The things I’ve seen

A shortlist of things I read, saw and heard in these last days…

Goodbye and good riddance to 2020! Read about the expected trends for 2021!

Crypto is growing – one trillion and counting

I’ve been using signal (and telegram) for some time now… and now I am less alone

Cloudflare reviewing 2020 with great fashion and a lot of intel 

I finally finished a podcast about superhuman and now I have a dilema… I want to try out it!


A great podcast from the knowledge project, interviewing the CEO of Automatic and one of the fathers of WordPress

Voice enabled tech is a thing to follow – Alexa just announced some cool things

An in-depth great article about Didimo that we invested in at Bright Pixel along side with our friends from Armilar

Top social media monitoring tools

Weforum.org article about remote working

Singapore – a place I have to visit ASAP 

A nice tech crunch article about the Portuguese startup ecosystem

Sizzle.Io – Perhaps a cool and data driven way to promote more sales

Issunboshi – a graphic novel that deserves funding

 

best conversations of 2020

2020 best of The Knowledge Project that I dearly recommend.

it has helped me fight insomnia, as well 😉 (true story)

One of the best ways to learn is a good conversation.

While there are many advantages to a good conversation, perhaps the best is that you can benefit from the lessons that other people have already paid the price for. Of course, that’s not all. Good conversations can also offer a new way to interpret your past experiences, discover something new, and remind us of something we already know.

A good conversation updates the software in your brain. But not all updates are the same. Learning more isn’t simply a matter of having more conversations, but rather getting more out of each conversation that you are apart of. Deep conversations with ‘people that do’ offer the richest source of learning. Conversations that skim the surface, on the other hand, only offer the illusion of learning.

With that in mind, we’d like to invite you to join us in the top conversations we had on The Knowledge Project in 2020.

It’s time to listen and learn.

  • Episode 82: Bill Ackman: Getting Back Up — Legendary activist investor, Bill Ackman talks about lessons he’s learned growing up, raising a family, what drives him forward and back up from failure, consuming information and ideas, and facing criticism.
  • Episode 94: Chamath Palihapitiya: Understanding Yourself — Founder and CEO of Social Capital, Chamath Palihapitiya sits down with Shane Parrish to chat about what it means to be an observer of the present, how to think in first principles, the psychology of successful investing, his thoughts on the best public company CEOs and much more.
  • Episode 74: Embracing Confusion with Jeff Hunter — CEO of Talentism, Jeff Hunter, teaches how to rewrite damaging narratives that hold us back, how to give and receive helpful feedback, and why confusion can be a good thing.
  • Episode 80: Developing the Leader in You with John Maxwell — Leadership expert John Maxwell breaks down the four traits every successful person possesses and how to awaken the leader within you, no matter what your job title says.
  • Episode 85: Bethany McLean: Crafting a Narrative — Best-selling author of The Smartest Guys in the Room and All the Devils are Here, Bethany McLean, discusses how to write a story, the behaviors of CEO’s, visionaries and fraudsters and so much more.

Honorary mention to Derek Sivers: Innovation Versus Imitation [The Knowledge Project Ep. #88], who was only 131 downloads away from making the list.

In other news this year, we released a TKP youtube channel with full-length videos of our conversations so you can see the guest, as well as a “Clips” channel, where we are building the world’s best repository of nugget-sized information you can use in work and life.

If you’re still curious, check out the 2019 list.

 

small habits

I’ve been trying more intensively in the last months to factor this in my day-to-day routines. With some success, actually!

This is a good read from a cool newsletter and podcast (The Knowledge Project) done by Farnam Street:

Here’s how the math works out: if you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up thirty-seven times better by the time you’re done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you’ll decline nearly down to zero. What starts as a small win or a minor setback accumulates into something much more.

Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement. The same way that money multiplies through compound interest, the effects of your habits multiply as you repeat them. They seem to make little difference on any given day and yet the impact they deliver over the months and years can be enormous. It is only when looking back two, five, or perhaps ten years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent.

market matters

from CB insights:

Opinions vary quite a bit among both operators & investors, with technology investors tending to have the most divergent (and strongest) opinions.

 

Many investors say they don’t look at TAM for new markets, because it’s often too small or undefined to even be interesting or valuable. In these cases, doing any sort of TAM analysis is actually misleading and will make you overlook opportunities. What was the TAM for something like Airbnb (couch surfing) or Amazon (books) when they started?

 

On the flip side are many investors who view the market as critical and perhaps the top dimension when evaluating a company.

One More Year

A great song to start 2021 – click here to listen…

One whole year – click to watch video clip

Do you remember we were standing here a year ago?
Our minds were racing and time went slow
If there was trouble in the world we didn’t know
If we had a care, it didn’t show
But now I worry our horizon’s bear nothing new
‘Cause I get this feeling and maybe you get it, too
We’re on a rollercoaster stuck on its loop-de-loop
‘Cause what we did one day on a whim
Has slowly become all we do
I never wanted any other way to spend our lives
I know we promised we’d be doing this ’til we die
And now I fear we might
Oh, now I fear we might
But it’s okay, I think there’s a way
Why don’t we just say one more year?
(One more year)
Not worrying if I get the right amount of sleep
(One more year)
Not caring if we do the same thing every week
(One more year)
Of living like I’m only living for me
(One more year)
Of never talking about where we’re gonna be
(One more year)
One more year
Of living like the free spirit I wanna be
We got a whole year
(One more year) Fifty-two weeks
Seven days each
(One more year) Four seasons, one reason
One way, one year
(One more year)
One year, one year
From today (From today)
From today (From today)
I never wanted any other way to spend our lives
Now one of these is gonna be the last for all time
For all time
One more year

Cloud Judgement

The Q3 Report

A very detailed and relevant method of assessing the value of SaaS public companies. Worth a read.

Link to blog post – Cloud Judgement 

“Q3 earnings season for cloud businesses is now behind us. The 61 companies that I’ll discuss here (which is not an exhaustive list, but is still comprehensive) all reported quarterly earnings sometime between October 26 – December 9. New additions to the analysis from Q2 include Snowflake, Asana, JFrog, and Sumo Logic.  In this post, I’ll take a data-driven approach in evaluating the overall group’s performance, and highlight individual standouts along the way. As a venture capitalist, I naturally cater my analysis through the lens of a private investor. Over my ~4.5 years at Redpoint Ventures, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with hundreds of entrepreneurs who are all building special companies. Through these interactions, I’ve built up mental benchmarks for metrics on which I place extra emphasis. My hope is that this analysis can provide startup entrepreneurs with a framework for how to manage their businesses around SaaS metrics (e.g., net retention and CAC payback).”

Dive in!

Q2 Report also available here

helping the small ones

Banking needs to help more small and medium sized companies (SMBs).

Fintech companies entering with solutions that are alternatives to traditional banks are more than welcome…

This a good example!

Liberis, the U.K.-based fintech that provides finance for small businesses as an alternative to a traditional bank loan or extended overdraft, has replenished its own coffers with £70 million in funding. The round is a mixture of debt and venture debt, although the company is declining to disclose the percentage split, so we can likely chalk this up as mostly debt to fund the loans Liberis issues.

Providing the financing are previous backers British Business Investments, Paragon Bank and BCI Europe, along with new partner Silicon Valley Bank  (SVB). It brings the total funding raised by Liberis  to £200 million, including more than £50 million in equity funding. “The new funds will be used to fuel company growth, launch new products and markets, and provide additional customer financing solutions,” says the fintech.

To date, 2007-founded Liberis has provided over £500 million in financing to 16,000 SMEs across Europe, the U.S. and the U.K. (the product is available in five new countries: U.S., Finland, Sweden, Czech Republic and Slovakia). However, lending has really picked up lately, with £250 million lent in the past two years alone.

Link to read more!

 

 

GPT3

AI is here to stay and improve over time

We used recently GPT2, an old version of an algorithm to automatically generate text with just a little bit of context.


Just have a look at the poems it wrote on behalf of Elon Musk using the peculiar style of Dr. Seuss!

Link to the original thing

And another cool link as well

Here’s a poem by Dr. Seuss about Elon Musk launching rockets with SpaceX, building electric cars at Tesla, selling flame throwers, dating Grimes, fighting the SEC, crushing short sellers, building brain chips to fight AI, and colonizing mars, and tweeting at all hours of day and night. Musk wants to make humans interplanetary to prevent extinction. The poem rhymes every other line with an ABAB structure. The rhyme structure is typical of Dr. Seuss nursery rhymes.

Elon Musk
By Dr. Seuss

Once there was a man
who really was a Musk.
He liked to build robots
and rocket ships and such.

He said, “I’m building a car
that’s electric and cool.
I’ll bet it outsells those
Gasoline-burning clunkers soon!”

They sell cool cars
that are electric and clean.
And then he wanted to go
even farther, you see.

The first Tesla, Roadster,
Was just the start of a bigger dream.
He said, “I’m building a plane
that’s electric and green.

That’s not all!
That man is also a Musk.
He likes electric cars,
flamethrowers, tunnels, and such.

But then he thought, “If we make
a very small, small chip,
We’ll implant it in our heads,
And then connect our minds to the Internet!”

But then, in his haste,
he got into a fight.
He had some emails that he sent
that weren’t quite polite.

The SEC said, “Musk,
your tweets are a blight.
They really could cost you your job,
if you don’t stop
all this tweeting at night.”

He replied, “Well, I do tweet
and it’s really quite neat.
and I’ll tweet in a while
and send you some sweet treats.”

But the SEC said, “Nay,
You can’t tweet anymore.
We’ll see you in court,
and you’ll pay a fine,
for the tweets that you wrote.”

Then Musk cried, “Why?
The tweets I wrote are not mean,
I don’t use all-caps
and I’m sure that my tweets are clean.”

“But your tweets can move markets
and that’s why we’re sore.
You may be a genius
and a billionaire,
but that doesn’t give you the right to be a bore!”

Then Elon Musk said,
“You’re not much fun.
And I don’t want to sue.
But I’ll tell you what I’ll do.
I’ll send my Mars Rovers
to red planet you.”

But then he thought, “But I don’t
want to start a fight.
Instead, I’ll just stick to building my cars
and launching rockets at night.”

And that’s what he did.
And the SEC said, “Fine.”
And Elon Musk said, “OK.
And the market was
A bit worried that day.
But the price of Tesla
Went up that same old way.

So you see,
Musk is just fine,
If you can ignore all the hype.
But if you trade Tesla,
The tweets might give you a fright.

But Tesla’s still going up
With each tweet and each post.
The shorts are getting so mad
That they’re going to burst!

And now Musk is building a spaceship
that can take us to Mars.
And he’ll soon be launching
some satellites to the stars.

And then we’ll really be
Interplanetary for sure.
And Musk’s tweets will continue
In space and on Earth.

Continue reading “GPT3”