So my first prediction about the future of web startups is pretty straightforward: there will be a lot of them. When starting a startup was expensive, you had to get the permission of investors to do it. Now the only threshold you have to get over is whether you have the courage to.
Risk is always proportionate to reward. The way to get really big returns is to do things that seem crazy, like starting a new search engine in 1998, or turning down a billion dollar acquisition offer.
and it seems to me that the increasing cheapness of web startups will if anything increase the importance of startup hubs. The value of startup hubs, like centers for any kind of business, lies in something very old-fashioned: face to face meetings.
If it gets easier to start a startup, then it’s not just easier for you, but for competitors too. That doesn’t erase the advantage of increased cheapness, however. You’re not all playing a zero-sum game. There’s not some fixed number of startups that can succeed, regardless of how many are started.
Performance is always the ultimate test, but there are so many kinks in the plumbing now that most people are insulated from it most of the time. So you end up with a world in which high school students think they need to get good grades to get into elite colleges, and college students think they need to get good grades to impress employers, within which the employees waste most of their time in political battles, and from which consumers have to buy anyway because there are so few choices. Imagine if that sequence became a big, straight pipe. Then the effects of being measured by performance would propagate all the way back to high school, flushing out all the arbitrary stuff people are measured by now. That is the future of web startups.
Sehr lesenswerter Essay: Paul Graham: The Future of Web Startups
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