“Everything starts out looking like a toy” (No.2)
A newsletter of small observations affecting the intersection of data and systems.
Welcome! This is my newsletter/musings on a few things. Today’s day of the day is Saturday, coming at you on July 11, 2020.
This Week’s Idea
Slack groups are the new water cooler, especially during COVID. One of the issues with trying to participate (and get value) from many groups is information overload. Kieran Snyder shares one approach in letting go of “reading everything” and builds a practice of focusing on personal interactions. This makes sense on a human level. By identifying the need hidden in a Slack message and giving it light and air (and time), you build relationships, not just resolve notifications. The takeaway? Subscribe less, engage more.
Links to Read and Share
These are links that caught my eye.
1/ Use clever hacks to make analytics more insightful. Sylvain Giuliani uses a Sparkline – a small line chart that shows recent variation – to put a chart right in the middle of a Salesforce object layout. Why should you care? Salesforce doesn’t have a native way to share dynamic information well when it changes over time. You can do this in a dashboard easily, and this solution lets you do it on an account or contact page (see recent activity counts, for example).
2/ Dunbar’s Number, Revisited - Jack Altman points out that the process and tools for communication are a hidden product (or go to market motion) necessary for remote companies.
Dunbar’s number - coined by an anthropologist studying social ties – posits that you can make only a certain number of strong relationships in your “tribe”. With remote companies, the number is certainly smaller than 150.
3/ Inflation is hard to measure when the underlying assumptions are new - You might be familiar with the Big Mac Index, a way to compare the purchasing cost of a McDonald’s hamburger in many different countries, measured in local currency. But what if it’s not possible right now to measure inflation accurately because the inputs have changed so drastically? Trying to understand the cost of a burger is hard when you don’t know how the supply chain for beef is changing based on producer and supplier tradeoffs.
What to do next
Hit reply and let me know if you’ve got links to share, data stories, or want to say hello.
You’re at the end. Thanks for reading! I’m grateful you found this.
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The next big thing always starts out being dismissed as a “toy.” - Chris Dixon
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