Montage of Heck - Meeting Kurt Cobain in his own home movies

Like a lot of people our generation, I grew up listening to Nirvana. In Utero was on repeat on my Walkman, and I still can lip sync the words whenever I hear it. But the rock star and the man were different things, and tonight's HBO premiere of the Cobain documentary "Montage of Heck" made the man that much more real. 

Instead than rockumentary or myth-making, most of the film is Kurt Cobain's own journal writing, art, and of course music, both released and unreleased. The home videos are the most compelling — a true window to his life. You do feel like you're spying on private moments, Kurt growing up, and his life with Courtney Love and their daughter Frances Bean. 

Any Nirvana fan would love this documentary. It's not easy to watch, but important if you, like me, felt like you were given a voice by the music. Thanks Kurdt. 

Ross Ulbricht's private journals released: Self-doubt, first steps, tribulations

Here's an excerpt of what Ross Ulbricht wrote years ago about starting Silk Road from Ars Technica:

I was calling it Underground Brokers, but eventually settled on Silk Road. The idea was to create a website where people could buy anything anonymously, with no trail whatsoever that could lead back to them. I had been studying the technology for a while, but needed a business model and strategy. I finally decided that I would produce mushrooms so that I could list them on the site for cheap to get people interested. I worked my ass off setting up a lab in a cabin out near Bastrop off the grid. In hindsight, this was a terrible idea and I would never repeat it, but I did it and produced several kilos of high quality shrooms. On the website side, I was struggling to figure out on my own how to set it up. Driving out to Bastrop, working on Good Wagon, and trying to keep up my relationship with Julia was taking all of my time. By the end of the year, I still didn’t have a site up, let alone a server.

I went through a lot over the year in my personal relationships as well. I had mostly shut myself off from people because I felt ashamed of where my life was. I had left my promising career as a scientist to be an investment adviser and entrepreneur and came up empty handed. More and more my emotions and thoughts were ruling my life and my word was losing power. At some point I finally broke down and realized my love for people again, and started reaching out. Throughout the year I slowly re-cultivated my relationship with my word and started honoring it again.

My relationship with Julia was pretty rocky throughout the year. We even broke up for about a month and half toward the end. I couldn’t even tell you now why it was a struggle, or why we broke up. On my side, I wasn’t communicating well at all. I would let little things build up until I got mad. We eventually got back together and even moved in together, and it has been amazingly good since.

In 2011, I am creating a year of prosperity and power beyond what I have ever experienced before. Silk Road is going to become a phenomenon and at least one person will tell me about it, unknowing that I was its creator. 

The full article is fascinating and worth the read.

The place between grey hat and white hat SEO: being wrong on purpose

There's three types of SEO. White Hat is playing within Google's rules. Black Hat is playing outside of them (think comment bots that drop links). Grey Hat is the space inbetween. "The Gawker" strategy lies somewhere between White Hat and Grey Hat.

The linkbuilding strategy called "the Gawker," is where you hire someone known for choosing unpopular positions and trolling/being unable to take criticism. That person creates a shitstorm by saying something incredibly stupid and stubbornly sticking to it. This prompts everyone to talk about how irrational they are and generates a lot of controversy. You get a lot of links to your site during the controversy. Later, you fire this person to save face.

One of the biggest rules of posting anything on the tubes is "Don't be wrong on the Internet" because everyone HAS to correct you, this strategy relies on using that that rule to your advantage. Post something absurdly dumb in a random reddit comment page, and a dozen people will feel the need to correct you, and all you are is an anonymous person on the internet. When a media entity - especially a generally respected one - posts something absurd, other media entities feel the obligation to correct them. Since their readers are probably unaware of the other media entity's wrong-headed entry, the other media company links to it. As mentioned earlier, a link from a domain that has lots of links is worth many, many times more than a link from a less endowed website.

Left unchecked, this will continue to grow as a serious problem in modern media. 

Elon Musk AMA wisdom — On knowledge and learning

Elon Musk on knowledge and learning via Reddit AMA

I think most people can learn a lot more than they think they can. They sell themselves short without trying.

One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to.