The Talk Show

30: Buy High, Sell Low, with Marco Arment


00:00:00   This is a special evening edition of the talk show, I guess, this week.

00:00:06   Marco Arment.

00:00:07   Marco will come.

00:00:08   Are you doing the Zeldman again?

00:00:11   I'm trying to.

00:00:13   It was so nice.

00:00:14   I just felt so welcome when Zeldman did that.

00:00:17   It sounds like you're sick.

00:00:18   I know.

00:00:19   I can't do it.

00:00:20   I don't know.

00:00:22   So I've joined your club of people who don't own any Apple shares directly.

00:00:27   You did own it before?

00:00:29   today. I owned a good amount of them. Wait, so you sold today?

00:00:32   I did. What?

00:00:35   Sounds crazy, I know. Buy high, sell low.

00:00:39   Well, I've been really good at knowing when to buy. I really haven't mastered the art of when

00:00:45   to sell yet, but over the last couple of years, I've accumulated shares based on just putting a

00:00:51   little bit of money into my gambling fund every month or so and just knowing when to buy. So I've

00:00:57   So I picked them up really cheap.

00:00:59   So I came out actually pretty ahead,

00:01:02   'cause my average price was very low.

00:01:03   It was like 4.06 or something like that.

00:01:06   And I was waiting until earnings call day,

00:01:11   figuring that there would be a spike

00:01:12   after the holiday earnings call,

00:01:15   like there was last year, if I remember correctly,

00:01:17   that holiday earnings would be so good,

00:01:19   I figured there'd be a spike,

00:01:20   and then I'd probably sell it all,

00:01:23   'cause I kinda wanna get out of owning individual stocks.

00:01:25   I'm not that great at it.

00:01:28   Like, I haven't lost any money with it overall,

00:01:31   but I haven't made enough to make it worth the hassle.

00:01:34   And I found that owning it was making it hard for me

00:01:39   to objectively see what's going on.

00:01:42   Because it adds a lot of skin in the game for me.

00:01:45   And I don't know if it's colored my opinion,

00:01:48   but I think it might have.

00:01:50   And so I just wanted to get out of that.

00:01:51   For a lot of the same reasons you said,

00:01:53   you don't own individual shares also.

00:01:54   And you have a bigger problem, of course,

00:01:56   of possibly being able to affect it.

00:01:58   I don't have that problem, but I might someday.

00:02:00   - That's the main thing for me.

00:02:04   But it's actually a good point that you make, though,

00:02:06   about it coloring your objectivity.

00:02:08   You know, or I hate that word, but you know,

00:02:10   that when you personally have skin in the game,

00:02:13   when it's your money,

00:02:14   there's more of an emotional attachment.

00:02:17   And you know, I can't honestly say

00:02:18   I don't have any emotional attachment

00:02:20   Apple's success in general, period, but not owning the stock individually certainly makes

00:02:28   that easier.

00:02:31   So I sold today at like $462, which is good because it actually went down.

00:02:37   Now it's at $448 already.

00:02:41   The reason I sold was because last night, of course, it took a huge dip after the earnings

00:02:44   were released and some Wall Street people were disappointed.

00:02:48   And I realized that this is probably

00:02:52   going to be, for Apple investor purposes, the best news

00:02:57   day for the next six months in all likelihood.

00:03:01   And the fact that it took that big of a dive

00:03:04   on what's probably going to be the best news day for a while,

00:03:09   that scared me.

00:03:10   And so I figured, you know what?

00:03:12   Let me get out now.

00:03:13   If I really want to get back in at a later date,

00:03:16   I'll get back in on the upswing.

00:03:18   I didn't want to-- I was tired of writing it down.

00:03:21   And because I always feel like buying individual stocks

00:03:26   as a casual investor is kind of a sucker's game.

00:03:28   The whole system-- there's all these big investors that

00:03:31   are so much bigger than us, and all these complexities

00:03:34   and derivatives and options and everything that

00:03:36   are just way above my head.

00:03:38   And I just felt kind of like a sucker playing this game.

00:03:41   So I wanted to get out.

00:03:43   I figured this was a good time.

00:03:44   And I figure, because what's going

00:03:46   to happen over the next few months of the stock price?

00:03:48   I don't see a lot of reasons for it to go up

00:03:50   if it went down for this.

00:03:52   So I don't know.

00:03:53   That being said, of course, disclaimer.

00:03:55   This is not financial advice, because I

00:03:56   don't know what I'm talking about.

00:03:57   But now that I got out of it, I kind of already

00:04:02   feel free from that burden of having to think about that

00:04:06   and having to babysit that asset.

00:04:08   And one of the things about it is, for objectivity,

00:04:14   for me, I don't have to now worry about what everyone else

00:04:19   thinks about Apple.

00:04:21   Because when you own the stock, you

00:04:23   have to worry about the public as a whole voting

00:04:26   for that company with confidence,

00:04:28   or Wall Street voting with their confidence in this company.

00:04:31   And we've seen time and time again--

00:04:34   I mean, you make this your specialty-- time and time

00:04:37   again seeing these odd disconnects between actual Apple prospects and products and success

00:04:44   and what a lot of people in the press think about it. And I'm just so tired of having

00:04:50   to worry about that disconnect as something that will directly affect me. So that's the

00:04:57   biggest reason I wanted to get out was that I realized that I can be happy owning Apple

00:05:01   products developing in the Apple ecosystem, being involved with Apple, choosing these

00:05:07   things for myself without regard to what the market as a whole thinks because they're so

00:05:12   often so far from what I think.

00:05:15   Yeah, I totally feel the same way. I don't have any regrets over not owning Apple stock.

00:05:22   Especially for example, I even linked to a thing today pointing out that from 2007 to

00:05:30   2009 that the Apple stock took a huge dive and part of that obviously was that the whole economy was in a tailspin with the

00:05:36   You know financial institutions collapse, but if ever there was a time when like if the argument now

00:05:42   Is that the reason that Apple stock is is going down and has gone down so severely in last few months

00:05:48   Is that the growth is over?

00:05:50   Growth growth growth future growth future growth is all that matters is what the people who are saying no

00:05:55   No, no, no that the market is actually treating Apple right and I'm the fanboy who's you know?

00:06:00   Digging for an excuse to support my beloved Apple

00:06:04   well, then surely

00:06:07   2008 2009 was the time when the stock should have been roaring because all the growth was ahead of it

00:06:14   Right the iPhone was out. It was obviously going to grow

00:06:17   It was you know anybody who had two clues about what was going on in mobile, you know could see that this thing had an unbelievably

00:06:25   Unbelievably tremendous future and was probably not that far off from Steve Jobs boast that it was five years ahead of the competition

00:06:32   right 2000 circa 2007 Android was I think everybody would agree now was dogshit. Oh, yeah

00:06:39   Even the people who bought it like I like back then I would go to all of Tom where's investor things

00:06:43   and so of course all the investors always have the brand newest phone possible and

00:06:47   So I remember the first time I saw the t-mobile was at the g1 the first Android phone. Yeah

00:06:53   Was it brown or am I black? That's the Zune

00:06:56   It was it was you know, the black like, you know

00:06:59   So I had like a banding thing and yeah

00:07:01   It was weird and and even even this guy who just bought it and was so happy to show it off his oh, yeah

00:07:06   It's a piece of trash

00:07:07   Even he knew that I've it must have I think it was at South by Southwest and

00:07:12   So it might have been I think that that that g1 came out at the end of 2008

00:07:19   So it was probably March 2009.

00:07:21   So again, I think 2008, 2009 is when if growth was really what the market valued, future

00:07:29   growth, then that's when that stock should have been shooting up and wasn't.

00:07:33   Merlin Mann had one and swore by it.

00:07:36   I don't know how long he's in fact –

00:07:38   And she won?

00:07:39   Yeah, I swear to God.

00:07:40   And I remember this distinctly.

00:07:41   It's South by Southwest 2009 and it's daytime.

00:07:46   daytime. I mean, I was probably late afternoon, probably having a cocktail. But I still remember

00:07:50   it was daytime because it was at the Four Seasons in Austin, and the Four Seasons has a lot of

00:07:55   windows. And so times that I'm there, that I've been there in the daylight, I remember it being

00:08:01   daytime. And it was me and Merlin and Michael Lop. And I'd never seen the G1 before. Merlin

00:08:09   showed it to me and it was just so awful and Michael looked at it and Michael was so repulsed

00:08:16   like he didn't even want to touch it. I mean he was like really like grossed out like maybe he

00:08:21   acted honestly. He was trying to not be... You know how like if you're as an adult, not as a kid,

00:08:27   but as an adult, if you go somewhere and you're served some food that you're not going to eat,

00:08:31   you're just going to move it around your plate and not say anything and just be polite about it,

00:08:35   But you know that's what Michael was like he was like moving it around his plate like but there was no way

00:08:40   He was gonna actually try it and Merlin was giving us this explanation for what he found appealing about it

00:08:46   And you know I think it has something to do with Gmail that you know maybe the Gmail app did something that ah that's the connection

00:08:51   You know there was some kind of way that you can make an argument that it did something pretty good

00:08:56   You know maybe Gmail, and I guess probably did pretty good job with your Google Calendar right out of the box even back then

00:09:02   but

00:09:04   Michael was just I didn't know what to say Michael was just like ultimately he's just like wait just but stop stop just look at it

00:09:11   I mean and and even Merlin who was high on the thing at the time

00:09:16   He was like and he might have been high on something else. I don't know but

00:09:19   He was like yeah, you do have a point there

00:09:22   Anyway, that's when the stock should have been shooting up and it wasn't it's never really been that that related to reality

00:09:28   It's also not based on on any kind of

00:09:33   of present value of the company's products and prospects.

00:09:37   There's so much external force on it.

00:09:43   As you said, that whole period when the stock was tanking

00:09:47   because the whole market was tanking,

00:09:49   there's all those external factors.

00:09:50   So even when the company was doing fantastically

00:09:53   with new products and showing tons of signs of growth,

00:09:55   the whole market was so bad

00:09:56   that the stock price sunk anyway.

00:09:58   And now we're seeing other problems of,

00:10:02   well, they might be reaching saturation in some places. They might be, they can't possibly

00:10:09   keep growing. They were growing a year ago because it would be more money than the world

00:10:12   has to invest in them. There's all sorts of external factors now that they're running

00:10:17   into that are being problematic for the stock price, even though the company seems like

00:10:22   they're in really great shape.

00:10:24   Dave: Right. I just want to say here, I just want to throw this out. Anybody who's listening

00:10:27   to this show extemporaneously in the next day or two after it comes out is going to

00:10:32   know the context of what we're talking about.

00:10:34   But the shows are always up there forever, and people listen to them.

00:10:38   Just for historical context, we're recording this on the evening of the 24th of January,

00:10:45   2013.

00:10:46   And yesterday, Apple reported their results for the holiday quarter.

00:10:52   Their stock opened today at like $510 a share, and it closed at $450.

00:10:58   So the single biggest company in the world by market cap lost over 12% of its value in

00:11:07   a single day on an earnings report that completed a record-breaking, not for the company, but

00:11:16   for any company in history, the single most profitable year in history with still growing

00:11:22   revenue.

00:11:23   And really, I guess, ultimately, when it comes down to it and you go through all the numbers,

00:11:27   The one thing that has dropped is their profit margins, which have dropped from astronomically

00:11:34   high 45 to 50 percent a year ago to still remarkably high, like 36 or 37, 38 percent

00:11:46   for a hardware company, which is higher than software companies' margins, like Microsoft's

00:11:52   and Google's.

00:11:53   Because those margins are shrinking, their earnings, profits, whatever you want to call

00:11:59   it, net income is shrinking year over year for the first time since 2003, even though

00:12:05   we're talking about numbers like $9, $10 billion per quarter in earnings and profit.

00:12:12   So it is not.

00:12:13   It's not like, "Hey, it was entirely good news.

00:12:16   The growth is still there."

00:12:19   But the market reaction to it is absolutely ridiculous, I think.

00:12:23   I would love to know.

00:12:24   And this is the sort of thing I Googled for it

00:12:26   and couldn't find anything.

00:12:27   And I guess I'd have to--

00:12:29   I'm sure there's a way to figure it out.

00:12:31   But I'm trying to figure out if the biggest

00:12:33   company in the world--

00:12:35   whatever the biggest company in the world is.

00:12:36   It was Exxon before 2005.

00:12:39   It was General Electric.

00:12:40   The title passes every couple of years.

00:12:45   Has there ever been a company at the top of the currently

00:12:49   biggest market cap who's so volatile?

00:12:52   the stock price as Apple is?

00:12:54   Like 12-- - That's a good question.

00:12:56   - Right, like, talking about the stocks that we own.

00:12:59   I own like $97, I swear, it's like 97,

00:13:04   or it's more than, a little bit more than that now,

00:13:05   but of Sirius or XM, I don't know which one is it.

00:13:10   - Did you buy it when it was like three cents?

00:13:12   - Yeah, it was like, there was a time when they were like,

00:13:15   a couple years ago, they were like

00:13:16   on the cusp of going bankrupt,

00:13:18   and my friend Paul Kofasis and I were on,

00:13:21   he pointed it out to me on AIM.

00:13:22   It was like, hey, you know, like--

00:13:24   I forget which one is the company now.

00:13:26   Well, they merged into Sirius, so it's Sirius XM now.

00:13:28   I didn't know-- so it's called Sirius XM.

00:13:31   Yes.

00:13:31   They kept both names.

00:13:33   And they were seriously trading at like $0.03 a share

00:13:36   or something like that.

00:13:37   And I have it.

00:13:40   I have-- and it's one of those like,

00:13:42   this is how I make investments.

00:13:43   I have XM in the car, and it's all

00:13:47   we ever listen to in the car.

00:13:49   And I'm happy to pay whatever it is they charge me a month.

00:13:52   It seems like I'm getting a good value for something that I enjoy and it works very well.

00:13:56   So I thought, "Well, that doesn't make any sense that they would be going bankrupt.

00:14:00   This seems like a good deal.

00:14:01   It seems like every car I see nowadays has the goofy little antenna on the roof for it.

00:14:06   They've just bought out their competitor.

00:14:08   They don't have any competition.

00:14:09   I'm going to buy them because I don't see how this is going to go anywhere but up."

00:14:12   But I'm not an investor.

00:14:14   I don't keep a lot of money there.

00:14:15   My E-Trade account, I swear to God, had like $27 or something like that in it.

00:14:19   So I just bought as many shares as I could.

00:14:22   I don't know what it was.

00:14:23   Maybe it was like 11 cents a share.

00:14:25   So I bought a decent number of shares.

00:14:27   You probably paid 10 bucks to buy them.

00:14:29   Yeah, yeah, I did.

00:14:30   I think like the $9.99 transaction fee took up a lot of it.

00:14:35   And lo and behold, I forget what it's trading at now.

00:14:37   Let me see.

00:14:38   It's at $3.09.

00:14:39   So I've made money on it, but I only started with like, I don't know, literally like $20.

00:14:45   I mean, it was the equivalent of like when you're in college and you know where the

00:14:51   Mac, the ATM machines were that let you take out $10 instead of $20 because you only have

00:14:56   $18 in your account.

00:14:57   Yeah, I lost like $9, like 33% of the trade on the transaction and got like $20 worth

00:15:04   of the stock and it's gone way up.

00:15:06   That's like the only individual stock I own.

00:15:08   And now you can sell it and maybe buy an iPad mini smart cover with the proceeds.

00:15:13   Yeah, something like that.

00:15:15   So a stock like that though, like a stock of a company that is selling at 11 cents a

00:15:25   share or something like that, well, you expect it maybe to have a day when it goes up or

00:15:28   down 15%, 20%, because it only takes 10 cents for it to go up 50%.

00:15:34   The biggest company in the world, it doesn't make any sense to me that they would either

00:15:39   go up or down 12% in one day based on a quarter where what they announced was really not that

00:15:47   far removed from what everybody was expecting.

00:15:49   Yeah. I mean, and that's one of the reasons why I wanted to get out of owning that stock

00:15:53   is because it is just so incredibly volatile. And I was just tired of the stress of – and

00:16:01   kind of the frustration every day of like, "What is the market thinking with this?

00:16:06   shouldn't be doing this, so you know, things like that. And it's just, I don't need that

00:16:10   in my life anymore. And I realized too, like the money I made on that over the last couple

00:16:15   of years since I started buying those shares, I made some money on it, but I would have

00:16:22   been probably better served just ignoring that completely and redirecting that effort

00:16:27   and time and stress capacity into another business or another podcast or a few more

00:16:33   blog posts or something else. Doing anything else would have been a better choice for me

00:16:39   than worrying about Apple stock every week.

00:16:42   This comes up for me a lot because I don't blame people. I really don't because I expect

00:16:47   that the vast majority of people who either listen to my show, they're more regulars.

00:16:51   But I certainly understand that people who read my website, an awful lot of them are

00:16:55   not regular readers. They just come there when somebody else links to something or they'll

00:16:59   think to check in once in a while.

00:17:01   Yeah, they hit and run.

00:17:03   And so, you know, I think a lot of people probably, if they had to guess, would think

00:17:07   that I do own Apple.

00:17:09   And so, like on weeks like this where I spend a lot of time and effort writing about the

00:17:13   stock, I'll get a handful of emails asking, usually almost always very politely just curious,

00:17:18   not accusation, not, you know, any kind of confrontation, but just curious like, "Hey,

00:17:22   do you own Apple stock?"

00:17:24   And then, you know, I don't think I have a text expander snippet, but if I do, I've

00:17:28   forgotten about it.

00:17:29   But, you know, I have a short answer that's no, I feel like I shouldn't because it's

00:17:31   It's a conflict of interest.

00:17:33   And sometimes I'll write back and I'll say, "Wow, that's good to know.

00:17:36   But boy, that must be frustrating for you because I'm sure you would have wanted to

00:17:39   buy it back when it was $72 and a share in 2008.

00:17:45   And man, look at that now."

00:17:48   And I honestly don't have that thought at all.

00:17:50   I am the type of person who if I were playing a casino game and I was betting black on roulette,

00:17:57   I don't bet roulette, but if I was betting black and I got up and left and noticed that

00:18:00   black with just one four in a row, I would think, "Damn it, I should have stayed there."

00:18:04   I don't have any kind of feeling like that with Apple because I feel like I've done very

00:18:09   well with Apple's success my own way, that my website has become so popular, people are

00:18:16   interested in it. I have no complaints about the success I've enjoyed in some sense on

00:18:23   Apple's back over the last 10 years. I don't need it also to be in the stock market.

00:18:28   Right. And if that was a risk to your credibility, then it would really not be worth it.

00:18:32   Exactly. No, that's a perfect point where it's actually, in some sense, it would be

00:18:37   worse, where I feel like being able to say, you know, being in the successful situation

00:18:44   I am with my website right now and being able to say, "I don't own the stock. I have

00:18:47   no relationship with them. They don't give me money. They don't pay for my trips to

00:18:52   come to their events or anything is worth more to me overall. I mean, I can't put

00:18:58   a price tag on that, but it's worth more to me inside my head than it would be if I

00:19:03   had put, I don't know, whatever number of thousand dollars I could have theoretically

00:19:07   put into the stock when I thought it was incredibly low.

00:19:11   I wonder what effect having a bad six months of the stock, what effect that it has on the

00:19:17   company. And I think financially, Apple's doing very well for themselves. They have

00:19:21   massive pile of cash. That all seems well and good, and they don't seem affected by

00:19:26   that. I think Tim Cook is putting on a good face for it, too. And I don't think he has

00:19:32   job security to worry about for a long time. But might it be a problem for retaining talent?

00:19:42   I wonder. That's the sort of thing where it's—and I'm a little in over my head, but I wonder

00:19:46   like how much Apple like are options still a thing for retaining talent at Apple?

00:19:54   I mean and like you know they can always reprice them like they did with jobs and that whole

00:19:57   problem. I assume, again I'm also way in my head with the legalities of what they can

00:20:03   do here but you know they can like spend more money I assume to make the options worth more

00:20:09   to their existing employees but I have to imagine this must hurt morale for people who

00:20:14   who have a meaningful number of stock options

00:20:16   or a meaningful amount of their compensation tied to the stock

00:20:19   price in some other way.

00:20:21   And there probably aren't a whole lot

00:20:23   of people who have that situation, but I don't know.

00:20:26   This could be a problem.

00:20:27   If they start losing mid-level or even upper-level VPs,

00:20:33   that could really be problematic.

00:20:35   And I feel like Apple already has-- they already

00:20:39   have a problem retaining talent.

00:20:40   Because from what I see-- granted,

00:20:44   this is based on no research except people I see and know and read about, but it seems

00:20:50   like Apple has created this awesome ecosystem, especially with iOS, somewhat with the Mac,

00:20:57   but mostly with iOS, this awesome software ecosystem, and they have lost a lot of good

00:21:03   people over the last few years who have gone out and done their own iOS startups. And that

00:21:10   is probably a pretty big talent retention problem alone.

00:21:14   And so I feel like if you add any factors to that,

00:21:17   if you add in things like options being worth a lot less

00:21:21   than they were before, that could be really bad for them.

00:21:26   Yeah, and I think it is a different--

00:21:28   I don't think Microsoft had this problem in Windows heyday.

00:21:32   Because obviously, the success of Windows

00:21:35   created an inordinate number of programming jobs,

00:21:39   developer jobs, but I don't think it created this sort of jobs where somebody could leave

00:21:46   Apple and either be guaranteed a lot of money or have the opportunity as like a founder

00:21:54   to make a lot of money.

00:21:56   It wasn't like a startup type thing.

00:21:59   The first real startup thing for developers was the web, not Windows.

00:22:03   Right, and the web, it was hard to make money on the web.

00:22:07   So it wasn't quite as much of a gold rush mentality of,

00:22:09   oh my god, I'm missing out on everything going on

00:22:12   on the web right now because I'm working for some big company.

00:22:15   Right, and it wasn't the sort of thing

00:22:17   that sprang completely from one company where there's this

00:22:24   well--

00:22:26   I mean, unsurprisingly, there's an enormous well

00:22:29   of iOS development talent in Apple,

00:22:32   like people who are really good iOS--

00:22:34   You would hope.

00:22:35   No, well, just thinking about the friends that--

00:22:38   Right.

00:22:39   A lot of them mutual friends, mine and yours, but friends we have who work there.

00:22:43   I mean, they're A-plus people.

00:22:48   And no surprise, I'm sure that they're probably

00:22:53   dealing with those recruiter pitches on a regular basis.

00:22:57   The other problem, too, with retaining these people

00:22:59   is if the growth is slowing down, then Apple

00:23:04   going to lose some of its reputation of being a place where the cutting edge is happening.

00:23:10   And that also, that dampening of that, even though I'm sure there are still a lot of

00:23:17   exciting things to do in Apple, even a slight dampening in that is going to also amplify

00:23:24   people's desire to leave and go to either something more exciting or their own startup.

00:23:29   Yeah, and I do think that that is part of the appeal that Apple has for top notch talent

00:23:35   is the sort of sense that this, that's the show. That's where the best people go. You

00:23:44   know, that you're not really pushing yourself if you haven't tried taking a job at Apple

00:23:49   yet.

00:23:50   Right.

00:23:51   And you know, that's an exaggeration. But that, spelling it out like that kind of sounds

00:23:56   little preposterous. But I think that that's a, I don't know what you want to call it,

00:24:00   an undercurrent in our industry that people get. In addition to them, to people from Apple leaving

00:24:12   Apple to go to startups, we do know a lot of mutual friends who've been independent and then

00:24:17   gone to Apple. And you understand the draw of it is not entirely financial. A lot of it is that

00:24:23   all of a sudden you've got an opportunity to maybe do the best work of your life. And

00:24:29   certainly the work that might reach the most people.

00:24:33   Or to just have more control over what you do. Like at Apple, you might be working on

00:24:39   some feature of some little used app that if you want to be a big product person and

00:24:47   have your own control over what you do, over like make an entire app yourself or with one

00:24:52   of the person. Some people on Apple can do that. Most can't, and even the ones that

00:24:57   do usually can't put their name on it.

00:24:58   Right. Well, nobody gets to put their name on it, really.

00:25:02   Right. I wonder, too…

00:25:03   Does anybody? Is there anybody at Apple who's…

00:25:04   …the people at the keynotes?

00:25:06   Yeah, but that's really only at the executive…

00:25:09   That's like a handful of, yeah, SVPs and stuff.

00:25:12   Yeah. And even then, I wonder, because, you know, like, there's a lot more executives

00:25:15   than those who get to go on stage.

00:25:17   Right.

00:25:18   But it's a very short list.

00:25:20   I wonder though, in the past, it was always easy to pick

00:25:25   which company was the place that, especially programmers

00:25:30   right out of college or people who were really good

00:25:34   and who would get noticed publicly and be poached

00:25:38   by somebody, what was the company everyone wanted

00:25:42   to work for?

00:25:42   So I think when I left college in 2004, sorry,

00:25:48   When I left college in 2004, that company was Google.

00:25:52   And it remained indisputably Google for a while,

00:25:58   maybe until around 2009, even maybe 2010.

00:26:02   And then Google started getting big and boring.

00:26:06   And then I think Apple was that company starting around iPhone

00:26:11   time, I think, or maybe even a little bit before.

00:26:14   Apple became that company for a lot of people.

00:26:16   It was never quite as prevalent in that role as Google was for so long, but it certainly was there to a large extent.

00:26:24   I wonder how much that is fading now, but it seems like Google is not going upwards in that direction.

00:26:32   Google is still going downwards of being an interesting place for cutting edge people to want to work.

00:26:37   So now though, I don't really see a startup.

00:26:41   Facebook might have briefly had a little bit of that, maybe two years ago, but I don't

00:26:46   really see what companies are placing that. I think maybe what's replacing that is just

00:26:50   doing your own startup for this era, maybe for this five-year period.

00:26:54   Yeah, I think so. I think Facebook's a good example where … I'm probably really unqualified

00:27:01   to speak about it because I've always found Facebook distasteful. I still have never signed

00:27:06   up for the thing.

00:27:09   But I don't know that anybody, let's say two years ago, three years ago, maybe when Facebook

00:27:15   had peak draw for talent, I think it was entirely about the anticipation of them having a big

00:27:21   IPO and that you could join even late in the game and make a lot of dough, not because,

00:27:27   boy, they're putting out the best software in the world.

00:27:30   Yeah, I think you're right.

00:27:32   Nobody really thinks about it as great software.

00:27:35   You know, even Microsoft, because in the '90s, it was definitely Microsoft.

00:27:40   You know, and Microsoft had a run on their stock throughout the '90s that was just tremendous.

00:27:47   I mean, it was like a phrase, Microsoft millionaires, you know, that there were teams.

00:27:52   Or I guess it was almost, you know, it was like a weird social thing where like you'd

00:27:59   be at Microsoft on a team of six people, and two of the people would be like multimillionaires

00:28:05   because they'd been there for three, four, five years,

00:28:07   and the other four people who maybe were only there two years

00:28:10   were nothing but their salary and options

00:28:12   that hadn't invested yet.

00:28:14   But you were surrounded by people who were like,

00:28:17   not just, OK, if you add up my net worth,

00:28:19   yes, it's a little bit over a million, I'm a millionaire.

00:28:21   But they were like millionaire millionaires,

00:28:23   and they just kept coming to work.

00:28:26   All because it was-- people had gotten these options,

00:28:29   and the stock had just gone up, up, up, up, up.

00:28:32   Do you ever read Microsurfs?

00:28:33   No, it's one of those things I always hear about and always think, "I should read that

00:28:37   sometime," and of course I probably never will.

00:28:39   It's one of those books where I'm surprised I'm not in the same situation, that it seems

00:28:43   like the type of book that would be on my wish I'd read it but haven't read it. But

00:28:46   I did read it, and it's very good. I mean…

00:28:49   You can spoil it if you want.

00:28:50   Well, you know what, I don't think I remember it quite well enough to spoil it, but it captured

00:28:57   that feeling, though, of, you know, you never knew who you were around who had like a net

00:29:03   worth of $15-20 million and was doing the exact same work as you, who was doing it for

00:29:07   nothing but a salary of, I don't know, $90,000 a year, which was a lot better in 1995 than

00:29:14   it sounds today.

00:29:16   Oh, yeah. And that's always kind of been problematic and a deeply rooted part of the

00:29:24   modern computer worker culture is a lot of times people will accept pretty mediocre salaries

00:29:32   on the promise of maybe striking it rich with options or something.

00:29:36   And in practice that happens to so few programmers

00:29:39   relative to how many jobs there are out there paying these terrible salaries,

00:29:42   promising the possibility of these things.

00:29:44   It's really kind of sad. It's a lot like

00:29:48   the celebrity or entertainment business or even professional sports

00:29:53   where people will tolerate pretty

00:29:55   rip-off conditions

00:29:58   for a while with the hope of making it big and most never will.

00:30:02   Right. Right. Like minor league baseball being a famous example.

00:30:07   Right? Like minor league baseball players, most of them, unless they've already,

00:30:10   they're so talented, like taken top in the draft and they've signed for a big bonus,

00:30:14   are making like hundreds of dollars a week, maybe even in a month, riding around on like

00:30:21   school buses, staying in college dorms, you know, all, you know, six months at a time and then going

00:30:26   to get in a day job for the other six months of the year.

00:30:30   I mean, grown men, 30-year-old grown men who still hope

00:30:33   to make it to the major leagues who are sleeping in college

00:30:36   dorms for six months.

00:30:37   That's got to be rough.

00:30:38   Oh, I think it's really rough.

00:30:41   Sort of what makes minor league baseball so poetic, though.

00:30:45   The whole Bull Durham thing.

00:30:50   Here, let me throw this at you.

00:30:51   Here's something from my notes.

00:30:52   And this is about the apples-- to get back to the apple stock.

00:30:57   And it's not just the stock.

00:30:59   It's to me-- and I talked about this with molts last week,

00:31:02   where there's different breeds of apple--

00:31:05   I don't know what you want to call them-- pessimists.

00:31:08   I don't want to say--

00:31:08   I don't want to use the word "hater,"

00:31:09   because I feel like "hater" is the opposite of "fanboy."

00:31:12   And it's not constructive.

00:31:14   But people who just--

00:31:15   I'm just going to say people who don't like apple,

00:31:17   and people, you know, or who...

00:31:24   They're looking for reasons to always not like Apple? Right. Because that's like the real

00:31:29   opposite of fanboy. The fanboy accusation is that

00:31:32   whoever's being accused of it will blindly

00:31:35   try to support

00:31:37   the thing that they've bought usually because

00:31:39   it's something that you can't

00:31:41   economically buy both sides of, so you've got to make a choice and then you want to defend your

00:31:45   choice. And so you want to support that, you know, emotionally and psychologically, some

00:31:50   kind of, is that, is that kind of dissonance? There's some kind of term for that, I don't

00:31:54   know.

00:31:55   Yeah, something like that.

00:31:56   And so I think a hater is the other end of it. It's like, it's somebody who, who, who

00:31:59   has decided never to support this thing or never to buy this company's products and wants

00:32:04   to continually justify that position to themselves.

00:32:07   Yeah, I, I, something like that. And I think I got sidetracked on this point last week

00:32:11   before I made it quite right, which is that there's entirely different breeds of people

00:32:16   who-- let's say people who Apple drives crazy.

00:32:18   I mean, and let's just say, let's take it at two extremes.

00:32:23   One would be, let's say, like the open source zealot with long hair and a beard and, you

00:32:32   know, a developer who loves Android because it's open, really sees it and thinks it's

00:32:38   It's just great that you can download it and really doesn't see it as a joke that you

00:32:42   download.

00:32:43   Well, but there's enough of it that's open and really, really hates the whole app store

00:32:48   thing and the fact that you have to jailbreak the thing to sideload apps on it and you still

00:32:54   can't jailbreak the iPhone 5 and blah, blah, blah.

00:32:57   That guy, and compare and contrast with the guy who works on Wall Street and is 57 years

00:33:04   old and wears a suit every day and really is more about Apple the stock, Apple the company.

00:33:14   Those are two people who are never going to meet, have very different reasons for not

00:33:19   liking the company or being pessimistic about it or predicting its demise or whatever, both

00:33:24   driven nuts by the company.

00:33:28   I feel like a lot of them, it's all come together in recent months, though, where the media

00:33:35   coverage I've seen of Apple in the last two months has consistently presented Apple's

00:33:41   smartphone sales in a way that I think makes it look as though Samsung is already outselling

00:33:49   them.

00:33:51   And it's not true at the high end, you know, with the Galaxy Note and the Galaxy Tab, right?

00:33:56   They say increased competition from the Galaxy Tab and that Apple's share of the smartphones

00:34:00   has dropped from 23% to 19% and Samsung's has gone up to 31%.

00:34:05   And then any I think my dad, I always think of my dad, my dad read that article, what

00:34:09   would he think he would say, well, this this Samsung Galaxy Tab is outselling the iPhone

00:34:14   by a good margin.

00:34:15   And that's not true.

00:34:17   Apple sold more iPhone fives in like the first three or two months then Apple and then Samsung

00:34:23   sold Galaxy Tab 3s in—I forget how much longer it's been on the market. It's not even close.

00:34:29   So here's what I think is going on to some extent. I think that there's a lot of writers,

00:34:36   analysts, bloggers, zealots, and in some sense, investors too who have been waiting and waiting

00:34:43   for years for Apple to fall for whatever reason, whatever their hobby horse reason of what's wrong

00:34:48   with Apple and why Apple's doing it wrong and why they're lucky. They've been waiting for Apple to

00:34:52   fall. And they've grown so impatient because it hasn't happened that they've just gone

00:34:56   ahead and claimed that it's happened.

00:34:58   Right. Or they amplify any sign that it might be happening at some point in the future.

00:35:05   I think there's an awful lot of them who are claiming that it's happening now. I see it

00:35:11   on Twitter with the reaction to my incredulousness that Apple's results yesterday would result

00:35:19   in a massive, massive dumping of the stock.

00:35:24   Again, I think the stock's actually gone lower

00:35:27   since the point where somebody tweeted it,

00:35:29   but somebody worked it out that the amount of money

00:35:31   that Apple's market cap dropped after hours,

00:35:35   just in like two hours in after-hour trading

00:35:37   after the results, was equal to two Nokias plus two RIMs.

00:35:42   - Yep, and yeah, I think it has gone down further since then.

00:35:45   - And it's gone down further since then.

00:35:47   Apple has lost the entirety of two rims and two nokias.

00:35:52   I think a lot of this attitude, like I wrote this thing a couple months ago for the magazine

00:35:56   and I just published it this week called "Anti-Apple Anger," and, you know, my theory is that a

00:36:01   lot of people really resent Apple. You know, like I choose not to buy Samsung phones, but

00:36:09   I don't really have any feelings towards Samsung. I just don't really think about them. I don't

00:36:13   really care about them. I'm pretty much indifferent. But a lot of people who choose not to buy

00:36:18   Apple stuff really get worked up about it. And I think one of the reasons why is because

00:36:25   Apple products say no a lot in the design choices they make and in the features they

00:36:31   omit and the implementations of the features they have. They say no a lot. And they say

00:36:37   no in an opinionated way. And kind of like, at least in people's minds, like a Steve

00:36:42   Steve Jobs arrogance way of like, okay, the iPhone doesn't have a keyboard, because

00:36:47   nobody should ever need a keyboard, that's the wrong way to do it, and if you need a

00:36:49   keyboard, tough luck, you're wrong. It's that kind of attitude. And so that really

00:36:55   turns a lot of people off. And the kind of like, well, here's what we offer, we made

00:37:02   the thing that we think is best, if your needs are different, you're somehow wrong or inferior,

00:37:06   and if you don't like it, there's the door. So it does make a lot of enemies. So that's

00:37:11   That's why I feel like the people who choose not to buy Apple, a lot of times they've chosen

00:37:15   not to buy Apple because they either want something Apple doesn't offer or they do legitimately

00:37:21   need something that Apple stuff can't address for them.

00:37:27   And that attitude has made them actually angry that Apple doesn't want their money or won't

00:37:31   take their business or won't make something that satisfies them.

00:37:34   So it generates this level of anger that seems stronger than what a lot of companies get

00:37:41   for just not serving a market.

00:37:44   And I think it does have to do with that attitude

00:37:46   that I think Steve Jobs showed publicly,

00:37:49   and that Apple has kind of now-- it's kind of become

00:37:52   their reputation of having this attitude,

00:37:54   even if people there now don't actually express it this way.

00:37:58   But this attitude of, well, this is all you should ever need.

00:38:03   And if your needs are different, then you're wrong.

00:38:07   Well, I like your there's the door,

00:38:08   because that's the other thing, is

00:38:10   that they don't, rather than just take the door and go buy the other company's product

00:38:15   and say, "Okay, I bought this one," they don't take the door, they stay and complain.

00:38:21   Yeah.

00:38:22   Well, and a lot of times, if you really believe, like if Apple's saying, "No one ever needs

00:38:28   a keyboard," and you're like, "But I like keyboards," then there's this motivation.

00:38:35   People say, "Wait, no, something's wrong here.

00:38:38   people are all sheep, you're brainwashed, you're faithful, whatever, you know, all

00:38:41   these terms that mean you're being irrationally devoted. You know, they want to discredit

00:38:45   you because like, no, that's factually wrong in my head. So obviously something's

00:38:49   wrong with all of you people for buying this and for saying it's so great.

00:38:52   I like this guy I linked to this week. He said, here's the things Apple needs to do.

00:38:58   And one of them is make an – or at least announce during the earnings call. They should

00:39:02   announce that they're going to make an iPhone with a hardware keyboard.

00:39:05   And he writes, "Your correspondent does not have an iPhone. I probably wouldn't own

00:39:12   one anyway, but I am precluded from even considering one because they do not come with a real physical

00:39:17   keyboard. And I absolutely must have one."

00:39:21   So I love this guy. I love him because he's still hung up on this 2007 complaint that

00:39:27   Apple needs to, not should, but needs to, make an iPhone with a hardware keyboard. And

00:39:33   And then I just love it.

00:39:35   I love the bonus points.

00:39:36   - To get his business.

00:39:37   - Well, but that he probably wouldn't own one anyway.

00:39:40   That they must do it because he can't buy one without one,

00:39:43   but he still wouldn't buy one.

00:39:45   That's my favorite. - Yeah, that is pretty good.

00:39:47   - That to me is really, really good.

00:39:50   I also saw, and along similar lines, I saw some,

00:39:53   'cause one good way to get a lot of clicks,

00:39:55   and it's one of those things,

00:39:56   and you wrote about this recently,

00:39:58   but don't link to jerks.

00:40:00   It's a fine line between--

00:40:02   I did give you an exception, though. You're so loud, too. I just don't want to.

00:40:05   Yeah, but it's a fine line for everybody. And it is – it's a weird thing for me

00:40:09   because my site has gotten so popular, and I don't really – I tend – I think for

00:40:14   the – I think it's good that I still see it the same way I used to. And I think if

00:40:19   there's any sort of consistency as it's gotten more successful, it's because to

00:40:24   me, in my mind, it isn't that much – I don't see the people reading the site. I

00:40:29   I see the same screen that I saw before.

00:40:32   But I do know in the back of my head

00:40:34   that there's so many more people reading it.

00:40:35   So I am a little bit less likely.

00:40:37   And to me, one of those things that people write

00:40:40   just to get the clicks, just to get it,

00:40:42   is the I'm switching from iPhone to Android, and here's why.

00:40:47   You know, I loved my iPhone for years,

00:40:49   but now I'm switching to Android.

00:40:51   And there was one last week,

00:40:53   I think it was a guy at GigaOM,

00:40:54   and I almost linked to it.

00:40:57   I had it written up.

00:40:58   I very seldom write up a post or even a link and then stare at it, have it all ready to

00:41:05   go just like one click from publish and then scrap it.

00:41:08   Very, very seldom.

00:41:10   But I did it with this one because I just thought, "You know what?

00:41:12   This guy was just angling for this."

00:41:15   Because it wasn't even, "Here's why I did switch."

00:41:18   It's, "Here's why I'm going to switch," which is like…

00:41:20   That's even worse.

00:41:21   Right.

00:41:22   Because I really got the feeling like he wasn't going to do it anyway.

00:41:24   But anyway, the thing that I found was that he had – and it was only separated by one

00:41:28   paragraph.

00:41:29   It was like seventh paragraph in was that all he – a lot of his action now on his

00:41:40   iPhone is in these apps from Google.

00:41:42   And he uses, you know, the Gmail app for his email and the Google Maps for Maps instead

00:41:50   of Apple Maps.

00:41:52   And I had like two or three other examples.

00:41:54   I don't know.

00:41:55   A lot of people have been writing about that trend

00:41:57   lately, too, that people replacing Apple's built-in apps

00:42:00   with third-party apps.

00:42:01   And this is somehow bad for Apple.

00:42:03   Then in another paragraph, and in the next paragraph,

00:42:05   was that Apple is too closed and doesn't let you replace stuff.

00:42:11   Even though two paragraphs before, he

00:42:13   said the reason he's thinking about switching to Android

00:42:16   is that he's replaced all of his built-in apps.

00:42:20   Plus, don't a lot of people say that the Google

00:42:21   Google apps are actually better on iOS than they are on Android.

00:42:24   I've heard that a lot.

00:42:25   Oh, a lot of people do.

00:42:26   And that's something I want to write about soon on Daring Fireball.

00:42:30   I want to do it as if I got this in-draft follow-up to my thing last week about the

00:42:34   UI design trends.

00:42:38   And that to me, it's very notable that Google is often hailed as having these really nice

00:42:43   iOS apps and that are in this sort of

00:42:47   new, less textured

00:42:51   sort of plainer design style. I'm trying to avoid

00:42:55   a lot of rectangles. I'm trying to avoid at all. I'm really trying to avoid the word

00:42:59   skeuomorphic and flat. Because I think both, not

00:43:03   because I think they're overused, but because I think that they're both

00:43:07   the wrong words. And I really kind of

00:43:11   I wish I hadn't used that one word in the title of last week's piece, but

00:43:16   That'll be for my follow-up. But anyway, it is absolutely the case though without any

00:43:21   Argument that Google's iOS apps don't look like Android apps at all. And I think that's really interesting

00:43:28   because go back a previous generation and

00:43:32   Like by the 90s the knock against all of Microsoft's Mac apps was that they all look like the windows apps like, you know

00:43:41   all the Office apps look like Windows Office.

00:43:44   - Oh yes, and as a Windows user from the time

00:43:46   I hated QuickTime because it looked

00:43:48   like it didn't belong on Windows.

00:43:51   - Well, I can absolutely see the argument.

00:43:53   I mean, I think that's why-- - And iTunes now too.

00:43:55   - I think it's still even in more recent years,

00:43:58   I think it's clearly why Safari for Windows

00:44:00   never got any traction whatsoever,

00:44:02   whereas Chrome for Windows,

00:44:04   using the same rendering engine, took off like a rocket.

00:44:09   - I feel like, well sorry, finish that part.

00:44:11   Well, I just think that that's-- to me, it's fascinating

00:44:13   that Google has-- is doing, I think, much better UI design

00:44:16   work in all senses of the word, aesthetically-- in terms

00:44:22   of being aesthetically pleasing and in terms of usability

00:44:25   on iOS than on Android.

00:44:28   Well, and I think part of that is that the environment is--

00:44:32   you try to rise to the level of your environment

00:44:34   that you're in.

00:44:35   And on iOS, if they release something really hideous,

00:44:39   probably wouldn't do very well on iOS.

00:44:41   Because the standards are generally pretty high for UI stuff.

00:44:44   Yeah, and my understanding is I don't know a lot of people who work at Google on iOS

00:44:48   stuff, but I know a few.

00:44:49   But my sense is, though, that that's what they do, though.

00:44:52   If you work on iOS stuff, you're an iOS engineer at Google.

00:44:55   It's not just that you're on Team X and the same people writing Android apps are writing

00:45:01   iOS apps and they're trying to square the circle by using some sort of cross-platform

00:45:08   so they can write once and do it all and make them both just

00:45:14   web views so they can just write once and ship both.

00:45:16   No, they've got real iOS developers

00:45:19   who know and love the platform.

00:45:22   Right.

00:45:23   I think they were even advertising recently.

00:45:25   Wasn't there a thing where they were advertising recently

00:45:28   that if you're a great iOS developer,

00:45:30   you come work at Google and change the world

00:45:32   or something like that?

00:45:32   Oh, I don't know.

00:45:33   I don't know something like that.

00:45:34   Let me do a sponsor break.

00:45:35   Yeah.

00:45:38   Let's take the first break here.

00:45:40   And I want to thank our first sponsor.

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00:45:46   Squarespace is doing great work.

00:45:48   They have a great new product.

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00:46:04   And they have 24-hour customer support.

00:46:06   Let me take a break in the middle of this sponsor read.

00:46:08   Tell you something happened to me, John Gruber, last night.

00:46:12   Ready to go to bed.

00:46:13   It was like midnight.

00:46:13   I wasn't really going to go to bed.

00:46:14   I was going to watch a movie or something.

00:46:15   But I was ready to walk away from the keyboard.

00:46:17   And I went to check my stats just one more time

00:46:20   before I went to bed.

00:46:21   And I wouldn't load.

00:46:22   I thought, uh-oh.

00:46:23   I went to go to daringfireball.net.

00:46:25   And it just spun.

00:46:27   Wasn't completely dead, but the little progress bar

00:46:29   went about two inches and just stopped.

00:46:32   Almost never happens to me.

00:46:33   My website is generally really, really solid.

00:46:37   Long story short, I logged in.

00:46:39   I restarted Apache, didn't solve it.

00:46:43   I noticed that there were way too many Apache processes

00:46:46   running.

00:46:46   I thought maybe I was getting somebody even way more

00:46:50   popular than me had fireballed my site.

00:46:52   Well, that would be why there's so many things.

00:46:55   I don't know.

00:46:56   Couldn't figure out why there were so many Apache processes.

00:46:59   Couldn't figure it out.

00:47:03   restarted Apache didn't help restarted the whole server

00:47:06   didn't help

00:47:07   can take a guess what was it

00:47:10   uh... you've run mint stats on your server right i do

00:47:15   my guess is that all those apache uh... instances

00:47:19   were

00:47:20   a whole bunch of mint processes waiting for the connection of the database in

00:47:23   the database itself was what was jammed up exactamundo my god mark o'arman that's

00:47:28   why they pay you the big bucks

00:47:29   I kind of have some background in this sort of thing.

00:47:31   I have a second server that runs MySQL.

00:47:35   And MySQL does two things for me.

00:47:38   My movable type installation, that's

00:47:41   where the data store is for it.

00:47:42   And Mint writes to it.

00:47:45   And so exactly what you're saying

00:47:47   is happening is every time somebody would load the page,

00:47:49   the actual web server during Fireball was up,

00:47:51   but every single Apache process would then

00:47:53   be waiting for the MySQL server to get back to it and say, OK,

00:47:57   took that hit for you from Mint and then as soon as I restarted the MySQL

00:48:02   server everything was hunky-dory back to normal. Here's the thing, how many normal

00:48:07   people can do what I just did? I have it I'm not a sysadmin but I do have a

00:48:11   degree in computer science I did work professionally as a web developer before.

00:48:16   How many people at midnight on Wednesday night can troubleshoot something

00:48:21   like that? I wish you were around you probably could have saved me 15 minutes

00:48:23   And I would have restarted it sooner.

00:48:27   Here's the thing.

00:48:27   You go to Squarespace instead.

00:48:29   You don't have to worry about that.

00:48:30   They've got 24-hour support.

00:48:31   Their analytics are built in, probably don't

00:48:36   block on the MySQL server.

00:48:39   And they handle the hosting for you.

00:48:41   And did I mention that they have 24-hour customer support?

00:48:44   Everything on their platform, it's drag and drop, right?

00:48:46   So you're not sitting there-- you

00:48:47   don't have to sit there and write code to make your website

00:48:49   design your blog.

00:48:50   They have a tremendous front end where you can design this stuff

00:48:55   and put little widgets, put the elements you want

00:48:58   on the page in the templates where

00:49:00   you want them by drag and drop.

00:49:02   You can drag pictures straight from your desktop.

00:49:04   Take a picture that's on your desktop,

00:49:06   drag it right into the web browser

00:49:08   and create custom layouts, put the picture in there just

00:49:10   by drag and drop.

00:49:11   You don't have to write image tags and source

00:49:13   and all that stuff.

00:49:14   I mean, you could if you wanted to.

00:49:15   You can customize this stuff if you do know how to write code,

00:49:18   but you don't have to.

00:49:20   All the templates are customizable, so you don't have to just pick between their pre-existing

00:49:26   templates.

00:49:27   You can customize it, tweak it a little bit, or make your own thing right from the start

00:49:30   if that's what you want to do.

00:49:33   It's really, really great stuff.

00:49:35   You can switch from one template to another at any time.

00:49:39   You don't have to pick right at the beginning, and then you're locked in because all your

00:49:42   content is hard formatted in the template.

00:49:46   One more thing they do that I still don't even do is that all their built-in templates

00:49:51   scale automatically to perfectly fit iPad, iPhone, your computer, your 27-inch iMac,

00:49:57   whatever it is.

00:49:58   What do you want to call it?

00:49:59   Responsive design?

00:50:00   They've got it.

00:50:01   I don't even have that yet.

00:50:02   I'm still behind the eight ball on that.

00:50:05   You can pull contacts, push content from your blogs to Twitter, Facebook, stuff like that.

00:50:10   You can pull content from your Twitter.

00:50:12   You can have your tweets show up automatically on your Squarespace site.

00:50:15   Great, great stuff, and it's really easy.

00:50:17   You can learn it just by looking at it.

00:50:20   Here's what you do.

00:50:21   Go to squarespace.com/thetalkshow.

00:50:25   Squarespace.com/thetalkshow, then they'll know you're coming here from the show.

00:50:29   Start a free trial.

00:50:30   Don't even need a credit card.

00:50:31   Just start the free trial.

00:50:32   If you decide to purchase, if you like it, then when you go, you just enter an offer

00:50:37   code below the pricing thing at checkout, and the offer code is thetalkshow1.

00:50:44   the talk show and then the digit one and you'll get a 10% discount. squarespace.com/the talk

00:50:52   show. When you're ready to sign up and pay, use the offer code "the talk show one."

00:50:57   My thanks to Squarespace.

00:50:58   Tim Cynova For whatever it's worth, so I, even though

00:51:02   I can log into a server and figure out problems like that, last week I launched a new podcast

00:51:08   and I wanted to build a website for it and the last thing I wanted to do was spend a

00:51:13   a whole lot of time and effort making a website for a podcast

00:51:17   that might only have a few episodes.

00:51:19   And that's like the last thing you want to worry about.

00:51:21   So I went to Squarespace.

00:51:22   And they did end up sponsoring it,

00:51:25   so it's a little bit of a disclosure there.

00:51:27   But I went to host it there before I got them to sponsor it.

00:51:32   And because I went there because I didn't-- even though I

00:51:35   can do all that stuff, I don't want to mess with it

00:51:38   when it isn't necessary.

00:51:40   And it was great.

00:51:41   I really have no complaints.

00:51:42   host the entire podcast there, including the audio files. Amazingly, they allow you to

00:51:47   do that. I'm very happy with it.

00:51:50   Dave: They've built out an incredible… I don't know. I used to think of Squarespace

00:51:56   as like a… Not that it was bad, but in the back of my head, I thought of it as a fill-in-the-blank

00:52:02   template thing, where you got templates and you could fill them in, and then you'd have

00:52:05   a template-backed website. It is so much more than that. It's a really great system that

00:52:11   they built.

00:52:12   Oh, yeah.

00:52:13   And I feel like the days of hosting your own WordPress, I think, are long over for almost

00:52:19   everybody.

00:52:20   If you have a lot of customization or special needs, maybe you might want to look into that

00:52:25   sort of stuff.

00:52:26   But the days of hosting your own blog, especially maintaining its software, I think are long

00:52:33   over.

00:52:34   Yeah, I think so too.

00:52:35   You know what I had to do last week?

00:52:36   And again, it is just sort of coincidental that it all happened last week.

00:52:40   I had to actually patch movable type because of an exploit.

00:52:45   I'm kind of surprised you still can patch your copy, given

00:52:48   how much you've modified it.

00:52:49   You know what, though?

00:52:52   It's abstracted enough where my hacks are plugins,

00:52:57   and they have a pretty decent plugin API that

00:53:02   isolates the plugin code.

00:53:03   And most of my really weird hacks

00:53:07   are outside movable type.

00:53:09   It is taking-- because movable type is a static site generator,

00:53:12   at least the way I use it-- it's taking those static files

00:53:15   and doing weird things with them outside movable type.

00:53:20   And that stuff is irrelevant.

00:53:22   As long as movable type still spits out valid RSS or Adam

00:53:26   feeds, all my hacks on top of that still work.

00:53:30   Are there still any people who fight

00:53:32   for one format over the other?

00:53:33   If they're like, no, Adam is superior to RSS.

00:53:36   No, RSS is simpler.

00:53:37   No, I don't think so.

00:53:38   So I think that that whole thing, I think we're all pretending that that didn't happen,

00:53:42   because it was so simple.

00:53:43   Like XHTML?

00:53:44   Yeah, I think so.

00:53:45   Although I'm not sure, I would be interesting to hear from someone with an aggregator which

00:53:50   is more popular, RSS2 or Atom.

00:53:54   Well, Google Reader kind of threw the balance pretty hard towards Atom, because Google Reader,

00:54:00   any feed that they suck in, they convert to Atom for all the output.

00:54:04   Hmm.

00:54:05   I think.

00:54:06   That at least was the case.

00:54:07   I don't know if it still, I think it still is.

00:54:08   I did not know that.

00:54:09   Although, does anybody care, though?

00:54:11   If they handle it for you-- and that's the sort of thing Google is so good at, that if

00:54:17   you are emitting RSS2, but everybody who's reading your site through Google Reader is

00:54:21   seeing Google's Atom translation of it, I'll bet it's very high fidelity.

00:54:26   I guess it doesn't really matter.

00:54:29   No, I guess not.

00:54:30   I use Atom, I think.

00:54:33   I'm not even 100% sure.

00:54:35   I actually even forget why I made that choice.

00:54:38   I mean, I have to actually…

00:54:39   I'm sure it made sense, like, in 2003 when we were all arguing about this.

00:54:44   There was something about the actual syntax of it that I liked better.

00:54:49   Yeah, I'm using pattern.

00:54:50   Well, it has some things… it has some, like, more precise definitions for certain elements,

00:54:55   like, you know, "publisher" and "author" and "updated," stuff like that.

00:54:58   Like RSS is a little bit more liberal, I think, but…

00:55:02   But, boy, they're really close.

00:55:04   It was.

00:55:05   Yeah, please don't email me about this.

00:55:07   I'm sure there's gonna be like three people who were still fighting this fight

00:55:10   No, you're wrong about everything. I am I'm I'm I'm embarrassed

00:55:16   I loathe how much time I spent to following that whole saga and how invested I got in it

00:55:22   It really was such a waste of the time, but I it was you know, what is it?

00:55:27   there's something something of small differences like I

00:55:30   Don't know in hindsight

00:55:32   I cannot think of two formats that are so much the very same thing and so similar in

00:55:38   the way they do it.

00:55:39   Because it wasn't even like a major...

00:55:41   Like here's something that would have been a huge difference.

00:55:43   Like they're both XML.

00:55:44   Yeah.

00:55:45   If one was XML and the other one was JSON, well, there you've got a really interesting

00:55:51   fundamental difference between the two.

00:55:53   Right.

00:55:54   Like if one of them was like binary or if one of them was more like Pub/Sub, like push-oriented.

00:55:58   Right.

00:56:01   But they were both XML. I think if you cut off the top couple of lines, like at the right

00:56:08   below that, what's it called, the...

00:56:10   The preamble?

00:56:11   Well, the one with the question marks. What's that called?

00:56:13   That's the XML preamble.

00:56:14   Right. With, you know, cut off the next two lines or something like that, I think it would

00:56:18   be really hard to even tell in an eyeball which one was Adam and which one was RSS2.

00:56:22   It was really close.

00:56:24   Adam would have way more namespace prefixes and colons and other document type stuff.

00:56:31   This is the type of thing where-- and I always

00:56:33   forget to do the follow-up-- but this

00:56:35   is the sort of thing where talk show listeners are really,

00:56:37   really good.

00:56:37   Where collectively, there's somebody out there

00:56:39   who remembers all the nitty-gritty details

00:56:41   of the differences.

00:56:42   I think, in hindsight, as I look at Daring Fireballs--

00:56:46   I still call it an RSS feed, but it's in the Atom format.

00:56:50   I think the reason I liked Atom more than RSS2

00:56:53   was the date format.

00:56:56   Atom used, to me, was a very sane date format.

00:56:59   I forget which one it is, but it's one of the ISO ones.

00:57:02   And it goes year, month number, day number, and then Greenwich

00:57:07   Mean Time, all in a string.

00:57:09   And I think-- I could be wrong, but I

00:57:11   think RSS2 used a crazy sort of more plain text date format.

00:57:17   I don't think that's true, but I don't really remember.

00:57:19   I don't want to look it up now.

00:57:20   Yeah, I don't want to look it up.

00:57:21   It's boring.

00:57:22   But maybe somebody can shoot me an email

00:57:23   if I'm wrong about that, that I thought that the date format--

00:57:26   and maybe it was the permalinks.

00:57:27   Maybe there was something about the permalinks

00:57:29   I thought looked better in Adam. I don't know. Somehow I got caught up in Karen.

00:57:33   So you have a new podcast. Let's talk about it quick.

00:57:37   Yeah. It's called Neutral. It's neutral.fm. And it's me, Casey Liss, and John Siracusa

00:57:45   basically sitting around BSing about cars.

00:57:48   I just noticed, and you must have done this right before we got on the air,

00:57:53   because I see episode two is up.

00:57:55   Yeah, I put it up earlier this afternoon. Yeah, episode two is up and it's... We actually...

00:58:00   episodes one and two were recorded back to back. The first night we were recording I

00:58:04   said, "All right, let's just keep going," because we were on such a roll, but we didn't

00:58:07   want to release a two-hour long first episode. So there's no follow-up whatsoever, which

00:58:13   is going to drive people crazy who are still upset at the handful of things we got wrong

00:58:17   in episode one. But yeah, we just did episode three last night. I'll be posting that probably

00:58:22   mid next week. It's a lot of fun. It's not... One of the reasons why we called it "Neutral"

00:58:28   is kind of to be understated. Every other car podcast, it's all about car news and horsepower

00:58:35   and racing and all this stuff. They all have these masculine explosive names and horsepower,

00:58:43   speed, rocket. We just want to... Let's call ours "Neutral" and just have it be like this

00:58:51   simple black and white site, this simple logo that does not contain anything on fire or

00:58:55   moving, and just three guys chilling out talking about casual cars. We're talking about like

00:59:02   Honda Accords that we've owned in the past, not the newest crazy Bugatti Veyron that was

00:59:10   released or anything like that. And it's just fun. It's a fun casual show. If you know a

00:59:15   lot about cars and you come to it expecting high-end car

00:59:21   discussion, you're probably going to be infuriated at how

00:59:25   much we not only don't talk about that, but how much we get

00:59:28   wrong about some of the technical details of what we do

00:59:30   talk about.

00:59:31   But it's really for casual car fans, especially people who are

00:59:36   already fans of us in general, just wanted to hear us chill

00:59:40   out and talk for a while.

00:59:41   That's sort of the car equivalent of the sports thing

00:59:46   that Montero started that I was in last year,

00:59:48   the American McCarver, right,

00:59:50   which has sort of gone ice cold.

00:59:52   It's sort of fizzled out.

00:59:54   But the basic idea was to do a sports site

00:59:56   for non-sports fanatics, or just casual sports fans,

01:00:01   which is sort of underserved, right?

01:00:04   Like you go, most sports sites are for people

01:00:07   who like eat, sleep, and you know,

01:00:09   and maybe that's just the natural order of things

01:00:11   Most tech sites are for people who are, that's their main obsession.

01:00:15   Seems like that's the same sort of thing, where you're really interested in cars,

01:00:20   but it's not your main thing. Nobody's ever going to say Marco's main thing is cars.

01:00:24   Because, and that's how I am. I like cars a lot, but I don't listen to any car podcasts.

01:00:29   I don't subscribe to any car magazines. I like cars a lot, but I don't care quite that much

01:00:37   to follow every single detail of the news every week and really care about all these

01:00:42   high-end things I'll never even see.

01:00:46   >> Syracuse does a lot of podcasts.

01:00:48   >> He does.

01:00:49   Yeah.

01:00:50   Hey, I'm amazed at how much he does because he has a job and a family.

01:00:54   Like, you know, we have families, but we don't really have real jobs, so it's a little bit

01:00:58   easier for us to wedge this stuff in.

01:01:00   I don't know how he does it.

01:01:01   >> I don't either.

01:01:02   And the other thing that I find interesting about his podcast, what's the word?

01:01:07   Not proclivity.

01:01:09   Well, I don't know.

01:01:13   Output.

01:01:15   Is that prior to getting into podcasting on a regular basis, he wrote so sporadically.

01:01:20   He'd write in massive, delicious feasts, but never really gave you snacks on a regular

01:01:28   basis.

01:01:29   Like, where did this time come from?

01:01:30   I just assumed it was the fact that he didn't have time

01:01:33   'cause he had a full-time job

01:01:34   and that he's so meticulous and thinks things through

01:01:36   that it wasn't possible.

01:01:38   Whereas, you know, like, even when I did have a real job,

01:01:42   found it possible to write

01:01:44   Keep Daring Fireball going weekly

01:01:47   in between the time I had around a real job.

01:01:50   Whereas he seems to find, you know,

01:01:52   the time to do these podcasts.

01:01:54   That's something I find it exhausting.

01:01:56   I find it, not exhausting, but I find it,

01:02:00   I find doing one show a week to be like,

01:02:02   I cannot believe it's time for the show again,

01:02:04   because I feel like I just did last week's show yesterday.

01:02:07   Right.

01:02:07   Yeah, and doing any more than one show a week,

01:02:10   I don't think I can ever do that.

01:02:11   Right.

01:02:12   You know, I had my development show,

01:02:14   and I ended that in December.

01:02:16   And I wanted to do a car show.

01:02:17   And we've been saying this might be a limited run.

01:02:20   We might only do like eight episodes.

01:02:22   We don't really know yet.

01:02:23   We're going to see what happens when that time comes.

01:02:25   But I also thought, what if I want

01:02:28   to do some other topic in the future?

01:02:30   And I don't think I would ever run them in parallel.

01:02:32   The workload would just be insane.

01:02:36   But I mean, and one thing that helps with John Siracusa

01:02:39   is with his show, Hypercritical, that he also ended in December,

01:02:42   that, man, I love that show.

01:02:44   That was my favorite podcast.

01:02:46   When he ended Hypercritical, one of the things he said

01:02:49   was that he was just spending hours researching

01:02:53   for every show beforehand.

01:02:54   And when I was doing Build and Analyze,

01:02:57   I would research before each show for maybe 45 minutes.

01:03:00   And most of that was going through the feedback email

01:03:02   and deciding what to talk about.

01:03:03   I couldn't even imagine finding the time every week

01:03:06   to do hours of Syracuse-level research.

01:03:09   So knowing that he was prone to doing way more work than he

01:03:13   might necessarily need to for our car show,

01:03:17   Casey and I arranged all the topics.

01:03:19   And we don't tell John.

01:03:20   We don't tell him anything in advance of what we're doing.

01:03:23   We intentionally keep it from him

01:03:25   so that he can't overwork himself. He can't possibly go research anything. So if we say

01:03:30   something—especially if he says something that's technically incorrect, take it easy

01:03:35   on him, because we're intentionally keeping him in the dark until the very last minute.

01:03:39   Yeah, I had mixed feelings about the—you know, because it was—I do think it was late

01:03:44   in the run of Hypercritical where he kind of opened up about how much preparation he

01:03:48   did per episode. Not that he kept it secret before, but I don't recall him having talked

01:03:53   about it. And I also feel like maybe the longer they did the show and the better that Dan and John

01:04:05   got at doing it, the more research he did because that's what he knew made for a good episode of

01:04:11   Hypercritical, right? That it wasn't that it got easier and he had to do less work per show,

01:04:17   it was that he knew what made for a good episode and that involved a lot more, a lot of research.

01:04:22   But I had mixed feelings about because I felt bad on the one hand that he was doing a massive amount of work for it

01:04:27   But on the other hand I felt good because I thought well

01:04:29   Thank God that he's not just winging it and having the show come off so incredibly articulate and meticulous

01:04:35   right because every one of those shows was like one of his giant articles and

01:04:39   And it's really remarkable how polished he was able to make those shows with only a few hours of prep for each one

01:04:46   but I mean that was

01:04:49   the amount of work he put into that was insane, but the output was also amazing.

01:04:56   I agree with every word. One thing I've thought about with podcasts, and I don't know, maybe

01:05:01   there's so many podcasts, and that's great, it's a great thing, but you just can't keep

01:05:05   up with them, but maybe somebody's doing it. But I feel like maybe in terms of the work

01:05:10   and the relentlessness or the, I don't know what you want to call it, of doing it every

01:05:14   week, I feel like you do have to do it every week, or have some sort of schedule, because

01:05:18   Because without a schedule, it just doesn't work.

01:05:21   And weekly is a pretty natural schedule.

01:05:24   But I've often wondered, maybe one format to do for, let's say,

01:05:29   something like neutral, which isn't meant to be like any of your primary gigs,

01:05:34   where you guys just said, maybe it'll only be an eight-show run.

01:05:37   What about following the episodic TV model of having seasons,

01:05:42   where you do eight shows?

01:05:44   You'll plan it, though.

01:05:45   You're going to say January and February, we're

01:05:48   going to do eight shows, one a week for eight weeks,

01:05:52   and then we're going to take a break.

01:05:54   And then we're going to come back,

01:05:56   and we'll do another eight show run when we

01:05:58   feel like we're ready for it.

01:06:01   I feel like that might work in a way that we'll just

01:06:06   do a show whenever-- we're not going to do one every week.

01:06:09   Maybe we're only going to do 20 per year,

01:06:11   but we'll do them at random whenever we feel like randomly

01:06:14   can get together. I feel like that never works. It falls apart.

01:06:17   Right, because that becomes, "Oh, we'll do it sometime soon. We'll do it next week.

01:06:21   We'll do it next month." And then the show goes six months without an episode.

01:06:24   Right. And I also feel like it might help in the same way that it works for TV shows

01:06:29   to keep the audience engaged. Then you can do just a little bit of promotion up front

01:06:35   a week or two in advance to make sure everybody knows the show's coming back, and then people

01:06:39   can get into it and sort of be ready for the fact, if they're fans of it, that that'll

01:06:43   That'll be one of the shows they'll have queued up on their phone to listen to in the car

01:06:46   on the way to work for two months.

01:06:48   I think it might be better to just do every two weeks, just constantly, rather than take

01:06:55   these big breaks.

01:06:56   I feel like the big breaks would also have a very high chance of just extending themselves

01:07:02   and becoming years, and then you forget about it and then the show dissolves.

01:07:08   And I think as a podcast listener, I listen to podcasts all the time, in the car, washing

01:07:12   whatever, and I walk in the dog, listen to a lot of podcasts, but there are more podcasts

01:07:19   most of the time that come out every week than what I have time to listen to, and I

01:07:23   think that's probably true for a lot of people.

01:07:25   Oh, it's ridiculous for me.

01:07:28   And so I wouldn't mind if some of my favorite shows went to every two weeks instead, because

01:07:32   I'm not the kind of guy to want to skip an episode. If a show that I listen to, if it

01:07:37   comes out, I'm going to listen to it. And if I can't keep up with the show, I'll

01:07:42   just delete it. I won't listen to it. I won't subscribe to it at all, because I'd

01:07:46   rather not hear any of it than only listen to every other episode. And maybe that's

01:07:50   just because I'm weird and I'm a nerd, but that's how I work. So if there were

01:07:55   more shows that weren't weekly but were still regular, I'd be fine with that.

01:08:01   Are you a catch-up on Twitter person? You know what? Honestly, I used to be, and

01:08:06   It took up so much time on my data in the last few months.

01:08:09   Basically, ever since starting the magazine,

01:08:11   when my workload has increased substantially,

01:08:13   ever since starting the magazine,

01:08:16   I became a scroll to top for the main timeline person.

01:08:19   I still read all of my at replies,

01:08:21   but I can't read the main timeline anymore.

01:08:24   - Yeah, that's how I,

01:08:26   but I've been like that for a long time.

01:08:27   And I'm usually a completist,

01:08:29   although I don't actually read all my email.

01:08:31   It's like a, just like a debt in the back of my hand.

01:08:34   I theoretically would read it all,

01:08:36   but I never get around to it.

01:08:38   But I never do the mark as read.

01:08:39   I keep them marked unread.

01:08:41   Whereas Twitter, I've never minded the fact

01:08:44   that I don't see them all.

01:08:45   - Well, 'cause Twitter, your timeline isn't everything

01:08:48   that's directed at you specifically,

01:08:50   so you don't feel like you are offending these people

01:08:52   by not reading what they posted publicly to the world.

01:08:55   - But I feel like there's, I feel like,

01:08:59   and I feel like that's one of the great things

01:09:00   Twitter has done over the years,

01:09:02   resist that urge to give you like an unread count.

01:09:06   And that's intentional.

01:09:07   It is, and there was so much demand for it, especially like when Twitter was at its sort

01:09:14   of—at the point where it was still young and malleable, but was old enough and established

01:09:22   enough that it was clearly going to be a huge thing.

01:09:25   Like it had been around long enough that everybody knew this was going to be a big deal, but

01:09:30   but it was still young enough that they could have made changes like kind of switch to an

01:09:34   inbox model where you're expected to read everything in your timeline. Or even to have

01:09:39   the option. That was the thing that people would say, is just give us the option to do

01:09:43   it that way. And you can even, you know, I even agree that you should leave it off by

01:09:47   default for most people. But give me the option to have a read and unread count for tweets.

01:09:53   And that was back when we would like ask Twitter to change something and not be scared by what

01:09:57   they would actually change. Right. It's true. It is true. Back when changes were usually

01:10:02   a good thing. Right. But I actually agree with that, though, that mindset, though, because

01:10:06   I do feel that by giving the option to do it, you implicitly endorse it. You're saying

01:10:11   that it's a legitimate way to use it, and they're saying no. And it is sort of like

01:10:15   an Apple-type decision, like you said, where they're making the decision for you, this

01:10:18   is the best way to read Twitter, is just start with what's going on right now and scroll

01:10:24   down until you're bored. And don't worry about catching up if you're away for a day.

01:10:29   Right. Dive into the stream, wherever it happens to be, and that's it.

01:10:34   Right. I guess I do read all my @ replies, although I can't say if I'm on vacation

01:10:40   or on a conference or traveling or something that I necessarily do.

01:10:44   Yeah, sometimes it gets out of control. Yeah, but I don't find it that hard to do

01:10:48   that either. Well, it's easy, because with @ replies,

01:10:53   especially because you have a pretty asymmetric follow to follower account. So I think people

01:11:00   who reply to you on Twitter probably don't implicitly expect a response to every one

01:11:08   of those replies. Whereas with email, there's kind of this, for most people, there's this

01:11:12   implicit expectation that you're going to respond. If somebody takes the time to compose

01:11:16   an email to you, then you should probably respond if you don't want to be a dick. Of

01:11:21   And of course I just choose to be a dick to everybody and not respond because I can't.

01:11:25   And I've mentioned this before, but there is something too that's really, really...

01:11:29   It's almost like evolutionary, that it gets to what humans are good at with Twitter as

01:11:34   opposed to...

01:11:39   Even email is that you can do it all with your eyeballs because you don't have to open

01:11:44   a tweet to read it.

01:11:45   Even no matter what your email program is, and if you have one in like most of where

01:11:48   can just keep hitting the space bar, for example, to keep going next message, next message.

01:11:53   You still have to like move your eyes up to the top of the screen each time. And even

01:11:59   people who are being conscientious and thinking, "Well, this guy is busy," or even if you don't

01:12:03   even think somebody is busy, just the fact that it's harder to write a concise short

01:12:07   message than it is a rambling one and keep it short. Twitter's enforced brevity makes

01:12:11   it possible. I can just read, I don't know what I'm looking at right now on my screen,

01:12:15   like, I don't know, a dozen tweets at a time just by moving my eyes down. And it's so much

01:12:21   faster. It's like an order of magnitude faster than even the most efficient email, right?

01:12:26   Even if everybody's email to me was tweet length, it's so much more efficient.

01:12:31   Well, because tweets are constrained to that length, the clients can be designed in a way

01:12:35   that makes it easy to skim a whole bunch of them. Whereas email, it could be one line,

01:12:40   or it could be some giant newsletter with a rich layout and pictures embedded and everything.

01:12:44   you don't know what to expect with email.

01:12:46   So the clients have to have these big flexible windows

01:12:48   and everything, and it's just not the same at all.

01:12:52   Yeah, totally.

01:12:53   What else is going on this week?

01:12:58   Not much.

01:13:00   I don't know.

01:13:01   I've been busy working on various stuff,

01:13:04   and I've kind of been buried.

01:13:07   I've missed most of the news, except the Apple stock stuff,

01:13:09   which just annoyed me.

01:13:10   So now, I'm glad to be out of it now.

01:13:14   Here's one that I thought was pretty interesting.

01:13:19   And there's two points to it.

01:13:22   Is this email that's come out in a legal case between--

01:13:26   I forget who all is involved-- but the government's investigating

01:13:28   Apple and Google and a bunch of other companies in Silicon Valley for--

01:13:34   I don't know what you want to call it legally--

01:13:36   Like a no-hire thing?

01:13:37   Yeah.

01:13:38   And it's like that it's an illegal form of collusion.

01:13:40   That they've agreed-- they unofficially agreed.

01:13:43   Adobe's involved, you know that they agreed not to

01:13:45   poach the other company's employees and if a guy from a current employee of Apple came to let's say Google and

01:13:53   Applied for a job that guy was fair game because he applied but that the each company's recruiters agreed

01:14:00   Implicitly not to go after employees at the other companies which in itself is apparently illegal

01:14:07   And I you know, I think for obvious reasons, it's not

01:14:11   It might be good for these companies, but it's certainly not good for the individual

01:14:15   Engineers, you know that such a thing in California has really I think generally

01:14:20   Pretty good laws on the books for and you know, all these companies are in California

01:14:25   In California, there's no non-competes those exactly. I think it goes hand it so that was exactly the example

01:14:31   I was going for is that they don't have they don't enforce non-competes. They're very very liberal and towards the engineers rights workers, right?

01:14:40   But this the one that really caught my eye though is this one that had an email from did you see this an email?

01:14:46   to Ed Colligan Ed Colligan being the

01:14:49   Palm CEO the PC guys aren't there but not being worried about Apple entering the cell phone market a couple weeks before the iPhone was announced

01:14:58   Because PC guys they've spent a long time

01:15:00   Trying to make a good cell phone PC guys aren't gonna walk right in and

01:15:09   Here's the email that Steve Jobs sent to him.

01:15:11   Ed, this is not satisfactory to Apple.

01:15:16   It is not just a matter of our employees

01:15:19   deciding they want to join Palm.

01:15:22   They are being actively recruited

01:15:24   using knowledge supplied by John Rubenstein and Fred Anderson.

01:15:28   Now, aside, John Rubenstein was--

01:15:31   I forget what his title was at Next,

01:15:33   but he was one of the guys who came over from Next to Apple,

01:15:35   had worked with Steve Jobs for a long time,

01:15:37   and was the head of hardware engineering at Apple during the early iPod era,

01:15:43   and when they really turned around the Macs and made Macs, you know, aluminum and all sorts of

01:15:49   stuff. And he had been in retirement just living in like a mansion down in Mexico or something like

01:15:55   that, and Palm got him to come back to run that. And Fred Anderson was the former CFO at Apple,

01:16:01   who kind of got thrown under the bus with the that options thing that you referred to

01:16:07   the backdating scandal yeah uh he kind of took the fall for that options backdating thing which

01:16:13   keep that in mind i i'm going to bring that right back up in a minute um with john now back to jobs

01:16:19   email with john personally participating in the recruiting process we must do whatever we can to

01:16:26   stop this. I'm sure you realize the asymmetry in the financial resources of our respective

01:16:32   companies when you say we will both just end up paying a lot of lawyers a lot of money."

01:16:44   And then it goes on, and effectively Jobs threatens a patent suit if Palm doesn't agree

01:16:50   that Apple's going to go after Palm on patent grounds

01:16:55   if Palm doesn't agree to this sort of no-poach policy.

01:16:58   And then bad mouse a bunch of patents more or less says--

01:17:03   what's he say here?

01:17:03   I guess I should just read it.

01:17:05   "Just for the record, when Siemens sold their handset business to BenQ,

01:17:10   they didn't sell them their essential patents,

01:17:13   but rather just gave them a license.

01:17:15   The patents they did sell to BenQ are not that great.

01:17:18   We looked at them ourselves when they were for sale.

01:17:21   I guess you guys felt differently and bought them.

01:17:25   We are not concerned about them at all.

01:17:27   My advice is to take a look at our patent portfolio

01:17:30   before you make a final decision here, Steve.

01:17:34   That's fantastic.

01:17:36   And to me, it's just--

01:17:37   I loved it in the sense that it's such classic Steve Jobs.

01:17:42   It's your thing is shit.

01:17:45   Our stuff is awesome.

01:17:46   Just do what I want.

01:17:47   these patents you bought. You're dumb." That's always part of the jobs like Kung Fu or the

01:17:53   Jedi mind trick is to somehow convince you that you're dumb.

01:17:56   Tim Cynova Yep. And everything's black and white.

01:17:58   Eric Bischoff Right. We took a look at these. This is about

01:18:00   a—I guess the call again that said, "Look, we bought these patents from this Ben—I

01:18:04   never heard of BenQ, but who knows? They're a bunch of mobile patents. We bought them.

01:18:09   And the job's the same. We looked at them. We decided they're a shit. I guess you felt

01:18:14   differently."

01:18:15   And I think it's such classic jobs.

01:18:19   So I guess I was amused.

01:18:22   There's so much character in that email.

01:18:24   And it's just kind of--

01:18:25   Oh, yeah.

01:18:26   And not to mention, I love the lawyer bit, too.

01:18:29   Because the POM guy had said, oh, we're

01:18:31   just going to spend a whole bunch of money on lawyers.

01:18:32   Which is usually, if you're being threatened

01:18:35   by legal action, the person who's being threatened

01:18:37   and knows that they would lose or would cost them

01:18:40   a whole lot of money, usually that's what they say.

01:18:43   Oh, let's leave the lawyers out of this.

01:18:44   we'll figure this out ourselves. So yeah, that's not a position of power that he was

01:18:50   coming from there. Oh man, that was, that, yeah, that email was fantastic.

01:18:55   Right. So here's Dan Lyons' take on it today over at the ReadWrite.

01:19:02   No more web. They dropped that, huh?

01:19:04   Right. They dropped that when they brought Dan Lyons. He says, he quotes this and sets

01:19:10   the stage and he has a picture of the email. And then he says, "Apple fan blogger John

01:19:14   Gruber seems to think this letter is just the coolest thing ever a quote stone cold message that shows

01:19:20   Quote the man did not beat around the bush

01:19:23   I feel like that's such typical Dan Lyons where I never said it was the coolest thing ever and he didn't put quotes around it

01:19:30   I didn't say it was the coolest thing ever and I didn't you know, I don't go into deep

01:19:34   analysis of everything I linked to

01:19:37   He's saying here but wait a minute

01:19:41   Let's look at what happened here.

01:19:42   Jobs, one, Jobs proposed something to Palm

01:19:44   that was not only wrong, but also, quote,

01:19:46   "likely illegal," as Colligan put it.

01:19:49   Two, Colligan refused to do something illegal.

01:19:51   Three, as punishment, Jobs threatened to drag Palm

01:19:54   into years of bogus patent suits.

01:19:55   He was perfectly willing to use, parentheses,

01:19:58   abuse, question mark, the legal,

01:20:00   the court system to hurt a rival.

01:20:03   And then Dan Lyon says, "And we're supposed to see Jobs

01:20:05   "as some kind of hero?"

01:20:07   I didn't say you were supposed to see him

01:20:09   as a hero for that.

01:20:10   I didn't pass any real judgment on it.

01:20:12   And I would say that saying that the letter,

01:20:14   the email was stone cold is,

01:20:17   whether you think Jobs is a complete asshole for it

01:20:19   or that it's funny or that you think

01:20:21   he was completely in the right to do it,

01:20:23   I think everybody could agree

01:20:24   it was a pretty stone cold email, right?

01:20:26   I mean, that's ice cold.

01:20:29   I like, that's all I wrote.

01:20:30   I didn't say it was cool.

01:20:32   You know, and in fact, if you want me to analyze it

01:20:34   a little bit, I would actually say that in a sense,

01:20:37   probably that's probably the worst of Steve Jobs in that it is I don't know

01:20:44   what's the word impetuous you know it's it's reckless right it is that's a

01:20:50   reckless thing and here's the thing about it I was emailing somebody else

01:20:55   about it today and they were they somebody else had emailed me a friend

01:20:58   had email and so what patents do you think jobs was threatening palm with and

01:21:01   I said you know what he probably didn't have any patents in mind he was just

01:21:04   making the threat, and if it ever came to it, he'd go and say, "Find some patents and

01:21:08   do it."

01:21:09   But he didn't have any patents in mind, and he clearly didn't—here's the thing—he

01:21:13   clearly didn't go to Apple Legal and say, "Find me some patents to go after Palm because

01:21:18   I want to write this email," because if he did, even if they had the patents that

01:21:22   they could threaten him with, if he had gone to Apple Legal, surely Apple Legal would have

01:21:26   said, "You can't put that in writing because sending an email like that, making a threat

01:21:30   like that is illegal, and you certainly don't want to put it in writing."

01:21:33   Right? Like, I think it's fairly clear that Steve Jobs didn't run that email by anybody.

01:21:38   Oh, yeah.

01:21:39   He just wrote it.

01:21:40   I mean, that's why it's so amusing to people like us who follow him and his company and

01:21:46   this whole business is like, you know, you got to give the guy credit. He had balls.

01:21:51   And there are not that many people in our industry who will speak that frankly who are

01:21:55   in a position of power. I think his friend Larry Ellison is one. There really aren't

01:22:00   a whole lot more. And so I feel like, and maybe it's, I don't know if it's like an East Coast

01:22:07   thing, I feel like it's a cultural thing of some sort where either you love that attitude as a

01:22:14   spectator or it's off-putting. And we love it. Right. I certainly wouldn't have, even if he had

01:22:22   sent me an email and said, "John, I've read your site for a long time. Never asked your opinion

01:22:27   before, but here's the thing. I want to send this email to Ed Colligan. Do you think I

01:22:31   should? I would have had to say, "It's pretty funny, but I don't think you should send that

01:22:35   because I don't think you should be making legal threats like this in an email." I don't

01:22:43   think anybody would have said that. And I do think that in a sense that that sort of

01:22:48   reckless impetuousness was the worst of Steve Jobs for Apple, and it kind of made him a

01:22:53   little bit ill-suited to run them the larger and larger they got. And I think it's the

01:22:57   exact sort of thing got them into the trouble with those options being backdated. Like,

01:23:03   I don't think he wasn't trying to cheat the system, I think, per se. He just wanted

01:23:10   what he wanted. And, you know, I think in hindsight, the way that whole options thing

01:23:17   played out, you know, got very, very careful to really getting in big trouble. And other

01:23:21   people did, you know, have to get thrown under the bus.

01:23:25   I don't really know what, like I don't know enough about the options that they comment

01:23:28   on at all, because I don't know what was going on.

01:23:30   I don't know what the reality is of it.

01:23:31   Well, they effectively erased some dates on some options and said that the board had approved

01:23:36   the changing of these dates when the board had not approved it.

01:23:40   The board ended up approving this change on the dates after they changed all the dates.

01:23:45   Oh, okay.

01:23:46   You know.

01:23:47   I do think, though, in general, though, I think one of the things that made Steve so

01:23:51   so compelling to pay attention to is that he was that reckless, and that most of the

01:23:57   time it worked for him. He was very, very good at breaking rules just enough to be interesting

01:24:06   and to get ahead, but not enough to really get himself in trouble.

01:24:10   Right. And you can see how that mindset and that boldness would be great at the negotiating

01:24:15   table in a room where you're just talking to people.

01:24:18   Right, where nothing's being recorded.

01:24:20   Right. And it's not so good when you're sending emails that are in a system that can be brought

01:24:25   up four years later.

01:24:26   Exactly.

01:24:27   In a way that Tim Cook is never going to send that email. And I feel like it's actually

01:24:34   in a way that Tim Cook is – and I'm not trying to argue here that Apple is better

01:24:39   off that Steve Jobs is dead or that Steve Jobs isn't the CEO. But that there are trade-offs

01:24:46   involved and there are certain ways where I think it's clear that Tim Cook is better

01:24:50   as CEO, because he's not impetuous.

01:24:54   Right, I mean, he's more level-headed, and it's going to work for

01:24:58   and against Apple in the long term. Steve's craziness

01:25:02   really brought a lot to the company and really was

01:25:06   necessary to achieve a lot of what they achieved. I still can't believe, I don't know

01:25:10   how much Steve was involved, I have to imagine it was a lot.

01:25:14   I still can't believe in fairly recent, some of the later things he did,

01:25:18   that iTunes match is, that that worked,

01:25:21   that that's legal, that he actually, or somebody,

01:25:23   negotiated that with the record companies.

01:25:26   - Yeah. - I can't, that's, like,

01:25:28   that's the kind of thing that,

01:25:30   it wasn't too far before he died,

01:25:32   but I assume he was involved in that,

01:25:35   because it's the kind of crazy negotiation that,

01:25:38   you know, now the record companies are allowing Amazon

01:25:41   and Google to do very similar things,

01:25:44   but I think only 'cause Apple did it first,

01:25:45   and now they want it-- - Showed that it worked.

01:25:47   and they want to keep, for the same reason

01:25:49   that the record companies gave Amazon MP3 DRM-free stuff

01:25:52   first, is that they don't want Apple to be

01:25:55   too powerful in that industry.

01:25:57   They don't want to be beholden to one company.

01:26:00   Apple got it out of them, and then eventually they

01:26:02   gave it to the other companies to help keep Apple in check.

01:26:05   I think, I'm sure that just a book about Apple's

01:26:11   various negotiations over the last 10 years

01:26:13   with the record companies would probably be a pretty good book.

01:26:16   Just the record in media companies, let's say.

01:26:19   But the original ones-- and I'm sure they were hard, too.

01:26:25   Just the original ones to get the original iTunes store off

01:26:28   the ground, I'm sure, were fascinating and were hard.

01:26:30   And Jobs' single personality had a large part of it.

01:26:34   But clearly, that was a lot easier,

01:26:37   because Apple was coming at it from the perspective of,

01:26:41   we're just little old Apple.

01:26:43   iPods only work on Macs, and Macs only have 2.5% of the market share.

01:26:49   And they've actually-- I forget where that's come out,

01:26:53   but somewhere that's actually come out where

01:26:55   I know that that was actually part of their pitch to the record labels

01:26:59   was, what's the worst that could happen?

01:27:03   Even if this thing-- because the record company people didn't even understand

01:27:06   the technology involved.

01:27:07   And what's the worst that could happen if somehow everybody

01:27:10   who has this iTunes software can get access to all the music on the thing, it's still only 2.5%

01:27:16   of the market. It's just this tiny little sliver. But that wisely and not accidentally, nothing in

01:27:27   the contracts ever said that iTunes was going to be Mac only forever. It just said that. And that

01:27:34   all of the record people just assumed that it was, because that's all Apple ever did, is make stuff

01:27:39   for their own hardware devices.

01:27:42   And I feel like taking it back to the beginning of Apple's

01:27:47   success really actually being a hindrance in many ways,

01:27:52   now the things they've tried to negotiate now

01:27:55   with some of the big companies, like the TV deals for Apple TV

01:27:58   and why we have iTunes match for music and not for movies or TV

01:28:02   quite yet, well, TV sort of sometimes.

01:28:04   And yeah.

01:28:06   we're seeing now, and anything they do with TV,

01:28:09   I think this is really what's holding it back,

01:28:12   is now all these companies are afraid to give Apple

01:28:15   too much power because they see what Apple's capable of now

01:28:20   that they're big and successful.

01:28:22   And they don't want Apple to cut them out

01:28:26   or to take all the profit out of their business.

01:28:29   And I think, too, that it's-- and that's what I mean.

01:28:33   And that's exactly the point that I wanted to make, too,

01:28:36   that I think that a win like iTunes match two years ago,

01:28:40   with Apple being the Apple we know today,

01:28:42   the industry Goliath, is such a more surprising win

01:28:45   because they didn't sneak it in through the back door.

01:28:47   Like there's no more, hey, we're just little old Apple.

01:28:50   What do you care what we do?

01:28:53   To me too, there's also a factor

01:28:54   that I'm sure plays into it,

01:28:56   which is that Apple has a sort of mystique

01:28:59   that you negotiate with Apple

01:29:01   and no matter what you think looking at the offer,

01:29:03   Apple always wins, right?

01:29:05   So, and did you see the thing recently that was this great New Yorker profile about this

01:29:12   guy, this professional like stage pickpocket in Las Vegas?

01:29:16   No, I didn't see it.

01:29:18   Apollo something.

01:29:19   All right, hold on a second.

01:29:21   Let me Google this.

01:29:23   Apollo pickpocket.

01:29:24   It's a great profile of this guy, Apollo Robbins.

01:29:29   So he's a professional pickpocket, but he doesn't steal things from people.

01:29:31   He does it as like an act and he'll go and he's just amazing.

01:29:36   You got to Google this guy, Apollo Robbins, and see the video of the way that he works.

01:29:45   The article, it's by Adam Green.

01:29:46   It starts out so great.

01:29:48   I'm just going to read the opening.

01:29:49   It's a real long article, so I'm not spoiling it.

01:29:54   A few years ago at a Las Vegas convention for magicians, Penn Jillette of the act Penn

01:29:58   and Teller was introduced to a soft-spoken young man named Apollo Robbins, who has a

01:30:02   reputation as a pickpocket of almost supernatural ability. Gillette, who ranks pickpockets,

01:30:08   says, "A few notches below hypnotists on the showbiz totem pole," that's where he ranks

01:30:14   them, "was holding court at a table of colleagues, and he asked Robbins for a demonstration,

01:30:19   ready to be unimpressed. Robbins demurred, claiming that he felt uncomfortable working

01:30:25   in front of other magicians. He pointed out, since Gillette was wearing only shorts and a sports shirt,

01:30:32   he wouldn't have much to work with. "Come on," Gillette said. "Steal something from me."

01:30:37   Again, Robbins begged off, but he offered to do a trick instead. He instructed Gillette to place

01:30:43   a ring that he was wearing on a piece of paper and trace its outline with a pen. By now, a small

01:30:49   crowd had gathered. Gillette removed his ring, put it down on the paper, and unclipped a pen from his

01:30:54   shirt and leaned forward, preparing to draw. After a moment, he froze and looked up. His

01:31:00   face was pale. "Fuck you," he said and slumped into a chair. Robbins held up a thin cylindrical

01:31:10   object, the cartridge from Gillette's pen.

01:31:13   Wow.

01:31:14   Right? Is it? I mean, and the thing—now, here's the thing that made me think about

01:31:18   story is that it's the idea that if you met this guy or if you met Penn Jillette

01:31:24   who you know is a magician and he starts telling you that he wants you know to do

01:31:28   something you know he's going to get the best of you right like you know that

01:31:32   he's going to fool you because he's the he's the magician and he's done the trick

01:31:35   a thousand times right like so I I feel like when other companies negotiate with

01:31:44   Apple they feel like they just know that they're going to get their pockets picked

01:31:47   Oh, yeah. And it's probably a pretty safe assumption.

01:31:50   Right? And that just like a magician who's going to make it harder and harder and say

01:31:55   like, "Look, look, I know that you think that I'm going to cheat you out of this.

01:31:58   I'm going to get your thing. I'm going to take your wallet right out of your pocket.

01:32:00   So here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to blindfold myself. Here, take this burlap

01:32:05   sack, put my head in the sack." It doesn't matter what you do, they're still going to

01:32:08   get you. No matter what terms Apple puts in.

01:32:11   Right, because you've got to figure, Apple's not going to enter a bad deal for them.

01:32:16   Right.

01:32:17   You know, they're obviously, you know, they've proven that they're pretty good at negotiating

01:32:21   deals.

01:32:22   The breakdown in my analogy, though, is that I think the music industry has done very well

01:32:27   by iTunes as well.

01:32:28   Now, the music industry might disagree because they want, like, all of the money, but I feel

01:32:33   like iTunes might have saved them from out-and-out bankruptcy or dissolution, like the entire

01:32:39   destruction of it.

01:32:40   Oh, yeah.

01:32:41   I think you're totally right, and I also agree that they don't really see it that way.

01:32:44   they see, most of the public remarks we've seen and the stories we've heard from various accounts of meetings and stuff,

01:32:52   most of what we've seen indicates that most of the big labels do think that iTunes was a bad thing for them,

01:32:59   and that it took over the industry from them. And it did take over a good amount of the control.

01:33:04   But at the time that iTunes came out, piracy was so big, and all of the other paid services were flopping like crazy.

01:33:13   And so it's really hard to argue that there was a bright future without iTunes in

01:33:20   2003 or whenever it came out. Right. Their plan, their plan more or less, I think, boiled down to

01:33:25   somehow figure out a way to stop piracy.

01:33:28   Right. And that they still believe that that was possible. In their minds,

01:33:32   they think that there was a way, somebody had it, some clever guy with a beard could have figured it out,

01:33:38   that there was a way to stop piracy and then things would go back to the way they were, which was beautiful.

01:33:43   Whereas Apple's argument, and this I'm not making, you know, this isn't my analysis,

01:33:48   this is explicitly how Steve Jobs pitched it on stage, was not that you're gonna beat piracy,

01:33:53   but that you can design something easier than piracy.

01:33:57   Right, you compete with it.

01:33:58   Right, compete with it in terms of being convenient and fast and available and accurate

01:34:04   so that if you type a certain song name you getting the actual song and have it come with the album art and

01:34:10   It's a guarantee the quality and everything

01:34:13   It's not going to be accidentally in Spanish or if you make it better people will pay 99 cents for it exactly

01:34:18   Or at least right at least enough of them will that it's better than the zero dollars that they were heading towards me

01:34:24   Right exactly like because they the future they were really heading to was one where one person somewhere buys the CD

01:34:31   And then everybody has a copy of all the music every album sells three copies

01:34:35   All from three people who are trying to be the first to get it uploaded yep

01:34:41   Alright, let me do the second sponsor second sponsor. I know you've never heard of this company. This is brand new

01:34:46   It's a company called talks. I don't ever heard of them

01:34:49   Alright they make they source

01:34:55   Roast and ship coffee now everybody I kid I kid because they've been a strong supporter of the talk show for the last few months

01:35:03   Here's the quote I want to I've been thinking about this

01:35:06   I'm gonna go back to this quote from Andy Warhol talking about coca-cola. There's a quote from Andy Warhol on coca-cola

01:35:13   What's great about this country?

01:35:15   Is that America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest?

01:35:21   You can be watching TV and see coca-cola and you know that the president drinks coke

01:35:26   Liz Taylor drinks coke and just think you can drink coke too

01:35:30   Coke is a coke and no amount of money can get you a better coke than the one the bum on the street corner is drinking

01:35:36   All the cokes are the same and all the cokes are good. Liz Taylor knows it

01:35:41   The president knows it the bum knows it and you know it. I love that quote. Yeah, I love it, too

01:35:46   And to me the way it relates to Tonks is this and it's it's this sort of

01:35:51   Mass market luxury items right in the old days, you know

01:35:57   let's go back to three four hundred years only like Kings and

01:36:00   and landowners could have like the best of anything and everybody else lived with like dirt floors and

01:36:05   One shirt that they had to like so themselves

01:36:09   Here's the thing you can buy the best coffee in the world and you don't have to pay

01:36:15   More than a reasonable amount for the coffee you'd get at the supermarket to get it. You just go to tonks org ton x org

01:36:22   Sign up for a free trial see for yourself

01:36:25   The free trial to me is key because then you don't have to take my word for you can believe it

01:36:29   But what you're getting is the best coffee in the world. I mean it is just phenomenal

01:36:33   And it's you know, you're not paying an arm and a leg for it

01:36:37   You're not paying you're not having to hire someone to roast coffee for you or something like that. They do all this work and

01:36:43   You're getting world-class stuff and you don't have to worry about it anymore

01:36:47   It's never in the back of your mind. You have to sit there and think I could be drinking better coffee instead

01:36:52   You just have it and it just shows up at your house

01:36:55   You don't even have to leave and and for me that this is going to be a bigger and bigger deal

01:36:58   It's like I swear to God it's like 13 degrees here

01:37:01   Yep

01:37:03   Not leaving the house to like go get more coffee. I

01:37:06   Couldn't be better just the fact that I've right downstairs in my kitchen

01:37:10   I've got a sealed up bag of Tonks coffee to start my day

01:37:13   I just can't imagine how it could be a better service.

01:37:18   The more I think about Tonks, the more I'm just blown away by the fact that I just can't

01:37:22   even imagine how it could be any better.

01:37:25   The other thought I have on Tonks, and it happens to me every single day that I make

01:37:29   Tonks coffee and sit here and work on Daring Fireball, is I'm always – I make coffee.

01:37:34   I make about three cups at a time.

01:37:37   That's about enough caffeine for me.

01:37:39   I'm always a little bit sad when I go to pour.

01:37:42   And I do this every time.

01:37:43   I go to pour a little more, and it ends up I'm already out of it.

01:37:46   And I thought I was on cup two, and I had one more.

01:37:50   And then I think to myself, well, I should go brew another pot.

01:37:53   Now, that's just way-- that's too much.

01:37:56   It's a little different in booze, but you can definitely have too much coffee,

01:37:58   and it can turn you off.

01:38:00   So I kind of have to-- you've got to race in it.

01:38:03   But it's a little sadness every day when I finish my pot of tongs.

01:38:06   and that's a good problem to have.

01:38:09   - Oh yeah.

01:38:10   - Tonks.org, go there and sign up for the free trial.

01:38:14   - One thing I love about Tonks,

01:38:16   and I should point out, I think this week,

01:38:19   yeah, they sponsored my site this week, I think, right?

01:38:23   I don't know, I hope I don't get this wrong.

01:38:25   Oh yeah, yeah, it was this week, all right.

01:38:26   - Complete coincidence that you're the guest on the show

01:38:28   and we're two for two on, it's just good sponsors, really.

01:38:31   Honestly. - Oh yeah.

01:38:32   And one thing, you know, people always ask,

01:38:35   First of all, to preface this,

01:38:38   they did a fantastic interview with Glenn Fleischman

01:38:41   on his new podcast, The New Disruptors, which is on Mule.

01:38:44   - Yeah, and I just-- - I just linked to it

01:38:46   before the show.

01:38:47   - Glenn is making me sick, he is.

01:38:49   I don't know, I've always been a huge fan of Glenn's work,

01:38:53   but he's like on fire lately,

01:38:55   and he's the editor of the magazine.

01:38:58   He's got this new podcast.

01:39:00   I linked it up today,

01:39:02   'cause my pal Jim Kudol's on this week's episode.

01:39:04   Almost linked up the Tonks episode, but I really kind of felt like well

01:39:09   I don't know. I didn't want to put a disclaimer in about Tonks being but it was it was a great episode. I did anyway

01:39:15   What one of the things I loved about it was?

01:39:18   That that Tony of Tonks

01:39:21   He talks a lot about how?

01:39:24   modern coffee consumer culture is really a gadget fetish of all these different coffee brewing equipment and and

01:39:31   the rituals and the techniques and the really nitty-gritty details of how you make it and and a lot of it matters and a lot

01:39:37   of it doesn't and and

01:39:39   I've often wanted I've thought about for years. I guess now everybody can steal my idea

01:39:45   I've thought about for years doing a series of posts on my site of actually actually setting up real

01:39:51   Blind taste tests for different things like does it matter whether you wet the error press filter before you use it?

01:39:58   You know, like all this stuff that I'm kind of skeptical, like whether it matters or not,

01:40:04   and I, you know, actually have like a real, like real tasters and a real double-blind

01:40:07   setup.

01:40:08   I'll probably never do it because that's a heck of a lot of work and setup and people.

01:40:12   But I really want somebody to do this because there is so much of it that's unnecessary.

01:40:19   I don't believe in a wedding that filters.

01:40:21   Neither do I. And I, you know, people will say, "Oh."

01:40:23   I don't understand how that could make a damn bit of difference. I really don't.

01:40:27   But I would love for someone to run a test like that.

01:40:29   If somebody ran the test that you're proposing and they said, "You know what?

01:40:33   It does make a difference," then I would do it.

01:40:35   But I don't.

01:40:36   Right.

01:40:37   Me too.

01:40:38   I would start.

01:40:39   Yeah.

01:40:40   But I tried it with the Chemex.

01:40:41   I own almost every popular method for brewing drip coffee.

01:40:44   I have a Chemex.

01:40:45   I have a vacuum pot.

01:40:46   Of course, I have the AeroPress and all sorts of other lesser-known ones.

01:40:51   And what I use every day is the AeroPress, this $25 plastic plunger thing.

01:40:57   And so people always ask me, "What kind of coffee?"

01:41:01   What kind of coffee maker should I get is kind of like asking a professional photographer

01:41:04   what kind of camera they have.

01:41:07   It matters less than you think it does.

01:41:11   And usually it's the wrong question.

01:41:13   It really is, especially since I guess they're getting better maybe, but the vast majority

01:41:18   of commercial coffee makers are incapable of making good coffee.

01:41:23   And in reality, the results from them are really quite similar usually.

01:41:26   Not to be snobby about it, but that there's some basic physics involved that the water

01:41:30   temperature just never even gets close enough to being hot enough, and so it doesn't matter

01:41:33   what kind of coffee you put in. It's never going to really get the most out of the coffee.

01:41:38   Or the problem I have with them is that I like to use a good ratio of coffee, like the

01:41:43   SCAA ratio. And usually that ratio, if you actually use it to make more than a few cups

01:41:49   of coffee in a drip pot, usually the filter basket will overflow.

01:41:54   (laughing)

01:41:56   - Which would be a real mess.

01:41:58   - It is.

01:41:59   It's happened to me a few times at relatives' houses.

01:42:01   That's always fun.

01:42:03   So whenever people ask me,

01:42:05   "What should I do to make good coffee?"

01:42:09   I used to not really have a very good answer for them.

01:42:11   'Cause I used to live above a roaster.

01:42:14   So my answer was, "Well, I have really good coffee

01:42:16   "because I live above a roaster.

01:42:18   "You don't have this potential,

01:42:19   "so try to find something good."

01:42:21   And in most places,

01:42:23   The reality is most places where most people live, there isn't a good roaster nearby.

01:42:28   My solution now is you need three things.

01:42:31   You need a clicky keyboard, a SodaStream...

01:42:34   No, you need a burger grinder, and that can be anywhere from $60 to $200.

01:42:40   My preferred one is $200.

01:42:41   It's the Baratza Virtuoso.

01:42:43   It is fantastic.

01:42:45   But there's a few that are in the $60 range that I think...

01:42:48   I haven't used them.

01:42:49   People said they're pretty good too, so that's fine.

01:42:52   You get a burger grinder, you grind fine.

01:42:55   You get an AeroPress for $25, and you get tongs.

01:42:59   And that's it.

01:42:59   Then you're done.

01:43:00   Then you have great coffee.

01:43:01   And the grinder is a little bit expensive,

01:43:06   but you don't have to buy this $300 coffee maker.

01:43:10   There is no integrated system.

01:43:11   There's no cartridges of anything special.

01:43:14   All the cartridge machines give you stale coffee

01:43:17   that's pre-ground.

01:43:20   There's no weird gimmicks or tricks.

01:43:22   It's just putting good coffee into a method

01:43:24   that extracts the flavor decently.

01:43:26   And that method happens to cost $25.

01:43:28   And that's it.

01:43:30   The answer is really that simple.

01:43:32   - And you can do it for even cheaper.

01:43:34   - You can, yeah.

01:43:35   - Just by having fresh coffee,

01:43:38   starting with good coffee, and just pour,

01:43:40   what is it, 200 degree water over.

01:43:43   - Yeah, like a pour over filter cone.

01:43:44   You can get one of those for like 11 bucks.

01:43:47   And pour overs have a higher tolerance for bad grinders.

01:43:52   So the AeroPress, I'd say you need a fine grind.

01:43:56   My grinder, I had cleaned it.

01:43:58   And I had improperly reassembled it earlier this week.

01:44:01   And so for a couple days, the grind was not getting fine.

01:44:04   It was way too coarse.

01:44:05   It was stuck at the highest setting.

01:44:07   And what happens then when you use too coarse of a grind

01:44:10   with the AeroPress?

01:44:11   Totally changes the flavor.

01:44:12   It makes it weaker and almost like a little more sour,

01:44:16   or a little more tart, because it's missing some of the depth.

01:44:21   I'm probably describing it wrong.

01:44:23   I don't want to sound like a wine taster.

01:44:25   Right.

01:44:26   Well, there is something weird, though.

01:44:28   There is something weird about coffee

01:44:29   that's unlike anything else to me, which

01:44:31   is that if you make it too weak, it tastes worse.

01:44:34   But it tastes worse in some ways in a stronger flavored way.

01:44:40   Right?

01:44:40   Well, yeah.

01:44:41   And there's some of that, like sometimes the worst tasting

01:44:44   elements will be extracted more in badly made coffee. There's things like that that go

01:44:50   into it.

01:44:51   As opposed to, let's say, liquor, where if you just don't have a taste for, say,

01:44:56   bourbon straight, that watering it down might make it a lot more palatable or even enjoyable,

01:45:05   that coffee that's too weak, it's worse. Not because it has no taste, but because,

01:45:11   Like you said, it extracts the wrong tastes and not that there's actual natural sweetness

01:45:16   to coffee that just never gets out, et cetera.

01:45:19   One of my favorite tweets—I quoted it before—but one of my favorite tweets was somebody who

01:45:23   tweeted—talk show listener who said that he'd always taken his coffee with sugar

01:45:28   until he tried Tonks and then tried it without sugar and it was the first time he didn't

01:45:32   feel like he needed to put sugar in his coffee.

01:45:34   Exactly. I mean, that encapsulates it so much. Great coffee does not need anything added

01:45:40   to it.

01:45:41   Right. And I think casual people have the misconception that we go on and on about Tonks

01:45:46   and how great it is, and they go around the world, and that people think, "Well, my

01:45:50   God, that coffee is probably so strong that it has all of these." And they associate

01:45:54   strength with these bitter, unpleasant tastes that they think is what strong coffee is,

01:46:00   which is really just poorly made or over-roasted coffee or stale coffee, that those are the

01:46:08   tastes that are exaggerated. It's actually, I think, the opposite. It's these completely

01:46:14   different flavors that really come out.

01:46:15   Oh, yeah, definitely. Most people have never had really great coffee that could be drank

01:46:22   black and would still taste really good.

01:46:25   And people, there's this whole pile of BS

01:46:28   around coffee marketing in the mass market,

01:46:33   like in grocery stores and in convenience store chains

01:46:37   and everything, and there's all this marketing

01:46:40   that goes into making people think that, say,

01:46:44   Trader Joe's coffee is better than Dunkin' Donuts coffee

01:46:47   and Dunkin' Donuts coffee is better than 7-Eleven coffee

01:46:50   and all this stuff, and the reality is,

01:46:52   almost all the coffee that most people

01:46:54   have ever heard of is terrible.

01:46:56   - I haven't. - And it's not because

01:46:58   it's not because there's some grand conspiracy,

01:47:01   it's because it's really hard to make great coffee

01:47:04   at that large of a scale, and you can't make it

01:47:07   so it's shelf-stable for very long.

01:47:09   - I have a certain weak spot for Dunkin' Donuts coffee.

01:47:12   I wouldn't hail it as good coffee,

01:47:15   but I do think that it's, I don't know,

01:47:18   And it is also, to me, it's also very,

01:47:20   like McDonald's famously is supposed to be,

01:47:23   it's very, I don't know about their coffee,

01:47:25   but that McDonald's food, but at Dunkin' Donuts,

01:47:27   coffee always tastes exactly the same.

01:47:30   Doesn't matter where you are, what Dunkin' Donuts,

01:47:33   to me it always tastes exactly the same.

01:47:35   I wouldn't go out of my way to get Dunkin' Donuts,

01:47:37   but in a pinch where I had my choice between,

01:47:40   two or three chain places to buy coffee,

01:47:45   I would go to Dunkin' Donuts.

01:47:46   I mean, good coffee is a lot more like fresh produce,

01:47:51   in that you kind of can't make it that good without introducing

01:47:55   some inconsistency because you're kind of closer to the metal.

01:47:59   Everything's a little more fresh,

01:48:01   a little more small batch usually.

01:48:02   Coffee is more like tomatoes.

01:48:07   You'll have some years where tomatoes were better that year.

01:48:11   Coffee is the same way.

01:48:12   Like, coffee from certain countries in certain--

01:48:15   kind of like wine.

01:48:16   From certain countries, it's better than other countries if you have tastes that are

01:48:19   a certain way.

01:48:21   Certain years will be better than other years.

01:48:23   Certain farms within those countries will be a little bit better than other ones.

01:48:27   It's all ... There's so much that goes into it.

01:48:30   It's very hard to make coffee consistently the same way all the time without blending

01:48:36   a whole bunch of different origins together and standardizing everything and kind of removing

01:48:39   all the personality from it and making it just this one consistent bland product like

01:48:44   I like a McDonald's hamburger.

01:48:46   - Do you like, what about Pete's?

01:48:48   Can you take Pete's?

01:48:49   - I only ever have Pete's when I'm at WWDC.

01:48:53   - You go to the one at 3rd and Howard.

01:48:57   - Well, there's two, yeah,

01:48:59   there's the one across from the W,

01:49:01   and then there's the one down the street

01:49:02   from Moscone along that cross street.

01:49:04   - Oh, see, I don't know that one.

01:49:07   I know the one at 3rd and Howard

01:49:08   that's over there by the W in the St. Regis.

01:49:11   - Yeah, so that, Peet's is, in my opinion,

01:49:15   it's very similar to Starbucks, but better.

01:49:18   So it's still the same general category of store,

01:49:23   it still has the same challenges of,

01:49:25   it's still a pretty large scale operation,

01:49:28   no one is roasting in that store,

01:49:31   the people who are brewing it in that store,

01:49:33   the employees might not be very particularly good

01:49:35   at brewing it, or really care to follow

01:49:38   the discard timers and stuff like that.

01:49:40   But it's decent and I would, whenever I'm there,

01:49:45   usually I'll go to Pete's because around the corner

01:49:48   in a few blocks in the opposite direction,

01:49:51   there's Blue Bottle.

01:49:52   - Right.

01:49:53   - Which Blue Bottle Coffee is very good,

01:49:55   but there's usually like a 45 minute line at the door

01:49:57   whenever I have to get to a session in the morning.

01:49:59   - And it's gotten worse.

01:50:01   - Yes, it has.

01:50:02   - It's like word has spread.

01:50:04   I think that there's more people who work in that area.

01:50:06   Like, I don't know, maybe it's all the square people.

01:50:08   - Yeah.

01:50:09   But it has gotten worse.

01:50:10   Yeah, so it's further away and the line is longer.

01:50:13   It used to be that you could go to Blue Bottle and at least it was always my luck that you

01:50:18   could go and you had to wait, but you had to wait like 10 minutes and it seemed well

01:50:21   worth it.

01:50:22   Because even if you wanted to said, "Screw it, I'll just walk to Pete's," Pete's

01:50:27   there and back was a 20-minute walk.

01:50:29   Whereas now, yeah, you go there and it is like the line is out and around the corner.

01:50:34   Yeah.

01:50:35   skip a whole session, maybe like the after-lunch session, if I decide, "Oh, I'm kind of tired,"

01:50:41   I'll skip after-lunch session. Then I'll take an hour and go to Blue Bottle and then come

01:50:45   back and just barely make it back in time. But yeah, normally I just go to Pete's because

01:50:52   it's not amazing, but it's good.

01:50:54   I saw Matt Honan. You know Matt? He writes at Wired.

01:50:58   I know of him. I haven't actually met him.

01:51:00   I saw him tweeting from CES, where he was covering from Wired.

01:51:04   And he brought a whole coffee apparatus with him to CES

01:51:08   to make it in his room, because he didn't want to drink mass market coffee.

01:51:14   Can't blame the guy.

01:51:15   No, I've never seen that before, though.

01:51:17   I mean, a lot of hotel rooms have those coffee makers

01:51:20   in the bathroom, which is always really gross.

01:51:22   It always kind of feels dirty.

01:51:24   Oh, it feels super dirty to me.

01:51:26   Are you putting food-making equipment in a bathroom?

01:51:29   I mean, I don't know.

01:51:30   I know, practically speaking, OK, it has a faucet.

01:51:35   It has a sink.

01:51:36   That makes sense.

01:51:37   But I still never feel right.

01:51:39   I think that the way--

01:51:41   I don't think that any hotel should put a coffee

01:51:43   maker in the hotel room.

01:51:44   I think if they feel that their guests want coffee

01:51:47   in the morning, they should have coffee in the lobby

01:51:49   and just give it to them.

01:51:51   I feel like the little coffee maker in the hotel room

01:51:53   is the grossest thing in modern hotels.

01:51:58   Although I will say the one pimping that I can do here that's relevant, it's timely,

01:52:04   is the hotel in Wellington for web stock that they put us up in as speakers for web stock

01:52:11   two years ago. What's the name of that hotel? It's the hotel that has the hippopotamus.

01:52:17   The hippopotamus is the bar. I think it's called the Museum Hotel. Something like that.

01:52:22   Let's see.

01:52:23   They have, in all the rooms, they have pre-ground packets of coffee, but it's from a local

01:52:28   roaster and they're pretty good, and they give you a Bodum French press to brew it in

01:52:33   and an electric kettle to boil the water with. So every morning there in Wellington, I would

01:52:40   make coffee in this kettle in this French press in my room, and it was the best hotel

01:52:45   coffee I've ever had.

01:52:46   All right, but that's different. It wasn't in the bathroom, though, was it?

01:52:49   No. We had the suites. It was like a whole kitchen. It was really nice.

01:52:52   Exactly. Right. That's a whole different ballgame. To me, it's not a general opposition

01:52:57   to making coffee in your hotel room, it's using a shitty little Mr. Coffee in the bathroom.

01:53:04   You just don't –

01:53:05   It's kind of demeaning.

01:53:06   I don't even like it when I see somebody bring a drink into the bathroom. It's like,

01:53:09   "What are you going to do with that? Are you going to drink that?" I mean, I don't

01:53:13   know.

01:53:14   Well, it's worse when you see them bring it out of the bathroom because then you know

01:53:16   – if they bring it in, they could plausibly leave it there.

01:53:19   Right. Maybe they're going to ditch it. But if it's in a glass or something like

01:53:23   that, I don't know. Finish it up, get rid of it, and then go to the bathroom. Don't

01:53:26   Right.

01:53:27   Glass in the bathroom.

01:53:28   Jimmy, Christ.

01:53:29   It is the – I just looked it up and now it's gone.

01:53:33   It's the –

01:53:34   Museum, right?

01:53:36   Museum Art Hotel.

01:53:37   Okay.

01:53:38   In Wellington.

01:53:39   And that is a perfect segue.

01:53:40   I saw on Twitter you were working on your old fashions.

01:53:45   I was.

01:53:47   Which it ties into – did you listen to the show Merlin Was On?

01:53:50   Merlin and I actually talked about this.

01:53:51   Of course.

01:53:52   We were at Webstock two years ago in February, and the bar-- this is the Hippopotamus Bar.

01:54:01   You were going to say Hippopopotamus.

01:54:02   This is what we all had taken to calling it.

01:54:06   The Hippopotamus Bar was having a special old-fashioned month where they had an entire

01:54:11   section-- or maybe it was the entire menu.

01:54:13   I don't know.

01:54:14   It was devoted to old-fashioned invariants on the old-fashioned cocktail.

01:54:19   And there was a great bartender there named Houston.

01:54:21   I saw it.

01:54:22   So you were working on your Houston-style old-fashioned?

01:54:25   Indeed.

01:54:26   I was trying to replicate it as best I can.

01:54:30   So what we had from Houston with the old-fashioned,

01:54:34   it was Buffalo Trace, which is-- in general,

01:54:36   Buffalo Trace is my favorite normal bourbon,

01:54:42   like not ultra special, not cheap, like a normal bourbon.

01:54:45   If you're going to have a bourbon,

01:54:46   especially if you're going to be making

01:54:47   a lot of mixed drinks with it, I highly

01:54:49   recommend Buffalo Trace.

01:54:50   Not expensive, though, either, I think,

01:54:51   here in Pennsylvania.

01:54:52   - Yeah, not too bad.

01:54:53   It's not cheap.

01:54:54   - $23 or so?

01:54:56   - That's not bad at all.

01:54:56   - $22, $23, and that compares to, let's say,

01:54:59   like a bottle of Jim Beam for like maybe $14, $15.

01:55:02   - Yeah, before this, I was into Knob Creek

01:55:05   and Woodford Reserve, those are both very good,

01:55:07   but I think Buffalo Trace is better than both of those,

01:55:09   in my opinion, at least.

01:55:10   - I think it's better for old-fashioned.

01:55:11   And Houston has me convinced,

01:55:13   and I have made an enormous number of old-fashioneds

01:55:16   over the last two years,

01:55:17   and Buffalo Trace you cannot go wrong with, I believe.

01:55:20   So what I found-- so the Houston recipe was Buffalo Trace

01:55:24   Demerara sugar, which for-- Demerara sugar, I guess,

01:55:28   is more popular outside of America, or outside of the US.

01:55:32   But in the US, it's very similar to light brown sugar.

01:55:35   It's just sugar with some molasses still in it.

01:55:39   And so it's kind of between light and dark brown.

01:55:42   So Buffalo Trace Demerara sugar and some kind of bitters.

01:55:47   I don't know what kind of bitters he was using.

01:55:50   And for the citrus element, he used grapefruit.

01:55:53   So he would do a grapefruit rind.

01:55:55   He would twist it, burn the oil with a little puff of flame,

01:55:57   and rub it around the glass and drop it in.

01:55:59   So grapefruit was a citrus, demerara sugar,

01:56:02   some kind of bitters, and Buffalo Trace.

01:56:04   I think I've actually come fairly close.

01:56:05   I haven't tried it with a fresh grapefruit yet.

01:56:07   But what I did find-- I have a pretty nice,

01:56:11   kind of like boutiquey grocery store.

01:56:13   So I went there, and they sold me Scrappy's Bitters.

01:56:19   It's a bottle, and it's the grapefruit flavor of bitters.

01:56:22   And so I used that with Buffalo Trace,

01:56:27   and I made a simple syrup of Demerara sugar.

01:56:30   And with just those three ingredients, you know--

01:56:33   - Is it a one-to-one simple syrup or a two-to-one?

01:56:36   - I don't know offhand.

01:56:38   I wrote down, I was just, I was kinda doing it as I went,

01:56:41   so I wrote down, I used 50 grams of sugar

01:56:44   to four ounces of hot water.

01:56:47   So I don't think it's one-to-one,

01:56:48   But it's weaker than that.

01:56:52   So yeah, I've been using that, just a little bit of that,

01:56:54   the bourbon, a good amount of bitters,

01:56:56   like three or four of the little splashes,

01:56:59   because it comes out kind of slowly.

01:57:00   It's like one drop at a time.

01:57:02   And it's pretty good.

01:57:04   And no fruit, no ice.

01:57:06   There's a great site, if you're into making

01:57:08   your own old-fashioned-- here, I had it open here,

01:57:11   because I knew we'd talk about this.

01:57:13   It's oldfashioned101.com.

01:57:16   And it's a one-page site, very, very simple,

01:57:21   and it's like here's the five steps to make an old-fashioned,

01:57:24   here's what an old-fashioned is and isn't.

01:57:27   And all it is is sugar--

01:57:31   - Something sweet, something bitter.

01:57:34   - And the spirit, and that's,

01:57:36   everything else is optional or shouldn't be there.

01:57:38   'Cause I love the old-fashioned.

01:57:41   I'm not that big into most liquor drinks.

01:57:43   I really don't care for most of them.

01:57:45   I'm usually more of a snobby craft beer guy.

01:57:49   But I do like bourbon a lot,

01:57:51   and so I developed a taste for the old-fashioned

01:57:54   when either the beer selection somewhere is terrible

01:57:58   or when it just makes more sense to have liquor

01:58:01   for context reasons.

01:58:03   So I've ordered old-fashioneds at a few places,

01:58:07   and they're usually terrible,

01:58:10   'cause usually it's like a fruit smoothie in there.

01:58:14   You wonder what these people were thinking

01:58:17   when they made it.

01:58:18   - Right.

01:58:19   The history of it is convoluted.

01:58:22   And I think I'm getting this.

01:58:23   There's a great book that I have.

01:58:25   I recommend it highly.

01:58:25   I'll put a link in the show totes.

01:58:27   But the book is called Bitters.

01:58:29   It's by a guy named Brad Thomas Parsons.

01:58:31   And the whole book is ostensibly just about bitters,

01:58:34   not even cocktails in general, just bitters.

01:58:37   But then it's got drink recipes

01:58:39   and the old fashioned is the original.

01:58:43   I'm always so disappointed when I go to a bar that looks like they might have a real

01:58:46   old-fashioned, a good old-fashioned.

01:58:48   There's got to be a name for it.

01:58:49   I think that in this bitters book that Brad Parsons has a name for that old-fashioned.

01:58:54   I can't think of it offhand, though, but he has a good disparaging name for it.

01:59:00   I'll give you my old-fashioned recipe.

01:59:01   Here's my old-fashioned recipe.

01:59:05   I'm a big fan of Fee Brothers bitters.

01:59:08   F-E-E Brothers.

01:59:09   I've heard of them.

01:59:10   I haven't seen them yet, but I heard of them.

01:59:11   You can get them on Amazon.

01:59:13   I think they sell them through a third party seller called KegWorks.

01:59:16   And maybe it'd be better to just go to kegworks.com.

01:59:19   I don't know.

01:59:19   But if you go to Amazon and search for Fee Brothers, you'll find it.

01:59:22   They have a sampler where you can get--

01:59:24   I think there's at least four varieties, which is A,

01:59:26   they're standard bitters, which are like their take on Angostura bitters,

01:59:31   which I think I like a little better than Angostura.

01:59:34   But I'm not quite sure what would happen if I did a blind taste test.

01:59:38   But they're at least as good.

01:59:41   They have orange bitters, grapefruit bitters, and lemon bitters.

01:59:44   So I think their four-pack is regular Angostura, orange, lemon, grapefruit.

01:59:50   I really like the orange bitters.

01:59:52   So my old-fashioned recipe-- two small dashes of orange bitters,

01:59:58   Fee Brothers, two small dashes of their regular bitters,

02:00:03   their Angostura bitters.

02:00:04   One Demerara-- how do you pronounce it?

02:00:08   Yeah, Demerara.

02:00:09   Demerara Sugar Cube.

02:00:10   little bit of water, just a little bit, just enough to get the sugar cube dissolved.

02:00:14   But, here's the thing, I always take it out of a SodaStream bottle, a little bit of fizzy water.

02:00:18   Just a little, just enough in the mixing thing to get the sugar to dissolve.

02:00:22   You're violating one of these rules on this site.

02:00:26   Which is what, you never add water?

02:00:28   There is no Celsius soda water, ginger ale, or lemon soda in an old-fashioned.

02:00:31   See, I just put a little bit, there's no bubbles in the drink, you don't taste any carbonation in the drink.

02:00:36   See, that's where I think what they're talking about.

02:00:39   I don't know.

02:00:40   I like it with the--

02:00:41   It's not like half seltzer.

02:00:42   I think it just makes more fun to muddle up the sugar cube if you see bubbles exploding.

02:00:46   See, that's why the reason I make the syrup in advance is I have zero tolerance for having

02:00:50   to try to dissolve sugar in cold water.

02:00:53   It's such a pain, and I never get it all.

02:00:55   It's like, same thing with iced coffee.

02:00:59   If anything, that's on my list of things to try is to start keeping some simple syrup

02:01:03   in the fridge.

02:01:05   Can you carbonate simple syrup?

02:01:07   - Well, the SodaStream warns you not to carbonate

02:01:09   anything but plain water, like not sweeten it first.

02:01:12   - 'Cause when you make soda with it,

02:01:14   they tell you to make the water first

02:01:15   and then throw shit in later.

02:01:16   - Right, presumably 'cause they don't wanna get sugar

02:01:19   and stuff all up in the nozzle

02:01:20   and have it all get infected.

02:01:21   I assume-- - Can you boil it?

02:01:24   Can you make the fizzy water and then boil it?

02:01:26   Or that would take all the carbonation out of it?

02:01:28   - It would probably take most of it out

02:01:30   if it didn't take all of it out.

02:01:32   - Wouldn't hurt, though.

02:01:33   You don't need to dissolve it in hot water.

02:01:36   It just takes way longer in cold water.

02:01:39   So you could try it, but then how long would it really

02:01:41   stay fizzy in the fridge?

02:01:43   I don't think.

02:01:44   With the amount of water I'm putting into the old fashioned,

02:01:46   I'm willing to bet that it doesn't make a damn bit

02:01:48   of difference.

02:01:49   So it's probably just me being a goof,

02:01:52   thinking I'm being clever by using it.

02:01:54   But anyway, just enough water.

02:01:56   Muddle that up.

02:01:57   Get that sugar cube as dissolved as you can get it.

02:02:00   Put a whole bunch of big fistful of cracked ice in there,

02:02:03   two ounces of bourbon.

02:02:04   Stir that thing for as long as you can bear to stir it.

02:02:07   Just sit there and stir it for, I don't know, 30, 40 seconds.

02:02:11   And that's it.

02:02:12   Then strain it.

02:02:13   Put it in a glass with one big-ass ice cube.

02:02:16   And then orange peel, lemon peel,

02:02:18   whatever you've got in the house, some kind of citrus peel.

02:02:20   Put it on top.

02:02:21   Now, how do you manage your naked fruits?

02:02:25   Like, I haven't yet gotten into the peels part of it

02:02:30   yet because I'm not going to take part of lemon off,

02:02:33   and what do I do with the rest of that lemon?

02:02:34   - Well, you put it in the fridge.

02:02:36   - Yeah, so eventually you have a half or fully naked lemon

02:02:40   in the fridge that's just going bad.

02:02:42   It just kind of, I don't know.

02:02:44   - Yeah, you end up throwing away some lemons.

02:02:47   I'll eat the oranges sometimes,

02:02:48   but I end up throwing some of that away.

02:02:49   - I guess lemons cost like a quarter each right now.

02:02:52   - I effectively buy an awful lot of citrus fruit

02:02:55   that I only use for the rinds.

02:02:58   If I could just buy fresh lemon and orange rinds, I would do that.

02:03:03   But you can't.

02:03:04   You can get dry ones, but it kind of ruins the point of this point.

02:03:08   But this is another one.

02:03:09   This is another case where even a guy-- and I really do not

02:03:13   have any kind of cooking aptitude.

02:03:14   I'm not good at that.

02:03:17   I don't have the patience for it.

02:03:18   But I'll tell you what.

02:03:19   I think anybody, any even true klutz in the kitchen,

02:03:24   can learn to make a world-class old-fashioned,

02:03:26   like an old-fashioned that is as good as anybody in the world can afford or will make. It doesn't

02:03:33   take anything more than $20 bourbon, sugar cubes, and a lemon you can get at any supermarket

02:03:40   or an orange.

02:03:41   Tim Cynova Yeah. I mean, that's like I was so surprised

02:03:43   when I attempted to replicate these awesome old-fashioned that we've been thinking about

02:03:47   for two years that we had in New Zealand. I attempted to replicate it three days ago

02:03:53   and just like my second try was perfect because it turns out they were just doing really good

02:03:59   ingredients like they weren't doing any crazy special things like my like it was really

02:04:04   easy to replicate that or at least get very very close to it because it is really that

02:04:09   simple yeah and that's one thing too that uh houston down there at the hip hop eponymous

02:04:15   he was very very generous about his technique like once we fell in love with the drink and

02:04:19   we started hectoring up about it. He was almost conducting a clinic for us each time he made

02:04:25   one.

02:04:26   Yeah, and we were having him make like eight at a time to satisfy our increasingly growing

02:04:30   crowd that always just wanted those. So we were constantly watching him make more of

02:04:35   them, so it was easy to pick it up.

02:04:38   And I'm looking at Amazon. You can get the Fee Brothers bidder. I mean, bidders is not

02:04:42   as—you're not going to go bust building your little bidders collection. A bottle of

02:04:47   Fee Brothers is like 10 bucks.

02:04:49   see my bottle of grapefruit was like 20 so I was I was a little on the fence

02:04:53   about buying it but then I realized you know you only use like a drop at a time

02:04:55   right uh yeah gotta say my scrappies grapefruit is really good does fee

02:04:59   brothers offer a grapefruit they do I said they have orange lemon grapefruit

02:05:04   and then the aromatic they call it aromatic the angus but that's

02:05:07   effectively angust or Oh cherry they also have cherry I've never tried that

02:05:12   in three years when I finally go through this bottle of bitters maybe I'll buy

02:05:15   there's next they have rhubarb bitters see I don't know what the hell that is

02:05:19   it's it's one of those filler fruits they put in pies and nobody likes peach

02:05:23   bitters they have peach Aztec chocolate cocktail bitters boy fee brothers has a

02:05:28   lot of bitters I haven't tried these it's fairly extensive yeah I don't know

02:05:33   if fee brothers has a website let me see before we sign off

02:05:37   can I just take a guess are they a Brooklyn company that doesn't say they

02:05:44   They do. I just took a guess. I didn't even Google it. No, they're in Rochester, Rochester,

02:05:49   New York.

02:05:50   Okay. All right. I got the state right, at least.

02:05:51   So you can go to feebrothers.com and see more. Anyway, they're great, and it's fantastic.

02:05:58   According to Wikipedia, they offer vacuum-sealed venison flavored.

02:06:01   To me, it's funny that we're doing this.

02:06:04   It's all too specific.

02:06:06   It's perfect that we're doing this at nighttime because typical talk shows are recorded in

02:06:11   And it pairs well with the Tonks thing too though because to me start my day trying to make the best coffee

02:06:16   I possibly can and then at night, you know make it perfect old-fashioned

02:06:20   Can't go wrong can't go wrong. It's so easy

02:06:23   We should get fee brothers to sponsor the show and Buffalo Trace and Buffalo Trace those bastards

02:06:29   Alright Marco. Thank you very much for being it. This is a long show, but I thought I think it was very thanks

02:06:34   I think it's worth it