"I think how you treat your struggling investments says more about you than how many billion dollar exits you have had. You need both to be successful in the VC business, of course. The latter metric defines your selection acumen. The former defines your empathy acumen. And when I pick people to work with, I look for the latter."
Why is this incredibly tight-lipped company suddenly showing off prototypes? The answer is that these drones were not designed to carry packages, but to give a lift to Amazon’s image.
For one thing, today is Cyber Monday, the day when everyone goes shopping online. Amazon somehow got CBS and 60 Minutes to create a 14-minute free ad spot for Amazon on the eve of this huge shopping day."
This was the first thing I thought too when I saw that report last night. “Wow, good timing Jeff.” Not that this kind of thing doesn’t happen all the time, but it’s certainly a glaring example of expert PR strategy since Amazon’s M.O. is to be so incredibly opaque.
The two-drones-with-one-stone tactic of lifting Amazon’s visibility (in name and perceived quality as a forward-thinking company) on the eve of the biggest online shopping day of the year, and pushing back on the scary picture Brad Stone painted in The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon, was pretty deftly executed, if that’s what actually happened here.
Dan’s made the point that CBS’ and 60 Minutes' credibility is undermined by their being taken on this puff piece, but since this is kind of common place, and Amazon just happened to execute it perfectly, it seems like it's just more obvious because its Amazon. Also, Charlie Rose, much as I love him, is no stranger to the softball. Also also, DRONES!
"For more than 50 years now, we in the United States have been gradually reducing children’s opportunities to play, and the same is true in many other countries. In his book Children at Play: An American History (2007), Howard Chudacoff refers to the first half of the 20th century as the ‘golden age’ of children’s free play. By about 1900, the need for child labour had declined, so children had a good deal of free time. But then, beginning around 1960 or a little before, adults began chipping away at that freedom by increasing the time that children had to spend at schoolwork and, even more significantly, by reducing children’s freedom to play on their own, even when they were out of school and not doing homework. Adult-directed sports for children began to replace ‘pickup’ games; adult-directed classes out of school began to replace hobbies; and parents’ fears led them, ever more, to forbid children from going out to play with other kids, away from home, unsupervised. There are lots of reasons for these changes but the effect, over the decades, has been a continuous and ultimately dramatic decline in children’s opportunities to play and explore in their own chosen ways."
"People underestimate how small big ideas were when they first got started. Microsoft’s first product was an implementation of the BASIC programming language for a machine called Altair. There were probably a few thousand users, total. If those guys had presented that idea on Demo Day, investors would have laughed at them. But it turns out, everything has some adjacent territory, if you’re energetic enough. It’s OK to start out with a small idea. People are bad at looking at seeds and guessing what size tree will grow out of them."
"Nike sells a commodity, they sell shoes. And yet when you think of Nike you feel something different than a shoe company. In their ads, as you know, they don’t ever talk about the product, they don’t ever talk about their air soles, how they’re better than Reebok’s air soles. What’s Nike do in their advertising? They honor great athletes and they honor great athletics. That’s who they are. That is what they are about."
"The Industrial Revolution gave us the power to do things. The Computer Revolution is giving us the control over the use of this power."
"As a teacher, you can work in groups or as an entire class to create different versions of the same story. Project their creations for others to see. Share final creations with both parents and other students. Everyone will gain a sense of accomplishment once personal versions are completed. I highly recommend Storypanda for both parents and teachers of kids aged 2-10!"
"The truth of a thing is the feel of it, not the think of it."