issue 006 2021-11-03

Morfternight

by Paolo Belcastro

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Hello [subscriber:firstname | default:Morftenighter]!

Thank you so much to all of you who took a moment to reply to the last issue and tell me your preference between black or white background.

Also many thanks for making my life easier by ALL choosing the white background so I wouldn't have second thoughts or doubts.

I'd like to answer two specific questions that were asked in your emails:

  • To James, asking why I didn't include a poll instead of asking for an email: It's just because I love the idea of engaging in a dialogue, and I think that one of the biggest benefits of a newsletter is that you welcome me in your inbox, and I do the same for you.
  • To Florian, suggesting that the colours could be driven by a media query and adjust to the recipient computer settings between light and dark: I don't see an easy way to do this, but I'll look into it because it would be awesome!
Let's keep this thing going, never hesitate to hit reply and send me a note.

And now to Morfternight, the newsletter that wants you to read it!

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The Danube

Am Ring

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A few days ago, I listened to a great episode of Tim Ferris' podcast with Chris Dixon and Naval Ravikant.It is long but definitely worth listening to. Along the way, I picked up a mention of an old Chris Dixon post: Climbing the wrong hill, which is a short and excellent read.

It reminded me of another article, "How to Get Over Inevitable Local Maximum?".

It's interesting how both life and product face the same obstacles and solve the same problems. But, in the end, it often boils down to two ideas: do not optimize for short term rewards and leave space to randomness and the possibility of being surprised.
Shifting gears, here's an essay I wrote. It's something I have been thinking about for a very long time, as I built a career disconnected from any office or fixed schedule. I'd love to listen to your point of view on these questions and push the reflection deeper together.

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You need leaders, not managers.

I have been thinking about how we measure value creation in the context of managing and leading teams for over two decades now, and I want to explain why Autonomy is the most critical characteristic of successful teams.

We use three primary metrics to measure the value of work:

1. Input, or time spent.
2. Output, or production volume.
3. Outcomes, or value created.

These represent the past, the present, and the future of performance evaluation.

Read more

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A section for things that tickled my brain, made me sweat, laugh, or get angry at clouds...

It appears that Facebook is building the Metaverse... I won't even add a link here; it's hard enough to avoid those given the coverage Zuck's video keynote got.

What's funny is that this is something that was in the books many years ago. It was hype in the early '90s, and while we always know that devices would eventually become powerful enough to make it possible, back then, what seemed unlikely was to connect all humans to the same network in a reasonable amount of time.

Fast forward 30 years, and here we are... :)

What's sad is that Facebook actually has the keys to pull this out and make it happen, given the vast user base they have across their products. A Metaverse controlled by Facebook seems like a recipe to realise the worst predictions from Gibson's, Stephenson's and Egan's books, just to name a few.

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That's it for today! You can find more of my stuff on paolo.blog, and if you think that someone you know could enjoy Morfternight, the newsletter to share, please forward it to them or send them this link to subscribe.

Cheers!
Paolo
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Morfternight, the newsletter that ends here!