Fun Friday: Year End Lists

It's been a month since we've done a fun friday around here. Getting much too serious it seems. So let's do one today. It's year end and time for year end lists. Here are some that I saw and liked:

The New Yorker's Best Books of 2013, Part 1

The New York Times 10 Best Books of 2013

The New Yorker Best Movies of 2013

Cliff Chenfeld's Music Picks for 2013

Kirk Love's Top 10 Albums and Songs for 2013

works in progress:

my songs of the year (i will publish this at some point in the next week)

Brian's best of 2013

Ok, that's enough from me. Please share your favorite year end lists in the comments.

#Random Posts

Comments (Archived):

  1. Yalim K. Gerger

    Best of Pocket in 2013, the read it later service. Most read articles in 2013 by the Pocket app users, organized by category. Some real gems in there.

    1. fredwilson


      1. Yalim K. Gerger

        Pocket did a very smart promotion. They sent each user how they rank among other users in terms of number of words they’ve read in Pocket. Since people are sucker for this kind of stuff, the thing went viral immediately. I’d be curious to find out how many new users they’ve acquired this way.Here is my stats page for example. (Oh the vanity πŸ™‚ )…

    2. William Mougayar

      Pocket is great for surfacing the most popular articles. They say 450 million items have been shared. I had no idea they had that scale, but they could be double counting similar items as “shared”.

    3. Matt Zagaja

      Honestly was disappointed by the content in these lists, though I thought the content in the science section was good, and George Packer’s article in the politics list was also a good one. So here are my own:Marty Sullivan figured out how the world’s biggest companies avoided billions in taxes. Here’s how he wants to stop them:…How the NFL Fleeces Taxpayers…Marissa Mayer’s Business Insider Biography (Long, 85 minute read)…What Kind of City is the Mayor Leaving to His Successor (on Bloomberg and NYC)…Michael Lewis – Did Goldman Sachs Overstep in Criminally Charging its Ex-Programmer –…Atul Gawande – How Do Good Ideas Spread? –…Sequestrations Biggest Victim: The Public Defender System –…The Story of Washington Gridlock seen through the eyes of Bob Dole –…We Gained Hope The Story of Lilly Grossman’s Genome –…Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills are Killing Us –

      1. Yalim K. Gerger

        I hear you. It’s the most read articles list, not the best articles list. So it must be taken with a grain of salt. Most read is not a perfect proxy for best content.

  2. awaldstein

    Need to do a shout out to Kirk Love for his music on Tumblr. Adds a bit to my day, each day.I”ve already shared his year’s best list.

    1. kirklove

      Thanks Arnold πŸ™‚

  3. Josh

    I created a hackpad titled “AVC Booklist 2013”:…It would be neat if every one shares their favorite book of 2013.I started it off with “The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the age of Amazon”Looking forward to finding some great books πŸ™‚

    1. Rohan

      Love the idea. good stuff. Thanks JoshPS: I’ve added all favorite books among the ones I read in 2013. Not sure if they were necessarily published this year. Hope that still counts. πŸ™‚

      1. Josh

        Thanks Rohan – some good books on there!

        1. tyronerubin

          also using this @rrohan189:disqus and @joshposner:disqus thanks!

        2. Rohan

          Looks like this one didn’t catch on. What a pity! πŸ™‚

    2. Elia Freedman

      Great idea! I was going to add a book until I saw someone added Malcolm Gladwell and I had to walk away. (Only partially kidding. I’ll have to do it from my desktop.)

    3. ShanaC

      The circle….even though I hated it

  4. jason wright

    “Getting much too serious it seems”getting too racist. you gonna let ‘IQ’ pass without comment?

    1. Cam MacRae

      Yep. My esteem for this place is somewhat diminished.

      1. JamesHRH

        Easy partner, I had a poke @ Dave. He did not respond.He is in an area that is ripe for discussion but also ripe for wildly offensive verbiage.The basic facts back him up: european cultures create wealth. There are a lot of arguments to be had in that spot (is wealth a good thing? what drives the culture of european nations to build wealth? what is the euro influence in Central / South America – lots of negative things to be said here about euro culture, etc. etc. etc.).His IQ statement is completely fallacious on several footings, obviously.What I think is a scary trend is this: the older a culture, the more likely it is that the majority of the wealth is controlled by an absurd minority.Is it inevitable?

        1. Cam MacRae

          Nope. Won’t take it easy. That shit was over the line…e: On further reading back, it wasn’t even Dave’s comments I had in mind, no matter how poorly they sat with me.

          1. JamesHRH

            You can’t jump that far that fast.The topic is not, ipso facto reflective of a highly prejudiced mindset. But, it is also not a valid discussion point – see other comments as to why,

          2. Cam MacRae

            You saw the stuff the other day, right?

          3. JamesHRH

            I did.I think its stupid – not b/c it may spring from a prejudiced mindset, but because any casual analysis would show that ‘collective IQ’ is:1) a specious idea2) pretty low on the list of drivers of living standardsFor instance, I am not a single point of explanation person, but if you asked me for one reason why European based cultures have higher living standards, I would say ‘long cold winters’.Environment shapes culture the most.

          4. LE

            I would say ‘long cold winters’.I’m in agreement with that. That is that things like that matter. And of course you can always come up with some counter examples to any personally observed stereotype. [1]There is never a single point of explanation but sometimes the single point is a big point to overcome. Easier to make the basket if you are 7 feet tall, right?Possibly a reason I’ve believed that Gates decided to stay up north in rainy grim seattle (where he grew up) and that Amazon located there. Same reason I think that the UK is above average as a country. I think the weather played into that over time. Not like you want to be outside when it’s cloudy. [2] I don’t. Same reason that musicians tend to be introverted they have plenty of time to practice not being the most social. Do you think Billy Joel or Bruce Springteen were popular in high school? They weren’t. They also were small and wouldn’t be “sports guys”.Back in the day there were many kids who wanted to go to college in a place that they could ski or had a lot of sun (something in Florida or Colorado). What a waste. You have the rest of your life to have fun. What if Fred hadn’t gone to MIT? And was more worried about having fun in college?[1] Not knowing much about alcoholism (other than the drunk that worked for my dad when I was a kid) my wife turned me on a few years ago to the fact that alcoholics tend to live within walking/cycling distance of liquor stores because they often can’t drive (either money or they have lost their license). I remember being with her and seeing a guy on a bicycle, middle aged, with a brown paper bag and sure enough he had just left the liquor store. Haven’t done a study of course but I will go with that behavior summary.[2] Color is important to happiness and there is no color when it’s cloudy. That’s why you like it when it’s sunny outside. Exception might be the ski slope because of all the white and because cloudy is correlated with more snow which is a positive.

    2. fredwilson

      I dont know what you are talking about. Can you point me in the right direction

      1. JamesHRH

        yesterday, Dave Pinsen.CIted a highly controversial source as evidence that wealth is correlated to national IQ.

      2. LE

        Seems to be this comment.…It’s ironic how people criticize when someone offers their opinion but don’t take the time to even put up a link to what they have said.I have no clue why people are so pissed off about what he said. He stated his opinion and tried to back it up by what he thought was correct. Maybe he didn’t even agree with it but he offered it. For the record I am not friends with Dave and he even has offended me in the past. So I have no reason to defend him at all.I hate subjects that are de facto untouchable. Like “can’t even go there” “can’t even discuss”.Click to enlarge. See how easy I made it to back up my point.

    3. Kirsten Lambertsen

      That isn’t Dave’s first comment here about IQ’s. He and I sparred about it earlier.

      1. JamesHRH

        At best, its a classic case of a pinpoint hypothesis. Single point of causation arguments are a waste of time, because the chances of a single factor driving a major social or cultural phenomenon is, basically, 0%.At worst its a backdoor into a highly prejudiced point of view.So, in summary, the topic is not worthy of discussion.

        1. Kirsten Lambertsen

          What James said ^

  5. Anne Libby

    Have you guys seen Culturalist? They’re a NYC based startup that facilitates lists. About culture!Here’s a list I made over there back in November, on a topic that comes up a lot in my work, empathy. Cleveland Clinic video, awesome. Make sure you’ve got a handkerchief or box of tissues at hand…)Happy Fun Friday.

  6. Tom Labus

    Most intriguing new novel: Night Film…

  7. Jim Peterson

    Blogs I could not delete from feed reader….good ones for tech/biz/ and media entrepreneursA VCAbove the crowdSeth GodinMonday NoteThe Big Red CarSeth Godin

    1. Elia Freedman

      You must really like Seth! You listed it twice.

      1. Jim Peterson

        My bad! Replace one of them with Aimclear

  8. Guest

    not to bring any negativity lol but how bout this guys… some of the worst of 2013http://www.washingtonpost.c…

  9. Brandon Burns

    Best selfies of the year:…My personal fav is Obama with PM Cameron at the Mandela memorial service… and Michelle’s look of disgust.

    1. Cam MacRae

      Love a good media beat up. In the pic they ran here Michelle is laughing along with the joke. #cameraneverlies

    2. JamesHRH

      You would think, by now, he would check her facial expression and use it as a guide for ‘things not to do Pinhead’.

    3. Kirsten Lambertsen

      It was a canard.

    4. LE

      Yeah I loved that as well.I find that fascinating and it shows how you can be the first lady but still suffer from a bit of low self esteem and jealousy because as a woman you have been raised to view beauty as important. [1] Because it is.People tend to be insecure in things that they care about. And less insecure in things that they don’t care about. I’ve given much thought to what pushes people’s buttons and what doesn’t. Michelle isn’t much to look at. I’m sure she dealt with that growing up.For example if you think of yourself as a “smart academic” and you are a professor at a no name college you would tend to feel more insecure around a Harvard professor than would a non academic. The non academic isn’t in that game. Not in the game is important. You can’t lose a game you are not in. I would guess that both of us wouldn’t feel particularly insecure around a big brawny NFL player (I’m a little guy and sports isn’t my thing) and you are an intelligent creative designer type. Don’t think Fred would either. And after all you can always rationalize things as well “well at least I’m a good father/person”.[1] Think Michelle would have cared if the woman was Angela Merkel? Actually she did end up banning Oprah from the whitehouse out of jealousy but that is for a different reason (not beauty but control over her husband and intelligence (see my “in the game”) in my opinion I would offer a different theory entirely to explain that dynamic..)

  10. William Mougayar

    There is a psychology behind lists. I shared this last week on USV:A LIST OF REASONS WHY OUR BRAINS LOVE LISTS…”This type of organization facilitates both immediate understanding and later recall, as the neuroscientist Walter Kintsch pointed out back in 1968. Because we can process information more easily when it’s in a list than when it’s clustered and undifferentiated, like in standard paragraphs, a list feels more intuitive. In other words, lists simply feel better.”

    1. LE

      Agree. I’ve been numbering points that I make in emails and letters (importantly numbering – not bullets) for years when either selling and also when explaining something to a customer. I can’t even remember when I started doing that or why. Definitely something I figured out though. Not something that I read anywhere.I think it ties into and is related my puny brain theory. [1] I don’t like long un-separated information and I find things easier to understand when they are broken into chunks and I can random access the points in any order or get clarification.[1] You need below average people working for you and reviewing your product and all of your communications. Otherwise you might be shooting over the heads of your average or below average customers. Because you are so damn smart you don’t know what it’s like to be them. Don’t make them think as the saying goes.

    2. Jim Peterson

      Thanks for this link!

  11. John Revay

    I saw Bill Gates Best Books read during 2013 come across a twitter feed this AM…

  12. Aaron Klein

    Well, I won’t lie. My favorite year end list was yesterday’s “Morningstar Best Advisor Technology of 2013.” The one where my team’s work was named “Best Client Facing Tech of the Year.” :)Grateful to the AVC community, which I joined in 2009, and was a key factor in deciding to start Riskalyze in 2011.

    1. karen_e


      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks my friend πŸ™‚

    2. PhilipSugar

      Congratulations!!!! That kicks ass, I read the whole review

      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks man. Yeah, we were pretty stoked. That and CNN Money’s “15 Best Financial Apps” list which we were on with Swan’s LikeFolio. πŸ™‚

        1. falicon


    3. awaldstein

      Super thrilled about this. Been a long time believer as you know.

      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks my friend. Grateful for all your contributions.

    4. JamesHRH

      Congratulations. Actual 3P endorsement is powerful stuff.Well done.

      1. Aaron Klein

        Indeed. Especially in the advisor market, which is driven by a herd mentality. It’s been quite powerful. Thanks. πŸ™‚

    5. Kirsten Lambertsen


    6. LE

      Definitely positively don’t put a link to that so that people can see what you are referring to.

      1. Aaron Klein

        Yeah, was on the run this morning and didn’t have the link handy on my phone. πŸ™‚

    7. Elia Freedman

      That’s awesome, Aaron! Congratulations!

      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks my friend. πŸ™‚

    8. Salt Shaker

      Is there a consumer application for this product, or is it just for advisors? I hate to unfairly indict a whole industry, but I do not have a lot of confidence in retail brokers. I did some work for a large mutual fund company a few years ago and had to do a multi-city tour meeting w/ many, many brokers. Hardly engendered any confidence in the sport (certainly not an art) of investing. A lot of babble, talking points and limited knowledge/sophistication.

      1. Aaron Klein

        There isn’t a consumer application today. We’re focused on building the network advisor-first.There is a HUGE difference between brokers (selling you investments on a commission) and advisors, especially “Registered Investment Advisors” or RIAs who have a fiduciary obligation to act in your best interests and are strictly fee-only, no commissions or conflicts.You’ll find a lot more sophistication against those who are practitioners of financial advice vs. commission-driven sales brokers.

        1. Salt Shaker

          Brokers, and (allegedly) the whole financial service food chain, have a fiduciary responsibility and we know how that’s played out. A former colleague of mine was in beta on a Yelp type rating service for brokers/FC’s and he unfortunately got very sick and couldn’t see it through. It’s one thing to provide the financial community w/ better/sophisticated tools, and kudos to you for doing so and your success, but there’s no (objective) way to really vet an FC’s core competences and performance other than by referral.

          1. Aaron Klein

            No, brokers do not have a fiduciary responsibility. That’s part of the problem.Brokers have a duty to assess the suitability of an investment for you. They often do that by having your grandmother sign fine print saying “I think it’s good for me” when they’re selling her the Facebook IPO.There are some interesting folks working on the rating/assessment issue. Definitely not our focus.

          2. Salt Shaker

            Wow, I didn’t realize that Aaron. Thanks for the enlightenment. I assumed since a broker can be sued for negligence that they were fiduciaries.

          3. Aaron Klein

            It’s shocking that it’s still so bad! Nice talking with you.

        2. ShanaC

          How do you find RIA people

          1. Aaron Klein

            We’ve built a marketing and sales machine centered on a diverse set of partnerships, product integrations and then our own outbound team. Fortunately, even though it’s effectively a space we’ve invented, the product seems to sell itself. #GratefulforThat

    9. JimHirshfield


      1. Aaron Klein


    10. Dale Allyn

      Oh come on! The Internet is about Links. <= Riskalyze is mentioned on page 3. Congrats!;)

      1. Aaron Klein

        It’s true. I was on the run this morning when I left that comment so didn’t have the link handy but thanks for sharing it. πŸ™‚

    11. Jim Peterson

      ” The one where my team’s work was named “Best Client Facing Tech of the Year.”That sentence says a lot. My team…

      1. Aaron Klein

        We wouldn’t win an award for Dogcatcher of the Year without these awesome people I get the chance to work with every day. πŸ™‚

    12. Dave Pinsen

      Congrats, awesome news.

    13. William Mougayar

      Congrats Aaron to you and team. Keep ringing that cash register!

      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks William πŸ™‚

    14. Anne Libby


    15. Rohan

      Congratulations Aaron! πŸ™‚

      1. Aaron Klein

        Thanks my friend. πŸ™‚

    16. ShanaC

      Mazel tov

  13. pointsnfigures

    Two: http://www.womenssupportnet… (or google jeff carter women’s support hackpad if link doesn’t work-can’t figure out how to copy and paste on an iPad).Second: political lie of the year from Politifact- you can keep your Heath insurance if you want to.

  14. andyswan

    I liked CNN Money’s List of Top-15 Financial sites/apps for 2013 which included @aaronklein:disqus’s Riskalyze (shareholder/advisor) and @andyswan:disqus’s LikeFolio (founder)BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE

    1. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Wow! That’s awesome, Andy πŸ™‚

    2. LE

      Definitely positively don’t put a link to that so that people can see what you are referring to.

    3. Elia Freedman

      Awesome job, Andy!

    4. awaldstein


    5. Guest

      Interesting how we all mock mainstream journalists until they give us a Happy Ending (cf Swanie Shoots An Air ball et al)

      1. andyswan

        Haha nice. That’s definitely the way to play it.

    6. Dave Pinsen

      Congrats, Andy. You should post your great LikeFolio video here to mark the occasion.

    7. Anne Libby


    8. Rohan

      Congrats Andy

    9. ShanaC

      Ha mazes tov to you tooo

  15. JamesHRH

    I didn’t read many interesting books ( I would recommend John Green’s The Fault in our Stars ), went to 0 movies and don’t make lists of songs. Weird year.But, I would like to contribute and this seemed to fit the AVC mindset:Bertrand Russell’s 10 CommandmentsThe Ten Commandments that, as a teacher, I should wish to promulgate, might be set forth as follows:1) Do not feel absolutely certain of anything.2) Do not think it worth while to proceed by concealing evidence, for the evidence is sure to come to light.3) Never try to discourage thinking for you are sure to succeed.4) When you meet with opposition, even if it should be from your husband or your children, endeavour to overcome it by argument and not by authority, for a victory dependent upon authority is unreal and illusory.5) Have no respect for the authority of others, for there are always contrary authorities to be found.6) Do not use power to suppress opinions you think pernicious, for if you do the opinions will suppress you.7) Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.8) Find more pleasure in intelligent dissent that in passive agreement, for, if you value intelligence as you should, the former implies a deeper agreement than the latter.9) Be scrupulously truthful, even if the truth is inconvenient, for it is more inconvenient when you try to conceal it.10) Do not feel envious of the happiness of those who live in a fool’s paradise, for only a fool will think that it is happiness.

  16. Kirsten Lambertsen

    I don’t seem to have a favorite list that comes to mind. But I liked this

  17. Jim Canto

    Just started listening to your playlist on Spotify. Looking forward to what the next hour has in store. Leads of with Arctic Monkeys. Nice!! Thanks for sharing it, @fredwilson:disqus.On another note; While trying to enter this comment, if I allow my mouse to move off of the Disqus widget, the widget becomes immediately inactive until I click back into it. Just letting you know in the event that is not expected behavior.

  18. JimHirshfield

    YouTube Top Trending Videos of 2013…

  19. kirklove

    Nice company.

  20. Brett Bedevian

    Bill Gates top books…

  21. matthughes

    I just downloaded a copy of The Best American Sports Writing – 2013.…I’m looking forward to some weekend reading.

  22. Pete Griffiths

    Best TV of the Year:1. Breaking Bad

  23. Al Baker

    I was hoping to sign in with my Rdio to see what 2013 songs I listened to the most, but I couldn’t filter it beyond top play count. How did/do you determine your music list?

  24. JJ Donovan

    My favorite list is 365 Days of Inspires me every day!JJD – Hopin’ to be part of the list in 2014..

  25. Emily Merkle

    NPR Best Books 2013…

  26. JamesHRH

    Dave Pinsen, yesterday.