Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

“Outcome is a function of process”

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

I was just catching up on Tim Kong's excellent blog, when I read this great quote from Dan Carter: "One thing we talk about over and over with this current All Blacks side is about never focusing on the outcome. We view the outcome as a function of following our processes. ...

Startups and failure

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

(Wynyard Group, an NZ tech high-growth company [or, perhaps, not-so-high growth] just entered voluntary administration. On Twitter, a friend was adamant bad luck had nothing to do with it. Instead of a tweetstorm, here's my response in a vintage retro format known as "a blog post") You can always look back at every ...

Lesson: Moats and Flywheels

Saturday, April 30th, 2016

It's bloody hard to build something new into the world.  Don't let anyone tell you it's easy: there's a lot of unfunded and unrecognised work that you have to do before you can get to the point where fame and/or fortune arrive.  And once you've finished the painful birth of ...

The Best You Can Be

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

I write a short daily series for O'Reilly Media, Four Short Links, which I've done for years.  I recently posted a link to someone's "10 Golden Rules for Becoming a Better Programmer" and said "what are your 10 rules for being better in your field? If you haven’t built a list, then you aren’t ...

Kiwi Startups in Silicon Valley

Monday, January 4th, 2016

I was asked for comment by Bill Bennet from the NZ Herald, for a piece on Kiwi startups moving to Silicon Valley.  He built a nice little article, in which "Torkington says" features heavily.  My policy is that if I email journalists, I'll blog my side of the conversation for transparency's sake. I ...

Some Things Don’t Change

Tuesday, October 20th, 2015

In this internal 1972 DEC memo (PDF) about the PDP-16 re-release, modern tech companies should find plenty of familiar territory: While the PDP-16 has been marginally successful to date, some problems have been noted. 1. Since the product, in its present form, is relatively complex, it is difficult to train salesmen. 2. Since the ...

“Work” continued

Friday, July 10th, 2015

I moderated a panel today at Gather on the topic of "Work".  We had representatives from different types of work: self-employed, salaried employee, startup, and investor. As moderator, my role wasn't to share my opinions. Fortunately, on the Internet I'm also blogger, and my role as a blogger is to share ...

Dear Boosted: Surprise Me and Succeed

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

The NZ Arts Foundation has launched Boosted, a way to crowdfund arts projects. Now, if you're like me, you're probably wondering "don't we already have several ways of doing that? I mean, Kiwi artists have already used Kickstarter and PledgeMe to fund projects." Boosted's key point of difference is ...

Easily Creating Twitter Lists From Lists of Twitter Users

Monday, March 4th, 2013

Kiwi Foo Camp just ended. This year, I collected Twitter handles as part of registration and I wanted to create a Twitter list. Twitter doesn't provide an easy way to do this: you're supposed to visit each person's Twitter page and then add them to the list. Many ...

Copywrongs and Katherine Mansfield

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Katherine Mansfield is New Zealand's literary icon: feminist, bisexual, incredibly gifted, part of the Bloomsbury circle of clever people pushing literary form before she died of tuberculosis. Her short stories are as moving today as they were when she wrote them almost 100 years ago. Her papers, and ...