startup advice

Startup Weekend Amsterdam: Advice and insights

From the fascinating APPsterdam experiment / movement (“persuade a load of startups to move to Amsterdam for the Summer, instead of the more expensive California, and create an ad-hoc startup hotbed”) –

“You might think companies that have gone out of business are no threat to you, but if you’re trying to get funding, they are your biggest threat. The only thing worse than an unproven model is a disproven model. You need to know exactly why they failed, and prove that you are different.”

“When you’re pitching on stage, don’t bother giving a bio. You need that time to show off your products. Plan for failure. That means being ready to present without slides or notes. No live demos. especially ones that rely on WiFi. If this can trip up Steve Jobs, what chance do you have? Make a movie.”

games industry recruiting

Clint Hocking thinks all young men are rapists

Seems a bit Freudian to me. According to Clint, Viking aggression wasn’t caused by eking out a bitter existence in freezing lands without enough farmland and food – a need to cull the local population, and take food from elsewhere to survive – but instead by the fact that all young men inevitably rape and pillage whenever they can

Normally, I’d leave him to his Hardcore Feminist Club and ignore him – but he’s using this as a metaphor to explain “what’s wrong with the games industry”. I’d say he’s as out of touch with the games industry as he is with history. And his article paints an implicit picture of the industry that’s deeply offputting.

There are small pockets like he describes; in my experience, they’re a minority, and they’re generally USA studios consisting mostly of recent graduates clowning around … or run by adult men who have issues with growing up, and still behave like kids.

But huge swathes of the games industry are nothing like that. I can only speak from personal experience (at a wide variety of companies), but … Clint’s description is the exception rather than the rule. It’s also IMHO more damaging than beneficial: apart from convincing everyone in their right mind not to hang around the 20-something wannabe-rapists that make up the bulk of a studio, he paints a picture of industry-wide mediocrity and workplace horror that would send any rational person running in the opposite direction. It’s not like that. Really.