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Taking Some Old Advice

Today I’m leaving my job as design partner at Google Ventures. Instead of another full-time job, I’m focusing my energy on writing. I have about twelve books in mind, including some nerdy fiction. And I’m gonna go for it.


My Year With a Distraction-Free iPhone

In 2012, I realized I had a problem. My iPhone made me twitchy. I could feel it in my pocket, calling me, like the Ring called Bilbo Baggins. It distracted me from my kids and my wife. It distracted me anytime, anywhere. I wanted...


How I Saved My Cat’s Life with a Selfie Stick

It’s New Year’s Day, 2016, and I’m standing in my bathroom trying to explain to the fire chief that I bought this selfie stick for the sole purpose of rescuing my cat. “Bullshit,” she says with a knowing smirk. “But let’s see...


How We Tried to Design Our Own Book Cover

Last June, with a near-complete draft of our book in hand, we began thinking about the cover design. We’re a team of designers, so how hard could it be? (Spoiler alert: Turns out it is very, very hard.)


Stop Brainstorming and Start Sprinting

For years, people have told us group brainstorms don’t work. A1958 Yale study found that individuals are emphatically better at problem-solving than teams of brainstormers. And yet, we keep right on brainstorming...


The Three-Hour Brand Sprint

For most of my career, any mention of the word brand made me uncomfortable. I figured it was a fine line between “brand exercise” and “total waste of time.” I was forced to confront my branding heebie-jeebies when I joined Google Ventures. 


How to Live, How to Work, and How to Die (or “Everything I Learned From My Dad But Can’t Possibly Put Into Words")

1985—A knock wakes me up, and Dad’s voice says it’s time to get up. I get dressed. It’s cold in the kitchen, dark outside the windows. I stare inside...