FiftyThree

Steve Jobs predicted that tablet computers would become so dominant that “PCs would become like trucks” – special-purpose industrial devices. Skeptics replied that tablets were only useful for consumption and not creation and therefore couldn’t replace PCs, to which Jobs said: We are just scratching the surface on […]

Some thoughts on mobile

- People tend to lump smartphones and tablets together as “mobile”. This can be misleading. Ask people who run internet companies and they’ll tell you that user behavior on tablets is far more similar to user behavior on desktops/laptops than it is to user behavior on smartphones. That […]

Airware: An operating system for drones

I’m excited to announce that Andreessen Horowitz, along with Google Ventures, is investing $10.7M in Airware, a startup that makes operating systems for flying robots, popularly known as drones. Drones were first developed by the military. But as component prices drop and software becomes more sophisticated, drones are […]

Hardware startups

For a long time, entrepreneurs and investors shied away from hardware. This seems to be changing. As Paul Graham says, there are many reasons for this: Hardware does well on crowdfunding sites. The spread of tablets makes it possible to build new things controlled by and even incorporating […]

Shapeways: Manufacturing in the Cloud

The Internet dramatically reduced the costs of a number of creative activities. For example, publishing written work used to require a large upfront investment. As a result, publishing was controlled by corporations who acted as creative arbiters. The Internet enabled writers to bypass those corporations, leading to an […]

Technology predictions

For those of us in the prediction business, it’s sometimes useful to go back and read past predictions to try to discern patterns in what they got right and wrong. Back in the early 90s, a lot of people thought the Internet was overhyped. Here’s one example from […]

“PCs are going to be like trucks”

Steve Jobs in 2010: When we were an agrarian nation, all cars were trucks because that’s what you needed on the farms. Cars became more popular as cities rose, and things like power steering and automatic transmission became popular. PCs are going to be like trucks. They are […]

The credentials trap

I talk a lot to people who are deciding between startups and established companies. They’re usually early in their careers and have been exclusively affiliated with well-known schools and companies. As a result, they’re accustomed to praise from family and friends. Going to a startup is scary, as […]

The computing deployment phase

Technological revolutions happen in two main phases: the installation phase and the deployment phase. Here’s a chart (from this excellent book by Carlota Perez via Fred Wilson) showing the four previous technological revolutions and the first part of the current one:   Each revolution begins with a financial bubble that propels the […]