Sunday, November 30, 2008

this is not what i would call 'over-selling'

Chris wins the day with this picture of our favorite sandwich board on the way to our favorite Chinese restaurant in SF.

Also, it's not blurry at all -- get your eyes checked.

it's like twitter is mocking me

I'd just twittered about how my Blackberry Pearl survived a 15 story free fall (sent via txt from said phone). And when I logged on, this "Is your phone okay?" message greeted me.

Real comforting, guys. It turns out I'd shut off my ability to send/receive txts thanks to a fail-ful phone conversation with AT&T to enable tethering.

But even that couldn't dampen my glee when the maintenance worker retrieved my phone from the bowels of the elevator shaft. Yes, I managed to drop it through the crack between the elevator and the hallway. Look at it sometime, you'd never think someone could do that, but this is a skill that comes only with much practice (10,000 hours, Malcolm!).

Oh, and I'm a shareholder in Research in Motion (makers of the Blackberry) but don't consider this an attempt to single-handedly resurrect the company's stock -- I'm saving that magic (and my last sacrificial goat) for Yahoo!.

Friday, November 28, 2008

andrew sullivan cheers "the power of the reddit generation"

We had a nice mention in this FastCompany article by Chris Dannen: People-Powered Internet Grows Up

Reddit is a user-generated clearinghouse for "what's new online." Like its rival,, the site presents visitors with a numbered list of linked headlines that they can either vote up or down, depending on their taste; anyone can submit headlines, but no one is paid.

"There's a core group of Reddit users that are submitting and editing," says Alexis Ohanian, Reddit's 25-year-old co-founder. "But [at] some point we're going to hit the ceiling of nerds on the Internet who want to share cool, geeky stories. It's depressing, but we know that we will." So to keep the 3-year-old site growing at a brisk pace, the Reddit team--which says it receives about 4.3 million unique hits per month--recently announced a new function on the site that will allow users to create Reddits for their own online communities.
And Andrew Sullivan added some 'Cool Whip to the pumpkin pie' (Thanksgiving's answer to the 'icing on the cake' cliche) with a brief entry, The Human Algorithm:
Chris Dannen sees the power of the Reddit generation.
The power of the reddit generation.  I like the sound of that. Chris and Andrew, I hope you each got an extra slice of pie.

Wish you all had a great Thanksgiving -- no shortage of things to be thankful for here.

Monday, November 24, 2008

reddit will help you lose your virginity and make your goat famous -- not simultaneously (the la times said so)

Somehow I missed this post on reddit, but Mark Milian of the LA Times technology blog didn't:

Thanks to some attention from Reddit, the social news website, Help a Virgin has seen a major surge in Web traffic. The site has been up since at least the summer (the last time it was updated was July), but after it hit Reddit's front page on Sunday, the traffic counter has more than doubled -- to 80,000 and rising. At this rate, his scheme won't succeed (he wouldn't even get half the target number) so he'll definitely need some additional attention. (He didn't respond to my e-mail requests for an interview, but, then again, I'm not a woman.)
In other news, reddit will also help make your goat photos famous:
A photo of mountain goats scaling a cliff, featured on Roger Eickholt's Flickr page, was all the rage on Monday. It was plastered on social media sites and around the blogosphere, driving more than 200,000 people to view it. [...]

When Eickholt analyzed Flickr's link referral page to make sense of his newfound prominence, topped the list. What is Reddit, you ask? "This website talks about current events and stuff like that, I guess," said Eickholt. "I have no idea. I've never really been to those websites before."

Reddit, like all social media websites, is serendipitous. Few know what type of photograph, video or news bit is going to explode, and what's going to fizzle. And often times, content creators aren't the ones who submit their own links -- they don't discover that their photos had struck gold until later. "It just seems so random," Eickholt said. "You never know what's going to take off like that."

Welcome to reddit, Roger.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

co2stats up for a crunchie

It's almost time for some frivolous Web 2.0 awards -- must be the Crunchies!

I purposefully haven't written about my investments before, but VentureBeat spilled the beans a little while back. One startup I've invested in is CO2Stats.

They've developed a way to analyze a site's total power consumption and automagically purchase carbon credits to offset it. The duo behind it is a force to be reckoned with and their business model is straightforward. Being profitable definitely helped, too.

While I don't believe carbon offset credits are the total solution for combating climate change, they're an effective step in the right direction.

I naturally felt compelled to vote for them. And some part of me feels it's my duty to include that link in a blog entry. That, and work on a mascot for their green search engine: GreenSeng.

the internet shows its support for crowbars and gordon freeman

Our crowbar announcement went over well on reddit, fark, and Destructoid. But that was to be expected -- these communities understand the importance of having this crowbar at CERN and in the hands of Dr. Freeman.

But this important event didn't go unnoticed elsewhere:

Friday, November 21, 2008

gordon freeman gets his crowbar, the internet responds gleefully

Not surprisingly, the dramatic conclusion of gaming.reddit's crowbar intiative did well on reddit and fark. If you haven't seen them yet, the photos and video are pretty spectacular.

We couldn't have done it without AlpineKat, the physcist also responsible for such Internet greatness as The Large Hadron rap.

We've gotten some nifty remixes from redditors (below are two of them) and our friends at Destructoid are soliciting photoshop and YTMND awesomeness from their own community. And to top it all off, Fark gives it their blessing -- after all, they provided the invaluable Half-life strategy guide, so Gordon would know exactly what to do when it all goes down.

shopped (or is it?) by TheNoxx

shopped (with gusto) by iamah

Thursday, November 20, 2008

we care about frog literacy

Blast from the past: Aaron emailed a surprising shoutout (albeit unintentional) from a book on lit crit.

A friend tells me that in the book An Introduction to Literature, Criticism and Theory (Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle), there appears a joke along the lines of:

Q: What does a frog say when you give him a book?
A: reddit, reddit, reddit, reddit, ...
Deep down, I'm imagining Nicholas Royle is a hardcore redditor.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

finally a site for online metal fanatics

This was an amusing reddit submission: Enought with the FAQ pages. These guys have a RAQ page!

It didn't go unnoticed by the folks over at, who blogged about the reddit-love. So if you've seen one too many FAQs in your day, try the Rarely Asked Questions of

There's a lot to learn:

Q. Dealer has a 6 showing, you've got a 6 and a 5. What is the correct play?
A. Double Down

Monday, November 17, 2008

reddit aliens in your office, watching you code

The FogCreek offices in NY have a bit of an infestation problem. The kind that bobbles.

After an interview Steve and I did on the StackOverflow podcast, I decided the FogCreek offices needed a box of happy aliens to combat the economic madness happening down on Wall St.

Hopefully they'll improve productivity, like Dundies, or at least tossed off the side of their building.

I've seen evidence of a LOLmagnetz plague on their office fridge as well... I think the aliens are in good hands.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

mushroom.reddit has a perfect first submission

We don't have a mushroom.reddit yet, but if we did, this recent find by qgyh2 would be number one. It'd be really impressive seeing this mushroom formation on a pizza. I'll keep dreaming...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

reddit hires a trouble-making rogue

I announced it on the reddit blog but ReadWriteWeb trumpeted our newest hire with panache:

Here's a hot hire we missed last week - another community manager position - this time at social news site Reddit. Erik Martin, by all accounts a trouble-making rogue, has joined the Reddit staff to assist the many users of the site.
Erik still doesn't have an alien avatar, so I really ought to be working on that instead of blog entries.

Read about his alien abduction on his blog.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

startup insights from dharmesh shah - in video!

Couldn't make it to Business of Software 2008? Not only did you miss Pierre Francois, you also missed a presentation with actual substance (and great style) given by Dharmesh Shah of OnStartups. is a big fan.

Don't fret! You can view it below, which you really should do if you have any interest in startups or penguins:

I lied, there are no penguins in his talk, but now that you've watched it, I don't think you're complaining.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

yes we did

I remember when he first announced his candidacy -- didn't think I'd actually see the day he'd become President of the United States. Wtg, America.

we pay joel and jeff a visit on the stackoverflow podcast

Steve and I skyped into a podcast with Joel Spolsky and Jeff Atwood last week to discuss all things reddit. Stop reading and start listening here. We had some technical difficulties, so there were a couple redos, but the finished version sounds pretty solid. You'll never know when I went on my 3 minute stream of profanities.

I promised the guys a newer, hipper StackOverflow mascot (great site, btw) and I'm finally delivering:

Enjoy, gentlemen. StackOverflow will never be the same.

Monday, November 03, 2008

super reddit man!

This caught my eye last week, but it's eternally relevant. After much speculation, here's what super reddit man looks like:

Click for the rest of the comic. You know you want to. POW! BANG!

this is a dainty cow, one of many cute pictures you can find on

In this time of heated campaigning, I'm asking for your vote on for this dainty cow. This is the kind of change America really needs.

And here's an ad we're running for TheCuteList that preys on your fears of economic meltdown. TheCuteList is not ashamed for running a dirty campaign.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

sxsw isn't going to be as yc-tastic as i hoped, but ars technica and roflcon are sure to please

After the second round of panel announcements, it looks pretty clear that my Y Combinator panel isn't going to happen. Making it a broader look at startup fundraising strategies would have probably helped. I really hoped I'd get to make that orange kool-aid, too.

Nonetheless, we're still heading to SXSW next year and I'd like to promote two panels that did make the cut.

Ken Fisher of Ars Technica is hosting a panel on building and maintaining strong online communities. I know he's got some strong panelists, too ;)

Tim Hwang of ROFLCon will also be discussing the state of the Internet Memescape. The panel title includes the years 2008-2010. One can only suspect that Tim has some sort of time-travel machine, which lets him see the Internet of 2010. Fascinating.