Cover photo for Philip I. Thomas

Philip I. Thomas

I work on Find AI, a search engine for companies and people that I co-founded. I write at Contraption Co. about the future of online work.

I'm interested in coffee, craftsmanship, fermentation, and urbanism. I'm based in NYC, but often explore other cities.

In the past, I founded Moonlight and Staffjoy, and worked at Webflow, Trusted Health, and OpenDNS. I advise startups like Velvet and Dawn Health.

Contact me at

What I'm up to - June 2024

Here's my monthly newsletter (a couple of weeks late!) about what I'm up to, which I send in place of social media. What I did in May  • Summer weather has hit NYC - it's great to be back outside • Published a podcast about creator versus software businesses • Published a video of live-coding an AI feature on Booklet • Built a lot of Booklet features - auto-linking of URLs, a public API, the ability to disable the membership directory, anti-scraping protections on emails, a new writing UI, and a Zapier integration.  • Went to a concert under the Kosciuszko Bridge, which was such a cool venue. Things to share • Books: Unreasonable Hospitality was a fun look at how Will Guidara built the #1 restaurant in the world to balance art and business. I've also been re-reading What I Know About Running Coffee Shops. The Interior Design Handbook explains Scandanavian design and how to achieve hygge. Algebra of Wealth distills some good advice. • Coffee: I've been having a lot of espresso tonics this week- perhaps it will be my Summer drink. • Companies: I'm obsessed with CW&T, a little physical product studio in Brooklyn. I don't own any of their products (yet!), but I love their approach to building. • Articles: "Turn your iPhone into a dumb phone" taught me how to quickly switch between grayscale and color mode. "Why Members-Only Clubs Are Everywhere Right Now" shows the unbundling of the office with remote work and people seeking out-of-home spaces. "Colorado's Bold New Approach to Highways" is great. This article about Kintsugi is inspiring - we have one vase repaired with gold, and perhaps I'll repair more. The Economist' Style Guide as a ChatGPT prompt. Is parallel entrepreneurship / the "studio" model a trap? (2012) • Music: Ivy Queen Tiny Desk. Promises is such a cool collaboration. • Apps: OpenAI for Mac is surprisingly good and keeps AI help just a quick keyboard shortcut away. • Videos: About Gotye - an independent musician.  • Trends: I've been trying to buy mostly plastic-free clothing. It's surprisingly hard.  • Words: A flock of ravens is an unkindness. Bildungsroman is a cool word. • Food: I've made a loose habit of going to the #1 restaurant in the world most years since since 2017. I find it inspiring to see what elite performance looks like in food, and what goes into achieving it. So, I was excited to see Disfrutrar named #1 in the world for 2024 - I had visited there in November and found the food to be innovative. (I won't go back to Disfrutar this year, so I've decided to go to the 2022 #1 restaurant - which I had missed.) Plans for June • Just moved within NYC - I'm now living closer to Washington Square Park. • NY Tech Week had some fun events.  • Visited Cleveland for four hours. • Building! Where I'll be  • NYC
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