Thought Dump

Sometimes you need to brainstorm, other times you need to dump. At the moment, there is a lot of minutia trapped between my synapses.

So, I hereby give myself permission to thought dump:

1.) Don’t get Google slapped. The farmer update sort of f—’d me in some ways at Free Mania. Apparently, the site looks like a link farm. After talking to a couple experts, I can see why. Too much aggregated content, no no-follows to hold onto link juice and consistent menus with lots of links down the left. Basically, as the site that looks like it’s setup for SEO, and I got slapped.

I’m working on rectifying the issue, but it sucks because a lot of longtail keywords that were longstanding, vaporized overnight. I’m resilient and stubborn so this is probably an ok combination for motivating me. And the site has a lot of longevity, which helps.

On that note, social is taking over the web. And, that’s a good thing. Future search results are going to be according to location, what your friends like and analytics, not as much about how you’ve constructed the pages (on page factors). I’ve seen this coming for a long time, so old world advertising models that worked in print are going to go away. That’s another story.. another time. But, start thinking about utilizing technology to add value that’s personalized and no longer relying on ad space.

2.) I want emotional intimacy and the excitement of uncertainty. Damn, that’s quite the combination. I have a need for pure, deep connection, yet at the same time I love the art of surprise and meeting new people on a regular basis. Different people bring out different qualities and have something new to share. By agreeing to a relationship with one person, that outgoing part of me dims a little and I become less open and more reliant on a single human being. While I like that at first, it doesn’t feel sustainable. Where does that leave me? Will I feel like this forever?

3.) Intention starts with a list. If I don’t write a list, nothing gets done. I have a system now where I write lists for every one of my projects with a prioritization system. My lists are on standard index cards. And I can look at everything at a glance and tangibly interact this way. I can’t have everything online in calendars; that never works for me. If I write it down, it’s as good as done even if I never read the list again. I suppose it’s a commitment to do something that’s reached the physical world instead of just hamster wheeling in my brain. Try it, it might work for you too!

4.) I’m afraid to talk and to write. I know, I know. If you’ve met me, this is probably a shocker.

What if I say something stupid or can take it back? This post scares me because I’m sharing personal information. I don’t want to alienate anyone or ruin future possibilities with anything. But, I want a voice and I’ve convinced myself that in order to have a voice, I really MUST talk. And what’s more, if I’m telling other women to start talking more, I must lead the charge and do the same (one of my personal initiatives for 2011 is to get more women into tech startups and familiar with choices for investing).

5.) On a less personal note, in the past few weeks, I’ve found a couple of useful WordPress plugins that you probably haven’t heard about.
Front-end editor for last minute edits
Visitor maps and who’s online

6.) The second coming of the Internet is mobility. With the infrastructure of technology bridging with cultural changes, work can and will happen from anywhere. This changes everything. The implications in how technology meets the needs of the online/offline world are huge. I was just talking to a Pilates instructor the other day that wants to teach her students online, remotely (even in their hotel rooms halfway across the world). This is just one example, span that idea over into other areas of your life. And the online, offline bit? Have you seen how many services are trying to get you to have lunch with complete strangers? I love this!

7. ) I think people have formed an attachment to non-attachment (I’m not excluded from this). There’s this fear in the younger generation that caring about anything or anyone too deeply is ultimately painful. Who could blame us? We grew up in an era of insane divorce rates and dehumanizing technology. There are marketing voices screaming at us from all angles to follow rules, shortcuts or other hacks to make other people “like us.” Most of the advice says to act like you don’t care. Wow. That’s bad advice. Eventually, if you act like you don’t care enough, you might actually convince yourself that you don’t. Compassion is taxing. Caring leaves you vulnerable. So what? That’s part of being alive and truly living.

8.) If you get rejected, move on. Ycombintator gets some of the best startup ideas and minds applying every year for small amounts of seed investment and access to a powerful network of entrepreneurs and mentors. This year was especially big because each company chosen will get the initial seed investment plus $150,000 guaranteed when they graduate from the program (read: attend enough dinners). Since then, I’ve noticed other seed investors clamoring on @twitter to get @ycombinator applicant leftovers.

And now, there’s another exclusive community forming. Enter @ycrejects. I think they could have come up with a more clever, less self-depreciating name, but that’s beside the point. There is real value in the community element of collaboration and working with people that are on the same mission as you to get further, faster. These guys have already attracted enough startups to reject the rejects and now there’s also The point is, don’t give up – find another way.


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