Another week comes to an end and another edition kicks off. Welcome to TheSunnyMag, a weekly list of stories and essays curated from around the web. These are some of the best and most insightful pieces that did the rounds last week. Paul Graham’s essay on fundraising, the story of our unhappy generation Y & Twitter’s journey to the IPO have some great insights to share. Have a good weekend!
New New World
The Ghost of Bitcoin: In search of Satoshi Nakamoto, the man behind the most famous virtual currency, Polygon finds a harrowing digital economy only a gamer could love. Satoshi Nakamoto doesn’t exist. Or, at least, if he does, he’s one of the rare modern individuals who is practically impossible to locate. Nakamoto is the creator of Bitcoin. Over the years since the virtual currency’s inception, there have been several quixotic expeditions to find him. Some have been more thorough than others. More here.
Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy: Say hi to Lucy. Lucy is part of Generation Y, the generation born between the late 1970s and the mid 1990s. She’s also part of a yuppie culture that makes up a large portion of Gen Y. I have a term for yuppies in the Gen Y age group—I call them Gen Y Protagonists & Special Yuppies, or GYPSYs. A GYPSY is a unique brand of yuppie, one who thinks they are the main character of a very special story. So Lucy’s enjoying her GYPSY life, and she’s very pleased to be Lucy. Only issue is this one thing: Lucy’s kind of unhappy. More here.
How freewheeling Twitter became a money-spinning juggernaut: Around midnight on Christmas Eve of 2009, a handful of employees at Twitter received an unconventional holiday greeting from Dick Costolo, then the chief operating officer. “It was an email that said, ‘We have to move really, really fast. There’s no time to rest because we have a massive opportunity in front of us,” recalled Anamitra Banerji, who headed the team that built Twitter’s first advertising product. More here.
SEX AND POLITICS AT GOOGLE: It’s A Game Of Thrones In Mountain View: Past the veneer of primary colors, inside the walls of Google’s Mountain View campus, Google is a hotbed of sex and political infighting. And it always has been. Read more.
Why you should look at Google and not Facebook as a model to stay ahead: I expect that within a few years, my Tesla electric car will drive by itself using Google software. Yes, I am talking about the selfdriving, autonomous vehicles that we saw in science fiction movies. Google is making these a reality. Its autonomous cars have already driven half a million miles on California roads—without a single accident. These will soon transform transportation in cities all over the world. More here.
Google’s Eric Schmidt says government spying is ‘the nature of our society’: Tech giant’s executive chairman calls for greater transparency but declines to ‘pass judgment’ on spying operations. More here.
Why Organizations Should Embrace Randomness Like Ant Colonies: Consider the common ant. Each one is by genetic design capable of only a few simple behaviors and binary choices, making it a pretty dumb, rigid, inflexible being. Yet the collective behavior of an ant colony is adaptive, flexible and even creative; it’s a highly structured social organization. More here.
8 Truths why IT Services Organizations cannot do Software Products: This articles core purpose is to warn leaders in IT Services Organizations – “DON’T BUILD SOFTWARE PRODUCTS”. But success makes one arrogant, so I suspect some leaders will still build their own products, in which case hire somebody who has made these mistakes before and is familiar with the 8 Truths. More here.
Work Fast And Break Through: 7 Apps To Speed Up Your Productivity: While advances in technology are often to blame for always-on TV and never-ending news, there are also many digital tools that can help us work smarter. After all, we wrestle day in and day out with the greatest equalizer in the world: time. With 24 precise hours in a day, we’re often left falling behind on work and home tasks. To amp up productivity, here is a short (quick!) list of apps that will help you do things faster, and in many cases, better. More here.
Social Interest Positioning – Visualising Facebook Friends’ Likes With Data Grabbed Using Google Refine: What do my Facebook friends have in common in terms of the things they have Liked, or in terms of their music or movie preferences? (And does this say anything about me?!) Here’s a recipe for visualising that data. More here.
How to Raise Money: This essay focuses on phase 2 fundraising. That’s the type the startups we fund are doing on Demo Day, and this essay is the advice we give them. More here.
Quit Destroying Your Own Business With Poor Working Capital Management: Clearly, if his business was good, he should not have credit card debt in the first place or could easily make the payments required. But, that is not the real issue here. The real issue is two fold: 1) Working capital loan management and 2) Proper understanding and use of that working capital or business loan. More here.
In Silicon Valley start-up world, pedigree counts: When asked to name the most notable rags-to-riches entrepreneur that his firm has funded, venture capitalist Ben Horowitz doesn’t hesitate: Christian Gheorghe, a Romanian immigrant who came to the United States without speaking English, and rose from limo driver to founder of a business-analytics company, Tidemark. More here.
What to Tell VCs When You’re Missing the Data They Want to See: As a seed stage investor I’m often looking at an incomplete picture when trying to assess an opportunity. Inevitably there will be a question where the data I’m seeking isn’t something the company has yet calculated/tested, or haven’t thought to research or maybe even not as important to their business as I’m suggesting it might be. For founders, these blank spaces are great moments to stray from your standard pitch and really connect with an investor. They’re also pitfalls where I’ve seen some entrepreneurs mess up and hurt their credibility. So here are some ideas of what to tell VCs when you’re missing the data they want to see. More here.
What Mobile Buyers Are REALLY Doing on Your Website: We are multi-tasking phenoms. During my last trip to the greatest diner on earth, I scanned an article about CRMs between the first and second coffee pour. Midway through my omelet, I got side-tracked by a tweet about Alexander Graham Bell. By the time the check came, I’d forwarded myself a research report for future download — content that ended up inspiring this blog post. All of this was done on a screen about the size of an index card. More here.
Why naming a startup funding round wrong could cost millions: While raising outside capital is not the only way to obtain financing for a startup, it seems to be the preferred method for new technologies where revenue or a business model is unclear. A common trend is emerging: more often than not, I hear that folks are raising their “seed round,” typically the initial money used to capitalize a company or if founders have capitalized, the first money taken from outside investors. More here.
Operation Gringo Revenge: Tracking My Stolen Laptop in Panama: Three months ago my Macbook Pro laptop computer was stolen by hookers in Panama. Join me as I attempt to recover it from over 2000 miles away. More here.
Whose Water Is It Anyway? Once a natural resource, water is now big business. The time is coming when human beings will wage war over water, says film maker Shekhar Kapur. Read here.
The malaise that drove down the rupee: Desperate attempts to woo foreign capital by boosting investor sentiment is unlikely to result in a lasting solution to India’s currency travails. More here.
Narendra Dabholkar: Narendra Dabholkar, fighter against superstition, was killed on August 20th, aged 67. An obituary by The Economist. Read here.