Story In A Bottle Podcast

Kevin Kearney is one of the foremost thought leaders of user experience in the industry. He studied literature and philosophy, but transitioned to a career in UX largely before the discipline existed. Websites were haphazardly assembled with few goals and considerations for the end user. Kevin knew there had to be a better way.  It was after many years of working for big agencies (such as razorfish) and big media companies (such as Hulu) that he became frustrated with the soulless processes and smoke in mirrors of advertising. Together with our host, Dan Maccarone, he was  inspired to try to make it better on his own by founding the agency Hard Candy Shell. In his own words he knows he's "not curing cancer, just trying to make the world suck less". 

Over a bottle of High West Double Rye, we began one of our most personal stories to date. Kevin shared the fundamental pieces important to user experience: caring about people and checking one’s ego at the door; a compassion that will continue to better the internet as we know it. 

Direct download: SIAB_KKearney_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:43am EST

In the digital universe, Allison Mooney plays a role which is rare and invaluable in what makes and breaks a product’s success; in identifying trends, she has her finger on the pulse of how people are engaging, which is often an undervalued piece of the industry. But this isn't new territory for her.

In fact, it was early in her career at Details magazine where she began to see the writing on the wall: recognizing how important the Web would be for content and finding early insights in the significance of mobile. It was that keen awareness which lead her to become the Head of Trends for Google and editor-in-chief of Think with Google, where she currently preaches what she practices: letting digital and data be the heart and start of what comes next for products and brands alike (versus being the last minute add on or falling by the wayside entirely).

As such, and as the co-host of the BCC party, one of NYC Tech's most attended monthly gatherings, Alli has established herself as a consistently important and friendly voice in the industry. Cheers to that!

Check out @allimooney for more of what she’s up to.

Direct download: SIAB_AMooney_v3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:09am EST

Jonathan Basker has spent his career becoming an expert in people. As a self-described “dork” in his early years growing up in sleepy Issaquah, WA (fun fact: where Harry and the Hendersons was filmed) and majoring in poetry in University of Washington, it is certainly an unexpected career trajectory. However, with a life that has been split between traveling the world and helping growing companies like Betaworks, Etsy, and BarkBox find the right teams, he's studied humans in myriad cultures; learning lessons along the way which are  applicable to startups and individuals alike.


In this episode we hear how all of this knowledge lead him to eventually found a company of his own, his newest venture, Basker & Co, as well as the critical lessons he has learned along the way in company culture, leadership and how to hire and grow companies successfully. And, as you listen, you may notice some stronger than normal language due to the excessive amount of WhistlePig Rye ...and Porkslap consumed.

For more words of wisdom, see @basker tweets.

Direct download: SIAB_JBasker_v6.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:35pm EST


Kate Lee is a Senior Editor at; a role which is the perfect culmination of the career path that precedes it. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, she started her career as a reporter for US Weekly. However, at a time when the internet had not yet entrenched the magazine world, Kate still turned to it, and the early world of blogs for inspiration. It was in her next job, as a literary assistant-turned-agent at International Creative Management, that this inspiration turned into much more; a niche offering which Kate found a competitive edge while helping to actualize the true potential of some of the prominent voices of the budding digital landscape. However, as the internet grew, what once was the source of her success eventually became her biggest obstacle. When ebooks and Amazon shook that world, Kate made the leap from a 10 year career for something new.


After spending some time consulting and soul searching (and a period of daily afternoon naps), she ultimately found her place at Medium where her current role allows her to continue to give prominent people the opportunity to share their point of view with a global audience. While the entirety of her career was not spent with a digital focus, it was certainly a major influence; one which she is continuing to learn about and directly impact with her gift of finding the industries boldest voices.

To see her in action, check out or holler at @katelaurielee.

Direct download: SIAB_KLee_v3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:24am EST