Conversation with Pete Cashmore of


I had a fun conversation with the smart and well-dressed Pete Cashmore of Mashable after speaking at the SF MusicTech Summit, where I was interviewed by Derek Sivers of CDBaby fame.

Pete and I discussed/answered:

1. What is the single most important thing that CEOs can do to conquer information overload?
2. The value of heirarchical thinking as a CEO or manager
3. Next plans for Tim Ferriss? (Forewarning: I’m evasive)

Have a great weekend!

Attention Aussies: I’m off to Sydney for about 10 days, so let me know if you’d be interested in doing a meet up with readers and having a few pints ;)

Bonus video for those left out of my tweets this evening.

Posted on: May 9, 2008.

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96 comments on “Conversation with Pete Cashmore of

  1. Hey there Tim,
    I just wanted to leave you a quick note to say that I’m really pleased to see that you were audible in your interview with Pete at the summit last Thursday. (I had asked the ‘background chatters’ to quiet down a little, but to no avail… surprised? no.) Regardless, I thoroughly enjoyed your talk with Derek and I look forward to reading your book as you explore Australia. Just one word of caution: if you’re surfing, watch out for the man-of-wars, or as they call them there, bluebottles. They’re no fun.
    Take good care.
    Until next time…


  2. Tim if you are in Sydney and would like to indulge your interest in the combat side of life than I can introduce you to “The Shredder” from Richard Dimitri’s Reality Based Self Defence, Senshido. Or we can just have a roll.
    I’m flying back from New York after photographing UFC ex champ Matt Serra on Monday


  3. Dear Tim,
    I was strolling through the local library today when I came across your book. Later on this evening I read 103 pages of it. After reading those pages the thought occured to me that this books appears to be beneficial for the office worker. I am a full time college student, a single mother, and I work as a part time tutor, robbing peter to pay paul. I undersand that I have not read the entire book, but couldn’t help wondering if your book will really help someone like me. I have never run a business nor do I have the credit or resources to do so. A lot of the tehniques described in your book I aready do. For example I cut out the media in my life a long time ago and I typically delete most of my emails before they are even opened. Time management is not actually my issue…its more about obtaining the resources to actually live without financial worry in order to better focus on what is most important in my life. I hope to hear from you soon.



    Hi Susette,

    Thank you for the comment. I know I’m biased, but I do think this book will help. I don’t often state this explicitly, but the principles are flexible and mostly based on both obtaining or creating needed resources.

    Best of luck,



  4. Hi Tim I’m a big fan of yours. Would Love to catch up when you’re here. There’s a great milonga on Sundays.



  5. Hi Tim,
    Can you please let us know your dates for aussie trip early so people who can arrange to go to Sydney or Melb, I’m from Brisbane and if you want to relax out for a couple days you should go to Gold Coast! Well be great to discuss some things with you and get my booked signed! haha




  6. Interesting advice about using an email autoresponder for personal or business email. I have always thought of email autoresponders primarily as a website marketing tool not necessarily as a productivity tool.


  7. Hi Tim
    I am a sales coach for PLAN Australia, one of the largest aggregators in Australia. A high percentage of the attendees at the conference you are speaking at will be mortgage brokers from our organisation. Would we be able to catch up before or after your presentation? I have been promoting your book at all my workshops and would like to meet you in person. I remember your exercise for the entrepreuneurs in your Princeton course to contact a famous business person. I would like to pass this test! Kind regards, Gail


  8. Hi Gang, one more for the festivities in Sydney! Given the quality of responses on the blog in general, it’s sure to be one interesting meetup. Cheers, Jason.


  9. Keen as mustard for a Sydney meet up too!

    I read your book around this time last year, right after I graduated Uni, and it really changed the direction of my future. I was being clawed into corporate suit life (which after spending the year traveling, and at heart being a writer, seemed unrealistic and mentally impossible), reading 4hww opened my eyes and helped me disregard all the people saying “back to reality…time to work your way up the corporate ladder”, and instead get to where I want to be.

    Thanks : )


  10. Tim,
    I am so exhilarated by you. I just finished your book and am now going through it the second time, starting to implement things. Its just so much amazing information to absorb. I would make EVERY effort to meet you down in Melbourne if you were so inclined to head down there. I had a couple questions to ask you as well.
    Do you believe that there is an amount of time you should be employed before approaching your boss with the idea of a remote work agreement?

    And do all your suggestions and ideas work internationally, or are they just US based? IE: Magazines, dropshipping…

    I would love to ask these in person in Melbourne.
    Love your work, Tim!



  11. hey Tim, really keen to hang out.

    here’s a few convenient places that will hold 100+ on a busy night in Sydney

    – opera bar
    – ryan’s bar
    – the ivy (my tip)

    give me a shout if you need things organised.


    – A


  12. Hi Tim,

    Count me in for a Sydney drink or two. I was another of those who bought the book pre-order. Life-changing.

    Looking forward to meeting you and everyone else you’ve inspired – keen to swap some stories.

    See you soon,


  13. Hey Tim,

    very keen to meet up with you in Melbourne. I’m 22, stumbled across your book. AMAZING STUFF, already recommended it to friends, find it very unique compare to other books. applied speed reading straight away and GOLLY, finished the book less than 3 hours. so many tools and ideas in there, just don’t know where to start. working full time, started a business. excuses creeps in from time to time…like Susette, i want to be wealthy with no finiacial limitation, for me to pursue my dreams in the performing arts industry. With the business i have, biggest issue is marketing it. now that there’re so many internet software that ‘promised’ high traffic..etc..etc..what’s your view on that? how do you market in this internet thriving days when my internet knowledge is relatively ok? any recommendation? before i forget, let me know when and where is the meet up place in melbourne.


  14. Tim > I will be there for the Sydney get together.

    Let me know what you need on ground > when you are here
    or before hand.

    Let me arrange a luxury car to pick you up on your arrival and
    get you to where you need to go.


  15. Tim,
    Loved the book. Am on my second read now since I know I missed a bunch the first go around. I see you are up in the Vancouver area. You available to meet up? I am not too far away.


  16. Tim – Just saw your tweets about Media Temple support. They tried to convince me I was the only site having problemsbut I’m glad to know I wasn’t the only one they tried to convince that noting was going wrong. They used to be stellar, especially for support, but I’ve been really disappointed with them lately.



  17. @ Andrew
    Agree – Ivy mid week would be a pretty sweet spot. If you need back up on making calls through to the Merrivale crew let me know and I can back your calls up.

    How do people feel about Ivy?


  18. Heya Tim,

    Hook us up for Melbourne!!

    Transport seems like a good idea, it’s nice and big in a good location, and has the the biggest range of beers in Aust or something. There are plenty of places nearby we can move onto later on if you’re up for a big one ;)

    If you’re looking for flights, check out this site:

    It’s an attempt to match/better the likes of Orbitz & Kayak, but with more of a 4HWW approach… it allows non-specific, “fuzzy” searches so you can take a trip wherever/whenever the flights are cheapest.

    Hope to catch up down here in Melbs!!


  19. I loved the experiments with the dry ice :-) Apparently dry ice can also be used to make a dry ice bomb, by sealing the dry ice in a bottle of some sort, but it’s very dangerous and even illegal in some parts of the world, so I wouldn’t recommend you try it :-)


  20. Great advice on your video interview, you’re absolutely right about the fact that we simply can’t please everybody when we’re in the CEO position. Started implementing your batch emailing process actually and it worked like a charm! Would love to check out your next project about video media. Hope you have an awesome time in Oz ;)


  21. Ok, I’m not from Sydney nor will be there to meet or have some pints, but… do you have any plans to come to Mexico any time soon? More specifically, I live in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.

    I’m really enjoying your book and blog and I would really like to meet you.

    Keep me posted!



  22. Hi Tim,

    I just spoke with my friend in Sydney Kate Bezar: the Dreamer, Founder and Editor of the “mook” (cross between a magazine and a book) “Dumbo Feather, Pass it On” Check it out here: Kate interviewed me for issue 14 and I mentioned that you would be in town for a few days. She’d love to interview you for her next issue! Here is a little blurb about this awesome publication:

    “In each issue of Dumbo Feather, 5 remarkable individuals tell their stories. Their backgrounds and dreams are as unique as they are, but what unites them is their creativity, passion and integrity, and somewhere they found the courage to fly. In their own words they tell you how they discovered their passion, what inspires them, the lows as well as the highs on the journey and ultimately why they do what they do.”

    So let me know if you are interested in doing an interview and I’ll connect you both.

    Love to catch up while you are in Melbourne and thanks so much for the inspiring book.



  23. Hi Tim,

    Another fan, another Sydney guy keen to meet up.

    Happy to help arrange on-the-ground, if required.

    My suggestion is a private room somewhere where we can get drinks and a feed. This should allow an exciting ‘like minded’ exchange with all, perhaps even a presentation or something could happen if it’s “our room” for the night…

    Bar Cleveland springs to mind.




  24. @ Kai

    as much as i’d love to make a decision on the Ivy – this one’s not my call.

    and hence …

    @ Tim

    will wait for the go-ahead first.


  25. Hey,

    Great to see you down under Tim. I unfortunately am living over in Auckland so will miss the meetups. Let me know if you are ever in NZ again and I would love to meet you and show you around.

    As for Sydney, make sure to try James Squire Amber or Golden Ales. Best beers in Australia (although I am sure some will disagree).

    Cheers mate,



  26. Hi Tim

    Am about halfway through 4HWW and love it!

    Wondering whether you’ve decided if you’re coming to Melbourne. If so, love to join the festivities!



  27. Hey Tim,

    When are you coming to India!

    You will be amazed at some of the time saving techniques used here ,like working wives in mumbai buying and cutting vegetables in the train on thier evening commmute back home, so they can start cooking immediately when they reach!




  28. Hey mate, just wanted to thank you for the support your book gave in changing my lifestyle. Here’s what I have managed to do in 8 months.

    Since reading your book I gave my IT career (which I hated) the flick, and have worked entirely from home. It’s allowed me to focus on building my online art print business.

    Paying the bills in the meantime with some rather shitty work (telephone fundraising etc). But sure enough, I am about to clinch a couple of national distribution deals with my business. Very pleased about that.

    Once this happens I will employ someone to fill the orders, trade futures full time… and be 100% mobile.

    A couple of things that nag me though.. the idea of outsourcing everything overseas, is unworkable on a larger scale. I believe we should try and keep it local.. it is kinda imperialistic to go around being a bigshot while Your Man in India does your hard work.

    Also the bit in the book where cheated your way into 1st place in the kickboxing — man, that was not a cool move. You lost a lot of readers by admitting that.

    Just had to balance praise with criticism dude! But I like what you’re doing.



    Hi Darren,

    Congrats on all! For the kickboxing, I know a lot of people have taken this as I did not mean to write it. I didn’t break a single rule, rather I learned how to magnify my strengths within the rules, so I don’t view this as cheating. The high jump as you see it now was once “cheating” — i.e., the man who did the first back arch vs. hurdle-like form was labeled a cheater and now it’s the norm. I think that optimizing your performance within rules is the key to better competing, but I understand that not everyone reads my story that way.

    Pura vida and good luck :)



  29. The atrium! Brilliant! I’m an indoor plant nut too. I gotta get me one of those happening in the office.

    I’m sorry I missed your trip to Sydney all those months ago.


  30. Hi Tim,

    In regards to your dry ice video, this appears to be some form of the leidenfrost effect hXXp:// –

    In short, it’s similar to the way water beads up on a hot skillet by floating on vapors.

    In this case, the vibration seems to be occuring because of gas escaping by way of temperature exchange. The coin heats up the dry ice creating CO2 (gas). The gas expands and escapes from behind the coin pushing the opposite side of the coin against the other wall of the CO2(solid). Rinse and repeat until the coin has cooled.

    The leidenfrost effect has also been suggested as the way firewalkers walk on hot coals.

    I’m not a physicist, but my science teacher showed us a video in 8th grade illustrating this concept. Hope this lends a little clarity to the vibrating coin puzzle.

    Best Regards!


  31. @JasonDavies

    Yes I was going to comment on the dry ice bomb, but wanted to make sure no one wrote about it yet. You referenced it, but I wanted to explain it in detail in the hopes that, since people are going to try it regardless of if they know how, at least they will know what’s going to happen, haha.

    NOTE TO TIM: If you think this is stupid, I’m fine with you vetoing this comment, but I figured an educated person trying this was better than an uneducated one.

    Like Jason said, it can be dangerous!! So, if you just can’t get over the urge to see it in person and try one, first make sure you are OUTSIDE, and in a very open area with no other people, animals, or anything else of value nearby.

    Chop up some dry ice so that it is in small enough pieces to fit through the opening of a 2 liter bottle. Take the 2 liter bottle, and fill it a little over half, to 2/3 full of warm water. Do not use hot water, since that will make it pressurize too fast! You’ll get the same affect with warm water anyway. You take the funnel and place it in the bottle. Pour only about 1/4 cup dry ice in the funnel, and as soon as it is all in the bottle, seal it with the cap as fast as you can, and throw it as far away from you as you can, without throwing it high in the air, so it doesn’t hit the ground hard.

    Wait 10 seconds or less, and it will build up enough pressure to blow the bottle open :)

    Oh, and if this is illegal in North Dakota, then no I have never tried this :D