If You Want to Work in a Startup, Get Used to Everything Breaking All of the Time

Posted by on Apr 22, 2014 in Work | 2 Comments

Startups attract people for different reasons. Freedom, control, decentralized authority, loving your job, making a difference, the allure of potential wealth, the sheer energy of the whole thing—take your pick. This world is a wild and wonderful roller coaster that ruins some and makes kings of others. If you have the constitution for it, entrepreneurship […]

The Best Plan is the One That’s Happening

Posted by on Apr 22, 2014 in Work | No Comments

I have a fair amount of experience in the world of agency and client work. One thing that always struck me as interesting about both worlds is the need for a perfect plan. A majority of the system is built around carefully crafted and detailed plans and, equally as, if not more important, the sale […]

Airplane Propellers as a Nearly Perfect Version One

Posted by on Apr 13, 2014 in Nerdery | No Comments

I recently wrote about the strange comfort I find in ships and the fact that on a basic level they’ve remained largely the same for thousands of years. Airplane propellers are similar. The propeller as a mechanical device has been used in aquatic applications for a long time, beginning with Archimedes’ Screw (in the 3rd century […]

Quick Takes: Mini Weather Stations

Posted by on Apr 13, 2014 in Quick Takes | No Comments

Recently I had a job placement meeting with a student named Todd. He’s in his late 40s. The beginning of class was a bit rough, and at a few points I think he questioned whether he was going to make it. Low and behold, weeks later he had more than persevered: his final project consisted […]

Quick Takes: In Good Company with Smashing Boxes

Posted by on Apr 10, 2014 in Quick Takes | No Comments

I’m in Durham for a few days laughing our first code school in North Carolina. We are partnered with a company called Smashing Boxes, and getting to know them has been a privilege. Walking through their office the other day, I overheard a developer and a designer discussing a project. One if them said, “look, […]

Ships as Thousand-Year-Old Tools

Posted by on Mar 31, 2014 in Life, Photos | No Comments

I’m in Charleston helping launch the first round of Academy classes. Amidst the craziness of last minute preparations, my wife and I stole a few moments to run out to Sullivan’s Island for a walk by the waves. As we arrived a huge barge was entering the harbor, and when we left another was leaving. […]

User Experience Fail: No Ice Cream for You

Posted by on Mar 26, 2014 in Nerdery | No Comments

It’s hard to call any machine that gives you ice cream a failure, but this one is about as close as they come. (Your product shouldn’t need Sharpie scrawled all over it just to be useable). What’s truly remarkable is that the machine is simple: it only has one lever that goes up and down. […]

Letters to the Company: Sales, Storytelling and The Iron Yard

Posted by on Mar 26, 2014 in Work | 2 Comments

When I have the opportunity, I write letters to our company. They are generally attempts to either encapsulate our collective philosophy on a certain subject or remind our team why we do what we do (and why we are who we are). Recently everyone on the team sprinted (successfully) through an intense marketing push as […]

Happy 92nd, Papa

Posted by on Mar 24, 2014 in Life, Photos | 2 Comments

Today we made a trip to the mountains to wish my grandfather a happy 92nd birthday. Here he is walking out of his shop after finding a tool my dad and I needed to borrow from him: The last living member of a 397-man troop, time spent with him is always inspiring. He recounts war […]

Making it Count: Values, Beliefs and Precious Hours

Posted by on Mar 21, 2014 in Life, Work | 12 Comments

This is the second post in a series answering the question, “How do you get everything done?“ I have the opportunity to talk with people starting new careers every day. They are at different points in their journey: some are looking to attending our code school as a way to pivot their life on to […]

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