The coming ubiquity
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
4h ago
The fuss about AI might be mis-focused. It’s easy to point to a computer-created essay, song or illustration and find the defects or errors. Given hard work by 1,000 trained people, it’s likely that a human could make something more useful or inspired than a computer could. But the real impact of AI isn’t going to be that it regularly and consistently does far better than the best human effort. The impact will be that it is widespread, cheap and always there. Search for anything and the Wikipedia page will ‘write itself’ just for you. Brainstorm 12 variations of a solution to any problem you’r ..read more
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Hobson’s choice
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
1d ago
…is no choice at all. The stable owner gets to pick which horse you get. Take it or leave it. Some people prefer this. It means that we’re off the hook and not responsible. It relieves us of the emotional labor of choice. Let someone else worry about it… And so we give up our agency and our freedom, simply to avoid responsibility. The thing is, there is still a choice: The choice of whether or not to go into the stable in the first place. Every time we choose a job, cast a ballot (or choose not to), or select a path, we’re making a choice. What happens after that is still our responsibility ..read more
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Pay what you want
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
2d ago
It’s a fascinating payment model. For digital goods and other transactions where the marginal cost of one more sale approaches zero, “pay what you want” exposes how complicated the story we tell about money can be. When we add in the charity component, it becomes even more layered. The Best of Akimbo (volume 1) is now available as a pay-what-you-want download. 100% of what you pay is a donation that goes directly to charity: water. The details are all here. There are more than five years worth of weekly episodes of my Akimbo podcast now available, and my producer Alex DiPalma and I have put to ..read more
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“What do you do around here?”
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
4d ago
There are lots of useful, honest answers. Some might include: I do what I’m told I challenge the status quo I show up on time I solve complicate problems I absorb nonsense and create calm for others I raise our standards I help people feel seen I’m steady I don’t cause trouble I bring energy I lead the way I turn mountains into molehills People like me The ones that aren’t helpful are things like: I’m just passing through I give people a hard time I’m a bully I make mountains out of molehills ..read more
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Culture, care and typography
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
5d ago
I’ve been fascinated by the way we set type since I did my first packaging forty years ago. It’s a combination of tech, art, systems, culture and most of all, deciding to put in the effort to get it right. [This is a long post, it would have been a podcast, but it doesn’t really lend itself to audio.] When airplanes first started flying passengers, there was a need for labels. Labels for passengers and pilots. WEAR SEATBELT WHEN SEATED. Why is it in all caps? My guess is that at the dawn of aviation, the machine that made the little metal signs only had the capacity to easily handle 26 letters ..read more
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The lonely zone
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
6d ago
For many, the goal is to be the deciding vote, the donation that gets a cause over the goal, the person who counts. And often, we enjoy piling on. Once the cause or fashion or tech is clearly working, it’s easy and fun to say “me too.” More rare, more vulnerable and more important is to decide to show up in the lonely zone. When it might not work. When the originator really needs your support. When speaking up, donating or simply showing up feels like a risk or a waste ..read more
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Overconfidence and AI
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
1w ago
Human beings are often more effective when we’re a bit self-effacing. “I think,” “Perhaps,” or “I might be missing something, but…” are fine ways to give our assertions a chance to be considered. The solar-powered LED calculator we used in school did no such thing. 6 x 7 is 42, no ifs, ands or buts. Part of the magic of Google search was that it was not only cocky, it was often correct. The combination of its confidence and its utility made it feel like a miracle. Of course, Google was never completely correct. It rarely found exactly the right page every time. That was left to us. But the aur ..read more
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Bitterness is consistent
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
1w ago
It will never let you down. Bitterness is never-ending, impenetrable and refuses to negotiate. If you give it a chance, it will persist. It lacks nuance or surprise. It’s simply a wall you can lean against, whenever you choose. Consistency is all it has to offer, actually ..read more
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Amazon Smile gets a frown
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
1w ago
I’m pretty sure how the first meetings went almost a decade ago: “Well, we’re paying our affiliates 5% for referrals. If we pay charities a tenth of that and call it a donation, it’ll be great PR and we’ll also make a profit on every sale because we won’t need to pay a full commission…” Amazon didn’t invent the online affiliate concept, but the company certainly turned it into a significant engine for growth. If a consumer bought a $100 item that someone in their program linked to, they would pay the referrer about $5. That meant they had little chance of actually turning a profit on that sale ..read more
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Typist/Hypist
Seth Godin
by Seth Godin
1w ago
Not that long ago, you could make a living as a typist. Technology keeps changing the world. Now, you’re more likely to find a job doing something that seems a lot less mechanized. But that too will be programmatic soon enough. PS here’s an important new book about perfectionism ..read more
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