Entries by matt

The real winner of Tinder vs Vanity Fair is science education

Recently, Tinder has a public reaction on Twitter to an article in Vanity Fair. The brief gist is that the Vanity Fair writer, Nancy Jo Sales, wrote about Tinder as contributing to a negative hookup culture. Tinder wrote a long series of tweets in response about all the good, positive interactions people have on their […]

Strange Love or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Ring

One of the biggest fights my wife and I ever had was about engagement rings. Specifically, her engagement ring. My position was that engagement rings were gendered (notifying other men that women were sexually claimed), expensive (relative to other things we were saving for), and not consistent with our values as a couple. Her position […]

The failures of user research only with fans

I love talking to people as a way of designing products. At Thrive, I used to put a little note at the bottom of every weekly email that invited users in the New York City area to let me buy them lunch in return for just sitting down and talking about the day-to-day of how […]

Entropy means you owe the world a debt

As a kid, I was obsessed with entropy. Partially because of my obsession with science and in particular all of the special properties of ice, most notably freezing as a local reversal of entropy. And partially because of the Young Wizards book series, in which the antagonist is a personification of entropy and the protagonist wizards […]

Zero rating should be part of the net neutrality discussion

Originally, this blog post was simply about the fact that nobody was saying “net neutrality” and “zero rating” in the same sentence. But then I found out that somebody was and far more eloquently than I, so go read this as a primer. Given that Jon Healey made the argument so well, I am going […]

Why I read fiction

When I was a kid, I rode the bus for an hour and a half to get home because they wouldn’t let an eight-year-old cross rural highways, so I had to go clear to the end of the route and come back.  I spent that entire time reading and consequently, as an adult,  I am […]

Choosing a career, the social psych way

One of the most common questions I get from young people is “How do I know what I want to do with my life?” By which they generally mean “What job should I take?” or “What career should I have?”. And that’s a reasonable question, especially given how important work is to happiness. My answer, […]

The Potential For Divesting In Startups

Earlier this year, we discovered that Tinder is/was seemingly run by terrible men.  Ditto Snapchat.  And it prompted a conversation with a friend about moral hazards, modern tech investing, and the increasing problem that the current investment environment is bringing to light. Basically, to paraphrase the conversation, imagine you were a VC who was approached […]

Advocate more than Male at #GHC14

This year, for the first time, the Grace Hopper Celebration is actively asking for men to join the Women in Computing conversation.  Though the plans were announced months ago, the timing couldn’t be better: Emma Watson recently made an impassioned plea at the UN for men to become feminists, other celebs piled on, and for […]

How F2P PVP gaming broke the grind

Yes, this is another one of those posts about the problems of gamification.  Because I like games that grind. Give me eight hours of strategic, deliberate decision making and I’m there. For this, I blame my mother, who restricted how much time we could play video games, except for one game that we were allowed […]