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How can I apply for an internship at IIT Bombay?Full-scale guide to internship ahead. It will take 3 minutes.During my sophomore year( 2nd Year) of studies I did a lot of research on Internships, how to secure it and how to get a sure-shot success.I have compiled all the questions and how to work on themWhy should I do an internship?Ans: No, you don’t need to do one, internship are not burden that you should do. You can go and learn to play guitar, feel free to explore yourself during vacations.Internships are not only in Education, there are a heck lot of internships for Music, NGOs, Tutors, Dance(Yeah you heard it right). Now for all those in colleges( I mean study focused minded people), internships are a must ( yeah you heard me right, it is must- A recent update in rule suggested that you must have 3 internships).P.S. I have still done only one internship and still in search for 2 more (I completed my recent internship from France, CNRS).2. What internship should I do, I am confused?Ans: First of all you need to find your field of interest, it can be anything, yeah anything you like, it doesn’t depend on your course/career but on your interest.I have interest in Machine Learning , Computer Vision and Embedded Systems and I am in Electronics Branch.So, once you know about your field of interest you are perfect to go ahead to search for an internship.How to find my field of interest? Refer here : “How do I find out what my actual area of interest is?”3. Where to search an Internship and how to proceed?Ans: GOOGLE , it’s all.Nothing can help you more than google. Let me be clear, never go for sites like Internshala,Letsintern,InternXXX (I am not devoting this site, these sites have all startups and local companies and jobs that won’t help your enrichment rather will prepare you for 9–5 jobs believe me, I have experience) before searching them on your own.4. What are per-requisites? What should I have? A good SOP? A good CV?Ans: I will focus on basic things to keep in Mind.a. A good balance between CGPA and Skills will help you a lot. Don’t worry,if you don’t have a good CGPA, you must be talented with so many things then( Guitar, Singing, Dance—- yeah buddy you are talented.)b. Your focus in career, I mean what you want to pursue further.Just make a list of 4–5 topics you want to pursue further.c. Compile a list of projects you have done until the time you are going to fill the form.Put all the details about the project, how it works, under whom you have done it, what is its benefit.Projects can be anything: Have you created an applications based on your interest, a cool DIY project, an electronic game, a computer program—it entirely depends on your choice.I created aa TIC TAC TOE game and I quote it in my CV.d. List of your training and online MOOCs, if you did anything.(I am a regular user of Coursera, udemy, udacity, and edx.I keep on learning new things).Just mention these MOOCs and training wherever you get space.If you have certificates, feel free to include their links.e. The workshops, seminars you have attended.Do you know- Your curricular labs may add a lot to your form, but how? Suppose you are interested in Digital Signal Processing, and you attended Digital Signal Processing lab and gained 10/10, Go on quote it in the form.f. A Good Statement of purpose, describing what is your interest.g. A resume for yourself (max 2 pages).5. What is a good Statement of Purpose and How to make it? How to make a good resume?Ans: Follow here: How to write a successful SOP , How to Write a Statement of PurposeRest you can post your questions in comment section for some-specific field in SOP, CV.6. When should I start to search for an Internship for Institute and Well-known Companies?Ans : When Should I Apply for Summer Internships?, Most of the interships application begin from late December till Feb beginning.For institute specific internships, there are two waya) Fill the application form of the Internship Advertisement.b) Mail the professor.The application form is different for different Institute, regarding the mailing procedure - I will like to quote an answer:( Source : Tuhin Kundu answer)While writing a mail to an IIT professor, some blueprints and strategies should be kept in mind:Show your proven academic record. Your chances increase manifold if your CGPA is >9.0 Not to lose hope if you haven’t got it. Neither did I.Showcase the major projects you have undertaken in your undergrad till date.Share links everywhere in your resume and cover letter. Links to your LinkedIn, ResearchGate, Codechef, SPOJ, Github etc are pretty useful.Upload your project reports to a cloud storage such as Google Drive and share the links in your resume.The mail you are going to write is the most critical part and is usually known as a cover letter. Professors are only going to open and see your resume only if your cover letter is strong.Talk about the technologies you’ve learned, the projects you’ve done or are doing, the collaborations you have undertaken with professors at your own college in your cover letter. This section is the one that convinces the professor of your credibility.Avoid attaching your CV in your mail.Upload your CV in Google Drive and share the links. Emails from unknown sources usually end up in Junk folder of university emails.Make sure your email stays at top.Email professors late at night such that your email will be somewhere at the top when the professor logs in into his email account in the morning.Talk about your inclination and motivation to work under a certain area/domain. Convince the professor about why you want to work in that certain field.Repeatedly spamming a professor will be of no good.Filter out the professors who match your research interest. Mailing every single professor of the entire department may result into marking your email address as a spammer by the institute email filter.An example of mail to professor can be:( Source : Rahul Goradia Answer)Subject : Regarding Internship in Embedded SystemRespected Prof.____________Sir/Madam,I am ——- from ——— pursuing ___________ and willing to do internship under ______________ posted on website for duration _____.Sir/Ma’am, You are working in ________ domain and you have carried out ______ projects. You also take interns in embedded Systems.I am wish to start internship under our guidance. My curriculum includes ____ related subjects to embedded system. I have completed __________ projects. I will be available during whole internship and will be very sincere throughout internship. (You can add reference of your faculty as well.)It will be a great pleasure to work under you.Sincerely————.Now let us focus on my IIT Bombay Internship.Actually I received internship offer from IIT Bombay, IIT Gandhinagar and IIIT-Delhi in my 2nd Year.Focusing on IIT Bombay Internship.The IIT Bombay has two ways of internship1) Ekalavya Internship Program **EKALAVYA HOME Page (EKALAVYA HOME Page)2) By mailing to the professor of your field of interest.Let me describe both one by one and all things which you requireThe Ekalavy internship mentioned : Apply for the internship only if you are completing the 3rd year in April/May 2017. Students completing 2nd year, with exceptional academic performance and other achievements may also be considered.The procedure for ekalavya internship,a) Apply for the internship.b) If you get selected for the first round.Then wait my friend , there is one round more.c) The second round is an Online Test, I was guided a lot by my seniors for the test, they helped me a lot for the test preparation.d) If you clear the online test( which has medium difficulty), congo you got selected.In order to get an internship by emailing the professor, you can look on etiquettes on how to mail a prof., how to search for one, how to get in touch.I will add links to the mailing etiquettes soon.I will edit more details soon, rest you can comment on specific topics which you want to know about, I will be happy to help.I am a student majoring in Electronics and Communication branch.Also, let me add, your present college won’t stop you from getting an Intern anywhere ( A motivation for you).Edit 1:The Art of Emailing Professors to Secure a Foreign Internship ( Source : Internshala )Email is the most under-rated, under-used tool for grabbing an internship abroad. Read all about how to utilize it effectively!There are two definitive ways to bag an internship-1. Apply to various internship programs such as MITACS, DAAD-WISE, etc. Fill up your application form in the fanciest way possible and leave the rest up to fate.OR2. Write an email to a professor as a prospective intern/student.The latter might sound easier than it reads.Being resilient: Professors are busy people. Do not lose hope if your first, second or even third email goes unanswered. You have to be resilient while contacting professors.Timing matters: The time you send out your mail matters more than you think. Never email a professor during the weekends or Friday night; that might be a convenient time for you to email the professor but it is also the professor’s day off and your mail will get buried under the numerous other student’s applications. Professors tend to check their mail during their office hours thus increasing chances of a reply if sent out at such a time.Whom not to contact: It is advisable not to contact more than one professor from the same department as, if found out, it will dampen your credibility in the eyes of both professors.Be specific: I cannot stress on this point enough. In the subject heading of email, be sure to include the specific area you want to intern in. The professor shouldn’t have to scour through the email to search for what you want . If you want to do a research project under him/her, a subject line such as ‘2015 Prospective Research Intern for xyz subject area’ would be ideal.Funding: Most professors are reluctant to provide funding and understandably so; you are an unknown candidate with only words to prove your credibility. Typing out a politely worded, technical email will help your chances. Make sure there are no grammatical errors. If you are good at academia with prior work experience pertaining to their field, then getting funded becomes much easier.The email is all about you being a student that the professor absolutely HAS to offer a position. The real question you should ask yourself is: What can I do to make the professor respond to my mail instead of ten dozen others lying in his/her inbox? Here’s what-Start Early: Consider this. You contact professors in October for an internship that starts in January. Provided one responds, confirmation of a project takes time. There are official procedures to be considered, especially if it’s a funded project. Then there might be a matter of VISA which needs a few weeks at the least. In the end, you might find yourself racing against time to get the confirmation.TIP: If you want an internship offer by January of next year, you should start with your research six months ahead. Keep in mind the vacation timings for the countries you are targeting because most professors will have their automatic vacation responders on during these months. By the time they read their mail, yours will be more than twenty thousand leagues under all other emails.Target the right country: If you desire an international internship, you have to be smart while choosing universities. Some professors just don’t have the funds to admit you. So what’s the point in setting up base camp there?TIP: At the outset, select countries which are known to provide funding to students. For example, news and statistics show that of late, Canada is an emerging tycoon in the education sector and is allocating massive funds to projects. So it could very well be your next destination.Spam emails: Most emails from unknown addresses are flagged as spam and don’t even signNow the inbox. Professors also can’t be sure whether you are truly a student or a fake.TIP: One smart preventive measure would be to use your university email ID which identifies your first and last name and also has something like ‘@iitg’ or some such credible ending. This validates both points at once.Bulk emails: A lot of students have a huge list of professors and play chance with their emails. Writing a bulk email with a set format to all professors will only result in immediate deletion from inbox.TIP: Spell the professor’s name correctly. Get the honorifics right- Professors are usually ‘Dr.’. Salutations such as ‘Dear Dr.X’ or simply ‘Dr.X’ should be used. Write about what interests you in their body of work.Do your homework: Professing interest in someone’s work by saying ‘I would be really enthused to work under you’ has absolutely no bearing unless you give evidence to support it.TIP: Run through the body of work the professor has done, select one publication or project that overlaps with your interest and READ IT. Come up with some interesting insight or query about it. Don’t be vague, use technical words. Try to add your own ideas. Nothing proves your interest more than actually doing your homework.I recently bagged my Latest 2018 Summer Internship in “France- Paris ,Lille”.I will love to share it’s detail along with 30+ Internships that a “first year student too can fill and achieve”.Meanwhile, you can ping me on Facebook or ask your questions in the comment section for any help.(facebook : Animesh Srivastava ).Thanks for all the sources:https://blog.internshala.com/201...Tuhin KunduRahul GarodiaHappy to help you all ! Cheers for an amazing life.
Is the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong dead?Don’t think so. As long as there is proof of funding coming from the NED. The umbrella movement will morph into different guises. The NED will not rest and will harp on issues that is inherent in the Beijing backed government.One of the long standing problems in HK is that the government isn’t addressing the needs of the masses and catering only to the rich. The housing problem is a good example.Young people have no means of being able to afford housing in HK and may have to move into cities like Shenzhen or Guangzhou. This can be addressed by the HSR system being built to connect mainland China to HK. The HSR has got structural problems. These needs to be quickly addressed. At this time, these are still being ironed out.There is good and bad to this travel principle. Even though the travel time is short, between 15mins to 30 mins. The people of HK will have to learn to assimilate with mainlanders when they live there. This includes speaking Mandarin, which for the younger generation isn’t a big problem as they have been taught this in school, along with the ability to read and write in simplified Chinese instead of the traditional script used in HK.It is up to individual HKers to adapt to these demands.In one way, Beijing is forcing the masses to move across to the mainland to live while at the same time forcing them to assimilate. This is not a bad thing but in the eyes of the older generation of HKers, it is nothing more than a method to force a change through economic means.The NED will find it hard to fund the umbrella movement if all the young decides to assimilate into the mainland.The NED’s agenda is to disrupt the existing government with calls for democracy, which to the mainland Chinese is just a futile attempt to peddle a long disproven form of government that doesn’t bring economic benefit.India, which is the world’s most open form of democracy is mired with economic woes. Authoritarian democracy as practised by the American system only creates a ruling class of capitalist while marginalising the middle class.Only socialist democracies are the most successful as can be seen by the Scandinavian model but his goes against the grain on what the NED believes in.
What is product management?Product management is an important organizational role. Product managers are typically found at companies that are building products or technology for customer or internal use. This role evolved from the brand manager position that is often found at consumer packaged goods companies (see History below).The product manager is often considered the CEO of their product and is responsible for the strategy, roadmap, and feature definition for that product or product line. The position may also include marketing, forecasting, and profit and loss (P&L) responsibilities.The product manager often analyzes market and competitive conditions and lays out a product vision that is differentiated and delivers unique value based on customer demands. The role of product management spans activities from strategic to tactical.At its best, product management provides cross-functional leadership — bridging gaps within the company between different functions, most notably between engineering-oriented teams, sales and marketing, and support.HistoryThe product management role was originally created as a brand management position. It was initially defined by a New York advertiser during the Great Depression. In 1931, Neil McElroy wrote a memo to Proctor & Gamble. The young ad executive proposed the idea of a "brand man" — an employee to manage a specific product rather than serving a traditional business role.This concept of product ownership is at the core of product management as practiced today. McElroy spoke about product ownership in a marketing context. He wanted "brand men" to "take full responsibility, not simply for criticizing individual pieces of printed word copy, but also for the general printed word plans for his brands."McElroy's memo struck a nerve. Many firms adopted brand management for the next half century. This practice came to be known as consumer product management. Its principles were adopted as the software market grew during the 1980s.This was due in large part to brand managers embodying the role of teacher. McElroy followed his work at P&G — where he went on to become President — with positions as President of Harvard and Advisor at Stanford. His work at Stanford led him to meet David Packard and Bill Hewlett.Brand management knowledge became so coveted that many brand managers were recruited by tech firms for their deep product knowledge and sense of ownership. Intuit Founder Scott Cook was a brand manager at P&G before building one of history's most successful software companies. He applied his skills in a very different context at Intuit. But his end goal — to focus on understanding, delivering, and polishing user experience — remained paramount.Gaps between engineering and marketing widened in the 1990s. Companies like Microsoft were rapidly expanding — but they faced challenges as they scaled software development. Engineers did not have processes to keep up with customer demand or speak directly with customers about their concerns. Nor did they have time to collaborate with sales and marketing teams responsible for revenue growth.A gap between them needed to be bridged — and product managers became the ones to do it."Good product managers take full responsibility and measure themselves in terms of the success of the product." These words from the classic Ben Horowitz memo epitomize product management and what companies expect from their product leaders today.ResponsibilitiesThere are a few core responsibilities common to most product management roles inside both established enterprise companies and at startups. Most often a product manager is responsible for understanding customer requirements, defining and prioritizing them, and working with the engineering team to build them. Setting strategy and defining the roadmap is often considered to be inbound work and bringing the product to market is often considered to be "outbound."It is important to understand the differences between inbound and outbound product management because a great product manager has the diverse set of skills to do both well. Inbound product management involves gathering customer research, competitive intelligence, and industry trends as well as setting strategy and managing the product roadmap.Outbound product management involve product marketing responsibilities such as: messaging and branding, customer communication, new product launches, advertising, PR, and events. Depending on the organization these roles can be performed by the same person or two different people or groups that work closely together.Product Strategy and Definition (Inbound)Strategy and visionCustomer interviewsDefining features and requirementsBuilding roadmapsRelease managementGo-to-resource for engineeringSales and support trainingProduct Marketing and Go-to-Market (Outbound)Competitive differentiationPositioning and messagingNaming and brandingCustomer communicationProduct launchesPress and analyst relationsCertificationsThere are some options for those interested in becoming a product manager or improving their existing skills. They include:Pragmatic Marketing: Pragmatic Marketing has educated more than 100,000 product managers and marketers since 1993. They eschew theory in favor of practice — their instructors have worked at the UN, IBM, Microsoft, and more. Their courses implement "The Pragmatic Marketing Framework" — a blueprint for key activities from product planning through go-to-market launches.General Assembly: General Assembly was founded by Jake Schwartz in 2011. Their courses range from one-night seminars to 10-week immersives. 14 campuses across 4 continents teach students at all career levels the most relevant 21st century skills — including product management. One of GA's most popular courses is their 10-week product management immersive.Demand for product managers has increased over the past decade. Training programs and educational materials are quickly being offered and developed to support product managers who are looking to master the craft.But today, product management is an apprenticeship — and educational options still reflect that. The role remains one that many professionals often stumble into and learn as they go.
How do I get a licensing deal for patents?I would suggest compiling a list of mop manufacturers that would be interested in your product. Googling keywords is always a wise first step. You could also try your local library, which should have some resources helpful for your search. After spending ample time researching possible suitors, it’s time to write a business plan. The United States Small Business Association provides a free guide on how to “Write Your Business Plan.” As you can see, it is a pretty hefty project to undertake though!I think you should take a look at what we have to offer at LawTrades. Inventors don’t always possess the greatest business IQ so bringing in a lawyer to help represent you during precious licensing negotiations can save you money in the long run. We have helped many entrepreneurs connect with talented, affordable commercial and patent attorneys. Simply visit our site, fill out a short form, and sit back for a free on-demand price quote from us. Feel free to shoot me a message with any questions you have.Good luck!
What are the common mistakes that seed-funded startup founders make?I raised $500,000 at 19. I was on my way to change the world. Three years later everything burned down.This post is not about how to shoot for the stars or run a company. Others are better at that.This is about what not to do.I’ve made every mistake possible. But ironically, I’m constantly meeting teams doing the exact same things that caused my first startup to implode. Everything I’m writing about I’ve experienced first hand through my own startups as well as various businesses I’ve been involved in. It’s been all my fault and this is my story.Some of you will disagree with me. Others will have things to add. I’m happy to discuss in the comments.Here’s my attempt.ZUCKERBERG SYNDROMMy girlfriend didn’t know what I was working on for nine months. I slept with a chair blocking the front door. My phone was tapped. Corporate America and Uncle Sam were listening. Someone was going to kill me to steal the idea.I really believed this. So I did everything possible (literally) to avoid getting feedback out of the fear of having our idea stolen.Ultimately, secrecy and stupidity killed us. Three years and hundreds of thousands later, we released an alpha version to a modest 30 people for the first time. Everyone hated it. Our capital was gone. Our morale: zero.I see this all the time. Startup founders hiding their ideas because of the fear that someone will steal it. Remember: no one cares about you. Your biggest issue is getting discovered. If someone steals your idea, that means you’re doing something right.Because of this syndrome, most startups are wasting their time and money building products no one wants. Why? Lack of testing. The biggest mistake a company can make (product wise) is to avoid talking to and testing with potential and current users. Every day. It’s also one of the main reasons startup’s fail.If you’re not constantly releasing and looking for feedback you’re either a) delusional (me) thinking too many people will sign up/buy your product and you won’t be able to scale b) scared that it’s not good enough (me) or c) someone will steal your idea (as I was).A. SCALING“Your priority, in short, is proving that people will use your product at all. If they won’t, then it won’t matter if you can’t scale. If they will, then you will figure out a way to scale. I’ve never seen a startup die because it couldn’t scale fast enough. I’ve seen hundreds of startups die because people refused to embrace their product.” — Guy Kawasaki [Emphasis mine]I’ve done this and I’ve experienced this in the past three startups I’ve worked in. It’s completely delusional. If five out of five people tell you that they wouldn’t use your product (before you build), quit. If eight out of ten people tell you that they hate this feature and you empirically see that they’re not using it, kill it. Don’t assume. Always be testing.More on feedback below.b. TESTINGSee point A.C. STEALING(!)No one will steal your idea. It takes time, money, skills and immorality to steal. Not everyone is born that lucky.Most importantly, no one cares about your idea.They’ll only start caring when there’s a massive amount of initial traction (50,000+ users). By then, you’ve already established a strong user/customer base and it’s too late for the others.HIRING FOR WEAKNESSOnly hire for a strength that needs to be filled in your company. Never for a weakness.Not once did any of the startups I worked in hire for a strength. I repetitively recommended hiring people purely out of loneliness, fear and scarcity repetitively. Each time it sunk us deeper.But what does that mean?Hiring for a weakness means that you attempt to fill a weakness in the fundamenetals in your company by hiring for a weakness. Example: If you’re building a product and it’s not gaining traction and your company doesn’t have inherent fundamentals, hiring Ryan Holiday to sell your product won’t help. You can’t fight weakness with weakness.However, if you have a rockstar engineering team and you want to add a marketing person to help take the product get to another level, then you’re adding a strength.Hiring for weakness also means:a. You hire a B+ player instead of a A+ player.b. You hire people so that they go through the struggle with you, so that they share your fears and paranoia. Not so they execute on what’s needed.c. Hiring someone to fill a position. Not to compliment the rest of the company.d. Hiring someone and not having any idea of what the hell you want them to do.e. It means hiring someone because you think there’s no one else. Scarcity.f. Hiring a client’s friend. Because you’re scared.It’s ultimately about the fundamentals. If the fundamentals of the product and the team aren’t there, adding someone is just adding a weakness. It won’t help, because it’s not a strength.PAINTER’S DILEMMAApproving emails? One week treks. Our first wireframes? $40K and four months. Did we have a working product after all this? No. We failed.The Painter’s Dilemma is when you’re so deep in the details of your project that you don’t even know what the idea is anymore. You’re blind. When you’re too deep you need help.How to solve it? Stop. Talk to people. Get feedback. Iterate and build. Release. Breathe.Repeat the loop.The more feedback you get the healthier you and your product are.FEEDBACK*I can’t emphasize this enough. If you don’t get feedback (everyday) you will die. I never got feedback. EVER. Well, until the cash ran out. Oops.If you’re not getting qualitiative and quantitive feedback/data everyday, the cancer will start.It’s easy: speak to people, Google Analytics, send surveys. Just don’t hide from it.*This is the crucial and worth a dedicated blog post in the future.COMMUNICATE“Don’t talk to him, he doesn’t understand. He’s out of the picture next funding round anyways.” I hid everything internally. It was easy, we were in 5 different countries! Our developers were remote (I’ll get to that) and Basecamp was our only means of communication. In other startups, I wouldn’t included people from discussions because “it isn’t necessary. That isn’t their job”New features, awful designs, conniving plans were all pushed through a funnel. I was the leader of the deceiving. Architecting a blue print to push my own delusional “never test and succeed” agenda. My style? The longer the email the less likely someone important will read it. What a strategy. As always, the CEO is the biggest idiot.I don’t care if you’re a church, a tech startup or a non-profit. If you don’t have a system of communication in place that keeps everyone aware of what everyone is doing in the company, in real-time, for every milestone, everyday, you will die very soon.Lesson: Live and breath Scrum.SCREW LAWYERSLawyers are criminals.I spent $15,000 on legal documents/fees we never used. Every entrepreneur/startup I’m involved with thinks lawyers are the first step to success. Bullshit.DOCSAll the legal documents you ever need are available online. If you’re B2B, all companies that you’ll work with have their own standard LOEs, NDAs, etc., that they anyways steal from Fortune 500 companies. Request it. Then use it. B2C? Here.BUT I NEED A TRADEMARK!Unless you have 10,000 clients you don’t need to think about copyright or even the name. Prove the concept first. Worry later. If you do have to worry, those are very nice worries to have.PATENT IT!Patenting something that isn’t validated with at least 10,000 clients is moronic. Ironically, this is the only mistake my first startup didn’t follow through with (fully, at least).DECISION MAKINGI was traumatized from taking decisions. Most startups never take decisions. In other statups I work in, decisions took weeks. People join startups for the reason of avoiding bureaucracy but everyone still does it. Why? Lack of trust and overview of the team, so they choke the process (have I suggested Scrum?).The board should decide on the vision and the group should decide what to execute on by creating a backlog for the week. The team should then have the power to execute it. With a great communication process in place, teammates should be able to take decisions without reporting to anyone while keeping everyone updated with everything’s that going on, live. Have a flat structure to achieve this by using Scrum.Let people do their jobs. Trust them. Don’t have a tedious review process as most startups do. Don’t suffocate the system. Empower your people.Read Scrum by Jeff Sutherland on how to manage your team. Then read Team of Teams by General Stanley McChrystal for how to organize the information flow. Both books compliment each other perfectly.THE BOARDThe ideal board is 3–5 people maximum if you’re a startup. Anything above that means that either no decisions will ever be taken (my first company) or someone has a hidden agenda and profits from a discombobulated board.A business is not a democracy. Unanimous decisions don’t work and will never work.Who’s should I put on the Board?Only investors/shareholders who hold a large stake and are extremely active in the success of your venture.INVESTORSSmart Money vs Still MoneyJust because someone is offering you cash almost always means you shouldn’t accept it.Your investor can have the greatest contacts in the pharmecutical industry. She can be CEO of Merck. If she doesn’t have a massive network in whatever industry you’re in, it’s worthless. The money will be worth nothing. This is true 100% of the time.Always onboard investors that can help you in your niche industry.MEETINGSThis is my top 3 favorites. Most won’t agree with me on this.I’ve never been to a meeting that has made me money/funded my venture. I don’t think anyone has. Has anyone ever handed you a check at a meeting? I doubt it. Today, it usually happens by wire-transfer.Meetings are pointless. Every team I meet, consult for/work with all think that going to meetings is the most crucial part of business. Most importantly, the whole team should be there. Pick up the fucking phone. Travel is time and money expensive. Even if you’re taking a cab.I would fly 10,000 miles for a 3 hour meeting and then fly back to Europe that same day. $30K. Gone.“If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be: ‘meetings.’” - Dave BarryMost of the discussion can be ironed out over email and FaceTime.Ok yes, I agree. Meeting in person is important. But not until it’s necessary. Most of the time, it’s unecessary. And even when it is, it shouldn’t always be an excuse to leave work for a business lunch or to Shanghai for the day.Avoid meetings. Get more done.It’s a waste of time 99% of the time.FOUNDING PARTNERS = YOUR SPOUSEYou will be married to your partners and investors for the next 7–10 years. Choose wisely.Know your team. Speak to your investor’s enemies. Get references for everyone.Don’t be a deceiver. Use Scrum.WORKING HOURSWe worked 16 hour days. Yey! Startup life!No. Work 8–10 hours and you’ll get more done than working 18 hours a day. Don’t believe me. It’s proven.Working 18 hour days leads to a burn out, which leads to painter’s dilemma, then delusion, then deceiving others around you, then depression. Then it’s too late.Ultimately, the more you work the more mistakes you’re prone to make. Mistakes made are mistakes that need to be corrected. Mistakes that aren’t correct can take up to 24x longer to correct than if they were corrected immediately.But you can’t see that. You’re burned out. You’re in Painter.PRODUCT / MARKET VALIDATIONAnother reason I refused to test in the three product startups I was involved in was because “the ideas work successfully elsewhere. They will also work here.” Doesn’t work like that.Just because you’re making a mishmash of several products that have product/market validation elsewhere doesn’t mean people are willing to use your product. I have yet to meet a new founder who hasn’t claimed this.In order for someone to switch to your product, your product needs to be at least 8x better.*Is your product really 8x better than your biggest competitor? If the answer isn’t a clear yes, quit.*Read Hooked by Nir Eyal and Ryan Hoover for how to build habit forming products.RECREATING THE WHEEL“God gave you eyes, so plagarize.” -Michael LewisNo need to re-create the wheel. Everything is out there already for a reason. Use APIs, read books (many books), steal functions, designs, ideas, marketing slogans, branding, on boarding processes, software, colors, clients, everything from other people/companies who are successful.This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t test it in your own environment. You must validate every single function that you put out there. Use the Lean Startup KanBan by Ash Maurya for this.DILUTIONWe gave away 51% for our first funding round. How much did we plan to keep when we “exited?” Think about that. It doesn’t make sense.Startups do this all the time. If you retain 51% after the seed round, how much does the founding team plan to keep by Series B? 20%? If you take the average of what you got paid for equity after the exit + your salary you’ll be paying more in taxes with a minimum wage paycheck for the past 8 years it took you to exit. Might as well work in a shoe store.If you don’t have the bargaining power (a validated product) to raise money with, quit.GUYS IN SUITSOur tech partners wore suits. That made us comfortable. They ended up quoting $100k. We ended up with nothing.If you see tech people in suits, run.OUTSOURCINGI lost well over $100,000 for our first version that was outsourced. We were smart enough to not learn from our mistakes so we found another team to outsource with. Another hefty sum gone. Only myself to blame.I’ve had terrible experiences with outsourcing and great experiences with in-house development.However, many products (we all use everyday) have found great success in outsourcing. I also know many entrepreneurs who outsource and are extremely succesful. While there are massive benefits, there are also downfalls. If you plan to, find a free consulting company that has pre-screened teams.Either way, using Scrum increases your chances of success in-house or out.YOUR TEAMEntrepreneurs read about Steve Jobs’ management style and think he was a tyrant. So they curse at their employees and tell everyone that they are “shit.” They think that’s how a company should be run and that’s how teammates should be treated. Wrong. Treat your team like shit and you’ll get shit.Either way, that’s not how Steve Jobs did it. Steve Jobs empowered his team. He told them that what they’re outputting is shit because he knew that they could do better. Because they are the best in the industry. He made them feel good. He challenged them and today Apple is Apple because of that.On the other hand, I lied. Didn’t speak about the hard things and repressed whatever fear or worry we had. We were scared that someone would quit or that we would look bad if we showed our emotions in front of our investors.You should always be able to tell your teammates all the fears and worries you have. Chances are, if you’re worried about something, everyone is worried about the same thing. Bring it up. Talk about it. I keep mentioning Scrum* because it encourages team members telling each other what’s bothering them and what’s impending the growth progress. This is key to not failing.Not once, in any of the startups I was in, did I or others get credit for great work or for their ideas that ended up being implemented. Not once did anyone congratualte a teammate on a engineering triumph, a beautiful design or a new lead. Startups think “business is business. This isn’t a cute place to pat each other on the backs.”BUT THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT A BUSINESS SHOULD BE. You should be holding each other up, helping one another and listening to the problems in the team. Because ultimately, you’re on the same mission.The second the negativity flows in people become scared. They stop raising issues, telling you how they feel and how to improve the business. When that happens you start to slowly die because you’ve fell into dillusion that everything is working. Six months later, you’re on the street.Empower your team. Congratulate people. Love each other. When someone screws up, tell them that. But also tell them how to improve and ask them why they think they screwed up and how to make their job easier.You’re a team. Be one.*Believe it or not, I’m not affiliated with Scrum in anyway. I’m not even a Scrum Master.—When I reflect on all the stupidity I’ve personally done and the startups I’ve been involved in, I realize that the only thing I ever followed up through and executed with absolute perfection, were the things that eventually ended up killing us: not telling a soul what our idea was. Talking to lawyers. Partnering with bad teams. Hiring out of weakness. Going to too many meetings. No decision making system. Not using Scrum. Hiring people out of fear. Hiding from reality.Mistakes are simple to make but hard to correct. They’re usually the first option that pops up. But as entrepreneurs we do thing because they’re hard, not because they’re easy.Hard choices take a long time to get right. It takes guts, intuition, experience and lots of luck. But never settle. Never accept your situation.Life can always be better.…..This was originally posted on the NY Observer and our blog on Penta.Follow me @lukaivicev or contact me directly at email@example.com.
How can we fight against the NRA regarding gun control?Are you sure that the NRA is the problem?Oh, I know that the media and the talking heads are all making them out to be some 500 lb gorilla and the reason psychos shoot up school yards, but have you ever bothered to look into the matter beyond the headlines?I’ll give you an example. In 2017, the push was for a “Universal Background Check”. The idea was to be sure that people buying guns were not criminals. Believe it or not, the NRA wholly supports this and in fact was involved with creating the current NICS (National Instant Check System) that is used.But the bill that was proposed was not what you heard in the media. First, it would not plug any “Gunshow Loophole” because there is no such thing. The only sales at a gun show that the bill covered was private sales. Of course, private sales can occur anywhere, not just gun shows.But the bill didn’t make the NICS easier for private sales. They just required all private sales to be conducted through a licensed dealer. Had this actually passed, a gun show would be an ideal location for such sales as there would be access to many dealer. In effect, you would greatly increase the number of private sales at a gun show by this law.So, what is involved with a sale through a dealer? Well, the dealer would have to do the following:1) Record the transfer in their bound book. This is a book where all the transactions of a firearm is recorded via that dealer. The book is auditable by the BATF and many dealers have faced fines for poorly kept records, so many dealers go to great pains to keep their book neat and accurate.2) Fill out the federal form 4473. This is required by all dealer sales of both new and used guns. It asks for the buyer’s name, address, the make and model of the gun, serial number, and then asks a bunch of questions. The dealer can get fined if the person fills out the form wrong. For example, answering a question with “Y” or “N” instead of “Yes” or “No” is a BATF violation. So the dealer has to carefully examine the form for errors and have the person fill out another if errors are found.3) The dealer then calls into the NICS. NICS can come back with a “Proceed”, “Denied” or “Delay”. A delay can take up to 3 days. Typically this is a name that appears similar to a Prohibited Person and requires some research. If this happens, the transfer is on hold. The dealer has no idea when the result of the research is likely to finish. If you are at a gun show, the show could be over before the approval is made.4) All this signNowwork, verification, etc takes time. Time is money. So dealers charge for this service. It is typical for a dealer to charge $25-$40 per gun, but sometimes multiple guns get a discount because the dealer can process up to 4 on a single form, but when more than one gun is transferred, the dealer has to fill out Form 3310 which is supposed to help with gun trafficking.All of this is well and good if you are buying a gun from someone you don’t know and many people will require sales be conducted at a dealer for the piece of mind such protections provide. But friends and family typically do not bother with the hassle and expense.One thing you need to realize is that to get a gun dealer license is not an easy process. Since the federal government cracked down on so called “kitchen table” dealers back in the 1980’s, you now must show a commercially zoned storefront with posted business hours to qualify. Many communities don’t want gun shops, and use zoning laws to make them difficult or unattractive. For example the city of Boston does not have any dealers. In fact, the nearest dealer is 3 towns away. Many rural areas don’t have the traffic to keep a dealer in business and you’ll find they are typically only open in the evening or on a Saturday as they work another full time job. Keep this in mind as we get into the next issue.But the bill didn’t stop at sales. It stated that ALL transfers had to be done in this manner. No exceptions. So, two friends out on a hunt would need to go through the whole process listed above just to swap guns for the afternoon. Oh, and they would have to do it all again to give the gun back. It is very common on a range to try out other people’s guns - such a thing would also require the full transfer and back process. Demo guns at a national event by manufacturers? Same thing.Basically any time a gun were to swap hands, the law would apply. There are private shooting clubs where guns are treated like library books and members take whatever they want. Families regularly swap guns. Heck, some shooting courses provide guns for students to use. All of these events would have been impacted by these new transfer requirements.The NRA balked at this. Essentially the rule would curtail many of the traditions and practices that are very common and virtually never result in any kind of criminal activity. In essence it would criminalize things that simply are not crimes.Not only would it create criminals where no criminal intent existed, but the cost to manage the volume of temporary transfers, the staffing needed to take the calls and do the checks would have cost millions each year. All money that would not go toward actually dealing with criminals.When the issue was brought up, many members of Congress agreed the requirements were too restrictive and the whole bill failed to pass. The supporters of the bill did not even attempt to listen to the complaints and work out a manageable fix.Did you hear any of that in the media?But what about catching criminals?Well, the bill didn’t change anything in regards to enforcing the rules to make sure the people who should not own guns were properly entered into NICS. In fact, other than maybe getting fired, there is NO PENALTY for failing to report a person. We have laws that will jail a teacher or coach that fail to report bullies. We have laws that put priests in prison who fail to report potential inappropriate behaviors in other clergy. But we do not have any laws that punish law enforcement agents that fail to do their job and make sure that dangerous people are reported to the background system. And this bill made no effort to change that.NICS is not open to anyone but federally licensed gun dealers. The left are so worried that the system might be used to check people for things other than guns that they refuse to create a means to allow people to verify someone they are selling a gun to. It would be easy to create an app that takes a photo of the buyer and seller’s ID (or just their faces and type in some data) and then return a simple “Proceed” or “Deny” with no other details. You’d have plenty of information to audit for illegal use. And if someone didn’t have an ID, they could then use a dealer. Heck, you can’t file taxes on-line without submitting some kind of ID, so this isn’t anything unique.And yet, the bill did nothing to address the issue of accessing the NICS for easier private sales.Here is the thing. We have 20,000 gun laws in this country. On the federal side, a prohibited person touching a gun could see them in prison for a minimum of 5 years. And yet, we still see cities with high violent crime rates that have virtually no federal cases. Why isn’t law enforcement using those stiff federal laws to get the violent people off the streets? Such a program called “Project Exile” worked wonders in Richmond, VA to reduce violent crime dramatically.OK, back to the “Universal Background Check” bill.I spent a lot of words above explaining what the bill would have required of people and why the situation would have been a nightmare. You never saw any of this in the news and the media pretty much ignored the issue.When the bill was defeated, it was never reported that a “terrible bill that would have cost millions and made criminals out of the innocent was defeated”, instead, all you ever heard was“The NRA used its influence to defeat the Universal Background Check bill that would have closed the gunshow loophole”Almost everything about that statement is false.So, be careful what you want to “Fight Against”. I suspect that most of what you think about the NRA is highly biased due to the way the organization is treated in the media. When you look at the actual facts, many times their concerns are quite valid. And, they have a lot of rank and file law enforcement on their side which helps them represent real world situations. I’ve found their positions in many cases very well presented. Most of the arguments you get on TV news are highly edited and taken out of context to promote an agenda, not facilitate a debate.Make sure you know what you are fighting for. You might be surprised.
Top paid developers at Valve produce 4000 lines of code daily (according to Gabe Newell), but what do you think is the norm in the industry?Let’s use a bit of logic and a bit of math here.4,000 lines of code in 8 hours is 500 lines of code per hour.500 lines of code per hour is 8 1/3 lines of code per MINUTE.The fastest typist ever recorded was clocked at just over 212–216 WPM (words per minute) in a burst, but only 150 WPM for extended periods of typing. (And during her Guinness record-breaking trial she needed periodic breaks that weren’t computed.)But that was a world champion typist, and most professional typists are happy to see half of her 150 WPM, and accomplish 75 WPM for prolonged days of working. (A “very good” typist can bang out up to 120 WPM in bursts, but rarely does two-thirds of that over prolonged periods.)If we assume that a typical line of code is composed of just five “words,” then ONLY PROFESSIONAL TYPISTS could type that many lines of code without using automated tools AND heavy amounts of copy paste, or conversion from pre-written code in some other format, like pseudo-code, or converting Java to C++ (for example.)And bear in mind that a “line” of code might look like:SettingsManager::instance()->disableAutologout(oldAutologoutStatus);(which I just wrote). That’s four “words” plus punctuation, and yet three of the four “words” there are composed of SEVERAL English language words that a top-rated typist might type, so that I would say this one line of code was really TEN English words (plus punctuation - which is a very important part of the programming not included in this count):Settings
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How long should an Eagle Scout project take?Three Months to Eagle It's time to begin work on some important documents: Your Scout should start writing up the project report, including a detailed breakdown of hours and tasks.
How do you start an Eagle Scout project?Start with the right perspective. ... Make the project personal. ... Go beyond the workbook. ... Meet with your coach often. ... Don't skip public fundraising, if needed. ... Share your project with the public.
How do you do an Eagle Scout project?Get the required 10 additional merit badges. ... Serve your troop for six months as a leader. ... Participate in a Scoutmaster conference. ... Think about your service project. ... Submit the proposal form for your project. ... Complete the service project. ... Participate in the Board of Review.
Is fundraising required for an Eagle Scout project?The Eagle Scout Service Project Fundraising Application, found in the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook, is used to obtain approval when required. ... They could also establish dollar thresholds; for example, \u201cAny effort expected to raise less than $500 does not require an application.\u201d
How do I download my Eagle Scout workbook?Open signNow Reader first, and then open the PDF from within signNow Reader. To download the PDF: Right click on the following link: Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook, No. 512-927. Once the dialog box appears, click on \u201cSave target [or link] as . . .