Shishir Mehrotra is YouTube’s Vice President of Product. He says he gives this talk to all new YouTube employees. I think it’s interesting to get an “inside” peek like this.
Recently I’ve been musing a little bit about online educations such as Khan Academy and Coursera, without really looking anything up. Why do they exist, how did they start and how do they make money?
In the beginning of the talk, Shishir partly answers my musings. He tells the story about a friend of his, Sal Khan, who in 2008 got some traction with videos he put on YouTube to help out his cousin with math. He went on to participate in the early YouTube partner program and started making money.
He did end up quitting and doing this full time and now his channel reaches about eight million people a month, which to put in perspective, PBS reaches something like a million and half people a month. So I think he is the single biggest educator on the planet right now.
Choosing an audiophile amp and DAC are difficult because audiophiles will tell you a great deal of unscientific wine-tasting descriptions of how each component sounds, then recommend whatever they bought. As soon as you pick one, the same people blame it for any flaw or disappointment you find. “Oh, you aren’t impressed by these expensive headphones? Burn them in for 600 more hours, upgrade that inferior stock cable, and replace that harsh DAC.” It’s exhausting.
When trying to change my email address to one in the form of email@example.com, the Meetup site says
This isn’t a valid email address. Please try again.
Because my email address is perfectly valid, I shoot away en email to their support, asking them to fix the bug. I got this response:
I’m afraid that the Meetup system does not allow for email addresses with the ‘+’ symbol.
These email addresses are not allowed due to privacy and spam reasons.
Asked the support to elaborate on the privacy and spam reasons, I got this response:
While there are no specific reasons to elaborate on, our system automatically prevents any email addresses to register on the site with a plus symbol.
This is done as accounts with plus symbols tend to promote spam on the site and we wish to keep the Member experience as spam free on our site.
In order to have a Meetup account, only email addresses without that symbol in it are allowed.
Okay, I can accept that, their site, their rules. But I do think that the site should not lie to users, saying their email address is invalid. It should instead explain why it was rejected.
Usually, when I encounter this problem, it’s with old systems not getting enough product love. Meetup is the first, modern site that I’ve encountered, that intentionally rejects an email address with plus sign.
I wonder if it do make any difference in the amount of spam on the site, and I wonder if there are other big sites reasoning in the same way.
Vi tar research och analys väldigt seriöst, och vi ser det som grunden till innovation. Varje år investerar vi drygt 1 miljon SEK per anställd på FoU. Det bästa sättet att bygga innovativa produkter är att släppa dem och sedan observera och analysera hur de används. Ta sök till exempel, varje dag rulla över 300 experiment på ca 1% av sökresultaten och bara under 2013 implementerade vi över 890 förbättringar baserat på analys av resultaten.
People wonder why I’m so skeptical of Google and careful not to rely on them for too much. This is why: they’re in this unassailable position of absolute monopoly power for such a massive part of web publishing because too many people aren’t so skeptical.
We live in a fantastic time. We have what those living a century ago could only dream of: unrestricted access to the entire body of human knowledge. Whichever skill you decide to pick up, you will find no shortage of information. There’s no excuse not to learn something.
Apple has shown, by consistent inaction over the last six years, that they simply aren’t interested in putting substantial effort into improving the App Store. It’s just not a priority. They’ll do the bare minimum to keep it working, and not much more. And I think they’re committing a massive long-term strategic error.
For more than 15 years, Brendan fought for openness and freedom on the web, and led many of the people who built that open and free web. This week, in a senseless, vicious convulsion, the web turned on him.
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