly interesting nuggets that confirmed some of the things that we’ve suspected were happening: [T]echnology, along with a change in rules by payment networks such as those run by Visa Inc. and Mastercard Inc., is making that system a bigger headache for merchants, who are often left to eat the cost. Besides automating claims, banks have updated their mobile apps so users… Continue reading

7/18/17

We’re #21 on the Albany Business Review’s 2017 List of Fastest-Growing Companies

We were recently named to The Albany Business Review’s 2017 Fastest-Growing Companies List (list is partially behind a paywall). This is our second straight year on the list. They changed the list a bit this year – it was based upon 3-year growth instead of 5-year growth, and it contained the top 50 local businesses instead of the top 30. Nevertheless, we came in at #21 with 48.37% growth! We tend to fly under the radar compared to other local businesses, which is totally fine… Continue reading

7/11/17

Saying No More Often, Juicero’s Dysfunction, & Plex’s Bold Plan – Link Roundup

Articles Q&A: Melinda Gates on the World’s Missing Data About Women – I really enjoyed this Q&A: There’s a line right at the end of your letter that says, “The future will surprise the pessimists.” Despite the things that people read in the headlines, the world is getting better. Poverty has been cut in half—in half—in 25 years. We talk about the fact that 122 million children are alive because of the malaria vaccine work that’s happened and bed nets getting out there. I travel… Continue reading

7/3/17

“Trading” Your 20’s For Your 30’s

David Heinemeier Hansson recently wrote a post about trickle-down workaholism in startups that got me thinking. I don’t have many career regrets, but if I do have one it’s that I spent most of my twenties working with the mentality that I was overworking myself now so that I wouldn’t have to overwork myself later. I thought I could “trade” my twenties for a more enjoyable thirties (and forties and fifties and so on). I worked 7 days a week, typically very long and very… Continue reading

6/27/17

Turning My Amazon Fire HD 8 Tablet Into a Retro Gaming Machine

Back in college my friends and I would pass the time during class by playing classic NES, SNES, and SEGA Genesis games with emulators on our laptops. The recent popularity of the NES Classic Edition has resulted in a revival of classic 8 bit and 16 bit emulation. I’ve long kept emulators on my Android phones (I prefer the ones made by Robert Broglia), but after purchasing my Amazon Fire HD 8 tablet last year I got the idea that I would really enjoy being… Continue reading

6/20/17

Letting Go to Grow: Why Delegating “Ownership” Matters

I accepted my first and only full-time engineering job at Schick with a few months left in my last semester of college. I had done a nine-month internship at the company. But the main reason that I decided to go back without even interviewing anywhere else had nothing to do with my previous experience there. It was my new boss. The department that he ran didn’t exist when I had interned there. He was young, energetic, and extraordinarily intelligent. We hit it off when I… Continue reading

6/13/17

Z.ips.ME 2.0 – Why I Updated Our Dormant Open Source URL Shortener

A Brief History Lesson Back in 2009 I created an open source URL shortener called Z.ips.ME as an alternative to using bit.ly and other services on Twitter. At the time, Twitter counted the characters in a link against your 140 characters, so link shortening was a big deal. I updated it a few times, the last being in April of 2010, and then…nothing. In 2011 Twitter rolled out their t.co URL shortener, minimizing the usefulness of a project like Z.ips.ME. Every link now counts as… Continue reading

6/6/17

6 Great Podcasts I Recently Started Listening To

Last week I updated the list of podcasts that I listen to. In doing so, I realized that list has changed quite a bit since 2014, particularly the last six months or so. Here are some of my new favorites: Daily Tech Headlines – all the day’s tech headlines in less than 10 minutes with Tom Merritt. This is the shorter version of Daily Tech News Show. I find that it’s the perfect quick overview of what’s going on in the tech world with no… Continue reading

5/31/17

Applying “HELL YEAH Or No”

Derek Sivers has a very short, very popular, and very timeless post entitled No “yes.” Either “HELL YEAH!” or “no.” The gist of it is: When deciding whether to do something, if you feel anything less than “Wow! That would be amazing! Absolutely! Hell yeah!” — then say “no.” Derek discussed this in more detail in this great Tim Ferriss Show podcast if you’re interested in learning more about how he came up with this approach. He does mention that when you’re just starting out… Continue reading

5/23/17