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The Unbelievable Future of Habit-Forming Technology

The Unbelievable Future of Habit-Forming Technology

Nir’s Note: Jane McGonigal is a game designer at The Institute for the Future and bestselling author of Reality is Broken and SuperBetter. She’ll be speaking at the upcoming Habit Summit in April. (You can register here!) In this interview with Max Ogles, McGonigal discusses impact of future technologies on behavior, habits, and the way we design products.

Q: You recently worked on a project designed to visualize the future of technology. The idea was that using some future, not-yet-existent product, nicknamed FeelThat, people could actually share emotions with each other. (Here’s a link to the video.) What was the thinking behind it?

Why Our Tech Obsession Might Be a Work Obsession

Why Our Tech Obsession Might Be a Work Obsession

Nir’s Note: Below is the transcript of an interview I did with David Burkus, an award-winning podcaster and author of Under New Management: The Unexpected Truths about Leading Great Organizations. This interview was part of a Heleo Conversation on the topic of technology obsession, work-life balance, and challenging assumptions in order to change behavior. I hope you enjoy it.

Nir: When companies call me and say, “We want to make our product habit-forming,” about half the time I say, “Sorry, you don’t meet the test. Your product will never become a habit.” There is a list of criteria around what even has potential to become a habit-forming product. That doesn’t mean that they need to go out of business; there’s lot of businesses that are very successful without forming a habit.

Your Ability to Focus Has Probably Peaked: Here’s How to Stay Sharp

Your Ability to Focus Has Probably Peaked: Here’s How to Stay Sharp

Having a hard time focusing lately? You’re not alone. Research shows interruptions occur about every twelve minutes in the workplace, and every three minutes in university settings. In an age of constant digital interruptions, it is no wonder you’re having trouble ignoring distractions.

In their new book, The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World, Dr. Adam Gazzaley, a neuroscientist, and Dr. Larry Rosen, a psychologist, explain how our ability to pay attention works and what we can do to stay focused.

Don’t Ask People What They Want, Watch What They Do

Don’t Ask People What They Want, Watch What They Do

Nir’s Note: Irene Au is a design partner at Khosla Ventures and former Head of Design at Google, Yahoo, and Udacity. She’ll be speaking at the upcoming Habit Summit in April. (You can register here!) In this interview, she chats with Max Ogles about design strategy for startups.

Q: You have an impressive background as a designer at Google, Yahoo, and now at Khosla Ventures. Could you describe how your design role translates in venture capital?

How to Achieve Your Goals By Creating an Enemy

How to Achieve Your Goals By Creating an Enemy

DJ Khaled, the one-man internet meme, is known for warning his tens of millions of social media followers about a group of villains he calls “they.”

They don’t want you motivated. They don’t want you inspired,” he blares on camera. “They don’t want you to win,” he warns. On Ellen DeGeneres’s talk show, Khaled urged the host, “Please, Ellen, stay away from them!”

The “they” Khaled invokes are clearly a sinister force. But who are they? Khaled offered clues when he told DeGeneres, “They are the people who don’t believe in you.…They is the person that told you you would never have an Ellen show.”

Business, Behavior, & the Brain
Hi, I'm Nir. I build, study, and write about products and ideas that move people. More about me here.

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