Saturday Musings and Special Thanks To Bevvy for the Free Drinks!

Wow, this week went by really quickly! Maybe that’s just a product of doing so many exciting things but damn, time really does fly. I’ve got a lot of musings but am going to try to keep my musings at a maximum of five so I don’t get too carried away.

Before I start I’d just like to give a huge thanks to Bevvy for the free drinks this week. I did a post about Bevvy a couple weeks ago, they are a cool new services that allows you to get 50%-off your bar tab at select venues in Los Angeles all tied to a secret password. I used it for the first time this week and it was awesome, definitely a cool concept, I just hope they can actually make money doing it…but that is for another post!

Okay, onto my weekend musings.

  1. Xelot is getting ready for primetime! Yes, it’s taken us a lot longer than we thought, but we think it will definitely have been worth the wait. Daina and I have spent most of the year working  during morning, evenings, and weekends. It has become a major passion for us and an incredible collaboration. Daina has an expertise in mathematical and statistical algorithms (yes, she’s a geek like me!) which has made Xelot possible. We’ve consulted with some big names in the software space, investors, innovators, and of course plenty of end-users who have given valuable feedback. Building software is a lot of work but having full control over what we build has been amazing. We are working 12 hours today and 12 hours tomorrow on our final beta rev which will go out to the beta testers this week.
  2. TeamLauncher Rocks! I’m not sure if you’ve heard of Team Launcher, if you haven’t you should check them out. Led by Jodi Chamberlain this outsourcing company has produced results far beyond anything I’ve ever seen with oDesk or eLance. Rather than just hiring a random person that you have to keep track of, team launcher picks the right person for the job, and then has a full time manager that makes sure they are in the office and doing the work, and doing it right. The quality level I’ve seen from Team Launcher is far-and-beyond anything I’ve seen before and I’m getting ready to do even more with them. This has been a huge relief for me as I’ve found that outsourcing in the past has been a lot to manage and I have to constantly fire and re-hire which is a huge pain in the you know what.
  3. Holy crap Dropbox was valuated at over 5 billion. I have to give a huge congratulations to Dropbox who is raising some serious dough and has been valued at over 5 billion dollars. I use Dropbox and love the service but still it amazes me that they were able to take a concept that a zillion other people were already doing and become an absolute super-star. It just goes to show how good user experience, marketing, and great people can make something people want to use. Dropbox didn’t think of something completely new or groundbreaking, they just did things differently and really solved a problem.
  4. DomainTheft is off to an amazing start! It’s been an exciting two weeks in the world of and I’ll be doing a full post with an update next week, but here’s a quick update. So far we’ve been getting a nice stream of thefts reported and we’ve seen a very positive response from domain owners, partners, and law enforcement agencies. We have also been getting some solid feedback from people with good experience recovering domains, along with people who have had domain names stolen. The press has been amazing too and it was really exciting to see DomainTheft talked about in the newspaper I grew up with, the San Francisco Chronicle. What I heard from Venture Capitalists and Angel Investors at Lean Startup Machine is that most companies don’t get it right the first time around, it takes multiple pivots and the willingness to take feedback and make changes based on that feedback. I am doing exactly that and look forward to sharing our first pivot with you next week!
  5. I need a more comfortable chair. The search is on for a more comfortable desk chair. I currently use a chair I bought for about $300 at Office Depot but I think it’s time for an upgrade given the amount of sitting I do each day. Since I also do a lot of exercise I want to make sure I keep my body as ergonomically correct as possible when I’m sitting throughout the day. Any suggestions on which chair I should get? I’ve heard Herman Miller makes great chairs but would love to know what some of my fellow work-from-home warriors are using!

Okay, back to Xelot coding. Just to set the scene – we’re in the loft, Samsie is on my lap (our cat), we both have ice cold Sierra Nevada’s, and we have awesome music from Spotify playing in the background on a pair of beautiful Focal Speakers (from France). Once we’re done coding I’ll be making my famous vegetable stir fry (by which I mean one of the only things I can actually cook) and watching Star Trek Voyager on Netflix. Life is good 🙂


{ 8 comments… add one }

  • Josh August 14, 2011, 6:48 am

    Re: office chairs
    I recently upgraded from a model that could have been used as a medieval torture device. After a long search, I went with the True Innovations Model 8090. Interestingly, I can’t find the exact model for sale anywhere online, but here is the info: The only place I know it is available is at Costco’s physical location. I have been sitting in it for 12+ hours per day for almost 2 months with much less back pain than before (I never had back problems before my previous chair). I do have a small cushion that I use for my upper back with the True Innovations model. One positive thing about buying from Costco is their return policy. As far as I understand, you can return any non-electronic products at any time for any reason. If you have any questions on it, feel free to email me.

    I have been considering the Herman Miller Aeron office chair for ages, but I haven’t been able to justify spending the $ yet. One thing that is true for any chair, though, is that you are going to have to sit in it for a few full days before you can tell if it will work for you.

  • jodi August 14, 2011, 9:49 am

    Thanks Morgan!! See you in September, we’ll talk about your upcoming needs on the ship:)

    Jodi Chamberlain

  • Morgan August 14, 2011, 4:05 pm

    Thanks for the recommendation @Josh – sounds like a great chair and we have a Costco trip coming-up so I’ll try to find it while we’re there!

    @Jodi – awesome – see you on the boat!

  • WPHead August 15, 2011, 1:50 pm

    You should look into the Herman Miller Embody chair. I was too looking for a great office chair and although it’s a bit expensive I decided to get it and it’s by far the best office chair I’ve ever used. The chair is absolutely amazing… comfortable, ergonomic (will help your posture a ton), and it looks cool.

    If you order it from Herman Miller it’ll take a few weeks before your get it, so I ordered it from amazon with amazon prime and got it in 2 days 🙂

    Here’s the one I got:

    If you decide to get it, go with the balance seating, really comfortable.

    Here’s a photo of my chair:

    • Morgan August 15, 2011, 2:02 pm

      Thanks for the recommendation @WPHead – I’ll definitely check this out!

  • AndyO August 16, 2011, 9:52 pm

    Another vote for Herman Miller, I have a Aeron and Mirra at the office, and liked them both so much that I bought a Aeron for home.

    • Morgan August 17, 2011, 10:31 am

      Thanks @Andy – the Aeron is REALLY high on my list right now, its expensive but so are back problems right!

  • AndyO August 17, 2011, 9:11 pm

    @Morgan Agreed, it is. I wonder if you can claim the cost (or part of) as a tax deduction? I do here for all my home office equipment, so that netted me a decent chunk of the purchase price back.


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