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Today we’re launching TRACK CHANGES, a new podcast about technology and culture hosted by Paul Ford and Rich Ziade, the founders of Postlight. The podcast will be mix of conversation, debate, Q&A, and interviews — and it’s early days, so your feedback and suggestions for things for Rich and Paul to argue/talk about are more than welcome. Here it is on SoundCloud.

In our first episode, Paul and Rich discuss Silicon Valley (one seems to vaguely enjoy his visits; the other is deeply unimpressed). They then open the debate to Jon Lax, director of product design at Facebook, who made the move to the Bay Area from Toronto last year.

Jon has been working in digital media for more than two decades: before heading to Facebook, Jon spent twelve years as a partner at Teehan+Lax, whose clients included Medium, Google, YouTube, GM, and Delta Airlines.


Selected conversation

Jon: I remember building some web page in ’93 or ’94 and putting up on my university web service we had some horrific URL structure.

Paul: ~/jlax39

Jon: Exactly. Then like a day later cracking open the log file, and seeing that fourteen people had been to the page.

Paul: Fourteen new friends.

Jon: They weren’t even friends, they were just number! I feel like I’ve kind of been chasing that dragon — the rush that I got is that I made something that someone at least visited or “used,” was just incredibly compelling to me.

Richard: Sure.

Paul: I remember looking at the logs and it’d be, like, someone from London. And you would be like “Whoa! I have international impact.”

Jon: Mind blown, right? I think that my career has on some level just been chasing that upwards, up the curve.

Rich: So you’re very ego-driven?

Jon: [laughs] I guess but I don’t think of it as —

Rich: There’s nothing wrong with that.

Jon: I just think of it as I like making things that people use.