You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2008.

Look at Spiderman’s shirt.

Amateur blogger Leora Zellman has announced on her blog that she is going to be selling ad spots on her body at tech conference.

But Eric, this is nothing like prostitution. True.

But is this similar to a stripper that profits from people staying at her body? Not really that close, but the principles are the same… people are not interested in your mind, but in your physique.

Sure, guys are pigs, tech dorks are very unsocial, and have a difficult time talking to girls (why do you think Geek Brief is so popular).  And most importantly, I am all for taking advantage of business opportunities.  So I do not blame Leora, and I actually think this is really smart…captive audience, newsworthy, and has great WOM attributes.

But if this proves to be very profitable, will every semi-attractive female start selling ad space?

I thought that woman who sold ad space on her pregnant belly at the super bowl was unbelievable. This isn’t that bad, but what’s next?

On a side note, I’ll get a tatoo of any startup across my chest, rip off my shirt at the next SF tech conference, and scream like the Incredible Hulk the .com, for a small fee of $10mm

Did you ever get criticized for some­thing you tried that worked out? When we pioneered customer reviews, it was incredibly controversial. I got letters from publishers saying, “You don’t understand your business. You make money when you sell things. Take down those negative customer reviews.” We’ve never done anything of real value that wasn’t at least a little bit controversial when we did it. But if you want to be a pioneer, you have to be comfortable being misunderstood.

Here are Nassim Taleb’s top 10 life tips, all worthwhile, from this profile:

1. Skepticism is effortful and costly. It is better to be sceptical about matters of large consequences, and be imperfect, foolish and human in the small and the aesthetic.

2. Go to parties. You can’t even start to know what you may find on the envelope of serendipity. If you suffer from agoraphobia, send colleagues.

3. It’s not a good idea to take a forecast from someone wearing a tie. If possible, tease people who take themselves and their knowledge too seriously.

4. Wear your best for your execution and stand dignified. Your last recourse against randomness is how you act — if you can’t control outcomes, you can control the elegance of your behaviour. You will always have the last word.

5. Don’t disturb complicated systems that have been around for a very long time. We don’t understand their logic. Don’t pollute the planet. Leave it the way we found it, regardless of scientific ‘evidence’.

6. Learn to fail with pride — and do so fast and cleanly. Maximise trial and error — by mastering the error part.

7. Avoid losers. If you hear someone use the words ‘impossible’, ‘never’, ‘too difficult’ too often, drop him or her from your social network. Never take ‘no’ for an answer (conversely, take most ‘yeses’ as ‘most probably’).

8. Don’t read newspapers for the news (just for the gossip and, of course, profiles of authors). The best filter to know if the news matters is if you hear it in cafes, restaurants… or (again) parties.

9. Hard work will get you a professorship or a BMW. You need both work and luck for a Booker, a Nobel or a private jet.

10. Answer e-mails from junior people before more senior ones. Junior people have further to go and tend to remember who slighted them.