The Four Steps to the Epiphany (Четыре Шага к Озарению) is now available in Russian.
Thanks to Denis Dovgopoliy for making the Russian version happen.
It joins the French version: Les quatre étapes vers l’épiphanie
and the Japanese version アントレプレナーの教科書 [単行本（ソフトカバー）
Pay It Forward
What’s pretty remarkable is these translations are not from a commercial publisher, but rather a labor of entrepreneurial love. All these translations have been crowd-sourced.
Entrepreneurs from Japan, France and now Russia believed they could help startups in their country if the Four Steps to the Epiphany was available in their native tongue. They translated it at their own expense. These are the first three translations and more are underway.
These individuals are “paying it forward” for their communities and country’s. Thousands of entrepreneurs are better for their efforts.
Blame it On Eric
We can blame it all on Eric Ries. When Eric was my student in one of the first Berkeley Customer Development classes, he suggested that I take my class notes, which until then had been printed at Cafepress.com, and offer it widely on Amazon. He said, “I bet there are a few people outside the class who might like to read it.” I photoshopped a cover for my notes, called it the Four Steps to the Epiphany, and bet him he was wrong. He won the bet.
What A Long Strange Trip It’s Been
I was going to end this post here, but it’s late at night at the ranch and the coyotes are howling in the distance and somewhere closer, out in the redwoods, there’s a barn owl hooting in the trees.
Seeing this book in Russian for me is more than just another translation.
As a child, my mother fled the Soviet Union smuggled out in a hay cart in the middle of Russian Civil war. Until she died, she reminded me that on the way to Ellis Island, her first view of the United States was the Statue of Liberty in New York harbor - and she never looked back. (As kids we memorized the poem inside the statue.)
When I was growing up the odds were pretty low that the Cold War war would end with a whimper rather than a bang. Both the U.S. and the Soviet Union trained daily to kill hundreds of millions of people. Entrepreneurship was a crime in the Soviet Union. In the 1970′s the Soviet military was on the ascendency and wasn’t at all clear that the 20th century would end as the American century (or with 15,000 targeted nuclear warheads, anyones century.)
I spent my late teens here and my early 20′s here next to the sharp end of the spear, and this was no videogame. (There’s equal part irony and satisfaction that Silicon Valley and semiconductor fabs had a role in the demise of the Soviet Union.)
When the Cold War ended I waited for the victory parade down Main Street.
We never did have a parade, but as a consolation prize there’s now a McDonalds in Red Square, entrepreneurship is trying to blossom in a place that had 60 U.S. nuclear weapons aimed at it, my book (a revolutionary manual for capitalism,) is in Russian, and I’ve been asked to give my Secret History of Silicon Valley talk when I visit Moscow for the first time in September.
Filed under: Customer Development