Showing posts from 2017

Why do we build sand castles?

When we were kids, we built sand castles on the beach.
We knew it will be destroyed. We knew it's somewhat useless but we loved it.

When we are adults, we still do kind of sand castles.
We spend a lot of time "chilling", checking Facebook, watching series, checking Facebook again, watching TV, playing video games.

Why don't we spend our free time being useful to someone/something, helping others, creating meaningful things?

Voice interfaces and bots are hitting the metadata wall, just like classic search

What is a metadata?
"It describes the types, versions, relationships and other characteristics of digital materials." Wikipedia.

How is it used in search?

Imagine that "shirt A" has the following metadata in an e-commerce website:

Size: S, M, L, XLColor: blackStyle: funnyAvailablity: US, EuropeMaterial: syntheticDesign: street art.

If you search on the e-commerce website search engine:
"street art shirt", and narrow color to black shirts, "shirt A" will pop up.

If you ask this e-commerce website's bot:
"do you have a funny black shirt?" It will pop!

Metadata magic.

Without metadata, search engines can't work, neither than voice search or bots.

If you seek a restaurant serving good fish, with decent veggie options, with a terrace, at 10 km max from where you live, you'll suffer finding it.

Most search engines don't attach quality of a certain category of dishes (here, fish) to a restaurant. Most list veggie restaur…

Kickbox, Adobe's "basic income" to transform people into innvoators

I've attended a Kickbox session at Adobe. I wanted to share some learnings with you.
Why Kickbox?
Transform all Adobe employees into innovators.
Adobe seeks ideas nobody else can do, ideas providing an unfair advantage to Adobe.

Why not just letting employees suggest ideas in an “idea box”?

Because the idea without the "ideaer" is useless. Adobe doesn’t need a database of ideas. It needs innovators driving ideas from a zen statement to a productised feature.
Why do I say it's  like basic income? Because each participant to a Kickbox session receive 1000 dollars to work on its projet. No control on money spending. Adobe give full confidence to its staff. It makes me think of basic income principle!
And the good thing is that as a Kickbox trainee, getting this sum motivates me! I feel I need to make great things in exchange of this generous gift!

Gathering feedback tips
No idea survives the first contact with a customer intact. It’s important to confront ideas to customers, p…

Brands will die if they continue to focus on list browsing and don't embrace conversational interactions

People don't want what they wanted 15 years ago: lists.

People don't like to search, they like to find.
15 years ago, they wanted to find pages. Google solved it. The web was a bunch of walled garden portals. It was hard to just reach a website.
10 years ago, they wanted to find lists of things they are interested in to browse them: flights, clothes, hotel rooms, articles, anything. Tripadvisor, Expedia, Amazon, eBay etc. emerged.
Now people (for now early adopters an in the coming years, everybody) want to find answers to their questions. They don't care lists. They don't want to browse.
Uber (and other taxi apps) got it. You don't care what car, what guy, you want to know how much to go from A to B with a good quality.
Amazon Now got it. You don't want an infinite choice of goods, just a limited set of references, delivered quickly.
TimeToSignOff (a newsletter in France) got it: a limited set of information, high quality, picked with caution.
Tinder got it. Y…

Japan's population to shrink by a third by 2065. Excessive footprint problem: check!

Japan way of life consume energy. Air cond, over packaging, heavy consumption, awesome electric toilets, etc.
But they're country doing the most for the planet.
Being less.

PS: to contradict myself a bit, they are not that bad for the planet: they developed a category of cars, perfect in cities, consuming less gas than classic ones, an they invented Prius, the first successful electric car, and they keep crazy big parks in cities, and they don't experience much pollution peak meaning they found some ways to consume a lot without getting asphyxiated and I'm sure they do tons of things good that I ignore.

Not putting perfume makes you unique

When we smell the perfume of someone we like(d) or love(d), we're happy (or nostalgic, it depends). It's Pavlovian.
Opposite phenomena: When we smell the perfume of someone who made us suffer, we're not happy.
But a person you liked or loved and who did not wear any perfume. You'll never smell it again. It's gone.

I experienced that multitasking was an illusion

At Adobe we had a session consisting in packing meals for starving people.
The office became a big assembly line.

We all had specific tasks we were repeating as fast as we can, optimizing each gesture.
Each time someone started chatting, each time someone started watching something else than his task, he made mistakes.

Worst, each time it took him a couple of seconds to re-focus.

Terrible proof that multitasking is an illusion.

Explorer une fois, pour reconfigurer son cerveau

Aller dans un stade, monter sur scène, aller à 200 km/h, tester des substances interdites (mais pas partout), dormir dans un hôtel de luxe, parler en public, sejourner dans une grande maison, une toute petite chambre, participer a une compétition, méditer, parler à un inconnu, monter un meuble Ikea, faire n’importe quoi de nouveau, se battre (sur un ring)... Le faire une fois reprogramme votre cerveau à jamais. Chaque nouvelle expérience change des connexions neuronales. Pas la peine de répéter l’expérience des dizaines de fois. Une seule suffit.

The taboo of suffering

If you want to lose weight, you must ingest fewer calories than what you burn. It will always imply some forms of suffering. Not eating while you want to. Doing sport and feel your muscle burning and your heat going up.

If you want to progress on anything, you must work instead of scrolling Facebook.

If you want to get more money, you'll need to create your company and work hard or get promotions in your organization. It won't come naturally as everybody wants promotions and not everybody gets it. You'll have to work hard, talk to your boss, stand up. It requires effort, goes outside of your comfort zone.

If you want to do art, you'll work hard! You'll also receive criticism.

As a result, avoiding suffering is nonsense.
Saying it doesn't exist too. It exists.
Embracing it is nonsense too. You don't embrace suffering, except if you're a masochist.
Considering as a parameter might be the right solution. The solution might be in lowering its importance and…

Coming out: I don't like Slack (+ 2 reasons why) - And you?

Yes, I don't like this tool.
It's fashionable, loved by engineers, it has cool features, cool ecosystem, but I hate it because it's non-productive for two reasons:

1) Synchronous written communications with 2+ persons always lead to mess. (even with two persons it's often a mess).
In Slack everybody talk and then you write things about something, and another person asks another question, and you post, and it's a non-sense. It happens all the time in Slack.

Let's be positive and suggest an improvement:
The day they add a notion of thread, I'll open champaign.

2) Searching relevant info in a Channels is like gold washing.
Channels are perfect on paper. But unfortunately, humans are not made of paper.
They talk too much, they like making fun of others, they like playing with GIF, they like debating with enthusiasm of topics they care about. Result: trying to get relevant info from a channel oblige you to do two things: follow conversations live (and stop worki…

Global warming and climate change. Poor naming causes poor reactions.

Global warming is often used to describe the impact of us releasing in the atmosphere too many bad things.
 The word is very bad because and in our everyday life it's not getting warmer. It's getting upset.
It's hard to stand up against something you don't notice much.
People say on TV that if hearth takes 2 more degrees, we'll all have terrible lives. Unfortunately, the world is still amazingly beautiful even if we're dangerously close to this.
Moreover, the word is so general that it does not make us engaged. Global warming is a global problem, not ours.

Climate change is also often used.
And it's very bad too. Indeed, it's weak, vague, intangible, unstoppable.
When I hear we need to fight "climate change" the first thing coming to my mind is "oh looks very big, where do we start, how does it work? Will my poor effort change something?... and something to what?"

Easy to finger point. Now, what would be the right names?
Something ta…

Feeling perfectly safe. Ever experienced? You should. It's beautiful. #Japan

Coming back from Japan, I realised that what I like the most in this country is that I feel safe.
When I'm there, I disconnect a lot of natural protection reflex.
I start being confident on the fact that other humans are...good and don't have bad intentions.
This is a very very agreeable sensation. It's like the final stage of humanity.

I don't check if my phone is still in my pocket every minute.
I don't check who's behind me.
I don't check if my bag zippers are well zipped.
I know I don't have to negotiate any price. The price is the price.
I can let my bag in lockers without being afraid a guy will break the locker and take the stuff.
I can let my shoes without surveillance outside of temples, restaurants.
Mailboxes don't have lockers sometimes.
Bikes have locks, but you don't  have to carry a huge "U" lock, the locks are light.
You can go diving in the sea and let your stuff without surveillance.
And in the countryside, they rarely…

Since you were born, do cars, planes and trains go faster? No!

For 32 years... (my age)

- the train from Paris to my hometown goes the same speed,
- cars speed limits are the same,
- planes speed is around 700/800 km/h,
- only high speed trains are going slightly faster.

Is it serious?

For one generation we did not improved transportation speed and continue to let humanity burn dozens of hours in transport.
I can't believe we face any serious bottlenecks.

So what?

Remembering dreams: a way to add 2 more hours of fun per day (or 6 years of fun per life) !

We sleep and dream hours a day. Usually we sleep around 6 or 7 hours and dream 2 hours a night.

Imagine you remember what you dream about, every day, during the 6 years you spend dreaming in your lifespan (according to Wikipedia, I did not do the math).
Imagine the richness of experience, of leanings, of fun, of thrill!!

Imagine if you can go beyond and control barely what happen during you dream. 2 hours per day of virtual reality...

Our tiny mailbox are anachronistic! Please do something mailbox makers and building owners

We are in 2017.
We already order most of the stuff we don't eat on Amazon and other e-commerce players.
Soon, we'll do the same with what we eat. I already know an early adopter friend doing it.
And our mailboxes are still tiny cubes with a little whole made to put paper.
I guess it's the same format for centuries.

And - for those who live in a flats in France - the mailbox not accessible from DHL, UPS and co. Only La Poste, the formerly state owned postal service has the privilege to enter inside the building where mailboxes are.
Workaround people do: delivering stuff at work.
This is not too bad, except you then have to commute with your stuff (and go dinner with your stuff if you planned to go dinner).

So what we need:
- a bigger mailbox
- a secured one (I'm sure a mailbox stealing will raise with the raise of e-commerce)
- a one accessible from all the delivery vendors, 24/7.
and if possible, let's dream a bit:
- a one composed of several sub-boxes: one for let…

We value what happened but what did not happened has tremendous value too

Hitler was defeated by the Allies. Cesar became the Roman Emperor.  Steve Jobs released the iPhone. You resigned from this job. You participated in this marathon. You successfully run this meeting. You split with this person, kissed this person. 
We care what happened. It makes the History.  It makes the history of our lives. And we forget what did not happen, what was avoided, what would have been disastrous or amazing if... BUT did not happened.
Isn't it equally important?

Avoiding a war, avoiding destabilising a country, avoiding a terrorist attack.The result is that life of people continued as usual.

Avoiding the explosion of a team due to personal conflicts, convincing a person to not quit.
Result is business as usual but nothing happened.

Avoiding dating someone while you’re engaged,  avoiding breaking up with your wife because of a stupid dispute, avoiding being rude with your girl/boyfriend.
Nothing happened in your couple. People praise the longevity of it.

Nothing happe…

Problem is not the huge time spent on mobile & social media, it's that you make NOTHING on it

How many time per day do you spend making things vs consuming things?
On Insta, Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Slack, Outlook, Youtube, we mostly consume. Passively. Tapping, long tapping or double tapping to like, love, thumb up.
What do we make, create? Almost nothing. What do we build? Almost nothing. Yes There are debates about the time spent on phones, online, on social media. I recently posted an article about it.
But maybe the debate is not here. Maybe the right question is time you spend making, creating, building VS consuming. If you spend 98% of your time consuming, you should maybe step back and think a bit about the meaning of our finite life.
Guys spending hours on Facebook defending a cause, raising money, writing amazing stuff should not be put on the same bucket as people spending hours on Facebook watching cat videos.

Layers of truth

When you're a child, you learn you can say 2 kinds of things, true things or lies. Very binary.
When you get older, you learn to not say everything, basically keeping things for you.
And then, you learn the notion of "layers of truth." (I invented this concept, it doesn't' exist).
You learn that lies still exist but that the truth is a very personal idea and has multiple layers depending on your interlocutor.

I know what you think. You think it's just hypocritical, opportunistic and Machiavellian.
That's the opposite. It's extremely altruist and generous.

Throwing what you consider as "truth" to a person not ready to receive it is useless. It will only lead to conflict. She or he won't learn, you won't learn. It is very egoist.

Most of the people in front of you won't be on the same page, have the same perspective, won't have the information you have, the experience you have, won't have the same goal, etc. and you have to…

Uber is showing you YOUR rating. Like it or not?

Those who have seen the Black Mirror episode where all social interactions lead to a rating don't like.

Here is why Uber did this: "Drivers do their best to make Uber enjoyable and safe for their riders, and we expect that riders do the same for drivers. But many riders forget that their driver is also rating them, too, and things like eating in the car, slamming the door, or trying to pile in more people than seatbelts can impact whether it’s a 5-star experience for drivers.
To give riders more visibility into how drivers are rating them, we’re making rider ratings much more accessible in the app. Now, a rider’s rating will be displayed right under their name in the app’s menu. We hope this update will remind riders that mutual respect is an important part of our Community Guidelines."
At least they don't hide the reason why: put pressure on "riders", aka. customers.
Before, customers were the one to serve and vendors …

Extrapolation: the most used and worst way to predict the future

I often hear "look what Gen Y or Z communicate and buy, they'll revolution the consumer world!!" or stats saying "In 2050, following this trend, the number of cars in China will be... the number of people living 100+ years will be..." or headlines saying that "if book/email/hotel/taxi industry continue to decline at such rhythm, it will die in 10 years!" or "Tesla plans to revolution car business, but at this pace, it will only represent 2 percent or car business!"

They all bet on 1 thing VERY often WRONG: linearity. But things are NOT linear most of the time.

Is your behavior linear from your childhood? No! We change, change again, again, and so on.
Are you sentiments evolving linearly? No
Do you buy the same brands as you did 2 years ago? No!
Do you eat the same food? No!
Do you do the same thing after work? No!
Do you do the same thing while commuting? No!
Is your revenue increasing (or decreasing) linearly? No!
Are companies revenues evo…

How many hours do YOU spend on each mobile apps? Time to check as time is precious

How may hours do you spend on your mobile per day? And on your PC/Mac?
What are the top apps you use on your mobile? Your PC/Mac?

I recently installed "time tracking/diet" apps on my devices. I learned a lot of things about me. And changed a lot of things.

Among things I learned:

I usually spent from 3 to 4 hours per day playing with my phone (my new Target is less than 2).Instagram is (I should say was as I change my habits) the top app I used on mobile. More than 1 hour a day... Facebook was close, with about 1 hour per day. Then Whatsapp. (All Facebook apps, crazy), then Gmail (I use if for pro & personal email management).When I work from home, I spend a lot more time in front of my Mac. From 6 when I'm in the office to 10ish hours. Logic, I interact less with humans as I'm alone and I don't commute.On my Mac, Outlook takes me usually 3 hours a day (peak is 6 hours, I hope it's a bug, not sure...). It's the top app/website I use, far from others. …

Instagram, your UX will make people sick of you + how to fix this.

With 1 swipe on Instagram, I see 1 picture. On Twitter, I see 20 posts. On Facebook, I see 6 posts. I love Instagram, sitting in my friend's life, entering in strangers' ones. But life is just too short. The time per picture ratio of Insta is too bad.
The more people will follow other people, the more they will notice. 
How to fix this? 1) Let people see following's post with the view below, already used in the search tab:

2) Algorithm. This move is already initiated. It consists in filtering content, just like in Facebook.

A bit of a bad UX, a primary source of brands' failure they hardly detect

Minor user experience (UX) disappointments can't be surveyed, it talks to the subconscious.  We rarely take conscious decisions due to a bit of a bad user experience. We just unconsciously change our habits, slowly but surely. Brands can hardly measure a primary source of success/failure of their business. They can just spot BIG issues on the experience they provide, the one people explicitly complain about. Brands should be user experience obsessed.
Before I got an iPhone. Fantastic user experience. Then I moved to the Samsung Galaxy for various reasons. Excellent user experience but less good than with the iPhone. What happened? I use it less. Without actually thinking of it, I take fewer pictures, install fewer apps, no longer read my RSS on it. It's just a couple of facts. I can link them to other events like the lack of time, a change in my life priorities but I'm sure UX is critical.
Same for my MacBook.  I moved from an Air (old generation) to the brand new …

Transforming ideas into actionable tasks. The secret recipe to make 100x more things in your life

We all have good ideas. We all think of doing things. We all take resolutions. We are all happy to help. We all want to learn things. We all want thinks.
But we're all absorbed in the life vortex: kids, housekeeping, work, commuting, administrative things, TV, social media, Candy Crush, etc. Result is that we skip things most of the things we think of. We don't renounce, abandon, refuse. We just skip things, we forget them.
We skip, we forget because we're disorganized. 
It's like a car without transmission and gearbox. We have a motor (ideas), wheels (the capacity and envy to act) but a very poor transmission between these 2 things. It's not a question of courage or strength, it's a question of organization and methodology.
My top advice to transform an idea into an action: Note it and make it actionable.
Note: You can note it on an idea paper or a mobile app, but don't trust your capacity to remember things. Note all ideas you have. Actionable: What does mak…

Vegatarism raise will erase homelessness war and poverty

Yes, it seems unlinked but it’s definitely linked. 
If you eat animals, you implicitly consider you (as a human) are superior to them. 
If you stop eating animals voluntarily, not because of religion or medical/health reason, you implicitly consider they’re not (or not that) inferior to humans. You respect them more.
Recognizing that you’re not superior to other animals naturally make you realize you’re not superior to other... humans.  Even if they live in Africa, even if they live in the street, even if you have nothing in common. When you realize all humans and all animals are equal, you stop thinking it's ok to let other humans live on the street, receive missiles for vague reasons or being hungry.

If you want to help random humans living far away from you: If you want to help random humans living closely to you: just give them some money If you want to end poverty and war: vote for people who seek this and/or stand up for it, any way.

Poème - Liberté (empoisonnée) Egalité Fraternité

Inspiration lors de mon voyagen en Inde...
Pauvres d’eux tous ces peuples privés de liberté, NOUS, sommes libres de tout, tout faire, tout dire, tout vivre, Notre vie est la notre, restants seuls maitres à bord, Pas de pression sociale, pas de joug parental,  Ainsi nous sommes comblés, et notre vie déborde, De passion, d’émotion, d’aventure et de liesse, A chaque plaisir sa charge, de plaisir et de “kiff”, Et dire que certains hommes, ne choisissent pas leur femme, A leur charge, la survie des ainés vieillissants, Comptant sur leurs enfants, pour les sustenter, Nous n’avons qu’une vie, il faut en profiter, Nous avons balayé, ces contraintes étouffantes, Notre seul but, défi, assouvir nos désirs, Trouver l’ultime métier, le job de nos rêves, La maison idéalé, des vacances magnifiques, Nous changeons facilement, de vie ou de moitié, Concessions évitées, libertée avant tout, Nous pouvons tous choisir, écoutons notre coeur, Nos désirs sont des ordres, nos caprices légitimes, Nous sommes …

Donations made cool - Give Directly, Tipping Point and soon Facebook

2 initiatives that make donations cooler:

GiveDirectly. 30 dollars per month, 1 dollar per day, you guarantee a basic income for a person in Africa.
Isn't it cool?
I personally feel great to support them. If we all do this, we can change the world.

The Tipping Point. I just discovered them today thanks to a post from David Marcus pointing to a Recode article
They present the donation in a nice way. They don't play on guiltiness. They pitch donations like a startup project. Something cool to change the world.

I still believe donations miss a bit of social flavor (blog post about it) to really explode.
If the donation is made as cool as exposing a cool live on Instagram or logging check-ins and runs, the world will get better.
It might come...  Just heard that Facebook will allow you to raise money and execute donations.

Let's limit the size of countries to 35 million to make people happier?

See the World Happiness Report 2017.
Any common point between the top 10.
They have no more than a dozen of millions of citizens...

4M in NZ, 5M in Finland, Switzerland 8M, Australia 23M, Canada 35M, the biggest.
It makes me think something simple.
Small countries make people's life happier.
They are constantly praised in media, I recently saw Elon Musk praising Norway (fr).
Some think the city is where things will change (fr). I agree and disagree at the same time. A lot of cities are at the same time doing great things for the planet and to offer a great way of life but they also gentrifying, kicking poor outside. So what's the point...

I think it's definitely complicated to make a big country happy. The 14th of the ranking seems to make me lie, it's the USA. But his ranking is due to its richness per capita. And we know most of the countries richness goes to the top 1%. Moreover, the USA is not a country it's a group of states working together. Biggers state is …

We all live in dimensions. Having friends in others makes our life richer.

We live a life. We’re all in a dimension. When we spend time with people on a similar dimension, we comfort us on it.  That’s important to do it. Human is a social animal. When responding time with people on different dimensions, we visit these different dimensions.  This is even more important.  It makes life richer. A lot richer. It’s tasting different lives, diving into them.
It’s also challenge our dimension choice. The “what if I would have done things differently” question comes. This question is disagreeable sometimes because we feel it would have been better than choosing our current dimension.

But isn’t it a good sanity check?

We need the Runkeeper, the Swarm of donations

Donations are not something we expose.
We expose where we work, what we eat, where we run, have drinks, get a massage, practice sport, what we buy, what we celebrate. We expose all the cool things we do. We do this because sharing make our activities more exciting. We share because we want to share our joy because we want to make other discover who we are, get inspired.  We sometimes also share to shine, show off 😃
But we don’t expose when we give to associations, foundations, other people.
What is cooler than giving? What’s more inspirational than giving. Nothing.
My company, Adobe, double of the gift I do. I have to log them on a platform and the double it. As a result, this platform logs my donations. What if this platform were public.  People would get inspired, they would know me better, and we’d all give more together inspiring each other and challenging each other. Because giving would have entered into the cool space.
We need the Runkeeper, the Swarm of foundations.

Only law can change people's habits. Plastic cups example

Imagine someone telling you - plastic cups are forbidden in companies. Yep. Coffee machine works only if you put your mug in. Crazy isn't it? It happened in France. Guess what. After a couple of wtf days, nobody really cares and get the habit to use mugs. Imagine if a law has just "encouraged" this change. People would have thought it was far too hard. Only law can change people's habits. I don't believe people - of course except a small percentage - can put constraints on them for civilization's survival. You?