What defines a platform

Today, I read a great definition of what creates a platform delivered by, no other than, the “great” BillG (emphasis all mine):

Neither of [Facebook platform and connect] are platforms. They’re both kind of like these comical endeavors that do you as an Nth priority. I was in charge of Facebook platform. We trumpeted it out like it was some hot shit big deal. And I remember when we raised money from Bill Gates, 3 or 4 months after… Like our funding history was $5M, $83 M, $500M, and then $15B. When that 15B happened around literally a few months after Facebook platform and Gates said something along the lines of, “That’s a crock of shit. This isn’t a platform. A platform is when the economic value of everybody that uses it, exceeds the value of the company that creates it. Then it’s a platform.”

Via the very controversial Chamath Palihapitiya at StrictlyVC’s Insider Series.

The Best Definition of Bitcoin

Today, I listed what is, for me, the best explanation of what Bitcoin is in terms of a financial instrument. This is Robert Armstrong for FT News Briefing:

[…] let’s think of it as a call option on an equity that owns a technology that we are not sure if it’s gonna be magic or not but it just might be. And what that technology promises to do at some point down the road is to become, in a way, more like the Dollar or the Euro. We just don’t know it it’s there or not. […]

He also shows in his article for the Financial Times today that there is more than an apparent correlation between the Rolling 1m Average Daily Single Tech Stock Call Volumes:

And bitcoin:

I guess I just had an epiphany today…

Bundling and Unbundling

Bundling and Unbundling

When we were taking Netscape public, our trip through Europe ended in London. It was our last show, and we were in a big hurry to get the plane. We were at the Savoy Hotel, and the ballroom was full of all these British investment bankers. We gave our normal pitch. Peter Currie, our CFO, and I were doing it.

We got through and took all their questions, and I said, all right, one last question, ’cause we were in a hurry. And this fella, he says, you know, how do you know if Microsoft isn’t just going to bundle a browser into their product, something to that effect. And I said– really just to end the conversation– I said, well, gentlemen, there’s only two ways I know of to make money– bundling, and unbundling. And I said, we’ve got an airplane to catch, and we left.

And Peter Currie was walking out the door, he said, those people are looking at you, Barksdale, like you’re crazy. He said, what did you just say?

Jim Barksdale, Netscape CEO

The day I met Kevin Kelly

The day I met Kevin Kelly

On November 2019, I had the chance to attend the a16z Summit Summit. The agenda included a session with Kevin Kelly and Marc Andreessen on why we should optimistic about the future.

And it was during one of the Summit breaks that I bumped into Kevin Kelley. Armed with courage, I timidly introduced myself. And I thank him for Wired, for letting me dream about a better future since 1997, the year I started studying physics and get to know about the magazine. I thank him for giving me and my best friends hope. Hope in that we were not wrong, that science and technology would build a better future, that a “hippie toy” OS called Linux that made us all happy, and allowed us to experiment, was something more. That Apple was doomed and then it was not. That Google was something special. That Sun and Silicon Graphics were building hardware from another planet and then they vanished into space.

Thank you Mr Kelly. Thank you for everything.

A great time to be alive: Google claims to have achieved quantum supremacy

A couple of weeks ago, the Financial Times reported that Google had achieved quantum supremacy.

A paper written by Google’s researchers was apparently leaked on a Nasa website. The paper in question claims that the programatic advertising company run a “circuit sampling” experiment in over three minutes. The same problem would take Summit, number one classical supercomputer on the planet, around 10,000 years to compute.

Quantum computing (QC) has been one of my “darling” topics since I was introduced to it in 2000. Back them, a fully functional QC was still kind of science-fiction.

As I would like to keep learning about QC, its applications and future business model, I have decide to focus my blog on it moving forward.

Buckle up because it is going to be quite a ride!

The Carbon Footprint of Bitcoin

This is utterly mind blowing:

Bitcoin’s annual electricity consumption adds up to 45.8 TWh

The corresponding annual carbon emissions range from 22.0 to 22.9 MtCO2

This level sits between the levels produced by the nations of Jordan and Sri Lanka

Just to add more perspective, Switzerland consumes an average of 60 TWh. One day, we would look back to this nonsense and wonder whether it was really necessary.

Via Joule, both on html and pdf.