Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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A Mixed Bag

It’s time again for me. The one where write down a whole bunch of random things I’ve been talking/thinking about and let you choose whether there’s a reason to write more.

Thoughtless Tools

Great tools make you want to use them. A site like Flickr is such a pleasure to interact with that I want to post my pictures there. Unfortunately, as far as business tools go, there aren’t a whole lot that people don’t despise (hence 37signals’ success). What I’ve been wondering lately is whether it’s possible to build tools that people use without even knowing it? That’s not to say you’re spying on them, but rather that you’ve created a tool with a barrier to entry of zero. Not quite sure how to make this happen, though I imagine something having to do with attention data would be a good start . . .

Long Tables

One of the coolest things about Naked is the long table we all sit at. While at first a bit intimidating and at times somewhat loud, the pros far outweigh the cons. Being able to overhear conversations and interject where appropriate is where a lot of good ideas come from. Gladwell talked about this kind of stuff in his great piece on office design (which I think I’ve sent to 10 people in the last week). Over the weekend I had a long conversation about how to maintain a small company feel when a company’s not so small anymore. Clearly the space plays a big roll, but ultimately the question to me is how you foster a more serendipitous environment.

likemind as API

Working on a much longer piece on this, but I can’t help but think of likemind as an API for much larger things the members of the community will accomplish in the near future.

There must be more stuff I’m thinking about that I just can’t pull out of my brain right now. So how about all of you? What are you thinking about? What kind of half-baked ideas do you have?

Oh, and would anyone have an interest in writing something for the site? I am thinking about doing one day a week where I post something someone else wrote. Is this appealing?

March 26, 2007