The Podcast

The Podcast
Conversations on technology, productivity, business and more.
145: Don’t say that
May 22 • 64 min
A real snapshot of how we work together. Michael is working on a presentation about remote work for infoShare, and we iterate on the draft, together, live.
144: Staring at a blank canvas
May 15 • 38 min
A strategy for dealing with the hardest kind of tasks. Hint: it’s not by trying to make it 100% right in one go.
143: How to spend money
May 9 • 53 min
Exploring the domain of personal finance: analyzing your spending, how to save money efficiently, why (saving on things you don’t care about so you can spend on things you do), and Michael’s rant on young people.
142: Aliens among us
May 2 • 52 min
Questioning the format, purpose, length, and need for the semi-annual Nozbe Reunion — the only time when our remote company is in one physical location. More learning from our mistakes, old and new. And how to let go.
141: Nozbe at Nozbe
Apr 24 • 50 min
This week, we explain, in detail, do we use Nozbe (the app) at Nozbe (the company). Why not all projects have a specific goal and end, a company message board, how to organize work and communication in a software development team, and how to semi-automate…
140: Raising the bar
Apr 18 • 55 min
Our hopes and wishes for Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference next month. Discussing bezel-less iPads, a convergence of iOS and macOS, and products Apple should not be selling anymore.
139: First tasks first
Apr 10 • 49 min
Radek explains his best system yet for planning the day and week to squeeze as much deep work as possible. First tasks first, then the frog, radio silence until 10am, plan the next day early, manage energy levels, and keep a stash of backup tasks. Easy!
138: Leap of faith
Apr 3 • 54 min
A meandering discussion on advantages of semi-nomadic lifestyle, the brokenness of companies, changing paradigms, always taking the blame, and being immunized by experience.
137: Nomadic lifestyle
Mar 27 • 57 min
Radek explains what it takes to be a digital nomad — how to travel often, with little preparation, overhead, or stress, all while still doing your job. We discuss: how to pack for a week in a backpack, how to pack extremely fast, how to keep your good…
136: Traveling with apps
Mar 21 • 50 min
Using technology to make traveling easier. How to keep track of who owes whom how much, saving money on currency exchanges, running through the airport more quickly, keeping track of expenses, managing preparation for a trip, and sharing all the files,…
135: Swiss army apps
Mar 13 • 52 min
Discussing iOS apps, and how to use them powerfully. A follow-up on note-taking, document scanning, and maintaining a Magic Spreadhseet on iPhone and iPad. Also, why it’s totally normal, even for a minimalist, to have multiple note-taking apps (or to-do…
134: Nozbe for you
Mar 6 • 48 min
How Michael and Radek organize their lives (side projects, hobbies, chores, errands) outside of work using Nozbe.
133: Better Than Before
Mar 1 • 42 min
Cultivating good habits and overcoming bad ones — discussing the most interesting strategies and brain hacks from Better than Before by Gretchen Rubin.
132: Reusable Rocketry
Feb 13 • 47 min
On the day of Falcon Heavy’s maiden launch (currently the most powerful rocket in the world), we discuss what makes SpaceX great. SpaceX makes the cheapest and most powerful rockets in the world, and they’re reusable. How come they succeeded, and NASA’s…
131: Singular Focus of 2018
Feb 6 • 50 min
Annual Review series, part 5 (and last!). Learning from previous years and quarterly reviews, and applying lessons of Burst Projects, Values, and Letting go to design the best year ever. Making fewer goals, and putting them sequentially, not in parallel,…
130: 2017 Highlights
Jan 30 • 47 min
Annual Review series, part 4. We’re taking a look back at last year, to consider all that was good, bad, ugly, or just unexpected, and learn from it.
129: Letting go
Jan 23 • 44 min
Annual Review series, part 3. Each year, start anew. Your past projects, goals, habits don’t matter… unless you decide that they really do. Don’t automatically move last year’s failed goals to this year. And don’t hold yourself to the highest standard…
128: Values
Jan 16 • 49 min
Annual Review series, part 2. Last week we discussed how to structure goals. Today, we discuss how to select your goals in the first place. It starts with deep self-knowledge. Truly understanding the things about you, what motivates you, what excites you,…
127: Burst Projects vs Keystone Habits
Jan 11 • 46 min
Annual Review series, part 1. Sometimes you stumble upon a project that excites and engages you so much, it gives you what feels like superhuman power. We discuss how to foster the right environment for such projects to appear in your life. We also…
126: Inbox Non-Zero
Jan 4 • 41 min
How to become less addicted to notifications and badges. The thing is: they’re designed to make us react. Every time we see there’s a new message, we check it out. And thus it becomes a compulsive behavior we cannot stop (we’re just humans after all). We…
125: No speed limit
Dec 19, 2017 • 49 min
Learn a new language in the New Year! Following up on the previous two episodes on learning languages, we share more tips on how to learn efficiently, as well as our own progress (Radek learning Spanish, and Michael learning French)
124: Making geeks smile
Dec 12, 2017 • 40 min
Cool gadgets you can get for Christmas. Also: Review of 2017 in hardware, and why Radek doesn’t wear an Apple Watch anymore.
123: So Good They Can’t Ignore You
Dec 5, 2017 • 41 min
Just follow your passion, right? … No. Unless you’re already highly skilled at something you’re passionate about, following your passion will only drive you to be miserable. To get a great job you can feel passionate about, you must first have something…
122: Deep Pre-Decision
Nov 29, 2017 • 39 min
Optimizing your day for Deep Work. Or, what to do to make highly productive, deeply focused work possible (and likely).
121: Scanning & Planning
Nov 22, 2017 • 52 min
More mobile life & iOS automation talk: 1. Using Scanbot (and not Evernote) for document safekeeping 2. Optimizing Magic Spreadsheet for iPhone, tracking time spent, micro-journaling
120: Spanglish
Nov 15, 2017 • 54 min
Part 2 of our discussion on: - How to develop a better accent in a foreign language - Michael’s story of learning Spanish - Duolingo and computer-aided language learning
119: The Polyglots
Nov 9, 2017 • 49 min
The story of how Michael and Radek learned English, German, and other languages. Michael’s way was to watch lots of movies and sing lots of songs. Meanwhile, Radek plugs in historical spaced repetition learning data from his very first magic spreadsheet…
118: More Than Good Enough
Nov 3, 2017 • 46 min
After a few months of heavy iPad use, Radek admits: despite its (obvious) flaws and limitations, iPad Pro is a surprisingly good computer. There’s still ways to go, but with some determination and a shift in mindset, there are very few things you can’t do…
117: Notch of the Future
Oct 25, 2017 • 46 min
Discussing the good, the bad, and the ugly of the iPhone X. Also: Wireless charging everywhere, ARM on the Mac, iPhone multitasking.
116: App of the Reunion
Oct 18, 2017 • 45 min
Like every half a year, we reunite in one physical location, this time: Wrocław. We talk about learning languages, beers, Taiwan, and the low-carb diet.
115: Triathlons
Oct 14, 2017 • 37 min
Michael celebrates his tenth triathlon, explains how he got into it and tries to persuade Radek to compete as well.
114: Panamá
Oct 4, 2017 • 54 min
About Radek’s trip to Panama, along with a bunch of traveling pro tips. The art of packing – how to pack for 13 days in a regular backpack. Modern materials and packing for a wide range of temperatures. Avoiding jetlag.
113: Don’t be creepy
Sep 26, 2017 • 35 min
If you’re a doctor or a lawyer, you have an ethical obligation to do the right thing for your patient or client. Why aren’t software developers held to the same standard?
112: Pursuit of Essentialism
Sep 18, 2017 • 41 min
Today, we discuss the book Essentialism by Greg McKeown. The goal: designing a simpler, more focused life. Doing less, but better. Cutting down on what’s “good”, but not good enough.
111: Death to Paper
Sep 12, 2017 • 45 min
Michael explains how he uses Evernote. This was going to be a boring episode about note taking. Turns out, this is a powerful system that completely removes the need for storing paper. All of the 13,000 notes, documents, receipts, health records, are…
110: Non-Violent Communication
Sep 7, 2017 • 44 min
Today, we discuss Non-Violent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg: Resolving conflicts with other people, taking responsibility for your own life, finding empathy for yourself. PS. Apologies for being not one, but two weeks late!
109: Workflow to the rescue
Aug 16, 2017 • 49 min
Taking iOS automation up to eleven. Featuring: making Magic Spreadsheet work on iPhone using Workflow, smart checklists in Nozbe, journaling Workflows, Automator on the Mac, URL schemes, and finally… how Radek made an iPhone day planning app by stringing…
108: iPad Consultations
Aug 8, 2017 • 34 min
Michael teaches Radek how to be more productive on an iPad. Featuring: using Evernote (or Notes) as a temporary files storage, solving drag&drop issues with web apps, limitations of Dropbox, and putting it all together to make complex workflows easy.
107: Simplify everything
Aug 1, 2017 • 45 min
Habits, systems, and reminders are crucial, but it is possible to go too far and end up hoarding them. Every now and then, it’s worth questioning which are really essential, and which no longer serve a purpose; what can be removed, simplified, automated,…
106: Combined Twitter&Instagram Moment
Jul 27, 2017 • 52 min
Part 2 of our discussion on reducing the cognitive load of notifications, and loosening the grip of social media addiction. We’ve made some changes and simplifications since the last episode and we have some pro tips to share!
105: Twitter detox
Jul 19, 2017 • 39 min
Discussion on distractions and addiction, and how that relates to software we use. We forgot how to be bored for even 30 seconds, and we fill even the smallest slices of our time by responding to notifications and with social media. Just so we can have…
104: A Guide to the Good Life
Jul 12, 2017 • 48 min
Part 2 of our discussion of Stoicism and the book “A Guide to the Good Life”. Be sure to check out Part 1 first.
103: Stoicism
Jul 2, 2017 • 41 min
We discuss “A Guide to the Good Life”, a modern, approachable introduction to Stoicism. A philosophy of life easy to dismiss as a boring piece of history not applicable to modern life, but in reality, a tremendously useful bag of psychological tricks that…
102: iPad Only
Jun 26, 2017 • 64 min
Michael tries to sell Radek on the idea of using an iPad as your main (or only) computer. Radek remains skeptical, but buys the new iPad Pro anyway.
101: WWDC 2017
Jun 20, 2017 • 52 min
Radek and Michael comment on Apple’s announcements on Worldwide Developers Conference this year. (This is our take on what’s significant, and what’s missing — we assume you already know the news)
100: Two years
Jun 13, 2017 • 43 min
This week, we’re celebrating our one hundredth episode of The Podcast. Sharing the story of how this show came to be, how it evolved with us over time, and where its future lies.
99: Bring magic back
May 29, 2017 • 41 min
Our thoughts and wishes for Apple’s WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) next week.
98: Stop Stealing Dreams
May 23, 2017 • 46 min
Continuing from last week, this is part two of our rant on the education system. We argue that it was fundamentally designed for a different era, designed to produce obedient workers, efficient at performing arbitrary tasks. Not necessarily to teach you…
97: Schooling
May 18, 2017 • 42 min
Part one of our rant on the education system. Our experiences are quite different: Michael had a great time in his 5 years of university; Radek never went to college at all. We both agree, though, that the way schooling is done is deeply flawed, outdated,…
96: Working while traveling
May 11, 2017 • 38 min
At Nozbe, everyone works remotely. Usually that means, from home. But sometimes, we work even more remotely — while traveling. We share tips on how we pull this off, how to be productive while in such an imperfect work environment.
95: Living in the future
May 4, 2017 • 35 min
Future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed. It’s fun, if sometimes frustrating, to live in the future — use the hardware, work, learn, and live like people will in the future.
94: Insanely Simple
Apr 25, 2017 • 30 min
Discussing simplicity, Steve Jobs, communication styles, empathy, and other thoughts from the book “Insanely Simple”.
93: Dare to try
Apr 19, 2017 • 45 min
Why is studying productivity a worthwhile pursuit? Many people assume it’s all useless — and much of it is! Like with dieting, it’s a field filled with charlatans promising amazing results with barely any effort at all. Yet, underneath all the nonsense is…
92: Fooled by Randomness
Apr 12, 2017 • 42 min
A random, rambly discussion about a rambly book on randomness.
91: Best city
Apr 5, 2017 • 35 min
Live from the twice-a-year Nozbe Reunion in Toruń!
90: Too risky
Mar 28, 2017 • 42 min
Feel free to skip this one, because this week we’re breaking all the rules about not getting in trouble on the internet… to talk about politics. Yes, really.
89: Shutdown ritual
Mar 22, 2017 • 34 min
Idleness is good for the brain. After a day of hard, deep work, you ought to disconnect from work completely, shut it down, and recharge for the next day. Commit to this, work can wait. Radek shares a little habit he’s developed to help maintain this…
88: Solitude
Mar 14, 2017 • 50 min
Technology grab bag: Bose QC35 review, some thoughts on new iPad and iPhone rumors, and an update to Radek’s MacBook Pro review
87: Sleep Smarter
Mar 8, 2017 • 39 min
Everyone knows that sleep is important (or so we hope), but it isn’t just the quantity of sleep that matters, it’s the quality of sleep as well. There’s a ton of little factors that influence both how long and how well you sleep. On this episode, we’ll be…
86: Perfect week
Mar 1, 2017 • 35 min
Michael Sliwinski shares a pro tip he learned from Michael Hyatt: how to design a template for your ideal week. A good routine is helpful for productivity.
85: Magic Spreadsheet
Feb 21, 2017 • 37 min
Rapid improvement (at anything!) requires a tight feedback loop. And for a feedback loop, you need… well, feedback — data. Radek had been tracking lots of such data (weight, habits, hours spent on different projects) in a big spreadsheet for almost 7…
84: From reading to doing
Feb 15, 2017 • 38 min
How do you turn reading into action? It’s good to read lots of books, but if you’re neglecting to actually apply the things you’ve learned to your life, then it’s barely more than a form of intellectual entertainment.
83: 10 years of Nozbe special
Feb 7, 2017 • 54 min
This one’s different. We’re celebrating Nozbe’s 10th birthday!
82: Planning 2017
Jan 31, 2017 • 48 min
A year of your life is precious. Instead of just going with the flow (and often, ending up nowhere), it’s worth taking a deliberate approach to planning your year. Every year. Not “New Year’s Resolutions”, no. Those never work. An actual plan, with goals…
81: Deliberate Practice
Jan 25, 2017 • 34 min
Real world examples of how we applied ideas from “Peak” in our lives to learn faster and better.
80: Peak
Jan 17, 2017 • 38 min
We’re back from our winter break, and this week we’re discussing the book Peak. We want to understand, on a deeper level, how people become good at what they do, and what’s the best approach to learning. Peak offers important clues towards the answer. In…
79: Inevitable transition
Dec 28, 2016 • 38 min
Continuing our conversation from last week, we share some more thoughts about the future of Mac. (Hint: it’s switching to the ARM architecture). This is our last episode of the year! We’ll be back in two weeks.
78: Underwhelming Performance
Dec 20, 2016 • 46 min
Radek reviews the new MacBook Pro (with Touch Bar).
77: Ego is the enemy
Dec 13, 2016 • 42 min
At every stage of our lives, when we aspire, succeed, or fail, our ego is the enemy. It’s too easy to fall into the trap of ego and start believing your own delusions and hubris, that you’re smarter and better than you really are, that it’s others that…
76: Management by walking around
Dec 6, 2016 • 42 min
Discussing more unorthodox ideas about running a business from Under New Management. Trying to figure out why so many companies believe that open-space offices are a good thing. Discussing salary transparency — we’re not doing it, but maybe we should?
75: Under New Management
Nov 29, 2016 • 39 min
The way today’s companies are ran closely mimics the management methods of the industrial revolution era firms. But the realities of modern organizations — that rely mostly on knowledge and creative work — is very different. Just like the world has moved…
74: Disrupted
Nov 22, 2016 • 37 min
Briefly reviewing Disrupted by Dan Lyons, and more generally discussing and criticizing the startup culture. A cautionary tale.
73: Quarterly Offsite
Nov 15, 2016 • 46 min
Personal Quarterly Offsite (or just “quarterly review”) is your feedback loop for life. Every three months, you give a day to yourself to review your whole life, reflect deeply, learn from your mistakes, and make plans and decisions for the next quarter.…
72: Accept your weakness
Nov 9, 2016 • 38 min
Continuing our discussion about morning routines, we talk about how we design our week to make productivity easy. Pro-Tip: Productivity becomes much simpler once you accept your weaknesses as a human being.
71: Friction Management
Nov 3, 2016 • 43 min
Radek shares some pro-tips and brain hacks he used to regain control over his morning routine. The first step is to wake up early and consistently, and that’s hard. The second step is to get rid of the compulsive Twitter reading habit in the morning. And…
70: People want to work
Oct 25, 2016 • 39 min
​Live from this week’s Nozbe Reunion, we review how the TGIF policy has been working for us in the past 10 weeks. Turns out, it’s not so easy to make people work less. But we’ve learned a lot, we’ll be tweaking the process a bit, and we’ll keep doing it!…
69: Sharing
Oct 18, 2016 • 42 min
Continuing our conversation last week, we’re discussing how sharing, cooperation, and remixing are slowly changing our lifes and businesses.
68: The Inevitable
Oct 11, 2016 • 44 min
Discussing ideas from “The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future”.
67: David and Goliath
Oct 4, 2016 • 48 min
We’re continuing last week’s discussion, and sharing ideas about how to thrive when your competition is bigger and stronger. As a small company, a tiny team, or an indie, you’re a David, and to win with your Goliath, you ought to do things they don’t,…
66: Guerrilla Development
Sep 27, 2016 • 41 min
One does not win a war against a vastly stronger enemy by going head to head against it. No, to have a chance of winning, you need to play a different game altogether, and turn your opponent’s strengths into weaknesses. Warfare metaphors aside, it’s also…
65: Request for comments
Sep 22, 2016 • 45 min
At every company, communication overhead becomes a real sink for time and energy. And the larger you get, the greater the overhead. It’s prudent to optimize how you communicate and collaborate, so you can get the biggest bang for your buck. Communicate…
64: Garbage collection
Sep 13, 2016 • 37 min
There’s no speed limit to how fast you can learn. But you can’t just upload information into your brain either. To learn faster, it’s important to understand the nature of how we remember things. This week we discuss the spaced repetition learning…
63: Show me
Sep 6, 2016 • 46 min
Discussing insights from How to Fly a Horse. Everybody can be creative, but creative thinking doesn’t exist. Creation is not inspiration, but iteration. It takes time, and lots of work. And you have to become comfortable with this. Brainstorming doesn’t…
62: Path to the end
Aug 30, 2016 • 31 min
Continuing our conversation about ideas and insights from Smarter Faster Better: discussing how team norms shape the way we work together, empathy, changing your mind quickly and often, copying, and remixing ideas.
61: Take the blame
Aug 23, 2016 • 47 min
Book corner! This week, we discuss ideas we learned from Charles Duhigg’s newest book, Smarter Faster Better. Among others, we discuss why employers should get out the way of your employees, give them trust and responsibility; how you should make plans so…
60: TGIF
Aug 17, 2016 • 35 min
Michael wants his employees to work less and still pay them the same. He might be crazy. We’re implementing a new, experimental policy at Nozbe, where everyone works at full thrust from Monday through Thursday, and then on Friday, after a few meetings,…
59: Abolishing hierarchies
Aug 10, 2016 • 38 min
Thoughts on software design. What we do with user feedback, how we prioritize new features, teach users good habits through interface design, and try to strike a balance between “simple” and “powerful”. Also a brief discussion about iOS 10.
58: Peer Mentoring
Aug 3, 2016 • 37 min
Michael explains what it means to him to mentor and be mentored. It’s not what you might expect — not a master-student relationship, rather, it’s about peers exchanging ideas and points of view. Teaching and being taught at the same time.
57: Discomfort routine
Jul 27, 2016 • 42 min
Radek started waking up so early, no one can believe this is even possible. (Isn’t this weird that when we hit the snooze button, procrastination is literally the first thing we do in a day? How could that be a good thing?) Also a discussion about…
56: Thought leadering
Jul 20, 2016 • 38 min
Michael rethinks his strategy for blogging and spreading the word about #NoOffice. The plan: one solid blog post a week to blog his way to writing the NoOffice book.
55: Ten years from now
Jul 14, 2016 • 42 min
Answering common questions and criticisms about high book consumption. Why it doesn’t matter how many books you read will you remember 10 years from now. Why having a lot of (often contradictory) mental models is crucial. Why it’s important to have time…
54: Forget the fireplace
Jul 7, 2016 • 49 min
There is no such thing as reading too many books. (Or if there is, it’s certainly way above the 30 books per year rate both Michael and Radek find easy to achieve.) Each new book compliments the previous one, adding to your trove of knowledge, ideas, and…
53: Originals
Jun 30, 2016 • 46 min
What does it take for individuals and organizations to be original and creative? Michael and Radek share their favorite bits from Originals — Adam Grant’s newest book that tries to answer these very questions. We talk about why quantity vs quality is a…
52: 6 degrees of Elon Musk
Jun 22, 2016 • 45 min
Radek shares more of his experiences from the WWDC/San Francisco trip. More tips for attending conferences. About almost knowing Elon Musk, and why it’s not worth being a jerk. And on connecting the dots.
51: WWDC 2016
Jun 16, 2016 • 34 min
Live from (surprisingly cold) California, Radek joins Michael to talk about the news from Apple on the Worldwide Developers Conference and how they affect us and Nozbe, our product.
50: Four Disciplines
Jun 8, 2016 • 54 min
Today, we discuss ideas from The 4 Disciplines of Execution — a book describing a system for achieving goals among the whirlwind of everyday life. Also: celebrating our 50th episode, Radek is going to WWDC, and basketball and rocket corners!
49: Zero sum game
Jun 1, 2016 • 41 min
This is such an important idea. We all know this, but few of us actually internalize this truth: The competition for our time and attention is a zero sum game. No matter how hard you try, a day is 24 hours long. We have to be brutal in refusing to do…
48: Three-point-three wave
May 25, 2016 • 40 min
Michael reviews The Third Wave (two homonymous books by Alvin Toffler and Steve Case). And Radek is going to San Francisco for Apple’s WWDC conference. Nozbe: Works on Mars™ (or money back guaranteed). Your move, Elon Musk.
47: Quit social media
May 18, 2016 • 45 min
Your day is 24 hours long, and there’s nothing you can do to change that. Which means, competition for your time and attention is a zero sum game. Doing one thing means you’re not doing another. And some things are more valuable than others. It’s not…
46: Deep Work
May 11, 2016 • 47 min
We live very distracted lives and most of our working days are filled with shallow tasks and interruptions. In this age when more and more jobs are being automated, we can get a competitive edge if we get good at performing deep work — important work at…