Double Your Estimates, A Curious Mind & Voice Assistants 😎 😍 👌 #51

Double Your Estimates.

Early in my career an experienced Project Manager gave me advice that I still use: when estimating, come up with how long it’ll take then double it – that’s the number you give others. It’s surprising how often it works and how a simple equation reduces stress.

Here’s an example: you’re asked to finalise a presentation. In your mind you quickly work out that it should take you about a day. Say it’ll take 2 days.

Part of the reason it works is that it’s simple.

It recognises that the future can’t always be predicted in the moment: you may want to do something else that comes up, people may need longer to review, or a multitude of other things. It provides an opportunity to deliver early and remove unnecessary stress on those around you.

Delivering early is fun.

Curious?

OK, I know. It was only two emails ago that I declared my favourite book of the past ten years. It’s still true. This one, A Curious Mind, by Brian Grazer is nipping its heels!

Brian Grazer is an ultra-successful Hollywood Producer who promotes the role of curiosity in enjoyable and successful lives. In his twenties he deliberately met a new person each day and he explains how his 35 years of ‘curiosity conversations’ have informed so much of his work. He surprised me by talking of how he manages through curiosity: that through honestly asking questions people are empowered.

I particularly enjoyed his honesty and application of curious questions when working with actors who’s job it is to manipulate you in to believing them…

He also suggests we don’t recognise curiosity highly enough. I agree.

Let me know what you think if you read it. I’m …curious.

Thanks Caleb for the recommendation!

🎉🎉2 years 🎉🎉

The next of these emails will signify my having done so for 2 years.
Let me know what you’d like to read in celebration. Toot toot!

Be amazed.

So much is changing in the housing market [thanks Fred]:

Great reads / listens

  • Search “Burniske” (the author of CryptoAssets) on your podcasts app and many will come up. They’re probably all good. This one is a great extension to the book and also a summary of crypto assets book. [1 hour listen]
  • For the creatives ~ [thanks Nick]
    “the best way to thrive in your creative life is to pretend like you’re in Groundhog Day…”

For you / your CEO

  • If you’re wanting to quickly get up to speed on Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, Robert Scoble & Shel Israel’s The Fourth Transformation is a good overview. If you’ve already watched a few videos or followed VR & AR commentary, I suggest not much will be new to you. I liked learning about headsets picking up autism in children (and the potential for saving a lot of confusion).
  • Check out these fascinating comments on the current state of Voice Assistants:

Waving from an Autumnal Melbourne,

~ Sam

RunwayDigital.com

 

Ready Player One, Semi Lattes, and Extending Senses 🏃 🚚 👂#41

It was the “latte” in this Tesla semi post that made me grin.

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Books that you miss upon finishing.

I was entranced and entertained listening to Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.

VR/AR leaders often recommend it to experience one of our possible futures: ultra-simulation (in 2045). The impressive narration by Wil Wheaton often had me chuckling, the detail in the book astounded me and of course it was fun to hear the vast number of (familiar) 1980’s references.

It’s also a Spielberg movie to be released next year.

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Kevin Kelly in Recomendo.

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Favourite reads & listens

  • What senses would you extend?Neil Harbisson talks about going from full colourblindness to installing an antenna so he could hear sound. Apparently the cleaning product isle in the supermarket is like a fun nightclub! It’s an uplifting, fascinating, futuristic, 9:35min watch. Actually even the first few minutes is worth it to imagine a new dimension for you.Photo credit: Ted.com
  • Rolling Stone followed Elon around for months.Here are a few quotes that struck me:



  • The world is getting better at a stunning rate“. This report has “evidence of abundance” graphs and insights. Big thanks to Peter Diamandis and his team for showcasing how the world is improving. Here’s to balanced news.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Using algorithms and radical transparency at work may make your workplace even easier. (thx Jacqui Hocking)
  • The Websummit opening remarks are a great call for designers, creators, entrepreneurs and technologists to focus on building tech that is useful and fair for society. Included are: Stephen Hawking on AI, Bryan Johnson on HI, a regulator’s view of Facebook and other ultra powerful tech companies.

Great presence

  • Thanks for the laugh David Roberts (of Innovation and Disruption at Singularity University). Here is his bio: “His fascination with technology began In fourth grade after building a hovering electric drone, to carry his younger sister to the bus stop, powered by what was formerly his mother’s vacuum cleaner, and fortunately limited by the length of an electric power cord.”Have you added humour to yours?
  • Good fun at the London tube:

Have a wonderful week,

~ Sam

RunwayDigital.com

 

PS. One of the companies and experiences that have most impressed me in the last couple of years is Manly Ocean Adventures. Knowledgeable, exceptional value, and thoughtful, they’re advertising their incredible experiences (with or without whales) as great Christmas gift ideas. If you’re near Sydney or your people are… this could be for you!

 

 

PPS. in a previous email I wrote about the Apple Airpods. My update from a month of using them is that I’m still loving the earphones quick change between computer and iPhone and watch phonecall pickup. I am missing the ease of the Jaybirds hanging around my neck. The Airpods are a bit more of a cognitive load for me. They’re fiddly to remember where they are / to put in my pocket when I’m on the move and I sense I’ve a higher risk of losing them. Jaybird X2 Sport were around my neck all the time and I could use one or two earphones and never think about the battery or getting into the practice of taking out one Airpod during a long phonecall to make sure I have enough battery. The tech of the Airpods is beautiful and clever and it’s wonderful they can be used across many bluetooth devices – not just Apple’s. Airpods around the neck!?!

The Bitcoins keep going up and up and up, Omotenashi & VR 🌿 🐼 🌐 #40

Loads of fascinating developments have happened since I last wrote, including two blockchain tech conferences (Ethereal and Devcon) as well as bitcoin prices going through the roof (US$7,343 /AU$9651 when writing this) and masses of mainstream media attention. This new tech is really starting to touch our lives.

And another rocket went up and down.

How lucky we are to witness these happenings. This time is amazing.

You’re so Ethereal.

Jump onto YouTube to watch the Ethereal conference, specifically:

  • Here, Bryan Johnson fast forwards twenty years and links human intelligence with Blockchains – this is a quick watch and the bonus is: it’s in layman’s terms.
  • Joe Lubin starts the conference with Blockchain tech’s current state and future possibilities.
  • Peter Diamandis raises the concern of the linear nature of government and the exponential growth of technology. So apt.

The first link here is to the playlist of all videos. Enjoy and hit reply here with any questions you have.

Omotenashi.

Deliciousness + Learning = here.

“Omotenashi is the Japanese culture of treating a guest. It blends a welcoming spirit with warmth, understanding, and above all respect.”

Favourite reads & listens

  • Take a fun and fascinating tour of the international space station.
  • Great thinking on the rising Bitcoin prices from Laura Shin ~“The reasons for the jumps are unclear, but unless there’s negative news, every day, at minimum, the price is likely to rise because of new money coming into the system. Every day on Coinbase alone, about 35,000 new accounts open — a figure that sometimes reaches 50,000 — and thousands of people in South Korea and Japan, two countries where Bitcoin has taken off, are also bringing new fiat money [cash] into the system.”
  • Signup for rocket updates.
  • Here’s a great shortcut to reading Option B book mentioned in the last email. Watch the video on this page.
  • It was fascinating to learn about inserting signals in the brain so people can move prosthetic limbs and even turn on taps at the Stentrode Story event in April. To start with it’s accident victims who can’t move limbs. We may be next: imagine if you can get your mind to turn on a tap. Connecting humans to machines – it’s coming. Putting my order in for wings and flight now.
  • Jonathan Harris has returned with a fabulous tilt on Virtual Reality…

For your CEO and senior leaders

  • Nice one Jeff Bezos:

Great online presence

  • Impressive service, live chat and website that quickly answered questions ~ well done Aussie Broadband.

Reply to let me know what you want to read about.

Have a wonderful week,

~ Sam

RunwayDigital.com

 

Cryptocurrency & Micropartnerships #28

Here comes a previous issue of Online Highfliers. Sign up to get the latest issue in your inbox.


Hi Sam,

Welcome to the 28th edition of this email. Did you know you can read all past editions right here?

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Fintech, beyond capitalism and cryptocurrencies.

It was thrilling to see Bitcoin go to over US$2,000 last week. It’s not just about the monetary value of these new currencies though. It’s how the base technology (the blockchain) is providing a new platform from which to do business, to conduct transactions, to share personal information, and much more in a way that’s decentralised – i.e. not biased or influenced or potentially corrupted by those in power locally, by government, large organisations, and powerful individuals. It’s providing the opportunity to reimagine processes or systems that aren’t working as well as they could in the world.

If you’ve not yet heard or read much about the future possibilities of money and tech in the global economy, here are introductory links ~

The role of cryptocurrencies presented at last week’s Ethereal Summit. I highly recommend watching this full video. The first 4 minutes highlight where banking is headed, how online currencies could become the backbone to improve many systems in the world, and how they’re also not a ‘golden chalice’. At 10:30 there’s mention of how through the blockchain you can pay for your coffee at a cafe and also directly tip the coffee farmer a very small amount without fees on either side. There are incredible supply chain opportunities as the supporting tech comes to be and great opportunities in developing countries too.

Why Bitcoin matters (NYTimes)
What is Blockchain

A beginner’s guide to Ethereum
Ethereum is the Forefront of Digital Currency

Thanks to Ross Hill & his Coinbase friends for these links.

Remote / Flexible work.

Looking for a remote job with flexible hours? Here’s a list of sites and joblists to check:

Any other suggestions? Email me and I’ll keep the list going and distributed here.

Local events.

Get into learning! Check out your local meetup events on topics you’re interested in.

If you’re in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Singapore, Auckland and Perth Laneway Learning is fun.

Micropartnerships.

One of the great learnings I have from creating the Do Lectures here in Australia was the great gains from creating fast partnerships with brands / companies who increase the value provided to customers. This would play out by one of us having a sudden idea of a brand that could offer something to people attending then we’d get in touch via phone or email or through mutual contacts and really quickly we’d have products or experiences people could enjoy.

With this knowledge and as I see companies becoming more globally competitive, it’s powerful and increasingly necessary to have a proactive curiosity around what customers value and could gain from, an openness to get in touch with anyone who can help provide it and being aware of how to quickly build trust.

Who could you partner with fast to increase the worth to your customers?
How can you quickly create trust?

Digital Leadership.

How is your digital leadership learning coming along? Check in to this article to choose what you wish to learn or book a session with me to chart your course, to gain answers to current questions and more. Let’s see you flying high in your work and life opportunities.

Favourite reads & listens:

Great online presence:

  • Fascinating to recently meet Thomas King (thanks Jac) and hear his exciting intentions for the future of food in Australia. He has a clean, clear LinkedIn profile.
  • The extended list is here and here.

Have a fantastic week!

~ Sam

RunwayDigital.com

P.S. It was a treat to recently be in Tassie (Tasmania). Enjoy the photos here.

 

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Human-Centred Futures, Experiments & Writing Newsletters 💪 👀 🤓 #27

(Be prepared) This newsletter may have a few more typos than usual. I’m fitting it in in between a hectic play and work schedule and created it in 45 minutes which is a record for me. Hoping your week is wonderful! Have a great one.

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Human-Centred Futures.

Having just received a MASSIVE smile from the checkout person at the supermarket I’m even more delighted with this next phase of greater care, kindness and humanity that’s coming. So many organisations are starting to do more Service Design / Human Centred Design / People Experience Design in part because ‘average’ doesn’t cut it in many industries any more and because customers are global and can subconsciously or consciously demand more (quality / additional features / quicker deliver / better service). Also with more tracking more kindness will be observed and amplified online.

Knowing the supermarket I was in has been doing an internal overhaul for the past few years and training for better customer service and just now seeing the results, it reminds me this is what’s coming for most industries. As a consumer having better service sounds soooo good.

It’s good practice to go the extra mile. Aim high with what you’re doing and challenge others kindly to do the same. Create great ripple effects.

Do More Experiments.

A quick tip for more courage or to move on from indecision: Work out your best guess on the direction to take, make the decision in this direction, take action and call it an experiment. Don’t second guess yourself. Calling it an experiment can lighten your worries or concerns and build confidence in your intuition. Let me know how you go 🙂

Writing Newsletters.

This newsletter marks a year of me writing a fortnightly newsletter. Wahoo! If you’re thinking of writing a regular newsletter and have questions about doing so, hit reply. I’m interested to hear what you need to get your clever online.

Favourite reads & listens:

Great online presence:

  • Search consultant Andrew Bonwick’s articles help his potential clients, reiterate his services and show him as an expert. What articles could you publish on LinkedIn for your customers?
  • The extended list is here and here.

See you next time!

~ Sam

RunwayDigital.com

Thank you for inviting me into your inbox. Hit reply anytime.

Say ‘hi’ on Instagram and enjoy these fascinating audiobooks & podcasts.