Kirill Zubovsky: The World of PodcastingJuly 30
Kiril Zubovsky is the founder of SmashNotes, a website that curates highlights from millions of podcasts in the form of Q&As. Be it science, business, startups, education, news, or anything in between, they've got you covered. He also hosts his own podcast called Rad Dad.
In this episode, Kiril shares the insider knowledge he's collected both as a founder in the growing podcast industry and also as a YCombinator alumnus. From life lessons to startup culture, you will leave this one feeling a little wiser and more well-informed about the way our world operates.
(02:38) - What is SmashNotes?
(05:25) - Why podcasting has blown up
(07:07) - Kiril's podcast experience as a host
(10:56) - Is it counter-productive to share show notes?
(12:55) - Out of thousands of podcasts, which is Kiril's favorite?
(14:24) - Short-term future of AI
(18:13) - Biggest life lesson that Kiril has learned from working in YCombinator
(22:38) - What recent piece of information got Kiril excited?
(25:15) - Crazy Wisdom's evolution and expected trajectory
(29:56) - Where does the name 'Crazy Wisdom' come from?
(35:13) - Seeking advice selectively
(38:41) - How can you monetize your podcast?
(43:09) - Remote-work and the upcoming worldwide decentralized networks
Please subscribe to Crazy Wisdom wherever you listen to podcasts, and leave us a rating and review in Apple Podcasts.
For the last couple of years, I've been basically focused on being a home, my family spending time with the kids and that it's being invaluable experience. And if I had on that, we force people to go to office to commute to, you know, spend hours and hours every week outside of the things that makes them happy, pretending that if they show up in the office, it's something they're going to be more productive. This whole, like eight hour work week is back from like Henry Ford's assembly line days. Why we're still doing it, e. If you want to go to the office, go for it. But I think if you could be productive
four hours from your kitchen,
go for it because you'll doom or than somebody who spent 12 hours in the office.
Welcome to the crazy Wisdom podcast.
Today I interviewed Curio Grabowski,
who is the founder of Smash Notes and a former Y Combinator graduate,
and we had a really interesting discussion about podcasting.
He is building this really interesting product,
which essentially let allows you to edit podcasts on,
then create questions around the audio content and so that people can read what the person is telling,
and it's all user generated content,
and it's a really interesting idea.
It's an idea I had for myself,
and then I found him and I was like,
this this is exactly my idea.
Why don't I just use yours?
It's gonna It's gonna make it easier for me and we actually collaborated on.
He invited me to do a guest. Smash Notes Weekly recap of the best podcast episode that I had found, which was Peter Thiel's episode with Eric Weinstein, which was really interesting for me to listen to. And then I created a mix up, their podcast mixed with some one clip of my episode with Anna Gupta. So it's really interesting. This conversation we had was really great. I really enjoyed doing it. Um, and I just want to let you guys know I am starting to take applications for an online course with Anders Jones, who rose $40 million in a series A on We're going to do an online course for startups looking to fundraise for their distributed team s o raising money in order to build its tribute team. That's not all the stuff we're gonna talk about. We're also gonna talk about hypergrowth scale, period of hyper growth for a new organization and how to manage that hasn't started Founder s. So if you'd like more information on that,
please find my blah Get Stuart. All stop dot sub stack dot com. Andi, just sign up for the log. Stewart also got subs stacked dot com. I'll be including more information on how you can imply, uh, so hope you enjoy this episode. Please let me know if you have any thoughts. Have a great day. Welcome to the crazy wisdom podcast. My guest is, kiddo. Schabowski is the founder of Smash Notes, a cool podcast app that allows people to take notes and like headed audio for easy your consumption. Would that be a greater good way to
It’s a way to get millions of interesting points out of podcasts that are locked in the audio. Each podcast contains notes that are set up in a Q&A form so people can target the information that interests them without needing to just listen for the content.
explain it? Well, your folks in check it out on smashing those dot com and decide for themselves. But nationalist is basically a way to get, you know, millions of interesting points out of podcasts that are currently locked in the audio. So you and I going to record this podcast is gonna be a ton of stuff that people are not gonna get to unless to listen to the whole episode and mash notes is, ah, way to take that and segment into Q and A pieces so you can consume podcast in new ways, right? You don't have to read transcripts for an hour. You can just go there and, like in 15 seconds, basically decide what's interesting to you and then, like Conan into that particular point
and also listen to it right there as well, too. Yeah, And R is it s e o searchable. Are you guys being found by Google now?
It's Yeah, I'm still working on it. I'm sole founder right now and basically doing everything from developing to marketing to, you know, design that said our so one thing at a time. But yeah, there's Bean, I think, as if you know, it's been about two months. There's probably, like, 14,000 pages that index right now, and it's growing, and Google indexed yet
and how much of it is being done by a machine and how much of it is being done by hand.
it's all done by hand s oh,
it's probably 80% done by B and 20% done by other people and I'm slowly opening it up Thio more people so everybody can participate.
my long term vision is really where it's a community where all the podcasters participating and,
you can review a little bit of your podcast,
but you can also do the podcast of people you like this way you building that working and start talking about this And,
they're 700,000 podcasts out there.
That's the semi statistics s from recent orders report on this from a few weeks back.
So I think I did the basic calculation.
like 80 years of audio.
if you say, like, a podcast is about an hour along, so that's like, Ah, lifetime off. One person's off audio. We're never gonna listen Joel with that right. But there's so much interesting stuff in there that we can discover. And, um, if you if you ask people like, what would they listen? Thio? There's probably usually, like 10 podcasts that are the same.
Maybe 10 20 right? Like it's like Joe Rogan, Cara Swisher, blah, blah, blah. And then there's a bunch of these things that, like maybe your friend is doing and Maybe he's only getting like 100 downloads per episode, but there's something in there, and that's totally locked in and nobody knows about it, and I really want to bring it out. And, like, have people learn about this.
Conversations in audio seem to go deep into the brain and it seems to be something evolutionary. People also seem to share more in podcasts than they would in other mediums.
One of my theories for why podcasting has blown up over the past few years is because this format of one on one or many more more conversation in audio it seems to go deep into the brain, and it seems to be something that's very evolutionarily old, so that, like writing, is a relatively new invention. But that's how most people find The information on the Internet is through the written word on Now we've got this ability to transmit audio, which seems to go into a very deep circuit in our brains that, you know, maybe, like I imagine, people around a campfire telling stories and singing songs. And it's like like that, you know, it's that deep type of thing that's been happening for maybe millions of years. What do you what do you think?
Right on. And I think people share a lot more on a podcast that they would do another medium. So for two reasons, right? One that's a conversational. So you're more relaxed. You just want to talk to somebody. And Thio. Well, what are we doing? Video. But oftentimes there's no video, right? You're just you're just talking. It's so much easier to actually discuss things you want to talk about. Yeah, this is tens of gems and
that I think also another part of that is some when they're writing. This is what a friend of mine recently said When somebody's writing, they're able to edit that writing. I'm not ableto I you know, I have a little voice in my head that say No, what would be good to say right now and all this thing? But I'm not editing it. And I can totally say something that I would not normally say, right?
Yeah, and it's there forever. I mean, that's I guess, good and bad. But at the same time, if we accept that, it's okay to evolve your logic and opinions, then it's OK. Then you say something today, you totally disagree with us tomorrow. In fact, it's good that you have this trackable media and where you can go back to like, yeah, you know, I thought this, and I think that yeah.
Mmm. And you have a podcast to yourself.
now I have to,
so smash notes in itself is a podcast.
I release an episode.
We just like a voice summary of what's happened that week.
and I'm evolving.
That is just a fun way,
and my audience is now divided.
some people just go and read,
and some people just going listen and that's that's fine.
Like everybody gets their segments and it's it's fun because it's actually computer generated for,
80% of it.
Um um, so you know, it's fairly quick to produce. It's It's even quicker than this episode with you and I and, uh, and my other podcast is called Rad Dad. Show Brad that show dot com, And that's where I started interviewing Dad's about. Usually it's, ah, start up the type of dad's, but not always writing just about their life, their parenting, they work and whatever they have to share. And that really came about because sorry, uh,
I just don't say that came about because I have two kids now there two and four for in half, but you know when we got the first kid has a bunch of resources there. They're always teach you something. I'm like, Um, I think we're very different people, like I don't want everybody to just teach me and tell me how things should be. But I'm very open to listening to how people are doing it so I can decide on my own on. And that was the idea for this podcast. I'm like, I'll just tell you how other people are doing it. You decided on your own. But there's, you know, there's like David Hyde of Maya Hansen, right?
He's a millionaire, but he's got, like, times good stuff to say about parenting. And there's like my friend Mike was just a videographer here in Seattle. But it's also got a lot of stuff to say about parenting a newborn while working at a start up. So, and that's
When writing, people have a point that they want to make and teach their audience. With podcasts, it’s more free flow in sharing a story. It allows people to draw their own conclusions.
that's a really interesting thing about podcasts as well that you bring up because with writing people who write, they usually have appointed mind that they want to teach and they want to share with somebody. So it's almost like they share a prescriptive like this is how you should think about this thing, but with podcast, it's more kind of like free flow. And just like this is my story. So it's Yeah, it seems like it's a story of more format, which allows people to draw their own conclusions rather than being force fed. Their conclusion. Yeah. So where did the idea for smash notes come from?
It's a well,
two thinks so.
When I started my podcast that started interviewing like really interesting people.
One of them was Casper baby pants.
And if you're not pairing that doesn't tell you anything.
but his real name is scarce Baloo.
And he was lead singer for the presidents of the United States.
So a lot of people know the song Peaches all right,
but they don't know who Gaspar Baby Pence's.
And so I interviewed.
he shared a ton of good stuff,
not just about parenting,
but about like his life is a musician how he made decisions,
with you struggle with and I really wanted to share that,
but it was really hard to tell to people like Hago listen to an hour and 1/2 off me, talking to Casper, baby pants. And even if I said let go listen, that minute 42 you know, that was still a lot to ask. So I needed a way to segment this podcast in to share hold a little bit, finding enough now that I build nationals, I haven't had enough time to go like edit my own podcast cause I'm always doing it to other people's, um, but that's where the idea came from because I really wanted to, like, present this information and then the way that it's really easy to share in bed, you know, take that stuff
interesting. Um, and how is the reception been so far? It's
been pretty good.
it's it's early.
It's like said it's only being about two months,
do you know James Bashar from below?
The line parted us.
been the super active users have been basically doing for ah,
older notes for all the recent episodes.
he really got the idea of my cattle.
And some people look at it like, Well, I don't want to share the notes because I want people to listen to podcasts and in reality. You definitely want to share this notes because people come back or, like James, released this interview. Us say hell living, which was almost three hours long. A lot of people look at the podcast and say, Whoa, that's that's a lot I'm not gonna listen to this right. But if they get detailed notes with questions and everything was smashing, this is formatted in Q and A forum. So it's really easy to scan, right? Like,
how is the hill enjoying life in Utah? Well, that's a very direct question, right? Like if you thinking about moving to Utah, there's something for you to consume. So you go right there and like, Oh, cool. I want to listen to that. And all of a sudden, you get all this new listeners who would otherwise just keep your pockets. So, uh, for the power users for using right now, it's actually working quite well. So I'm quite
excited. One of my listeners is deaf, which is interesting because she's deaf so she can't hear. But she wants more. She wants access to Wisconsin, and I don't know how she found my show, and I don't know how she listens to my show, but she asked me to do more transcriptions. And then I was just like I just sent her, uh, smash notes of, uh, just centers match notes, too, because it was interesting. And are you guys thinking of that? Is that like a niche that you're thinking about like deaf people?
I think it's definitely going to make it more available. I am not thinking of it as a specific niche like to going target because you know there's money in there. It's more of like, great. If it's making a podcast more available to people, that's awesome. But it's not just for deaf people, like there are a lot of people who can listen, in fact, that they heard in one podcast, Um, 20% of his audience never listen. But they always come back and visit every episode because they just prefer reading through Ah, through notes. Like my wife, she reads through, you know, half of the podcast cause she's a really creepy reader, but what takes her like five ministry takes me 25. So people a different So it's gonna help some segments to consume this medium in
you. Wait, so you're taking a bunch of notes on podcast. What's your favorite podcast right now?
if you Google from my profile for smashing those you'll see there's,
40 different podcasts.
I definitely like James is below the line.
I do also really like Kara Swisher's Ah,
there's one kind of niche podcast from a while back that I really like.
It's called this one hurt a bit and,
we can attach link to show notes because it's ah,
it's medical questions. But they discussed in very like, ah funny and relaxing way. And I found that when them one of my kids had a fever. And, uh, when you have a first kid, you like, Oh, my God, little bit of fever. I gotta go to the hospital. When you have a second kid you like. Is this really a fever? Like how far can we go? So I started looking around like what's actually a fever,
and I found this one guest. This one heard a bit about fever, you know, and, uh, and this we're smashing was coming because it's like now I can share it with you It says like, Oh, actually, you know, 100 or whatever is not a big deal like don't even call your doctor like the actual future is so much higher than Ah, you think. Then don't worry about it. Anyway, There's a bunch. I'm just Ah, I'm blanking out because there's so many.
I have to listen to my country house of audio every week. There are also pretty bad, but I guess sometimes, you know. But I'm now pretty good about skipping those.
Do you get a sense of how your brain has changed Now that you listen to so many podcasts?
I'm getting better.
It's segments in it.
my goal is really to figure out how it's eventually tice I to do it.
which is really funny on the last week.
Smash knows that was the segment for Microsoft research.
They're now working on a thing called machine Teaching,
So the idea is like before you gave bunch of data to a machine and said,
Here here's like how to process this data right?
But then you'll teach the machine and then you verify,
and eventually second your computer.
You're really good at processing this data?
they're saying Okay, well, you know, if we're ready teaching you, can you just learn your own? And that's like what I think would be really cool for smashing us to an eventual I'll say, Hey, this is how I do it. Can you figure it out on guy? Think when that happens, that's just gonna be awesome. Because then I can just do this for thousands of podcast
s. I think you'd be a really good person. Have a discussion like this with you're listening to Microsoft. Like what you just said. Talk about it and you want to apply I two year to your software. What does it look like in the next 2 to 3 years in terms of a I having an effect on humans ability to learn to build toe create way, talked on Twitter earlier about Debs offs dev up cycle. And you're saying that devil up cycles now, like so easy to do that it's just really easy to focus on the core business. Where is this headed? Next to a 2 to 3 years.
I'm not that deep into I to give you a specific answer to that. I think if you follow opening I, Sam Altman and the team all right, you'll have a really good sense for what's possible. I I may be less like excited about the short term future of a I because I don't think it's just going to reveal it, revolutionize everything. I think it's gonna make small but dramatically like useful improvements in our life. Andi, I sure hope it removes all the mindless tasks out of our life. But I don't like I think we're pretty far away from a I just doing everything on, you know, you're snapping and fingers and just be done. Ah, And then again, if you listen to a long mosque like if if that's possible than we already live in a simulation, Right? Statistically speaking. So I really hope you're not living in a simulation, so thereby it's gonna be a long time.
I'm curious. Why do you Why would you rather not live in a simulation?
I mean, I enjoy the real world.
Inspiration in the real world is the real world. It's just happens to be a simulation to write.
Oh, now we're getting deeper, you know? Part of me wonders like whenever a lot must just simply, like, really silly. And people get angry or like the SEC gets angry if he's just, like, trying to test the boundaries can pinching himself. But I get a really painful way. Like, is this really happening? Like you
like, Is there a way to just change the reality? Uh huh. Interesting. Um, what did you do? I see. With what company?
that was beckoned.
Summer 2012 on.
And that was with scallops.
which was fancy.
description is a marketplace for creative talent,
It was basically a high end.
desk where you could hire freelance designers.
Did you work for you?
We ran that for about three years,
but we realized that marketplace and high ends Ah,
kind of, ah, two ends of a same spectrum. You can't have a marketplace that's high end. You have to basically drive down the prices and make work repeatable so that anyone can do it. Kind of like uber. Right? That's that's a true marketplace.
Interesting. Uh, what was the biggest learning that I mean, that was a good learning right there, but well, what's the biggest learning you learned about life or starting a company from that experience,
Personally, Zubovsky learned how important it is to stick to his core vision. You must be fully committed to what you’re doing because if you aren’t, you won’t be invested as much to selling a product.
there were a lot of learnings for me. Personally, I think and, um, it's to stick to your own core vision. You should listen to Ah, your advisers, investors, whatever. But you have to figure out what you're doing and that in fact, your customers and use that as a getting principle. Because to be honest, when we were pitching on the Demo Day by Combinator, I was not fully on board with what we're pitching. It just seemed like the right thing at the right time. But to me it wasn't and, like maybe some people can do. But when I am not fully committed to what I'm selling, I can't really sell that. No.
that that that rings true for me because I did a very similar thing.
I started a company this kind of a crazy story.
I found an investor,
but in order to invest,
he wanted us to move to India to work directly with the developers.
So ended up moving to India for nine months,
and then we built out this application on.
Then I came back to San Francisco,
but the application we built wasn't It was interesting.
It was cool.
I liked it,
but it wasn't like,
this needs to exist.
I didn't see that.
My my business found my cofounder thought it needed exist,
but I didn't have it. Then I was expected to raise money. That man couldn't do that. So yeah, that that is a very, very
good point. But, you know, I'd recommend everyone to go and try and start a star, but maybe not everyone. But if you feel like that's something you really want to do, like that's probably something you should really d'oh. Even if you feel the first time because the amount of stuff you learned is incredible. No one's ever gonna teach you this much this fast, right? Unless you do it yourself
and it for me. I don't know if it's the same thing for you. It seems like it's the same thing for you because you've now started on another company. It's like once I did that going and back and working for someone else doesn't have the same sort of draw to it because I don't have the same autonomy. What do you think about that
I've done you know,
after we did that,
I did work for someone else and I did some consulting on such And,
I got to say,
I've never been a big fan of working with someone else because it feels like there's a lot of obstacles in the way.
And I'm not particularly functional.
Like Like I said,
I'm basically ah,
for full stock entrepreneur,
I don't find it rewarding to be really deep in a particular area.
I just want to do everything, and it's very hard to find that in the work environment where you can actually do everything, um, so it's almost like it kind of goes against your nature. I'm pretty sure you could find a place or a company where you know you'll be rewarded to do that kind of work, but it's probably very hard.
But eventually, I mean, if this turns into a bigger thing than you will have to essentially delegate it to other people, right?
Uh, yeah, uh, that's you know, that's why it's different. Like making yourself do one thing when you want to do 25 different things at the same time is hard having somebody else help you do. What you trying to do is quite easy, because as long as I can do a good job, I think that's that's awesome, right? I'm happy to have people help me do what I'm doing now, but it's still early,
whereas if you're in a job, then you're doing one thing. You're doing that one individual contributor or managing over and over and over again in your own little sector. Whereas as entrepreneur, you condone, fan out and do a lot of things and then find people who can then help Do you do the things that you don't like doing
And I mean,
that's that's normal,
That's what you're supposed to do,
get a job.
And I think the bigger the company,
they're less you.
The bill is different work you do,
and that's what the company needs.
that's why you get paid a salary and the benefits etcetera.
And there's entrepreneur get paid nothing and a really long time.
but to each their own Ah,
I wouldn't trade this for anything.
Your technical right? Uh, well, yeah. I mean, I got like an engineering degree and then talked myself to code so you can say technical like I'm like, probably not gonna be managing servers. But, you know, we live it like what we're discussing on Twitter. It's 2019 and basically you no longer have to manage Serves, in fact, like the stuff I was still doing and 2012 90% of it I don't have to do anymore. There's service is that can do all that. It's so awesome.
So and the reason I ask that question is, what have you been reading about over the past week that is in science or technology that you got you the most excited?
one thing I reread was that the Stewart Bar feels s say,
we don't sell saddles here.
I know it's not science or technology,
but I find that,
a great piece of writing because it's extremely on point,
and it talks about how the best way to um,
basically a chief product market fit is invent the market,
really are looking at.
But it's also amazing,
If if you can envision something and created and convince people that they've been missing this all along.
That's essentially what they've done with slack.
there's hip chat. You could use hip chat, but, I mean, it was, like, 100 times worse than slack in many ways, but they didn't come out saying we're just hip hop, but better They said no. Look, we are this new platform to work better. You know, bring your team together, et cetera, and, uh,
I found that they're interesting of science and technology. I don't know, man. I honestly I've been just listening to podcasts. A lot of podcasts. Ah, I try to read, and I mean, like, I I usually never finish books unless than pretty sure. Kind of like, you know, zero to want is probably the, uh, the longest book I can get through. Everything else.
I just skim, huh? Yeah, but at last, the lately has been a lot of fun. Just
interested in no podcast about science and technology. We don't have start about scientific technology, but,
I did listen to Bill Nye,
the science guy.
I'm not a fan.
I'm sorry this going on video,
but I having had an engineering degree,
I like science and I want,
deep dive in science and I want science to be a factual,
not kind of sales and marketing.
I think a little bit of that is OK to get people really excited about it.
But I think if you're doing a podcast or writing anything about signs,
it shouldn't have a word.
Maybe in it it should just say this is how things work and this is like three levels of depths that you should get through.
So you may say that that was one that I listened Thio. But I think people love it. And I think it's great, isn't it? Should actually course to science, but it's not like, really the signs. In fact, if you or your listeners know, like, really deep scientific pockets, I'd love to find someone.
Listen to those that would be really interesting. So you were gonna ask me questions about I said that we talked about smash notes and you said you'd asked me some questions about Ah, about what's going on with my podcast? Ah, kind of things like that. What were those?
Well, I was curious, like you're in 70 M episodes now, right? And how How did you grow from day one to now in terms of listening numbers and
Stewart Alsop III confesses that he is pretty bad at marketing because it took him a year for people to start listening. He hired a consultant and he told Alsop the best way to get people to listen to your podcast was to be on other people’s podcast as a way to self-promote.
that was really interesting because I started off just publishing.
Uh and I think I'm pretty bad at marketing because took about a year before anybody started listening.
I was just publishing them.
I first had him on square space and squarespace analysts were really bad on.
Then I switched her lips in and got got me some better analytics,
and so converse.
Very few people were listening.
I was doing interesting interviews and then I started to I actually hired a guy to help me do the podcast to do the marketing for the podcast.
And he's like Consultant Guy and helped other people grow their podcasts.
he said that the best way to grow your podcast would be to go on to other people's shows and so basically cross promote your show and everything like,
and he said that he would organize them.
Turned out he wasn't really organizing them. You just he would cold call a bunch of them and then and then have me do the rest of it work. And I was like Well, why I'm a fan. You, that's, like, didn't make sense. So and and something about that felt kind of ah, disingenuous to it felt like I would get into a trap if I were to do that. And I would just only get like, I didn't want to reach out to other podcasts to go on the other podcasts, only to market man show I I don't know. And so I basically I haven't been focused on marketing, Really Until, uh,
my episode with Capital Gupta and then he shared shared it on his Twitter and his followers are so engaged that it was like, of all the people who shared like it was the highest percentage actually went through and listen to the episode. And then once that happened now I've got a basic subscribers, and it now seems that I've got the basic subscribers kind of fish is growing on its own. Um, and I am I'm getting started to get bigger guests as well. So it is. It is just by the guests. I would love to go another podcast, but it just seemed like a lot of work that I didn't want t o go
another broadcast. Well, what would you want to go on? The to talk about? An under the podcast?
I don't know.
That's the other thing.
Is that you know,
I have a theme that I've been exploring for the past year,
which was the role of stress and the role of stress in the creative process,
which is very interesting.
I can talk about that a long time so I could go on to podcasts that talk about stress.
And I could go,
like psychologies things that could go on creative creativity,
I also look into the intersection of spirituality and technology.
look into kind of like the rise of the Internet and the rise of the Chinese Internet and how they're kind of creating their own second Internet so I could talk about a lot of different things.
But that's one of the issues in my life in general is that I have a difficult time focusing.
it's a really focusing down and narrowing that down and then and then finding people who would want to talk about that. Interesting. I guess I should start. I should start thinking about it. It would be fun. I really like I really like it being interviewed. So,
um Well, here we can talk about this now. I just saw this tweet earlier today. It's like a DHD was invented to basically ah, constrain curious Children
and that that fits my childhood. Yeah, that's like everybody told me I had a problem. And this is a crazy thing. Like like they take away all the physical activity like it's so clear the science behind it is so clear that we are dopamine is regulated by movement. So if you want to get somebody, get a young child, too, to sit still and learn have the move for a long time before you haven't said that. But they've been taking away physical exercise. They've been taking away dance and having people sit Maura longer, longer, and then they're like, Oh, why can't these people focus? It's like the don't means going out of control. They want to move. So it's really interesting.
I just went for a walk before we started recording.
Just process it for that reason because,
I just didn't want t.
It's a standing desk.
I didn't want to just be stand here for a Knauer and like,
not be able to move And,
that goes to another,
like part of,
guests doing your own thing.
You can control your environment.
It blows my mind how many people are still stuck in on in an office.
Even if I were to go get a job for a while, do some consulting like basically not being in the office would be one of the definitive constraints. I'll be so much better on the grass outside, but my lapse I'm doing work them like sitting somewhere in a cubicle. But it's ridiculous. Like I think we as a society, we should really address that and like, But it's it's on everyone to make a call and say, Look, I want this, and I'm going to do it differently, and eventually,
People should establish their own boundaries and say, “This is what I need, and this is what I want.”
eventually people will catch up. That's a key thing. I think in life in general is just establishing your own boundaries and kind of saying like this is what I need. And this is what I want And, um, really making sure that that's a priority.
People may be familiar with the term if they’re involved in the spiritual world. It’s also known as divine madness. It’s an ultimate productivity hack that makes a person question the fundamental nature of reality.
By the way, how did you come up with the name crazy
People may be familiar with the term if they’re involved in the spiritual world. It’s also known as divine madness. It’s an ultimate productivity hack that makes a person question the fundamental nature of reality.
wisdom s Oh,
that's it's a good question.
Can't remember how exactly came up with it,
But I'll tell you the root of it.
There was the first time it was popularized.
A lot of people already know that term if they've been in the spiritual world for a while.
Because there's this guy named William Rinpoche a.
Who is a Tibetan lama who came over from from Tibet on.
He talked about crazy wisdom,
and you wrote a book called Crazy Wisdom.
He wasn't the one who invented the term.
The actual first term comes.
There's a lot of many examples of it.
another word for it is divine madness on.
So it's basically when you start down this path of meditation,
it's not like what people in Silicon Valley kind of shock it up to be. It's like this ultimate productivity hack. It can lead you to some really intense states of mind and intense experiences that really make you question the fundamental nature of reality on and and madness is essentially a it can be a by product, and a lot of people end up going, but it's not. It's not necessarily a bad thing either. I'm not talking about crazy like some people do actually end up in mental health institutes, but that had a lot to do with the initial conditions and their genetics and other things. So if you do have those things and you do start to meditate, it could be it could be It could be a quite a cocktail, but it's not necessarily a bad thing, a dangerous thing. It can also like it, just like on this thing. It's you to places that you're not not expecting. So I wanted to kind of get to that with my show,
which is that it's not. It isn't all fairies and dandelions like like that there is stress. There is difficulty that life itself is inherently difficult on. I'm not gonna sugarcoat it and just gonna be honest about it. So this reminded me of something
that all treated the other day,
how the more truth you discover,
the less you talk about it.
people don't really want to hear your crazy right and ah,
the society in general Loves,
thinks to be mediocre and average and kind of slowly flowed by So you discussed the man crazy with people.
I guess that's that's I'm in Seattle right now,
and I've got,
first of all,
moving from San Francisco to Seattle,
it's kind of Ah, big change for both good and bad. The bad side is that, you know, you miss a lot of friends and like a lot of discussions that inevitably happened some siskel the time and like that, a lot more crazy people. And being crazy is okay, but I've got some friends here. Were okay with that. So, you know, we meet in chat, But the good thing is, your your brain kind of like exhales and relaxes and you can see the world for what it is because it s f it's so focused on. Just, like work,
work, work, work, work, work you until the next company. What's your next thing is like Well, is worth your life. You can do both. It's okay. Get out. Like the ones you like. The dog chasing a bowl over the place, right? Then you're not really thinking and looking around. Um oh, the about the wisdom.
Like one more thing I want to say is when I started doing smash notes in order to kind of replicate San Francisco and like y Combinator experience, I've put together a group of I guess, Ben, I was like, 20 plus people who are No. Some of them are just friends. Some of them are investors. Some of them are exit a startup founders in every week. I share with them my progress. However little or large, it isn't saying, Hey, this is what I've done. This is my questions, right? And every week,
5 to 10 people respond with their advice. Experience? What not? And it's hugely valuable surf. You know, if you're out there doing early stage startup or just working on something that otherwise is considered a little odd, I hardly recommend doing that Just invaluable gives, like your neighbors. And I gotta understand what you're doing. Chances are, unless you maybe, like in San Francisco, all right. But otherwise your neighbors are gonna be in that, and they're just gonna want to go to school and like playing the art, whatever,
right. But so you need this creative outlet where people really understand what your focus is, Um, in a cherry more detail my on the smashing his podcast in one of the coming weeks. But also when people give feedback, it's, ah, it's amazing the drastic difference between and exited entrepreneur giving your feedback and somebody who wants to be kind but not necessary like understands what you're doing. The best feedback comes from people who say they kind of accept that what you're doing, and this is really like the startup mentality versus, like the rest of the world mentality. People don't question whether what you're doing is crazy or ridiculous. That kind of assumed that great. You know, you think that's gonna be reality. Let's assume that reality and giving that reality how can best help you like What can you do to get there,
how you grow it? And that's just session breath of fresh air because, like everyone confined problems by the best advisors, they really find solutions. And they just, like, buy into your vision. And some people just say, Look, I don't think that's the right mission, so I'm not gonna be part of this group. That's fine, right? But the people who really by in like in 20 lines of email they can just amplify your thinking 100 times? Absolutely. Ah, and
that's really good.
And it for me.
I've been struggling with this howto ask specific people for specific advice,
because if I go to somebody who doesn't have domain experience,
then their advice and I might not be valid,
And it's like it's difficult for me to know whether they valid.
like even just the acceptance of advice.
You can't just be kind of blatant about it and just be like,
guy off the street,
what do you think of this startup idea and stuff like that?
And then there's been the sense of like also, as I've got, I've got an idea I'm working on, and, um and and being a little bit of a little bit, kind of not necessarily going out after and asking everybody for advice, because because I'm still in this creation phase, where it's like where it's where it's vulnerable. Ah, and like, I really want to discover this through organic means. And then once I've got it going, then I get advice. Unless I'm asking specific people with something experience. What do you think
that's why I think it's great to have,
a pool of people,
so not everyone is going to respond,
but people can find the bids that resonate with that.
And I mean,
I've got some friends who have been reading every one of my dates but haven't said anything for two months,
and that's fine,
because I'm just gonna keep sending it until something clicks,
when you deal with,
intramural folks that so much easier to get those people on board.
people always want to help, and even if they don't read every one of your dates, but they'll be very happy. Like the reason we started doing James his podcast on smash notes is because he was one of the people I reached out to and say, Hey, can I have you to this? Like, you know, just once in a while, let me know what you think, and then now he's all, like, really excited about
it gets people invested in it. Why do you think that is about separates? It's going so convoluted in general that that it's such a hopeful people want to help because it also seems like there's also a business plus to it as well. About like the the more you help people, the more it comes back to you as well. And it's related to what you know. The yogis called karma as well. It's just like like you get out what you put in. But you can't tie exactly the inputs to the outputs.
I'm gonna try not to call it a San Francisco thing, even though I also want to call it Silicon Valley thing. But in reality that the world is getting more open, it's It's more like the entrepreneurial star of thing. But I think it's because people realize how hard is to do this stuff. And there is no value in the negative, like finding holes in your product thinking whatever is no brainer, anyone can do it. Doing the hard part is like, How do you find something useful? But also, whenever you give somebody feedback, you know you're exercising your own mind, so it's It's a two way street, like if you see a problem, it's like solving a puzzle. You just get exposed to it and you want to help and part you know it's probably like 80 2080% You helping somebody, but 20%. You're also exercising your own hat,
which is a huge part thing I've found about creating content online as well as that. The more I created, the better I get it explaining things in real life. And it seems like it's just like such a good skill to have. The more I'm open, the more I'm expressive the more it's a feedback loop where it's just kind of coming out of me in ways that, like I didn't expect him like, I don't have to try. It's just kind of happening almost too much over Oversharing and stuff
like that. Next thing you know, your YouTube celebrity. Yeah, yeah, last question. Do you? Ah, you think you have monetizing your podcast and turning into, like, a full time gig?
Yeah, I mean, that would that would be amazing if I could do this full time. You know, I'm gonna because it's it's been slower. I'm starting about thinking about about building a business, which which takes the same thing that I'm doing it. My podcast would actually makes me money as well, so But I am actually, If if I were to get a lot more listeners. I just don't think I have enough listeners to start monetizing. It probably could, but, um, I also I also wonder about ads and how much that will take away from what I'm doing. What, your thoughts on it.
Like I said,
We'll top broadcast,
make a killing All right,
Joe Rogan type.
Make a lot of money.
I And if you think outside of podcasts like YouTubers like Easy,
like he puts the video there makes like two million views.
He shares much of links to cameras,
and next thing you know,
it's like tens of thousands of dollars in his bank account, just from people buying stuff. But that has to be a kind of full time business. So I think then you have to approach it as a full time business. But personally, this is where smash notes. It was also that it's like a secondary factor. Ah, a lot of podcasters not getting even the 1000 downloads per episode, but it doesn't mean that's not valuable contact and that you like this example like even y Combinator podcasts, which you think would be super popular, right? Maybe gets, like, $10,000 for episode, right?
Versus Carris treasure. Who gets hundreds of thousands? Maybe, like, a $1,000,000 notes. Um, and, uh, I've got this report from sources. Basically, it's the box media that down the numbers and you know, they're pretty good. Uh uh. But you have to be like this. Popular is Kara Swisher. So my question is like,
how do you give independent podcasters the ability to to monetize? Not that the same level, but at least something. And I've talked to a lot of protesters, though they just want to like 20 bucks, 50 bucks. Whatever. Right? Like something to make you keep going. It's not a full time job for a lot of people, but if you're getting, like, 100 downloads per episode, like, people will be happy to make 100 episodes. Sons,
they got 20 bucks for it. So, um, that's what I'm wondering, Like your focus. Because I think there's also more opportunity to just, like, make it pay for itself a little bit and versus dad and turn it into job like I'm wondering
what's more interesting, and this match might already have that functionality. Or
there's 10 billion different things. I want to say it. I just haven't it? Could it one thing at a time. I'm just That's where, among other things, Yeah, but I think if I can empower, like 700,000 minus 20 podcasters to make 20 bucks, that's kind of valuable. And the pod casting is still so early that there's there's plenty of space stares to grow.
I don't know if you've ever heard, but in China they are. The podcast market is way more mature there, Um, and it's something like a $26 billion market where, uh, where, like people in a lot of it is actually paid paid part podcasting. So people actually charge for a lot of the content, and that's actually very accepted thing there. You know where it's just so immature
I'm not sure if we'll ever get to Paidcontent.
I feel like it's ah,
at least giving all the mediums that are available to us.
It's like very un American thing to do.
but I'm actually not against ads because I think podcasts great about at four ads like,
if you're listening,
I don't even injured even Joe Rogan,
Like what is he gonna advertise?
You're like Tim Ferriss.
I was listening to one upset with Tim Ferriss when he was going on and on about Pelata like her.
Hate right? I did, I guess. But I mean, like, I have felt time like I don't care anymore it like you mean like, please stop talking about Palestine for Grandpa Cast. But, um, But if you're listening to somebody's view on an animal like Civil War, something right like a specific niche podcast and I can show you a link to a book about civil war that you've never heard of. But it's gonna make your smarter. I think that's incredibly valuable. Interesting. And if I can deliver that to, like, thousands of little podcast or 100,000 different podcasts, I think that's in credit. So I think that's where there's a huge opportunity one step at a time.
I wanna ask you one more question about because he's made a really good distinction between San Francisco and Silicon Valley and the startup thing,
A cz well,
and it seems like me back this up with kind of a crazy theory about world history.
first simulation happened in China on.
Then it moves west into India and ended the Middle East,
and then the Europe and then in America.
And then you have from America,
Goes West is again an hour kind of at this Ah,
Zenith Point where it where it's happened in San Francisco,
huge amount of wealth has been created in Silicon Valley Google all these different things that have run the Internet for the entire planet outside of China.
And now it's kind of moving back to China,
but it doesn't seem it seems like the next stage in world history is going to be it.
fundamentally different one.
And it seems gonna be like it's gonna be decentralized and and different nodes in a network basically like what you're saying. Like you're in Seattle. Other people are in other places, and the next step is also remote work distributed work. Are you guys gonna be distributed
by You mean,
how I how I would like to run the company?
Uh I mean,
I think there's value to having an office and being in the office,
and it's certain scale in a certain type of the company.
You should do it.
least looking at my friends like the Web flow auras appear teams right.
They do just fine.
With most employees being remote.
There is an office or I don't know if you know,
um automatic the,
uh, I guess right? The guy's willing Basic. Ah wordpress. They shut down their San Francisco office at some point because so few people were going to it. Yeah, and I think that's the future because, like for the last couple of years, I've been basically focused on being a home, my family spending time with the kids and that it's being invaluable experience. And if I had on that, we force people to go to office to commute to, you know, spend hours and hours every week outside of the things that makes them happy, pretending that if they show up in the office, it's something they're going to be more productive.
This whole, like eight hour work week is back from like Henry Ford assembly line days. Why are we still doing it? E if you want to go to the office, Go for it. But I think if you could be productive in four hours from your kitchen, go for it because you'll do more than somebody who spent 12 hours in the office in the in office environment to its very often where people, you know, hang out in like pizza and play foosball and lovable. And that's not really work. I mean, maybe it's like culture building different free for front house is your idea of culture. Uh, so, um yeah, I would definitely want to be remote.
And, uh, I like what's up here is doing when every quarter they basically fly in the whole team. I think it's maybe it's maybe it's less than I recorded, but basically they flying the whole team, hanging out somewhere for a week. You know, you have to socialize, meet each other and then go back to their lives like That's amazing. That's I think we've We is speaking back to a simulation point of view, right? Like we've, uh, mature to be an intelligence society where you think we should recognize that we should control our own lifes and not the societal norms and We should change it to make it work for us. But if we don't do it like, no one's going to do it for us.
That and that's the That's the point of crazy wisdom is that you kind of have to be crazy to do that a little bit to break society's norms. And, uh, well, but thank you so much for coming on the show. How can people find Maura about you? More bouts? Nationals?
Ah, they confined smash nodes dot com and that will lead to me eventually. Uh, I know if you drop my your own your, ah, uh, show notes. They'll probably find it there, too. I'm not gonna attempt to spell kiddos Belsky on the yeah, on the air, but smashing those dot com is pretty easy.
That's pretty cool. Thank you so much. Hope you guys enjoyed this episode. Just wanna let you know that I released episodes every Monday and Friday before your morning commute. If you have an order, it already please subscribe on iTunes, Spotify, stitcher or any other place that you're listening to this. Um and I just want to let you know again about the online course. If you are interested in finding out more about how to raise money for your distributed team. From Anders Jones, the CEO Facet wealth who's raised $40 million in the series? A. Uh, I'm starting to take applications for that, and more information can be found in my blood. Blogger at Stewart Allsopp dot sub stack dot com That's s t e w a r t a l s o p dot sub stack dot com Hope you have a great day and please let me know your thoughts.