Monthly Archives: July 2006

Recipezaar in the Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal ran an article (article is behind a pay wall, so no link) today on online recipe sites, which featured Recipezaar, AllRecipes and Snacksby (where’d they find that one?!). You always hear people complain that the press does a bad job of taking your words and putting them in print, and we’re no exception. The article highlights AllRecipes eventual 60,000 recipes but ignores that Recipezaar has 170,000 today and 50,000 photos. Or that AllRecipes recipes are 95% user-submitted (why only 95%?) but didn’t mention that 100% of ours are user-submitted, or that they go up instantly, not after 18+ months. But at least the recipe they picked from Recipezaar, Baklava Salmon, was their favorite. And they linked to our beta site! And, to the writer’s credit, they did hold off on the article several weeks until our beta went public, so Thank You! :)

It’s great to be in the Wall Street Journal; we can check that one off our list. But their readership is not our target market. Instead of getting more traffic from people who want to eat, I imagine we’ll get inundated by calls from VCs, SEO companies, ad sales companies and marketing companies again.

Vacation Day

I took a “vacation day” today, layed in the hammock all afternoon catching up on podcasts on my iPod. I’m one of those people who has a tough time relaxing, I find it difficult to do nothing productive. Even as a kid, I couldn’t just watch TV, I had to read a magazine or a book at the same time to salvage the wasted time. It’s sick, really. And it took me a good hour in the hammock to stop thinking “Ok, go get something done.” But I persevered, and it worked. I relaxed. (Best tagline ever: Hammocks.com‘s “Accomplish Nothing…“)

The dogs stayed outside with me all day, Illy even fell asleep next to the hammock, in between sprints to the road to chase cars away. Ouzo occassionally dropped the tennis ball for me to throw with the ChuckIt but even he mostly layed in the shade, which, for those of you who know Ouzo, is out of character. It’s been hot here in Seattle the last few days with temperatures in the 90s. But it’s great in the shade with a nice breeze. I love Seattle weather! By 4pm I had my all-time favorite beer, a Fuller’s ESB that our friends that were over for dinner last night left in the fridge. Good friends leave good beer in your fridge.

Floyd Landis wins the Tour de France!

Congratulations to Floyd. I didn’t think he’d do it at the beginning, and was sure he wouldn’t after he lost 8 minutes in the Alps. But his comeback was one of the great moments in sports. And to think, just when the French finally get rid of an American winning the Tour every year, another one comes along and wins it. That’s what they get for bashing Lance and really bashing Floyd this year.
I really thought Hincapie would do well this year, but he was over an hour behind Landis. Leipheimer didn’t do much better. The other Americans weren’t even relevant. Now Floyd goes for hip-replacement surgery, but I won’t say that he won’t win it next year….

Tour de France: Floyd unblows it!

WOW! The next day, Floyd Landis takes off by himself at the beginning of the tough mountain stage and held it til the end, winning the stage and gaining back all but 30 seconds of his lost time. Floyd was not very strong, I didn’t think, the whole tour but what he did was what legends are made of!! I couldn’t imagine anything like this happening, but I’m glad I witnessed it. Lance was great, all around, but he never did anything so risky and so courageous as what Floyd did today. Amazing. Even the old time Tour director said it was the best stage he’s ever seen in all the Tour de France.
And he’s really matured, after his terrible day, he accepted full responsibility for his failings. He didn’t blame his team, he didn’t blame other riders, he didn’t blame mechanical problems. It takes a lot to admit your flaws are your fault. Hats off, Floyd.

Tour de France Update: Floyd blows it

Floyd Landis, who got the yellow jersey, lost it and regained it lost it again in a lousy performance. He lost 8 minutes on the final climb of the day yesterday while Carlos Sastre and Oscar Perreiro just flew up the mountain. Perreiro regained the yellow jersey and I can’t see him losing 8 minutes today or in Saturday’s time trial. There won’t be any Americans on the podium this year, I don’t think. Perreiro, Sastre and Menchov are the likely 1, 2 and 3.
How much a good team around you matters was demonstrated well by Floyd’s Phonak team — they disintegrated on almost every climb this year leaving Floyd all alone. You don’t win a Tour de France without a strong team.

Tour de France update

After an almost completely disastrous day in the time trial on Saturday, all the Americans except for Floyd Landis put themselves out of contention. And Bobby Julich put himself in the hospital after crashing in a roundabout and breaking his wrist. Floyd Landis finished a minute, and second place, behind the winner and Hincapie stayed within a minute or so of him. But Leipheimer lost over 5 minutes!

In the second day of the mountains yesterday, Floyd Landis finished third and took the yellow jersey by 8 seconds after dropping all the strongest rivals, including Kloden. Surprisingly, Leipheimer stayed with him and is now the second highest-placed American, but still 5 minutes back. It looks like Landis, Menchov and Cadel Evans are the most likely podium places, but it’s still a long way to Paris.

The most enjoyable part of the day yesterday was watching Iban Mayo, probably the least amicable person in cycling today, crack and fall way off the back on the first climb of the day. Adding to the fun, he got angry at the cameraman following him on the motorcycle videotaping his pathetic performance. The cameraman was following the team leader who is supposed to be a contender for the race win and he’s the caboose on the train. That’s big news Iban; if you don’t want a cameraman following you, don’t ride in the Tour de France. He later abandoned the race altogether. This guy used to be a top rider, what happened to him?!

Social Buzz-working

I don’t get the Social Networking buzz.

My Space is “officially” more signficant than Yahoo. There is competition in the social network space for DOGS. Now add network for my hoopty, one for sports that no one watches, followed closely by a social network for social networkers and software so any once can roll your own social network site.

I don’t deny that My Space is a great way for the kids to find dates and efficiently keep the peer pressure machine churning away. And, sure, hockey/car/dog fans deserve a place to swap stories, but aren’t we really just taking about making acquaintances, something that happens all the time in the real world without millions in funding, patents, or advertising involved.

Of course, there will be some people who get totally into one or another of these sites and make a permanent home, but if you don’t stay active, the masses pass you by, and you simply can’t stay active in many. (If only I had a dollar for every abandoned tribe, friendster, my space, msn spaces, livejournal, blogger profile….) They are only so many minutes in the day, and only so many times you want to retype the same basic stuff. Young people have time to maintain different identities and levels of friendship, but for the rest of us, one identity is hard enough.

As for the brilliant software concept: I just don’t see it as anything special (certainly not worth funding or buying). This is still basically e-mail with photos, just not in the convenience of my central inbox or using my handy address book.

Mark Cuban captures it well in his post on how boring the internet really is:

And come on now, blogging ? If GeoCities had created a script to add dated journal entries and gotten rid of those ugly floating ads that made everyone hate it, would this be posted on GeoBlogMaverick ? And my goodness, if GeoCities had the foresite to add the Myspace concept of friends instead of rings and host people’s media files, would we call it a revolutionary social network ? Or just a webpage and file hosting service ? Which is exactly what Myspace and other social networks are.

What bubble?

Millions are to be grabbed out here and your only competition is idiots. Don’t let this get around.”
– telegram from journalist-turned-screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz to Ben Hecht’s New Yorker office shortly after his arrival in L.A. (via Slate

Tour de France update

The top European contender for the win, Valverde, crashed yesterday in Stage 3 and broke a collarbone and is out of the race. American Fred Rodriguez crashed too and has abandoned with the same injury.
This leaves Iban Mayo as the top contender against the Americans Hincapie, Landis and Leipheimer. It’s a long race yet, but I’m starting to imagine Americans taking 1, 2 and 3!

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