The Ruby of legalese?

If contracts are code (they pretty much are), then someone should invent the Ruby/Scala (pick your readable language) of legalese. Have a programmer/language designer and a laywer pair up. Write a human readable, well-defined language for contracts, and open source it. You’d make millions.

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Twitter buzzing about earthquake in NYC

We just had an earthquake on the eastcoast (NYC), literally a minute ago, and Twitter is buzzing. Twitter was the first place I checked, to make sure I wasn’t just imagining things or having a particularly bad hangover.

Goes to show the power of Twitter and realtime. I wonder if they’ll go down.

Google says (it didn’t take them long either) it was in Virginia, 5.9.

Hiring a team

I was reading about hiring and leading today, and two things stood out:

“The aim should be to have your followers surpass you eventually. A second class leader will try to prevent that, that’s a lose-lose for everyone.”

I always try to hire people who are better than me at what I’m hiring them for. It doesn’t mean they have to be better than me at everything, but at what I’m hiring them for, yes. I do believe in “developing” people, ie. letting them grow, but it helps a lot if they’re really good to start with.

The second part was: ” a very liberal mindset that comes with a reluctance to tell other people what to do”.

Now, I do agree that you have to learn how to tell people what to do, and there might be some reluctance there at first. But mostly, I think that it’s better to tell people what you expect of them, what to aim for, and then let them figure out what they should be doing to get there. Teach them to yearn for the open sea, and all that.

But that requires hiring really smart people who are good at what they do to start with, of course.

I’ve never hired junior people and built them up. I guess that works well in a larger organization with fairly set ways of doing things, where you can just teach them. In smaller, startup-y places, I’d expect you want people who can make the right decisions without supervision.

Interesting though, this hiring/team-building stuff.