In the spring of 2019, Danny Caine, the owner of the Raven Book Store in Lawrence, Kansas, overheard a customer saying she could buy a new hardcover online for $15. Danny took to Twitter to explain the economics of independent bookstores and the thread went viral, putting the 32-year-old small business in the national spotlight. Danny comes on the Rework podcast to talk about why his activism and outspoken stance against Amazon haven’t just felt right, but been good for business too.
“I think there’s potential to get to a similar market share as Android, which I believe now has 85% of all handsets. When you think about it, open source has a virtuous cycle of adoption, people building on the platform and more adoption.”
That comment kicked off a Twitter discussion between Matt and David Heinemeier Hansson about funding and tech monopolies. Then, in a rare example of Internet discourse taking a positive turn instead of devolving into a Godwin’s Law-fueled nightmare, Matt and David got on the phone to keep the debate going. We recorded their conversation and released it as the newest episode of the Rework podcast.
The ongoing debate about Big Tech surveillance and consumer privacy has prompted a fair amount of internal discussion and policy changes at Basecamp over our own practices. We’ve stopped using tracking pixels in emails and no longer collect emails for people who download Getting Real, our free ebook. And in late August, David Heinemeier Hansson wrote a post called “You can heal the Internet,” about alternatives to Big Tech.
On the latest episode of the Rework podcast, DHH talks about institutional and personal stances on tech privacy—and why individual action can actually lead to change when it comes to the big problems of our time. (A transcript is also available on the episode page.)
“Dreams shouldn’t be sensible.” In 2011, David and Clare Hieatt launched Hiut Denim in a small Welsh town that had been home to a jeans factory for 40 years. The Hieatts saw an opportunity to restore those lost jobs—and to do it in a way that fit with their ideas about building a sustainable business. In this episode of the Rework podcast, David Hieatt talks about taking the slow money; what it’s like when a mega celebrity endorses your brand; and his efforts to reduce the environmental impact of a ubiquitous item of clothing.
Basecamp has a new website and a new logo. If this is the first you’re hearing about it, it’s because we opted out of the big rebranding announcement that many companies undertake. There should be a post from Jason Fried forthcoming here on Signal v. Noise, but in the meantime, check out the latest episode of the Rework podcast. Jason and marketing designer Adam Stoddard talk about what prompted the new look and the laidback way it came together.
The Rework podcast is back from summer break! It’s time to get back to work, but it’s important not to overdo it. In this episode, Ty Fujimura, president of web design firm Cantilever, talks about how he escaped the Cult of Overwork; why it’s important to rethink the relationship between hours “worked” and actual productivity; and how establishing healthier patterns in the workplace has helped diversify his staff.
Pam Daniels had an idea to make an everyday household item—a set of measuring cups—more useful and fun. When her first plan to get her product into the world fell through, she found a different path. The latest episode of the Rework podcast tells the story of what it took to get one product launched.
A quick programming note: This is our last Rework episode until September, as we’re taking a short hiatus for the rest of August. During the break, we’ll play some reruns of the old (like ten years old!) 37signals podcast, so stay subscribed! We’ll be back with all-new episodes in September.
Basecamp’s new book, Shape Up by Ryan Singer, explores the way designers and programmers at the company build and ship software. In the latest episode of the Rework podcast, Ryan, designer Conor Muirhead, and programmer Jeff Hardy go deep into Shape Up principles, talking about the parts of the process they find most useful and sharing real-life examples of both successes and setbacks.
(If you haven’t yet read Shape Up or listened to last week’s interview with Ryan, it might be helpful to do that first. We’ve also linked to the relevant sections in Shape Up in the show notes for this episode if you’d like to follow along that way.)
Earlier this month, Basecamp released a new book by Ryan Singer, the head of strategy. Shape Up: Stop Running in Circles and Ship Work that Matters is a “spiritual follow-up” to Getting Real, Jason and David’s 2006 guide to how product development happens at Basecamp. In Shape Up, Ryan goes deep into how small teams get great work done in six-week cycles without sprints, Post-it Notes, stand-up meetings, backlogs, or long hours.
Ryan sits down with the Rework podcast to talk about some of the major themes in Shape Up and how the book came together as its own product.
Next week, we’ll bring you a roundtable discussion between Ryan, a designer, and a programmer at Basecamp to go deeper into the process described in Shape Up. Be sure to subscribe to Rework in Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, or your favorite podcast app so that you get the episode as soon as it’s released!
You may have noticed that Basecamp is in the midst of what qualifies around here as a mini hiring boom: five open positions across customer support, programming, and ops, as well as a newly created marketing role. The company has received more than 4,000 applications and every single one is read by a human being. In the latest episode of the Rework podcast, hear about why Basecamp briefly lifted its hiring freeze, how job ads are written, and what the process is for evaluating candidates.