#8 / On Working Hard, Cryptocurrency, Choosing the North Start and More

This newsletter is meant to be a carefully crafted recommendations of interesting things on the Internet, delivered straight to your inbox every Sunday.

Welcome to The Swipe File.

My goal is to continue to provide you with a hand-picked selection of ideas, books, and thought-provoking stuff to read, watch, and listen, but also mix in other compelling, inspirational, and fun material. I'm excited to try out a few ideas and hope I can count on your continuous support!

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Read, Listen, Watch

Paul Graham

How to Work Hard

"Once you know the shape of real work, you have to learn how many hours a day to spend on it. You can't solve this problem by simply working every waking hour, because in many kinds of work there's a point beyond which the quality of the result will start to decline." Read more


Lex Fridman

Vitalik Buterin: Ethereum, Cryptocurrency, and the Future of Money

Vitalik Buterin is co-creator of Ethereum and ether, which is a cryptocurrency that is currently the second-largest digital currency after bitcoin. Ethereum has a lot of interesting technical ideas that are defining the future of blockchain technology, and Vitalik is one of the most brilliant people innovating this space today.

Listen here


Lenny Rachitsky

Choosing Your North Star Metric

”Marketplaces and platforms make money from usage — the more consumption they drive within their platforms, the faster they grow. Marketplaces that take a cut of each transaction, like Airbnb, UberLyft, and Cameo, focus their NSM on the volume of transactions ”he story of how Amazon made them who they are now.” Read more



Jason Shen

How Great Writing Begins

”Without a good beginning, we will lose our readers to another tab in the browser, a message from a friend, or an impulse to check their email. We must learn to write beginnings that grab our readers and never let go, drawing them into our article and compelling them to read through to the end. ” Read more


Things I Learned this Week

Multi-discipline learning

There’s as much to learn about your field from other fields than there is within your field. Most professions, even ones that look wildly different, live under the umbrella of “Understanding how people respond to incentives, how to convincingly solve their problems, and how to work with others who are difficult to communicate with and/or disagree with you.” Once you see the roots shared by most fields you realize there’s a sink of information you’ve been ignoring that can help you make better sense of your own profession. I didn’t appreciate how important communication is to providing investment advice before reading about how many doctors struggle to communicate effectively with patients, leading to patients who don’t stick with treatment plans and are resistant to lifestyle change. There are millions of these dots to connect. Probing beyond the confines of your day job is more fun anyways.


Thanks for reading,

Samyak