Go to San Francisco #867

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chadwhitacre opened this Issue Oct 30, 2016 · 166 comments

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 30, 2016

I spent 12 days in San Francisco in early November, 2016. I met a lot of people in a lot of different contexts, and started to rebuild some awareness of Gratipay as a going concern. I came up hard against the difficulty in what we're trying to accomplish with funding open source: companies have precious little incentive to pay for value they already possess.

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Expense Report

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Week 1

Date Day Write-up
11-07 Monday Y Combinator
11-08 Tuesday Sudo Room
11-09 Wednesday Amazon Loft w/ @shurcooL
11-10 Thursday Lunch at HackerOne
11-11 Friday Lunch at the Internet Archive
11-12 Saturday Meeting with @nobodxbodon

Week 2

Date Day Write-up
11-13 Sunday Hike!
11-14 Monday LAUNCH Scale
11-15 Tuesday LAUNCH Scale p. 2, Jareau, Sheel
11-16 Wednesday Shareable, Nadia
11-17 Thursday Mazarine, J.C. & Aza, SELC, Cameron
11-18 Friday Loft, then Chris Messina, but not Pia—nor Cavalier :)

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I had a really good time during All Things Open (#757) getting to hack a lot and then going out to interact with people relevant to Gratipay. Under #836 we've been talking about stopping by YC even if we don't get an invite. Of course there's plenty of other networking to do out there as well even if we never make it to YC.

I'm looking at a trip November 7—19. Right now flights are running just under $600, and I'm finding Airbnbs in the $500 to $1,200 range (depending on how many roommates).

My experience in Raleigh this past week indicates to me that two weeks in San Francisco could be amazingly productive. My tendency is to think that a private room actually in SF would provide the most valuable combination of space to hack and proximity for networking. I've reached out to see about finding a place to stay apart from Airbnb. Assuming that doesn't come through, I think a budget of $2,400 would cover a 12 day trip.

We have about $7,000 in the bank right now and are accumulating about $182/mo (780 - 562 - 36).

We'll need to act pretty quick to lock in the flight and room. Prices could go up drastically tomorrow, for all I know.

Anyone have a strong sense one way or another on this? I just really want to get this candle lit again! 🕯

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Go for it :)

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rohitpaulk commented Oct 30, 2016

Go for it :)

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Anyone have a strong sense one way or another on this?

Esp. @kaguillera. We are cofounders!

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 30, 2016

Anyone have a strong sense one way or another on this?

Esp. @kaguillera. We are cofounders!

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Or maybe we should spend the money on a video. 😳

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 30, 2016

Or maybe we should spend the money on a video. 😳

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Reticketed #870.

Prices could go up drastically tomorrow, for all I know.

In fact, they dropped 22%, from $580 to $450(!).

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 30, 2016

Reticketed #870.

Prices could go up drastically tomorrow, for all I know.

In fact, they dropped 22%, from $580 to $450(!).

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Back up to $580. :-/

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

Back up to $580. :-/

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From private email:

Something to be aware of, in case you don't already know it, Amazon has a really cool loft in downtown SF. https://aws.amazon.com/start-ups/loft/sf-loft/ It's a co-working space sponsored by them. It's free to use, you just need to sign up (entering your personal information) and get a badge. Other people go there to hack on stuff, so it's a fun place to co-work from.

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

From private email:

Something to be aware of, in case you don't already know it, Amazon has a really cool loft in downtown SF. https://aws.amazon.com/start-ups/loft/sf-loft/ It's a co-working space sponsored by them. It's free to use, you just need to sign up (entering your personal information) and get a badge. Other people go there to hack on stuff, so it's a fun place to co-work from.

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I just talked to @kaguillera on the phone, and put this ticket on his radar.

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

I just talked to @kaguillera on the phone, and put this ticket on his radar.

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Wow!!
Two week in SF. I didn't think that you had a plan to stay that long but then again I have nothing that would stop me from being able to go.
Full disclosure as I said on the phone my main concerns are as follows:

  1. The Cost. Is the estimated $2400 per person? If that is per person that is out of my ability since (I Works No Where And Draws No Pay!). The timing is kind of bad for me financially (see private email.)
  2. Would the cost of the trip be worth it? What is the return on the investment.

Other than these issues I think it would be good. It would be two weeks of intense focused hacking and networking. That is always a good thing.

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kaguillera commented Oct 31, 2016

Wow!!
Two week in SF. I didn't think that you had a plan to stay that long but then again I have nothing that would stop me from being able to go.
Full disclosure as I said on the phone my main concerns are as follows:

  1. The Cost. Is the estimated $2400 per person? If that is per person that is out of my ability since (I Works No Where And Draws No Pay!). The timing is kind of bad for me financially (see private email.)
  2. Would the cost of the trip be worth it? What is the return on the investment.

Other than these issues I think it would be good. It would be two weeks of intense focused hacking and networking. That is always a good thing.

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@kaguillera My proposal here is that Gratipay pay for the trip. I can't afford it personally, either! 😮

So the question is: does Gratipay want to pay for two, one, or zero of us to make this trip?

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

@kaguillera My proposal here is that Gratipay pay for the trip. I can't afford it personally, either! 😮

So the question is: does Gratipay want to pay for two, one, or zero of us to make this trip?

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Is the estimated $2400 per person?

I think it would roughly be per person, yes. I haven't had anything super-solid come through in terms of free places to stay, so I think we'd need to book a room on Airbnb today or tomorrow in order to lock something in for this. That plus we'd need two plane tickets.

Back up to $580. :-/

Now at $530. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

Is the estimated $2400 per person?

I think it would roughly be per person, yes. I haven't had anything super-solid come through in terms of free places to stay, so I think we'd need to book a room on Airbnb today or tomorrow in order to lock something in for this. That plus we'd need two plane tickets.

Back up to $580. :-/

Now at $530. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

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Would the cost of the trip be worth it? What is the return on the investment.

I don't know how to estimate this. This past week at All Things Open has already netted us one new contributor (#866), as well as a number of industry connections (#757 (comment) ff.). How do we estimate the value of that?

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

Would the cost of the trip be worth it? What is the return on the investment.

I don't know how to estimate this. This past week at All Things Open has already netted us one new contributor (#866), as well as a number of industry connections (#757 (comment) ff.). How do we estimate the value of that?

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I didn't think that you had a plan to stay that long

Well, my thinking was that YC's interviews are highly likely to be one or both of those weeks, since the week following is a holiday in the U.S. (Thanksgiving) and this week is so soon to book travel.

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

I didn't think that you had a plan to stay that long

Well, my thinking was that YC's interviews are highly likely to be one or both of those weeks, since the week following is a holiday in the U.S. (Thanksgiving) and this week is so soon to book travel.

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... and there's so much to do out there!

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chadwhitacre commented Oct 31, 2016

... and there's so much to do out there!

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To be totally honest I am feeling guilty/bad to use that amount of Gratipay's money (I know that is kind of weird considering that I said it would be too much money for my finances) but that is just how I am.
That aside, I know that if we have that much time to focus on hacking and networking would be very productive.
Thus in conclusion if you think that you really need me there as a "wing man" then I am all for it. But if you can do it on your own by all means do it yourself. The final decision is in the Team's hands.

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kaguillera commented Oct 31, 2016

To be totally honest I am feeling guilty/bad to use that amount of Gratipay's money (I know that is kind of weird considering that I said it would be too much money for my finances) but that is just how I am.
That aside, I know that if we have that much time to focus on hacking and networking would be very productive.
Thus in conclusion if you think that you really need me there as a "wing man" then I am all for it. But if you can do it on your own by all means do it yourself. The final decision is in the Team's hands.

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Now at $530. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Now we're up to $675 for bad flights and $775 for good ones. We're less than a week out, I think the price is going to keep going up from here. :-/

But if you can do it on your own by all means do it yourself.

I am torn. It will not be the same, but remember that there is a slim chance we will be out there together in January, February, and March for YC (#836). Even assuming YC doesn't come through I suspect that we should be visiting SF at least once a year if not twice anyway. This trip is reconnaissance in that respect. We can plan ahead better next time.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 1, 2016

Now at $530. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Now we're up to $675 for bad flights and $775 for good ones. We're less than a week out, I think the price is going to keep going up from here. :-/

But if you can do it on your own by all means do it yourself.

I am torn. It will not be the same, but remember that there is a slim chance we will be out there together in January, February, and March for YC (#836). Even assuming YC doesn't come through I suspect that we should be visiting SF at least once a year if not twice anyway. This trip is reconnaissance in that respect. We can plan ahead better next time.

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The final decision is in the Team's hands.

Indeed. Let's see if we can use GitHub reactions on this comment to vote! :-)

Options for Trip to SF to Hack and Network

Reaction Option Budget ($) % of Cash in Bank
👎 stay home 0 0
👍 send one person 2,400 34
🎉 send two people 4,800 68

Ping @aandis @chrisdev @clone1018 @dmk246 @JessaWitzel @mattbk @rohitpaulk.

@kaguillera Perhaps you and I should vote last, though I think we do need to reach a final decision today.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 1, 2016

The final decision is in the Team's hands.

Indeed. Let's see if we can use GitHub reactions on this comment to vote! :-)

Options for Trip to SF to Hack and Network

Reaction Option Budget ($) % of Cash in Bank
👎 stay home 0 0
👍 send one person 2,400 34
🎉 send two people 4,800 68

Ping @aandis @chrisdev @clone1018 @dmk246 @JessaWitzel @mattbk @rohitpaulk.

@kaguillera Perhaps you and I should vote last, though I think we do need to reach a final decision today.

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I've voted to send one person, only because of the % of cash we'd be burning if we sent 2.

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rohitpaulk commented Nov 1, 2016

I've voted to send one person, only because of the % of cash we'd be burning if we sent 2.

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% of cash is % of total cash? Or % of cash this month? I like context.

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JessaWitzel commented Nov 1, 2016

% of cash is % of total cash? Or % of cash this month? I like context.

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% of cash is % of total cash? Or % of cash this month? I like context.

@JessaWitzel % of total cash :)

From the description:

We have about $7,000 in the bank right now and are accumulating about $182/mo

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rohitpaulk commented Nov 1, 2016

% of cash is % of total cash? Or % of cash this month? I like context.

@JessaWitzel % of total cash :)

From the description:

We have about $7,000 in the bank right now and are accumulating about $182/mo

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@rohitpaulk I assumed the thread started where I was mentioned! Fail. Person who likes context should be diligent in finding it. I'm a newb. Also I think I'm super valuable and am a great return on investment. :) Go!

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JessaWitzel commented Nov 1, 2016

@rohitpaulk I assumed the thread started where I was mentioned! Fail. Person who likes context should be diligent in finding it. I'm a newb. Also I think I'm super valuable and am a great return on investment. :) Go!

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@wwitzel3 is encouraging me to leave all my thoughts so here: As someone who is risk averse I would likely not go if it were up to me. However, if you think this is a pivotal moment for gratipay and that going has great potential to allow you to get a ton of work done and make good connections that will ultimately jump start the project into making more money, you should go. I vote send two people if you think that is the case. What else does the money get used for?

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JessaWitzel commented Nov 1, 2016

@wwitzel3 is encouraging me to leave all my thoughts so here: As someone who is risk averse I would likely not go if it were up to me. However, if you think this is a pivotal moment for gratipay and that going has great potential to allow you to get a ton of work done and make good connections that will ultimately jump start the project into making more money, you should go. I vote send two people if you think that is the case. What else does the money get used for?

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What else does the money get used for?

Here is our budget. The big thing not included there is lawyer's fees, which we're going to have some of soon (for gratipay/gratipay.com#4117). Those, of course, rack up quick.

Also I think I'm super valuable and am a great return on investment.

Couldn't agree more! :)

P.S. I've added "in Bank" to "% of Cash." :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 1, 2016

What else does the money get used for?

Here is our budget. The big thing not included there is lawyer's fees, which we're going to have some of soon (for gratipay/gratipay.com#4117). Those, of course, rack up quick.

Also I think I'm super valuable and am a great return on investment.

Couldn't agree more! :)

P.S. I've added "in Bank" to "% of Cash." :-)

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I'm getting ready to pull the trigger. I've texted @kaguillera, apparently he's away from his phone. :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

I'm getting ready to pull the trigger. I've texted @kaguillera, apparently he's away from his phone. :-)

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I'm voting for making the trip solo. I hear @kaguillera saying he is okay with that at #867 (comment), and that seems to be the sense of things on #867 (comment).

Okay! Booking flight and room!

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

I'm voting for making the trip solo. I hear @kaguillera saying he is okay with that at #867 (comment), and that seems to be the sense of things on #867 (comment).

Okay! Booking flight and room!

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Flights books. 👍 🛫 🛬

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

Flights books. 👍 🛫 🛬

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Waiting for @JessWhit to help me recover our Airbnb login ...

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

Waiting for @JessWhit to help me recover our Airbnb login ...

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yep away from my phone but not my laptop. It is cool if you can do it on your own. It will be like the conference but only longer and without a schedule 👍 😃

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kaguillera commented Nov 2, 2016

yep away from my phone but not my laptop. It is cool if you can do it on your own. It will be like the conference but only longer and without a schedule 👍 😃

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Thanks @kaguillera. Sorry. 😞 See you tomorrow, ya? :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

Thanks @kaguillera. Sorry. 😞 See you tomorrow, ya? :-)

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yes. Paramount? I will check my phone as soon as I find it

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kaguillera commented Nov 2, 2016

yes. Paramount? I will check my phone as soon as I find it

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I will check my phone as soon as I find it

Hah! :D 📱

Paramount?

Yes! Hopefully we will see @dmk246, too! :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

I will check my phone as soon as I find it

Hah! :D 📱

Paramount?

Yes! Hopefully we will see @dmk246, too! :-)

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Hoping so too!!! :)

dmk246 commented Nov 2, 2016

Hoping so too!!! :)

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@dmk246 Wanna vote on #867 (comment)? :-) <3

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

@dmk246 Wanna vote on #867 (comment)? :-) <3

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amount ($) thing
781.20 flight
1,003.00 room
1,784.2 subtotal
2,400.00 budget
615.80 remaining
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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

amount ($) thing
781.20 flight
1,003.00 room
1,784.2 subtotal
2,400.00 budget
615.80 remaining
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That should cover food then?

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kaguillera commented Nov 2, 2016

That should cover food then?

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@kaguillera Yeah, that's consistent with what I spec'd out at #867 (comment). Works out to about $50 per diem—should be adequate for both food/coffee/drinks and train fare.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 2, 2016

@kaguillera Yeah, that's consistent with what I spec'd out at #867 (comment). Works out to about $50 per diem—should be adequate for both food/coffee/drinks and train fare.

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Yep that sounds about right. 🎉

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kaguillera commented Nov 2, 2016

Yep that sounds about right. 🎉

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!m @whit537

Have fun and build good stuff!

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clone1018 commented Nov 2, 2016

!m @whit537

Have fun and build good stuff!

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The Internet Archive provides "lunch & lots of great info/stories on Fridays!" Makes me think of #436. Should I also visit Wikimedia and Mozilla?

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 3, 2016

The Internet Archive provides "lunch & lots of great info/stories on Fridays!" Makes me think of #436. Should I also visit Wikimedia and Mozilla?

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The more we can make people aware of the value they're already getting, the better. Showing a dependency tree (gratipay/gratipay.com#4135) is part of that. Could we use one of those algorithm for estimating cost to produce software based on lines of code to display an anchoring number?

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 16, 2016

The more we can make people aware of the value they're already getting, the better. Showing a dependency tree (gratipay/gratipay.com#4135) is part of that. Could we use one of those algorithm for estimating cost to produce software based on lines of code to display an anchoring number?

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Do you even need lines of code? For a rough guess, a dependency is a dependency, no matter if you call on it once or a thousand times.

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mattbk commented Nov 16, 2016

Do you even need lines of code? For a rough guess, a dependency is a dependency, no matter if you call on it once or a thousand times.

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"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

Without judgment, this is Christianity distilled.

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mattbk commented Nov 16, 2016

"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

Without judgment, this is Christianity distilled.

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"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

IMO there are other things that they can get. At the very least, the owners for the libraries could appreciate the gratitude, which I suppose is part of our mission.

"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

IMO there are other things that they can get. At the very least, the owners for the libraries could appreciate the gratitude, which I suppose is part of our mission.

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this is Christianity distilled

That was an accident. :-P

At the very least, the owners for the libraries could appreciate the gratitude, which I suppose is part of our mission.

I was thinking of the companies, actually (are we on the same page?). Like, I was talking to the Bitmatica cofounder yesterday, and he was like "Yeah, we use open source, and we don't pay. There's no pain point. What do I get for paying?"

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 16, 2016

this is Christianity distilled

That was an accident. :-P

At the very least, the owners for the libraries could appreciate the gratitude, which I suppose is part of our mission.

I was thinking of the companies, actually (are we on the same page?). Like, I was talking to the Bitmatica cofounder yesterday, and he was like "Yeah, we use open source, and we don't pay. There's no pain point. What do I get for paying?"

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I dropped my sweater walking back from GitHub. I trust that someone who needed it picked it up.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 17, 2016

I dropped my sweater walking back from GitHub. I trust that someone who needed it picked it up.

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Alright! I just finished watching Nadia's recent talk about funding open source. I spent an hour with her at the GitHub office this afternoon. We covered a lot of ground. The biggest take-away for me was that Open Collective has buzz right now (cf.), and when Gratipay comes up it's like, "Are they still processing?" I think I was able to say "Yes! We're getting the band back together! That's why I'm out here!"

Prior to meeting with Nadia, I spent the morning and early afternoon coworking with five of the Shareable crew. I did a call with Neal a year ago, and I ran into Tom at #314. I'll probably run into Maira tomorrow night at the SELC dinner. I see Shareable as a strategic partner when we're ready to branch out of open source and reach more of the mainstream (same bucket as the Archive). I'm thinking of pitching them on a story about coworking in Pittsburgh—surprisingly, I am finding that Pittsburgh has some coworking gems relative to San Francisco—which could be a chance to reference Gratipay as well.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 17, 2016

Alright! I just finished watching Nadia's recent talk about funding open source. I spent an hour with her at the GitHub office this afternoon. We covered a lot of ground. The biggest take-away for me was that Open Collective has buzz right now (cf.), and when Gratipay comes up it's like, "Are they still processing?" I think I was able to say "Yes! We're getting the band back together! That's why I'm out here!"

Prior to meeting with Nadia, I spent the morning and early afternoon coworking with five of the Shareable crew. I did a call with Neal a year ago, and I ran into Tom at #314. I'll probably run into Maira tomorrow night at the SELC dinner. I see Shareable as a strategic partner when we're ready to branch out of open source and reach more of the mainstream (same bucket as the Archive). I'm thinking of pitching them on a story about coworking in Pittsburgh—surprisingly, I am finding that Pittsburgh has some coworking gems relative to San Francisco—which could be a chance to reference Gratipay as well.

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Two more nights! 😴

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 17, 2016

Two more nights! 😴

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P.S. So far I've been able to get three hours in for COS each morning. I'm getting a late start today (6:15, usually 5:00 or 5:30), but since we don't have funding it's time I've needed to spend even while out here.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 17, 2016

P.S. So far I've been able to get three hours in for COS each morning. I'm getting a late start today (6:15, usually 5:00 or 5:30), but since we don't have funding it's time I've needed to spend even while out here.

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http://chrismessina.me/contact ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Chris!

I'm cold-contacting you from Gratipay, a really open-source-y startup working on the problem of funding open culture. I'm visiting SF from Pittsburgh in order to meet people and try to rebuild some momentum for Gratipay after the ahem "Gratipocalypse," and this guy I just met at Mazarine that met you once said I reminded him of you. :-)

Here's a couple links to whet your whistle about the stuff I'm working on:

https://changelog.com/posts/open-products
http://inside.gratipay.com/big-picture/roadmap

I fly back to Pittsburgh tomorrow (Friday) night. May I buy you lunch at Cavalier before I go? I want to introduce you to Gratipay and see if Uber could be a partner. Cause, you know, it's h*ckin Uber. :P

lmk ...

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 17, 2016

http://chrismessina.me/contact ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Chris!

I'm cold-contacting you from Gratipay, a really open-source-y startup working on the problem of funding open culture. I'm visiting SF from Pittsburgh in order to meet people and try to rebuild some momentum for Gratipay after the ahem "Gratipocalypse," and this guy I just met at Mazarine that met you once said I reminded him of you. :-)

Here's a couple links to whet your whistle about the stuff I'm working on:

https://changelog.com/posts/open-products
http://inside.gratipay.com/big-picture/roadmap

I fly back to Pittsburgh tomorrow (Friday) night. May I buy you lunch at Cavalier before I go? I want to introduce you to Gratipay and see if Uber could be a partner. Cause, you know, it's h*ckin Uber. :P

lmk ...

chad

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I don't generally like to put stories like the following on the Internet, because I think it cheapens them. This one is such a great illustration of the meaning of Gratipay's mission—to cultivate an economy of gratitude, generosity, and love—that I decided to share it.


I just passed Cameron for the third time: six feet tall, Asian-American, baggy jeans, filthy blue sweatshirt unzipped with the hood up. He was crouching under a city map in front of the Burger King next to the streetcars at Powell and Market. Scattered in front of him were coins and bits of chalk.

Cameron sleeps in Union Square. He showed me where the first time we met. "Under that tree. My buddy sleeps there. We watch each other's stuff. Some people are bad, but I try to help people. Like, if I have five dollars, and you need money, I'll just give it to you. I'm all about love." He was acting skittish, though, and a passing janitor confirmed my suspicion. "Hey, you can't do that!" After he'd wheeled his trash can past, Cameron looked at the sidewalk in front of him and said, "I'm writing 'love'. They keep telling me not to, but I'm going to do it anyway." I gave him a heart coin and moved on, as he swooped back in for a few more surreptitious strokes. I only found traces a day or two later. Sorry, janitor.

The second time I found him crouching on Market. He didn't seem to remember me at all—no biggie, the city is busy. "I'm writing 'love', but I don't have any chalk." Just stubs in front of him. "I'm all about love." Not so skittish. No janitors down here.

He didn't recognize me just now either. "Hey Cameron." He looked up slowly, blankly. "You want a burger or something?"

"Huh?"

"Do you like hamburgers?"

"No, man, I just need chalk." He gestured long-faced at the stubs in front of him. "I don't have any chalk."

"Where can you get it? I'll go get you some."

"Really?" Incredulous.

"Yeah, really."

"Walgreen's. It's on the second floor."

"Okay. You want to come with me, or should I bring it back here?"

"I'll be here. It's two dollars. I've been collecting these coins." Shuffles the coins around.

"Just plain white chalk? No colors?"

"Yeah, white chalk. It's on the second floor."

Seven minutes later he was up and moving about, inspecting his work and kicking coins around. I figured I'd just drop off the goods rather than bother him again, but he noticed me.

Slowly taking it in, "Is that for me?"

Now I'm wondering if this dude is Dory. "Yeah."

"You bought those for me?"

"Yeah, man, for you."

We paused for a moment, standing side by side, looking down at the two fresh packs of plain white chalk sitting next to the stubs.

"You didn't have to do that for me, but you did."

Turning around and pointing to the sidewalk, I said, "Well, you didn't have to do that for us, but you did."

After another pause, Cameron's face broke into a smile as he went for the dap. Our fists connected and we smiled at each other, then I silently turned to go. Ten feet away, he called out, "That's love, man." I looked back, gave him a thumbs up. Crouching again, staring me in the eye and smiling broadly, he said, "I like you."

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

I don't generally like to put stories like the following on the Internet, because I think it cheapens them. This one is such a great illustration of the meaning of Gratipay's mission—to cultivate an economy of gratitude, generosity, and love—that I decided to share it.


I just passed Cameron for the third time: six feet tall, Asian-American, baggy jeans, filthy blue sweatshirt unzipped with the hood up. He was crouching under a city map in front of the Burger King next to the streetcars at Powell and Market. Scattered in front of him were coins and bits of chalk.

Cameron sleeps in Union Square. He showed me where the first time we met. "Under that tree. My buddy sleeps there. We watch each other's stuff. Some people are bad, but I try to help people. Like, if I have five dollars, and you need money, I'll just give it to you. I'm all about love." He was acting skittish, though, and a passing janitor confirmed my suspicion. "Hey, you can't do that!" After he'd wheeled his trash can past, Cameron looked at the sidewalk in front of him and said, "I'm writing 'love'. They keep telling me not to, but I'm going to do it anyway." I gave him a heart coin and moved on, as he swooped back in for a few more surreptitious strokes. I only found traces a day or two later. Sorry, janitor.

The second time I found him crouching on Market. He didn't seem to remember me at all—no biggie, the city is busy. "I'm writing 'love', but I don't have any chalk." Just stubs in front of him. "I'm all about love." Not so skittish. No janitors down here.

He didn't recognize me just now either. "Hey Cameron." He looked up slowly, blankly. "You want a burger or something?"

"Huh?"

"Do you like hamburgers?"

"No, man, I just need chalk." He gestured long-faced at the stubs in front of him. "I don't have any chalk."

"Where can you get it? I'll go get you some."

"Really?" Incredulous.

"Yeah, really."

"Walgreen's. It's on the second floor."

"Okay. You want to come with me, or should I bring it back here?"

"I'll be here. It's two dollars. I've been collecting these coins." Shuffles the coins around.

"Just plain white chalk? No colors?"

"Yeah, white chalk. It's on the second floor."

Seven minutes later he was up and moving about, inspecting his work and kicking coins around. I figured I'd just drop off the goods rather than bother him again, but he noticed me.

Slowly taking it in, "Is that for me?"

Now I'm wondering if this dude is Dory. "Yeah."

"You bought those for me?"

"Yeah, man, for you."

We paused for a moment, standing side by side, looking down at the two fresh packs of plain white chalk sitting next to the stubs.

"You didn't have to do that for me, but you did."

Turning around and pointing to the sidewalk, I said, "Well, you didn't have to do that for us, but you did."

After another pause, Cameron's face broke into a smile as he went for the dap. Our fists connected and we smiled at each other, then I silently turned to go. Ten feet away, he called out, "That's love, man." I looked back, gave him a thumbs up. Crouching again, staring me in the eye and smiling broadly, he said, "I like you."

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Also, I had an awesome time visiting with J.C. Foust and Aza Raskin out in Oakland, who are working on https://other.chat/. Aza and I first met over ten years ago at a ChiPy meetup. This is the first I've met Juan-Carlos. (Danny never showed … looks like I missed a DM on Twitter.) That and the SELC dinner were a much better slice of Oakland than my experience last week. At the SELC dinner I was able to connect briefly with Janelle and wave to Maira, and I met three folks from the Christensen Fund, which sounds pretty amazing, and a couple others. Janelle brings a really refreshing quirkiness to law, without compromising on rigor. Cartoon bylaws! :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

Also, I had an awesome time visiting with J.C. Foust and Aza Raskin out in Oakland, who are working on https://other.chat/. Aza and I first met over ten years ago at a ChiPy meetup. This is the first I've met Juan-Carlos. (Danny never showed … looks like I missed a DM on Twitter.) That and the SELC dinner were a much better slice of Oakland than my experience last week. At the SELC dinner I was able to connect briefly with Janelle and wave to Maira, and I met three folks from the Christensen Fund, which sounds pretty amazing, and a couple others. Janelle brings a really refreshing quirkiness to law, without compromising on rigor. Cartoon bylaws! :-)

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In other news, I did hear back from Chris Messina. We might be able to meet tomorrow.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

In other news, I did hear back from Chris Messina. We might be able to meet tomorrow.

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Alright, time to pack up and check out of the hotel.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

Alright, time to pack up and check out of the hotel.

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Checked out, now at the Amazon Loft. Movin' pretty slow today ...

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

Checked out, now at the Amazon Loft. Movin' pretty slow today ...

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Had a guy recognize me. "You're not very invisible, are you." :-)

Just talked for a while with him and a guy from https://typeql.com/ (who knew of Gratipay).

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

Had a guy recognize me. "You're not very invisible, are you." :-)

Just talked for a while with him and a guy from https://typeql.com/ (who knew of Gratipay).

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I am definitely exhausted. I feel like crap.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

I am definitely exhausted. I feel like crap.

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Alright, meeting Chris at http://www.prospectsf.com/ in an hour.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 18, 2016

Alright, meeting Chris at http://www.prospectsf.com/ in an hour.

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Mind-exploding meeting with Chris. tl;dr is that given our current strategy, diversity is another point of leverage with tech companies in addition to (and probably more powerful than) developer relations more broadly. That fits with our previous experience, of course. Zooming out, he challenged us to think about the role of government in making work for people in the coming years, in the light of New Deal works projects. The government cares about preserving order, and keeping people preoccupied with work is a significant part of that. We talked about "virtual work," layering a less urgent kind of work on top of the post-scarcity/attention economy. Not exactly a converging conversation here at the end of the trip. :-)

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

Mind-exploding meeting with Chris. tl;dr is that given our current strategy, diversity is another point of leverage with tech companies in addition to (and probably more powerful than) developer relations more broadly. That fits with our previous experience, of course. Zooming out, he challenged us to think about the role of government in making work for people in the coming years, in the light of New Deal works projects. The government cares about preserving order, and keeping people preoccupied with work is a significant part of that. We talked about "virtual work," layering a less urgent kind of work on top of the post-scarcity/attention economy. Not exactly a converging conversation here at the end of the trip. :-)

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http://www.piamancini.com/ ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Hi, Pia. :-)

My name is Chad, and I'm with Gratipay, which is basically competing with Open Collective. Xavier and I got to spend time together last spring at OuiShare Fest and afterwards. I'm in San Francisco today for a few more hours, and I figured what the heck—I'm reaching out to see if there's any chance of a short conversation together before I leave. Nadia and Brandon from GitHub speak highly of your work, and who knows? Maybe it makes sense to join forces and work on this problem together. :-)

Text me if you're interested in trying to connect at the last minute here. Otherwise maybe we can schedule a video call in the next few weeks?

Thanks, Pia. Let me know ... :-)

chad
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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

http://www.piamancini.com/ ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Hi, Pia. :-)

My name is Chad, and I'm with Gratipay, which is basically competing with Open Collective. Xavier and I got to spend time together last spring at OuiShare Fest and afterwards. I'm in San Francisco today for a few more hours, and I figured what the heck—I'm reaching out to see if there's any chance of a short conversation together before I leave. Nadia and Brandon from GitHub speak highly of your work, and who knows? Maybe it makes sense to join forces and work on this problem together. :-)

Text me if you're interested in trying to connect at the last minute here. Otherwise maybe we can schedule a video call in the next few weeks?

Thanks, Pia. Let me know ... :-)

chad
@whit537
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I've got about three hours before I should start heading to the airport.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

I've got about three hours before I should start heading to the airport.

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I dropped my bags off back at the hotel. Didn't want to haul them around.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

I dropped my bags off back at the hotel. Didn't want to haul them around.

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I'm at the airport. Just checked email and I did hear back from Pia. Will pick up on #458 ...

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

I'm at the airport. Just checked email and I did hear back from Pia. Will pick up on #458 ...

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I found tiny, tiny little sparks of gratitude and generosity in San Francisco. Tiny, tiny sparks.

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

I found tiny, tiny little sparks of gratitude and generosity in San Francisco. Tiny, tiny sparks.

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Home!

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chadwhitacre commented Nov 19, 2016

Home!

This was referenced Nov 22, 2016

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"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

I knew this seemed familiar. Public radio and television do this all the time:
image

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mattbk commented Nov 22, 2016

"But what do I get for it?"
"You already got the thing."

I knew this seemed familiar. Public radio and television do this all the time:
image

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