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Y Combinator

Y Combinator

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Disruptive innovation Sustaining innovations are typically innovations in technology, whereas disruptive innovations cause changes to markets. For example, the automobile was a revolutionary technological innovation, but it was not a disruptive innovation, because early automobiles were expensive luxury items that did not disrupt the market for horse-drawn vehicles. The market for transportation essentially remained intact until the debut of the lower priced Ford Model T in 1908. Ron Conway is a Silicon Valley startup's best friend The prolific angel investor has rarely met an Internet startup he didn't like. When it comes to picking the next big thing, there's a right way and a wrong way. And then there's the Conway. Ron Conway, with Coco, his rescue dog, photographed at their San Francisco home FORTUNE -- The rooftop deck of Ron Conway's San Francisco apartment building is packed with a random and seemingly incongruous assortment of tech A-listers, celebrities, and sports stars snacking on hors d'oeuvres and sipping fine wines. Conway, Silicon Valley's most prolific startup investor, has graciously opened his tony Pacific Heights pad, which has sweeping views of the Golden Gate, to let about 150 of his closest friends get a good look at the Blue Angels, the U.S.

How to Do What You Love January 2006 To do something well you have to like it. That idea is not exactly novel. We've got it down to four words: "Do what you love." 3 Ready-To-Use Cold E-mail Templates As the quarter rounds the bend, many of us are feeling the pressure of a sluggish pipeline. Here are three cold e-mail templates that might be helpful in jump-starting the top of your pipeline. We’ve tested these e-mails with a number of clients following the framework outlined in “Predictable Revenue” ( These three e-mails all ask for an internal referral – someone with whom you can have a meaningful conversation. To use the e-mails, follow these steps:

Why and how to earn to give What do we mean by earning to give? Some people have skills that are better suited to earning money than doing good directly. By ‘earning to give’ we mean that: (i) You deliberately pursue a career that is high-earning (given your options) in order to do good through your donations. AND (ii) You donate a very significant proportion of your earnings, where for someone earning more than the average in rich countries, ‘very significant’ means at least 20% of income. What’s our evidence this strategy is promising? Some people are unusually well suited to earning money. A rodmap to disruption I discussed Uberization at length in a recent article. But this is just a model of disruption, among many others. To be complete, I should at least also speak about teslaization which I believe to be more dangerous for many companies, and their relation to by-the-book disruption. These are the three states of disruption that will shape the future of your company, whether you’ll be a disruptor, or a disruptee. This quick and dirty roadmap to disruption is not intended to give with a full-fledged mapping of all disruption categories. Uberization and teslaization are interesting in the way they are polarizing risk taken by the disruptors.

Corporations Are Startups Too What is Lean Startup? “Lean Startup” is a term coined by Eric Ries while an Advisor to the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins. It’s based on the new management processes he employed while Chief Technology Officer at IMVU, one of Silicon Valley’s most successful startups. What is Customer Development? Networked Knowledge and Combinatorial Creativity by Maria Popova Why creativity is like LEGO, or what Richard Dawkins has to do with Susan Sontag and Gandhi. In May, I had the pleasure of speaking at the wonderful Creative Mornings free lecture series masterminded by my studiomate Tina of Swiss Miss fame. I spoke about Networked Knowledge and Combinatorial Creativity, something at the heart of Brain Pickings and of increasing importance as we face our present information reality. The talk is now available online — full (approximate) transcript below, enhanced with images and links to all materials referenced in the talk. These are pages from the most famous florilegium, completed by Thomas of Ireland in the 14th century.

Using One of the most difficult decisions for a startup is determining when your product is good enough to drive sustainable, scalable customer growth. Trying to scale too early can easily kill your startup. Given the emotional roller coaster of being a founder, the decision can easily be swayed by your mood on a given day., which was developed in collaboration with KISSmetrics, was designed to give you an objective metric that removes emotion from the scaling decision while also giving you other important qualitative information.

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