📻 — THE END AND BEGINNING // SYSOPS HAS REQUESTED YOUR PRESENCE #EVILCORP…

This is your (last) Metacreator, Daily.

Reading Time: ~ 5 min.

Good morning yeniverse!

I’ll cut to the chase: I fucked up and I may have gotten more than a few of you excited about the upcoming changes that I shared on Monday

… because today is the FINAL ISSUE of YEN.FM for the foreseeable future.

It’s been an incredible ride and an unbelievable journey. But, as I assessed the work ahead of all of us I realized that my time would be better used in other, more strategic parts of the expanding metaverse.

It was simply about time, something we all need to be hyper-sensitive too.

You see, I am a suicide survivor — you may not have known that. I spent a good deal of my life thinking that no one liked me and that no one cared. I was dying on the top-bunk of my freshman dorm while my “roommate” played HALO on his newly-minted XBOX.

I had never felt so lonely (and I was glad that it was going to be over soon). Apparently, I suck at suicide so that didn’t work and I woke up in my own vomit and with whatever energy left I called my Uncle and Aunt some 30 miles away who came and helped me take back my life.

I have been on a mission to not fuck around with my time ever since; even at the cost of losing so many connections and relationships that I’ve made with all of you (but we can connect in the YENIVERSE now!!).

Thank you for reaching this piece-of-shit in your inbox everyday; I see the stats, I read the comments, I think of each one of you by memory (I do, it’s weird, I know). I’ll see you in the metaverse.

🛑 — Oh! We're launched on Product Hunt! Upvote, share... you know the drill! 🎉

See you in THE YENIVERSE!

To infinity & community,

— john


One… more… time.

  1. Forest. The real OGs. Good question. Supply, stupidArt.

  2. BurnTwitch. Not boringTopics. Smells like successEasy.

  3. AmazeWTFSPACs. It’s not about energy, it’s about control.

  4. NeatToysCrazySteveHiroServiceTrends. Real-time.

  5. Good resourcesPythonTunes. More metabusinessesClose.

  6. The portal openedWhoaRareMarketingADHD. Not new.

  7. GloriousMetaforming. More smellsInternetMiningFutures.

  8. On hiring. Find your voice. Already happening. Fix thisLOL.

  9. TwitchShipContributionsAnimoca. TL;DR. For thisBeautiful.

  10. Fashion. Ready Player OneTimIntegrity. Time preferences.

  11. NextjsYesFromWelcomePrivacyClose. Go longOkay

  12. Gamble. Both / AndProduct-led marketing. BombWoz. My Woz.

  13. SaverinInsightsProblems. Stats, bro. Believe in yourselfFun.

  14. But don’t stop thereBondsOriginsUFC. Not futureAds.

  15. PREditionsCapsulesMoarMarketBoringStupidWhoops.

  16. Impossible to follow, but entertaining. Fashion is identityOld.

  17. Hate, but, okayRenetFlatPyroBirdsWhateverCurious.

  18. Superworld. Evil Corp. I’m hiring a #metadesigner. Smaller now.

  19. Feels. Shared world. The right shortcutHyro.


I’m sorry I can’t finish the #yenBOOKCLUB that we had started! But, I’ll post my notes from the remaining chapters here — thanks for those that were reading with me! So much of my design aesthetic for this first iteration was reinforced by this book. But, I’d be lying if I said that I loved it; maybe… 20% of it.

Week 9:

  1. A major shift is happening, the first is the inexorable blurring of lines between “product” and “service” as consumers shift expectation of just functional performance to a more broadly satisfying experience. Secondly, design thinking is being applied at new scales from discrete products to complex systems. Thirdly, that there is an end to the unsustainable pace of consumption; limitations and constraints.

  2. “How might we…”

  3. Instead of an inflexible, hierarchical process that is designed once and executed many times, we must imagine how we might create highly flexible, constantly evolving systems in which each exchange between participants is an opportunity for empathy, insight, innovation, and implementation. Every interaction is a small opportunity to make that exchange more valuable to and meaningful for all participants.

  4. If we take time to examine the whole cycle of creation and use of a product — from the extraction of raw materials used in manufacturing to disposal at the end of its useful life — we may be able to find new opportunities for innovation that reduce environmental impact while enhancing rather than diminishing the quality of life we have come to expect.

Week 10:

  1. The greatest design thinkers have always been drawn to the greatest challenges, whether delivering fresh water to Imperial Rome, vaulting the dome of the Florence Cathedral, running a rail line through the British Midlands, or designing the first laptop computer.

  2. Sometimes necessity is the other of innovation.

  3. The idea of designing products, services, and business models that create a rapid return on investment seems very attractive, and it is no accident that it first appeared in places where most people have no choice.

  4. Design thinking is how we will continue to spot opportunities that have global relevance and how we will avoid becoming the victims of the new competitors who thrive in environments where more prudent organizations fear to tread.

  5. The key, as every designer knows, is to craft a brief with enough flexibility to release the imagination of the team, while providing enough specificity to ground its ideas in the lives of their intended beneficiaries.

  6. Don’t forget the children (and education). Design thinking is about education.

And here it is, the final week:

  1. The tools of the design thinker are: getting out into the real world (to be inspired by real people), building prototypes, creating stories to share ideas, and joining forces with folks from other disciplines.

  2. The most challenging design problem is how to design life.

The final chapter captures the high-levels and notes:

  1. Begin at the beginning: It’s about the inclusion and expansion of thought and ideas within the broader organization and network. You need them in senior leadership roles.

  2. Take a human-centered approach: Observation of human behavior is at the root of design thinking. Start with humans first, then business / tech needs second.

  3. Fail early, fail often: Time to first prototype is a good measure of the vitality of an innovation culture.

  4. Get professional help: Seek out extreme users and think of them as a creative asset.

  5. Share the inspiration: Make sure you support inspiration within your organization and community, not just efficiency. In-person and real-time events help nurture this.

  6. Blend big and small projects: Diversify your assets as an organization. Encourage experimentation.

  7. Budget to the pace of innovation: Design thinking is fast-paced, unruly, and disruptive. You will have to rethink your funding schedule and reporting / metrics. You’ll have to reset your expectations.

  8. Find talent any way you can: Source from within. Then, create a system to recruit them.

  9. Design for the cycle: Let the team (members) go through the entire lifecycle of a project.

  10. Don’t ask what, ask why: Is this the right problem to solve?

  11. Open your eyes: Schedule in time to observe the ordinary. Ask questions.

  12. Make it visual: Don’t just think, look. Record your observations and ideas visually.

  13. Build on the ideas of others: All of us are smarter than any of us. Socialize and diversify the idea formation and evolution throughout your organization and business.

  14. Demand options: The pursuit of new options takes time and makes things more complicated, but it is the route to more creative and satisfying solutions. Set deadlines so you know when to stop.

  15. Balance your portfolio: Remember to document the process as it unfolds.


Here’s a practice pitch I found buried in the archives that I thought would be fun to see! Thanks James for anchoring it with me; a good iteration and pass, for sure.

I had no idea at the time that we’d be building out most of that stack (but definitely not in the ways that most people would think). Fun to live in the future, that’s for sure.


I was also hoping to share this for another issue but it’s just this wonderful series from a friend on communication and public speaking — I hope my friend doesn’t mind me sharing it.

I learned a great deal fro this man and I owe him quite a bit. In fact, we all do.

/end