Random Episode 11: The Future of Digg, New Favorites, and More

This is a truly random episode of Random. What has Kevin learned in his new role as CEO of Digg? Which new books, people, and websites are we finding interesting? From management lessons to language learning (and a critique of Rosetta Stone), this episode meanders all over the place.

This is also our first sponsored episode — Sonos! It’s quite cool that we’re now sponsored by a company whose products made a cameo as early as episode 2.

Thanks to awesome readers DynastyDC and Ben, here are the show notes and links…

Tim talks about his week in Amsterdam, the Queen’s Day celebration, The Next Web, the status to his upcoming book and DailyBurn’s business exit.

Kevin Rose, Digg Inc. CEO discusses product development, work frustrations, and the new Digg version with Cassandra back-end. The new version includes 3-5 core features, followed by weekly releases.

Show sponsor: Sonos—http://sonos.com/random

• Reference: The Next Web http://thenextweb.com

• Reference: Queens Day http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koninginnedag

• Reference: Tim’s upcoming book http://su.pr/2iZgRr

• Reference: DailyBurn.com Exit http://techcrunch.com/2010/05/20/iac-dailyburn

-Business Exit def. http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/exit.html

Tim’s Recommendations

• Book: How to Break A Terrorist http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_to_Break_a_Terrorist

• Clothing: Cordaround http://www.cordarounds.com/blog

• Person: Nassim Nicholas Taleb http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com

– Taleb’s book: The Black Swan (same link as above)

– Nassim Taleb on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nntaleb

• Website: Livemocha.com- Language learning http://www.livemocha.com

• Product: Pimsleur Direct- Language learning http://www.pimsleurdirect.com

– Turkish: Lonely Planet Phrasebook (Paperback) http://www.amazon.com/Turkish-Lonely-Phrasebook-Arzu-Kurklu/dp/1864503165

• Websites: www.livemocha.com and eduFire.com

Kevin’s Recommendations

Show Sponsor: http://www.sonos.com/random

• Reference: http://cassandra.apache.org

• Reference: Six Apart Co. http://www.sixapart.com

• Reference: Digg iPad App http://about.digg.com/blog/announcing-diggs-iphone-app

• Book: Rework 37 Signals- business minimalist philosophy http://smarterware.org/5373/rework-37signals-recipe-for-running-a-business (includes PDF excerpt)

• Person: Phillip Rosedale- Founder of Second Life, Founder of LoveMachineInc.com http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Rosedale

– LoveMachineInc.com

– employee 2 employee praise http://www.lovemachineinc.com

– Phillip Rosedale on Twitter: http://twitter.com/philiplinden

Philip’s awesome pants: Cordarounds— http://www.cordarounds.com/catalog

• Website: Evernote http://www.evernote.com


• Glenn on tour with Delivering Happiness Book Team http://www.deliveringhappinessbook.com

Elsewhere on the web:

5 Alternatives to Traditional Retirement – US News and World Report


Want to get Random episodes delivered to your iPhone or iPad? Now you can! Just subscribe to the podcast in iTunes (or get the audio-only version here).

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

Leave a Reply

Comment Rules: Remember what Fonzie was like? Cool. That’s how we’re gonna be — cool. Critical is fine, but if you’re rude, we’ll delete your stuff. Please do not put your URL in the comment text and please use your PERSONAL name or initials and not your business name, as the latter comes off like spam. Have fun and thanks for adding to the conversation! (Thanks to Brian Oberkirch for the inspiration.)

151 Replies to “Random Episode 11: The Future of Digg, New Favorites, and More”

  1. Truely random … been hanging for a new random show

    Let me know if you are ever in the philippines, I will buy you a beer.

    Congrats on Daily Burn too … they are quality!

  2. Tim,

    Great to finally hear what Kevin has planned for Digg. I have been following the changes there with interest. Seems like a challenging and interesting time for him.

    Looking forward to the new book too.



  3. Props to Digg for not stagnating with their old business model, and finding ways to evolve into a product that has potential to give them long term sustainability.

    Few companies are capable of pivoting, especially when reaching a critical mass, but Digg managed to. It wasn’t a huge pivot, but a pivot nonetheless, so much respect to them for what they’re about to pull off. All signs point back up for Diggnation.

  4. great new video Tim – really love you guys doing this… RANDOM! 🙂 interesting about digg, thanks for sharing and yeah when is this new book of yours coming out!? 😉

  5. Can’t Wait For The Book To Come Out Tim. I’ve Always Been Interested In Just How Far A Person Can Overcome Their Body’s Limitations. I Do Have A Question Though, If A Person Consumes A Balanced Diet And Takes A Standard Multivitamin Daily, Just How Much Of A Role Do Additional Supplements Play In A Person Day To Day Performance?

    Thank You And Keep Up The Cool Work,

    Edward Henderson 2nd

  6. As soon as you said, “There’s something about those pants, I like those pants,” I said “Gotta be Cordarounds.” Sure enough. Ha!

  7. I really think that it is amazing that Kevin wants to keep digg dynamic. Releasing an update every week and the ‘trains’ plan are both great ways to keep digg new and fresh. It must be tempting to let digg just sit and become more or less static.

    I can’t wait to see what you do with the company.

  8. hahahaha Orange Fest looks like a blast!

    Congrats on the success with the investment and to Kevin, it’s great to see digg’s next direction 🙂

    I just ordered a copy of ReWork now, can’t wait to dig into it and see how it applies with my current work. Thanks for the recommendation.

    Where can I get more information on the love machine code?

  9. Tim, in the name of time management, it’d be great if you’d post a list of the points you guys discuss. That’d save me from having to pay super close attention to the 34 min video.

  10. Good stuff, Tim. Seems like Kevin will never be able to come close to a “4 hour workweek” ever again. 🙂

  11. So true with evernote. I have been using it for almost a year and I love it. I love that it syncs between different devices. So I can work on one document at home, at relatives, at a public terminal, on my iPhone etc.. Really great app probably my favorite iPhone app. Love the what your doing, even though we are in different fields and i work way more than four hours I find inspiration in your blog postings and book. Also just finished “Rework” last week, great book for self employed, very concise.

  12. Rework was awesome!!! Great book! Tim, when are you going to come out with your own iPAD app……. The time management app, or superhuman app, or the dreamline app! You could have your dreamline as a game, or the actual sheets that someone could constantly update and change and keep with them at all times….

    Thanks for doing random episodes. Oh and I know that I cant live without my sonos and music in the bathroom when I am face down in puke!

    Cheers guys, looking forward to meeting you both someday.


  13. Hey Sonos, where can I get a Sonos for less than list price? Want to send me a review unit? (I’m a biz blogger 🙂 I’m really interested in that product…

    Would also love to see some Sonos giveaways!


  14. It’s great how you guys are so relaxed with each other and just having fun. Keep up the laid back, chill vibe. Really brings the viewer into the experience.

    Great job, Glen. Don’t listen to the “low quality” comments. Those people are just so, you know, like, uptight, man.

    I’m so excited to read Superhuman I think my head is going to explode.


    1. Hahaha… forgot to mention that one. An incredible Canadian hip-hop artist (and I usually HATE hip-hop) named K-Os. Check him out.


  15. I love the light teases Tim makes of Kevin 😛 Always the funniest parts of Random!

    I tried out Livemocha myself and I have to say that the actual material in it is as bad as Rosetta Stone and actually uses a very similar lazy template set-up. There were too many holes (no genders/articles to indicate genders with words, course useless to get beyond absolute basics etc.) and the translations (same for all languages) not being tailored to specific cultures could be felt as quite unnatural. It’s an effective business model since all they need is a translator for the content, but it’s going to ultimately hold back the actual learners.

    The website’s main advantage is to find native speakers and to skip the course material entirely and just get their Skype details. That aspect of it is free and definitely recommendable since it’s one of the biggest social networks of language learners (despite wasteful courses).

    I’m also a big fan of Lonely planet’s phrasebooks for the reasons you outlined! I’d recommend people check out the “meetup” website or couchsurfing to find natives and other learners and get off their computer and try to use the language with people in person.

    There’s this temptation to find the “perfect” course to learn a language, but what we really have to do is mix in some studying with actual application. For Tim that’s logically going to happen since he is travelling to the country to use it very soon, but most people who spend years studying will unfortunately end up nowhere and just end up forking out thousands of dollars for new materials. They’d progress a lot faster if they used the languages (by Skype or in person) in conjunction with studies.

    Loved yet another Random episode! When you talk about languages, you always leave it for the last part. I’ll retweet this to fellow language lovers but recommend they start the video there 😛

  16. @Tim,

    It’s probably not a good time to ask considering you are still neck deep finishing your upcoming Superhuman book, but have you considered writing a book on effective foreign language learning some day?

    @ Kevin,

    I can’t wait to see the Digg iPad App. Now I just need to get an iPad…


    I agree there is no “perfect language course”, and in fact, I often recommend that learners stay away from “courses” as teachers, textbooks, and CDs tend to spend too much time trying to teach you “about the language” instead of exposing you to the actual language itself. As you know, the former can be interesting but does little for reaching fluency in a language. Courses do have their place but they are certainly not a requirement, especially in today’s world of podcasts, blogs, IPTV, etc.

  17. I have just started using the Pimsleur tapes to learn Japanese, and having tried numerous exercise books, rosetta stone, etc, these are great. You can do a 30 minute session in the car and pick up an entire new set of vocab and grammar structure. The staged repetition is also extremely helpful to retain learning.

  18. Hey Tim, as always enjoyed the episode! I have tried both RS and LiveMocha, and have to say that I found LM to be a much easier and more effective way to learn a foreign language. I think I WILL look for the Pimsleur CD, have heard great things about that as well (maybe they will have them in the Chinese bookstores here).

    Can you recommend some fave coffeshops, pubs, etc to visit in Amsterdam?

  19. Tim,

    I’m experimenting with Mango Languages to learn Portuguese, and I’m a big fan of their word-by-word translation approach. It is similar to the Lonely Planet phrasebooks you describe in the video and it helps gain immediate insight into the structure of the language.

    I’ve been following your language learning adventures with great interest, and I have a hunch that you might like the Mango Languages approach. Best of all, it’s free to use (all you need is access to a public library in the U.S.).

    On a slightly different note, I’m waiting to read more about your experiences in Turkey, which is where I’m currently based. It’s a great place, and I’m sure you’ll love it!

    Cheers from Istanbul,


  20. Queens Day! A citywide swap meet? How has that not caught on in this country?

    Good to hear what’s going on with Digg and can’t wait for the new book. Have a blast in Turkey.

  21. Cool video as usual. I was also in Amsterdam for Queensday – was Amazing!

    The terrorist book sounds awesome too!

  22. This show makes me feel like I should be buying more Apple products (I don’t have any at the moment).

    Evernote sounds interesting, especially for travel, menus abroad would be a good thing to take note of.

    I still want need a pair of cord rounds, I remember when you wore red ones on a previous episode 🙂

  23. Gods I love these things! Informative from a techie sense, personalized so we see what kind of people you guys really are, and fun. I find myself grinning like an idiot at times and thinking really hard at others. It is this mix, I think, that gets me coming back for more.

    BTW Tim, you should consider putting better text explainations on your flicker shots. I, at least, had a hard time placing the pictures in realtion to the ‘story’ they were telling.

    Kevin, congrats on the promotion (I think…?) One thing I would ask is that if it is not already in the works for Digg is to take into consideration the real marketers who use the site. While it might not be the sole driving force behind much of the traffic, I think it likely makes up a pretty good chunk. We like to use it for headline brainstorming. But we also like to get some link love. Perhaps this is over used by the ‘bad marketers’ so I dunno if there is a fix action for that or not…just a thought.

    Another fun episode guys.

    P.S. Love the cat. Like that famous SNL skit with BOC (but with a twist) “More cat! I want to see More Cat”

  24. Stuff mentioned:

    The Next Web—http://thenextweb.com



    Kevin is CEO of Digg—http://digg.com

    Scalable database system: Cassandra—http://cassandra.apache.org/


    Logitech Squeezebox—http://www.logitech.com/en-roeu/speakers_audio/wireless_music_systems


    Rework by 37Signals—http://37signals.com/rework/

    How to Break a Terrorist by Matthew Alexander—http://howtobreakaterrorist.com/


    Philip Rosedale—lovemachineinc.com



    Philip’s awesome pants: Cordarounds—http://www.cordarounds.com/catalog/

    Nassim Nicholas Taleb—http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com/



    LiveMocha: Communal language learning—http://livemocha.com

    Pimsleur Audio language learning CDs—http://www.pimsleur.com/

    Lonely Planet travel guides and phrasebooks (complement to Pimsleur)—http://www.lonelyplanet.com/

    EduFire: Live video learning—edufire.com

    [I think i got everything…]

  25. Thanks for the video, I enjoyed it. I don’t care for Rosetta Stone. I’ve heard it works for some, but not others. I like Pimsleur’s just for repetitive pronunciation. Studying some vocab and sentence structure seems to work well. I liked your post (a long time ago) about learning language in an hour along with the learning in 3 months.

  26. I love hearing the news on digg and whats in the pipeline for release. Love the Rework suggestion, just finished it and it’s a great read. Black Swan was a tough read on the flip side, and at times it was getting a little to technical for my tastes. Overall it certainly challenged my thinking and gave me a new outlook on large scale events.

  27. Kevin seems a bit flustered and almost uncomfortable in the 2nd half of this episode. Is there any reason for this?

  28. Well, I didn’t watch the vid but I tooked the time to practice the speed reading tips in 4-hour and real all comments in lieu of transcript for vid. Thanks commenters! Well worth the time. PendaGoddess

  29. Tim! I can’t believe that you are learning Turkish – I live in Texas but I’ve studied Turkish now for 2+ years. I fell in love with the country and the language after living there for six and a half months. I still have a lot of friends who live in Istanbul who I could connect you with – who might be able to show you around, give you pointers on using the language, etc. I can also answer any questions you might have about getting around, places to visit, etc. Just email me and I’ll hook you up.

    ?yi ?anslar dostum, görü?ürüz.

  30. I honestly don’t understand Kevin’s decision to move to CEO after being a floater within Digg. Surely maintaining IP and having freedom to maximize revenue outside the office walls is favorable to 80+ hours of stress (regardless of salary increase) per week?

  31. 34 minute video…who has the time for that? Where is the highlights edition or the commuters option to read?

  32. Its great that you are reccomending Sonos. I like it as much as your book! I got one of the very first units ever made almost 5 years ago when I read about it in Popular Science mag. Cant live without it kind of like your advice

  33. Funny, I just bought the rework book this week after buying the 4-hour workweek and getting addicted to reading this kind of literature. Nice show guys, it is really refreshing and makes one feel as if sitting across the room with a coke listening to your short stories an lifestyle tips. Can’t wait for the next show. Please keep it the way it is…

  34. Not a comprehensive summary, but here is a list of some of Tim’s and Kevin’s suggestions from the video (for those too lazy to watch)

    Language Learning

    Pimsler Audio CD’s

    EDU fire

    Evernote – Tim is a sponsor and huge advocate of it’s potential

    Recommended books:

    Black Swan

    How to Break a Terrorist

    Sonos.com – music in your home (sophisticated software/hardware)

    Nassim Taleb

    Twitter – @nnTaleb

    Fooledbyrandomness.com – logical fallacies – his book

    @PhilipLinden – second life creator

    http://www.LoveMachineInc.com – new project

    Employee-to-employee praise

    Looking forward to the new book. As per your suggestion in “Tim Ferriss – SCAM!” i’m now reading Seneca’s “Letters from a Stoic.” Fabulous suggestion!

  35. glad to hear you like k-os! i’ve been listening to him for years now. not sure what album you have there, but my favorite album of his is “joyful rebellion” though they’re all good.

  36. Tim,

    Totally jazzed about evernote and livemocha! I love these episodes man… They are thoroughly enjoyable to listen to as I pound away at my online work.

    Keep em coming…


    Patrick Hitches

  37. For those with too little time to watch the full vid… Has anybody thought about a “light” version that just skims over the subjects? Users can then delve in and grab what they need further down the line.

  38. Tim I saw you mentioned K-Os, even though you usually hate hip hop. I usually hate hip hop too, BUT Jay-Z is a totally different story. Being a business minded, person, do you know his story? And if so, have you found lessons in his lyrics? If not, I will send you a list of lyrics that are geared towards business people to inspire, motivate, and direct. He really is the greatest business man of our generation, save for maybe Steve Jobs, and ahem…Tim Ferriss. No a** kissing there, just speaking the truth.

  39. Do people really not have 30 minutes to spend on something that interests them? That seems a little ridiculous. Break it down and watch 10 minutes a day over three days if you are really that busy. These guys used to try to keep it under 20 minutes, but lots of people requested longer episodes. I guess there really is just no way to please everyone 🙂

  40. Merhaba Tim,

    You will LOVE-LOVE-LOVE Turkey – I spent a couple weeks there in 2005. Mainly the SE Coast from Bodrum to Kusadasi. We traveled by Gulet, so we sailed and swam the turquoise waters everyday — so relaxing & beautiful! Daily we would make trips to visit the sites – I really enjoyed visiting the local people that still live at these archeological sites, like at Zeus Labranda, we had a picnic with a family at the ruins of this ancient spring.

    Spent a few days in Istanbul – which was NOT enough time, I easily could have stayed another 2 weeks in Istanbul alone.

    Enjoy the sites & sounds of Turkey!

    Güle güle


  41. I second the request for the iTunes feed – as a video podcast – please! That would be very convenient. I always find your posts interesting, Tim. Thanks!

  42. Bout time you did a post! You’re looking jacked Tim, guess you’re following your books principles pretty well. =)

  43. Tim you like K-OS! Awesome! He’s very talented and I wish more people would listen to his music. Curious to know why don’t you like hip hop?

    1. Hey Melissa,

      I just dislike most hip hop lyrics, and I think that “artist” is overused for crappy overproduced junk. There are a few gems out there.


  44. Show Sponsor: http://www.sonos.com/random

    Kevin Rose, Digg Inc. CEO discusses product development, work frustrations, and the new Digg version with Cassandra back-end. The new version includes 3-5 core features, followed by weekly releases.

    • Reference: http://cassandra.apache.org/

    • Reference: Six Apart Co. http://www.sixapart.com/

    • Reference: Digg iPad App http://about.digg.com/blog/announcing-diggs-iphone-app

    Kevin’s recommendations

    • Book: Rework 37 Signals- business minimalist philosophy http://smarterware.org/5373/rework-37signals-recipe-for-running-a-business (includes PDF excerpt)

    • Person: Phillip Rosedale- Founder of Second Life, Founder of LoveMachineInc.com http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Rosedale

    – LoveMachineInc.com – employee 2 employee praise http://www.lovemachineinc.com/

    – Phillip Rosedale on Twitter: http://twitter.com/philiplinden

    • Website: Evernote http://www.evernote.com/

  45. Tim,

    I love to *Digg* and I’m a member of your “Four Hour Work Week” tribe. I Love your ideas – I just wonder if your model is suitable for the masses, and if it is sustainable over the long haul?

    Many of my contemporaries (who had govt. or corporate jobs) are now retiring. I, on the other hand, have reinvented myself numerous times, have very colorful stories and songs as result. I’ve hung out on the streets with homeless songwriters, and I’ve rubbed elbows with the elite and have sat in briefing room at the White House. My philosophy has always been “I’d rather enjoy one exquisite piece of Godiva, than acres of Hershey Bars.”

    I’m just now emerging from a sabbatical after loosing my last *job* in traditional media. I’ve spent this past year learning, retooling, renewing, regrouping and strategizing my next tactics to leverage my history, knowledge and relationships to generate new revenues for my next adventures.

    I’ll be doing this as long as my battery is re-chargeable.


    Pam Mark Hall

  46. Video Notes:

    Tim talks about his week in Amsterdam, the Queen’s Day celebration, The Next Web, the status to his upcoming book and DailyBurn’s business exit.

    • Reference: The Next Web http://thenextweb.com/

    • Reference: Queens Day http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koninginnedag

    • Reference: Tim’s upcoming book http://su.pr/2iZgRr

    • Reference: DailyBurn.com Exit http://techcrunch.com/2010/05/20/iac-dailyburn/

    -Business Exit def. http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/exit.html

    Tim’s recommendations

    • Book: How to Break A Terrorist http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_to_Break_a_Terrorist

    • Clothing: Cordaround http://www.cordarounds.com/blog/

    • Person: Nassim Nicholas Taleb http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com/

    – Taleb’s book: The Black Swan (same link as above)

    – Nassim Taleb on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nntaleb

    • Website: Livemocha.com- Language learning http://www.livemocha.com/

    • Product: Pimsleur Direct- Language learning http://www.pimsleurdirect.com/

    – Turkish: Lonely Planet Phrasebook (Paperback) http://www.amazon.com/Turkish-Lonely-Phrasebook-Arzu-Kurklu/dp/1864503165

    • Website: eduFire.com- Language learning http://edufire.com/


    • Glenn on tour with Delivering Happiness Book Team http://www.deliveringhappinessbook.com/

  47. Great random episode! Thanks for posting another one, they are always interesting to watch. Just a quick question – since you have just started having sponsors for the show, what will the sponsoring go towards? Are you guys planning on having any new features (i.e. giveaways, etc) now that you are sponsored?

    1. Hi Daniela,

      First and foremost, we plan on paying Glenn for his filming and editing! Then, we’ll figure out more fun stuff to do 🙂


  48. Love the… intro actually. 4, 7, 11 – hahaha

    Makes for a new idea – to use something creative at the beginning of every YouTube video – I get the feeling it adds a lot of value.

  49. I love the idea of shipping something new every week to boost morale, and to increase innovation on a consistent basis.

    Such an intelligent and fun conversation to listen to and watch. Loving it Tim and Kevin.

    P.S. Would love to see you Tim become the new Digg CEO!

  50. Hey Tim,

    I am still working on learning my second language (English is first). I totally agree with your Rosetta comment. I am basically confused the whole time and feel I would better benefit with some kind of explanation of the conjugation. I have Pimsleur too and like how he explains what the words mean.

    There are some great podcasts too, any recommendations for your audience on this media?

  51. Random is always a pleasure to watch, thanks Tim and Kevin.

    I love the longer format and agree with Aidan about the iTunes feed, that would make work seem to go by much quicker.

    As a hip-hop enthusiast I can pledge that K-OS is something special.

    Can’t wait for Superhuman to drop, best of luck w/ editing.

    Have fun in Turkey!

  52. Isn’t there some Havard Business School startup that does something similar to Livemocha? I remember stumbling across it 1 or 2 years ago, in fact, I think I heard it from you.

    This was a cool random episode. Although I would have enjoyed more of you talking about language learning and sharing a more resources you’ve found helpful.

  53. Tim,

    Love the random episodes. I really like the book/people recommendations you and Kevin share and the “Goth girl with a baseball cap” comment cracked me up! LOL! I also agree with you about Black Swan being a good book to sharpen critical thinking skills.

    I dropped this comment on your Yabusame post/video, but I’m sure you don’t comb those posts for the tidal wave of comments, but I’m curious about the K-Tape you used in the vid and your mention of an tearing your Achilles Tendon. Was it a partial tear?

    I’m a year removed from a complete rupture (that was surgically-repaired 3 days later) and would love to hear any tips on how to push the limits and get back to peak physical performance.

    Keep doing what you’re doing and HURRY UP with that BECOMING SUPERHUMAN book!! 🙂


    1. Hey Josue,

      The K-Tape can be found by searching “kinesio-tape.” It works well and hurts less than tight wraps with normal athletic tape. I had a partial tear.

      Becoming Superhuman will have two full chapters on reversing injuries. It’s coming! 🙂


  54. Here’s my hack for Pimsleur. I used my protools to double the playback speed then put it on my I-pod. So I can review the whole Spanish Level II and III in under two weeks comuting time.Once you’ve heard it at the regular speed the fast playback is good ear training.

  55. Been meaning to try Evernote – that is pretty slick how it converts pictures into text.

    As for Rosetta Stone, I used it for additional study for a foreign language class a few years ago. I found it to be really cheap feeling and outdated.

    Surprised Kevin didn’t [mention] the Dodocase he has for the iPad. They are actually cool guys as well – emailed them regarding some random question with materials and they were more than helpful. They are also on Shopify’s platform – I wonder if they are in the competition.

  56. Regarding the connection between Turkish and Japanese… If you look at a linguistic map of the world, you can see a huge curved swath starting from Turkey in the west and going up through Russia, Mongolia and ending with Korea and Japan in the east. This is the Altaic (some linguists add other stuff as well) group, and it has a lot of common elements such as vowel harmony and so on. Here’s a very brief overview if you’re interested:


  57. I just wanted to add italki.com to the suggested list of language learning websites. There’s a vibrant community of language learners who are interested in helping each other. It’s great for finding friends, language teachers, asking questions and getting corrections on your writing. (And it’s especially good if you’re interested in learning Chinese.)

    In terms of the earlier comment on podcasts — I’m also a big fan of chinesepod.com and popupchinese.com if you’re learning Chinese. I’ve used Pimsleur as well (for Chinese and Japanese), and I think that’s also a good way to start. Of course, you’ve got to eventually put your language skills to the test by actually speaking or chatting with someone (and that’s when you turn to sites like italki).


  58. which scanner is kevin using for evernote? i’m looking for a scanner that can handle a large volume of multipage documents (college notes –> evernote!), and am curious which scanner on the evernote website he found useful (i found them to be underwhelming). thanks!

    1. Hey B,

      I use the Fujitsu ScanSnap and love it. Click on the “Gear” section to see the specific model. I’ve had no trouble with anything up to 10 pages.


  59. Hi Tim,

    I’ve been reading your insights and blog for some time now. When you are in Turkey, if you feel like joining us (me and my friends) for a night in town drop me a line. It’d be a pleasure to meet you.

    We’re also heading windsurfing at the south of Turkey on June 21st if you are still around.


  60. A site that is the originator of employee love is called http://www.GratitudeLog.com Very cool site and social network for just that… sharing the love 🙂

    Great video guys, always good to hear whats new and up and coming.



  61. Here’s an idea: do “random” shows with other cool people you meet. You could record your convos over dinner or whatever whenever Grenn is around.

  62. Tim – how did you find Istanbul? I was there back in April (and stranded due to the ash cloud). A little too touristy for me – did you find any non tourist gems you could share?

    What are your travel plans now? Come to Scotland.

  63. Kevin-Digg needs innovation now. Digg needs you.

    I plan on purchasing an iPad 3G looking forward to the app

  64. I found myself asking the same questions of several people commenting here, some of whom you answered… Man, can we get an overview on this 34 minute wander-fest? I am a HUGE Tim Ferriss supporter. I have bought your book for countless people, and I implement your stuff everywhere. Watching Kevin’s body language and eye movement when he described his situation with Digg was painful.

    I look forward to the time when your new book is published, you are a great writer and a man of great thought.

  65. i see that you mention that berlitz and that you were an adviser of theirs. Its a little unclear as to whether or not you disagree with their methodology for language learning. i just bought one of their books for french, but before i invest time and energy, i thought I’d ask you if are pro or anti berlitz. any help would be great, thanks.

    1. Hi Winston,

      I contracted for them long ago. I do not think their methods are great. Similar to Rosetta Stone. Give Pimsleur and Living Languages a go.


  66. Just to set the record straight:

    Wealthy people do not jump in and out of gold to make a quick buck when the markets tumble. Wealthy people hold gold because they understand how truly fragile the casino really is. Wealthy people understand that Keynesian theories are corruptible at best, and that the Federal Reserve is a man made institution.

    Gold is not a paper or digital asset to be traded on 10, 20, or 30 minute charts.

    Gold is the ultimate hedge (history tells us this). When you have real money, you get scared, and physical gold helps you sleep a little better.

    Who cares what price it’s at today, in the long run, paper is dead….

  67. Hi Tim,

    Great book, great site and inspiring talks.

    One question: you and Kevin speak about a lot of products. Can you clearify if you or Kevin have any financial interest related to the products mentioned? As an angel investor, consultants, what so ever.

    Thanks and good luck,

    Camiel (The Netherlands)

  68. @ Brian, Not to say I know anything about gold but at that point in the video they were talking about the book The Black Swan, which (as reviewed by Chris Anderson on the amazon page) argues

    “The problem, Nassim explains, is that we place too much weight on the odds that past events will repeat (diligently trying to follow the path of the “millionaire next door,” when unrepeatable chance is a better explanation). Instead, the really important events are rare and unpredictable.”

    Irony… Gotta love it.

  69. Another cool language learning site is Smart.fm. I don’t know if they offer Turkish but there are a ton of other languages there. While it may not be the best way to learn grammar, I’ve found it pretty useful in studying and learning vocab

    1. Does anyone have any suggestions of a website platform similar to Smart.fm?

      I used to play the Brainspeed game on a regular basis. Since the website to learn French but since the site has transformed into iKnow all of the great content is now gone!

      Any ideas anyone?

  70. Great episode you guys! Checking out Nassim Taleb now, thanks for the recommendation – very interesting writings.

  71. Hey Tim,

    Another great episode! Sorry to keep drowning you with comments on the new book but you kept mentioning writing and it made me think is there going to be any sort of insight as to what it is going to include? Is it going to basically just talk about pushing your body’s limits or is it going to include more practical topics like different work out regiments and dieting?

    1. Hi Philip,

      Patience, young Jedi 🙂 It’s coming soon! Can’t share much until then….

      Thanks for waiting, and for asking!


  72. Tim,

    I e-mailed Amy about a possible sponsorship for an upcoming episode of Random. Any details about becoming a sponsor that you can provide would be appreciated.


  73. I thought I read or listening to one of your previous blog posts where you mentioned that Pimsleur was a really slow way to learn a language. I think for the Pimsleur French there were 90, 30 minute lessons! I also tried Pimsleur Thai which was equally painful. Pimsleur seems to use only straight memorization and crazy amounts of repetition which was so hard.

    I’m curious to know if Pimsleur have changed their format a bit since those days.

    My favorite language programs were Michel Thomas Spanish & French.

  74. Hey Tim,

    Just recently started reading the 4 hour workweek again. I listened to it on Audible and then had a hardback that I lost. Now I’m reading the revised edition. Great stuff.

    If you’ll notice there are many comments about language. Could you expand a bit on language on this blog? I love languages and learning them and I’d really like to know more of the techniques that you use.

    It seems to me much of language learning is still stuck in the 20th century. I traveled to Germany, Austria and Czech republic last year for a month. I used rosetta stone before I went to learn a bit of German. The problem I had that no one has mentioned is that Rosetta stone doesn’t use practical phrases and words for travelers. It uses phrases that you won’t use most of the time. My favorite is that ‘the Bicycle is Green’. This can be really frustrating like when you are at the train station and trying to order a ticket from the ticket booth. The best free solution that I’ve found is actually youtube. There are so many different language videos that you can easily find what you need and some will explain male/female nouns and grammar. These videos can be played again and again. I memorized German phrase videos and I actually used this 85% of the time when I was over there and 15% for Rosetta stone.

    There are also many different local terms that you get into with Youtube with the native speakers that Langauge programs won’t mention. You won’t get into trouble using “Guten Tag” in Bavaria but the locals will definitely notice.

    Where youtube really shines though, is not only native speakers but also obscure languages. I picked up some Czech phrases and words from a couple of videos that really impressed the locals when I was in Prague. Course I guess anything is better than trying to get them to use English.

    On an unrelated note: What the hell is the green bile-like liquid you’re drinking in the video.

  75. Hey Tim,

    Right after watching the random episode, I went on LiveMocha and have been using it for the last couple of days. Man, is it ever useful. I’ve been trying to learn through audio tapes using Michel Thomas and it’s been good, but had a hard time memorizing due to the volume of information, quick progression and lack of people to train with. LiveMocha is much more practical for us who have to stay at home and learn. So much online support out there. Thanks for sharing this site with me, it will definitely help with our trip to BsAs in August.

    Also, Evernote rocks! been using it since you first mentioned it in one of the earlier episodes of Random.



  76. “Gold is the ultimate hedge (history tells us this). When you have real money, you get scared, and physical gold helps you sleep a little better.”

    Gold and paper money are both symbols.

    You can’t eat symbols–well you can, but they are not very nutritious.

    Kevin seemed stressed in this video. I’m miss fun, innocent, happy Kevin.