First, master fundamentals. Then, play infinite games.
— James Stuber

What I write about

I look for interesting topics that are overwhelming. 

Then I spend hundreds of hours making mastery in those topics easy:

  1. I pick a skill I want to be good at.
  2. I research and experiment to uncover the topic's unstated principles. I question assumptions behind its conventional teaching.
  3. I get my hands dirty. Because the "difference between knowledge and wisdom is experience,” and I need experience to teach others.
  4. I release the handbook for free.

Why I don't write books

I'm sometimes asked why I don't publish books or ebooks.

Surprisingly, books are a worse medium for education and discussion:

  • Books become outdated, whereas I can update handbooks yearly.
  • Books lack audio and video, which I've found important for teaching.
  • Books contain boring filler to reach page count requirements.
  • Book excerpts can't be deep-linked. A lack of linking means people don't share and re-reference the book's material.

Goal — Teach well

There are many experts. Few are great teachers. We need more teachers.

A bottleneck to having more is that teaching is not an innate skill. Most experts don't bother getting better.

They think, "I've put my expertise down on paper. Now, my readers can figure out the nuances on their own."

That squanders their expertise.

True teachers provide frameworks for learning how to cook in any situation. They don't just share recipes. 

And they engage readers with narrative, which makes their content universally engaging.

As a result, great teachers can excite you. They inspire further exploration.

Great teachers—not experts—help you attain mastery. Because mastery requires tools over knowledge.

That's why I spend more time appreciating teachers than experts.

And I do so with the open-mindedness that teachers can be everyday bloggers and podcasters. Not just professors.

Podcasters and bloggers are also widely accessible. They're teachers for the masses. That's what I hope to be.

Goal — Be insightful

I categorize teaching into two types:

Type I — Collating, distilling, and articulating thoughts from the zeitgeist.

Type II — Contributing original thoughts back to the zeitgeist.

Teachers and intellectuals mostly produce Type I. That's okay. It's needed to make sense of the world.

But it's the rare Type II that stimulates. It's much more interesting to read.

With every handbook, I try to do both. I recognize they wind up being 90% Type I. That's okay. I need to make sense of a topic for others to master it.

But, what truly excites me is when I share my Type II insights.

Work

Current

I run Bell Curve, a growth agency for tech companies. I was interviewed about it—and my life story—here: Part I and Part II. I also write a growth column for TechCrunch.

Founder

I started NameLayer, a domain name company that sold domains to startups and Fortune 500's. After NameLayer's launch, I wrote the guide that many startups consult when choosing a name. NameLayer was acquired by Techstars.

Engineer

I made Velocity, a popular open source tool used by Samsung, Uber, WhatsApp, and thousands more. I published a book on it through Pearson. I was then awarded the Stripe grant, with which I made Libscore. I was interviewed about it here.

Contact

Please do reach out on Twitter. You'll need to follow me first for me to see your Tweet. (To avoid notifications spam, my settings are tuned to ignore non-followers.)

The best thanks you can give me is sharing my writing with a friend of yours.

Reading is faster than listening. Doing is faster than watching.
— Naval Ravikant