Episode 20: So Successful He Fired Himself with Marco Arment (Part 1)

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Marco Arment has had two main acts in this life: as the first employee of Tumblr, he helped create a service that changed the fundamental nature of blogging by introducing both ease of creation and social networking. While still there, he toyed with a service to let him read Web pages offline without formatting, that became Instapaper. He left Tumblr to focus on that service full time in late 2010. Now Marco, also a successful podcaster, the editorial director of The Magazine, the best publication ever created ā€” and at which I'm the editor and he's my boss! (I still have a job after we recorded the podcast.)

Our conversation will be aired in two parts, each about an hour long. In this first part, we talk about how Tumblr developer, Marco's knowledge that he didn't want to manage people, how Instapaper developed, and issues of managing resources and scaling. In the second, we move further into podcasting, The Magazine, blogging, advertising, and other areas.

On Twitter, Marco Arment, Instapaper, and The Magazine.

Show Notes

David Karp founded Tumblr when he was about 19. Marco didn't know Karp's age for a while after he started. Instapaper was a side project that grew into a business. Marco opened it to the public during January 2008 not expecting an avalanche of interest.

Cloud hosting comes in many forms. Amazon's EC2 is per-hour on-demand hosting, while Linode offers dedicated virtual machines. My plumber suffers from the curse of great reviews on Yelp.

We mentioned a few very popular games on iOS that are outliers: Doodle Jump and Pocket Tanks, a Scorched Tanks clone.

Marco's post about Game of Thrones explains why it may be expedient to pirate media you can't buy but nobody owes you the right to obtain media. Marco co-hosted Build and Analyze for a couple of years, and the archives are good listening.

Kids, a cassette tape was a many-feet-long string of magnetically coated plastic that was spooled on reels and protected inside a sealed plastic shell. One could use it to record and play back analog audio using a "tape recorder."