Words of Wisdom

Moot Talks to HackNY About The Importance of Being Imperfect

moot2 Moot Talks to HackNY About The Importance of Being Imperfect

What they hackNY fellows were picturing.

Moot (né Christopher Poole) was the latest tech luminary to impart his wisdom and experience, accumulated over the past 20-something years, to hackNY’s 2011 class.

Akarshan Kumar, one of hackNY’s new fellows, chronicled the experience on his blog New York Summer. In the two-hour talk Mr. Poole covered everything from his personal temperament (“I’m not easily offended. I run 4chan”) to not being friends with your board members.

But Mr. Poole’s most trenchant advice seemed to be about picking the right co-founder and the benefits of imperfection. When picking a partner to run your start-up, over-eagerness should be a turn-off. Instead, he told them, go for a hard-to-get founder you’re going to have to fight to work with. Mr. Kumar’s take away? “If your prospective co-founder wants to sleep with you, don’t sleep with him.”

As for imperfection, Mr. Poole said that’s something he intentionally aimed for with his latest start-up, Canvas, an image sharing and tweaking website. By building Canvas to function like “something between Paint and Photoshop,” it makes users more comfortable creating images on the site. Embracing a lack of optimization is an interesting approach to user experience, but one that certainly seems to have worked for 4chan. Think of it as familiarity breeds content.

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