On Twitter

I've recently taken to re-using Twitter for the first time in users. I've used twitter before in different venues. I still have a username from somewhere when Twitter first had launched to see if I could get the @johnny or @johnnywu tag name. I could not.

Then I tried picking it up again sometime in college as it caught on as the the go to platform for updates. Then it lost steam in my mind for a long time. More recently during Techstars in NYC Spring 2014, we used/use it heavily for marketing/engagement for customers and followers for our translation and technology platform Localize.

More recently with Twitter's CEO re-shuffling, refocus on core customers, developers, and curation, I figured it might be time to try it out again.

Recently, I am trying to use it primarily as a platform for thoughts, ideas, and a sounding board. By approaching it like this, its changed my view and value of twitter. 

Twitter is great for: 

1) Event based information (breaking news, live events, etc)

2) Filtered opinions (following people you trust and believe in)

3) To me, most importantly, it is a great sounding board for your own current thoughts/musings.

Twitter is like a public ledger, of my thoughts. It forces me to track what I'm thinking, it takes note of what I thought in a time period in my life, and is most importantly public so your thoughts can't be that ridiculous (at least hopefully they'll be somewhat filtered).

So here's to a hopefully bright future and relationship with Twitter, for the long term.

On Reading

The act of reading, or becoming an autodidact seems like one of the strongest indicators of long term growth, success, and intelligence.

It seems in our day and age those that are highly successful, carve out significant amounts of times to read. Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Barack Obama, Tim Ferriss, Ryan Holiday, Maria Papova, Nassim Taleb all seem to be incessant readers.

One of the most common excuses I hear or make to myself, is that we lack the time to read. Reading is a waste of time. I'd like to amend that misconception and say reading is one of the greatest uses of your time.

Learning, reading expands the perception of time. Reading can expand your mind, take your reality to another world, expand the life that you live simply by forcing your brain to think laterally and imagine vertically. Think of the times a story or book has taken you to another time period and you've been lost in its fold and perception of time. 

Reading expands the experience of reality in a way that changes the way you see the world. Reading is like cheating on the test of life, you get to experience, learn from, and steal from the wisdom of generations of writers and people that learned a thing or two in their life. Reading/writing is a means to pass on culture and knowledge as a species to the future generations of humans.

That being said I have a short list of recommendations around how to read more often. They surround approach to reading and getting into the act of reading:

TIP 1: Place books in physical locations you're likely to have some down time at. This could be your bedside table, in your car, in a backpack, or on the couch.

TIP 2: This is stolen from Ryan Holiday, amongst others, ruin the ending. Read the end to understand where the story is trying to go.

TIP 3: Jump around and explore, finishing a book should not be like a test or deadline, read it at the pace you're interested. Start new books as interest arises, but always make sure to come back to books when you're ready

TIP 4: Take notes or ear mark pages you find interesting for future use or even mental cataloguing of interesting facts

TIP 5: Read thematically, it helps fills out your understanding of a specific topic. Sometimes the best books to read in genre come from suggestions or tips in the books you are currently reading.

That's it. Reading should be viewed as a free experience into someone else's world, reading should be about growing as a person, and lastly reading should be about things you enjoy.