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The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers
The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers
Price: $13.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every CEO of a VC backed startup should read this book, March 10, 2014
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This is one of the best books you’ll ever read on entrepreneurship and being a CEO.

If you are a CEO, read this book.

If you aspire to be a CEO read this book.

If you are on a management team and want to understand what a CEO goes through, read this book.

If you are interested in entrepreneurship and want to understand it better, read this book.

On Friday, I spent the entire day with about 50 of the CEOs of companies we are investors in. Rand Fishkin of Moz put together a full day Foundry Group CEO Summit. It used a format Rand has used before. We broke up into five different groups and has sessions on about ten total topics throughout the day. The groups were fluid – people were organized by category (alpha and beta) but then went to the topic they were interested in. There was a moderator for each session – the first five minutes was each CEO putting up one “top of mind” issue in the topic, and the then balance of the session (75 minutes) was the entire group spending between 5 and 15 minutes on each topic.

It was awesome. We finished with a fun dinner at Pizzeria Locale. I drove home with my mind buzzing and arrived around 8pm to see Amy laying on the coach reading a book. So I grabbed by iPad and looked to see what was new on it.

I’d pre-ordered Ben’s book so it was in slot number one. It felt fitting to start reading it.

At 10:30 I was finished with it. The Hard Thing About Hard Things was the perfect way to cap off a day with the CEOs of the companies we invest in.

Trust me on this one. Go buy The Hard Thing About Hard Things right now.

Ben – thanks for writing this and putting 100% of your heart into it.


Get Some Headspace: How Mindfulness Can Change Your Life in Ten Minutes a Day
Get Some Headspace: How Mindfulness Can Change Your Life in Ten Minutes a Day
Offered by Macmillan
Price: $2.99

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid Addition to the Headspace Online Program, Which is Awesome, March 2, 2014
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My exploration into meditation continues. I started on February 5th when I wrote the post Learning To Meditate. Since then, I've been practicing every day, read a few books on meditation, talked to a lot of people about it, and explored several iPhone / web apps.

The impact on me has been awesome.

After talking to Jerry Colonna for a few hours about meditation on the snowy Sunday after I started, he recommended I take a look at Headspace. I signed up that night and started doing the Take10 meditations. For the first few days, I did it once a day, but then quickly starting practicing twice a day, once in the morning and once before I went to bed. Occasionally I'd toss in another session at lunch time, although sometimes I just did a silent meditation instead for 10 to 15 minutes.

After about a week I was deeply hooked. I grabbed the iPhone GetSomeHeadspace app and untethered myself from my desk. We've got a meditation room in our new house and even though it's very sparse right now (just one sitting pillow), it's a magnificent sanctuary for my meditation.

I noticed that Andy Puddicombe, the founder of Headspace, had written a book called Get Some Headspace: How Mindfulness Can Change Your Life in Ten Minutes a Day. I downloaded it and read it last night and this morning. Since I'm deep into the Headspace program, a lot of it was familiar to me. But Andy's description of his own meditation journey is fascinating, and reinforces a lot of things he guides you through in the Headspace program.

Near the end, he has a great chapter on different forms of meditation beyond sitting. He covers walking, sleeping, eating, and running. These are forms that intrigue me, especially since I run a lot, eat too fast, and am exploring different sleep patterns.

Overall, the book is a nice addition to the Headspace program. If you are intrigued about meditation, it's a fast, easy, helpful read. But there's nothing like just practicing. For that, I recommend you hop on line and try the free Headspace Take10 program.


The Year Without Pants: WordPress.com and the Future of Work
The Year Without Pants: WordPress.com and the Future of Work
Price: $14.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Solid insights, December 15, 2013
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I'm a huge WordPress fan and user. I also was an early investor in Intense Debate before WordPress acquired them. The stories in the book were great and Scott did a nice job of both telling stories and then generalizing insights from them. It dragged in a few places, but overall painted an interesting picture of a fascinating company.


Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture
Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $9.51

5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible origin story of id Software, December 14, 2013
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I love origin stories. Many are shallow or overly dramatic in an effort to tell a story rather than capture the essence of what happened and why it was so important. This one totally nailed it.


The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
Offered by Hachette Book Group
Price: $9.60

4.0 out of 5 stars Complex but very useful, December 7, 2013
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Like other contemporary books about the rise of currently dominant tech companies, a book like this one is hard to write, but generally fascinating to read. if you the filter of "this is not an authorized history or biography" Stone did a really good job of capturing a lot of the Amazon story - and style of the company.


The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune
The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune

5.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly fascinating and inspiring, December 5, 2013
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If it was just an entrepreneurial success story, it would still be a great book. The philanthropic story was powerful. Best of all was the complex relationship between the founders of DFS both before and after their huge success. While a business history and biography, it read as well as a novel.


What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20
What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers
Price: $11.89

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Solid advice for anyone in college, December 3, 2013
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The title matches the book nicely. if you are 18 - early 20s and interested in a solid dose of Silicon Valley life philosophy then this book is perfect for you. some of the stories are well known and others are very valley centric, but Tina Seelig does a good job of weaving her own personal experience, stories, and friendships into a good philosophy of life book aimed at someone just discovering themselves as an adult.


Reamde: A Novel
Reamde: A Novel
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers
Price: $8.89

5.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly awesome, December 3, 2013
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This review is from: Reamde: A Novel (Kindle Edition)
Neal Stephenson gets better and better with every book. I loved this one - read it in three days. Crazy awesome good.


The Circle
The Circle
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolute Genius, November 28, 2013
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This review is from: The Circle (Kindle Edition)
I love Eggers writing. I heard very negative things from some of my silicon valley friends that stood in stark contrast to the literary reviews I've seen. The literary reviews were correct - this is a spectacular book at many levels. It's especially important for any working on - or living in - the future.


Scrivener Absolute Beginner's Guide
Scrivener Absolute Beginner's Guide
Price: $9.99

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid Overview, November 27, 2013
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I've got a mild obsession with Scrivener and have wrestled through using it for two of my books. This book helped me understand some things I've been struggling with and helped me discover a bunch of features I didn't know about.


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