Startups & Tech

By Chris McCann

A curated list of the top stories in technology, startups, and venture capital.

A curated list of the top stories in technology, startups, and venture capital.

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Startups & Tech - Issue #185: Web3 Developers, Alexa As a Platform, Your Salary Data

Report on the developer ecosystem for Web3. Solana is one of the fastest growing ecosystems in terms of developer growth.Amazon Alexa has sold well but hasn't really turned into a platform (as many expected).Tips for managing a remote team.On perspective on t…


Startups & Tech - Issue #184: Devtools, Pivoting, Solana Predictions, Web3 Discord

In 2022 - more and more dev tools themselves could be moving to the cloud. Company building is not always a straight line, here are some successful companies that had to pivot.A skeptical take on the play-to-earn model for gaming. Some open-source communities…


Startups & Tech - Issue #183: Coding for Kids, Failed Startups, DST

Facebook/Meta is the most hated company of 2021.TikTok live video product is an illegal fork of OBS :( Reddit filed to go public (confidential filing).Discussion on good “coding for kids” books. Personally I’ve had a lot of fun with MIT’s Scratch with our kid…


Startups & Tech - Issue #182: Corporate Venture, Composable Data, Better Open Source Business Models

Both Twilio and Databricks (Race Capital Portfolio portfolio company) are starting venture funds 👀A short thread to understand venture capital portfolio construction better. Web3 could usher in a new composable data layer for applications to be built upon. Be…


Startups & Tech Reading List - Cloud Disruption, Global Fintech, Democratized Tech

Square changed its overall name to Block, to tie in all of their products. Why is Docusign a $50B company? TLDR - Its signatures are known and accepted in court.The abilities “big tech” offers are democratizing to everyone, which could be their downfall. Cred…


Startup Digest Reading List - Web3, Dark Patterns, ML Architecture

Netflix is now releasing games on both Android and iOS (coming soon).An overview on why there is a silicon chip shortage.There’s a common scam going around on Zelle (the banking payment network).A DAO setup to purchase a copy of the constitution lost the bid.…


Startup Digest Reading List - Coinbase Earnings, How Credit Cards Make Money

Amazon AWS is planning to move up the stack and offer enterprise applications, not just infrastructure.Discord will not be integrating with crypto wallets (yet) despite its heavy usage from the crypto community.Apple is launching a new product to get into the…


Startup Digest Reading List - Skeptical Take on the Metaverse, Open Source GTM, DAOs

Facebook changed its name to Meta, to capture the nebulous metaverse.Sam Altman wants to scan your eyeballs and give you crypto for it.Hertz placed one of the largest car orders to Tesla, for 100K model 3’s.Mastercard wants to enable all of their merchants to…


Startup Digest Reading List - Chief Product Officer, Asking Dumb Questions, U.S. Super Apps

Paypal is looking to acquire Pinterest, would be an odd couple.Linkedin is retreating from China.The first ETF focused on Bitcoin traded on the NYSE.Apple announced the newest laptops, M1 Pro/Max series.


Startup Digest Reading List - Open Source Fintech, AI Report, News Feeds

High speed internet could be coming to airlines while traveling in the air, via Starlink. Amazon is allowing most of its tech and corporate staff to work remotely forever. Mark Zuckerberg personally responds to the controversies it is facing, notably the rese…


Startup Digest Reading List - Facebook’s Bad Week, Concentration Risk in Fintech, State of VC

Facebook had a tough week - with an internal whistleblower, all of their services going offline, and a Senate committee hearing. TikTok hit 1 billion monthly active users.Netflix acquired its first game studio.Twitch had a major hack of both source code and u…


Startup Digest Reading List - Collision of DeFi and FinTech, Working in VR, ML Company Landscape

Facebook did internal research and found out its own products are harmful to teenagers. Compound accidentally sent $90M to their users, and asked for it back.Imgur was acquired by MediaLab, the startup incubator. Odd choice for the one high flying startup.Fiv…


Startup Digest Reading List - Understanding Startup Compensation, BNPL Growth, Asymmetric Upside

Amazon is finally cracking down on Chinese vendors who were selling goods & buying fake reviews. If you use Gmail, be careful about Google keeping records of all of your purchases via receipts. Twitter is working to enable crypto tipping in app & auth…


Startup Digest Reading List - B2B Payments, New Interfaces, and Play to Earn

Gitlab filed to go public via their S-1. The company is doing $233M in revenue, growing 69% with over 3,600 customers. Their overall revenue is low (compared to benchmarks) but their net revenue retention is best in class.Mailchimp was acquired by Intuit for …


Startup Digest Reading List - What PMs Do, History of TSMC, Facebook Glasses

Facebook is building and launching smart glasses (remember Google Glasses?) in partnership with Ray-Ban.Apple is losing its grip on its payment ecosystem now through the latest in the lawsuit with Epic Games, and with Korea Japan & India forcing Apple to …


Startup Digest Reading List - Saber, China Internet Report, Solana Ignition

Amazon will be using Affirm for their buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) checkout option, in a move following Square's acquisition of AfterPay for $29B.Databricks raised a massive $1.6B on a $38B valuation with a (small) participation from us at Race Capital & my p…


Startup Digest Reading List - Solana, Punks, and Valuing DAOs

There is still a big shortage of silicon chips and now TSMC is raising chip prices 20%.Apple (after a lawsuit) is finally allowing for alternative payment methods outside of the AppStore. Visa bought an NFT Crypto Punk which is now holding on their corporate …


Startup Digest Reading List - DeFi Eats CeFi, Evaluating Job Offerings, and FTX by the Numbers

OnlyFans banned explicit content on their site (the overwhelming majority of their content?) due to pressures from their payment processor (Mastercard). Coinbase is purchasing $500M of digital assets on their corporate balance sheet and investing 10% of their…


Startup Digest Reading List - Psychology of collecting NFT's, Partner Banks, and Coinbase Earnings

Reddit raised a $410M Series F with a valuation of $10B by Fidelity.A hacker exploited PolyNetwork (a cross-chain bridge connecting Polygon, Binance Chain, Neo, etc.) and stole $600M in assets, and then returned it all back.Coinbase reported earnings of $2B i…


Startup Digest Reading List - FTX Speedrun, Stablecoins, and Why Investors Say No

Square acquired AfterPay (a buy now pay later BNPL company) for $29B in an all stock deal, which was about 25% of the total value of Square. It’s a huge deal and Afterpay has 98K merchants in its network doing ~$21B in GMV.Robinhood, the king of meme stock tr…