On Kafka’s Podcast

Recode’s Peter Kafka was kind enough to invite me on his podcast, “Recode Media with Peter Kafka” to generally chit chat about life, venture capital and media. We reminisced about our days at Forbes. We talked about my life at True Ventures, and how a near death experience changed my life for the better. Oh we discussed my disagreement with John Gruber, though I know it isn’t something you need to think about. But in the end, we talked about my love for technology. Peter thinks I have a radio voice, so might actually contemplate my reviving own podcast ;-), You can listen to Recode Media in the audio player linked below or via iTunesGoogle Play MusicTuneIn and Stitcher.

Why iPhone 7 Changes Camera Industry Forever


My latest for the New Yorker about the mainstreaming of what is generically known as computational photography. This to me is the start of a new phase in photography and what it means. Have a read & tell your friends.

We are splintering what was the “camera” and its functionality—lens, sensors, and processing—into distinct parts, but, instead of lenses and shutters, software and algorithms are becoming the driving force.



Mule Design co-founder, designer, author and all around Internet bad-boy (and a very dear friend) Mike Monterio is having a lot of fun with the phrase “Courage,” which was not-so-ironically used by Apple marketer in chief, Phil Schiller when elaborating why the company got rid of the 3.5 mm audio jack on its iPhone 7, a topic that has been a source of much controversy and consteration online. Mike created a set of images featuring Rosa Parks and Mahatma Gandhi  with Apple’s AirPods (wireless headphones) to highlight the silliness of Apple’s messaging. These three were featured on Apple’s comeback ad-campaign, Think Different. I hope Mike completes the set with all the Think Different advertisements. What Mike is highlighting is that “Courage” for some of us is not getting rid of a headphone jack – that’s just technological evolution to something new, and hopefully better. (PS: Like an idiot, I misidentified Malcolm X as Martin Luther King. My sincere apologies.) 

End of Summer, or is it?


The long Labor Day weekend is the end of summer in the United States. No more wearing whites, no more seersucker and no more warm evenings. Of course, none of that really holds true for this corner of the world that I call home (for now) – San Francisco. June through August coastal climate patterns bring in the fog and keep things relatively cold around here. August is fogust for a reason – it is foggy and cold. It was (relatively speaking) freezing this year – temperature never got above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Average high was 65! By the way in 1942, San Francisco had an August this chilly. It is no surprise that the hometown team – SF Giants got cold during the month as well. Damn shame, because I really like the 2016 version of Giants and want them to do another magical run to the World Series.

Why Amazon hired ex-Top Gear presenters for a show

Amazon launches its vehicles product for research, not yet commerce (link). If you tie this together with Amazon’s recent hire of the ex Top Gear stars (Jeremy Clarkson, et al) for a new automotive show, it is clear something auto-related is afoot in South Lake Union. The next shoe to drop will be either a deeper commerce integration or something which shows their wider ambitions around the vehicle as a market — such as an investment or purchase of a vehicle fleet provider, and we know of one for sale.

In his must read weekly read newsletter on transportation, good friend Reilly Brennan connects the dots between Amazon’s efforts to sell cars and the hiring of ex-Top Gear Stars. Makes perfect sense to me – Jeff Bezos has been pushing commerce+content-advertising strategy for a long time. Amazon is almost always a harbinger of web trends.