Andreessen Horowitz


 

What do disease diagnostics, language learning, and image recognition have in common? All depend on the organization of collective intelligence: data ontologies.

common data depend Diagnostics disease human language learning ontologies recognition

 

16 Ways QR Codes are Being Used in China [0.13]

Posted on Aug. 12, 2017, 5 a.m. by Andreessen Horowitz @ [source]

We’ve talked a lot about the rise of QR codes in Asia, but they may now finally be moving from being a “joke” to being more widely adopted in other places as well.

Some of the more obvious use cases for them include things like adding a WeChat friend in real life (IRL); subscribing to a WeChat official account (often representing media, stores, people, and others); paying a street vendor or at a convenience store; connecting to wi-fi in a shop; getting additional content from a magazine article; and learning more about styling or the brand from a clothing label.

China code offline online payment phone physical QR code scan store

 

It’s also the fundamental insight captured by ancient Greek historian Thucydides in his History of The Pelopennesian War. By analyzing the analogs and precedents in the historical record, what clues or insights or lessons might we draw?

Allison applied center China historian Insight policy Thucydides usual war

 

There are many trends and cycles of computing that I’ve long observed or participated in as a technologist and investor — from the evolution of SaaS and the advance of cloud computing to the commoditization of infrastructure.

But when you combine these trends, they can help us move to yet another new and better way of doing things.

application computing developer ecosystem edge GitHub growing Netlify services web

 

Online2Offline Commerce [0.12]

Posted on Aug. 8, 2017, midnight by Andreessen Horowitz @ [source]

Editor’s note: This article popularizing (and coining, for better or worse) the concept of online-to-offline (O2O) commerce by now-a16z general partner Alex Rampell was originally published exactly 7 years ago in TechCrunch.

Venture capitalists and entrepreneurs would be wise to think beyond cloning the “deal of the day” concept — and instead think about how the discovery, payment, and performance measurement of offline commerce can move online.

commerce eCommerce Groupon local model O2O offline online payment restaurant

 

In this hallway conversation, a16z partners Steven Sinofsky and Benedict Evans discuss the business tactics and strategies behind four of the largest tech companies — Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon — and how they work from an org perspective. Evans and Sinofsky discuss the rationale behind each company’s org, looking at the tactics and strategies that are best for the underlying platform, how each thinks of its varied product entities, and how their organizations are all designed differently around their core capabilities and products.

Amazon Apple companies discuss Evans Google org Sinofsky strategies tactics

 

A16z Video: S-curves in Innovation [0.00]

Posted on Aug. 5, 2017, 6 p.m. by Andreessen Horowitz @ [source]

In this animated short video, a16z Partner Benedict Evans describes “the s-curve” in the life cycle of technology innovation, and why it’s important. Technologies like the PC, internet, and mobile phone emerge, grow, and mature in waves — from “a silly idea” to something everybody has”, to a platform to build on and further evolve the next innovation.

a16z animated Benedict curve cycle describes Evans innovation partner video

 

A16z Podcast: Independents on the Board [0.27]

Posted on Aug. 4, 2017, 12:30 a.m. by Andreessen Horowitz @ [source]

But how do you get the most out of those independent directors, who are often in the minority? How do you bring in the best board member for the company, team, product — not just as another box to check on the road to IPO, but to ensure a fresh and/or missing perspective?

board bring CEO director IPO member minority partner product team

 

Modern technology owes much to the introduction of the binary digit or “bit”, first proposed by Claude Shannon in “A Mathematical Theory of Communication”, a paper published in 1948. The bit would go on to transform analog to digital, making Shannon the father of the information age.

Binary bit Claude digit introduction modern owes play proposed Shannon

 

The history of computers is often told as a history of objects, from the abacus to the Babbage engine up through the code-breaking machines of World War II. In fact, it is better understood as a history of ideas, mainly ideas that emerged from mathematical logic, an obscure and cult-like discipline that first developed in the 19th century.

computer design Frege language logic logical machine mathematics Shannon Turing

 

So what are the key factors in determining whether something is truly transformative — like the phone, the internet — or IS just a toy?

All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

determining factors internet key phone Property respective toy trademarks transformative

 

Even among experts, the terms “machine learning” and “AI” can mean very different things. But what is machine learning, really?

AI artificial experts intelligence learning machine Property terms things trademarks

 

He takes us from the beginning of the credit card revolution (including the credit card’s hometown of Fresno, California) to how both information and money travel through the five parties involved in every credit card transaction… which now drive our daily lives.

All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Beginning California card credit Fresno hometown including money revolution takes

 

Antibiotics work by killing bacteria, stopping infections from running rampant. Antivirals work by killing viral replication.

aging BioAge biomarker blood disease drug identify mice stopping young

 

How to Tell the Truth [0.10]

Posted on July 27, 2017, 7 p.m. by Andreessen Horowitz @ [source]

Are you an honest person? I’ll bet that you answered “yes.” If you did, who else do you know that’s completely honest?

CEO Civil War communication employees Gettysburg honest layoff Telling trust truth

 

There are the things that you carefully plan when it comes to an IPO — the who (the bankers, the desired institutional investors); the what (the pricing, the allocations); and the when (are we ready? But then there are the things that you don’t plan: like the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression… as happened before the OpenTable IPO.

allocations banker head IPO Jordan OpenTable plan pricing then things

 

Here’s what we know: There’s a pair (father and son) of Russian scientists trying to resurrect (or rather, “rewild”) an Ice Age (aka Pleistocene era) biome (grassland) complete with (gene edited, lab-grown) woolly mammoths (derived from elephants).

Here’s what we don’t know: How many genes will it take (with science doing the “sculpting” and nature doing the “polishing”)?

elephants father gene improbably pair Pleistocene podcast Russian scientists son

 

In the age of virality, what does it actually mean to be popular? When does popularity — or good product design, for that matter — cross over from desire and engagement… to addiction?

age cross design desire engagement matter popular popularity product virality

 

In my experience, bad salespeople talk too much and LISTEN too little.

Closed assumptions are bad for business, and they’re bad for the pitch.

business customers data Listen listening pitch product questions sale sales rep

 

This episode of the a16z Podcast takes us on a quick tour through the themes of economics/historian/journalist Marc Levinson‘s books — from An Extraordinary Time, on the end of the postwar boom and the return of the ordinary economy; to The Great A&P, on retail and the struggle for small business in America; all the way through to The Box, on how the shipping container made the world smaller and the world economy bigger. Maybe it’s just a matter of managing our expectations — or resetting our clock for when the new normal begins… and ends.

a16z economy episode improvement Levinson matter podcast quick retail takes