12: The Rule of Two


00:00:00   Okay, whew, alright, gotta stretch here, get ready.

00:00:04   The official podcasters warm up.

00:00:06   Yeah, exactly.

00:00:07   Just stretch your neck a little bit.

00:00:08   Yeah, that's right, limber up.

00:00:11   Do you know the rule of two, Myke?

00:00:14   I have no idea what you're talking about.

00:00:16   This is a thing that I love.

00:00:17   The rule of two is that two is one and one is none.

00:00:23   This is applicable to so many things in your life.

00:00:27   As a starting point, I often like to think of the rule of two with things that you have

00:00:33   around the house.

00:00:35   So for example, if you have one roll of toilet paper, you really don't have any toilet paper.

00:00:42   Because when that one runs out, you're in trouble.

00:00:44   So you really need two rolls of toilet paper at all times.

00:00:50   It's a redundancy rule, basically, is where this comes from.

00:00:52   I'm not surprised you love it.

00:00:54   I do love it.

00:00:55   This is like, I guess your door right in the old flat, that applied to the rule of two,

00:01:01   because the one door was just no good. You may as well have no doors.

00:01:05   That's true. The one door in our flat was like no doors in our flat. If you have two doors then

00:01:10   it's like one door. Which is exactly how I think of our current flat. That my wife can be in a room

00:01:16   where I can't hear her because there are two doors between us which act like one door should.

00:01:21   So that's a good point. I didn't even think about it in this way.

00:01:24   But this is one of my little pieces of advice for trying to run a life very smoothly, is that

00:01:30   everything that you can possibly have two of, you should.

00:01:34   Two shampoo bottles, two bottles of vitamins, two boxes of cereal, two cartons of eggs.

00:01:42   You want duplicates of everything.

00:01:44   And then when you're down to one of those things, that's the sign that you need to buy the next one.

00:01:50   And this way you're never out. You're never out of anything.

00:01:52   Do you think this sounds good?

00:01:53   This does sound good. I like this theory.

00:01:56   It's applicable to everything in your whole life. Everything that's important.

00:01:59   I used to keep a spare shirt and tie at school because you never know when you're going to

00:02:06   spill something on your shirt or your tie. So if you only have one shirt, it's like you have no

00:02:10   shirts. Same thing with the tie. It's this way with computer files. You only have one copy of

00:02:15   that photo of your baby. Guess what? You have no copies of that photo of your baby. I even think

00:02:19   it's applicable to work. If you have one source of income, in many ways it's like you have no sources of income.

00:02:27   Because if something happens with your main job, you are in lots and lots of trouble.

00:02:32   One source of income, none source of income.

00:02:35   That's my happy thought for the day.

00:02:37   Can we start every episode like this? It's like Jerry Springer, right?

00:02:41   We had to have Grey's beginning thought.

00:02:43   Oh, no, that's too much. Then I have to prepare too much, Myke. That's not gonna happen.

00:02:47   I have to prepare for the show all the time now.

00:02:50   I very much enjoyed that. I feel like my life is enriched. I feel like I understand a little

00:02:54   bit more about your redundancy system now. But I would like to apply this to this rule

00:03:00   of two to one more thing. If you have bought a cortex t-shirt, you should buy another one.

00:03:07   Look at you, businessman Myke. What a perfect segue.

00:03:10   It even says redundant t-shirt on the back. You want another one. Plus if you bought the gray one, you should buy a blue one. And if you bought a blue one, you should buy another blue one.

00:03:20   I'm just realizing I did buy one gray cortex t-shirt, but I should definitely buy another gray cortex t-shirt.

00:03:25   Or a blue one.

00:03:27   How are the shirt sales doing, Myke? You know all the behind the... I know nothing about this Teespring thing. How's it going? What's it look like?

00:03:33   Currently, you wear about two-thirds gray to one-third blue.

00:03:39   Hmm. That seems pretty good. Seems pretty good.

00:03:42   Nope.

00:03:43   No? You don't think so?

00:03:44   Should be the other way around. Actually it should be like 75% blue.

00:03:48   25% gray.

00:03:50   Now if anything it should be 75% gray.

00:03:52   There should be gray domination on those t-shirts.

00:03:54   I'm honestly surprised that you were able to eek out a third blue.

00:03:58   You got some solid supporters there, Myke.

00:04:00   People love me gray.

00:04:01   I think they just love blue.

00:04:03   I think that's what it is.

00:04:04   So the t-shirts are still available.

00:04:06   I would and gray would very much love it if you would buy one.

00:04:09   and you'll be able to show your support for our show proudly on your body,

00:04:15   which is the best way to show your support for something.

00:04:18   And the t-shirts are available until September 15th.

00:04:21   When is the show coming out and how long do people have? How does that work?

00:04:24   So this show will be coming out on the 7th.

00:04:27   So they will have one week from when the show is released.

00:04:30   Alright.

00:04:30   But this is the last time they will hear about it from Ask Ray.

00:04:33   Okay.

00:04:34   Because by the time the next episode of this show comes out,

00:04:37   the t-shirts will have already been sold.

00:04:39   and be on the printer.

00:04:40   Shipping to the lucky people around the world.

00:04:43   All over the globe.

00:04:44   Go buy some more grey shirts.

00:04:45   I like it.

00:04:46   So, as is normal with the show, we can never predict what people will want to hear about

00:04:53   and apparently slow music is a thing that people really care about.

00:04:58   So we've had lots of follow up on super slow music.

00:05:02   So a few people have told us why this exists and a few people have sent us in some stuff

00:05:07   that makes it.

00:05:08   So, Zantari on the Reddit has sent in a link to a piece of software called PoreStretch,

00:05:15   which is free and the source code is available online, and this is the software that people

00:05:19   use to stretch out the songs.

00:05:22   So you can go and download it and you can stretch out your own music.

00:05:25   He also provided an explanation for how this works.

00:05:28   I'm not even going to attempt it because it confuses me.

00:05:32   Yes, I did see some feedback about how this works, and people were talking about Fourier

00:05:37   transforms and my only thought on that was oh yes I remember a time when I used

00:05:41   to understand Fourier transforms but that time is not now it's long gone and

00:05:45   now I no longer understand how they work it's math magic I wouldn't have even

00:05:49   said them like that the word the way you pronounce that word is not even I was

00:05:53   like Fourier but for right how did you say it I think it's Fourier Fourier

00:05:57   Fourier very fancy it's been a long time though it's a French it's probably a

00:06:01   French mathematicians where it comes from we'll go with that and then Andrew

00:06:04   on the Reddit provided a link to an interview with the creator of Paul Stretch, a guy called

00:06:08   Paul Nasaka. So there's an interview where he talks about why he made it and how it works

00:06:12   and that kind of stuff. So if you are interested, maybe you could create your own music. Maybe

00:06:16   someone should make a really, really super slow version of the Cortex intro tone and

00:06:21   just see how that comes out. Like for four hours or something.

00:06:24   We did get a bunch of other feedback. The one I liked the best was someone sent along

00:06:29   the Windows startup sounds slowed 4,000%.

00:06:33   I think that is my favorite so far

00:06:35   of all the various ones that I've heard.

00:06:36   They are surprisingly relaxing and once again,

00:06:39   very good ambient music to hear the Windows startup chime

00:06:43   slow down 4,000% along with a few other Windows sounds.

00:06:46   So I like that one.

00:06:47   I was listening to that the other day.

00:06:48   - I liked the Jurassic Park theme,

00:06:50   which Simon sent in, which is a thousand times slower.

00:06:53   And because it's only a thousand times,

00:06:56   you can still kind of hear it in there, you know?

00:06:59   But I was listening to it for about 25 minutes and I don't think I got to the main crescendo.

00:07:04   I was like, "I think I'm done now."

00:07:06   I was like, "Is one of those things where I kind of forgot it was playing?

00:07:10   It was just this noise in the background."

00:07:13   And then I was like, "Okay, I'm done."

00:07:15   I looked at the SoundCloud page and it said, "You've got another half an hour to go."

00:07:20   That's why these things are good though.

00:07:22   They are surprisingly good ambient background music that you just forget about very quickly,

00:07:29   but it's still there occupying that monkey part of your brain which is always looking

00:07:33   for distraction.

00:07:34   So, slow music.

00:07:35   Thumbs up.

00:07:36   So last week we were both very excited with our new mouse purchases.

00:07:41   Have you been using your MX Master?

00:07:43   How do you feel about it?

00:07:45   It's great.

00:07:46   I've been doing a little bit of audio editing with it.

00:07:48   This morning I was actually doing just a little bit of, not exactly animation work, but kind

00:07:53   of pre-animation work with it.

00:07:55   And I'm going to say it is the best mouse that I have ever used.

00:08:00   It's really nice.

00:08:02   There's a couple of times when in specific programs I like the ability to switch around

00:08:06   what the various buttons do, especially a couple of those thumb buttons on the side

00:08:10   to change what they do depending on the program.

00:08:13   So I've got to say, if I'm recommending a mouse, this is definitely going to be the

00:08:17   mouse that I would recommend. I would just say with all mice I'm always aware that they

00:08:22   are the fastest to irritate some of my RSI issues. So in my constant rotation of input

00:08:29   devices the mouse always gets the smallest segment of the full pie chart there, but the

00:08:35   MX Master is definitely going to be my go-to mouse in the future.

00:08:39   Why do you continue to use a mouse then?

00:08:42   I use the mouse because I find it useful to rotate the input devices.

00:08:47   Because even with my pen, which is the one that bothers my RSI the least,

00:08:52   if I've spent a whole day using the pen it can feel like it's sometimes good to

00:08:57   switch over to a trackball or to a mouse later on, just to be using a different set of muscles for input.

00:09:02   So that's why I do like to rotate things back and forth.

00:09:07   Does that make sense?

00:09:08   Yeah, it does make a lot of sense actually.

00:09:10   I continue to have a fantastic and torrid love affair with my MX Master.

00:09:14   Have you married your MX Master yet?

00:09:16   That's the impression that I've gotten.

00:09:18   It keeps burning my advances but eventually I will wind it down.

00:09:22   I love this thing.

00:09:23   I have only one complaint and I don't know if it's just for me.

00:09:29   There's like a part where your thumb goes down, like your thumb goes down, there's like

00:09:33   a button there.

00:09:34   with the way that you grip it. There's a very slightly sharp piece of rubber that is on the

00:09:39   kind of the corner and it kind of digs into the... I can't think of what the word would be... webbing?

00:09:45   I don't know, between my thumb and my hand? But that's it. But I can kind of soften that down a

00:09:50   little bit and it's fine. I don't even... something's wrong with your hand or your mouse. I don't even

00:09:55   know what you're talking about. I'm looking at it on mine. So you see where the buttons are?

00:10:00   Yeah, I see where the buttons are.

00:10:01   Where the plastic connects with the rubber.

00:10:03   Yeah.

00:10:04   That mine is just ever so slightly raised.

00:10:08   But it's not a massive problem and that is the only problem I have.

00:10:11   So in summary, I love this mouse.

00:10:13   Oh that?

00:10:14   I think you have very sensitive hand webbing.

00:10:16   I have very sensitive hands, yes.

00:10:19   My hand webbing is very sensitive.

00:10:21   I'm known for that in and around these parts.

00:10:23   There we go.

00:10:24   The battery is excellent on this mouse too.

00:10:25   And I like that all you need to do to recharge it is just plug it in and keep using it.

00:10:29   on the reddit was complaining that they hate wireless mice and someone was pointing out

00:10:34   that well it has a USB cable to charge it so you could just leave it plugged in all

00:10:38   the time and constantly charging and now you have a wired mouse and they seem to think

00:10:41   that was an acceptable solution.

00:10:43   I saw that too and also thought it was kind of a little bit beautifully crazy because

00:10:47   it doesn't I don't know why that solves it for you like I don't know what your problem

00:10:51   with wireless mouse is so much that if you just plug it in like would it be better if

00:10:57   just got a mouse with batteries and tied a piece of string between your mouse and your

00:11:00   computer, would that also suffice? I don't know.

00:11:02   Yeah, you need a lanyard so that it never falls away when you're using the mousepad.

00:11:07   Maybe they do like, I don't know, they have a really bad desk and their mouse just slides

00:11:12   away otherwise or something. I don't know what the problem is.

00:11:15   But yeah, so even for people who are desirous of a wired mouse, this wireless mouse is a

00:11:19   perfect solution. So I think we both have to thank MKBHD for his recommendation because

00:11:25   is working out pretty well for us.

00:11:27   Do you remember, I'm sure that you do, a few weeks ago, we were talking about your issue

00:11:32   with the Apple Watch in that it doesn't track your sleep or give you the silent alarm?

00:11:38   Uh, yes.

00:11:39   Is your solution of charging when you take a shower still suffice?

00:11:43   Does the battery still work for you?

00:11:44   Yep, since whenever we record that episode, that's what I've been doing all the time,

00:11:48   is I charge it very briefly in the morning when I'm getting ready, and I can charge it

00:11:53   at night if I'm taking a shower before going to bed. And just, you know, two little sessions

00:11:57   of twenty minutes here and there works perfectly fine for me. So I'm pretty happy with it.

00:12:03   So I do actually sleep with the watch every night and I do use it as a silent alarm in

00:12:08   the morning.

00:12:09   Okay, so someone on the Reddit suggested this and I can't find their name now, but they

00:12:13   bought one of these kind of fitness tracking bands by, I think they're a Chinese company,

00:12:20   Xiaomi?

00:12:21   Xiaomi? Is that how you say it? Zhaomi?

00:12:23   Someone once told me, because I kept saying it wrong, and they said it's kind of like saying "shower me"

00:12:28   So that's how I remember it.

00:12:30   "Shower me." They make something called the "Me Band" which is about $20 shipped.

00:12:36   They basically make decent technology for incredibly cheap prices. This is the company that

00:12:42   just blatantly copies Apple, like even down to their packaging and their websites and stuff.

00:12:50   That's why the name sounds vaguely familiar.

00:12:52   - Yeah, that's probably how you know it.

00:12:53   Also one of Google's executives, Hugo Barra,

00:12:58   went to work there and became their chief of design.

00:13:01   But what this guy has done is they use it

00:13:04   for sleep tracking and they also use it

00:13:07   for the silent alarm thing.

00:13:09   And the battery lasts 40 days on charge.

00:13:13   It's crazy, I know a couple of people actually

00:13:15   that use this, so this is an option for you.

00:13:17   cheap little sleep tracker that you can wear and then you know you can still do

00:13:22   your Apple charger thing maybe you could have both you can be like double alarm

00:13:25   guy but there's a little solution for you.

00:13:27   No that's a redundancy too far.

00:13:29   That's a redundancy too far.

00:13:31   40 days and 40 nights is an impressive battery life but I think I'm

00:13:37   happy enough with what the Apple watch does because the silent alarm was really

00:13:42   80% of the thing that I missed. The sleep tracking would be nice but I have a

00:13:47   a requirement now for anything health-related is that if it doesn't talk to Healthbook,

00:13:52   I am not interested because I don't want to have a whole bunch of little walled gardens

00:13:57   each with different pieces of my health data all over the place. So I think I'm probably

00:14:02   just going to stick with my Apple Watch method for the time being, but this looks like a

00:14:06   viable alternative for anybody who is just looking for a silent alarm in the morning

00:14:10   and doesn't want to drop a bunch of money on an Apple Watch.

00:14:12   I actually think that 40 days of charging is not useful because like my pebble when

00:14:17   I used to wear a pebble that would last for about 7 days and the battery always died on

00:14:22   me because I wasn't used to charging it.

00:14:24   Yeah, I used to have this similar kind of problem with the Kindles.

00:14:27   Exactly.

00:14:28   Yeah.

00:14:29   You're much more likely to actually be in a moment when you run out of the battery because

00:14:33   you don't think about the battery.

00:14:35   But 7 days seems like an awkward amount of time whereas 40 days that's long enough that

00:14:40   you know what, if once every 40 days I run out of battery, that might be an acceptable time period.

00:14:45   Whereas once a week is just enough to be consistently annoying without being frequent enough that you're always going to remember.

00:14:51   Yeah, because I guess when it's like, oh, you've got 10% battery life remaining, you've still got four days to find a charger.

00:14:58   Exactly.

00:15:00   You're probably OK.

00:15:00   Exactly.

00:15:03   Gray, I have a game suggestion for you.

00:15:05   Oh, yeah?

00:15:06   I saw this a couple of days ago. I haven't actually played this game yet.

00:15:10   but I played a demo of it at a games expo that I went to a year ago.

00:15:15   It's called Big Pharma.

00:15:16   Oh, this has been on my list, but my understanding is that this is not a Mac

00:15:21   game.

00:15:22   I think it's on the, it's on Steam. Steam have it with the Apple logo. So.

00:15:27   Oh, if they do, that's new because last time I looked into this,

00:15:29   it was not available on Apple and I haven't figured out how to do the whole dual

00:15:36   boot to Windows 10 thing yet on my Mac, which is probably something I shouldn't figure out

00:15:41   how to do because I would only use that for playing games, and that's the last thing I

00:15:44   need is to expand the possibilities of more games for me to play.

00:15:48   But if Big Pharma is available on Mac, I will definitely check it out.

00:15:52   I don't know if I have publicly apologized for this, but I did malign Factorio a long

00:15:57   time ago for being a fugly game that I would never play that I did eventually crack and

00:16:03   play and enjoyed quite a lot, but a lot of people were suggesting Big Pharma as the pretty

00:16:08   version of Factorio. It's like there's a whole new genre of video games now, which are assembly

00:16:15   line video games. It's like you are Henry Ford and you have to design various assembly

00:16:20   lines to do things efficiently. And so yes, Big Pharma looks like it's the pretty version

00:16:24   of this. I am hopefully coming out with a video very soon, so I do need something to

00:16:31   play around with after the video is up. So maybe this will be the next one on my list.

00:16:36   Yeah, I like the look of this game a lot. It's got a real bright color and a great look.

00:16:41   And basically you play a pharmaceutical company and you have to come up with drugs to cure

00:16:48   diseases. But I'm sure that there is, you know, you end up doing all the terrible things

00:16:52   that you end up doing, right? The decisions that you make in these kind of games. And

00:16:58   if you think about the actual ramifications of them.

00:17:00   And it ends up being kind of weird.

00:17:02   I saw the developer was, I think he tweeted,

00:17:04   I saw him tweet or something, or I read something recently

00:17:07   where it was like the comments that they get

00:17:08   and the feedback that they get is really weird.

00:17:10   'Cause it's like, I've cured AIDS, I've cured cancer,

00:17:12   and now there's nothing to do.

00:17:14   Like, it's like, when you think about that,

00:17:18   it's kind of weird.

00:17:19   - Games can definitely make you think about things

00:17:21   in a very, in a very strange way.

00:17:24   Yes, that's it, oh, I'm bored.

00:17:26   I've solved all of these diseases.

00:17:27   I need you, game developer, to come up with new diseases for me to solve in your game

00:17:31   because otherwise I'm really bored.

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00:19:57   So you have a podcast suggestion. We're all about media suggestions today now.

00:20:02   Well it's not exactly a podcast suggestion but I suggested something for you to listen

00:20:08   to which was this episode of Planet Money number 647. They have rather a lot of episodes

00:20:16   which is called "Hard Work is Irrelevant."

00:20:19   I just thought it might be a little bit of a thing to talk about on the show because

00:20:23   it happened to catch my attention for a couple of reasons.

00:20:26   But did you get a chance to listen to the thing before we recorded?

00:20:29   Yeah, I did.

00:20:30   And I would actually say that people should just pause this podcast and go listen to it.

00:20:34   It's like 20 minutes.

00:20:36   So it's not difficult.

00:20:37   Yeah, it's very fast, especially if you're using smart speed on overcast.

00:20:42   It's 15 minutes to listen to.

00:20:44   So we'll put a link in the show notes, people should go and grab it.

00:20:47   Yeah I did listen to it, it was good because I didn't read what it was about, right?

00:20:51   I just pressed play.

00:20:52   So it was interesting that it was a story about Netflix.

00:20:55   Did you have any initial impressions from listening to this episode?

00:20:58   I'm just curious to see what you thought about it before I go through my notes here.

00:21:03   Not to put you on the spot or anything.

00:21:05   It reminded me a lot of what it was like to work in a big corporation, even though I didn't

00:21:09   work in a corporation that works the way that that does, but just like the way that everybody

00:21:13   the language people were using and the idea of the company being a thing was quite interesting.

00:21:23   Yeah, that was my impression as well that I think the headline is a little bit actually

00:21:29   irrelevant to what the show was really about, but it just struck me as an interesting episode

00:21:37   that I would say laid bare a lot of the internal thinking and operation of a company

00:21:45   and specifically how it relates to you, their employee.

00:21:50   TL;DR, they don't really care about you unless you are valuable to them at this very moment.

00:21:59   Is there something that you can do for Netflix, the organization, right now?

00:22:05   If the answer to that is yes, they will keep you on, and if the answer to that is no, they will get rid of you immediately

00:22:11   Even if you are a highly skilled individual

00:22:15   Like at one point they were talking about how they got rid of a huge portion of their engineering team

00:22:21   That their policy with HR was more or less

00:22:27   It's not our job to try to find stuff for you to do

00:22:31   as soon as the thing that we have hired you to do is over, we're just getting rid of you

00:22:35   and we may make new jobs available at Netflix that people can apply to

00:22:39   but there is no internal movement really within the company

00:22:43   it's just you're brought on, you do a thing, and when that thing is no longer relevant

00:22:46   you are out the door

00:22:48   and I just thought

00:22:50   there is this notion that a lot of people have about

00:22:54   how companies work and I think particularly if you are

00:22:58   listening and say you are in college or you are about to enter the working world

00:23:03   this might be a rather enlightening episode to listen to, to just to be aware

00:23:08   of how corporate structures think of you

00:23:11   It reminded me a lot of a realization that I came to

00:23:15   quite early on in working for a big company when

00:23:19   I worked in a small team, maybe about six or seven people

00:23:22   and one of those people were gonna leave, they were gonna go to a different part of the

00:23:26   organization

00:23:27   and I thought that everything was gonna end

00:23:30   and we were all gonna be in dire straits

00:23:32   because we were a team and we were a unit.

00:23:35   But you quickly come to find out that nobody is important

00:23:40   and things just continue to move.

00:23:42   Like there ends up being like there's certain things

00:23:44   that Bob knew how to do and Bob knew how to do them best.

00:23:48   But if Bob goes, you either change the way that you do things

00:23:52   or you try and figure out what Bob did.

00:23:55   And everything just continues.

00:23:56   like nobody is as important,

00:23:59   I mean we talk about this quite a lot actually,

00:24:01   nobody is as important as they think they are,

00:24:03   and myself included.

00:24:04   When I left the bank,

00:24:06   I was expecting to be getting phone calls every week

00:24:08   because people didn't know what to do.

00:24:10   And I got like two of those in like the first week,

00:24:14   and then I never heard from anybody ever again.

00:24:16   'Cause they just carried on, right?

00:24:18   Everyone forgot that I was ever there,

00:24:19   and they just carried on.

00:24:20   But the weird thing is,

00:24:22   Netflix seems to communicate this to their employees,

00:24:26   which is strange because that's not what usually happens.

00:24:29   But they kind of say like, you are not important.

00:24:32   And this is one story in the podcast that I found kind of

00:24:36   a little uncomfortable, I think,

00:24:38   where there's this one lady who was like

00:24:40   an absolute star employee, right?

00:24:43   She worked herself to the point where she was ill.

00:24:47   Her doctor said that she needed to have time off.

00:24:50   She spoke to the boss, Patty,

00:24:51   who's like the focus of the episode.

00:24:54   And she was like, yeah, take whatever time you need.

00:24:56   and then it went on and on from weeks to months

00:24:58   and she would like communicate,

00:24:59   and then like the lady would contact Panti

00:25:01   and say that she still needed more time.

00:25:03   It's like, okay, yep, no problem.

00:25:05   And it sounded like a story of, oh, we care about you.

00:25:08   But then eventually, the lady who's talking

00:25:12   who was on disability leave,

00:25:15   realized that Netflix had moved on without her

00:25:17   and she didn't have a job anymore.

00:25:19   - Yeah, that was particularly a moment

00:25:22   where you think the story is going one way,

00:25:24   it goes entirely the other way. And yes, it's Netflix is saying, "Oh, don't worry, you can

00:25:29   take as much time off as you want, but we are just going to design the whole company so that

00:25:34   it doesn't need you while you're gone." It's like, thanks? Thanks for all this time off, I guess?

00:25:44   Right? But it just feels--but that to me feels like, but if I was there more, maybe this wouldn't

00:25:50   have happened so I'm not sure that your vacation time was really a favor that

00:25:55   you have done me. The episode I just thought yeah it's you know

00:26:00   companies are like this but it almost struck me as a certain kind of I don't

00:26:09   know I almost want to say unawareness on behalf of how open they were about this

00:26:14   like do you think this doesn't necessarily demotivate your employees?

00:26:17   Yeah, I think it's not a good thing. This was pitched as being a good thing.

00:26:21   Yeah. But I don't think it's a good thing. Yeah, and there were a couple of things

00:26:25   that I just took a little note of, which, again, Patty

00:26:29   is the woman who was at HR for the beginning part of Netflix here, who's

00:26:33   the main focus of the story, but she talks about how at one

00:26:37   point they decided to fire one out of every three employees

00:26:41   and really cut the company down. And of course, businesses have to make that decision.

00:26:45   You know, we all understand this if the company goes bankrupt then everybody loses their job

00:26:50   So sometimes you have to get rid of a whole bunch of people

00:26:52   but this was immediately followed by her saying

00:26:56   After that, it was so fun to go to work because everybody who was left was working really hard

00:27:02   like I think of was

00:27:04   Did you do you not think that maybe the people who are left are all terrified?

00:27:09   that they're going to lose their jobs and of course they're all putting in

00:27:14   lots of overtime and doing everything they can for Netflix because they just

00:27:18   saw a third of the staff get fired but it was a bit of this unawareness where

00:27:23   she and and the the CEO of Netflix are like boy what a great company we work at

00:27:27   everybody works out so hard that firing went great it's just like oh God she

00:27:32   goes one two three one two three it's like oh my lord so yeah like she was

00:27:38   doing duck duck goose with the employees and everybody who was goose got to go

00:27:42   home forever. See the thing is like my feeling about it the way that it ends

00:27:50   that doesn't make sense to me the whole story because she talks about firing as

00:27:55   this thing and everyone understands it but then she got fired right and seems

00:27:59   to be really affected by it. Yeah this was the part that was beautiful and I

00:28:02   had to write down one line because the interviewers they asked her and they say

00:28:06   you know, what was it like to fire all of these people? And she says that she

00:28:11   became "the queen of good goodbyes" that she was just really good at

00:28:18   firing people and turning these into positive conversations about how you're

00:28:23   going to go on with your career and nobody should think of their career as

00:28:28   a permanent thing. You know, like that last part is definitely true. You

00:28:33   shouldn't think of going to work for a company as happening forever, but that's

00:28:38   that's not necessarily what you want to hear when you're being fired at that

00:28:41   moment. You know, there's a... it just didn't sound like she was handling this

00:28:45   quite right, but so while she described herself as "the queen of good goodbyes"

00:28:49   yes, as Netflix has pivoted to doing more and more original content production,

00:28:57   they mentioned that her key skill, which seemed to be hiring technical employees

00:29:02   and lower level employees was no longer necessary because they transitioned into a Hollywood company

00:29:08   and she did not have any connections in Hollywood and so the CEO fired her and then they say in this

00:29:16   show that she did not want to talk about it because "it was too painful and too sad to talk

00:29:24   about and it was just it was just kind of mind-blowing to hear this.

00:29:30   It felt really kind of misguided. Especially because you realize she's

00:29:35   doing this interview with Planet Money and all I wonder is how can you still

00:29:39   talk about how great it was to fire all of these people when at the same time

00:29:45   you cannot discuss your own firing but you're telling everybody else that oh

00:29:51   this is just great and you've picked up skills at Netflix that you can go use elsewhere.

00:29:56   That's why I think the episode is a very interesting, very eye-opening

00:30:01   episode to listen to about the internals of a corporation laid bare. And laid bare in a way

00:30:09   which I don't think is necessarily so good for the employees. It's very interesting to listen to,

00:30:16   I think. For me, I listen to something like that and I'm reminded why I wanted to be

00:30:20   self-employed. Right, right. Because no one can do that to me.

00:30:25   Yes, this is definitely the case if somebody else has

00:30:29   control over your life. And the reason why I listened to this episode in the

00:30:32   first place was I thought, because the title is called "Hard Work is Irrelevant"

00:30:36   and I thought, oh maybe this will be related to what we were talking about

00:30:39   before about PewDiePie makes millions of dollars

00:30:42   but does he work millions of times harder than anybody else? The answer is

00:30:46   no, he doesn't. And so like hard work is irrelevant in

00:30:49   in that way. That's kind of where I thought the episode was going.

00:30:52   But instead it was

00:30:55   really focusing on this issue of how hard you

00:30:58   work is not relevant to the company.

00:31:01   They just care that you can produce something right now which is

00:31:04   a value for them. Which again, is

00:31:07   fine. Like I understand that's how

00:31:10   companies work, but what I didn't like was this

00:31:13   duplicitous nature of it. Where Netflix did things where they said

00:31:16   "Oh, we want you to produce things that are of value to us, and that's the only thing we care about,

00:31:21   and so we're going to offer unlimited vacation time to everybody, because all we care about is results.

00:31:26   We don't care about your hard work."

00:31:28   But then we fire the person who ends up needing to take a lot of vacation time,

00:31:34   and also I've seen a few studies talking about how companies that do unlimited vacation time

00:31:40   have

00:31:41   employees take far far fewer vacation days than they would otherwise

00:31:46   Because just like this woman who got fired

00:31:49   Everybody knows there's a line somewhere at which the company is going to try to replace you

00:31:55   but you don't know where that line is and so everybody's afraid to actually take their vacation days and

00:32:01   Then on top of that if if your company is saying hard work is irrelevant. We only care about output

00:32:06   My only question is, "Oh, okay, great. How many people get to go home early when they've done the things that are of value to you?"

00:32:14   Because it certainly sounds like nobody.

00:32:17   It sounds like everybody now has the hard work dial turned up and the output dial turned up just to absolute maximum

00:32:27   because they're afraid of getting let go in the DuckDuckGoose game that is played every once in a while.

00:32:33   I do agree with the conceit that like people staying late to try and show how hard they work is not useful.

00:32:42   Yes.

00:32:42   Right, and that's one of the key parts of it. Like trying to display your hard work is not as useful as producing results.

00:32:50   And I feel like that's where that's like the underpinnings of where this came from.

00:32:54   But I feel like the problem is I don't think there is ever a right way to do this stuff.

00:33:00   you're either gonna go one way or the other way and neither of them really seem to work.

00:33:04   I think fundamentally it is basically impossible to run a perfect company when you're dealing with lots of people.

00:33:11   You're gonna go one way or the other way and you just have to choose whatever way you want to go with and whatever one

00:33:16   you're comfortable with and I know that me personally, I'm not comfortable with treating humans in that regard,

00:33:23   like as just units of things.

00:33:26   This is one reason why

00:33:29   I don't really want to be in charge of any employees either.

00:33:34   Like I never want anybody working directly for me.

00:33:39   There may be circumstances where that happens in the future,

00:33:41   but it's something that I go out of my way to avoid

00:33:44   because I don't wanna be put in that position

00:33:46   of having to evaluate other people.

00:33:49   I mean, I get uncomfortable even when I have to do that

00:33:51   sometimes with people who are doing freelance work for me.

00:33:55   And there've definitely been freelance people

00:33:57   that I've tried to work with that I don't contact again

00:33:58   because it hasn't worked out, but that feels very different from someone who's an employee

00:34:04   who you know their entire livelihood is dependent upon you.

00:34:07   Like that's something I would much rather avoid, because ultimately you do have to judge

00:34:13   them on their output, and it's just a very uncomfortable thing to do.

00:34:17   But something about the Netflix openness about this was just, I don't know, it almost struck

00:34:23   me as weirdly sociopathic.

00:34:25   I don't know. I don't know if that's if that's too far, but there was something about the the whole show that I just found

00:34:30   slightly horrifying

00:34:32   But I don't know if you actually did you try to look at those the slides they were talking about?

00:34:36   No, I didn't. Yeah, so I found I found the slideshow that they mentioned that this that Netflix put together

00:34:42   Just like a company would this

00:34:44   156 slide document about their employee. I know I was I thought let me try to look through this

00:34:51   Who on earth can read these things?

00:34:55   I don't understand why businesses feel the need to communicate with each other in

00:35:00   PowerPoint presentations.

00:35:03   So this would be a thousand times easier to read if you wrote it like a big boy in paragraphs on a piece of paper

00:35:11   instead of doing all of this bullet pointed-- I don't know, I just find it absolutely exhausting. Like it just-- my brain slides away when

00:35:19   looking at all this stuff. But it still seems to me, even though it's supposed to be this amazing thing,

00:35:24   is still just a bunch of corporate mumbo jumbo.

00:35:29   Yeah, a bunch of corporate mumbo jumbo

00:35:32   and I'm trying to find the relevant slides.

00:35:34   The only one that I could find is their hard work,

00:35:37   not relevant slide has the bullet points.

00:35:39   We don't measure people by how many hours they work

00:35:41   or how much they're in the office,

00:35:43   which again, totally is possible to agree with.

00:35:45   And they just say that we do care

00:35:47   about accomplishing great work

00:35:49   and that A-level performance, despite minimal effort,

00:35:53   will be rewarded with responsibility and more pay.

00:35:57   That is a radical notion.

00:36:00   Like I think that part is kind of okay to talk about.

00:36:03   Like we will reward you for doing amazing things

00:36:07   even if it wasn't very hard for you

00:36:10   because we don't care how hard it was.

00:36:12   Like that's okay, but I just think there are very,

00:36:15   very limited ways to set up a company

00:36:18   where you don't end up also implicitly seeing people

00:36:23   seeing people push themselves to the very, very limit

00:36:26   because everybody is competing with everybody else on this company floor

00:36:30   and so ultimately, what Netflix really wants is people who are doing A-level effort all the time

00:36:36   like that's really what they want

00:36:37   and they're not really gonna say "oh you're clocking out at 11am but it's okay because you wrote a couple of amazing lines of scripts

00:36:45   of code that are going to save us a whole bunch of money"

00:36:47   like I just don't get the feeling that that's really how it works there

00:36:50   that if you want it to clock out they'd be just fine with it

00:36:52   Yeah, like I say, I fundamentally agree with that principle.

00:36:56   I just think the implementation of that is fraught with problems.

00:37:00   Yeah, anyway depressing topic number two for the day, I guess.

00:37:05   Okay, so let's move on to talking a little bit more. We've got some interesting points

00:37:11   about side projects we were talking about again last week. I feel like it's probably

00:37:14   maybe every episode we will do this, but Spencer wrote in with something. I like this.

00:37:19   It was too long for a tweet so he wrote it out in notes

00:37:22   and sent me a screenshot which I quite like.

00:37:24   But I thought that this was a fantastic insight

00:37:27   into me and you and the way that we differ on motivation.

00:37:30   If you remember you were saying that like,

00:37:32   you work in the mornings 'cause you have to get it done

00:37:34   and I'm like, I will work in the evenings

00:37:36   because it's important to me.

00:37:37   It doesn't matter how tired I am because I love what I do.

00:37:40   So this is what Spencer wrote in and he said,

00:37:42   I think an important point to make

00:37:44   in the motivation discussion is that Gray

00:37:46   was trying to become self-employed,

00:37:48   not trying to become a professional YouTuber.

00:37:50   Myke on the other hand loved podcasting

00:37:51   and did it just for fun.

00:37:53   For him, podcasting is the equivalent

00:37:55   of watching TV and eating ice cream.

00:37:56   Myke can work on that side project when he's worn out

00:37:59   because it's just so enjoyable for him,

00:38:02   whereas Gray wasn't that committed to YouTube specifically

00:38:05   and was using it to achieve self-employment.

00:38:07   I think that's really insightful

00:38:09   in the way that me and you are,

00:38:11   'cause that's true, right?

00:38:12   I did it as my, it was my hobby,

00:38:14   so I would do it when you would be sitting and watching TV

00:38:17   or watching a movie or whatever or playing a game

00:38:19   in your evening to unwind, but that was what I did.

00:38:22   And so it was like, because, you know,

00:38:25   correct Spencer and me if we're wrong,

00:38:27   but it was for you, it wasn't so much like YouTube

00:38:30   is what I've always dreamed of.

00:38:31   It was just like, this is a way I can achieve

00:38:35   the self-employment, which is the dream.

00:38:37   - Yeah, that part of it is definitely true,

00:38:39   that I was not aiming for YouTube.

00:38:42   I didn't even know that YouTube was a way to make a living.

00:38:44   And so the fact that I have ended up

00:38:46   as a professional YouTuber was kind of an accident.

00:38:49   And as may come relevant in later discussions,

00:38:52   it was also not obvious to me that the YouTube thing

00:38:56   was the thing for quite a while.

00:38:57   It took me a while to even figure that out.

00:39:00   So yes, I was working on other projects.

00:39:02   But yeah, I think that is fair to say

00:39:04   that my goal was self-employment

00:39:07   and trying various things to reach that.

00:39:12   And whereas for you, Myke, making podcasts

00:39:15   just like eating ice cream and you can do it all the time without getting too

00:39:20   fat without getting too fat spear edits on reddit wrote in and gray please

00:39:27   pronounce this word for me I can't do it what was because again I'm gonna leave

00:39:34   it to you know you saw cuz cuz cuz except I don't know man I can't do this

00:39:39   Keep going.

00:39:41   [Gibberish]

00:39:42   Anyway, that channel that we were talking about last week is a--

00:39:46   What channel was that, Myke?

00:39:48   [Gibberish]

00:39:49   So, spear edits, he/she says, "It's a great channel, but it's a bad example, in their opinion,

00:39:55   of how many of your points regarding how easy or hard it is to make it on YouTube.

00:40:00   They made it to 875,000 subscribers in two years with a team of people,

00:40:04   very high production value relative to many other channels,

00:40:07   channels and from what they've seen they also spend at least some money on

00:40:11   advertising. So what this person is getting at is that all of the things we

00:40:16   were talking about last week as to how we believe that it is still easy to go

00:40:20   out there and achieve the level of stardom that you want and you brought up

00:40:25   this channel as an example of how it can still be achieved right?

00:40:29   Yeah well before you go on to your points there's this one clarification

00:40:33   that I want to make which I'm not sure made it into the the show last time but

00:40:37   But I bring up Kirkisat because very often I hear a whole separate argument about there's

00:40:42   no room for any more educational YouTubers.

00:40:46   And Kirkisat is my example of someone who has broken into the pre-existing category.

00:40:52   But yes, I completely agree.

00:40:53   Their production values are crazy high compared to, I mean, almost anybody else on YouTube.

00:41:00   They are a team of people and they put together amazing looking videos.

00:41:05   I just want to say that I recognize at the time they're not the best example just in

00:41:09   general possibly on YouTube, but I think they are an example of someone who is breaking

00:41:14   in to a specific market that already exists that they're aiming for.

00:41:21   So I do still disagree though with the idea that they're not a good example of how it

00:41:26   is still possible at least without, you know, it's still possible basically to break in

00:41:31   because all they're doing is showing what you have to do now.

00:41:35   The goalposts move and maybe these are all of the things

00:41:38   that you must do to be successful.

00:41:41   But if you are determined and you can maybe put money

00:41:45   into it, which pretty much you've always had

00:41:47   to put some money into it, right?

00:41:48   'Cause we were talking before, you had to buy tools,

00:41:50   but now tools are free so you spend money in other places.

00:41:53   And if you're determined to it and if that's what it takes,

00:41:56   then that's what it takes.

00:41:57   But I think it still proves that these paths are open

00:42:01   and available to anyone.

00:42:03   - I do just want to do one correction though,

00:42:05   which is that Kirk Asat hasn't spent any money

00:42:07   on advertising, but there's a thing that happens on YouTube

00:42:10   which is a little bit confusing sometimes to viewers.

00:42:14   Okay, so YouTube has this system where you as a channel

00:42:21   can create a quote ad for your channel.

00:42:25   So I have one of these little videos I made

00:42:27   It's a 30 second, this is the CGP Grey channel ad.

00:42:31   And you can put that into the YouTube system

00:42:35   and what I think YouTube does is,

00:42:38   anytime they don't have paid advertisements

00:42:41   for a video that's playing,

00:42:42   they reach into this big bin of YouTube channels

00:42:45   that have created ads and they run those.

00:42:48   But you as a YouTube channel do not pay to have those shown.

00:42:53   - I always wondered about this.

00:42:55   Yeah, they are shown, the impression that I get is that they are shown when YouTube is basically run out of inventory.

00:43:01   But the other thing about these ads is, one, they're available to everybody.

00:43:07   I think once your channel hits some minimum number, like if it's a thousand subscribers or ten thousand subscribers, they allow you to create this little ad.

00:43:15   And the second thing is that it's run through, like, all of the advertisements on YouTube.

00:43:20   it's run through their algorithms about how effective it is at actually getting people to subscribe to your channel

00:43:26   and so if your ad is deemed through A/B testing to be not very effective, like they will just stop running it

00:43:33   but so Kurgesat created one of these ads, but this is really part of a YouTube internal self-promotion mechanism

00:43:41   it's not paying for advertising

00:43:45   So I just want to make people really aware that the barrier is not, "Oh, we have a bunch of money and we're going to spend it to promote ourselves."

00:43:54   The barrier is actually, you have to create an ad that promotes yourself in an effective way when compared to other people's ads.

00:44:04   But you can still do it for free.

00:44:06   So again, the barrier here is create something that is effective, not spend money to get

00:44:14   shown.

00:44:15   That's how this internal market works on YouTube.

00:44:17   Okay, that makes sense.

00:44:19   I think that that Kyrgyz sat brings up an interesting point about branding.

00:44:24   And a couple of people said this on the Reddit and I agree.

00:44:27   And I don't want to try and offend anybody because I don't know, I'm sure that this word

00:44:31   mean something to a section of people in the world, right? And that it's super easy to

00:44:37   spell and they hear it and they can spell it perfectly.

00:44:39   What language do you think it is, Myke? German?

00:44:42   You are correct, it is German. So I expect...

00:44:45   Come on, with that K and the Zs and the Gs and the GT, it's gotta be German.

00:44:50   Yeah. Basically a lot of sounds I can't make. I assume that in Germany this means something

00:44:56   and everybody knows how to spell it and find it.

00:45:00   But it's interesting to me that they put a lot of work

00:45:03   and effort into trying to make something successful.

00:45:06   So I would assume probably wanted it

00:45:08   to be successful worldwide.

00:45:10   And that I think for me makes the branding choice

00:45:14   an interesting one.

00:45:15   Because, and the way I say this,

00:45:17   last week you mentioned this show, right?

00:45:19   When I was listening through to the edit

00:45:20   to try and put the show notes together,

00:45:23   I couldn't find it.

00:45:25   I was googling because I didn't know how to spell anything.

00:45:27   Like I couldn't even really, I was like listening over and over again and couldn't even pick

00:45:31   out the letters that you were trying to pronounce.

00:45:34   Yeah you sent me an iMessage that was something like, what is the corgisn channel?

00:45:40   C-O-U-R-G-I-S-N?

00:45:42   I think I just hit the keyboard and just basically however it came out is the way it came out.

00:45:48   So I think branding is important but you know, I don't really want to say it as a way to

00:45:53   disparage them but I just think it's something worth thinking about that maybe sometimes

00:45:59   it's easier to go with a word in a language that is spoken around the world and I hate

00:46:04   to say English right but it's an easier one to go with or to create a word which many

00:46:09   people do which is easy to spell when you hear it.

00:46:13   It's okay to say English Myke because English is the lingua franca of the internet.

00:46:18   I love that that's French.

00:46:20   I know isn't it?

00:46:22   It's always great. It's always great. I will use it every time I possibly can.

00:46:27   Like, "Suck it, France."

00:46:31   English is the lingua franca.

00:46:35   Oh, dear.

00:46:40   It is absolutely terrible.

00:46:41   I have two comments on that with the branding.

00:46:44   I think of my father has always been an entrepreneurial self-employed thinks-about-businesses kind of guy.

00:46:49   And one of his pet peeves that he would mention to me all the time when I was growing up as a kid

00:46:54   was pointing out businesses with terrible names.

00:46:58   So he would always point out stores that had a name where you couldn't tell from the name

00:47:05   what would be in the store.

00:47:07   And so he was always pointing out stuff like this, of just getting me to think about

00:47:11   if you're ever going to have a business, it needs to telegraph what it is

00:47:17   in the name. So if you're going to have a business that's called

00:47:21   "pedals," it needs to say, you know, "pedals

00:47:25   professional florists," right? Or "pedals spa." But it's ambiguous if

00:47:30   you're just using a name like "pedals." You don't know what it is. Now,

00:47:35   I think that advice is true in the physical world. In the--I know I'm

00:47:42   driving down a street and looking at stores' names, or I'm walking through a

00:47:45   mall and I'm looking at business names.

00:47:47   Yes, in that circumstance I do think that you need to

00:47:50   have something that is crystal clear

00:47:53   about what you will find inside.

00:47:55   But I'm not convinced that that advice matters so much

00:47:58   on the internet when you are doing an

00:48:01   attention-getting business, like making viral

00:48:04   videos for a living, the most attention-getting business

00:48:07   there can possibly be.

00:48:09   Because the vast, vast majority of ways that people

00:48:12   people find you are from sharing links.

00:48:15   And I don't think that they're as much from word of mouth

00:48:19   or even from people searching.

00:48:21   And I actually went to look on my Google Analytics today

00:48:23   to see, oh, how many people find my videos

00:48:27   from searching for something?

00:48:30   And search traffic overall for my videos is under 5%.

00:48:35   So I think it matters less on the internet

00:48:37   if you have a name that's not super easy to understand

00:48:41   if you are in the attention-getting business.

00:48:46   But if you're, say, trying to run a law firm on the internet,

00:48:48   then that's a whole different thing.

00:48:52   Then you need to have it really clear

00:48:54   what your business is.

00:48:55   You need to have some name and then law firm after it.

00:48:57   So it depends.

00:48:59   But all that being said, I have found out today

00:49:01   from insider information that Corcasats

00:49:04   is actually changing their name.

00:49:09   Say they know, right?

00:49:07   They know, because the thing is, I understand what you're saying about links and stuff,

00:49:11   but eventually you want people to remember you and come to you, and they can't do that

00:49:18   if they can't find you.

00:49:21   So like, with Relay FM, we took a little bit of that idea in that the FM is in the name

00:49:27   because it kind of gives a hint as to what you're going to get.

00:49:30   Right, FM has become the unofficial domain of podcasting.

00:49:34   But we actually put the FM in our brand name, right?

00:49:37   Oh, okay, I see what you're saying.

00:49:40   So like, we refer to it as Relay, because it's easier, but the company is called Relay

00:49:43   FM.

00:49:45   And we wanted to choose a word that could be very, very easily spelt, because we deal

00:49:50   in the audio business.

00:49:52   Right.

00:49:53   Right, so people need to hear us and know how to find us.

00:49:57   And that is extremely important, I think.

00:50:00   So I'm not surprised to hear that they're changing their name because it is very difficult

00:50:06   to find them.

00:50:07   I think they're approaching a million subscribers now.

00:50:10   I think they're somewhere between 800,000 and a million subscribers at the time of this

00:50:13   recording.

00:50:15   If you could rewind time and change it to their new name, which is what "Kurkasat" means

00:50:22   in German, which is "in a nutshell."

00:50:24   It's like saying that something is summarized, right?

00:50:27   giving you a summarized version of a topic. If you rewind and make them pick in a nutshell

00:50:34   from the beginning instead of kurkasats, how many more subscribers would they have? And

00:50:42   I bet it would be a less than 5% effect. That's my guess. Like yes, it does matter, but is

00:50:48   it the most important thing? I think not if you are in the viral video business. But if

00:50:54   If you're going to open, say, a pet shop in your local mall, you can't call it Kirk-o-Sats.

00:51:01   That's not going to do you any favours.

00:51:04   But those are just two very, very different scenarios.

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00:53:17   Grey what is an ASMR video?

00:53:19   I'm glad you brought this up because this is the thing that I wished I had thought of when we were recording last time

00:53:26   which I think is actually the better example of

00:53:29   why there is so much more room for success on the internet now

00:53:34   than there ever has been and that as the audience grows there are more ways to be successful.

00:53:41   ASMR videos are...

00:53:45   This is going to be so hard to explain.

00:53:49   Have you seen one of these?

00:53:54   No, I wanted to, I really wanted you to explain it to me.

00:53:59   I wasn't sure if you were laughing because you knew what I was about to try to explain or you were just waiting for it.

00:54:04   No, but like reading in the Reddit people were just talking about tapping fingernails.

00:54:09   Yeah, okay, so how do I put this?

00:54:12   Okay, the thing that I'm trying to figure out how to get around here is that if you

00:54:15   just see an ASMR video, it will strike almost everybody as just really creepy, or you watching

00:54:25   them you'll have the feeling almost of, "Is this something indecent to some people?

00:54:30   Like what's going on on the screen here?

00:54:32   I'm having a hard time understanding."

00:54:34   And so if you watch an ASMR video, what you will see on the screen is someone usually

00:54:43   talking in a low voice, very often they're whispering, into a microphone, and they will

00:54:50   be doing something else while they are talking.

00:54:54   They'll be cutting their hair, or they'll be moving a paintbrush across a piece of paper,

00:55:02   or they'll be putting a bunch of marbles from one jar into another jar.

00:55:07   You kind of think like, "Am I watching a video of someone's kind of fetish or something?

00:55:12   What is happening here?"

00:55:13   Yeah, that's what it feels like.

00:55:15   Is there somebody out there who has a marbles moving from one jar to another jar fetish?

00:55:21   Right?

00:55:22   But like, there's nothing indecent on the screen, but there's just something about it

00:55:26   that feels really weird.

00:55:29   "Maybe I should back out of this room really slowly and leave these people to whatever they're doing."

00:55:34   Some of these videos have, you know, in the many multiple hundreds of thousands of views.

00:55:39   And so you're thinking like, "Okay, right, I'm not a crazy person. We don't live in a society where lots and lots of people

00:55:44   have some kind of fetish for paintbrushes moving across paper while someone's talking.

00:55:50   Like, this is not the world we live in. Like, what's really happening here?"

00:55:53   So the purpose of these videos is to invoke a response in somebody's brain based on a

00:56:02   sound.

00:56:04   And so ASMR is this, it's a made up acronym, it stands for something, I forget exactly

00:56:09   what it is.

00:56:11   But it's a series of letters that's used to describe a physical sensation that some people

00:56:16   have in their brain when they hear particular sounds.

00:56:21   Autonomous sensory meridian response.

00:56:24   - There you go, autonomous sensory meridian response.

00:56:27   - Which doesn't mean anything.

00:56:29   - Yeah, my understanding is,

00:56:30   my understanding is, yeah, that whole thing is just made up.

00:56:32   It's just a made up thing to try to describe

00:56:34   this strain sensation.

00:56:36   - Yeah, they could have made up something

00:56:37   a lot better than that.

00:56:38   - Yeah, but this makes it sound vaguely medical, I guess.

00:56:41   - Yeah, okay.

00:56:42   Meridian response, like what are you doing?

00:56:44   Okay.

00:56:45   - Yeah, who knows, who knows?

00:56:48   But so I first found these things years ago on some Reddit thread where people were saying like

00:56:53   What are some of the weirdest things that exist on YouTube like Oh click like let me see what's what's on YouTube

00:56:57   It's like oh god. There's a lot of just weird stuff

00:56:59   Yeah, but this is the this is the intersection of like weird but also very popular

00:57:08   So I was I was watching these videos and like this is just crazy town. I don't understand any of this. This is just bizarre

00:57:16   However, as I kept watching the videos, what everybody says will happen is that if you find the right one,

00:57:23   you will have this weird feeling in your brain. And eventually, through enough clicking around, I came across one where I was like,

00:57:31   "Whoa, what is this?" And I don't know how to describe it,

00:57:34   but I would just say it almost feels like someone stuck like a 9-volt battery in the center of your brain and has

00:57:40   activated some little part of your brain that you didn't know was there before.

00:57:44   Oh, this is weird man. What are you gonna? What have you done to me the next four hours?

00:57:48   Listening to people move marbles around with paintbrushes

00:57:51   Now the thing is I feel relatively lucky because I would say that

00:57:59   It was a kind of sensation. I had never felt before

00:58:03   It wasn't super pleasant. It wasn't super unpleasant. It was just different. It was it was a bit like, oh, okay

00:58:10   This is an experience. I haven't had before

00:58:12   But some people are like ASMR junkies and just and describe the sensation as being very very nice

00:58:19   And so they just watch these things over and over again. And so like they're trying to fly. It sounds like a high

00:58:23   Yeah, it makes me think of like wire heads in the RimWorld series, right?

00:58:27   Where you're plugging a like a wire into your brain, you know to make you happy and you're pressing the happy button all day

00:58:33   But so yeah, so this is a whole genre of videos and

00:58:39   Apparently not everybody will have this ASMR response.

00:58:42   You know, there seems to be some doubt about how legitimate it is. All I can say is that from my own personal experience

00:58:48   I eventually found a couple of videos that did seem to trigger this.

00:58:51   The ones that worked for me used 3D audio where they're using audio that feels like it's going around your head.

00:58:57   Anyway, my big point about this is these are an example of a kind of thing where there are people who do

00:59:05   ASMR videos and make a decent side income from them.

00:59:09   And this could never ever have existed before in the main world because you just can't

00:59:17   aggregate people together like this without the internet and

00:59:21   If you don't have people communicating

00:59:25   You're never going to find find this out that this is a thing that exists in the population, but exists perhaps in a very very

00:59:32   distributed way

00:59:34   And so ASMR videos to me are a perfect example of the more people you gather in a single place,

00:59:41   the more opportunities there are to do all kinds of things that you as a single individual may never have heard about,

00:59:49   but that there is enough interest in the entire crowd.

00:59:54   And so if you're looking at the modern world with billions of people on the Internet,

01:00:00   There are enough people on the internet now that you can get hundreds of thousands of people who are dedicated ASMR video watchers.

01:00:09   Are you clicking around on your computer now, Myke?

01:00:12   I did a moment ago and I realized that I need to be able to listen to this.

01:00:17   Just looking at someone is kind of weird.

01:00:19   And I'm kind of a bit scared, so I don't know if I'm going to watch any of these because I'm worried that it will be the end of everything.

01:00:28   Well, this is a good example of where,

01:00:30   what I was trying to say last time about how,

01:00:32   when people talk about production values,

01:00:34   what really matters is the production of what?

01:00:36   Like what is the thing that people want?

01:00:38   And if you're watching ASMR videos for the video,

01:00:42   you're not getting it, Myke.

01:00:43   Like the videos are often terrible, terrible quality.

01:00:47   - So they should be podcasts, really, I suppose.

01:00:50   - Actually, you know, it never occurred to me.

01:00:51   I wonder, I bet there are.

01:00:53   - There's gotta be, right?

01:00:54   It would make a lot of sense, I think.

01:00:55   - Here's the thing.

01:00:56   there aren't already ASMR podcasts, I now know what Relay should do for their next podcast.

01:01:03   I reckon that if we're looking at just voices and soft speaking, you'd probably be a good

01:01:08   candidate for something like that, right? You have that voice, Gray.

01:01:11   Well, this is one of these things where it seems like you just need to find the right thing that

01:01:16   triggers people. And from trying to dig around in this a little bit, it seems like this stuff grew

01:01:23   out of the old uh oh i forgot his name what's the what's the painter guy the happy little trees

01:01:28   painter guy you have no idea who i'm talking about i have no idea who you're talking about you are

01:01:34   so young mike bob ross that's an american thing we didn't have bob ross everybody knows bob ross

01:01:41   his show seemed suspiciously popular for a guy who would just talk softly and paint on on screen but

01:01:48   that a lot of people talk about how like bob ross was absolutely hypnotizing to them because the

01:01:53   the camera would pick up the paintbrush sounds and he would always talk really softly about

01:01:57   happy little trees.

01:01:58   And so Bob Ross might have been the first guy who was collecting ASMR junkies who just

01:02:02   didn't know that there was a whole community of them because there was no internet for

01:02:06   them to start talking about.

01:02:07   Like, does anybody else feel like someone stuck a battery in their head when Bob Ross

01:02:11   talks and he paints on the paper?

01:02:12   It's like, yeah, me too, me too.

01:02:13   Like you need the internet for that.

01:02:15   This is why the internet's great.

01:02:16   Oh yeah, there was something that Brady linked to recently on Twitter, right?

01:02:22   And I didn't even know that this was the thing that was real, which is...

01:02:27   And I'll find it, I'll put it in the show notes so you can go and look at it.

01:02:31   But the ability for people to be able to vibrate their own eardrums...

01:02:35   I can do this!

01:02:36   Okay.

01:02:37   Right, so I can make a sound in my eardrums.

01:02:41   I'm able to vibrate the sound inside.

01:02:45   And I always thought it was something everyone could do,

01:02:48   but it turns out that is not the case.

01:02:50   And it is basically impossible to describe to someone,

01:02:54   but there was this Reddit thread talking about it,

01:02:56   and I totally got what they were talking about.

01:02:59   - Hmm, I'll have to check that out.

01:03:00   This is the thing that I'm not aware of.

01:03:02   - Yeah, so I'll find this,

01:03:04   and I'll put it in the show notes, but I can do it.

01:03:07   I can make my eardrums vibrate,

01:03:09   and it sounds like a rumbling sound, like a drum roll.

01:03:11   - Hmm, weird. - So there you go.

01:03:13   Weird, Myke. Your ears are broken.

01:03:15   But that's what the Internet does. It connects you with the other really weird people in the world.

01:03:19   Yeah. So the ASMR videos are one example of

01:03:23   you can still make it on the Internet, but in a very niche way.

01:03:28   But I want to give a different example which I happen to find in the Reddit.

01:03:33   Someone links to a video which mentions ASMR videos

01:03:38   but talks about other things too. And it's a YouTube video called "4 Huge YouTube Channels Anyone Could Have Made"

01:03:46   I don't know. Did you happen to see this? No. Okay, good. It doesn't matter if you did

01:03:51   I'm not really interested in the videos that he was talking about in this video

01:03:55   But the guy who made this to me is actually a great example of someone who has started a YouTube channel relatively recently

01:04:01   he's called Grade A Under A is the name of the channel and

01:04:08   He started his channel just about two years ago and has terrible, terrible production values.

01:04:16   But nonetheless I ended up watching every one of his videos because I thought they were pretty funny videos.

01:04:21   And he's just complaining about stuff, you know, it's why I hate online shopping.

01:04:25   He's talking about why he hates the Kardashians, why he hates people who show up at his door.

01:04:30   But the videos are terrible production quality.

01:04:33   quality. Like he's using probably a like a Logitech headset

01:04:37   and they're animated but like animated in gigantic quotation marks like they're

01:04:42   barely animated they're just the most basic of drawings

01:04:45   but at this stage he has gathered about 90 000 subscribers and 5 million views

01:04:52   and this to me i don't know anything about this person i don't know who's

01:04:55   behind this but this to me looks like someone who is

01:04:58   like right on the edge of being able to do this professionally

01:05:02   And I think is another good example of the production values don't really matter as much as people think they do.

01:05:09   Here's someone who is relatively new and is climbing the ranks because they make stuff that is enjoyable to watch even if the production quality is not super high.

01:05:20   So grade A under A making some random funny videos on the internet.

01:05:24   You can still make it people. Start your channel today.

01:05:26   [Music]

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01:07:43   week there was something that I mentioned that I wanted to bring up with

01:07:46   you which is about the UK video. So it was your first video and it was an

01:07:52   immediate success I assume. So I want to understand a little bit about how this

01:07:57   happened because I think it's interesting to see this because you went

01:08:01   from nowhere to having a successful video and then having a YouTube channel

01:08:05   which brought a career around it. And it's also interesting because you know

01:08:09   the production values aren't as good in that video as they are later but it's

01:08:12   still managed to be successful.

01:08:15   Like, you know, we've even spoke,

01:08:16   I think we spoke about this before,

01:08:18   even like a lot of the personality that you have

01:08:20   is not in this video, right?

01:08:22   Something that developed over time.

01:08:23   So you're successful now,

01:08:25   but it seemed to be successful then.

01:08:26   So how did it, how did this happen?

01:08:30   Like when you were creating the video initially,

01:08:33   did you expect it to be successful?

01:08:36   Why did you do it?

01:08:40   Yeah, so the story around this.

01:08:43   Now, so I want to preface this with,

01:08:48   there's a cracked podcast that they did a while back,

01:08:51   which I think was a really good one,

01:08:52   which was something about,

01:08:53   it's called something like Origin Stories,

01:08:58   and it talks about how with people in the public eye

01:09:03   who have become successful in any way,

01:09:06   We as a society tend to like to tell the same kind of story over and over again about how they became successful.

01:09:17   And they go through a bunch of examples of, "Here's the story that you think about how Prince the singer became successful."

01:09:25   And then like, "Here's his actual life."

01:09:27   Or, "Here's how Michael Jordan became successful, and here's his actual life."

01:09:30   And the one example that they use is that Michael Jordan likes to tell some story about how

01:09:36   he was cut from the varsity high school basketball team.

01:09:40   And like, oh, it gives the impression like, oh, he overcame this tremendous struggle.

01:09:45   And that that's not even remotely true.

01:09:47   And a similar thing with Prince, that the notion that people have of Prince's career

01:09:51   is that he was an ignored talent, but that's not actually the truth if you go dig around.

01:09:57   I feel there's a certain kind of origin story for some YouTube channels

01:10:02   where they want to talk about how, "Oh,

01:10:06   I just made a video for fun and it became hugely successful and I didn't

01:10:10   have any expectations and I just put it up on the internet just for my friends

01:10:13   to watch and it became

01:10:14   hugely popular." Now, doubtless that has happened sometimes,

01:10:19   but I think that's a kind of story that's very easy to

01:10:24   fall into telling. And my own origin story is not like that at all,

01:10:32   but there's a way in which you can feel like, "Oh, people want to hear that you just

01:10:35   put a thing up

01:10:36   and it became popular and you didn't have any expectations of that." But my

01:10:42   story of that is a little bit harder to hear because

01:10:45   it was fairly calculated. I put that video up

01:10:49   with the expectation that it was going to go

01:10:52   Viral and I would have been surprised if it didn't this is what I want to hear as I assume

01:10:58   Actually people really want to hear this because if you if this is the type of thing you want to do

01:11:03   You need to know that it's possible to plan it right because otherwise

01:11:08   Leaving things to luck and serendipity is not a way to try and start a career, right?

01:11:15   It's not how this stuff works

01:11:17   Yeah, it's a charming story that is very tempting to tell because it's what people want to hear because then they also feel like

01:11:24   oh, I can be just minding my own business and

01:11:27   Become very popular through accident and luck. It's like I don't think that's really that really happens very much

01:11:34   So if you allow me just a very quick digression

01:11:36   So when I started podcasting it really was just a fun little thing that I did with my friend. It didn't expect anything of it

01:11:43   But soon after I started making calculated decisions.

01:11:47   So like I didn't start in the idea of like, "Ah, this is what I'm going to do."

01:11:51   But when I realized it was something that I liked the idea of being able to do this

01:11:55   for a living, right, that this could be my job, I started making

01:11:59   calculated decisions about people to work with and relationships to build.

01:12:03   So like there was calculation in it, but it didn't necessarily start for me that way.

01:12:07   But my start wasn't monumental in any way.

01:12:11   with viral videos and the way that works is that if you pull things off, it can be quite

01:12:16   big, very fast. But yeah, it still can be a calculated thing.

01:12:21   And I'm just suspicious when I hear people say, "Oh, I have this massive business now.

01:12:26   It all just happened just sort of by accident at the beginning." And I think, "Did it really?"

01:12:31   If you're putting something up on the internet, I always want to go back and see, "Did you promote it

01:12:36   you know, right from the start, I'm gonna bet you did, and then that's not very much like

01:12:40   "Oh, it just happened. I just did it for my friends."

01:12:43   But yeah, so anyway, the short version of this is that

01:12:46   at the time, I was trying a few other side projects

01:12:51   to become self-employed, and I was thinking that

01:12:55   well, I needed to attract more attention to the work that I was doing.

01:13:00   So one of the things that I was doing at the time was

01:13:03   I was running a kind of time management consultancy on the side.

01:13:07   So I had some clients and I was doing some advice on time management

01:13:11   and improving their workflows and things like that. And I was aware

01:13:15   like, "Okay, great, I'm making money from here. I don't quite have enough clients to

01:13:19   turn this into a full-time thing with the security that I want.

01:13:23   So what I need are more clients. And one way to get more clients might be to

01:13:27   have more attention in some way. How is this a thing that I can do?"

01:13:31   And the thing that I mentioned in one of my videos did happen, which is I came across one morning this milk container in my local supermarket that had a thing about Jersey cows on it with the UK flag, and I was all confused.

01:13:45   And I did go home and I looked it up and I tried to figure out how was Jersey related to the UK.

01:13:50   And this is exactly the kind of thing that quite naturally my brain just loves.

01:13:55   Ooh, how does this little puzzle fit together? What is the relationship here?

01:13:58   And I was looking through all of this and I thought, oh boy, this is great.

01:14:02   And I was thinking that this could turn into a good presentation, which then at some point

01:14:08   I thought, oh this could turn into a video that I could make, and I bet that this would

01:14:14   be pretty popular on the internet.

01:14:17   And before I actually even made the video, I did look around and see, has anybody on

01:14:23   YouTube made a video talking about the difference between the United Kingdom, Great Britain, and England. And the answer was yes.

01:14:30   There were already videos before I made mine that were on this same topic.

01:14:35   But I looked at them and I thought I could do it better than these.

01:14:41   I don't think any of these are as good as the one that I could make and so I'm going to make this.

01:14:46   And I ended up - to this day

01:14:49   I wish I still had records of exactly how long it took me,

01:14:51   But I can say that I was working on this video over the course of several months like it took a long time to make

01:14:57   Because it's the first one and you have to do everything for the first time and make all the dumb mistakes

01:15:02   You're gonna make for the first time and also do things that you'll never need to do again like set up a YouTube channel

01:15:07   Exactly you're doing all the one-time infrastructure set up stuff

01:15:11   so it just it took forever and

01:15:14   I have many memories of being very cold on a train and working on my laptop on the way into work and trying to put

01:15:20   together a whole bunch of stuff and blah blah blah but it took it took a long

01:15:23   time to make but one of the reasons why I was really invested in making this

01:15:28   video was I was very confident that this was exactly the kind of thing that could

01:15:33   go viral on the internet and my idea was if I make this viral thing it just gets

01:15:40   my name out into the world people know that I exist as a person and this is one

01:15:45   of the reasons why if you look at some of my older videos on my youtube channel

01:15:48   Like I have stuff up about time management because that was one of my side projects there

01:15:52   so I was almost thinking of this UK video as like a loss leader of

01:15:57   I can put a lot of

01:15:59   Work into this if it becomes very popular

01:16:03   Then maybe some of the people who watch this video will find

01:16:07   Some of the other projects that I'm working on and get interested in those because those other projects are my actual money makers

01:16:14   That was the reasoning behind this. It was to get them in the door.

01:16:18   Yeah, exactly right. It was to just

01:16:22   make people aware of "Oh, I'm a person with a YouTube channel

01:16:26   and I have this one UK video that I've made and you can see that and it's

01:16:30   interesting and it gets people in the door." But maybe people would look around and see

01:16:34   "Oh, he's put together some stuff on time management. This guy seems to know what he's talking about.

01:16:38   Let me investigate further." So that's what happened and I put it up online.

01:16:42   The thing that is more like the classic story though is that I had an idea that it could be successful, but I didn't have any frame of reference for what that success would look like.

01:16:55   So I didn't have any expectation in my mind of "Oh, this needs to hit 100,000 views or it'll be a total failure."

01:17:02   That is the part where I had no idea what it looked like because I was just so unfamiliar with the YouTube world.

01:17:09   And I remember just freaking out every time it passed another milestone of "holy crap

01:17:16   I can't believe there's a hundred thousand views. Holy crap

01:17:19   there's two hundred thousand views" and so on right up until a million where I almost fainted. It's just like this is

01:17:24   unbelievable. I would never have guessed a million views, but it's more that I just had no real expectation of what success

01:17:31   would look like. Where did those million people come from? I can attribute this success

01:17:38   largely to

01:17:39   posting the video on

01:17:41   the United Kingdom

01:17:43   section on reddit

01:17:45   So I made a post which had a title something like hey our United Kingdom. I've made a video explaining your country

01:17:52   what do you think and I posted that and

01:17:54   It went right to the top of the United Kingdom section and that is entirely what snowballed everything else

01:18:03   That's quite a cute title

01:18:05   Well, yeah, it's it's a title that is

01:18:07   Telling people that I have made something about them, right? I'm an outsider and I'm trying to explain your thing

01:18:14   How well do you think I did that's why I went with that title

01:18:18   I think it's it's inviting so people click on it and they see if the video is any good and you can see in that

01:18:24   Old thread. I mean, it's still up on reddit of

01:18:26   You know everybody tells me all the dumb things that I did wrong and I'm trying to collect all the corrections

01:18:31   You know right from the start here we go

01:18:33   But nonetheless people did like it and so they shared it and that's how the viral world works is

01:18:38   People see something they like and it just spreads and it's this amazing

01:18:43   Snowball effect as this relates to people who are trying to do stuff like this now. I

01:18:49   think people underestimate how much places like reddit and

01:18:56   link blogs are

01:18:59   Desirous of

01:19:02   good content to link to or post.

01:19:05   Reddit is a machine that needs to eat

01:19:09   delicious, delicious viral videos all day, every day. If you can make something that is good,

01:19:16   there are lots and lots of places out there that are just looking for good stuff to post

01:19:22   every day, and they constantly need new things.

01:19:27   So if you can get the quality of what you're producing above a certain bar

01:19:31   There are lots of people who just want that stuff who need it for their own

01:19:36   Livings to post on their own websites to say oh, I found a funny video today click here to go check it out

01:19:43   like there's a whole world out there that needs content to survive and

01:19:48   so that that's partly how this business works is like I can make videos and and people like them and

01:19:55   And Reddit is a machine that constantly needs new stuff and people go to Reddit to find new stuff

01:20:00   And so new stuff that's good tends to rise to the top and I've been lucky so far that people think on Reddit that my stuff

01:20:06   Is good, but if I make a crappy video like it's gonna get downvoted to hell

01:20:10   Because I'm always competing with everything else like videos always they stand on their own in in these kinds of systems

01:20:18   How quick did it get to a million?

01:20:21   because I seem to got picked up right by

01:20:24   Sites I assume is what it ended up getting it ended up getting posted just about everywhere

01:20:28   Like everywhere that I knew of that I would hope would post it did post it

01:20:33   so I think you know at the time it was on dig sure the who's who's who of

01:20:37   Important websites always rotates over time

01:20:40   But I remember thinking like just about everywhere that I could have hoped would post it did post it

01:20:44   Kind of like what happened to the laws of the Rings videos recently, right?

01:20:47   Yeah, for some reason that one got posted everywhere resonated for some yeah

01:20:52   That was a bit of a surprise to me, but that one, yeah.

01:20:55   I thought, "Oh, this one's just for the nerds."

01:20:57   And that was one of those cases where I vastly got it wrong

01:21:02   about how a video would do.

01:21:04   So let me pull up the analytics here.

01:21:06   I'm gonna guess maybe three months later, four months later,

01:21:10   it was at a million,

01:21:11   but I'm having a hard time guessing from the graph.

01:21:13   I might be off by that.

01:21:15   - Okay.

01:21:16   So this obviously changed your opinion at some point?

01:21:21   Well, this is the thing.

01:21:23   Because I wasn't aiming for YouTube,

01:21:26   I was remarkably thick about this success.

01:21:30   I was so slow on the uptake of maybe this is the thing,

01:21:35   which looking back on my old emails or notes from the time

01:21:38   or projects at the time, it's just,

01:21:40   it's amazing to me now how long it took me to figure out,

01:21:45   dude, like this is the thing.

01:21:47   You've been trying a whole bunch of side projects.

01:21:50   maybe the thing that you're doing that's consistently getting videos in hundreds of thousands of views,

01:21:54   that might be the thing that people want.

01:21:56   But I was, for quite a while still,

01:22:00   making these videos and thinking that I was going to divert this attention into other projects of some kind.

01:22:08   And there's a few cases where,

01:22:10   I think even on the old Daylight Savings Time video, which is way, way after this UK video,

01:22:17   There's some reference to like time management and another video that's still a time management kind of one

01:22:22   I think that's the final time when after that I realized like wait a minute. No YouTube is the thing

01:22:27   But you wouldn't give up. I think it was really just that because

01:22:31   Because I was so unaware of YouTube as a career

01:22:35   It wasn't crossing my mind sure and it was also in no small part that

01:22:41   Even though the view numbers were huge in many ways YouTube didn't see

01:22:45   Seem that different from a lot of the stuff that I had done on the side

01:22:49   Which had generated income like I've generated income from a bunch of projects over the years

01:22:54   but never enough to be full-time and so YouTube seemed like another one of these things because

01:23:01   As you now know since we have cortex on YouTube

01:23:05   The ad rates are not very good. And so even if you do- Insanely bad is the way I would put it. Yeah

01:23:11   I'm absolutely sure that I was earning

01:23:14   Much much more money from my time management clients on the side than I was from the YouTube videos even for quite a while

01:23:20   So on the pie chart of income YouTube still seemed quite small and that in no in no small part

01:23:26   Probably contributed to my slow uptake but it is really funny to me now looking back on it and realizing like you idiot like this

01:23:34   was the thing you know and it took it took me maybe eight months to realize it

01:23:40   but yeah I kept making a few more videos somewhat somewhat just luckily for me a

01:23:47   couple of things happened where I got into an argument with a co-worker about

01:23:51   the royal family and ended up making the royal family video about that which I

01:23:55   think was my next one and then the the real thing that put me over the edge was

01:24:00   was the United Kingdom was having its referendum about changing the voting system back in 2011,

01:24:07   if I remember correctly. And I had out-talked all of my co-workers about that.

01:24:16   I ran out their interest on that topic because I could talk about that forever,

01:24:23   and other people had a limited amount of interest that they could have in that topic.

01:24:28   And I burned through all of the interest available to me

01:24:31   from every human who was alive and felt,

01:24:34   but I still wanna talk about this.

01:24:36   - Have you heard the news?

01:24:37   (laughing)

01:24:38   - That's exactly right.

01:24:40   Have you heard the news about different voting systems?

01:24:43   But yeah, so I made those videos and it was a similar thing.

01:24:46   I was like, I'm really interested in this topic.

01:24:48   I think I can do it really well.

01:24:50   I've made a few other videos

01:24:52   that are generating a lot of attention.

01:24:54   This now fits into like a perfect project to work on

01:24:57   because again, still maybe it'll divert attention to other things.

01:25:01   And so that's why I made those first few videos.

01:25:05   So there were a series of coincidences that had me make more videos than I might have otherwise made

01:25:09   right at the start. But then it seemed like, "Okay, well now I have a thing

01:25:13   that's generating a lot of attention. I've done it four times consistently.

01:25:17   Let me keep cranking this wheel and see what happens."

01:25:21   And a career is what happened.

01:25:23   Let me round out today with a couple of Ask Core Tech questions for you, just a couple of quick ones that I like.

01:25:27   Tyler wants to know, do you use Alfred?

01:25:31   Oh, the Alfred app. Alfred is like an application that you can invoke

01:25:35   on your Mac via a keyboard shortcut which allows you to type into a

01:25:39   text field to launch apps, websites, scripts and all kinds of stuff like that.

01:25:43   Yeah, I think for the past many

01:25:47   years I have done switches

01:25:51   between using Alfred and using Quicksilver.

01:25:55   And I just go through this cycle where

01:25:59   I will use Alfred for many months, and then I'll start to feel

01:26:03   you know, maybe Alfred is just not quite powerful enough for the

01:26:07   things that I want to do. And so then I'll switch over to Quicksilver

01:26:11   and I will use Quicksilver for many months and then I'll feel like, you know what, maybe Quicksilver is just

01:26:15   a little too complicated for what I really need, it's a little too heavy weight.

01:26:19   switch back to Alfred and then the cycle repeats itself. So I definitely

01:26:25   definitely require an app launcher which is better than the built-in spotlight

01:26:30   search because I always open apps and files by doing command space and bringing

01:26:36   up either Alfred or spotlight and typing the first couple of letters of the app

01:26:39   or the file that I want and pressing return. I could not imagine using a

01:26:44   computer in any other way. >> Yeah if something happens

01:26:48   and Alfred isn't open, I just don't know what to do.

01:26:53   >> Yeah, I've got to what? Go to the

01:26:56   applications folder and click on an icon? barbaric.

01:27:00   barbaric. I'm not doing that.

01:27:03   Alfred and/or spotlight or I should say

01:27:07   Alfred and/or quicksilver just dramatically reduce the

01:27:13   I have thought of a thing and it is on the screen time of a computer. It makes it just almost like a reflex to open

01:27:20   Almost any file or almost any application that you use on a regular basis

01:27:24   They are just mandatory as far as I'm considered on a computer. Do you use them? I use Alfred. I love Alfred

01:27:30   I use it just to launch applications mainly, but I pay for their power pack stuff because I

01:27:37   Really like having a clipboard manager just in case I accidentally

01:27:43   Lose something that I've copied

01:27:45   See, I've never gotten into the clipboard manager thing, which I never use it except for like every six months

01:27:51   Except as a security blanket. It's completely copied and pasted something three copy and pastes ago

01:27:57   It's all I use it for but the face because it's there

01:28:00   It's nice because the times where that before I started using it. It's like well, what do you do? You're out of luck

01:28:06   All right, but this is there in case I ever need it

01:28:09   I think it was one day like I bought the power pack because

01:28:12   I made this mistake and I knew it was going to take me a ton of work to fix.

01:28:17   So I was like, I need to stop this from ever happening again.

01:28:20   So you are an Alfred man.

01:28:21   I am an Alfred man. Plus, I mean, you know, it's a little bowler hat in my menu bar.

01:28:25   A little bowler hat is very nice.

01:28:27   How could you not want that? Like this little guy called Alfred. It's fantastic.

01:28:31   It is very nice. I will say if anybody uses Quicksilver, my recommended interface is the Bezel interface.

01:28:39   which dramatically... this is what makes Quicksilver different from Alfred to me, is that

01:28:44   Alfred is almost very word-based, that you type a few letters and it gives you a list of things and it's written out

01:28:51   But if you use Quicksilver and you change it to the bezel, you're really just manipulating gigantic icons on the screen.

01:28:59   It reduces the number of words that you look at when you're searching to something, and I really like that.

01:29:04   So that's my recommendation if you're going to try Quicksilver.

01:29:07   use the bezel as their alternate interface.

01:29:10   And Chris wanted to know, if you had to cut

01:29:13   one iOS device from your life,

01:29:16   and please go with me here, if you had to

01:29:19   do it, which one would it be and why?

01:29:22   Wait, one iOS device? I mean I guess I'd get rid of my oldest iPad

01:29:25   is what I'd do. Then my whole life would still be just fine.

01:29:28   Okay, an entire class, so you've got to get rid of the

01:29:31   iPad or you've got to get rid of the iPhone?

01:29:34   Oh, I have to get rid of...

01:29:35   Wait, but the watch runs iOS, right?

01:29:39   So can we say the watch?

01:29:40   - No, it runs watchOS.

01:29:42   - No, I think it's built on iOS.

01:29:44   I mean, but iOS is also built on OS X, so.

01:29:47   - Oh, don't do that.

01:29:48   I feel like you lead the discussion to the point

01:29:52   where you're able to say that.

01:29:54   - I would never do such a thing.

01:29:55   - No, I don't.

01:29:56   - Why would I ever lead the discussion to OS X?

01:29:59   - I'm gonna bleep that.

01:30:00   - No, don't bleep it.

01:30:01   - I'm bleeping that one. - Don't you dare.

01:30:02   I'm not going to let you bleep it.

01:30:07   I pounced the file.

01:30:10   I'm putting it in.

01:30:11   There's nothing you could do about it.

01:30:13   If you had to get rid of one iOS device class from your life,

01:30:15   which one would it be?

01:30:19   So I have to pick between iPhone and iPad.

01:30:21   That's what's happening here?

01:30:23   Yeah.

01:30:24   Okay, so right now this is actually,

01:30:26   this is a tricky decision because here would be my strategy.

01:30:29   We're recording this just shortly before we're hoping

01:30:30   there are maybe new iPad announcements,

01:30:33   because I'm not a big fan of the iPad Mini.

01:30:36   It's one of my least favorite Apple devices

01:30:38   as it currently stands.

01:30:40   But I'm willing to bet that Apple is going to be coming out

01:30:43   shortly with a thinner, lighter iPad Mini.

01:30:47   And if I had to get rid of one class of iDevice,

01:30:50   what I would do is I would get rid of my iPhone,

01:30:57   drop down to an iPad mini that I could keep

01:31:01   in the cargo pants pocket on my pants.

01:31:06   I would go to a tailor perhaps

01:31:08   and make sure that every pair of pants that I have,

01:31:11   trousers for you, Myke,

01:31:12   has a cargo pocket on the side that could fit the iPad mini.

01:31:16   And that's what I would do if I had to get rid of one.

01:31:19   What are you laughing at?

01:31:23   - Just imagine you have like these just regular trousers

01:31:26   that have this huge flapping pocket on the side of them.

01:31:29   - But I would go with the Mini.

01:31:32   - You're not like a super big guy, right?

01:31:35   There is no, you couldn't just hide that on your person.

01:31:39   - Who's saying, I'm not saying it's hidden,

01:31:41   but I have an old pair of cargo pants

01:31:43   which do have a pocket that's just big enough

01:31:45   for the iPad Mini.

01:31:46   And I've walked around sometimes with that

01:31:48   when I first got the iPad Mini to see like,

01:31:50   oh, is this a thing that I can just take out with me

01:31:52   back when I had a tiny phone?

01:31:53   And the answer was like not really super greatly

01:31:57   but if it was slightly thinner, slightly lighter

01:32:00   I would definitely rather have the iPad

01:32:03   because I do so much work on an iPad

01:32:05   I like the bigger screen of an iPad

01:32:07   and the phone part of the iPhone is the least relevant part to me at all

01:32:11   I just care that I have a persistent data connection

01:32:13   In fact, that would be a feature, not a bug, if I could no longer receive phone calls

01:32:17   because I hate phone calls

01:32:19   and everybody I know who would ever have to call me

01:32:21   You know what you can you can FaceTime audio me instead people

01:32:24   So that's what I would do iPad mini if I had to go down to just one keep it on me all the time

01:32:29   I would ask you Myke, but it's not even a question because you don't even like iPads. No, it's all changed

01:32:35   Your iPhone so I love my iPad air

01:32:39   Yeah, but not as much as your iPhone right exactly because I could just not use the iPad

01:32:44   Yeah, like I really really like it for a lot of stuff and when I'm at home now

01:32:47   it's like my favorite computer to use but I could just use my Mac and then when I'm out and about I don't want to

01:32:53   be carrying around

01:32:55   An iPad mini and a huge Charles a pocket

01:32:57   No, you could get a satchel for your iPad air and carry it around all the time. That'd be nice little man bag or something

01:33:03   You know, yeah, there you go. Perfect. Thank you. Maybe I'll do that instead then

01:33:06   Maybe I'll just wait until they bring out like the 20 inch iPad

01:33:09   And then I'll just drag it around in a little car or something. Well, I'm yeah in this theoretical scenario

01:33:14   We're you're only allowed one iOS device. Yep

01:33:16   Don't forget to buy t-shirts!

01:33:21   That's right, we are off. Hey, you're flying soon, right? Aren't you? You're

01:33:26   flying away? Yep, next Wednesday. Next Wednesday? Yep. So am I going to be

01:33:31   recording with you in uh in uh Hipsterland next time or what's

01:33:34   happening here? No, I will be incredibly jet-lagged in home.

01:33:37   I get home the day before we record next. Oh okay, okay, but so you won't be in

01:33:41   Portland then? No. With your people? No.

01:33:45   with my hairy fancy people. That's exactly right.

01:33:49   But yeah, so you enjoy your trip to Portland.

01:33:52   Thank you. I will speak to you next on the other side of that.

01:33:56   And for the listeners, last opportunity to go buy

01:33:59   a grey monkey shirt. The blue one.