Marc Andreessen — @pmarca


  • 1

    • @DanielleMorrill Tend to be (but not always) higher margin, lower growth, lower ambition, lower tech.
    • @DanielleMorrill Yep! Often straight DCF.
    • @DanielleMorrill Tend to be (but not always) higher margin, lower growth, lower ambition, lower tech.
    • Saw a @pmarca retweet, spent 90 mins watching Peter Thiel. Wrote this post. Twitter is meaningful. http://t.co/4OPpSrRCA5 — (RT @TomShakely)

    3 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 2

    • @patrickc It's not just 70 years of failure. It's 70 years of not even any real theoretical progress. Alan Turing would be flabbergasted.
    • @patrickc "And then magic happens" cranks my skepticism way up. That so rarely actually happens.
    • @patrickc In contrast, for example, there was a 150+ year theoretical run-up to the computer.
    • @patrickc Babbage and Lovelace understood how it would work even if they couldn't build it.
    • @patrickc The last thing I want to be is a tech skeptic :-). But I lose the plot when the handwaving starts, which Strong AI seems to spark.

    4 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 3

    • @patrickc I think computers will continue to evolve down the same kind of parallel path they've been evolving down for 70 years.
    • @patrickc I think they will just become increasingly powerful and sophisticated tools that we will use.
    • @patrickc I don't see any reason to believe there will suddenly be some jump where all of a sudden they are like super-human intelligence.
    • @patrickc Seventy years of AI research and we have yet to make a computer that does anything surprising at all.
    • @patrickc Put another way, I think computers complement humans, vs compete with humans, and that continues indefinitely.
    • @patrickc Or another way: There is no such thing as Strong AI, there is only increasingly and arbitrarily sophisticated Weak AI.

    4 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 4

    • @patrickc OK, #1, what are 7 billion free, empowered, connected people with net-connected supercomputers going to build by end of century?
    • @patrickc #2, What are our odds of staving off catastrophic global disaster over that time period, whether global warming, bioterror, etc.
    • @patrickc #3, When does breakthrough life extension technology arrive, and what impact will it have on society and economics?
    • Incumbents 'can' incrementally innovate, but will they have same level of commitment?BMW & Tesla. Via @sharmavivek10 http://t.co/s9SQE9C0cP — (RT @SuB8u)

    4 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 5

    • @dkimerling They had a comprehensive comparative analysis of all consumer Internet business models and all countries.
    • @dkimerling It turned out that between 2001 and 2008 there had been a ton of development of new net business models mostly outside the US.
    • @dkimerling Most US-based investors just missed it, too preoccupied with the US and too bearish and dismissive after the dot com crash.
    • @dkimerling Whereas DST could say, "For X business model with Y user base in Z country, expected revenue and profit is $A" with confidence.
    • @dkimerling And hence DST was bidding on Facebook based on a model that their US-based competition did not have.
    • @dkimerling And generally their US-based competition refused to even conceive that it was possible that DST had an information advantage.
    • One app I'd like to see is Bitcoin contracts automatically adjudicated and settled by the network. — (RT @cdixon)

    4 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 6

    • @tomstandage Arguably the early path dependence determines a lot more of the long-term outcome than we think...
    • @tomstandage ...e.g. by tilting expectations towards functionality best served by an open or closed approach depending on how it starts.
    • @tomstandage One might guess that if "search" and "social" had started open, the requirements would be different than we now experience.
    • @tomstandage E.g. expectations of what networks or information retrieval systems were, were very different pre TCP/IP and HTML respectively.
    • @tomstandage Centralized approach may not be able to satisfy requirements derived from decentralized assumptions and vice versa.
    • @tomstandage So maybe how it starts determines how it ends.

    5 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 7

    • @NickHanauer You're talking past my point, which is as follows: I grew up in ground zero of the voter base you're talking about.
    • @NickHanauer Rural Wisconsin; main industries dairy farming and light industry, highly exposed to all of the trends you discuss.
    • @NickHanauer What people in that world experience is that every time they pick up a newspaper or watch TV...
    • @NickHanauer There's some expert or academic or intellectual, typically from a coast, explaining why we're voting the wrong way.
    • @NickHanauer And in almost every case it comes across as patronizing and condescending, one step away from being called stupid.
    • @NickHanauer And then the experts are amazed, each time, why the farmers and light industrial workers and housewives don't vote as expected.
    • @NickHanauer This was, for example, a major contributing factor to why Nixon got elected not once but twice.
    • @NickHanauer And why Reagan was so loved throughout much of the middle of the country, and even George W Bush.
    • @NickHanauer So my point is, the attitude of "those voters are dumb and are voting wrong" is both unhelpful and likely to backfire.
    • @NickHanauer For some reason, even regular people in the middle of the country think they can figure out what's in their own interest.
    • @NickHanauer And telling them they aren't and can't is indeed patronizing and condescending.

    6 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 8

    • @princebhojwani I think that's increasingly what will happen as all of the user-centric logic moves into phone apps.
    • @princebhojwani Phone has better navigation & maps, your media, your calendar (travel destinations), voice & text messaging, etc. etc.
    • @princebhojwani More and more what's running on the phone is eating what used to run in the car (or never ran in the car).
    • @princebhojwani So does your car work well with your phone? Not sure people will buy cars that don't in the future.

    6 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 9

    • @MaryTrigiani @robreich That whole thing is hysterical!
    • @MaryTrigiani @robreich When I was in college, dominant critique: Students all bunch of unmotivated Gen-X slackers, will never do anything.
    • @MaryTrigiani @robreich Now, exact opposite: Students all bunch of overmotivated achievers, too focused on performance and results.
    • @MaryTrigiani @robreich Also Deresiewicz gives away the plot in Generation Sell: He doesn't like/trust business, except his own book sales.
    • @MaryTrigiani @robreich Entertaining for sure. I wish him luck with his grift :-).

    1 week ago ago via Twitter


    • @Wolfson @joshk Two reasons why that isn't routinely what happens:
    • @Wolfson @joshk (1) Then we could only invest in a much smaller # of companies than we do now. The $ adds up across rounds!
    • @Wolfson @joshk (2) Risk of losing objectivity by being too emotionally close to the companies we're already in...
    • @Wolfson @joshk ...when you get close to these companies, it can be hard to tell "double down on winners" vs "good money after bad"...
    • @Wolfson @joshk ...and so having the external market validation of a new investor helps make sure we don't smoke our own exhaust too much.
    • @Wolfson @joshk Occasionally VCs will double down on their winners and keep them in-house (like Sequoia did with Whatsapp)...
    • @Wolfson @joshk ...but equally often that leads to the "good money after bad" effect and can cause a lot of damage to a portfolio.
    • @Wolfson @joshk None of this has anything to do with any specific company, of course. This is about portfolio management over time.
    • @Wolfson @joshk Had Airware not been able to raise new outside money from someone like KP, we certainly would have put more $ in :-).
    • @pmarca @amyjokim the literature of the opposition can be fertile ground for a thoughtful mind. — (RT @cmp_05)

    1 week ago ago via Twitter


    • @zeynep Again, if you don't want machines taking care of old people, then demographics will solve that problem for you.
    • @zeynep Demographics suggests the core problem 50 years from now will be the opposite of the current concern: not enough working age people.
    • @zeynep ...relative to retirees. Let the working age get too high, ability to pay for welfare of the elderly comes into serious question.
    • @zeynep Again here, productivity growth has to be the answer, smaller % of working age people will need to produce a lot more for everyone.
    • @zeynep And productivity growth comes from... automation, which comes from... technology.

    1 week ago ago via Twitter


    • @beowulf127 Yep, I don't understand why people think gov't officials can call markets any more than anyone else...
    • @beowulf127 ...and history shows they're just as bad at it as everyone else.
    • @beowulf127 ...and history shows they're just as bad at it as everyone else.
    • One week left! Annotate to win a signed chapter of @bhorowitz's book The Hard Thing About Hard Things! http://t.co/HFfg9mTgKs — (RT @newsgenius)

    1 week ago ago via Twitter


    • @ferenstein The three benefits of the inbound flow of people we are getting from illegal immigration despite the illegality:
    • @ferenstein 1. Economic: Lowering average working age & increasing birth rate, helping long-run US fiscal outlook tremendously.
    • @ferenstein 2. Human capital: Amazingly motivated and energetic people who work incredibly hard once they get here, add to talent pool.
    • @ferenstein 3. Cultural: Continue to expand the diversity, vibrancy, and energy of American culture, as immigrants always have.
    • An entrepreneur today: "I came to this country with nothing. I have sacrificed a lot. I am building something to last. I will win." — (RT @bznotes)

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @ferenstein I do think that both legal and illegal immigration are big net positives for the US. Particularly illegal immigration right now.
    • @ferenstein I do think that both legal and illegal immigration are big net positives for the US. Particularly illegal immigration right now.
    • @ferenstein (I don't mean "illegal immigration" itself is good, I mean it's net plus we are getting those people despite the illegality.)
    • Helsinki's ambitious plan to make car ownership pointless in 10 years http://t.co/EiwHXYD1Ip via @guardian — (RT @benjridgway)

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Common thing one hears in US is "Political system broken; Founding Fathers never intended politics to be dominated by moneyed interests."
    • 2/But in 1776, voting "restricted to property owners—most of whom are white male Protestants over the age of 21". http://t.co/x2AVaTBaEa
    • 3/In 1789, George Washington was elected President. "Only 6% of the population can vote." http://t.co/PpX4aLQcM8
    • 4/Not until 1856 was voting expanded even to all white men (eliminating property ownership requirement) -- http://t.co/PpX4aLQcM8
    • 5/1868, voting extended to former slaves (at least in theory), but still explicitly defined as male.
    • 6/Women could first vote starting in 1890 in Wyoming (!). In 1920, 19th Amendment passed, giving women right to vote throughout US.
    • 6/Throughout late 1800s and early 1900s, lots of battles for and against rights of other groups e.g. Native Americans & immigrants to vote.
    • 7/Of course, massive battles in the 1960's to extend practical right to vote to African-Americans; some battles continue to this day.
    • 8/Not until 1971 (year I was born) did voting age get lowered to 18, despite 18-21 year olds being conscripted & sent to war throughout.
    • 9/Founding Fathers arguably designed US system specifically to be dominated by moneyed interests, aka white male Protestant landowners.
    • 10/We have far broader-based voting and political participation today than ever before, due to hard work by many activists over 200 years.
    • 11/And we're still by no means perfect; lots of progress yet to be made. But we're leaps and bounds ahead of 50-100-150-200 years ago.
    • 12/And no, I'm not watching the World Cup finals :-).

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @automin Also Kevin Kelly's blog archives are really good.
    • @automin George Gilder for sure, "Telecosm" and his newsletters if you can get them.
    • @automin Also Kevin Kelly's blog archives are really good.
    • .@pmarca OK the Seventh and LAST shelf on Amazon Listmania http://t.co/7Njqw48O4h (with a little joke at the end) :-) — (RT @MasterMarquette)

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @aaronlarue I think in practice it requires truly disruptive innovation in the Christensen definition.
    • @aaronlarue I think in practice it requires truly disruptive innovation in the Christensen definition.
    • @aaronlarue It took Microsoft to end the IBM monopoly, and it took Google and Apple to end the Microsoft monopoly.
    • @aaronlarue "Innovator's Dilemma" still the best book on the topic, if you haven't read it.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @aaronlarue My personal view is that distinctions between needs and wants are almost entirely arbitrary.
    • @aaronlarue In a lot of ways, the story of human economic development is things starting as wants and becoming needs.
    • @aaronlarue So I doubt that's actually a useful framework to consider the other questions.
    • @aaronlarue On monopoly, I think Peter has an idealized view. All monopolies have the same slogan: "We don't care because we don't have to."
    • @aaronlarue You can absolutely count on a monopoly to prioritize retaining & strengthening the monopoly over everything else inc innovation.
    • @aaronlarue Legislation and regulation are not very useful for dealing with monopolies due to phenomenon of regulatory capture.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @DanielleMorrill And when they do cross over into tech and start violating their own valuation rules, historically it's been a topping sign.
    • @DanielleMorrill They tend to do terribly on those investments and withdraw from the market entirely in short order.
    • @DanielleMorrill So of course that's an interesting lens to look at the current dynamic of TPG et al doing so much tech growth equity.
    • @DanielleMorrill "This time is different" argument in 3 parts: death/delay of IPOs, success in tech are bigger now, & trad PE returns down.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @DanielleMorrill Traditional PE and growth equity firms can only invest on a basis of multiples of positive cash flow.
    • @DanielleMorrill Both because that's how they analyze everything and because they often put leverage on top of their equity.
    • @DanielleMorrill They cannot, and will not, impute intangible value that you can't see in the form of current positive cash flow.
    • @DanielleMorrill So they effectively cannot cross over into what you and I would consider "tech", where valuations exceed ~10x current CF.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @BenedictEvans I'm not sure I believe that innovation moves in the sense of an unchangeable force.
    • @BenedictEvans I think more often companies in a given layer just stop innovating, but could start again.
    • @BenedictEvans As example, virtually everyone in late 90's believed innovation in Internet search was over, had moved to other layers.
    • @BenedictEvans As another example, virtually everyone in late 90's believed innovation in enterprise systems software was over -> VMWare.
    • @BenedictEvans I guess I think mostly that innovation is a choice. Not easy, but still a choice.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @maheshsharma Sure, there are actually a few intersecting problems.
    • @maheshsharma First, often some significant % of early employees end up with too much stock, particularly the ones who don't work out.
    • @maheshsharma And then you have trouble both re-upping the ones you really want to keep as well as being generous enough with new people.
    • @maheshsharma Then morale issues because early people who aren't that good or working that hard make so much more money than later people.
    • @maheshsharma You can always solve with yet more stock, but then you're being punitive to your earliest investors who took the most risk.
    • @maheshsharma For the really successful companies, these can be tens of billions of dollars of mistakes.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • 0/Ten + one ways to grievously damage your high-growth tech startup, and Silicon Valley in the process:
    • 1/Only hire, and only train/motivate/incent your managers to hire -- don't optimize efficiency, don't do performance management, don't fire.
    • 2/Founders, sell too much of your own personal stock too quickly, alienating your employees and questioning your long-term commitment.
    • 3/Let private stock sales by employees get out of hand: create hit-and-run culture and take on burdens of being public before going public.
    • 4/Dilute the s*** out of cap table: be sloppy & undisciplined w/stock grants to early employees, plant morale land mine for later employees.
    • 5/Maximize absolute valuation of each growth round: make later rounds harder and harder to achieve, until you trigger disastrous down round.
    • 6/Let non-SV investors suck you into terrible structural terms on growth rounds: guarantee massive trauma if anything goes slightly wrong.
    • 7/Go public too soon, before you're a fortress, before you can withstand all the assaults: ending in stock price death spiral & train wreck.
    • 8/Pour huge money into overly glorious new headquarters, signaling to employees "we've made it, we're amazing", then repeat two years later.
    • 9/Confuse conference circuit & party scene with actual work. Encourage alcohol & drugs, party culture in company, value ballers over nerds.
    • 10/Refuse to take HR seriously: allow terrible internal manager & employee behavior to catalyze into catastrophic ethical & legal crisis.
    • 11/And the one that will actually kill you: Assume more cash is always available at higher & higher valuations, forever.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @tummler10 @csuwildcat @KevBeirne I mean it's a philosophical question about how you think about how to measure quality of life.
    • @tummler10 @csuwildcat @KevBeirne e.g. How would you feel if absolute quality of life doubled for everyone...
    • @tummler10 @csuwildcat @KevBeirne e.g. How would you feel if absolute quality of life doubled for everyone...
    • @tummler10 @csuwildcat @KevBeirne ...but if income inequality also doubled at the same time? Good or bad?

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @stevecheney Later! In college.
    • @stevecheney BASIC and assembly through age 18.
    • @stevecheney BASIC and assembly through age 18.
    • Convinced most upper/lower GI diagnostics will be done via spatially aware ingestables and wireless telemetry within 10 years. — (RT @pkedrosky)

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/One persistent canard from would-be SV critics is "Silicon Valley isn't building/funding the right things, aka solutions to big problems".
    • 2/There are six logical problems with the false choice of "make trivial apps for 20-something SF hipsters" vs "do things that matter".
    • 3/First, "make trivial apps" vs "do things that matter" are not actually in conflict-there's plenty of room and plenty of money to do both.
    • 4/Second, it's often hard to tell which is which up front. Almost all big world-changers were dismissed by critics as trivial at first.
    • 5/Third, observer bias: Only read consumer tech blogs, only go to consumer tech conferences, think SV only works on consumer tech.
    • 6/Founders of non-consumer-tech startups routinely find same pundits mounting criticism have little interest in hearing about other domains.
    • 7/This is exacerbated by SF-centric consumer tech party scene--other domains in SV don't have the same party culture, just nerds at work.
    • 8/New arrivals to SV get sucked into SF party scene, and never make it to the South Bay industrial parks where everything else is happening.
    • 9/Fourth, battling cynical critiques: Founders who articulate the big vision for changing the world get called arrogant and vainglorious.
    • 10/Both criticisms leveled with no cognitive dissonance: Founders either not pursuing big ideas, or out of control egomaniacs if they are.
    • 11/Fifth, subtext often that communication tech/apps in particular somehow aren't important or don't matter, vs energy, education, etc.
    • 12/I think this is 100% incorrect: Communication tech/apps including Internet are the foundation for everything else we'll do for 100 years.
    • 13/Why? Communication is the foundation of collaborative work, which is how all the important problems gets solved. People working together.
    • 14/Sixth: Anyone who thinks SV can be doing more/better/different, come join us and participate in building new things, products, companies!
    • 15/Jump in, the water's warm! SV draws talent from all over the world & all walks of life; nothing preventing any critic from contributing.
    • 16/As my old boss Jim Barksdale used to say, "We have plenty of uniforms your size." Many opportunities to contribute & make a difference!
    • 17/And, of course, tech startup ecosystem now expanding worldwide. Opportunities to contribute from anywhere abound, linked via Internet.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/"Halt And Catch Fire" takes flak from critics for being melodramatic--yet captures real emotional intensity of actual tech startups well.
    • 2/Joe, Cameron, Gordon, Bos all accurate archetypes. I know dozens of each. Must come together to do great things. Can't alone.
    • 3/Tonight's episode best since pilot -- without spoiling, key is both Cameron and Gordon are right. Real tension at heart of many startups.
    • 4/Again without spoiling, final question asked by Cameron's new program still at the heart of our industry 30 years later.
    • 5/Show also shows why founders often don't start 2nd company, or sometimes even talk to former partners after company is over. Too intense.
    • 6/Finally, show is dead on about overwhelming market power of IBM at that time. Seeds of collapse had already been planted but no one knew.

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Cleaned-up tweetstorm on "the reverse rules of new technology" -- expressed ironically! -- and labeled as such :-).
    • 2/One thing we know about new gadgets: They can be judged based on their first versions since that's what they'll look like forever. #irony
    • 3/Each new technology arrives into the world w/the perfect universal use case pre-identified. If it doesn't, it flops & dies forever. #irony
    • 4/Any new technology needs immediate widespread cultural acceptance. If it's just used by nerds early on, it'll never go mainstream. #irony
    • 5/New technology products must be immediately cash-flow profitable; otherwise you have clear evidence idea was stupid from the start. #irony
    • 6/Any new tech product that isn't immediately affordable for everyone will never decline in price & will just exacerbate inequality. #irony
    • 7/Any new tech must immediately provide immense utility to the world or shame on you for not "solving big problems". #irony HT @commagere

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • @dsquareddigest Yes, who it's coming from and when it was sent.
    • @dsquareddigest Technically the "Yo" part is irrelevant. It's a message that's 100% context.
    • @dsquareddigest Added benefits: One click send, much safer to use in car, no need to remember anything except context.
    • @dsquareddigest Also ideally suited for new generation smart watches coming to market soon (small screens, simple input).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @HeatherDJohn Oh, yes.
    • @HeatherDJohn Possible selection bias, though. Generally any entrepreneur who pitches a full partnership of a VC firm...
    • @HeatherDJohn ...has run a considerable gauntlet to get there -- female and male. So they all tend to be tough determined & pretty fearless.
    • The Man Making Silicon Valley Go Crazy for Hardware | Design | WIRED http://t.co/FxwfX9VckX "Mr. China" @liamcasey doing his thing. — (RT @RonP)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @Noahpinion Yet Democrats are holding high-skilled immigration hostage.
    • @Noahpinion Yet Democrats are holding high-skilled immigration hostage.
    • @Noahpinion Nobody on the side of principle in this one. All politics.
    • Is China getting ready for a bloody crackdown on Hong Kong protesters? http://t.co/2nNqdcY3w7 — (RT @Noahpinion)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • "I've never seen so many people before." Man looking on from Pacific Place as marchers still go strong at 8 #july1hk http://t.co/zT9Fu2zHbe — (RT @jchristychoi)
    • "I've never seen so many people before." Man looking on from Pacific Place as marchers still go strong at 8 #july1hk http://t.co/zT9Fu2zHbe — (RT @jchristychoi)
    • Tens of thousands of pro-democracy protesters marching in Hong Kong, angry w/ Beijing http://t.co/9jnkfh7ceS #july1hk http://t.co/qAX8BuvSqg — (RT @moneyries)
    • Streets in Wan Chai still crowded with protesters singing and marching #hk71 #july1hk http://t.co/3Qormm1ki6 — (RT @AgnesBun)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Gallup surveys on confidence in institutions are endlessly interesting: http://t.co/qHx0Ce6YCz
    • 2/High-trust US institutions (above or near 50%): Military, small business, police, churches.
    • 3/Low-trust US institutions: Medical system, Supreme Court, Presidency, public schools, banks.
    • 4/Almost-no-trust US institutions (<25%): Justice system, newspapers, organized labor, big business, Internet news, TV news, Congress.
    • 5/Conventional glass-half-empty argument is terrible erosion of trust & competency in key institutions, decline & fall of the United States.
    • 6/Alternate glass-half-full argument: Large centralized institutions *shouldn't* be highly trusted: monopolies/oligopolies let people down.
    • 7/Alternate arg cont'd: Lack of trust in institutions motivates construction of competitive alternatives better attuned to we the people.
    • 8/Alternate arg cont'd: Large centralized institutions were 20th century; flexible, responsive, accountable organizations for 21st century.
    • 9/I don't think the answers are at all straightforward. But I think this debate is going to inform a lot of next 30 years of politics.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @asaxena "VC returns" is a flawed concept. VC is not an asset class, it's a boutique industry. Small % of investors generate most profits.
    • @asaxena The question I pose is not about all startups. It's about the top startups that in the past would have IPO'd much quicker.
    • @asaxena We have a choice, those top startups can either IPO fast at low valuations like Microsoft, Oracle, and Amazon did...
    • @asaxena ...or they can IPO later at high valuations like Facebook did. Big difference for public market returns over time.
    • @asaxena The point people keep missing is that I'm arguing against my own personal self-interest on this.
    • @asaxena As a private investor with access to lots of private LP funding, I make more money if the winners stay private for much longer.
    • @asaxena But on the other hand, I think it would healthier for society if the gains from the winners were more broadly distributed.
    • @asaxena But to be clear, with my own self-interest in mind, I'm just fine the way things are. Happy to take all the gains on private side.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @abrams Whatever you think about them, they were both billion-$ revenue companies when they went out.
    • @abrams Whatever you think about them, they were both billion-$ revenue companies when they went out.
    • @abrams You can still take billion-$ revenue companies public, no question :-).
    • @pmarca @BenedictEvans thought you two would enjoy this analysis of homescreen apps http://t.co/beGckW1rmC — (RT @RichBTIG)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @BenedictEvans @cdixon A year ago Facebook was being accused of making you feel unhappy by showing you too many *happy* things...
    • @BenedictEvans @cdixon http://t.co/xQgQFIMsYv
    • @BenedictEvans @cdixon Faced with that question, what would you do? Show more sad things? Show more happy things? Or study the topic?
    • This honesty from @DanielleMorrill on fundraising is profound - must read for every investor and entrepreneur: https://t.co/Tz05E8u5Tt — (RT @stevecheney)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @lagoaThiago I was never at SGI -- although my partner @bhorowitz was.
    • @lagoaThiago @bhorowitz Amazing how much has changed since then -- but also how much hasn't.
    • @lagoaThiago @bhorowitz Amazing how much has changed since then -- but also how much hasn't.
    • @lagoaThiago @bhorowitz Including irony that Google is now in old SGI buildings -- both employing many of industry's best engineers!

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @EpicureanDeal That's my point. "White and Asian" = a large % of the United Nations. The claim is specious.
    • @EpicureanDeal If there was active discrimination or "mirrortocracy" going on, it would be all white.
    • @EpicureanDeal The reality is exactly the opposite. All of these companies are desperate for talent. They'll take anyone who can contribute.
    • @EpicureanDeal We wish there were purple, green, and orange people to hire.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • Helpful hint: Whenever you watch TV, read a book, open a newspaper, or talk to another person, someone's manipulating your emotions!
    • Helpful hint: Whenever you watch TV, read a book, open a newspaper, or talk to another person, someone's manipulating your emotions!
    • @pmarca And there are excellent odds they're measuring the results and tuning their manipulation accordingly...
    • Net Neutrality dilemma: we want carriers to be utilities *and* expect massive innovation in broadband #TANSTAAFL http://t.co/yOjbd56vYH — (RT @fmbutt)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • Pretty clear data across presentations at #premoney that economic value is being captured in private markets. All the action is private. — (RT @semil)
    • Awesome #premoney presentation on shifts in capital markets by @skupor. IMO he's a16z's secret weapon. — (RT @semil)
    • Scott Kupor of Andreessen Horowitz says "This is not a bubble." #premoney http://t.co/36UhN4ymkH — (RT @Mattermark)
    • Scott Kupor of Andreessen Horowitz says "This is not a bubble." #premoney http://t.co/36UhN4ymkH — (RT @Mattermark)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/New study on interplay between diversity and success in VC investing in startups -- really interesting -- http://t.co/Tj4WBKK9YQ
    • 2/"The more [ethnic and educational] affinity there is between two VCs investing in a firm, the less likely the firm will succeed." !!
    • 3/"VCs have strong tendency to team w/other VCs whose ethnic & educational backgrounds are similar... turns out to be bad for business."
    • 4/"Two VCs from same undergraduate school 34.4 percent more likely to collaborate...and increased by 39.2 percent if same ethnicity."
    • 5/"Odds of success of invested company down 17% if two VCs worked at same company; -19% same undergrad school; -20% same ethnicity."
    • 6/"The lack of success among similar investors seemed to lie in the decisions that *followed* the investment...due to 'groupthink'."
    • 7/Side note: Last names of the three researchers who wrote the paper -- Gompers, Xuan and Mukharlyamov :-).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @fmanjoo @cdixon I don't think that's the only factor, but I bet it contributed.
    • @fmanjoo @cdixon Recall that patent trolling only became an institutional investment asset class not that long ago.
    • @fmanjoo @cdixon Lawsuits are their revenue model, so I bet this correlates for their need to give their investors tangible returns.
    • Amazing color (yes, color!) photos from World War I from @TIME: http://t.co/wyGHEbFfg9

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @interfluidity My best guess: Is it truly in service of making the best product?
    • @interfluidity My partners and I think Christensen theory on disruption & interplay of horizontal & vertical structures needs a new part...
    • @interfluidity His analysis of how products go from integrated to horizontally disaggregated makes total sense, however...
    • @interfluidity At some point the horizontally disaggregated industry (always? sometimes?) loses the plot & makes crappy final products.
    • @interfluidity That's when a rebundled superior product can win, against all expert predictions. Customers do care & will change.
    • @interfluidity Apple is the ultimate case study. EVERY outside observer said they had to unbundle when Steve decided to rebundle.
    • @interfluidity How much was his genius vs how much was PC industry products had unacceptably degraded over its 20 year run? Who can tell?

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Late night tweetstorm addendum to earlier series on unbundling (https://t.co/ecgBveoiMj) and rebundling (https://t.co/0fw9alDKh3)...
    • 2/Younger followers asked me to expand on DEC/Sun/Microsoft unbundling: older history, therefore useful to study as precedent for our time.
    • 3/Once upon a time (1950s-1960s), businesses mostly bought computers from IBM, & IBM also bundled in all the software & services you'd need.
    • 4/IBM bundled offerings were extremely expensive, while demand for computers spread to departments & smaller businesses who had less $.
    • 5/So DEC unbundled the computer itself from the total bundle & sold it for less $ to customers who could then write their own software.
    • 6/But a DEC computer itself was a bundle of proprietary components: VAX hardware, VMS operating system, RDB database, etc.
    • 7/In the 80's, Sun came along & sold a similar power computer to DEC's for 1/4 the cost w/unbundled components: Unix OS + Motorola chips.
    • 8/DEC responded by going upmarket & becoming more like IBM; Sun & other Unix workstation vendors chewed through their market + grew it more.
    • 9/Critical point: At point when DEC started to tip over, its integrated offering was as close to perfect as our industry will ever see.
    • 10/Ask people who were working then (like me) and they'll tell you to this day that they miss VAX/VMS & how productive they could be on it.
    • 11/Meanwhile Microsoft & Intel came along and fully implemented the unbundled low-cost computer, first PCs and then Windows-based servers.
    • 12/Sun responded to Microsoft/Intel by rebundling: Rebuilding itself in DEC's image with Sparc chip, Solaris OS -- proprietary HW+SW stack.
    • 13/Again, Sun got close to perfection as an integrated system when unbundled Microsoft+Intel & Linux+Intel went broad & forced sale of co.
    • 14/Picking up thread with Microsoft: Microsoft has spent last 15 years rebundling, rebuilding itself in DEC's image much like Sun. Now + HW!
    • 15/Once again, bundled Microsoft stack very close to perfect just as it comes under attack from next unbundling wave: mobile + cloud.
    • 16/Fascinating twist: Under new leadership, Microsoft 2014 now committed to unbundling -- full app + cloud support for iOS, Android, Linux!
    • 17/Microsoft taking new unbundling strategy offensively vs new titans who are bundling as fast as possible! Apple, Google, Amazon, Oracle.
    • 18/The point? I don't know much about what our industry will look like in 50 years, but I'm quite confident these same dynamics will apply.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/The flip side of unbundling: Later on, the unbundlers tend to try to rebundle in the image of whatever they unbundled.
    • 2/So Yahoo adds an ISP (https://t.co/JrlrVoY9Vo), and Google adds email/IM/sports-scores/stock-quotes.
    • 3/Twitter changes its user profile page to look more like Facebook :-).
    • 4/Sun unbundled DEC with commodity components, then re-bundled into a proprietary computing stack just like DEC w/Solaris, Sparc, etc.
    • 5/Microsoft likewise unbundled DEC minicomputers w/PC OS + tools, then rebundled into DEC-like integrated stack now including hardware (!).
    • 6/Paraphrasing Harvey Dent: "You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the company you first competed with."
    • 7/And then sometimes the rebundlers realize what they're doing and try to reverse course. E.g. Microsoft building apps for iOS & Android.
    • 8/And thus the cycle of life repeats with yet more unbundling :-).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/A story of unbundling in the tech industry: 20 years of consumer Internet evolution -- http://t.co/qUCWjc4wkF
    • 2/One upon a time there was AOL, which was a completely integrated Internet access/information/communication service.
    • 3/Then Yahoo came along and unbundled the information/communication parts like email/IM/sports-scores/stock-quotes from the access service.
    • 4/One of the things you could do on Yahoo was search, then Google came along and unbundled that.
    • 5/You can search for anything on Google, including people; Facebook came along with a much better way to just search for people.
    • 6/Three things you can do on Facebook are messaging, photo sharing, and status updates; therefore Whatsapp, Instagram, and Twitter.
    • 7/And yes, Yo unbundles the creation & existence of a message from the contents of a message, unbundling Whatsapp and Twitter :-).
    • 8/Ev Williams (@ev) is the modern genius of this concept--playing out in our industry continuously since the 1950's. http://t.co/p6DzO6tGbL
    • 9/The part people often miss is that you can get extremely powerful second/third order effects at each step with his pattern.
    • 10/The entrepreneurs generally have a pretty good sense of this when they're doing it, but it doesn't become clear to others until later.
    • 11/This is a pattern what we love to fund: unbundle X from Y, but then use the liberation of X as leverage to do amazing new things with X.
    • 12/And the howls of press and analyst outrage at the apparent stupidity of each unbundling are very helpful for keeping valuations down :-).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @paulbaumgart Also in that world there's no need for fractional private ownership. Hedge funds and pension funds can own everything...
    • @paulbaumgart ...relieving individuals of all carrying costs. Consumer lifestyle all opex no capex.
    • @paulbaumgart With prospect for amazing scale economics on maintenance and physical resource allocation.
    • Smart Cities should be social cities, where technology enables social interaction, not filters it. Blog here http://t.co/IJY4QY1SBH — (RT @kieronkirkland)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/1950's + 1960's + 1970's + 1980's + early 1990's view of computer technology = "Nerds!"
    • 2/Late 1990's view of computer technology = "Everyone will get rich!"
    • 3/2001's view of computer technology = "The nerds screwed us!"
    • 4/2003's view of computer technology = "We knew those nerds were wrong all along!"
    • 5/2009's view of computer technology = "Those nerds are completely out of ideas!"
    • 6/2013's view of computer technology = "Those nerds and all their crazy ideas are going to destroy all the jobs!"
    • 7/And now = "Those nerds are completely out of ideas again, and now they're having sex too!" http://t.co/Du7pMU6seU http://t.co/GF5L2qXwj3
    • 8/Stay tuned for more updates from our favorite show, "As The Nerds Turn" :-).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Equally big news of the day: our co @Quirky spinning out "Internet of things" platform Wink as standalone company! http://t.co/knfAGTKgPi
    • 2/@Quirky with its partners including GE and Home Depot is reinventing American manufacturing of consumer products. http://t.co/knfAGTKgPi
    • 3/Now Wink will provide a standard software layer across all of Quirky's products plus many others including GE, Honeywell, and Philips.
    • 4/Quirky partner Home Depot "now sells 600 smart-home products, six times as many as it did two years ago." The revolution is happening now.
    • 5/Important to note this isn't just about toys for rich people; it's about energy conservation, water conservation, security, and safety.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Today we're thrilled to be able to talk about newest investment--Tanium. We're investing $90M; first VC investment since co founded 2007.
    • 2/Collectively partners at @a16z have maybe 200 years experience in systems management; Tanium is a breakthrough like we've never seen.
    • 3/Tanium --> people responsible for large networks of computers & software, what Google --> people on the Internet. Don't say that lightly.
    • 4/Company's operating under radar, but its customers could not be more enthusiastic. Product must be seen to be believed. It's amazing.
    • 5/Tanium is real-time query *and* control--100s of Ks of computers & virtual machines--with natural language queries. http://t.co/q4uYZl4qaX
    • 6/We are thrilled to be working with genius founders David & Orion Hindawi and their colleagues. Masters of the art & science of computing.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/We are very proud of portfolio company @udacity for going straight after opening up higher ed to far more people: http://t.co/QiPJoy5JTx
    • 2/"$200 a month, teach anyone basic programming skills for entry-level position at AT&T as a data analyst, iOS applications designer, etc."
    • 3/"Harnessing the web to provide effective schooling to the many young Americans for whom college has become a distant, unaffordable dream."
    • 4/"'We are trying to widen the pipeline,' said AT&T's Charlene Lake. 'This is designed by business for specific skills needed in business.'"
    • 5/"Education still offers children from disadvantaged families their best chance at climbing the ladder of success."
    • 6/"One reason for enormous payoff from college degree (2x payoff vs 1979) is that too few young Americans ever earn one."
    • 7/"Peter Lubbers, who runs MOOC developer training for Google says, 'We want all the techniques we know about to get out to the market.'"
    • 8/"The 'NanoDegree' offers a set of skills that can be clearly applied to a job--a chunk of knowledge & immediate motivation to acquire it."
    • 9/"Could offer a plausible path to young men/women who may not have time, money or skill to make it through 4-year or even 2-year degree."
    • 10/"US students in bottom quarter of income distribution: college graduation rates only 9%, from 5% 20 years ago." Not *nearly* high enough.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter

    • 1/We are very proud of portfolio company @udacity for going straight after opening up higher ed to far more people: http://t.co/QiPJoy5JTx
    • 2/"$200 a month, teach anyone basic programming skills for entry-level position at AT&T as a data analyst, iOS applications designer, etc."
    • 3/"Harnessing the web to provide effective schooling to the many young Americans for whom college has become a distant, unaffordable dream."
    • 4/"'We are trying to widen the pipeline,' said AT&T's Charlene Lake. 'This is designed by business for specific skills needed in business.'"
    • 5/"Education still offers children from disadvantaged families their best chance at climbing the ladder of success."
    • 6/"One reason for enormous payoff from college degree (2x payoff vs 1979) is that too few young Americans ever earn one."
    • 7/"Peter Lubbers, who runs MOOC developer training for Google says, 'We want all the techniques we know about to get out to the market.'"
    • 8/"The 'NanoDegree' offers a set of skills that can be clearly applied to a job--a chunk of knowledge & immediate motivation to acquire it."

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin Which is one reason so many ideas developed in the megacorp research arms never made it into products, then and now.
    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin And they usually had an odd relationship with the mothership, which wanted as little change as possible to preserve monopoly.
    • @samgustin Which is one reason so many ideas developed in the megacorp research arms never made it into products, then and now.
    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin ...and hyper-profitable monopolies are not normally the kind of thing that people get nostalgic about.
    • @samgustin And they usually had an odd relationship with the mothership, which wanted as little change as possible to preserve monopoly.
    • @samgustin Which is one reason so many ideas developed in the megacorp research arms never made it into products, then and now.
    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin However, it's surprising people get nostalgic about them, in that they only existed within hyper-profitable monopolies.
    • @samgustin ...and hyper-profitable monopolies are not normally the kind of thing that people get nostalgic about.
    • @samgustin And they usually had an odd relationship with the mothership, which wanted as little change as possible to preserve monopoly.
    • @samgustin Which is one reason so many ideas developed in the megacorp research arms never made it into products, then and now.
    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @samgustin I'm all in favor of more research, so only good things to say about them historically and now.
    • @samgustin However, it's surprising people get nostalgic about them, in that they only existed within hyper-profitable monopolies.
    • @samgustin ...and hyper-profitable monopolies are not normally the kind of thing that people get nostalgic about.
    • @samgustin And they usually had an odd relationship with the mothership, which wanted as little change as possible to preserve monopoly.
    • @samgustin Which is one reason so many ideas developed in the megacorp research arms never made it into products, then and now.
    • @samgustin In the meantime, both university research and venture-capital-backed startups have expanded enormously, for the better.
    • @samgustin In total, a lot more research & development is happening now vs 40 years ago, and a lot of it coming to market much faster.
    • @samgustin So I don't quite get what people think we're missing that we should try to recover. More hyper-profitable monopolies?
    • @samgustin Me, I'd rather see a dramatic expansion in federal R&D funding via NSF and NIH, channelled into research universities.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/The thing I find most interesting about Marx is how much he hated the poor and dispossessed: http://t.co/A3Y9U4DsEB
    • 2/Lumpenproletariat: "Layer of working class lost to useful production, of no use to the struggle, an impediment to the classless society."
    • 3/"Translated as slum workers or the mob...class of outcast, degenerated and submerged elements within population of industrial centers."
    • 4/"Beggars, prostitutes, gangsters, racketeers, swindlers, petty criminals, tramps, chronic unemployed or unemployables..."
    • 5/"Declassed, degraded or degenerated elements...innumerable young people also, who cannot find an opportunity to [become] producers."

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/A personal meditation on how we learn, and how how we learn is changing radically for the better due to new technology...
    • 2/1989: I go to college & want to learn about how "real" computers work--VMS & Unix--foundation of all today's phones/tablets/PCs/servers.
    • 3/Only way: Get a job at a computer lab that owned such a computer; get access to the literal wall of paper manuals-- http://t.co/sGgCIV3jMn
    • 4/Read those cover to cover; then what? Scientific/technical journals. Only with access to research university library. Until...
    • 5/1990: Co-op job at IBM; discovered mainframe (!) search engine of science/tech journals; in 3 days, get printed copies via office mail!
    • 6/Posed major dilemma: How many papers could the intern request before Big Blue would fire his ***? Tested it into the hundreds.
    • 7/All other relevant info was on the Internet--IETF RFC's, free software code--but who had access to the Internet in 1990? Not many.
    • 8/25 years later: Every smartphone is equiv of million-$ Unix supercomputer from that time, plus *all* that info is freely available online.
    • 9/Science/tech journals still not completely free, but even those walls falling fast now due to Google Scholar/PDF searches/policy reform.
    • 10/Re journals: Aaron Swartz doc is out; powerful memory of freedom of information hero & warrior for progress. http://t.co/Vh9G9FuBeZ
    • 11/Why does this matter? Info is foundation of progress; info about computers is basis of key tool for progress as software eats world.
    • 12/Means of production being put in hands of the masses for first time in human history. I'm broken record on this, but: profound change.
    • @pmarca one example of this is how mobile devices lead to new p2p networks which lead to new employment channels in a new labor market. — (RT @semil)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/I am super-proud of my friends at Google and their new push to help get more girls into coding: "The things you love are #MadewithCode"!
    • 2/From @SusanWojcicki: "Fewer than one percent of high school girls express interest in majoring in computer science....hits home for me."
    • 3/"Along with several partners, Google is launching Made with Code, an initiative to inspire girls to code." http://t.co/ewOIysOzW0
    • 4/Including "commitment of $50 million to support programs that can help get more females into computer science." !! http://t.co/ewOIysOzW0
    • 5/"Nowadays, coding isn’t just a skill useful for working at a tech company; engineering isn’t just for engineers..."
    • 6/"No matter what a girl dreams of doing, learning how to code will help her get there. Their future — our future — is made with code."
    • @pmarca love this @FastCompany story of bronx hs of science teen who learned she loves to code & started XX Hackers! http://t.co/ksTMeNJuoY — (RT @amy_pfister)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/One of the special things about our industry is how intellectually generous many of the leading participants are (no, I don't mean me :-).
    • 2/When I arrived in Silicon Valley in Jan 1994, I sought out all of the written material I could on startups & venture capital.
    • 3/I found exactly two books. An excellent but dry financial analysis of startup returns, and an excellent but dated book by Gordon Bell.
    • 4/So then I looked for magazines, and found exactly one: Red Herring. Which for several years was the best magazine about startups.
    • 5/But, in 1994, Red Herring was ~8 (?) memographed pages, cost $12 (?), published every 2 months (?), & available at only a few newsstands.
    • 6/That was it. I knew there was more material at Stanford & Harvard business schools but I couldn't get to it. There was nothing else.
    • 7/Today, 20 years later, the difference is *profound*. Many of the leading theorists & practitioners share *huge* amounts of info for free.
    • 8/That's a big difference in SV, but what I hear every day from people all over the world=what a big difference it's making everywhere else.
    • 9/A 14-year-old kid in Indonesia w/smartphone has access to 10,000x more info on tech & startups today than I did in Palo Alto 20 years ago.
    • 10/And the cycle is closing: there is startlingly profound new thinking happening all over the world & coming right back to Silicon Valley.
    • 11/In our industry, it's hard to underestimate the consequences of a positive feedback loop -- and this is a positive feedback loop.
    • 12/Assumption *must* be: Tech entrepreneurship all over the world is going to expand a thousand fold in the next 20 years. How could it not?
    • .@pmarca In fact, the 95 Theses that Martin Luther nailed to the door in Wittenberg Germany was basically the first #tweetstorm :) — (RT @KyleTibbitts)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 9/Excellent followup reading: Jeremy Wagstaff on missed calls, http://t.co/ZSZlJZiGIr @loosewire
    • 1/Lots of Mirth over "Yo" today (http://t.co/vYHSgl9OOh) but actually there's a fascinating aspect lots of people are missing...
    • 2/Yo is an instance of "one-bit communication" -- a message with no content other than the fact that it exists. Yes or no. Yo or no yo.
    • 3/Other instances of one-bit communication: Police siren, flashing stop light, "Open" sign, light turned on, taxicab roof indicator lit.
    • 4/But the most interesting instance of one-bit communication is the global "missed call" phenomenon: http://t.co/EVVISRA40Q
    • 5/Missed call on mobile phone is used as one-bit comm: "Used in South Asia/Philippines/Africa to communicate pre-agreed messages for free."
    • 6/Aided by fact that missed calls cost nothing to send/receive. "In Bangladesh, missed calls are 70% of mobile traffic at any given time."
    • 7/So the hilarity around Yo includes two problematic biases: Bias that one-bit comm isn't useful, and bias that all markets are like the US.
    • 8/I'm not saying Yo will be the next $100B social media powerhouse. But instant dismissal makes little sense; let's learn & keep minds open.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @techmilind Of course the funniest outcome here will be if it turns out to be the next $10B social media property.
    • 1/Lots of Mirth over "Yo" today (http://t.co/vYHSgl9OOh) but actually there's a fascinating aspect lots of people are missing...
    • 2/Yo is an instance of "one-bit communication" -- a message with no content other than the fact that it exists. Yes or no. Yo or no yo.
    • 3/Other instances of one-bit communication: Police siren, flashing stop light, "Open" sign, light turned on, taxicab roof indicator lit.
    • 4/But the most interesting instance of one-bit communication is the global "missed call" phenomenon: http://t.co/EVVISRA40Q
    • 5/Missed call on mobile phone is used as one-bit comm: "Used in South Asia/Philippines/Africa to communicate pre-agreed messages for free."
    • 6/Aided by fact that missed calls cost nothing to send/receive. "In Bangladesh, missed calls are 70% of mobile traffic at any given time."
    • 7/So the hilarity around Yo includes two problematic biases: Bias that one-bit comm isn't useful, and bias that all markets are like the US.
    • 8/I'm not saying Yo will be the next $100B social media powerhouse. But instant dismissal makes little sense; let's learn & keep minds open.
    • 9/Excellent followup reading: Jeremy Wagstaff on missed calls, http://t.co/ZSZlJZiGIr @loosewire

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @techmilind I think I'd be more worried if they investors were Sequoia, Accel, Greylock, Benchmark, and Founders Fund :-).
    • @techmilind Of course the funniest outcome here will be if it turns out to be the next $10B social media property.
    • 1/Lots of Mirth over "Yo" today (http://t.co/vYHSgl9OOh) but actually there's a fascinating aspect lots of people are missing...
    • 2/Yo is an instance of "one-bit communication" -- a message with no content other than the fact that it exists. Yes or no. Yo or no yo.
    • 3/Other instances of one-bit communication: Police siren, flashing stop light, "Open" sign, light turned on, taxicab roof indicator lit.
    • 4/But the most interesting instance of one-bit communication is the global "missed call" phenomenon: http://t.co/EVVISRA40Q
    • 5/Missed call on mobile phone is used as one-bit comm: "Used in South Asia/Philippines/Africa to communicate pre-agreed messages for free."
    • 6/Aided by fact that missed calls cost nothing to send/receive. "In Bangladesh, missed calls are 70% of mobile traffic at any given time."
    • 7/So the hilarity around Yo includes two problematic biases: Bias that one-bit comm isn't useful, and bias that all markets are like the US.
    • 8/I'm not saying Yo will be the next $100B social media powerhouse. But instant dismissal makes little sense; let's learn & keep minds open.
    • 9/Excellent followup reading: Jeremy Wagstaff on missed calls, http://t.co/ZSZlJZiGIr @loosewire

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Proposed: Unless you're with your kids, what's on screen in your hand = likely more interesting & important than what's around you.
    • 2/Sounds extreme, yet how could it not be true most of the time? Screen in your hand contains the entire world vs immediate locality.
    • 3/This is personal for me: I grew up in very small rural town; Kids in rural towns today grow up way more connected to the world than I did.
    • 4/People around you not interested in same things? No problem, screen in your hand connects you to like-minded people everywhere.
    • 5/People around you can't teach you the things you want to know? No problem, screen in your hand gives you all the information you want.
    • 6/The place where you live doesn't have economic opportunity for you? Screen in your hand gives you access to global opportunities, markets.
    • 7/Bastiat's "seed and unseen": What we see are people staring at their phones. What we don't see are their interactions with the world.
    • 8/And then it comes back around: Our online virtual world enhances and improves our local physical world & our friends and family in it.
    • 9/Recommend reading David Gerlenter's "Mirror Worlds", on how our virtual & physical worlds improve one another: http://t.co/MXph8TMhvo

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Speaking of disruption: Tech people like me can sometimes come across as presumptuous/arrogant re disruption of other peoples' industries.
    • 1a/It is possible this is an understatement. I am sure that some of my Twitter friends will expand on this for me :-).
    • 2/From this side of the aisle, though, it's less smugness, more the result of hard experience and learning from our own lives and careers.
    • 3/In tech, our *own* businesses are disrupted by technology change and new competitive entrants at whiplash-inducing rates.
    • 4/It's shocking how quickly you can go from the hot disruptive upstart to the stodgy disrupted incumbent in tech--frequently within 5 years.
    • 5/I've probably been on the receiving end of disruption 30 times in the last 20 years--almost as many times as I've been on the giving end.
    • 6/Now, on the one hand, you might say, "How can people live like that?" ... what's wrong with a little stability?
    • 7/But, what we see is: Frequent disruption is the handmaiden of rapid progress--and it's a blast to create and work amid rapid progress.
    • 8/It's not just rapid progress of tech. It's also rapid grown of companies, and even better, rapid development of *people* & their talents.
    • 9/It's hard to stay in tech for any period of time and not get good at rapid adaptation, skill acquisition... and new product creation.
    • 10/As software eats the world: Same disruption dynamics always present in tech now applying to many more industries, fields, professions.
    • 11/Rather than superiority/contempt, what a lot of us feel is deep sympathy/understanding-- even if that's not always how it comes across!
    • 12/And now we all have the opportunity to learn together--to make many parts of industry/life more innovative/dynamic, better for everyone.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter

    • 1/Fascinating question around Christensen's theory of disruption: "OK, smart guy, why haven't Apple iPhone/iPad been disrupted by Android?"
    • 2/I count five possible answers; there may be more...
    • 3/A. Theory of disruption is hucksterish management consultant fraud. (This one I do not agree with.)
    • 4/B. Right now Apple *is* the disruptor--iPhones/iPads vs Windows PCs. Many surprised by rapid rise of direct substitution, including me.
    • 5/C. Apple *is* getting disrupted right now: Android phones outselling iPhones somewhere between 5:1 and 10:1 worldwide right now.
    • 6/D: Related to C, Apple isn't getting disrupted *yet*, but will be soon. This is what many in Silicon Valley believe, but Apple does not.
    • 7/E: The most interesting one: Current theory of disruption is incomplete; does not have a broad enough concept of end-user quality.
    • 8/In this line of argument, disruption theory was born in Microsoft/Intel era, when everyone expected computers to have, um, certain issues.
    • 9/Apple brilliantly redefined conception what was possible from end-user quality and integration standpoint, against prevailing assumptions.
    • 10/We have attempted to generalize *this* concept into "full stack" thinking, which many of today's best startups are also pursuing.
    • 11/It's possible disruption theory needs to be evolved to accommodate these newer patterns and learnings...
    • 12/But it's also possible all such "full stack" patterns are just integrated approaches that themselves will be disrupted in the future.
    • 13/Time will tell. In Silicon Valley, these topics are central and being debated both in actions and words by ultra-smart people every day.
    • 14/References: http://t.co/HJI1nL97C9 http://t.co/Gxz600QDIh + Discussions w/@cdixon @stevesi @balajis @bhorowitz & others.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel Disruption theory is quite good re the past, often useful re the future, & frequently valuable re the present.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel In what I like to call "the real world", correctly understanding the present is actually quite helpful.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel Many of the most useful theories of human behavior are better re the present than the future. Not surprising.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel People are complicated, situations are complex. But ways to understand are valuable even when not perfect.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel There's explaining the past, there's predicting the future, but there's also understanding the present.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel Disruption theory is quite good re the past, often useful re the future, & frequently valuable re the present.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel In what I like to call "the real world", correctly understanding the present is actually quite helpful.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel Many of the most useful theories of human behavior are better re the present than the future. Not surprising.
    • @fmanjoo @mmasnick @vpostrel People are complicated, situations are complex. But ways to understand are valuable even when not perfect.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @vpostrel The obvious question is what other substantive/accurate/useful theories does she feel qualified to attack the same way.
    • @vpostrel Put another way: Christensen's disruption theory is the opposite of handwaving; her essay is the definition of handwaving.
    • @vpostrel Substance matters. Real things in the real world are not contemptuously dismissible with a cultural studies critique.
    • @vpostrel (I am fully aware that you know all this!)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @vpostrel She didn't have to do that; she chose to do that.
    • @vpostrel The obvious question is what other substantive/accurate/useful theories does she feel qualified to attack the same way.
    • @vpostrel Put another way: Christensen's disruption theory is the opposite of handwaving; her essay is the definition of handwaving.
    • @vpostrel Substance matters. Real things in the real world are not contemptuously dismissible with a cultural studies critique.
    • @vpostrel (I am fully aware that you know all this!)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @vpostrel I am deliberately heightening the contradictions to make the larger point.
    • @vpostrel She picked a substantive/accurate/useful business/tech theory & decided to dismiss it as a pointless cultural artifact.
    • @vpostrel She didn't have to do that; she chose to do that.
    • @vpostrel The obvious question is what other substantive/accurate/useful theories does she feel qualified to attack the same way.
    • @vpostrel Put another way: Christensen's disruption theory is the opposite of handwaving; her essay is the definition of handwaving.
    • @vpostrel Substance matters. Real things in the real world are not contemptuously dismissible with a cultural studies critique.
    • @vpostrel (I am fully aware that you know all this!)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @jenny8lee I think judging from these emails, this particular company actually had pretty good interaction with VCs it pitched.
    • @jenny8lee A lot of companies would tell you that they never got replies that courteous or that articulate.
    • @jenny8lee The feedback that founders often never get that can be most important is "we don't think you're good enough to pull it off".
    • @jenny8lee A big undercovered component to this whole process is, what does it mean to be qualified to be a tech founder & raise VC?
    • @jenny8lee I.e. what did the founders do for the 10 years prior to trying to raise VC for their startup?
    • Orszag: It's time for some optimism about health care spending http://t.co/c1lLUvhkvd — (RT @voxdotcom)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • How many heart-wrenching developing-world charity initiatives are scams that make things even worse, like this? http://t.co/dB7AzMdx46
    • Specifically, how many nonprofit initiatives promoted and sponsored by high-profile Western charity umbrella organizations are of this type?
    • Finally, at what point do we upgrade our assessments of Dambisa Moyo and James Shikwati? http://t.co/wm9fCDoQdm http://t.co/RGzLJ9punf
    • [new post] Sunday Conversation #10 with @Rabois, on Bitcoin, Stripe, valuations, Homerun, and being a VC-founder: http://t.co/t5jxkRgxFE — (RT @semil)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @DanielleMorrill What I mean: companies that hit product/market fit right away don't need to raise very much initial capital.
    • @DanielleMorrill This is the opposite of "Not raising very much initial capital makes it more likely you'll be super-successful."
    • @DanielleMorrill If you take the "small amounts of initial capital cause success" argument seriously, then...
    • @DanielleMorrill ...the rational thing to do would be to shut down any startup that burns through initial ~$3M of capital without success.
    • @DanielleMorrill But obviously that doesn't make sense -- sometimes things just take longer and/or are more expensive than others.
    • @DanielleMorrill Which exposes flaw in the theory. The theory doesn't really hold and people don't really believe it, but they still say it.
    • @DanielleMorrill (Because people dearly want to believe there are specific causes of success that can be applied in any situation :-).

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/A few thoughts on timing and staging of capital into modern tech startups -- start with fact that 2003-20011 seed rounds were ~$500K-1M.
    • 2/As @DanielleMorrill points out, now you see more startups raising $2-3-4M or even more in "seed" financing, often in multiple tranches.
    • 3/So then think about the startup that's raised $3-4M or even $5-6M in "seed" funding that goes to raise a "Series A" from VC firms.
    • 4/VC looks back across the table: "You're not raising a Series A, you're raising a Series B--you already raised your Series A [in seed $]".
    • 5/This can take the startup by surprise, because it really affects how VCs think about progress and milestones, key to raising new round.
    • 6/VCs assume Series A is to build product + get first beta customers; Series B is to build the business around the product + get to revenue.
    • 7/So a startup that raised as much $ as a Series A in seed funds, but hasn't achieved actual Series A milestones, can be in real trouble.
    • 8/VC says: "You said you're raising A but you're actually raising B, and you haven't accomplished enough to merit a B. Thank you, but pass."
    • 9/So the risk of calling $3-4-5-6M "seed" raises "seed" is that founder can fool himself/herself heading into the first real VC raise.
    • 10/The rise of the "New Series A" by firms like A Capital is intended to address this issue head on. http://t.co/85ry6XtiiE
    • 11/In effect, a $3-5M seed round or a $3-5M "New Series A" is a recreation of the original conception of an A round from historical VC.
    • 12/Takeaway for founders? Think very hard about timing and staging of capital vs progress and milestones; matters a lot for raising A/B/C.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/"The VA scheduling system scheduled its first appointment in April of 1985. It has not changed in any appreciable manner since that date."
    • 2/Said Philip Matkovsky, assistant deputy under-secretary of the VA. http://t.co/558HmaTfq7
    • 3/So, watch "Halt and Catch Fire", while thinking to yourself, current VA scheduling system was being built at the same time.
    • 4/And then think about the odds of any private company still being in business with a core system running unchanged for 30 years.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/On AI & the Turing Test: Recently the Internet got all fired up--did a software bot pass/not pass the Turing Test: http://t.co/X4MRbdhjfk
    • 2/Turing Test, proposed by uber-genius Alan Turing in 1950, is: Can a software bot convince a human it's also human, via text chat?
    • 3/My view is that Turing Test has always been malformed, humans are too easy to trick, passing test says almost nothing about software.
    • 4/"But Marc, Alan Turing was the genius of all time, and you're just some dude on Twitter. What the hell, man?" That's a good point!
    • 5/Turing said something else that I think is far more relevant, which he announced loudly in the executive cafeteria at Bell Labs in 1942:
    • 6/Turing: "I’m not interested in developing a powerful brain. All I’m after is just a mediocre brain, something like the president of AT&T."
    • 7/And I think that's actually what happened, and it happened in the form of enterprise software: the code that runs businesses today.
    • 8/Yep, that's right: Actual AI is SAP, Peoplesoft, Oracle, http://t.co/IQqvVD9Xj7, Workday, Netsuite, Great Plains, and a thousand others.
    • 9/AI turned out to be the last thing anyone expected. Banal.
    • 10/Credits: Conversations with @cdixon @balajis @bhorowitz; http://t.co/soBTqHeeTn http://t.co/jpvhrwsoT7 http://t.co/XKlfEcP9uw

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @HilzFuld The other thing that can't be underestimated is getting the cost structure right.
    • @HilzFuld And the OTHER thing that can't be underestimated is the value of 100% offensive focus, not protecting an offline business.
    • @HilzFuld Those latter two are persistently underestimated by the incumbents.
    • Congrats to @autismspeaks & the Google Cloud Genomics team on creating a huge public database for autism research -- http://t.co/AKwcfntEx1 — (RT @jhuber)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @HilzFuld I think it's easier now at least in many cases. The art and science is much better understood now.
    • @HilzFuld And advertisers are figuring out they have to move the money over. They're highly receptive to the conversation.
    • @HilzFuld And so many incumbents are just collapsing in place and not putting up a real fight.
    • @HilzFuld Also don't underestimate the hybrid business models these days. Ads + subs + conferences works pretty well as an example.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @munilass I am increasingly coming around to a view that there may not have even been a dot com bubble. (Nobody agrees with me on that.)
    • @munilass It is striking how many failed dot com ideas from the late 90's are working today (in every sense of working, e.g. profit).
    • @munilass I think it's possible that VCs of that era were, at least for the most part, making rational bets against big opportunities.
    • @munilass I think it's possible that dot coms got sideswiped by what was (in my view) undoubtedly a (bigger & different) telecom bubble.
    • @munilass ...and that there's a counterfactual history where telecom investment didn't go so nuts & dot coms on whole would have been fine.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/How important is new communication technology both to maintenance of state control & subversion of state control? http://t.co/mpxdNs0dzf
    • 2/1989: "40 years into the era of xerography, Soviet Union is moving its photocopiers from guarded, double-locked, steel-covered doors..."
    • 3/"...admitting photocopiers are standard office equipment and not really the grave threat to state security as they were once perceived."
    • 4/"Main Directorate of Protecting Public Order said recent spread to more than 60,000 different Soviet organizations of photocopiers..."
    • 5/"...had made its task of supervising their operation virtually impossible...freed in major step towards glasnost, or political openness."
    • 6/"Inspectors from the Interior Ministry will no longer be checking each machine to ensure that it is locked in secure quarters..."
    • 7/"...that complete registers are kept of the documents copied and that the numbers of copies correspond to tamper-proof counters."
    • 8/"People had faced very long lines [to make copies], as they and their papers were scrutinized at authorized photocopier offices."
    • 9/"Izvestia said 'the primary goal was to prevent the proliferation of undesirable texts' in the Soviet Union..."
    • 10/"'From the first days of Soviet power, even typewriters were put under tight supervision, and that was abolished only recently.'"
    • 11/"Chief of Second Department of Main Directorate of Protecting Public Order, said new technology has overtaken controls on photocopiers."
    • 12/"With computers/optical scanners/laser printers 'to produce a whole newspaper'...regulations governing copiers have become pointless."

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @vgr Step 1: Locate someplace cheap with great Internet access; perhaps downtown Detroit.
    • @vgr Step 2: Do programming jobs on Rentacoder/eLance/equivalent enough to cover expenses; build A+ online reputation for great results.
    • @vgr Step 3: Spend 2/3rds remaining time becoming primary contributor to leading-edge open source projects on Github.
    • @vgr Step 3 cont'd: Build amazing reputation on Github and in developer community for amazing code in leading-edge areas (eg Bitcoin).
    • @vgr Step 4: Spend remaining 1/3 time blogging and tweeting on those leading-edge areas; build online reputation as lead expert in field.
    • @vgr Step 5: Iterate as needed until one gets serious job offer at credible company to move to Silicon Valley. Move to Silicon Valley.
    • @vgr Step 6: Work at that company for 2-4 years and knock the ball out of the park; continue open source and blogging work on the side.
    • @vgr Step 7: Based on accumulate reputation and results, get job at top SV rocket ship company like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest.
    • @vgr Step 8: Work at that company for 2-4 years and knock the ball out of the park; continue open source/blogging; meet lots of people.
    • @vgr Step 9: Start own company with smartest people one has met along the way; off to the races.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Have to post this again because it's just too good not to -- who's coming to Silicon Valley from @BW: http://t.co/0ZgujRkP4M
    • 2/One third of Silicon Valley startups are founded by Indian-Americans.
    • 3/As of 2010, Asian-Americans are the majority of Silicon Valley tech workforce: 50% vs 40% for Caucasians.
    • 4/Possibly eye-opening sources of talent in quantity: Japan, Middle East, Vietnam, France, Pacific Islands, Africa, Caribbean.
    • 5/Silicon Valley is a powerful successful example of the "melting pot" theory: ignore origin and ethnicity, come together to do big things.
    • 6/Why we must continue to push to expand access/openness/inclusion to all origins/ethnicities/genders/religions: huge opportunities ahead.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 2/First, some tech superpowers help us as consumers, but many upgrade us as creators, builders, inventors, designers, artists: *producers*.
    • 3/While it is true that tech superpowers can replace need for prior manual labor, it's also true that they enhance our ability to produce.
    • 4/Both sides of the equation are critical, otherwise one collapses into the Luddite fallacy and holds back progress that benefits everyone.
    • 5/This is also why I think we need an ongoing vigorous social safety net, to help people bridge gaps in their lives as tech leaps forward.
    • 6/Second, tech superpowers at this point are being applied more or less equally to individuals, governments, and businesses.
    • 7/In Orwell's vision, government got all the tech superpowers. In our world, everyone seems to be getting them all at the same time.
    • 8/Same tech advances that enable NSA surveillance also enabled Edward Snowden to walk out of NSA with 1.7 million classified documents.
    • 9/(Ability to use a web crawler and a thumb drive would have been the fantasy of all time for Kim Philby. Times have changed.)
    • 10/The impact of tech superpower upgrading of individuals, businesses, and governments radically shifts power balances between the three.
    • 11/The politics of the next 30 years will be in large part defined by the shifting impact of tech superpowers across indiv, bus, and gov't.
    • 12/Prior conflicts like Snowden, SOPA, the Arab Spring, and cybercrime are only open gambits -- the real drama is yet to come.
    • 1/Part 4 of "tech gives people superpowers" tweetstream (part 3: https://t.co/2qAzQwUY1k) -- implications of the growth of tech superpowers.
    • 13/My nomination: Tech-driven price deflation; lowers prices, reduces measured GDP & productivity, while boosting consumer welfare.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Progressive and smart economist Jared Bernstein on the productivity puzzle of robots eating all the jobs (or not): http://t.co/8Gd2AQugYn
    • 2/"Productivity growth was up 1% last year and has averaged 0.8% since 2011...[a] smooth trend through the numbers."
    • 3/"The trend suggests that the pace of productivity growth has decelerated since the first half of the 2000s: begs an important question."
    • 4/"I keep hearing about 'the end of work' based on the assumption that the pace of labor-saving technology—robots, AI—has accelerated."
    • 5/"Maybe it has—there’s lots of good anecdotes to that effect, most recently that geeky-looking Google self-driving car."
    • 6/"But the robots-are-coming advocates need to explain why a phenomenon that should be associated with accelerating productivity..."
    • 7/"... is allegedly occurring over a fairly protracted period where the [productivity] trend in output per hour is going the other way."
    • 8/"A shave with Occam’s razor [explanation]...would be weak demand and its corollary, weak capital investment [nothing to do with robots]."
    • 9/"Until someone can convince me what’s wrong with the above argument, I don’t want to hear that automation is precluding full employment."
    • 10/My own take: We're still coming out of a severe macroeconomic down cycle, credit crisis, deleveraging, liquidity trap.
    • 11/Prevailing pessimistic economic theories--death of innovation, robots eating all the jobs, crisis of inequality--will fade with recovery.
    • 12/For bonus points, identify the other tech-driven economic force that could explain low productivity at a time of great tech advancement.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @alexismadrigal @tonyflo Other implication of better understanding of brain chemistry/neurology = revolution in theory of crime&punishment.
    • @alexismadrigal @tonyflo The question of what behaviors individuals are actually responsible for is going to open way up.
    • @alexismadrigal @tonyflo As well as, what to do about people behaving in societally deviant ways who scientifically can't help it.
    • @pmarca transparency should be another one. The super power to democratize knowledge and call out bullshit on the spot. — (RT @miguelsampedro)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Part 3 of "tech gives people superpowers" tweetstream (part 2: https://t.co/WaEQoefuqz) -- new superpowers coming in the next 10 years.
    • 2/This is a difficult list to make; there are hundreds if not thousands of candidate superpowers on deck that could hit big next 10 years.
    • 3/Crowdfunding = superpower to instantly raise money from global customers and investors for millions of new ideas, products, businesses
    • 4/Quantified self = superpower to understand one's own body continuously in real time, optimize health & wellness with high precision
    • 5/3D printing = superpower to design and instantly manufacture physical objects with zero inventory, supply chain, or transportation
    • 6/Combine modern bio, 3D printing, & computing-->prosthetics & exoskeletons; superpower: paralyzed to walk, disabled to abled, bilnd to see
    • 7/Bitcoin & blockchain = superpower to instantly & safely transact, do business, engage in commerce & trade with everyone in the world
    • 8/Virtual reality = superpower to experience other places and times, real and created, serious and fun; telepresence replaces transportation
    • 9/Augmented reality = superpower to know a million times more about the world around you and everything in it; step function increase in IQ
    • 10/Self-driving cars = superpower to dramatically reduce # of cars on road, turn parking lots into parks, while saving millions of lives
    • 11/Drones = superpower to easily function in the air just like we do on the ground; see from the sky, deliver in the air, and fly in VR
    • 12/And yes, robots = superpower to augment human physical capability; easily do physical work too difficult or dangerous for unaided humans
    • 13/The nature of each of these is that we don't yet live in a world where they are ubiquitous: very difficult to imagine true implications.
    • 14/We therefore can predict only a very small fraction of the things that people will do with these superpowers once they have them.
    • @pmarca Knowledge is power. Getting access to right information is the first step in it...wearables, quantified self, drones, satellites... — (RT @bznotes)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Techcrunch commenters during coverage of Uber's <$50M pre-money valuation financing round 3 years ago: http://t.co/x8uvBheDAj HT @semil
    • 2/"As someone who has been in the car service business his whole life, a valuation that high is asking for trouble."
    • 3/"I wish them luck; however, it is a very mom and pop industry and you will be lucky to just make a living."
    • 4/"If Uber becomes the most successful [car service company] out there, you are not looking at a billion dollar company by any means."
    • 5/"I don't know of any competitive advantage Uber has over Carey or Boston Coach...which can launch similar technology in matter of weeks."
    • 6/"I'm looking forward to seeing if Uber is actually successful outside of San Francisco."
    • 7/"Wow, $11 million for a company that is equivalent to calling a taxi! Why didn't I think of that!"
    • 8/"I'm surprised. Is Uber in the clear yet legally? Seems like they could still be shut down any day."

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • Between "Halt and Catch Fire" and "Silicon Valley", people can finally see what tech startups are actually like on the inside.
    • @mrsenorhill @cdixon I think for smart VCs you can increasingly show them a combo of a small # of extremely happy customers...
    • @mrsenorhill @cdixon ...and then a bottoms-up market sizing estimate that shows how that small # could become large in the future.
    • "Halt and Catch Fire" on AMC is an absolutely pitch-perfect recreation of the birth of the PC industry: http://t.co/Ln6yRku0Rp

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @WillOremus You'd correlate passwords and logins with IP addresses, cookies, etc.
    • @WillOremus But you'd interfere with a lot of legitimate logins for users travelling &/or using multiple devices in the process.
    • @WillOremus And then the compounding problem of various family members each travelling &/or using multiple devices.
    • @WillOremus So you'd take a hit to customer satisfaction that would really have to be worth it.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @takingpitches @koxinga21 Hedge fund mgr friend of mine argues that ACA is an implicit subsidy of capital owners at taxpayer expense.
    • @takingpitches @koxinga21 ACA motivates owners of businesses to push employees down/out of employer-backed health care plans.
    • @takingpitches @koxinga21 As well as transform full time jobs into part time jobs to be able to tap into government program more.
    • @takingpitches @koxinga21 Net result = taxpayers cover more health care costs, employers cover less. Capital owners win, taxpayers lose.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @koxinga21 Second, the bad news: Baumol's cost disease; consequence of healthcare not seeing sufficient productivity advances.
    • @koxinga21 The answer to both has to be to crank up technology innovation in healthcare, to drive up quality & drive down cost.
    • @koxinga21 A positive case study for what's possible is the cost of LASIK eye surgery, which has fallen dramatically in 15 years.
    • @koxinga21 We should bring that same rapid cost decline to every other major part of healthcare spending through better technology.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @koxinga21 So that gets to another really important issue, which is the rising cost of healthcare (the basket of products & services in HC).
    • @koxinga21 Healthcare costs naturally want to rise extremely fast for two really important reasons:
    • @koxinga21 First, the good news: definition of healthcare keeps expanding as more treatments, drugs, protocols are invented.
    • @koxinga21 We not only want everyone to have healthcare, we want everyone to have everything IN healthcare which keeps expanding.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • @koxinga21 It's MOOCs but also Google, Wikipedia, Youtube, Kahn Academy, Github, Wolfram Alpha, Google Scholar, and thousands more.
    • @koxinga21 All free to everyone with a smartphone + net connection, which will be ~6 billion people by the end of the decade.
    • @koxinga21 This goes to the argument I had with economist friend, who said "Most people are like horses, they can only offer their labor."
    • @koxinga21 I deeply have more faith in the capabilities and potential of people everywhere than that, & increasingly they'll have the tools.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Part two of "tech gives people superpowers" tweetstream (part 1: https://t.co/2Bx6rZwefV) -- new superpowers just in the last ~10 years:
    • 2/Google, Wikipedia = superpower to ask any question, get any answer, as many as you want, for free -- from the world's total knowledge base
    • 3/Facebook = superpower to always be connected with everyone important in your life, regardless of geography, all the time, for free
    • 4/eBay, Etsy, Alibaba = superpower to take goods you make or want to resell to a global market of buyers, with transparent & fair pricing
    • 5/GPS + Google Maps + smartphones = superpower to never be lost, always be able to find anything, and always know where your kids are
    • 6/Spotify, Beats = superpower to listen to the entirety of recorded music in human culture as much as you want, anytime you want
    • 7/Lyft, Uber, AirBNB, HotelTonight = superpower to be able to easily move around and then stay places with transparency and safety
    • 8/Skype, Slack, Asana = superpower to form into teams and collaborate on projects with people all over the world regardless of geography
    • 9/Github = superpower as a programmer to build new software with unprecedented ease and power, on top of a global base of existing code
    • 10/AWS = superpower as a programmer to access a global supercomputer with miraculous power on demand for mere dollars
    • 11/These are only a few examples -- there are probably 100 more new tech superpowers just in the last 10 years of similar magnitude.
    • 12/I am firmly convinced many people are fundamentally underestimating the power and potential of these new superpowers in the years ahead.
    • 13/We are only at the very beginning of understanding what people all over the world are going to be able to create and build from here.

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/A rare interview with one of my heroes: Stanford Professor Donald Knuth, author of "Art of Computer Programming"...
    • 2/"I can speak only to people who happen to have grown up with the strange kind of 'brain organization' that I seem to have..."
    • 3/"For lack of a better word, let me simply say that I'm a 'geek.' I haven't got a good definition or a good litmus test for geekhood..."
    • 4/"...but I definitely know it when I see it; and I see it in about 2% of the world's population. The main characteristic is an ability..."
    • 5/"...to understand many levels of abstraction simultaneously, and to shift effortlessly between in-the-large and in-the-small."
    • 6/"Dear young person, if you are a geek, the world needs you, and you will never run out of opportunities to apply your talents."

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @mmasnick @mathewi @dangillmor It's within NSA remit to monitor SIGINT into and out of the US involving foreigners.
    • @mmasnick @mathewi @dangillmor So how to fulfill that mission when one person in the communication chain is an American citizen?
    • @mmasnick @mathewi @dangillmor It's a very complex issue. Smart people in government have grappled with it for decades.
    • @mmasnick @mathewi @dangillmor I'm not saying surveillance of US citizens is right. I'm saying this particular issue is complex.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @mathewi @dangillmor Snowden has committed many acts by revealing many secrets.
    • @mathewi @dangillmor The majority are self-evidently treason as they reveal foreign intelligence operations not involving US citizens.
    • @mathewi @dangillmor There are a handful involving US citizens that may deserve whistleblower status.
    • @mathewi @dangillmor But even those are complex, and not just slam dunk black and white "he's a hero".
    • @mathewi @dangillmor Like I said, for example, I don't think phone metadata is a black and white issue the way it's being portrayed.
    • @mathewi @dangillmor Another example, the early PRISM reporting was spectacularly wrong, which has stuck.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @dangillmor The whistleblower case could be legitimately argued, in my view, for issues specific to US citizens.
    • @dangillmor There is no whistleblower case for revealing foreign intelligence operations not involving US citizens.
    • @dangillmor Which is the majority of what has happened.
    • @dangillmor To just ignore that or say it's OK is a whole new definition of OK from all US legal norms and precedents.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @dangillmor The vast majority of the Snowden leaks have nothing to do with US citizens or US infrastructure.
    • @dangillmor The comprehensive leaking of US intelligence operations globally are treasonous by definition.
    • @dangillmor If Snowden and his allies had only revealed issues specific to US citizens & US companies, that would be one thing.
    • @dangillmor But that is very much not what has happened.
    • @dangillmor Snowden fans have cognitive dissonance, are ignoring all of his leaks that have nothing to do with US citizens: most of them.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @dangillmor NSA has been dual mission: protect US infrastructure + spy on foreign communication. That's obviously not sustainable.
    • @dangillmor As you know, at Netscape we were a big part of the fight with the NSA to overturn export controls on strong encryption.
    • @dangillmor I am an unconditional fan of unlimited strong encryption worldwide and always have been, as demonstrated by us creating SSL.
    • @dangillmor And I think the "protecting US infrastructure" part of the mission needs to increasingly dominate between the two.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/For the following, substitute rapidly rising tide of products & services for "Coke":
    • 2/"What's great about this country is that America started the tradition where the richest consumers..."
    • 3/"...buy essentially the same things as the poorest. You can be watching TV and see Coca-Cola: you know that the President drinks Coke..."
    • 4/"...Liz Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke, too. A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke..."
    • 5/"...than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good..."
    • 6/".... Liz Taylor knows it, the President knows it, the bum knows it, and you know it." --Andy Warhol, 1975, http://t.co/jvqC0j07Nz

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @adamgurri @elidourado Economists who are not engineers are way more generous on the rate of progress of technology than engineers are.
    • @adamgurri @elidourado If I could also handwave my way into inventing robots that do everything, I'd be all set :-).
    • 1/Technology innovation disproportionately helps the poor more than it helps the rich, as the poor spend more of their income on products.
    • 2/This sounds like it must be a controversial and politically charged position, and yet it is not -- it flows from basic economics.
    • 3/The best way to understand this is by historical example: What the rich used to have and what the poor now have, due to tech innovation.
    • 4/Rich have always been able to pay servants to wash dishes; due to tech change, now most US homes have automatic dishwashers.
    • 5/Rich have always been able to pay servants to wash and dry clothes; now most US homes have automated washers and dryers.
    • 6/Rich were able to afford to have fresh ice delivered daily to make iceboxes work; now all American homes have refrigerators.
    • 7/Rich were always able to afford to hire musicians to play in their homes; now audio equipment and digital music are cheap for everyone.
    • 8/At one point only the rich could pay for horses, buggies, stables, coachmen -- now cars are easily affordable by almost everyone in West.
    • 9/Go far enough back, only rich could afford hand-copied books or to employ scribes; printing press made books accessible to the poor.
    • 10/Technology innovation is the main process by which luxury items become produced, packaged, and made affordable for everyone.
    • 11/Opposing tech innovation is punishing the poor by slowing the process by which they get things previously only affordable to the rich.
    • 12/And, tech innovation is the process by which everyone in the world will be able to afford things that are plentiful in the West today.
    • 13/A great lens on this is the US HUD housing survey; shows rapid material progress of poor Americans quite clearly. http://t.co/UkuFNDuUzj
    • Econorobotodesign (noun): The process by which economists with no technical training make up imaginary robots that can do everything.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @paultomkinson The protocol is that we can't invest in two companies that directly compete at the time of our investment.
    • @paultomkinson So if we are already in one company, and another comes along that competes for the same market, we can't invest.
    • @paultomkinson There can be arguments about what competes with what. We generally say "competing for same customer and $ of spend".
    • In case you missed it! Entrepreneur Justin Rosenstein (@rosenstein) on the nature and purpose of work -- http://t.co/6wlzrpXmR8

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Cycle time compression may be the most underestimated force in determining winners & losers in tech.
    • 2/First clear instance of cycle time compression: Cloud/SAAS vs on-premise enterprise software.
    • 3/Cloud/SAAS development cycles can be far faster than on-premise software; single instance deployed instantly to all customers.
    • 4/Further, customers can try and adopt cloud/SAAS far faster than they can try and adopt on-premise software.
    • 5/Implication: Cloud/SAAS is probably impossible to compete with for on-premise software across multiple product cycles.
    • 6/Second clear instance of cycle time compression: Product improvement & customer upgrade cycles for phones vs TVs and cars.
    • 7/Consumers can upgrade their phones every 1-2 years, vs TVs at 5-8 years? Cars at 10-12 years? With phones improving by leaps & bounds.
    • 8/Implication: At given point in time, your TV can be 4-6 years behind your phone; your car can be 9-10 years behind your phone.
    • 9/Implication: TVs and cars will become accessories for phones, not the other way around. And already happening: Airplay, Chromecast.
    • 10Interesting note: Web cycle times still much faster than mobile app cycle times due to restrictive mobile app store policies.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • So many people proclaiming "technology will kill all jobs" makes me long for the days when so many people proclaimed "innovation is dead".
    • @pmarca Which was, like, a year and a half ago...
    • @pmarca Or the days when "all US programming jobs are moving to India" which was like less than a decade ago...
    • @pmarca Or the days when "Japan is going to own the entire technology industry" which was 25 years ago...
    • @pmarca Or the days when "the Soviet Union is going to out-industrialize the US into the ground" which was 50 years ago...

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/This is probably a good time to say that I don't believe "robots will eat all the jobs".
    • 2/Preceding tweetstream was to extrapolate the idea out all the way, not to make the case that it's what's going to happen.
    • 3/First, robots and AI are not nearly as powerful and sophisticated as I think people are starting to fear. Really.
    • 4/With my VC/tech hat on I wish they were, but they're not. Enormous gaps between what we want them to do and what they can do.
    • 5/So there is still an enormous gap between what many people do in jobs today and what robots and AI can replace, and will be for decades.
    • 6/Second, even when robots and AI are far more powerful, there will still be many things that people can do that robots and AI can't.
    • 7/Creativity, innovation, exploration, art, science, entertainment, caring for others... we have no idea how to make machines do these.
    • 8/Third, when automation is abundant and cheap, human experiences become rare and valuable. Flows from our nature as human beings.
    • 9/Examples: Price of recorded music goes to zero; live touring business explodes. Price of drip coffee drops; handmade gourmet coffee grows.
    • 10/You see this effect throughout luxury goods markets. E.g. handmade high-end clothes. Will extend out to far more consumers in future.
    • 11/Fourth, just as most of us today have jobs that weren't even invented 100 years ago, same will be true 100 years from now.
    • 12/We have no idea what the fields/industries/businesses/jobs of the future will be; we just know we will create an enormous # of them.
    • 13/If robots/AI replace people for many of the things we do today, the new fields we create will build on a huge # of people then available.
    • 14/People 50, 100, 150, 200 years ago would marvel at the jobs that exist today; same will be true 50-100-150-200 years from now.
    • 15/To argue huge #'s of people will be available but we will find nothing for them (us) to do is to dramatically short human creativity.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 10/Here's the arbitrage logic: Suppose humans make widget X profitably at $10 price to consumer. Robots can make X at $5 price to consumer.
    • 11/Economics drive X to be made entirely by robots; consumers win. But then imagine owner of robots cranks X price to consumer to $20.
    • 12/Suddenly it's profitable for humans to make X again; entrepreneurs immediately start companies to make X with humans for price $10 again.
    • 13/Therefore, with rare exceptions, there won't be states where "robots eat jobs" and "products get more expensive". Almost always cheaper.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/The necessary consequence of "robots eat all the jobs" is "everything gets really cheap".
    • 2/The main reason to use robots instead of people to make something is when the robot can make it less expensively.
    • 3/When people can make something that costs less than what robots can make, then it makes economic sense to use people instead of robots.
    • 4/This is basic economic arbitrage at work. It sounds it must be a controversial claim but it's simply following the economic logic.
    • 5/So "robots eat jobs in field X" = "products get cheaper in field X" = "consumer standard of living increase in field X" -- necessarily.
    • 6/So arguing against "robots eat jobs" is equivalent to arguing "punish consumers with unnecessarily higher prices".
    • 7/Indeed, had robots/machines not eaten many jobs in agriculture and industry already, we would have a far lower standard of living today.
    • 8/Just as increases in consumer goods prices disproportionately hurt the poor, holding back on robots eating jobs would more hurt the poor.
    • 9/Same logic applies to trade barriers (import tariffs): disproportionately hurt poor consumers by inflicting higher consumer goods prices.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @Noahpinion Reading then-contemporary theories from similar periods in the last 100 years is eye opening.
    • @Noahpinion By the time I graduated college in 1993, I *knew* Japan would own everything and US economy was dying.
    • @Noahpinion By 1996, all of those theories had been dropped straight down the memory hole.
    • @Noahpinion We are all SO confident that we can extrapolate from the recent past and predict the future.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @Noahpinion To the extent it's been happening, I bet most of it has been the impact of dual macroeconomic crises.
    • @Noahpinion Equity crash of 2000 and subsequent recession, and debt crash of 2008 and subsequent whatever-you-call-it.
    • @Noahpinion I bet broad-based economic recovery follows and most of these issues drop back off the radar screen.
    • @Noahpinion Each down cycle seems to produce super-compelling doom and gloom theories that vanish upon the following recovery.
    • @Noahpinion 30's = capitalism doomed; 70's = inflation forever; 1989-1993 = Japan owns everything; and so on.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @shanselman At the start, the rich are already well off. They have material possessions and servants and all the rest.
    • @shanselman It takes technology driven change to put those things in forms and at prices where people who are not rich can afford them.
    • @shanselman Examples everywhere. Consider difference between employing a full-time messenger vs making a Skype call.
    • @shanselman Consider difference between employing full-time washerpeson vs buying a cheap washing machine.
    • @shanselman Consider difference between hiring a string quartet to perform live vs buying the same track on iTunes.
    • @shanselman Most of the things in our lives are things that only the wealthiest people in the world could afford 100 years ago.
    • @shanselman Not to mention the things that even the wealthiest couldn't possibly have had 100 years ago, starting w/penicillin.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Thought experiment: Posit a world in which all material needs are provided for free, by robots and material synthesizers.
    • 2/Housing, energy, health care, food, transportation --> All delivered to everyone for $0, by machines. Zero jobs in those fields remaining.
    • 3/What would be the key characteristics of that world, and what would it be like to live in it?
    • 4/First, it's a consumer utopia: Everyone enjoys a standard of living that kings and Popes could have only dreamed.
    • 5/Fifth, all human time, labor, energy, ambition, and goals reorient to the intangibles: the big questions, the deep needs.
    • 6/Human nature expresses itself fully, for the first time in history. Without physical need constraints, we will be whoever we want to be.
    • 7/The main fields of human endeavor will be culture, arts, sciences, creativity, philosophy, experimentation, exploration, adventure.
    • 8/Rather than nothing to do, we would have everything to do: curiosity, artistic and scientific creativity, new forms of status seeking (!).
    • 9/Imagine six, or 10, billion people doing nothing but arts and sciences, culture and exploring and learning. What a world that would be.
    • 10/The problem seems unlikely to be that we'll get there too fast. The problem seems like to be that we'll get there too slow.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/The flip side of "robots eat all the jobs" not being discussed: The current revolution in the "means of production" going to everyone.
    • 2/In the form of the smartphone (and tablet and PC) + mobile broadband + the Internet: Will be in almost everyone's hands by 2020.
    • 3/Then everyone gets access to unlimited information, communication, education, access to markets, participate in global market economy.
    • 4/This is not a world we have ever lived in: Historically most people in most places cut off from these things, usually to a high degree.
    • 5/It is hard to believe that the result will not be a widespread global unleashing of creativity, productivity, and human potential.
    • 6/It is hard to believe that people will get these capabilities and then come up with... absolutely nothing useful to do with them.
    • 7/And yet that is the subtext to the "this time is different" argument that there won't be new ideas, fields, industries, businesses, jobs.
    • 8/In arguing this with an economist friend, response was "But most people are like horses; they have only their manual labor to offer."
    • 9/I don't believe that, and I don't want to live in a world in which that's the case. I think people everywhere have far more potential.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/One of the most interesting topics in modern times is the "robots eat all the jobs" thesis; best book on topic: http://t.co/2bYZrGgbhr
    • 2/The thesis is that computers can more and more substitute for human labor, thus displacing jobs and creating unemployment.
    • 3/At core, this is Luddism (http://t.co/7lZ8vKCXrw) -- "lump of labor" fallacy, that there is a fixed amount of work to be done.
    • 4/The counterargument is Milton Friedman: Human wants and needs are infinite; there is always more to do. 200 years of history confirms.
    • 5/To avoid the Luddite mistake, must believe "this time is different", that either (a) there won't be new wants and needs (vs human nature),
    • 6/Or (b) It won't matter that there are new wants and needs, most people won't be able to adapt to contribute & have jobs in new fields.
    • 7/While it is certainly true that technological change displaces current work & jobs, and that is a serious issue that must be addressed...
    • 8/It is equally true, and important, that the other result of each such change is a step function increase in consumer standards of living.
    • 9/As consumers, we virtually never resist technology change that provides us with better products/services even when it costs jobs...
    • 10/Nor should we. This is how we build a better world, improve quality of life, better provide for our kids, solve fundamental problems.
    • 11/Make no mistake, advocating slowing tech change to preserve jobs = advocating punishing consumers, stalling quality of life improvements.
    • 12/So how then to best help individuals who are buffeted by producer-side technology change and lose jobs they wish they could keep?
    • 13/First, focus on increasing access to education and skill development -- which itself will increasingly be delivered via technology.
    • 14/Second, let markets work (voluntary contracts and trade) so that capital and labor can rapidly reallocate to create new fields and jobs.
    • 15/Third, a vigorous social safety net so that people are not stranded and unable to provide for their families.
    • 16/The loop closes as rapid technological productivity improvement and resulting economic growth make it easy to pay for safety net.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Outstanding piece in NYT on what American kids were like in the 19th century -- eye opening: http://t.co/gOoafKfo0V
    • "American children of the 19th century had a reputation. Returning British visitors reported on American kids who showed no respect..."
    • "...who swore and fought, who appeared — at age 10 — 'calling for liquor at the bar, or puffing a cigar in the streets,' as one wrote."
    • "There were really no children in 19th-century America, travelers often claimed, only 'small stuck-up caricatures of men and women.'"
    • "The story of every 19th-century empire builder — Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt — seems to begin with a striving 10-year-old."

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @trengriffin So here's the challenge, paraphrasing from my friend Andy Rachleff who has studied this topic in depth:
    • @trengriffin There have been two institutional portfolio investing strategies post WWII. The first was 60/40 stocks & bonds.
    • @trengriffin The second was David Swensen "endowment" model as described in his book http://t.co/gbsQEgI0Eb
    • @trengriffin What will the third be?
    • You should watch the premier of "Halt And Catch Fire" tonight. It's great. Or online here: http://t.co/u5a7bcQW2R — (RT @fmanjoo)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @benparr 1 Far better editing/curation tools to view lists of users (e.g. those I follow), what lists they're in, edit lists, etc.
    • @benparr 2 Surface lists in the UI so they're not so buried and hard to get to e.g. on iPhone app.
    • @benparr 3 Better discovery -- to discover interesting new lists and do things with them.
    • @benparr I'm really surprised List functionality is so crude today given that they're ideal for both new users & experienced power users.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Europe adding illegal drug, prostitution, and smuggling activities to official measures of GDP (!!): http://t.co/j5Pkqt64dX
    • "To some, it smacks of 1987, when Italy started taking account of its [illegal] shadow economy..."
    • "As a result, the economy grew by 18% overnight, surging past Britain to be the West’s fourth-largest economy..."
    • "The event was hailed as il sorpasso (the overtaking) and the source of much national joy." !!

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @vgr There is no substitute for the actual development of authentic market economies and democratic institutions.
    • @vgr Much of foreign aid is counterproductive for this reason. Particularly as it routinely get siphoned off to support the status quo.
    • @vgr Not surprising that attempting to pay more than productivity justifies = money siphoned off by intermediaries, reinforces status quo.
    • @vgr Solution has to be to raise productivity, increase economic opportunity and access to skill development, encourage good governance.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @BenedictEvans @simondlr In a sense they are highly dominant if you use the traditional definitions of book and ebook.
    • @BenedictEvans @simondlr But in another, very important sense they are a very small % of "words getting from authors to readers".
    • @BenedictEvans @simondlr They are a much smaller % of "words getting from authors to readers" than the book pub cartel was 20 years ago.
    • @BenedictEvans @simondlr I think that's really going on is that the whole concept of "book" needs rethinking just like "newspaper" or "CD".

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @BenedictEvans But then the paradox is, what does that say about the actual consumer value delivered in the prior regime?
    • @BenedictEvans It would seem to say that there was only a fixed amount of demand for books and they were overpriced until now.
    • @BenedictEvans In which case consumers have been getting screwed up until now, and finally the market is clearing properly now.
    • @BenedictEvans Which would also be a gain in consumer welfare, not a loss.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @BenedictEvans There's a paradox at the heart of your theory that lower prices could result in less writers/books/choice.
    • @BenedictEvans Which is that you are assuming there are no elasticity effects or even substitution effects.
    • @BenedictEvans In that you say lower prices = fewer authors & fewer books with no corresponding demand increase or product substitutes.
    • @BenedictEvans But then the paradox is, what does that say about the actual consumer value delivered in the prior regime?

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 3/"...and people stayed employed and real wages kept rising." https://t.co/YtvdkmIIiA
    • 1/"Consider the development of the tractor, which mechanized virtually all of agriculture over the 20th century..."
    • 2/"Somehow new desires and demands sprung up for new kinds of manufactured goods, many of pure entertainment value..."
    • 1/"Economists call it the 'lump of labor fallacy.' It's the idea that there is a fixed amount of work to be done in the world..."
    • 2/"...so any increase in the amount each worker can produce reduces the number of available jobs."
    • 3/[Or, equivalently, the adoption of labor-saving technology, or the increased use of offshore labor.]
    • 4/"(A famous example: those dire warnings in the 1950's that automation would lead to mass unemployment.)"
    • 5/"As the derisive name suggests, economists view idea with contempt, yet the fallacy makes a comeback whenever the economy is sluggish."
    • 6/Paul Krugman in 2003, http://t.co/G2YuGi05hb

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @TheStalwart The big thing that happens around most stock offerings these days is ultra-aggressive shorting into the offering.
    • @TheStalwart Or in the case of an IPO, ultra-aggressive shorting into the lockup coming off (usually at the six month point).
    • @TheStalwart During the periods in which this aggressive shorting is happening, longs also want the stock to fall...
    • @TheStalwart ...because when the offering is complete or lockup is over, longs build their actual positions, so they want to buy low.
    • @TheStalwart So around secondaries and lockup releases, effectively everyone in the market wants the stock to fall.
    • @TheStalwart Which can then bleed straight into the press coverage. It becomes a self-reinforcing spiral downward.
    • @TheStalwart Which is why we always advise companies to not go public until they are so bulletproof that they can easily get through this.
    • Hours Worked, No Change; Output, Up 42%: Here's one snapshot of how the U.S. economy evolved in the last 15 ye... http://t.co/Zv9d22AFU4 — (RT @TimothyTTaylor)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 11/Commenters correctly point out that for VC (more than other fields), to calculate "success" rate, must account for great opp'ys passed.
    • 12/I.e. total "at bats" = decisions made to pull trigger whether they worked or not, plus decisions to pass on big wins one could have had.
    • 13/So "at bats" probably more like 120%-140% of # of decisions made to invest. Knocks overall "success" rate down a fair amount. Humbling!
    • Now that we've trained everyone to understand VSOE, time to un-learn it! http://t.co/KSJjg4NdZg — (RT @skupor)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Heading into our 5th anniversary Annual Meeting next week, risk and return of high-tech startups and venture capital on my mind...
    • 2/My rough estimate of my personal "success" (positive vs negative outcome) rate of bets on new products and companies is ~60-65%.
    • 3/Meaning, of course, my "failure" (negative vs positive outcome) rate is ~35-40%. I.e. I'm wrong about several things at all times.
    • 4/Per Tversky/Kahneman loss aversion, the negative outcomes weigh much more heavily on my mind: key challenge = manage own psychology.
    • 5/Per Taleb antifragility, the saving grace of my business is: Each loss capped at 1x, but wins can scale to 1,000x and even beyond.
    • 6/I am also blessed in having partners and colleagues over 20 years and today who are often better at picking than I am.
    • 7/I envy my hedge fund friends who can fully implement "strong views weakly held" and trade out of bad positions any time they want.
    • 8/However, because we make hard commitments for 10+ years, we can win from sleeper hits that take longer to develop. That's very satisfying.
    • 9/On balance, progress is made. But the emotional rollercoaster never stops! Our entire field is constantly exhilarating and terrifying.
    • 10/The other saving grace is seeing people we work with develop, succeed, and flourish. Enormously fulfilling, makes it all worthwhile.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @prchovanec Watching the cable bundle slowly dissolve is fascinating. It's like a Mexican standoff in reverse.
    • @prchovanec In the long run, probably both the content providers and the cable companies are better off unbundled.
    • @prchovanec But both sides are deeply worried about going through the transition.
    • @prchovanec So each backs away slowly from the other, hoping the other won't start backing away even faster.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @wild_er No, not at all. Why I am so excited that global inequality is shrinking rapidly. Rise of billions of people out of poverty.
    • @wild_er I think there are two definitions of middle class. One is classical idea of the bourgeoisie: merchants, traders, businesspeople.
    • @wild_er The other emerged in the US post-WWII: college wages for high school educations, insulated by unions and protectionism.
    • @wild_er What we need is a lot more of the former -- which we are getting globally right now, which is tremendously exciting and positive.
    • Full video of #VMware panel featuring @MelissaLeeCNBC, @pmarca, CEOs of @FireEye @EMCcorp @VMware & @Stanford. http://t.co/nSGOZlEw0w — (RT @oliverroll)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @FabiusMaximus01 Books like this have two levels of impact: one inside academic economics, the other in the real world.
    • @FabiusMaximus01 The consequences in the real world can be profound; e.g. a prior book named "Capital" by a European economist.
    • @FabiusMaximus01 It's dirty pool for economists to play the "but we're just doing academic economics" card when challenged.
    • @FabiusMaximus01 Piketty himself is politically active; proactive support for both Royal and Hollande in France.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @henryfarrell I think that's increasingly clear.
    • @henryfarrell I'm not saying he did it with intent to deceive. But I think he had a political position and worked the data to justify it.
    • @henryfarrell We are talking about someone who has actively advised and supported both Royal and Hollande.
    • @pmarca And if you’re actually interested in what I think about the Piketty debate, it’s here - http://t.co/rumncATYYD — (RT @henryfarrell)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @pm @jfarmer I suspect a more subtle effect than intentional deceit, actually.
    • @pm @jfarmer I think you have a tenured professor at the Paris School of Economists who by his own admission rarely leaves Paris.
    • @pm @jfarmer I think he has a powerful internal belief system married to intense personal ambition, both expressed through the book.
    • @pm @jfarmer I think it is natural for someone like that to struggle to actually be objective even when he wants to be.
    • @pm @jfarmer I think the same is probably true of most of the rest of us. I'm sure it would be true of me if I were an academic economist.
    • @pm @jfarmer The problem I have is that ideological academic economists who screw these things up can really screw up the world, i.e. Marx.
    • @pm @jfarmer Arguably economists' work matters even more than the work of e.g. nuclear physicists. Should be subjected to highest scrutiny.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Posit: All viral content headlines are simply lies.
    • 2/You WILL believe what happened next.
    • 3/Six things about X that you ACTUALLY DON'T need to know.
    • 4/This will NOT change your life.
    • 5/Something someone said that will NOT leave you speechless.
    • 6/A person did this thing and it's NOT weirdly mesmerizing.
    • 7/The happiest people in the world do NOT actually do this.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Thesis: "Do what you love" / "Follow your passion" is dangerous and destructive career advice.
    • 2/We tend to hear it from (a) Highly successful people who (b) Have become successful doing what they love.
    • 3/The problem is that we do NOT hear from people who have failed to become successful by doing what they love.
    • 4/Particularly pernicious problem in tournament-style fields with a few big winners & lots of losers: media, athletics, startups.
    • 5/Better career advice may be "Do what contributes" -- focus on the beneficial value created for other people vs just one's own ego.
    • 6/People who contribute the most are often the most satisfied with what they do -- and in fields with high renumeration, make the most $.
    • 7/Perhaps difficult advice since requires focus on others vs oneself -- perhaps bad fit with endemic narcissism in modern culture?
    • 8/Requires delayed gratification -- may toil for many years to get the payoff of contributing value to the world, vs short-term happiness.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Since people asked, a quick summary of my own views about economic development over the next several decades:
    • 2/We need a lot more economic growth for the benefit of everyone, including and especially for lower-income people here and everywhere.
    • 3/We also need a lot more technological advancement and productivity improvements for the benefit of everyone, again including the poorest.
    • 4/Further, the good news story of our time is the global rise of billions of people out of poverty. We need this to continue, not reverse.
    • 5/Theories and policies that push us backwards toward more stasis, stagnation, and statism are both counterproductive and immoral.
    • 6/None of this is to dismiss the wrenching consequences that individuals may experience during a time of rapid economic change.
    • 7/For that reason, it is both sensible and moral to couple full-throttle technological capitalism with a strong, rigorous social safety net.
    • 8/And in fact, rapid economic growth and technological progress is precisely what makes a strong, rigorous social safety net affordable.
    • 9/We can in fact have our cake and eat it too. Last 500 years have clearly shown that democratic capitalism is a non-zero-sum phenomenon.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • That Piketty's analysis collapsed when subjected to clear-eyed external review is not, unfortunately, surprising: http://t.co/yL1lNUFuwI
    • Peer review is not sufficient to ensure good science. http://t.co/JS5nav69bS http://t.co/bYVkuCoY4C http://t.co/LweLdxB1aa
    • Reproducibility in science is like fact-checking in journalism. Both are clearly required, yet either happening is extremely rare.
    • Perhaps a hippocratic oath for economists and social scientists is needed: Hold off on the sweeping theories until analyses are verified.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @bryankchang Yep, we had that too :-).
    • @bryankchang The major change is that "product management" as a function has been shortened to simply "product".
    • @bryankchang It's a little like the running joke that "a data scientist is a statistician in San Francisco" :-).
    • @bryankchang ... "A head of product is a head of product management in San Francisco."

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/A tweetstorm in four parts: The "superpowers" metaphor for how new technologies enhance human capabilities.
    • 2/New technologies can be thought of as giving people superpowers -- superhuman abilities that humans did not have before.
    • 3/First, let's think about historical technologies through this lens. Starting with man-made fire: superpower to heat and cook things.
    • 4/Electric lighting = superpower to be active and productive even when the sun is down. AC = superpower to act/produce when too hot.
    • 5/Steam power and mechanical engines = superpower to exert physical effort in the world way beyond human or animal muscles.
    • 6/Planes, trains, and automobiles = superpower to travel far faster than feet, animals, or wind could previously carry us.
    • 7/Telegraph & telephone = superpower to communicate faster and cheaper than messages could be physically carried.
    • 8/Threshing machines, combines, and tractors = superpower to grow far more food than we could by hand.
    • 9/And of course there are destructive superpowers: guns and bombs enable killing far more people than we could by hand.
    • 10/For 500+ years, we've collectively been radically enhancing capabilities of ordinary humans through technology superpowers.
    • Although this isn't open to the public, we'll be live-tweeting using #vmwSotS. See you on Twitter! @MelissaLeeCNBC @vmware @pmarca @stanford — (RT @vmwarenews)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @JMBruh No problem :-). I wish I knew. My preferred answer is to promote more competition in the last mile.
    • @JMBruh Get 5-way competition going: cable vs telco vs Google Fiber vs mobile carrier vs Wifi+++.
    • 1/Since people asked, my own "strong views weakly held" personal stance on Net Neutrality:
    • 2/We need to somehow both retain permissionless Internet innovation & telcos ability to get return on capital for network investment.
    • 3/My preferred policy route would center on promoting regulation/deregulation and incentives for more last-mile broadband competition.
    • 4/I see the potential for at least 5-way last-mile broadband competition, at least in non-rural areas:
    • 5/A: cable, B: telco, C: Google Fiber, D: mobile carrier networks LTE & beyond, and E: Wifi and future derivatives.
    • 6/There are a whole bunch of things that could accelerate and enhance C, D, and E. We should identify and do those things asap.
    • 7/One key topic is wireless spectrum; need to get a lot more in the hands of both mobile carriers and into unlicensed classification.
    • 8/Wifi in particular seems underestimated: If a lot more/different spectrum were available, could go much faster & longer range.
    • 9/In addition there are a variety of new ideas including satellites/drones, Steve Perlman's DIDO, etc.; we should warmly embrace those.
    • 10/With sufficient local competition, regulatory pressure much reduced: If one provider plays games, consumers can switch to another.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1/Topics that anyone who wants to take a position on Net Neutrality and the current FCC issues should thoroughly understand:
    • 2/History, technology, and economics of backbones, interconnection agreements, peering, CDNs, caching, colocation.
    • 3/Current and future telco and cable business models including capex and opex models, rate caps, cost of capital, return on investment.
    • 4/History, structure, and case law of FCC regulatory framework, including Acts of 1934 and 1996, Title II common carrier rules, et al.
    • 5/Technology and economics of competitive entrants: Google Fiber, mobile carriers LTE & beyond, Wifi & derivatives, and satellites & drones.
    • 6/Technology, economics, and culture of permissionless Internet innovation at each layer of the stack, contrasted vs prior platform regimes.
    • 7/Side note: I don't think I know anyone who understands all of these topics in depth. I know I don't.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @aresnick No, I mean the opposite. Costs wouldn't be rising in non-productive fields if productivity was broken in other fields.
    • @aresnick I.e. if return to skill was dropping, then that would mean productivity was dropping in fields where prod & comp are linked...
    • @aresnick ...and then Baumol's Disease would no longer be a problem for non-productivity-growing fields like education and healthcare.
    • @aresnick I.e. you can't have Baumol's Disease in some fields without having rising productivity & compensation in other fields.

    2 months ago ago via Twitter