Attentiveness

I have never been — and presumably never will be — a proponent of attempts to hack productivity. I find it to be, at best, self-defeating.

Of course, that's one man's utterly subjective and outrageously reductive opinion. Worse, it's an opinion with flaws compounded by the stinging fact that I rarely have a strong handle on my day-to-day obligations.

I preach (and live) an organic and naturalized approach to leading a productive life, but I frequently — as all humans do, I suppose — fail to uphold even the most crucial tasks I've dedicated myself toward.

OneThirtySeven, this weblog, has very much facilitated the professional growth I've undergone over the past year or so. Launched in November 2011, the website has carried me from interested nobody to engaged somebody (albeit with a relatively small reach). And yet, for all of the gains, I fail to find the time to dedicate to this once confidence and happiness-inducing platform.

My attention is most obviously divided between my upcoming startup, Need, and my podcast with Myke Hurley, Bionic. (I also help with WELD, work with startups, and serve as an advisor to a handful of startups, but they pose relatively minor impacts on my day-to-day when compared to Need and Bionic.)  Although those are both, of course, fantastic objects deserving of my attention, there is a distinct feeling of anxiety I feel every time I catch a glimpse of the OneThirtySeven favicon sitting — neglected — in my browser's bookmark bar.

For as much as my other projects are gaining popularity and intrigue, OneThirtySeven was the first and foremost result of my desire to breakaway from the corporate world. It was a naive, fun, and important means for escape. And it's one I've carelessly allowed to fall into inauspicious silence. 

I've written before that I wish to write one long-form article per week here. I've equally made statements of my intentions to never let this site fall into disuse. Obviously, as I write this, I've failed on both accounts. 

Simply put, my professional place is increasingly divergent from the world of independent technology writing. I articulate opinions on Bionic and Twitter, but I rarely have the time to write a lengthy piece about the state of Yahoo! or the latest iPhone. 

Nevertheless, I wish I did. 

I write this not as a resignation or with the intention of garnering empathy. I write it as a means to hold myself publicly accountable for my attentiveness to the properties that mean the most to me. I write it so that you, the reader, might occasionally send me an email or tweet decrying my silence.  I write it so that I, on those days I dare to visit my own quiet weblog, will remember that I have a promise to uphold.

Perhaps I'm simply ushering this piece of prose into a decrepit room no longer occupied by people who care to listen. In fact, I suspect that is, indeed, the case. This outlet, however, has never been about the size of the audience or the quantity of page views. It has been about the catharsis of writing, the joy of spilling my thoughts for others — however many — to dissect, and, most importantly, to meet fascinating people with similar interests.

I fully intend to continue writing here. I don't wish to shutter the site and write on, god forbid, Medium, about trite tips and tricks for marketing your startup. (How on earth do we let people do that in the first place?) I have opinions I wish to share and I have discussions I intend to pursue with all of you.  But I — and I'm happy to admit this — am utterly flawed. This site, too, is utterly flawed. For that, I simply an acknowledge that, yes, both myself and my work are irrevocably imperfect. And I'm at peace with that.

What I'm not at peace with is the passive allowance of such a personally important thing to fall into neglect for the betterment of something newer and shinier. (There's an obvious and grandiose metaphor to be gleaned from this acknowledgement, but I'll save us all the excruciation and allow it to simply sit there quietly awaiting your groans and yawns. )

I don't intend to fall into the mold of virtually all startup founders and start writing about the trials and tribulations of launch a company and raising venture funding. (Hint: it's just the same as doing any other intensive job, but there's far more narcissism involved. Everyone is busy, everyone faces daily struggles, and pretending entrepreneurial endeavors are exceptional is reductive.) I want to write about topics that matter to all of us, rather than taking the easy route towards meaningless page views.

For all of this verbosity, I simply mean to state publicly that I intend to do what I love — regardless of what ramifications it might pose — and write. I don't know how I'll manage that, but — and I say this to myself — I promise I'll try. 

Fifty (Podcast) Years

Last week, Bionic turned 50.  (Accurately, in this instance.)

In other words, Myke and I have been broadcasting our show for over a year. During that time, Bionic has won an award or two, been subject to its fair share of controversy, and has moved to 5by5. Not to mention sexy cruises, android toilets, tearaway trousers, and other such valuable  content.

For those who don't know the back-story, it took Myke several weeks to convince me to co-host the show with him. He'd arranged the name, artwork, concept, and sponsorships, but I was simply not ready to dive into the world of podcasting. Of course — Myke being a persuasive British personality — I eventually signed up.

And I couldn't be more grateful that I did so. 

Today, as I'm becoming ever-increasingly involved in the startup ecosystem in the U.S. and Europe, OneThirtySeven suffers due to my lack of time. I simply don't have the cognitive freedom to sit down and write a few thousand words about Instagram the same as I did six months ago.

In its place, however, Bionic keeps me very much attuned to the technology world. From an agnostic perspective, Myke and I cover the biggest entities in the technology ecosystem. And, for those who listen, you'll be aware that my opinions can often be expressed just as they would here on OneThirtySeven  (i.e., lengthy monologues about the state of the industry).

In many respects, Bionic is better than it has ever been. We've hit our stride post-70Decibels (rest in peace) and my opinions are often exclusively being aired via the show. 

So, for those who miss more frequent content here, I highly recommend experimenting with Bionic.  We're a mature, 50-year-old podcast now. (A PILF, if you will?)

For those who simply want to see more content right here, I've made it a goal to do just that, too. I'll be writing one or two long-form articles every week.

Although people have expressed a desire to see more ephemeral content on OneThirtySeven  — as it was in the early days — I simply will not have the time to do such content justice. Accordingly, various pieces of (frequently inappropriate) ephemera will be shared almost exclusively on Twitter.

OneThirtySeven  will be home to regular columns about the state of our industry, Bionic will be home to my long-form, specific thoughts on the latest news, and Twitter will be where I link to BuzzFeed listicles.

This site's readership continues to grow on a month-to-month basis, for which I am outrageously humbled and grateful. And I will do my utmost to serve that readership in the very best way possible. 

So, subscribe to OneThirtySeven 's RSS, Bionic via 5by5 (or iTunes), and find me on Twitter. It'll be glorious.

San Francisco (January 30 - February 5)

From this afternoon (Wednesday, January 30) through next Tuesday (February 5), I'm going to be in San Francisco for a combination of work, Macworld 2013, the Crunchies Awards, and Superbowl festivities. If you're in town and you're reading this, I'd love to have a coffee.

For the next day or two, with the exceptions of some meetings, I plan to spend most of my time in and around Macworld. Although I don't intend to spend lengthy periods on the exhibition floor itself, I'll undoubtedly be very nearby — most likely at Blue Bottle or a bar of some kind — during the day.

Outside of the conference, I'll be attending most of the social events surrounding Macworld and the Crunchies over the next few days. As for the weekend, I've left my schedule mostly open.

If you'd like to introduce yourself, catch-up, or just generally have a beer, please do reach out. The best part of these trips is meeting new, like-minded people. So, don't hesitate to stop me in the street if you spot me.

This time last year, I was a newcomer to the community and setting aside social barriers at Macworld was one of the best decisions I could've possibly made. Friends I made back then remain some of my closest Internet contacts to date.

So, if you're around Macworld, the Crunchies, or just generally live in the vicinity, please say "Hello." In the words of David Sparks, "Make yourself uncomfortable and introduce yourself to people and make some new friends. You're among family at Macworld and you won't regret it."

As always, you can reach me via Twitter or email throughout.