github HQ picture

I listen to a variety of podcasts and currently I’m on a start up kick.  Andrew Warner produces a constant stream of interesting interviews at

One such interview was with Tom Preston-Werner, one of the founders of GitHub.  The interview is almost a year old so you have to be a member to watch or listen, however a full transcript of the interview is still available.

Preston-Werner also appears to be responsible for inspiring Daniel Bachhuber’s recent post on open sourcing everything in a post titled Open Sourcing (Almost) Everything.

Here’s what struck me:

  • User experience decisions about how GitHub looks and functions–projects are organized by user (people), not be project name
  • Approach to their revenue model using open source software
  • Preston-Werner founded Gravatar and sold it to WordPress
  • If you’re looking to start a successful project, focus on solving a problem that frustrates you– that is a really great question to ponder.
  • To keep a project interesting and fun, start thinking early on what your revenue model will be–not so you can become a billionaire or immediately charge people, but so that the cost or success of continuing the project doesn’t put you in debt or become a financial or emotional burden.
  • Good passionate and constructive discussion is more valuable than voting to make a decision
  • The people that don’t like something are usually more vocal than the people who do.  You can’t automatically consider them the loudest people to be right or the majority.
  • GitHub has native a native Mac client that sounds like it does lots of cool things
  • GitHub can version images and show diffs between versioned images
  • GitHub has a whole vision for making versioning available to people that don’t understand versioning and its value to businesses, etc.

 Photo credit apas