stealth mode startup

25 results back to index

pages: 257 words: 64,973

Intrusion Detection With Snort, Apache, Mysql, Php, and Acid by Rafeeq Ur Rehman


database schema, stealth mode startup, web application, x509 certificate

Without this option in the configure script, SAMBA services can't be used with Snort. 2.9 Running Snort in Stealth Mode Sometimes you may want to run Snort in stealth mode. In stealth mode, other hosts are not able to detect the presence of the Snort machine. In other words, the Snort machine is not visible to intruders or other people. There are multiple ways to run Snort in stealth mode. One of these methods is to run Snort on a network interface where no IP address is assigned. Running Snort on a network interface without an IP address is feasible in the following two cases: A stand-alone Snort sensor with only one network adapter. A Snort sensor with two network adapters: one to access the sensor from an isolated network and the other one connected to the public network and running in stealth mode. This arrangement is shown in Figure 2-3 where network interface eth1 is connected to a private isolated network and eth0 is connected to a public network.

This arrangement is shown in Figure 2-3 where network interface eth1 is connected to a private isolated network and eth0 is connected to a public network. Figure 2-3. Running Snort in stealth mode on a system with two network adapters. When you want to access the sensor itself, you go through network interface eth1 which has an IP address configured to it. The management workstation shown in the figure may be used to connect to the sensor either to collect data or to log information to a centralized database. If many sensors are present in an organization, all of these are connected to this isolated network so that they can log information to the central database running on the management workstation or to some other database server connected to this isolated network. No IP address is configured on network interface eth0 which has connectivity to the Internet. Interface eth0 remains in stealth mode but can still listen to the network traffic from this side of the network.

Installing Snort and Getting Started Section 2.1. Snort Installation Scenarios Section 2.2. Installing Snort Section 2.3. Running Snort on Multiple Network Interfaces Section 2.4. Snort Command Line Options Section 2.5. Step-By-Step Procedure to Compile and Install Snort From Source Code Section 2.6. Location of Snort Files Section 2.7. Snort Modes Section 2.8. Snort Alert Modes Section 2.9. Running Snort in Stealth Mode Section 2.10. References Chapter 3. Working with Snort Rules Section 3.1. TCP/IP Network Layers Section 3.2. The First Bad Rule Section 3.3. CIDR Section 3.4. Structure of a Rule Section 3.5. Rule Headers Section 3.6. Rule Options Section 3.7. The Snort Configuration File Section 3.8. Order of Rules Based upon Action Section 3.9. Automatically Updating Snort Rules Section 3.10.


pages: 278 words: 83,468

The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries


3D printing, barriers to entry, call centre, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, continuous integration, corporate governance, experimental subject, Frederick Winslow Taylor, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, Network effects, payday loans, Peter Thiel,, Ponzi scheme, pull request, risk tolerance, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, skunkworks, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, Toyota Production System, transaction costs

Their challenge lies in prioritization and execution, and it is those challenges that give a startup hope of surviving.10 If a competitor can outexecute a startup once the idea is known, the startup is doomed anyway. The reason to build a new team to pursue an idea is that you believe you can accelerate through the Build-Measure-Learn feedback loop faster than anyone else can. If that’s true, it makes no difference what the competition knows. If it’s not true, a startup has much bigger problems, and secrecy won’t fix them. Sooner or later, a successful startup will face competition from fast followers. A head start is rarely large enough to matter, and time spent in stealth mode—away from customers—is unlikely to provide a head start. The only way to win is to learn faster than anyone else. Many startups plan to invest in building a great brand, and an MVP can seem like a dangerous branding risk.

Of course, as we’ll see, such delays have the unfortunate effect of increasing the amount of wasted work, decreasing essential feedback, and dramatically increasing the risk that a startup will build something nobody wants. However, releasing a product and hoping for the best is not a good plan either, because this incentive is real. When we launched IMVU, we were ignorant of this problem. Our earliest investors and advisers thought it was quaint that we had a $300-per-month revenue plan at first. But after several months with our revenue hovering around $500 per month, some began to lose faith, as did some of our advisers, employees, and even spouses. In fact, at one point, some investors were seriously recommending that we pull the product out of the market and return to stealth mode. Fortunately, as we pivoted and experimented, incorporating what we learned into our product development and marketing efforts, our numbers started to improve.

We routinely green-light new projects more on the basis of intuition than facts. As we’ve seen throughout this book, that is not the root cause of the problem. All innovation begins with vision. It’s what happens next that is critical. As we’ve seen, too many innovation teams engage in success theater, selectively finding data that support their vision rather than exposing the elements of the vision to true experiments, or, even worse, staying in stealth mode to create a data-free zone for unlimited “experimentation” that is devoid of customer feedback or external accountability of any kind. Anytime a team attempts to demonstrate cause and effect by placing highlights on a graph of gross metrics, it is engaging in pseudoscience. How do we know that the proposed cause and effect is true? Anytime a team attempts to justify its failures by resorting to learning as an excuse, it is engaged in pseudoscience as well.


pages: 166 words: 49,639

Start It Up: Why Running Your Own Business Is Easier Than You Think by Luke Johnson


Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, collapse of Lehman Brothers, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, Grace Hopper, happiness index / gross national happiness, high net worth, James Dyson, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, mittelstand, Network effects, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, patent troll, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Silicon Valley, software patent, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, traveling salesman, tulip mania

I prefer to buy businesses that don’t need too much meddling – but other investors make a virtue of interfering. The disadvantages of moonlighting are also clear: if you get caught by your boss misusing resources or getting distracted from the day job, there will be trouble; and a business run in your spare time will never receive the focus and devotion it needs to be truly successful. If you are ambitious, the part-time option should only ever be temporary. To avoid being forever in stealth mode, you should have a ‘boat-burning’ target: a clearly defined point at which you chuck the day job and dive in. Don’t tweak your fledgling business until it seems like a sure-fire bet: it never will be. It’s very easy to tinker away on the margins for ever but, as Steve Jobs once said to a perfectionist engineer at Apple, ‘real artists ship’. The online revolution has made moonlighting easier than ever.

Too many people fear failure more than they want to win. Of course, your start-up might prove a vain attempt at the prize, so you may lose money, time and pride. But you know what? No one really notices or cares. There is never a perfect time to begin the journey. But if you have ambition and are willing to apply the effort, stop making excuses – get out there and start battling. Start-ups with a dash of going concern Which is the best bet – starting a business or buying one? That is the first great question confronting the budding entrepreneur. It’s a pity so few actually ask it of themselves. The world is in love with the romance of start-ups. The nineties dotcom boom resulted in obsessive coverage of start-ups, particularly technology start-ups, such that these days many younger entrepreneurs see no other way into business than via a newly invented gadget or service.

Venture capitalists: on another wavelength Thanks to the nineties dotcom boom and the business media’s love of start-ups, almost everyone now has some idea about venture capital. Sadly, that idea usually tends to be wrong. Too many entrepreneurs think formal venture capital is the place to look for start-up funding, when in reality venture capitalists tend to focus on making very large bets in industries like high technology and biotech. In short, VC money is probably not for you if you’re just starting out. Operations in mainstream sectors like retailing and restaurants almost invariably secure backing not from VCs but from angel investors, high-net-worth individuals or the founder’s savings. Funding start-ups and new technology is exceedingly risky, but it has enabled the development of many of the most important companies of the last fifty years, including DEC, Intel, FedEx, Cisco and Google.


pages: 361 words: 76,849

The Year Without Pants: and the Future of Work by Scott Berkun


barriers to entry, blue-collar work, Broken windows theory,, Firefox, future of work, Google Hangouts, Jane Jacobs, job satisfaction, Lean Startup, lone genius, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, remote working, Results Only Work Environment, Richard Stallman, Seaside, Florida, side project, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the map is not the territory, Tony Hsieh, trade route

The only sign outside, hung fifteen feet off the ground, identified the building as “Pier 38: Maritime Recreational Center” and listed dock and boat rental as the primary activities inside, but there were no instructions on where to go to find them. Directly to the left and right of the car path were the only visible doors, made of rusted steel with no windows; one door had no outward-facing handle. Many start-ups talk about being in stealth mode, but for the dozens of tech companies residing inside Pier 38, it was a literal fact. Dogpatch Labs, which hosted Instagram and Formspring, was on the first floor. Polaris Partners, True Ventures, 99designs, and dozens of other start-up and start-up-related organizations were some of the other tenants. None of these companies was particularly secretive, however; in fact, many were happy to get as much attention as possible, but the building was foreboding enough that if you didn't know exactly where you were going, you'd never find them.

—Om Malik, founder, GigaOM “Some say the world of work is changing, but they're wrong. The world has already changed! Read The Year Without Pants to catch up.” —Chris Guillebeau, author, New York Times bestseller The $100 Startup “You'll be surprised, shocked, delighted, thrilled, and inspired by how gets work done. I was!” —Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president, Microsoft “Most talk of the future of work is just speculation, but Berkun has actually worked there. The Year Without Pants is a brilliant, honest, and funny insider's story of life at a great company.” —Eric Ries, author, New York Times bestseller The Lean Startup “ has discovered a better way to work, and The Year Without Pants allows the reader to learn from the organization's fun and entertaining story.” —Tony Hsieh, author, New York Times bestseller Delivering Happiness, and CEO,, Inc.

WordPress, and, didn't yet have a reputation for being buggy or unreliable. Changing to a different system would challenge the culture, and without a specific problem to justify the change, I didn't see the point in trying. I tried to remember Mullenweg's attitude of letting that which did not matter, not matter. Maybe with the right culture and talent, you didn't need some of the fundamental things experts claim you need. Start-up companies get away with it all the time, but was not a start-up anymore. On Team Social we tracked issues in the simplest way possible: we made lists. As programmers fixed them, we crossed them off. It was easy to see how many were fixed and how many were left, or to add comments to a particular issue. Where it failed was triage: all bugs tended to be treated equally. Important issues, trivial issues, challenging bugs, and easy fixes were all listed in the same way.


pages: 256 words: 15,765

The New Elite: Inside the Minds of the Truly Wealthy by Dr. Jim Taylor


British Empire, call centre, dark matter, Donald Trump, estate planning, full employment, glass ceiling, income inequality, Jeff Bezos, Louis Pasteur, Maui Hawaii, McMansion, means of production, passive income, performance metric, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, Ronald Reagan, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Thorstein Veblen, trickle-down economics, women in the workforce

He and his team burned the midnight oil for months, and submitted what would eventually become the winning bid. What was the reward for his exhausting role in boosting company revenue by several billion? He and each member of his team got a plaque and a check for $250. The team members looked at one another, and concluded they needed to chart a different path in life. They started their own company, quietly renting an office next to their current employer, and they operated in stealth mode while maintaining their day jobs. They developed new technologies for Internet routers and servers, and their timing couldn’t have been better—it was the early 1990s, the Internet was just taking off, and soon their growing business allowed them to leave the security of their day jobs. Within a few years, they were able to sell the company to a large technology provider for over $70 million, mostly in stock options that proceeded to multiply in value many times over the ensuing years.

The United Nations estimates there are over 60,000 multinational corpo- Globizens 163 rations, a figure that has doubled over the past two decades, while the average size of multinationals has dropped dramatically.1 Globalization isn’t just about moving work to where it can be done at the lowest cost; increasingly, it is about getting the best people, bigger teams, and leveraging time-zone differences to enable work to continue 24/7. And it is often about growth opportunities. Israeli high-tech start-ups, for example, are often born global, or go global very quickly, because the markets in their home country are small. Indeed, this model is sometimes called ‘‘Israeli Internationalization,’’ and it is increasingly being applied in other small countries.2 Indeed, whereas historically companies started locally and grew globally, today some of the hottest buzzwords in entrepreneurial circles are global start-ups, born global, and micro-multinationals. The bottom line for our purposes is that today’s wealthy are far more likely to have an intricate network of international connections, relative to the generations of wealthy individuals who came before them.

We’ve seen how their career paths as entrepreneurs were likely to be international in some form; with two-thirds still actively on the front lines of their businesses, those global connections with partners and vendors are likely continuing. Moreover, as fully formed members of the wealth class, these people have international business connections that are strengthened in two additional ways. First, many are involved in seeding start-ups, either through private equity funds or more directly through angel investing, and such investments increasingly mean evaluating multinational teams of executives. Second, the wealthy are heavily involved as members of corporate boards, with 40 percent serving on at least one corporate board of directors, and most of that 40 percent serving on more than one board. Like start-ups, the boards of major corporations are becoming increasingly international in scope. For example, two-thirds of the thirty companies constituting the Dow Jones Industrial Average have at least one international board member; over 20 percent of the board members are non-Americans at Dow component companies Alcoa, Citigroup, General Electric, IBM, and Walt Disney.3 International board membership is often even stronger outside of the United States, with companies in developing countries increasingly looking 164 The New Elite for board members from outside of their home country, as this fosters connections that fuel business growth, and makes potential investors more confident that the company is stable and well managed.4 All of these global business relationships deepen the ethic of global citizenship.


pages: 294 words: 81,292

Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era by James Barrat


3D printing, AI winter, Amazon Web Services, artificial general intelligence, Automated Insights, Bernie Madoff, Bill Joy: nanobots, brain emulation, cellular automata, cloud computing, cognitive bias, computer vision, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Danny Hillis, data acquisition, don't be evil, Extropian, finite state, Flash crash, friendly AI, friendly fire, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Isaac Newton, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, Loebner Prize, lone genius, mutually assured destruction, natural language processing, Nicholas Carr, optical character recognition, PageRank, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, prisoner's dilemma, Ray Kurzweil, Rodney Brooks, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, Skype, smart grid, speech recognition, statistical model, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, Stuxnet, superintelligent machines, technological singularity, The Coming Technological Singularity, traveling salesman, Turing machine, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, zero day

I’d heard about so-called stealth companies that are privately held, hire secretly, never issue press releases or otherwise reveal what they’re up to. In AI, the only reason for a company to be stealthy is if they’ve had some powerful insight, and they don’t want to reward competitors with information about what that their breakthrough is. By definition, stealth companies are hard to discover, though rumors abound. PayPal founder Peter Thiel funds three stealth companies devoted to AI. Companies in “stealth mode” however, are different and more common. These companies seek funding and even publicity, but don’t reveal their plans. Peter Voss, an AI innovator known for developing voice-recognition technology, pursues AGI with his company, Adaptive AI, Inc. He has gone on record saying AGI can be achieved within ten years. But he won’t say how. * * * Stealth companies come with another complication. A small, motivated company could exist within a larger company with a big public presence.

Parts of its architecture are up and running, and busily analyzing biological data and solving power grid problems, for a fee. Profits go back into research-and-development for OpenCog. Numenta, Inc., brainchild of Jeff Hawkins, the creator of the Palm Pilot and Treo, earns its living by working inside electrical power supplies to anticipate failures. For about a decade, Peter Voss developed his AGI company, Adaptive AI, in “stealth” mode, widely lecturing about AGI but not revealing how he planned to tackle it. Then in 2007 he launched Smart Action, a company that uses Adaptive AI’s technology to empower Virtual Agents. They are customer-service telephone chatbots that ace NLP skills to engage customers in nuanced purchase-related exchanges. The University of Memphis’ LIDA (Learning Intelligent Distributed Agent) probably doesn’t have to worry about where its next upgrade is coming from.

First there are books like Kurzweil’s The Singularity Is Near. Their goal is to lay the theoretical groundwork for a supremely positive future. If a bad thing happened there, you would never hear about it over optimism’s merry din. Jeff Stibel’s Wired for Thought represents the second tack. It looks at the technological future through the lens of business. Stibel persuasively argues that the Internet is an increasingly well-connected brain, and Web start-ups should take this into account. Books like Stibel’s try to teach entrepreneurs how to dip a net between Internet trends and consumers, and seine off buckets full of cash. Most technology theorists and authors are missing the less rosy, third perspective, and this book aims to make up for it. The argument is that the endgame for first creating smart machines, then smarter-than-human machines, is not their integration into our lives, but their conquest of us.


pages: 292 words: 85,151

Exponential Organizations: Why New Organizations Are Ten Times Better, Faster, and Cheaper Than Yours (And What to Do About It) by Salim Ismail, Yuri van Geest


23andMe, 3D printing, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, bioinformatics, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, Burning Man, business intelligence, business process, call centre, chief data officer, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive bias, collaborative consumption, collaborative economy, corporate social responsibility, cross-subsidies, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, dark matter, Dean Kamen, dematerialisation, discounted cash flows, distributed ledger, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk,, ethereum blockchain, Galaxy Zoo, game design, Google Glasses, Google Hangouts, Google X / Alphabet X, gravity well, hiring and firing, Hyperloop, industrial robot, Innovator's Dilemma, Internet of things, Iridium satellite, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, Law of Accelerating Returns, Lean Startup, life extension, loose coupling, loss aversion, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, market design, means of production, minimum viable product, natural language processing, Netflix Prize, Network effects, new economy, Oculus Rift, offshore financial centre, p-value, PageRank, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Thiel, prediction markets, profit motive, publish or perish, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Ronald Coase, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, smart contracts, Snapchat, social software, software is eating the world, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, subscription business, supply-chain management, TaskRabbit, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tony Hsieh, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban planning, WikiLeaks, winner-take-all economy, X Prize, Y Combinator

Coca-Cola also has become a founding member of Singularity University Labs, where disruptive teams can, away from the mother ship [Autonomy, Leveraged Assets], work with startups on next-generation products and services. And to further ensure that new ideas can evolve away from existing legacy thinking, Coca-Cola is creating new companies that are completely separate from current cash-cow businesses. These new companies enjoy full autonomy from Coke’s existing tax, legal, finance and HR systems [Autonomy, Dashboards]. That said, there is one notable departure for Coca-Cola relative to the ExO philosophy: the transparency of its disruptive innovation. It is our thesis that disruptive innovation efforts work best when they operate in stealth mode, divorced from the rest of the company, so as to avoid triggering an organizational immune system response. Instead, Coca-Cola, taking the long view, has created transparent disruption innovation teams with the avowed goal of openly changing the culture of the larger company.

One caveat, however: This is not meant to be an exhaustive startup manual—that book remains to be written. Rather, we’ll discuss the elements relevant to building an ExO that is leveraged by information and is highly scalable, either as a pure startup or from within an existing enterprise. A quick but relevant side note here: We strongly recommend reading The Lean Startup by Eric Ries as an accompaniment to this chapter, since we’ll be referring to it frequently. In fact, the best definition we’ve found for a startup comes from Ries: “A startup is a human institution designed to deliver a new product or service under conditions of extreme uncertainty.” A second book we recommend is Peter Thiel and Blake Masters’ recent publication, Zero to One: Notes on Startups or How to Build the Future. This is perhaps the best time in the history of business to build a new enterprise.

This technique is popularly known as the Lean Startup movement, which was created by Eric Ries and Steve Blank and is based on Ries’s book of the same name. The Lean Startup philosophy (also known as the Lean Launchpad) is in turn based upon Toyota’s “lean manufacturing” principles, first established a half-century ago, in which the elimination of wasteful processes is paramount. (Sample principle: “Eliminate all expenses with any goal other than the creation of value for the end customer.”) The Lean Startup concept was also given impetus by Steve Blank’s book, The Four Steps to the Epiphany, which focuses on customer development. (Sample concept: “We don’t know what the customer wants until assumptions are validated.”) The most important message of the Lean Startup movement is to “Fail fast and fail often, while eliminating waste.”


pages: 484 words: 104,873

Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future by Martin Ford


3D printing, additive manufacturing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, AI winter, algorithmic trading, Amazon Mechanical Turk, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, banking crisis, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, Bernie Madoff, Bill Joy: nanobots, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Chris Urmson, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, computer age, debt deflation, deskilling, diversified portfolio, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, financial innovation, Flash crash, Fractional reserve banking, Freestyle chess, full employment, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, High speed trading, income inequality, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, informal economy, iterative process, Jaron Lanier, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Khan Academy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, labour mobility, liquidity trap, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, Lyft, manufacturing employment, McJob, moral hazard, Narrative Science, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, optical character recognition, passive income, performance metric, Peter Thiel, Plutocrats, plutocrats, post scarcity, precision agriculture, price mechanism, Ray Kurzweil, rent control, rent-seeking, reshoring, RFID, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Rodney Brooks, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, single-payer health, software is eating the world, sovereign wealth fund, speech recognition, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, strong AI, Stuxnet, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Coming Technological Singularity, Thomas L Friedman, too big to fail, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, Vernor Vinge, very high income, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce

Indeed, speed—in some cases measured in millionths or even billionths of a second—is so critical to algorithmic trading success that Wall Street firms have collectively invested billions of dollars to build computing facilities and communications paths designed to produce tiny speed advantages. In 2009, for example, a company called Spread Networks spent as much as $200 million to lay down a new fiber-optic cable link stretching 825 miles in a straight line from Chicago to New York. The company operated in stealth mode so as not to alert the competition even as it blasted its way through the Allegheny Mountains. When the new fiber-optic path came online, it offered a speed advantage of perhaps three or four thousandths of a second compared with existing communications routes. That was enough to allow any algorithmic trading systems employing the new route to effectively dominate their competition. Wall Street firms, faced with algorithmic decimation, lined up to lease bandwidth—reportedly at a cost as much as ten times that of the original, slower cable.

It peers at the boxes, adjusts its gaze slightly, ponders some more, and then finally lunges forward and grapples a box from the top of the pile.* The sluggishness, however, results almost entirely from the staggering complexity of the computation required to perform this seemingly simple task. If there is one thing the history of information technology teaches, it is that this robot is going to very soon get a major speed upgrade. Indeed, engineers at Industrial Perception, Inc., the Silicon Valley start-up company that designed and built the robot, believe the machine will ultimately be able to move a box every second. That compares with a human worker’s maximum rate of a box roughly every six seconds.1 Needless to say, the robot can work continuously; it will never get tired or suffer a back injury—and it will certainly never file a worker’s compensation claim. Industrial Perception’s robot is remarkable because its capability sits at the nexus of visual perception, spatial computation, and dexterity.

A variety of educational robots focused on everything from encouraging technical creativity to assisting children with autism or learning disabilities. At the Rethink Robotics booth, Baxter had received Halloween training and was grasping small boxes of candy and then dropping them into pumpkin-shaped trick-or-treat buckets. There were also companies marketing components like motors, sensors, vision systems, electronic controllers, and the specialized software used to construct robots. Silicon Valley start-up Grabit Inc. demonstrated an innovative electroadhesion-powered gripper that allows robots to pick up, carry, and place nearly anything simply by employing a controlled electrostatic charge. To round things out, a global law firm with a specialized robotics practice was on hand to help employers navigate the complexities of labor, employment, and safety regulations when robots are brought in to replace, or work in close proximity to, people.


Industry 4.0: The Industrial Internet of Things by Alasdair Gilchrist


3D printing, additive manufacturing, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, business intelligence, business process, chief data officer, cloud computing, connected car, cyber-physical system, deindustrialization, fault tolerance, global value chain, Google Glasses, hiring and firing, industrial robot, inflight wifi, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, inventory management, job automation, low skilled workers, millennium bug, pattern recognition, platform as a service, pre–internet, race to the bottom, RFID, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, smart transportation, software as a service, stealth mode startup, supply-chain management, trade route, web application, WebRTC, WebSocket, Y2K

The system can also use multi-cast queries to send commands to endnodes and have them respond only if they are a group member; for instance, if they have a temperature sensor or meet a specific operational condition such as endnodes that have a temperature sensor and have a reading greater than 10c and less than 13c. Industry 4.0 Commands and responses are encrypted using AES-128 encryption but there is also a “stealth mode” whereby endnodes respond only to pre-authenticated devices. Name of Standard Dash7 Alliance Protocol 1.0 Frequency band 433, 868, 915MHz ISM/SRD Channel width 25KHz or 200KHz Range 0 – 5 km Endnode transmit power Depending on FCC/ETSI regulations Packet size 256 bytes max/packet Uplink data rate 9.6kb/s, 55.55 kbps, or 166.667 kb/s Downlink data rate 9.6 kb/s, 55.55 kbps, or 166.667 kb/s Devices per access point N/A (connectionless communication) Topology node-to-node, star, tree Endnode roaming allowed Yes Ingénue RPMA The RPMA LP-WAN provides developers with transceiver modules that can connect to a network of access points, which form a global network that Ingénue and its partners are constructing.

In essence, cloud computing is still following Amazon’s early pay-as-you-use formula, which makes cloud computing financially attractive to SMEs (small to medium enterprises), as the costs of running a data center and dedicated infrastructure both IT and networks can be crippling. Consequently, many cash-strapped businesses, for example start-ups, elected to move their development and application platforms to the cloud, as they only paid for the resources they used. When these start-ups became successful, and there were a few hugely successful companies, they remained on the cloud due to the same financial benefits—no vast capital and operational expenditure to build and run their own data centers—but also because the cloud offered much more. 47 48 Chapter 3 |TheTechnical and Business Innovators of the Industrial Internet In order to understand why the cloud is so attractive to business, look at the major cloud providers’ business model.

There are several problems here—one is the physical layer technology that is adopted, for example wired or wireless. Wireless technology—radio communications—must meet a required standard for the deployment. After all, it is of little use producing a startup product that uses a non-standard interface in the targeted industry. This is where standards are so important. Now standards are hugely important, but very dry, so we will only cover the main industry standards that any industry specific product should comply with. An example of this is that a startup developing a great product must adhere to existing relevant industrial standards or it will never be commercially accepted. Industry decision-makers are very risk averse and are unlikely to adopt a solution that does not meet existing industry standards.


pages: 356 words: 105,533

Dark Pools: The Rise of the Machine Traders and the Rigging of the U.S. Stock Market by Scott Patterson


algorithmic trading, automated trading system, banking crisis, bash_history, Bernie Madoff, butterfly effect, buttonwood tree, cloud computing, collapse of Lehman Brothers, Donald Trump, Flash crash, Francisco Pizarro, Gordon Gekko, Hibernia Atlantic: Project Express, High speed trading, Joseph Schumpeter, latency arbitrage, Long Term Capital Management, Mark Zuckerberg, market design, market microstructure, pattern recognition,, Ponzi scheme, popular electronics, prediction markets, quantitative hedge fund, Ray Kurzweil, Renaissance Technologies, Sergey Aleynikov, Small Order Execution System, South China Sea, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, stealth mode startup, stochastic process, transaction costs, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!

If the price moves up too quickly, such as ½ percent in two minutes, stop buying. If the broader market falls quickly, stop buying. Some algos were encoded with a randomizer, causing them to shift erratically between strategies, in order to hide the patterns of their moves. They were like hunted prey attempting to cover up their tracks through feints and dodges. With no order for the hunter-seeker radars to detect, it was easier to operate in stealth mode. But the hunter-seekers adapted to the new stealth techniques and watched for them, anticipating every move—even the seemingly random ones. Every trade left a signal, a trail of bread crumbs. The hunter-seekers were experts at sniffing them out. The mindless algos had evolved into dangerous beasts of prey. They were getting smart. They had names such as Shark, Guerilla, Stealth, Thor, Sniper.

He called it the Batmobile. Bodek quickly began scouring Wall Street for top talent, and he found eager takers among the trading desks of the most elite banks and hedge funds in the country. Word got around that Bodek and TW were building the Next Next Thing in Stamford, a cutting-edge trading operation that reputations would be built on. They turned down dozens of résumés from programmers and traders that most startups would have killed for. They moved fast. In November 2007, Trading Machines launched with $20 million. While small by some standards, it was deemed substantial for a high-speed trading outfit—and spoke to the economics of the business. Fast traders make money by picking up pennies and nickels on thousands of trades a day. Because they move in and out of positions so rapidly, they can recycle a small amount of cash over and over again.

Maschler had recently left a nationwide brokerage based in New-ark, New Jersey, called First Jersey Securities. A notorious penny-stock pump-and-dump outfit, First Jersey was run by an evil-genius scam artist named Robert Brennan. Brennan had gained fame in the 1980s for a string of ads in which he zipped around in a Sikorsky helicopter, passing American landmarks such as the Grand Coulee Dam while espousing the virtues of First Jersey’s ability to fund small startups. The ads, which invited viewers to “Come Grow With Us,” appeared during nightly news shows and even the Super Bowl. Maschler quickly rose within the ranks at First Jersey and by the mid-1980s was running its Jersey City office. When allegations of ties to organized crime and stock scams threatened to bring First Jersey down in 1986, however, Maschler quickly jumped ship. He was pulling in some cash from a sports-betting outfit he ran on the side, and the last thing he wanted was extra scrutiny from the law.


pages: 387 words: 112,868

Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money by Nathaniel Popper


4chan, Airbnb, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, banking crisis, bitcoin, blockchain, Burning Man, capital controls, Colonization of Mars, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Extropian, fiat currency, Fractional reserve banking, Jeff Bezos, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, life extension, litecoin, lone genius, M-Pesa, Mark Zuckerberg, Occupy movement, peer-to-peer lending, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, price stability, Satoshi Nakamoto, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, Skype, slashdot, smart contracts, Startup school, stealth mode startup, the payments system, transaction costs, tulip mania, WikiLeaks

Then there were smaller eyebrow-raising details, like Satoshi Nakamoto’s initials being a transposition of Nick Szabo’s. Nick had made a brief statement, by e-mail, to deny that he was Satoshi, but that didn’t quiet the speculation. At Morehead’s gathering, people spoke in hushed tones about things they’d overheard Nick saying. Nick showed up at Morehead’s private gathering because a few months earlier he had quietly joined a cryptocurrency startup that was operating in stealth mode. The startup, Vaurum, was based a few blocks from Wences’s office in Palo Alto and focused on the task of matching up big holders of Bitcoin wanting to buy and sell. Nick, though, had joined Vaurum to do more sophisticated work on so-called smart contracts, which would allow people to record their ownership of a house or car into the blockchain, and transfer that ownership with the use of a private key, something Nick had been thinking about for over a decade.

In addition to the tens of millions of dollars Wences had earned from selling past startups, he had been surprised to discover that he also had a knack for picking winning investments in his friends’ companies. But he had recently been hitting up against failure for the first time. Lemon, his current startup, had grown out of the decline of his previous startup, Bling Nation, and many of Wences’s friends wondered whether Lemon was the result of the kind of passion necessary to succeed in Silicon Valley or was just Wences’s attempt to prove that the failure of Bling Nation had been an anomaly. There were already signs that Lemon was not getting the kind of pickup that Wences had imagined. And, as with all startups, it required more time from its chief executive than any one person had in a day. This was Wences’s twelfth startup, depending on how you counted, and his wife once again felt like a single mother for their three children.

It was not surprising that Erik, with ambitions like these, had a turbulent journey since his days of unemployment in New Hampshire. After moving to New York, he had helped convince the Winklevoss twins, Tyler and Cameron, of Facebook fame, to put almost a million dollars into a startup he helped create, called BitInstant. But that relationship ended with a knock-down, drag-out fight, after which Erik resigned from the company and moved to Panama with his girlfriend. More recently, Erik had been spending many of his days in his office in Panama, dealing with investigators from the US Securities and Exchange Commission—one of the top financial regulatory agencies—who were questioning a deal in which he’d sold stock in one of his startups for Bitcoins. The stock had ended up providing his investors with big returns. And the regulators, by Erik’s assessment, didn’t seem to even understand the technology.


pages: 413 words: 119,587

Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots by John Markoff


A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, AI winter, airport security, Apple II, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, Bill Duvall, bioinformatics, Brewster Kahle, Burning Man, call centre, cellular automata, Chris Urmson, Claude Shannon: information theory, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer age, computer vision, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, DARPA: Urban Challenge, data acquisition, Dean Kamen, deskilling, don't be evil, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, From Mathematics to the Technologies of Life and Death, future of work, Galaxy Zoo, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, haute couture, hive mind, hypertext link, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Internet of things, invention of the wheel, Jacques de Vaucanson, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Conway, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, loose coupling, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, medical residency, Menlo Park, Mother of all demos, natural language processing, new economy, Norbert Wiener, PageRank, pattern recognition, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Robert Gordon, Rodney Brooks, Sand Hill Road, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, semantic web, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Singularitarianism, skunkworks, Skype, social software, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, strong AI, superintelligent machines, technological singularity, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tenerife airport disaster, The Coming Technological Singularity, the medium is the message, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Catalog, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

When word circulated that the firm had been acquired, possibly for more than $200 million, it sent shock waves up and down Sand Hill Road and within the burgeoning “app economy” that the iPhone had spawned. After Apple acquired Siri, the program was immediately pulled from the App Store, the iPhone service through which programs were screened and sold, and the small team of programmers who had designed Siri vanished back into “stealth mode” inside the Cupertino campus. The larger implications of the acquisition weren’t immediately obvious to many in the Valley, but as one of his last acts as the leader of Apple, Steve Jobs had paved the way for yet another dramatic shift in the way humans would interact with computers. He had come down squarely on the side of those who placed humans in control of their computing systems. Jobs had made a vital earlier contribution to the computing world by championing the graphical desktop computing approach as a more powerful way to operate a PC.

It was military-led spending, but it wasn’t entirely about military applications. Corporate America was toying with the idea of expert systems. Ultimately the boom would lead to forty start-up companies and U.S. sales of AI-related hardware and software of $425 million in 1986. As an academic, Kaplan lasted just two years at Stanford. He received two offers to join start-ups at the same time, both in the AI world. Ed Feigenbaum, who had decided that the Stanford computer scientists should get paid for what they were already doing academically, was assembling one of the start-ups, Teknowledge. The new company would rapidly become the Cadillac of expert system consulting, also developing custom products. The other start-up was called Symantec. Decades later it would become a giant computer security firm, but at the outset Symantec began with an AI database program that overlapped with Kaplan’s technical expertise.

The company’s PageRank search algorithm exploited human preferences to rank Internet search query results. Through Reid Hoffman, Gruber found a start-up that was planning to compete with TripAdvisor, which at that point was only offering travelers’ reviews of hotels. He convinced them that he could bring them a big audience—they just needed to handle the business development side of the project. And so Gruber started over as the vice president of design at this new start-up, although this time he had a team of three engineers instead of sixty. Having a small army of programmers, however, was no longer critical to the success of a company—the Internet had changed everything. Even the smallest start-ups could leverage vastly more powerful development toolkits. The start-up planned to collect the best trip descriptions that global travelers had to offer.


pages: 188 words: 9,226

Collaborative Futures by Mike Linksvayer, Michael Mandiberg, Mushon Zer-Aviv


4chan, Benjamin Mako Hill, British Empire, citizen journalism, cloud computing, collaborative economy, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, Debian,, Firefox, informal economy, jimmy wales, Kickstarter, late capitalism, loose coupling, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, Naomi Klein, Network effects, optical character recognition, packet switching, postnationalism / post nation state, prediction markets, Richard Stallman, semantic web, Silicon Valley, slashdot, Slavoj Žižek, stealth mode startup, technoutopianism, the medium is the message, The Wisdom of Crowds, web application

That faceless person that does not even have a username but is highly motivated and just wants to start contributing was standing there inperson at our doorstep. We didn't know his name, we only knew his IP address—where he physically is: he was right there! Literally browsing our “collaborative site”. And we? We were so Alpha, we were what early web people two decades ago used to call “under construction” or “in stealth mode.” We didn't even have an interface for him yet. It's like he found a public yet unannounced URL for a future collaborative platform that was just not ready yet. We thought we were private, but apparently we were live. We were caught offguard with our first anonymous visitor, very online and just eager to log in. 154 41. Are we interested? The issue of subjectivity quickly turned up in the first book sprint.

In her o -referenced essay “Free Labor: Producing Culture for the Digital Economy,” Tiziana Terranova discusses free labor's complex relationship to capitalism. Free labor is a desire of labor immanent to late capitalism, and late capitalism is the field that both sustains free labor and exhausts it. It exhausts it by subtracting selectively but widely the means through which that labor can reproduce itself: from the burnout syndromes of Internet start-ups to underretribution and exploitation in the cultural economy at large. Late capitalism does not appropriate anything: it nurtures, exploits, and exhausts its labor force and its cultural and affective production. In this sense, it is technically impossible to separate neatly the digital economy of the Net from the larger network economy of late capitalism. Especially since 1994, the Internet is always and simultaneously a gi economy and an advanced capitalist economy.


pages: 532 words: 139,706

Googled: The End of the World as We Know It by Ken Auletta


23andMe, AltaVista, Anne Wojcicki, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, bioinformatics, Burning Man, carbon footprint, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, Colonization of Mars, corporate social responsibility, death of newspapers, disintermediation, don't be evil, facts on the ground, Firefox, Frank Gehry, Google Earth, hypertext link, Innovator's Dilemma, Internet Archive, invention of the telephone, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Long Term Capital Management, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, PageRank, Paul Buchheit, Peter Thiel, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Sand Hill Road, Saturday Night Live, semantic web, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, slashdot, social graph, spectrum auction, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, telemarketer, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, Upton Sinclair, X Prize, yield management

In their first business plan, Google had a sketchy idea that they’d make money by charging companies for advanced search results and by getting digital advertising companies like DoubleClick to sell online ads of some kind. The revenue plan wasn’t very impressive, but the search engine was. Users were multiplying. Secrecy was the watchword. While Google search was still small, he knew it was much larger than competitors anticipated: “We were in stealth mode,” Kamangar said. “If first Yahoo and then Microsoft knew that our number of searches was so much larger, they would be more aggressive.” Repeatedly, Page explained his mania for secrecy by invoking the example of Tesla. Google had to sell the venture capitalists (VCs), but they also had to build a sales force to secure revenues, and for this task they required an experienced senior strategist and salesman.

It does not go unnoticed by their friends that Brin and Page have been regular attendees at this weeklong retreat in August, whose Woodstock-like spirit is captured in Burning Man’s ten stated principles, which include a devotion “to acts of gift giving”; creating “social environments that are unmediated by commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising”; and “a radically participatory ethic” that can lead to “transformative change.” “Google is a cross between a start-up and graduate school,” said Peter Norvig, Google’s director of research, who joined the company in 2001 and wears bright Hawaiian shirts and sneakers with laces left untied. “Formal rules don’t matter. There’s still a loose feel. The disadvantage of being a start-up is the fear that you will run out of money. There is stress. Google is more like graduate school in that you don’t have that stress. You expect one day that the guys in suits will take over. That hasn’t happened.” The engineers remain in charge. Google aims to be nonhierarchical.

The year 1995 was also when a Morgan Stanley analyst named Mary Meeker teamed up with a fellow analyst, Chris DePuy, to author The Internet Report, a thick volume that heralded a brave new world. “In this report,” they wrote on page one, “we attempt to describe what may be one of the hottest new markets to develop in years—the growth of PC-based communications and the Internet.” They said the “market for Internet-related products and services appears to be growing” faster than such early media start-ups as printing, telephones, movies, radio, recorded music, television. With a multiplying base of about 150 million PC users, they predicted e-mail “should become pervasive,” and the Internet would serve as “an information distribution vehicle” for companies, slashing costs, birthing new competitors—“the next Microsofts, Ciscos, Oracles, and Compaqs....” The report was viral. The press heralded it.


pages: 486 words: 132,784

Inventors at Work: The Minds and Motivation Behind Modern Inventions by Brett Stern


Apple II, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, bioinformatics, Build a better mousetrap, business process, cloud computing, computer vision, cyber-physical system, distributed generation, game design, Grace Hopper, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, smart transportation, speech recognition, statistical model, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, the market place, Yogi Berra

Greiner: Because of prior success, I get to spend my time taking on new challenges. My motivation has always been to get robots in people’s hands, and that has happened—a dream come true. There are six thousand military robots now and six million Roombas in people’s hands. But, I want to keep on building. I like creating things the world hasn’t seen before. That is why I am doing another start-up in robotics. Stern: Well, can you talk about your next project? Greiner: Not really, no. It is still in “stealth” mode. But I can say we are focused initially on UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles]—flying robots! Stern: Where do you feel that robotics technology has not been applied yet? Greiner: Oh, there are lots of great places. Just off the top of my head, agri­culture and transportation. We don’t have automated farms or real driverless cars yet. There is a lot that can be done robotically in exploring the universe or exploring underwater that hasn’t yet been taken on.

Was there an incentive for you to leave and do the start-up, or were they not happy about it? Fossum: I’d say that’s an interesting question. Caltech and JPL are very careful about conflicts of interest. We were very open with them about what we were doing and very careful that there were no perceived conflicts of interest between what I was doing at JPL and what we were doing with the company after hours. For me it was after hours—everyone else was working there already. Early on, even the concept of licensing the technology to the actual inventors was kind of a, believe it or not, a novel idea for Caltech. But, they decided to also take that leap, maybe a little bit behind other universities that were already doing that sort of thing. But, they took that leap and actually wound up with an equity stake in the start-up company as part of the licensing arrangement.

Stern: So was selling this company in a sense a way to license the ideas? Was the business sort of a format to commercialize your ideas, but not necessarily bring the product to market? Mochly-Rosen: I think everybody is hoping to bring product to market, but there is no way—or at least it’s extremely rare—that a start-up biotech company ends up bringing a product to market itself. Of course, we have the stories of Genentech and the like, but they are distinguished by their rarity. Usually a start-up brings the experimental product up to Phase 2 trials and then it either licenses it or the company is acquired by Big Pharma to do the large clinical trials. That’s exactly what happened to KAI. Stern: You run a program called SPARK At Stanford. Could you tell me what that is and explain it? Mochly-Rosen: SPARK is a program designed to foster partnerships between scientist entrepreneurs and industry experts and facilitate the transition of research discoveries from Stanford laboratories to patient care.


pages: 394 words: 118,929

Dreaming in Code: Two Dozen Programmers, Three Years, 4,732 Bugs, and One Quest for Transcendent Software by Scott Rosenberg


A Pattern Language, Berlin Wall,, call centre, collaborative editing, conceptual framework, continuous integration, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook,, Firefox, Ford paid five dollars a day, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Howard Rheingold, index card, Internet Archive, inventory management, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, life extension, Loma Prieta earthquake, Menlo Park, Merlin Mann, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Potemkin village, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, semantic web, side project, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, slashdot, software studies, South of Market, San Francisco, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, Therac-25, thinkpad, Turing test, VA Linux, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

Hertzfeld, who had quit adding new features to the Vista prototype once the bigger architectural discussions kicked in, was beginning to sketch out what an address book or “contacts manager” for the new product might look like. Parlante had moved from user research into prototyping a calendar. Morgen Sagen had begun to create an automated build system for the project named Hardhat, a framework of code that would help the developers reassemble the program’s building blocks after they made changes. Everyone was itching to start writing code. But by the fall, OSAF was still in stealth mode. Kapor was a public figure; rumors had spread along the Silicon Valley grapevine that he was up to something, but what, exactly, remained a mystery. Kapor was loath to make a big-splash announcement without having a working product. That was classic “vaporware,” and he’d been down that road with his company On Technology in the late eighties; it had the dubious honor of a place in the Vaporware Hall of Fame curated by a Macintosh columnist.

And bringing a new product to users was what Kapor and his Chandler developers ached to do in the summer of 2003. They were an odd hybrid: They functioned like an open source project in that they were posting their source code on the Internet and trying to build a community of volunteer developers around it; but they also felt and acted like a classic software start-up company, with a core group of programmers trying to get a new product off the ground and worrying about how long it was taking. For Kapor, who had built Lotus Development Corporation from the ground up and later spent a couple of years as a venture capitalist, the start-up model was the world he knew, and open source was the world he was groping toward. His motivation to create Chandler—an ambitious rethinking of PIM software to enable easy sharing of data and to run on the three most popular kinds of personal computers—was, undoubtedly, to use Raymond’s phrase, “scratching a personal itch.”

His motivation to create Chandler—an ambitious rethinking of PIM software to enable easy sharing of data and to run on the three most popular kinds of personal computers—was, undoubtedly, to use Raymond’s phrase, “scratching a personal itch.” He wanted to build Chandler because he craved something like it, and similar existing products simply didn’t match the picture in his head. But he didn’t begin, as a lone open source hacker might have, by posting a first chunk of code; he began, as an entrepreneur would, by subleasing some office space. As with so many software start-ups, OSAF’s first digs were funky, informal, improvised. Kapor had found space in Belmont on the Peninsula fringe of Silicon Valley, in a nondescript low-slung office park just down the road from the glass-towered campus of Oracle, the giant producer of corporate databases. The building also housed “Oracle University.” An Extended Stay America motel was going up next door for migrant businesspeople stopping off at Oracle.


pages: 588 words: 131,025

The Patient Will See You Now: The Future of Medicine Is in Your Hands by Eric Topol


23andMe, 3D printing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Anne Wojcicki, Atul Gawande, augmented reality, bioinformatics, call centre, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, computer vision, conceptual framework, connected car, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, dark matter, data acquisition, disintermediation, don't be evil, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk,, Erik Brynjolfsson, Firefox, global village, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, Nate Silver, natural language processing, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, obamacare, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, phenotype, placebo effect, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia, Snapchat, social graph, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Turing test, Uber for X, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, X Prize

Roughly ten billion lab tests are done each year in the United States, and they factor into 70 percent to 80 percent of the medical decisions that doctors make.2,5 Knowing how big a part of medicine this is and that there was something quite innovative going on, I visited the Theranos headquarters, an enormous, modernized, bright-colored warehouse with large pictures of happy kids posted throughout, to interview Holmes. We started my visit with a light lunch and spoke briefly about her leaving Stanford at age nineteen and spending the last decade building Theranos, which up until quite recently was in stealth mode. Before I interviewed Holmes, I asked her if I could have my blood tested. She was more than happy to accommodate my request. It was a refreshing experience. No tourniquet. No fist pumping or large needles. Instead the young woman drawing my blood put on a finger warmer that dilated the blood vessels in my index finger. Then, without me even feeling the tiny pinprick, she captured a droplet of blood in one of their so-called nanotainers and it was off to the lab they have on premises.

Panel Recommends Lung-Cancer Screening,” Wall Street Journal, December 30, 2013, 95. D. V. Makarov et al., “Prostate Cancer Imaging Trends After a Nationwide Effort to Discourage Inappropriate Prostate Cancer Imaging,” Journal of the National Cancer Institute 105, no. 17 (2013): 1306–1313. 96. J. Dorrier, “California Startup, Tribogenics, Develops Smart Phone Sized Portable X-Ray Machines,” Singularity Hub, November 16, 2013, 97. J. B. Haun et al., “Micro-NMR for Rapid Molecular Analysis of Human Tumor Samples,” Science Translational Medicine 3, no. 71 (2011): 1–14. 98. N. Ungerleider, “An X-Ray Machine the Size of an iPhone That Looks Like a Star Trek Tricorder,” Fast Company, December 8, 2011, 99.

C. Farr, “Former Apple CEO Backs Virtual Doctor’s Office to Create the ‘Consumer Era’ of Medicine,” Venture Beat, January 22, 2014, 68. R. Empson, “With $1.2M from Greylock, Yuri Milner and 500 Startups, First Opinion Lets You Text a Doctor Anytime,” TechCrunch, January 14, 2014, 69. O. Kharif, “Telemedicine: Doctor Visits via Video Calls,” Bloomberg Businessweek, February 27, 2014, 70. W. Khawar, “For $69 and Your Smart Phone in Hand, a Board Certified Dermatologist Will Look at Your Rash,” iMedical Apps, August 19, 2013, 71.


Pandora's Brain by Calum Chace


3D printing, AI winter, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, artificial general intelligence, brain emulation, Extropian, friendly AI, hive mind, Ray Kurzweil, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, Skype, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, strong AI, technological singularity, theory of mind, Turing test, Wall-E

It was just a holiday job, but it was really interesting, and I was grateful for the opportunity. I think I got the job thanks to the work my father was doing, as I explained. I was only there a few weeks, though, because frankly it scared me.’ ‘In what way?’ Vic asked. ‘Well, the first thing that spooked me was when I found out that Ivan’s headquarters is a big ship that sails around the world in stealth mode, almost never making land, with Ivan and his senior staff coming and going by helicopter. Then a couple of people in my team disappeared. It was very sudden: one day they were there and the next day they weren’t. No goodbyes, no explanations, and no-one talked about them. It was as if they had never existed.’ ‘Really?’ Vic said slowly. He leaned forward and his body language showed that Matt had just gained his complete attention.

PANDORA’S BRAIN CALUM retired in 2012 to focus on writing after a 30-year career in business, in which he was a marketer, a strategy consultant and a CEO. He maintains his interest in business by serving as chairman and coach for growing companies. He is co-author of The Internet Startup Bible, a business best-seller published by Random House in 2000. He is a regular speaker on artificial intelligence and related technologies and runs a blog on the subject at He lives in London and Sussex with his partner, a director of a design school, and their daughter. He studied philosophy at Oxford University, where he discovered that the science fiction he had been reading since early boyhood is actually philosophy in fancy dress. PANDORA’S BRAIN CALUM CHACE Three Cs Publishing For Julia and Lauren PANDORA’S BRAIN A Three Cs book.

I had recently finished reading Ray Kurzweil’s The Age of Spiritual Machines, which had made me consider the astounding possibility that conscious machines could be created within my lifetime. That book had been recommended by an old friend, Nick Hadlow, and when I returned to England I suggested that we write a novel together based on the premise. We did, and it was awful. Actually Nick’s chapters were rather good, but with hindsight I realised that as mere stripling of 40, I was too young to write a novel. I had recently co-authored a best-selling business book (The Internet Startup Bible, which featured prominently in Amazon’s first ever UK TV advert) but I didn’t realise how much harder it is to write a good novel. A decade or so later I retired from full-time work, and had both the time and (arguably) the more rounded life experience to do a better job. The story arc is the same, but the characters and much else are wholly different. The book wouldn’t exist without the help of my partner Julia.


pages: 390 words: 114,538

Digital Wars: Apple, Google, Microsoft and the Battle for the Internet by Charles Arthur


AltaVista, Build a better mousetrap, Burning Man, cloud computing, credit crunch, crowdsourcing, disintermediation, don't be evil,, Firefox, gravity well, Jeff Bezos, John Gruber, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Network effects, PageRank, pre–internet, Robert X Cringely, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Skype, slashdot, Snapchat, software patent, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, Tim Cook: Apple, upwardly mobile

As an example of the latter, Page and Brin pointed in the second paper to the results of a search for ‘Bill Clinton’, the then US president: one search engine returned ‘Bill Clinton Joke of the Day’ as the top result. (The PageRank patent is owned by Stanford University, where it was developed; Google is the exclusive licensee.) They became a classic Silicon Valley start-up in summer 1998, maxing out their credit cards to buy equipment, spending almost nothing on office furniture (the tables in their first offices at 232 Santa Margarita Avenue, Menlo Park were doors balanced on carpenters’ timber-sawing stands), and operating in what is commonly known as ‘stealth mode’. Renamed from ‘BackRub’, and almost named ‘The Whatbox’ (they decided it sounded a bit too much like ‘wetbox’, which sounded vaguely porn related), the Google web page first went live in August 1997. They brought a particular focus to what they thought mattered about the experience of using their site.

Certainly for Palm, we will reach into many more companies with these devices.’4 Analysts agreed: in February 2006, Nick Jones, an analyst at the industry research company Gartner, declared that Windows Mobile had more than 10,000 developers working on applications, ‘far more than any rival mobile operating system’, ahead of Symbian (and Nokia) and that of Research In Motion (RIM), the Canadian maker of the BlackBerry.5 Android The September 2005 announcement of the Microsoft–Palm tie-up grabbed the interest of one particular Google employee: Andy Rubin, a former Apple employee, whose second mobile start-up, called Android, had been purchased by Google the month before. (He had left his first mobile start-up, Danger, which produced the Hiptop phone and would later be sold to Microsoft.) Larry Page in particular saw mobile as the future; Eric Schmidt was less convinced. So Page, with co-founder Sergey Brin, bought Android without consulting Schmidt. Like Knook, they could see that phones with computer power were going to become more plentiful than PCs.

2 When any feature was being thought about, that question kept coming up: will it break the antitrust ruling? ‘I think it has almost had a chilling effect on the way they do product development,’ Foley suggests. With Microsoft suitably admonished, and now living under a new regime of oversight, the scene was set for Microsoft’s next challenges: in search, digital music and mobile phones. First was a little start-up that was already becoming the talk of internet users, one that was to form its corporate thinking around a motto that tried to express a desire not to be Microsoft: ‘Don’t be evil.’ Chapter Three Search: Google versus Microsoft The weather in Brisbane for the 7th World Wide Web conference in May 1998 was dismal: ‘It rained every day,’ recalls Mike Bracken, one of the attendees. Among the many papers on the schedule for the conference, though largely unnoticed, was one by two Stanford undergraduates, entitled ‘The anatomy of a large-scale hypertextual web search engine’.


pages: 468 words: 233,091

Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days by Jessica Livingston


8-hour work day, affirmative action, AltaVista, Apple II, Brewster Kahle, business process, Byte Shop, Danny Hillis, don't be evil, fear of failure, financial independence, Firefox, full text search, game design, Googley, HyperCard, illegal immigration, Internet Archive, Jeff Bezos, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, nuclear winter, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Sand Hill Road, side project, Silicon Valley, slashdot, social software, software patent, South of Market, San Francisco, Startup school, stealth mode startup, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, web application, Y Combinator

Meanwhile, you hear from the VCs, “You’re too paranoid.” So it’s hard to find the right balance and be human, because you don’t know who’s genuine and who’s not. Livingston: It must be frustrating not to be able to share your idea. Ross: Incredibly. If you ever want to stop a conversation dead in its tracks, just use my magic words: “stealth mode.” I’ve also found “programmer” to work well in many situations. But we’ll have our day. Livingston: Are there any lessons that you learned in the Firefox days that you are applying to this new startup? Ross: One is to make sure you are always in communication with the people who are eventually going to use your product. It’s very easy to just lock yourself in a room and code all day, and you forget what the real problems are that people are having. So you have to keep talking to people and keep refining what you are doing.

But seeing what startups are really like will at least show other organizations what to aim for. The time may soon be coming when instead of startups trying to seem more corporate, corporations will try to seem more like startups. That would be a good thing. Paul Graham Cofounder, Viaweb Preface It’s been more than a year since Founders at Work was first published. What have I learned since? The biggest surprise has been the sheer number of people interested in startups. I know about the ones who apply to Y Combinator, read Hacker News, or attend Startup School, but I could never be sure how many people were interested in startups beyond that core of would-be founders. A lot, it turns out. I get emails and see blog posts about Founders at Work on an almost daily basis. Some people finally took the plunge and started a startup, some learned that it was all right to change their idea, some were able to face a new day even though their company seemed doomed.

Some people are just more right than they ever deserve to be. Livingston: You’ve done startups in the East and West Coast hubs. Is one place better than the other for startups? Kahle: Oh, I think it’s much easier to do a startup on the West Coast. There are all the facilities and services available to you. You can put together a marketing department out of part-time people. You can hire an accountant to just do exactly what you need. You need a lot less infrastructure that you control to do a startup on the West Coast than on the East Coast. If you started with $8 million, you can buy everything you need; but if you are starting, just you, you can do a startup out of your bedroom. In fact, a lot of people do. In fact, most bedrooms I think are startups! The idea that you can start on a shoestring, that you can hold a meeting in a coffeehouse and that’s OK, is perfectly legitimate on the West Coast.


pages: 537 words: 149,628

Ghost Fleet: A Novel of the Next World War by P. W. Singer, August Cole


3D printing, Admiral Zheng, augmented reality, British Empire, energy security, Firefox, glass ceiling, global reserve currency, Google Earth, Google Glasses, IFF: identification friend or foe, Just-in-time delivery, Maui Hawaii, new economy, RAND corporation, reserve currency, RFID, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, stealth mode startup, trade route, Wall-E, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, zero day

Daniel had been an early investor in Uni, which was now one of the leading video-game studios in Palo Alto, and in a few of the firms he had quietly reached out to. At other firms, though he wasn’t an investor, his reputation had been enough. That, and the simple lure of the offer. It was the opportunity, he had said, to be part of the valley’s most important startup ever. The rule for selection had been simple. The CTO of each firm Aboye talked to would designate his or her three best programmers. The limited numbers were ostensibly to keep the project in stealth mode, as the investors called it. The goal was to hide their business not only from Directorate spies, but also from the National Security Agency. Even if the NSA’s networks weren’t pwned by the Directorate, which most people suspected they were, anger over the sneak backdoors of the old Snowden-era scandals lingered.

That he could build a life of incomprehensible good fortune atop such sadness seemed so improbable that it could only be part of something unexplainable, something much bigger than himself. That was why he’d easily fallen into engineering at Stanford. It was predictable, the opposite of what his life had been to that point. And so it was Daniel’s ability to distinguish between what was predictable and what required serendipity that had powered his rise through Silicon Valley’s venture-capital investment firms; he knew which tech startups to back and which to avoid. After he finally made it through the security line’s sequential body scanners and DNA tagging, a petite young redheaded woman in a light gray pantsuit stepped forward, her rubber-soled pumps squeaking as she halted before him. “Mr. Aboye, I am Catherine Hines, special assistant to the principal deputy undersecretary of defense for Acquisitions, Technology, and Logistics,” she said, rattling her title off like an auctioneer with a rare treasure.

Hangar One, Moffett Field, Mountain View, California The thing that always jarred Daniel Aboye was the smell. The space was cavernous, 1,140 feet by 308 feet, to be exact, the size of three Superdomes. But the smell filled even that void. To someone from outside the valley, it was the tangy funk of old pizza and people who’d gone too long without a shower. But to anyone local, it smelled like money. Fame. Power. Success. So much had changed in Silicon Valley’s startup scene during the past few decades, but there was one constant. This smell. And the fact that it now filled Hangar One made it all the more appropriate. In 1931, the city fathers of Sunnyvale, California, had come up with a unique plan for economic development. They’d raised $480,000 to buy nearly a thousand acres of farmland and then sold off the land to the U.S. government for one dollar.


pages: 677 words: 206,548

Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It by Marc Goodman


23andMe, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, Bill Joy: nanobots, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, borderless world, Brian Krebs, business process, butterfly effect, call centre, Chelsea Manning, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, data acquisition, data is the new oil, Dean Kamen, disintermediation, don't be evil, double helix, Downton Abbey, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Filter Bubble, Firefox, Flash crash, future of work, game design, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Google Glasses, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, High speed trading, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, illegal immigration, impulse control, industrial robot, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Harrison: Longitude, Jony Ive, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kuwabatake Sanjuro: assassination market, Law of Accelerating Returns, Lean Startup, license plate recognition, litecoin, M-Pesa, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, mobile money, more computing power than Apollo, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, national security letter, natural language processing, obamacare, Occupy movement, Oculus Rift, offshore financial centre, optical character recognition, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Thiel, pre–internet, RAND corporation, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, refrigerator car, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Rodney Brooks, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, security theater, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, Stuxnet, supply-chain management, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tesla Model S, The Wisdom of Crowds, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, uranium enrichment, Wall-E, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Wave and Pay, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, web application, WikiLeaks, Y Combinator, zero day

Think before you share on social networks. Criminals, ranging from stalkers to burglars, routinely monitor social media for information. Posting travel itineraries can let burglars know that you will be away from home for two weeks on vacation—an invitation for trouble. 7. Use your operating system’s built-in software firewall, available in both Windows and Mac, to block unwanted incoming connections to your machine, and enable “stealth mode” to make it more difficult for hackers and automated crime bots to find you online. NOTE: Both the threats and the tools to protect yourself online change frequently. For additional guidance, visit www.​futurecrimes.​com. Acknowledgments One more thing … STEVE JOBS A project of this magnitude can never be the work of just one person alone. To this point, I owe a debt of gratitude to a large number of individuals for their support and contributions throughout the creation of this book, chief among them my literary agent Richard Pine of InkWell Management.

According to statistics kept by the call centers, over 95 percent of clients described themselves as “happy” with the service they had received. Like all tech start-ups, Innovative Marketing was well represented on social media. Hundreds of its employees had established profiles on LinkedIn, including their positions and work histories. To bring in the talent required to grow the start-up, Innovative Marketing placed job ads on numerous career Web sites and used recruiters to help find project managers, UNIX administrators, search engine optimization specialists, researchers, support engineers, and business development associates. To manage its explosive growth, Innovative Marketing used a variety of techniques to address the human resources issues common in the start-up world. It offered prizes to the best salesmen and carefully selected its employees of the month.

WOODY ALLEN Innovative Marketing was a small and promising start-up that created pioneering software products to address its clients’ needs. The firm’s young founders incorporated their company in Belize because of its favorable tax regimes, a smart move that they modeled on the business practices of well-established tech giants, such as Apple, Google, and HP, each of which has cleverly created subsidiaries in tax havens around the world. To further reduce overhead costs, Innovative Marketing chose to establish its main offices in Kiev, Ukraine, where highly competent technical graduates with advanced degrees in computer science and mathematics were abundant and employees could be hired for a fraction of the salaries offered in Silicon Valley. Like any good tech start-up, Innovative Marketing advertised its wares across the Web using banner ads and paid to ensure its software appeared high up in search engine query results.


pages: 481 words: 121,669

The Invisible Web: Uncovering Information Sources Search Engines Can't See by Gary Price, Chris Sherman, Danny Sullivan


AltaVista, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, bioinformatics, Brewster Kahle, business intelligence, dark matter, Douglas Engelbart, full text search, HyperCard, hypertext link, information retrieval, Internet Archive, joint-stock company, knowledge worker, natural language processing, pre–internet, profit motive, publish or perish, search engine result page, side project, Silicon Valley, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Ted Nelson, Vannevar Bush, web application

So while searchers using next-generation tools will likely be able to access much more of the Invisible Web via general-purpose search engines than they can today, the rate of growth of the Invisible Web is likely to outpace the enhanced capability of the tools. In this chapter, we take a brief look at some of the most promising new approaches to making the Invisible Web visible. Some of these technologies may be in place by the time this book sees print. Others may never make it out of research labs—and we’re certain there are still other projects operating in stealth mode, waiting for the ideal time to launch a competitive assault against the major search services. 127 128 The Invisible Web Smarter Crawlers At the most basic level, search engines will get much better at compiling truly comprehensive indexes of the Web. In part, they’ll do this by enhancing their crawler programs to be smarter about how they operate. First generation crawlers use a non-selective approach to retrieving Web pages.

Search Form URL: See Main Page Disqualified Directors Register U.K. “The information available here is an extract from the Register of Companies and Register of Disqualified Directors, which are updated regularly.” 166 The Invisible Web Search Form URL: Related Resources: Basic Company Name and Address Index (Limited Free Data) U.K. dot com directory Utilizes the Network Solutions Domain Name Registration Database to provide basic company information. This should be used in conjunction with other directory tools. Search Form URL: advanced.htm Ecomp Executive Compensation Database Compensation data for executives at U.S. public companies. Search Form URL: See Main Page European High-Tech Industry Database “... research startups, investors, and advisors to high-tech Europe. You can search through press releases of these companies and read their profiles in the Radar database.” Search Form URL: comp AdvSearchForm.asp Federally Incorporated Companies Canada This database produced by the Canadian Government allows searching by corporation name, location, status, and more.

Search Form URL: Related Resources: Forbes Private 500 (Largest U.S. Privately Held Companies) Forbes International 800 Inc. 500 Database (1982-2000),3762,,00.html Herringtown The Red Herring, a respected publication providing coverage of the information technology business, provides this database of startup companies. Content is provided by the companies themselves. Search Form URL: home/home.jsp Related Resources: The Industry Standard “Net Deals” Database Kompass “Every company worldwide [that] participates in business-tobusiness commerce may be listed in the Kompass Database.” The free online version has limited data.


pages: 624 words: 127,987

The Personal MBA: A World-Class Business Education in a Single Volume by Josh Kaufman


Albert Einstein, Atul Gawande, Black Swan, business process, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, correlation does not imply causation, Credit Default Swap, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Dean Kamen, delayed gratification, discounted cash flows, double entry bookkeeping, Douglas Hofstadter,, Frederick Winslow Taylor, Gödel, Escher, Bach, high net worth, hindsight bias, index card, inventory management, iterative process, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kevin Kelly, Lao Tzu, loose coupling, loss aversion, market bubble, Network effects, Parkinson's law, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, place-making, premature optimization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, side project, statistical model, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, subscription business, telemarketer, the scientific method, time value of money, Toyota Production System, tulip mania, Upton Sinclair, Walter Mischel, Y Combinator, Yogi Berra

On their own, ideas are largely worthless—discovering whether or not you can actually make them work in reality is the most important job of any entrepreneur. Don’t be shy about showing potential customers your work in progress. Unless you work in an industry with unusually aggressive, competent, and well-funded competitors, you really don’t have to worry about other people “stealing” your idea. Ideas are cheap—what counts is the ability to translate an idea into reality, which is much more difficult than recognizing a good idea. “Stealth mode” diminishes your early learning opportunities, putting you at a huge early disadvantage. It’s almost always better to focus on getting feedback from real customers as quickly as you possibly can. A Prototype is an early representation of what your offering will look like. It may be a physical model, a computer rendering, a diagram, a flowchart, or a one-page paper that describes the major benefits and features.

You’ve found a suitable location that you can rent for around $10,000 per month (if you sign a twelve-month lease), and you estimate that you’ll need an additional $12,000 per month to pay employee salaries and other monthly operating expenses. You’ll also need to spend around $5,000 up front for equipment: mats, blocks, and a computer to handle membership records. The commercial real estate agent you’re working with is putting pressure on you to move quickly, saying the location you want may be snatched up by another tenant if you don’t commit now. Your current life savings are enough to cover the start-up costs and three months of projected operating expenses. You’re excited, but you want to ensure that you’re making the right decision before you move forward. Should you sign the lease? Stories like this are very common: an excited first-time entrepreneur has a dream of owning a restaurant, bar, or bookstore, so they invest their life savings and take on significant debt to open the new business.

Venture capitalists and other forms of investment can provide “seed capital”—a fixed amount of money you can use to start the business. The more money you raise in capital and the more slowly you spend it, the more time you have to make the business work. The faster you “burn” through your capital, the more money you need to raise and the more quickly you need to start bringing in revenue. If you burn through all of your start-up capital and can’t raise more, game over. That’s why investors and savvy entrepreneurs watch the business’s “burn rate” very closely—the slower the burn, the more time you have to create a successful business. The lower your Overhead, the more flexibility you’ll have and the easier it will be to sustain your business operations indefinitely. SHARE THIS CONCEPT: Costs: Fixed and Variable Watch the costs and the profits will take care of themselves.


pages: 598 words: 134,339

Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World by Bruce Schneier


23andMe, Airbnb, airport security, AltaVista, Anne Wojcicki, augmented reality, Benjamin Mako Hill, Black Swan, Brewster Kahle, Brian Krebs, call centre, Cass Sunstein, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, congestion charging, disintermediation, Edward Snowden, experimental subject, failed state, fault tolerance, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, Firefox, friendly fire, Google Chrome, Google Glasses, hindsight bias, informal economy, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Jacob Appelbaum, Jaron Lanier, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, linked data, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, Nash equilibrium, Nate Silver, national security letter, Network effects, Occupy movement, payday loans, pre–internet, price discrimination, profit motive, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, recommendation engine, RFID, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, South China Sea, stealth mode startup, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, Uber and Lyft, urban planning, WikiLeaks, zero day

O’Brien (28 Oct 2012), “Data-gathering via apps presents a gray legal area,” New York Times, HelloSpy is an app: There are quite a few of these tracking apps out there. HelloSpy is particularly blatant. Although the disclaimer on the home page states that it is designed for “ethical spying for parents,” or use on a “mobile device that you own or have proper consent to monitor,” the literature also trumpets its ability to operate in “stealth mode,” and has a page dedicated to marital infidelity. See spy on his wife or girlfriend: StealthGenie is another spyware app. In 2014, its CEO was indicted and arrested for selling it in the US. Craig Timberg and Matt Zapatosly (29 Sep 2014), “Maker of StealthGenie, an app used for spying, is indicted in Virginia,” Washington Post,

Bailey, and Samer Faraj (Mar 2000), “The role of intermediaries in the development of trust on the WWW: The use and prominence of trusted third parties and privacy statements,” Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication 5, customers were willing to pay more: Janice Y. Tsai et al. (Jun 2007), “The effect of online privacy information on purchasing behavior: An experimental study,” 6th Workshop on the Economics of Information Security (WEIS), Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, there are exceptions: Cadie Thompson (7 Mar 2014), “Want privacy online? Start-ups bet users are ready to pay,” NBC News, not tracking its users: DuckDuckGo, Ello is a social network: Sharon Profis (26 Sep 2014), “10 things to know about Ello, the ad-free social network,” CNET, 10: Privacy The most common misconception: This article from 1979, for example, looks at privacy as a way to conceal facts about oneself in order to inflate one’s reputation.