Author Archives: Luke

Republic Wireless Moto X Review (and why I’m ditching my flip-phone)

Last year I wrote a post explaining why I do not have a smartphone. In a nutshell, I work in front of a computer all day (am constantly near wifi) and think spending $100/month is insane for something I truly only need for a few specific occasions.

Well, fast forward a year, and I finally made the decision to get a smartphone. It came with quite a bit of consideration around when I would use the device, and whether or not I found value in being constantly connected.

Fortunately, I don’t have to sacrifice a great device for an expensive contract. I just purchased the Moto X with Republic Wireless, and I’ve been amazed with the device as well as the quality of service I’ve received.

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Tips on finding a Marketer for your Startup

Two months ago I started working at YesGraph. It’s a team of 7, and we’re launching our paid tier in the near future.  My role is what I’d classify as a startup marketing role, yet it’s dramatically different than my past role at Boundless (also a marketing role.)

It’s not a difference in company culture, or the fact that YesGraph is a distributed team, but instead it’s based around one important distinction. Product-market fit. 

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The Remote Worker’s Onsite

I’m currently on week #3 of working remotely for YesGraph, and last week I had the opportunity to travel to Palo Alto, and work with fellow remote employees on-site. At first I thought this would throw a wrench in my plan to measure my productivity, but I realized that this is a perfect opportunity to do some benchmarking.

For those of you who haven’t seen my earlier posts:

  1. My plan to track my remote work experience
  2. My first week as a remote worker

An argument from critics of remote work says that remote employees aren’t as productive as people who are on-site. There’s so many variables in making such a statement, but at the very least, I should learn what works for me on a personal basis. This post is a culmination of my learnings.

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Working Remotely: Stats on Week #1

If you didn’t have a chance to read my first post, I’m working remotely for YesGraph, and attempting to document the entire process with data from Rescuetime and Fitbit (as well as keeping detailed logs on what I do during the day.)

I’ve never worked a full-time remote job, so these posts are an attempt to share my learnings. I’m also hoping that by publishing the data, it forces me to develop good habits. Here’s how my first week went, although I started my documentation process on Tuesday.

I’ll first begin by summarizing high-level learnings, and then dive into the specifics later.

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I Started Working Remotely, Track My Progress

Today was my first day working remotely. It’s been a goal of mine for a while to live wherever I want, and not be tied to an office. I expected this to happen much later in my career, so it’s a pleasant surprise to say the least.

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Tracking A/B tests in Mixpanel using url parameters (Rails Application)

Update January 2015: I wrote a 3,000 word introduction to a/b testing, and I’d love it if you checked it out!

So you have a Rails application, and you’re trying to setup A/B tests. You probably also aren’t in the mood to pay for Optimizely  because it makes more sense to roll your own. I understand, yet you also want to be able to track the results of these A/B tests in Mixpanel (specifically in a funnel.)

You’re reading the right article – I’m going to dive in and show you a super-simple way to set this up.

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Thoughts on Remote Work (Before Reading ‘Remote’)

Today when I get home from work, I’ll have the new 37 signals book “Remote” sitting in my mailbox. This is a book I’m pretty excited about – one of my  career goals is to work remotely, so naturally it’s something I’ve thought quite a bit about.

I thought it would be cool to write a blog post about my thoughts before reading the book (and especially after reading this article), and another post afterwards. Then I will be able to see what opinions changed (or stayed the same.)

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Marketing your Tech Company is getting SaaSy: Here’s how to avoid problems

It seems like there’s been a large increase of software over the past year  to help online marketers. There’s software to help avoid churn in billing, there’s software to help with lifecycle emails, and plenty of options for everything in between.

I’m really digging this – there’s more tools to help marketers understand customers, and reach them at optimal points while using the software. While this is all hunky-dory, there’s some potential problems that should be avoided.

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What A/B testing solution should I use for my Rails App?

Update Jan 2015: I wrote a monster guide on getting started with A/B testing, which you may find useful.

So you probably visited this page in your quest for an A/B testing solution for your Rails application. There’s a plethora of options, but the bottom line you are probably asking is: Should I roll my own/use an existing gem? Or should I use third-party software like Optimizely or Visual Website Optimizer?

I’ve used both, and in the rest of this article I’m going to chat about what works and what doesn’t. This is surprisingly a complex question.

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Crowdfunding for Startups (a normal person’s outlook)

Today the “ban” on general solicitation was lifted, enabling startups to publicly advertise that they were fundraising at a certain valuation. It’s the first time this has happened in 80 years, and I can’t help but be optimistic about what this means for early stage companies. It’s weird seeing people like Tim Ferris publicly encouraging people to invest….but it’s the future.

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