The Random Show, Episode 14/15 – Bourbon, Photography, iPhone Apps, and Start-ups


Random Episode 15 from Glenn McElhose on Vimeo.

In this long-overdue episode of Random, Kevin Rose and I discuss everything from start-ups and photography to naming products, iPhone apps, and survivalist training. Fueled by bourbon and pizza — cheat day, of course — we had a blast.

Hope you enjoy! The mentioned links, assorted goodies, and show notes are below.

Last but not least, The Random Show is now on iTunes! If you simply want audio-only, or if you’d like to watch the episodes on your iPhone or iPad, here you go:


Orbit Room Cafe

Milk, Inc.

Daniel Burka

Business Insider – 15 Greatest Tech Pivots

Bessemer’s “anti-portfolio” (mistakenly referred to as Accel’s anti-portfolio)

Control 4 Home Automation

Olympus E-PL2 digital camera

Panasonic LUMIX G 20mm f/1.7 Aspherical Pancake Lens

Christopher Michel – Photography

Matt Mullenweg

Power: Why Some People Have It And Others Don’t, by Jeffrey Pfeffer

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, by Walter Isaacson


Domain names – hash tag for kevin on Twitter: #krdomain

IPA (phonetic alphabet) flash cards


PDF pen – app

America: The Story Of US


All previous episodes of The Random Show can be found here.

Posted on: May 15, 2011.

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Comment Rules: Remember what Fonzie was like? Cool. That’s how we’re gonna be — cool. Critical is fine, but if you’re rude, we’ll delete your stuff. Please do not put your URL in the comment text and please use your PERSONAL name or initials and not your business name, as the latter comes off like spam. Have fun and thanks for adding to the conversation! (Thanks to Brian Oberkirch for the inspiration)

200 comments on “The Random Show, Episode 14/15 – Bourbon, Photography, iPhone Apps, and Start-ups

  1. Another great show guys!

    I would pay money to subscribe.
    Funds donated to one of your worthy causes?

    I also comment, so I can get email notification of the other
    commets – great ideas and suggestions in the comments.


  2. Help!!! I am currently working in Iraq and want to watch this but cannot download on iTunes. iTunes won’t allow me to do it because my ip address is coming up from out of the country. The internet here is not fast enough to stream it. Is there somewhere I can download it besides iTunes? This is the first episode to come out since I have been over here.

    Thank you in advance.


  3. Tim, Kevin and Glenn – Thanks for another great Random! :)

    SAS is an awesome book. Like girl scouts on crack.

    Exit Through the Gift Shop was a wild movie.

    If you are a big Rye fan Alberta Premium is great and highly rated. A very good whiskey, also from Canada, is Forty Creek. A couple of delicious bourbons are Knob Creek and Maker’s Mark. Happy drinking!

    Alles liebe.


  4. Hey Tim –

    Great resource if you’re interested in photography…

    This site not only has a collection of consistently beautiful photography on a wide variety of subject matter, but also lists the equipment, lenses, filters, exposure time, ISO setting, etc. that each photographer uses. It’s been hugely helpful for me and my photography as well.

    Good luck!


  5. Another great show thanks guys.

    I will make a recommendation on survival books. There is one I read over ten years ago: Survive! by Martin Forrester (I am 85% sure that is the name & author) Best survival book I have ever read.
    What I love is his humour throughout the book. It truly is the book you would want to have with you if you survived an aircrash on a deserted island… The humour is as important psychologically as the physical food water & shelter tips.


  6. Tim,

    Great choice on camera and lens! I personally use the Panasonic Lumix GF-1 kit with that 20mm/1.7 lens. It’s phenomenal. LIghtweight and small but nearly as powerful as a full on DSLR. Lightroom is truly an amazing piece of software also as they mentioned.

    When you are ready, look into upgrading your lens to a Voigtlander Nokton 50mm/1.1
    This lens is 1/10 the cost of the Leica Noctilux 50mm/0.95 ($1000 vs $10000). This is absolutely the ultimate low light lens. It will increase the artistic look and sharpness of your shots. is a great comparison of the two lenses and shows a bit of what kind of look they are capable of.



  7. For Kevin: First, that is one good looking bike!! Second, Control 4 sounds like all of my nerdiest home gadgetry dreams come true. The lighting features that you described could be super beneficial to your health by aligning your body’s natural circadian rhythm to the rise and fall of the sun. It would be AWESOME if you could have the color temp of your AM lights be a crisp white with a hint of blue for a refreshing morning light similar to the suns natural color in the morning hours. Then even more awesome, particularly if you have trouble sleeping, would be to have the lighting slowly dim as you get ready for bed – preferably with warm, red tones of light in contrast to the the dynamic white/blueish light of the morning sun. One of my favorite evidence based interior designers posted this article on the subject if you’re interested:

    For Tim: You discuss a blue light in your latest book that aids in better sleep for the sleep deprived and helps to prevent fatigue throughout the day – do you study any type of Epigenetic science related to the color of light or was this just a random discovery made in attempt to get yourself some well deserved sleep?! I’m also pretty excited to hear about your adventures in photography.. I’m a newby to the world of photography as well. :)


  8. Tim,

    If you’re getting into photography you may find this helpful: . It’s a fantastic WordPress plugin that creates slideshows for your blog. I’m not sure if you plan on posting your images on your blog but thought I would tell you about it in case you do.

    I would like to disclose that I am a developer for the company but I fully believe in our products. If you’re interested in trying it out or any of our other photography products I would be more than happy to give it to you for free.



  9. [Moderated: Removed links]

    Hey Tim it’s Mark, the guy who sent you that photo of the Matterhorn a while ago, who was mentioned in your extended version, who you tweeted about last weekend with the body transformation photos…….

    Hey, I have started a new company called Chimpsy. We are moving into San Francisco with a Groupon feature on June 6. We have little “photo fieldtrips” that we offer to students. They are fun little 2 hour crash courses in photography. I’ll give you a free pass. In fact, if you want to come, I’ll actually fly out and teach yours personally. You and all your friends. Let me know if you want to take me up on that.



  10. Tim,
    The book titled “Understanding Exposure” is an excellent book. This book was recommended to me when I first picked up a camera, 5 years ago. He has another book along the same simple, yet extensive information titled “Understanding Shutter Speed.” Even the basic point and shoot that majority of population use has the settings to allow for some manipulation of these speeds, which can create a whole new world into artistic/creative photography.


  11. Hi Tim & Kevin,

    Thankyou so much for the tip of viewing “Exit through the Gift Shop”. Wow! This blew my mind. I found this so intiguing. I’ve begun to research the question “is ETTGS a hoax? And if so, what is true? What is not…?

    I’m interested, what r peoples thoughts on this film and its legitimacy?



  12. Tim, you look a lot more laid back and happy, I remember you coming across as more serious and slightly uptight in the past. Is there a reason for it?


      • NCA,

        The income actually has nothing to do with it. I still drive the same VW Golf I bought used in 2004, and my lifestyle “burn” is minimal. An additional $2-10MM has no material impact on my day-to-day life.

        The difference is being more comfortable in my own skin. That’s it. Perhaps from having a second bestseller (Fulfilling “once you’re lucky, twice you’re good” and feeling able to relax, perhaps?), or perhaps from valuing relationships more over time.




      • I didn’t mean it to sound like an attack on Tim or anything, he just seems so laid back and happy, and it seems pretty authentic. I want some of that :D


      • Income has nothing to do with it Huh? Alright then how about you donate every cent you made off your last book (and will continue to make) to the Wounded Warrior Project, sell your home and donate that money as well, oh and as far as personal appearances you can donate all that money too. When it is all said and done, money has everything to do with it, don’t get me wrong Tim, your first book changed my life and you have done alot of good and put in the hard work and you deserve to reap the rewards, but let’s be real about it, and to say that money has nothing to do with it…well, that’s just a cop out and you know it.

        Let’s see how many of your valued relationships would value you if you were broke, I think we know the real answer to that. Money does buy happiness, it also buys pain, false friends, but it also provides a sense of well being, happiness, and security.

        I would have respected your answer more had it been truthful and real world. So like I said, donate all that “additional $2-10MM” you speak of and I really believe you will be singing a different tune.




      • Hi NCA,

        Money does buy “happiness” (self-reported well-being) up to about $100,000 in annual income. Based on all available research, it has diminishing returns past that. My point was that any difference in my demeanor in the last few Random shows vs. earlier episodes wouldn’t be — based on that research — attributable to income from the last book. I was already past the $100,000 point.

        It saddens me that your comment is so accusatory, without asking for clarification. How many of my valued relationships would value me if I lost all my money? Almost all of them, as that’s how I pick them. It’s a reason most of my close friends I’ve known since high school, and also why I live in SF vs. NYC or other more externally-focused locales.

        In any case, you’re certainly entitled to your feelings and opinions about this, but I don’t think your accusation is fair. I donate at least 10% of my pre-tax income to non-profits and causes per year (probably closer to 20%), and you’ll be hard pressed to find many people how do that, even among those who make $100M/year.

        That’s all I can offer. Hope it helps somehow.

        All the best,



      • I don’t know what your deal is NCA or where your angry comments come from. Clearly I don’t need to stand up for anyone here nor do I want to engage in a negative conversation but I can’t bite my tongue after reading a couple of your comments. It seems that everyone is supportive and encouraging on here and then there is you. You’re the reason I rarely read comments or post any myself. We have someone inspirational and innovative and you find any minute point to direct this clear anger for whatever reason. There are plenty of other people you could attack that don’t post blogs about donating to disasters (see Japan/music blog) or people with money that don’t care about how we treat animals (see shark fin blog) and you pick Tim. You said his book changed your life but you are quick to accuse false accusation or believe an answer is a straight up lie. It seems like money is the reason you got excited. Don’t you think people that change lives deserve to be paid for what they do? Could YOU put a price on it? If your life was changed by a book how many others have been affected? As stated earlier I won’t be engaging in any debate with you, that isn’t my goal. I figured I write what I’m certain others are thinking. Honestly I wish people like you would direct their negative, angry energy somewhere else.


  13. You guys are great, thanks so much for making this show along with it being so easily accessible. I try to surround myself with influential, inspirational people and I couldn’t be happier to get a little insight of how you guys do what you do.
    I know you get a lot of questions so I’ll be brief. I have the opportunity to get a little, tiny piece of air time on the radio in which it will be possible to ‘sell’ or maybe ‘advertise’ for companies in the same field (apologies, don’t know the proper terminology). I was wondering if that ‘s what you guys do when you introduce a product or website on the show?
    Being who you are I’d imagine company’s come to you, I was wondering if you have any short suggestions on how I would approach company’s to do the same.
    Thanks again for the show, I really enjoyed it!


  14. Hi Tim,

    Just finished the 4 Hour Body book! Outstanding book! Right up my street.

    Just watched this Random episode and now subscribed to the Podcasts. Looking forward to the next one mate


  15. I really wish Random was a weekly show. I get so excited when I see a new episode posted because it gets me on to all kinds of things I didn’t even know existed before. Keep the shows coming, they kill it.


  16. Hi Tim, Kevin, love the show, and just realized you can subscribe to it in iTunes, only problem is — I have a Windows Phone… any chance you guys could add the podcast to the Zune Marketplace as well? That’d be awesome!
    Thaaaaaaaaaanks! Union


  17. Great show! Took plenty of notes and downloaded apps as I was listening. This is some of the best stuff on the web, the way you meander through one interesting topic after another, and the tone is always upbeat and cool. Thank you! Keep it up!


  18. Hey Tim,

    It’s awesome that you want to get more into photography. I started a photoblog in 2005 (check link) and posted one photo each day. It keeps you motivated to always be shooting and to have an open eye about the world. Every considered doing that yourself? You can Tumblr and Cargo Collective are two of my favourite choices for photo blogging platforms.

    Also, I recently found this video which I find very inspiring:


  19. Hey Tim,

    It’s awesome that you want to get more into photography. I started a photo blog in 2005 (check link) and posted one photo each day. It keeps you motivated to always be shooting and to have an open eye about the world. Ever considered doing that yourself? Tumblr and Cargo Collective are two of my favourite choices for photo blogging platforms.

    Also, I recently found this video which I find very inspiring:


  20. Oh, and if you’re using a Mac, I would choosing Apple Aperture over Adobe Lightroom. It’s a lot more intuitive and easy to use, while giving you all the same great tools.


  21. Purchased the ipa flashcards, not really a fan. I was a linguistics major looking for an easy way to refresh my ipa skills. Only 50 out of the 300 cards have word examples that let you actually learn the Ipa sounds. It also appears the creator doesn’t know what a diphthong is, many of the vowels are incorrectly labeled. Be careful if you have an accent because you will associate the wrong sound with the ipa symbol by just reading the examples aloud. Good idea, poor execution. Not worth 50 bucks!


  22. @Qishisanye
    For starters, I’m sorry you weren’t pleased with the cards. Please don’t hesitate to return them. We offer a 30-day money back guarantee via amazon. If you’re beyond the 30 days and are that disappointed, I’ll gladly make arrangements for you.
    To clarify, the website is transparent regarding how many example cards are in the deck, and on how the remaining cards are broken down. I’m guessing you may have seen the show and ordered the cards thinking they were all the same format. We are well aware of diphthongs; the cards were edited by a linguistics professor. If you have specific examples of cards you feel are incorrect, we would welcome the advice at or take the survey on our website. We’re always interested in ways to make improvements for the future.
    Again, I’m sorry you weren’t impressed with the cards. We worked hard on the content, print quality and presentation.
    -Kellie Kalish
    President of Minokidowinan Language Resources


  23. Great episode, thanks guys. LOVE the knives, Tim.

    One ‘thing':

    Kevin… Let’s be honest, buddy. You can’t pull off a motorcycle.

    Stop while you’re ahead, and stick with the Vespa.




  24. Tim ??.
    Thanks to you and Kevin for another interesting and inspiring random episode. It’s especially great to see you talk about languages again.

    Being a big fan of your methods and a believer in your ideas, I was wondering if maybe you could give us a timeline and an overview of how you approach a completely new language like you did in your “How to Resurrect Your High School Spanish… or Any Language” post for reactivating languages in one of the next episodes.

    All the best,


  25. Hey Man, just wanted to share that I just bought the latest version of the kindle version of 4HWW (I had the previous one) and I have been reading it using my laptop (dont have a kindle yet). It is pretty amazing, the book has helped me tremendously, I particularly like the microtesting tips and all the tricks related to negotiating and getting things done. I read Koch´s 80/20 Book before yours, and it is the perfect follow up; your talks about applying 80-20 to businenesses and personal life with a hands on approach.

    Just wanted to share and say thanks.


  26. Hi everybody!

    I got this morning PAGG and want to start taking them tomorrow but i don’y know if i should wait till after my cheat day? Cause what directions said not to take them on carb day?

    Please let me know.


  27. Could I have a protein shake of Metagenics Chocolate Whey(15 grams protein) plus 2 eggs scramble (1 yolk) for breakfast? Or an Orgain Protein drink in chocolate or vanilla (15gprotein) and 2 eggs scrambled (1 yolk)? I cannot get down plain whey protein with vegetables in it as an option. It makes me sick to my stomach. I also don’t have a ton of time in the morning to prepare vegetables and beans so a protein shake is easiest.


  28. Hey Tim,

    I didn’t realize you were a bourbon fan? I thought only red wine. What’s your favorite bourbon?

    Also, just wanted to let you know I lost 8.5 lbs in 3 weeks on the 4HB diet and had crazy amounts of energy. I’ve switched over to the primal diet now more for maintenance purposes. Anyway, if you’re ever in Idaho, I’ll buy you a drink, on cheat day of course. ;)


  29. Hey Mr. Ferriss:

    First of all I would like to say that I have read your book, The 4 Hour Work Week, 3 times and it is simply incredible. I can’t seem to put it down and get inspired every time I read it. Also I am very familiar with your blog and absolutely love it!!! The random shows are my personal favorites. I’m 22 and taking time off from school in Toronto, its been over a year now. I feel like I’m still in the same position and nothing has changed since last year. I want to start my own business but just can’t seem to find that last bit to get me started. All my life I’ve been dreaming up clever ideas to start, so at least that department of my factory is still active.

    Mr. Ferriss from all your adventures through life, what excites you to pursue more?


  30. Hi Mr. Ferris.

    I was given your name today by someone who thought you might be interested to know of what is happening with the CVAC System following the article in the Wall Street Journal about it’s use by Novak Djokovics.

    If so, I’d love to hear from you.


    Roger Gunn


  31. I am getting a lot of value out of the 4-Hour Body as a triathlete and I’m onto the 4 hour work-week to help with time-management as a solo-practitioner/teacher. At the moment I am looking for some information, similar to what you did with running for cyclists. Also, I really enjoy long rides on the week-end. I was thinking of doing the bing day on the day I cycle to ensure I have enough calories on the bike. Any thoughts or recommendations in this area?


  32. Tim,

    I’m impressed at your ability to be on top, ahead of the curb but honestly your self-improvement advise is not designed for people who have super successful careers and have a personal life. Also, I’m assuming you have are not married or have kids so do you “really” know what you’re talking about?

    Anonymously interested to believe the self-help guru, but believe he’s an exceptional out-of-the-box self-promoter.


  33. Tim,

    Great book recommendation! I picked it up right after and found it very interesting and useful. A section that hit me on the head was the price Power people pay, i.e. autonomy (e.g. time, relationships, hobbies, pleasure, etc.)

    One of the main points I enjoyed and appreciated from the 4HWW is time and mobility. In effort to gain more Power I don’t think I’m willing to the pay the price of losing autonomy, one of my most valued goals in life.




  34. That is some alarming and advantageous advice appropriate there. I cannot delay until the little humans go to beddy-bye so that I can apply and plan some of this being out.Thanks!


  35. Great show. Some great new apps I will use. Picked up a Nikon 3100 Xmas 2010 great camera. I will check out the exposure book and put it to some use. Living in the DC area there are some great shots you can get if you use the right lighting. Sunset shots of the Potomac and the sights are amazing. I will have to try and make a few of those drinks. I saw the Bulleit Bourbon I received it as a Birthday gift in December. I’m more a Scotch than a Bourbon guy but I must say this stuff is awesome. Like the venue of the show keep mixing it up.