Online resources for business starters

Rework      Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

Starting a tech business is difficult for many reasons. Your odds of success are low, it is an enormous amount of work, it is hard to find partners, it can be difficult to stay motivated and there is a steep learning curve. Of course there are an equal amount of benefits like the satisfaction of solving a problem, the freedom, the thrill and most importantly doing something you are passionate about everyday.

I hope this list of my favorite websites/books will help you stay motivated and help overcome that learning curve.

Hosted by Amber MacArthur and Leo Laporte on TWiT.
A mix of news, media and interviews in the Web 2.0 space. The interviews run about 20 minutes and range from the biggest to the smallest websites. This is a great podcast to keep you up to date on the newest and most interesting social sites on the Web.

This Week In StartUps
Hosted by Jason Calacanis on
This is a show specifically designed to help business starters in the tech industry. There are a mix of segments including Ask Jason where viewers ask Jason startup related question, Shark Tank where viewers are rated on their 60 second startup pitch and an interview with a guest. The show always has in  depth and lengthy interviews with founders. The discussion is always fascinating in a way you would expect from two people passionate about tech. It is certainly a different kind of interview than what you would find on Charlie Rose.

Stanford University's Entrepreneurship Corner 
No host just a guest speaker every week.
Here is another great podcast specifically for entrepreneurs. Each week during the academic year there is a 1 hour lecture by a guest speaker each with diverse backgrounds. The site is well structured so you can skip to important points in the lecture. This is probably the only place you will hear a 1 hour lecture on entrepreneurship from Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, Marc Andreessen and more all in one place.

Host: Kevin Rose
A new podcast at the time of writing with the same type of honest and unique discussion you would find on This Week In StartUps. If you pay for the video you get it one week early packaged with a weekly newsletter by Kevin.

Company Blogs
They are known for their simple and elegant hosted project management software and the Ruby on Rails Framework. It seems like they started the trend of companies sharing knowledge with the community through books, blogs and even source code. They are of my most favorite examples of a startup ( even though they've been around for 13 years ) because of their unconventional wisdom, which they have learned through experience like their opinons on sustained company growth, productivity or even how to write a book. Highly recommended.

These guys are a Toronto web startup in the online invoicing market. They are one of the few Canadian companies here who embody the Silicon Valley spirit. For example, they give back to the startup community by being very transparent on their blogs about lessons they learned along the way and by hosting TechTalks.

The business philosophies from the guys at 37Signals condensed into a lean 288 pages. Each timbit of knowledge is said in as few words as possible, which makes it easy to remember and perfect for someone who just wants to get down to work.

Delivering Happiness
Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

The story how Zappos became a company with a reputation of amazing customer service and how a healthy company culture lead to their success. This book is still on my read list because I have heard the founder, Tony Shey, speak so many times that I feel like I've already read it, but it is definitely worth a look at.

An online crowd funding platform for anyone with a good idea. They have a novel funding model where you only receive your donations if you meet your funding goal within a pre specified period of time. Donators do not take any equity.

Hacker News: A digg style news aggregator from Y Combinator with very unique content geared towards software engineers and business starters
TechCrunch: Acquisitions, rumors, opinions and speculation about the startup world
Mashable: Web 2.0 realtime social news
Ars Technica: In depth analysis on tech news, tech law, open source, and the occasional guide

These are some of my top motivation tools and resources, but if you think I forgot to mention something feel free to add it in the comments.

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