A few weeks back I had coffee with Kalid Azad, who runs Better Explained, a blog and book that focuses on the use of intuition to understand “gnarly” subjects like math and programming. His tagline is “Learn right, not rote”. I love that. Kalid made a point that day that stuck with me. Here it is from a blog post called “Developing Your Intuition for Math”. Our initial exposure to an idea shapes our intuition. And our intuition impacts how much we enjoy a subject. What do I mean? Suppose... Continue Reading
A couple of days ago I held The Art of Explanation, my first book, in my hands for the first time. What a feeling to finally see and feel it in its final form. Overall I'm quite pleased with the design and packaging of the final product. I wanted it to feel consumable, like something you could read on a cross-country flight. I wanted it to look inviting and interesting. I wanted it to be Common Crafty. See what you think... Here's the never-seen-before back cover. The all-important spine... Continue Reading
As I’ve mentioned previously, I have a book coming out in October and it will contain QR codes. The big idea is to give readers of The Art of Explanation an easy way to watch the videos we use as examples in the book. Scan the code with a smartphone --> watch a video. It’s easier than typing a long URL. Of course, we made a video explaining QR codes, if you’d like to learn more. The QR code in the photo above is from a previous draft and not a trackable version. There will be 16 QR... Continue Reading
We're approaching a new phase in getting The Art of Explanation into the world. Now that the writing is 99% done, we need to think about marketing and promotion. Soon I will have a meeting with Wiley (the publisher) and start putting together a marketing plan. In preparation for this phase, I hope to learn as much as I can. I would love your help. If you have written/promoted a book, worked in publishing, marketing, PR, or simply have ideas, I'd love to hear your thoughts. I am a first time... Continue Reading
The march towards publishing The Art of Explanation continues on swimmingly. The publisher recently sent over "page proofs" which are hard copies of the book as it will appear in the real thing. Reviewing the proofs is our last chance to make any corrections and changes before the book gets printed. When I send these puppies back, my work (in writing at least) is pretty much done. Phew. The book comes out in print and ebooks on October 8th. Here are some photos of the proofs... The book has... Continue Reading
Well, The Art of Explanation book is getting a lot more real. A few days ago we finalized the cover for the book: What do you think? If you'd like to track our progress, check out the Art of Explanation website.
Over the past month, Sachi and I have been neck-deep in ideas surrounding explanation, and it has been one of the most creative times in our lives. As you may remember, I'm writing a book called The Art of Explanation that will be out in October of 2012. To make our deadlines with the publisher, we took time this month to focus almost solely on the book - and that we did. I've written and Sachi has edited almost 60,000 words in the last month or so, which is much more than will appear in the... Continue Reading
It’s true. The book is called “The Art of Explanation” and it should hit the shelves in the fall of 2012, published by Wiley & Sons. The Big Idea: The Art of Explanation is built on the very simple idea that explanation is a skill that can be learned and improved. The book is designed to help people rethink how they communicate and learn to package ideas into simple explanations that make people care, whether it’s at home, work or school. Background: For many years, I’ve been a... Continue Reading
I'd like to start with a disclaimer. Darren Barefoot and Julie Szabo, the authors of Friends with Benefits: A Social Media Marketing Handbook, are friends. While I may be biased, knowing them for years also means I know the depth of the their knowledge and experience. And that's the big point of my review of their book - these people know what they're talking about because they live in social media every day and have for years. I've asked myself in the past - What would Darren and Julie do?... Continue Reading
The first is by Antione de Saint ExupÃ©ry, author of The Little Prince and a pioneer in aviation: Perfection is not when there is no more to add, but no more to take away. The second is by William of Occam (1288-1347) You might know the name from Occam's Razor. It is vain to do more with what can be done with less. These quotes mean a lot to me and were found, most recently, at the beginning of Chapter 5 of Tim Ferriss' book The 4-Hour Workweek. More on that later.