Writing Review for Weeks of Nov 12 & 19, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving! As another year comes to a close, it is always great to refocus on what we are thankful for each year.

Amazon did exactly what it should have with its HQ2 process

An argumentative essay that largely agrees with Amazon’s process for selecting its HQ2. Such location decisions are almost always the exclusive province of boards of directors, but Amazon did open it up a bit to offer politicians an opportunity to make their pitch. Maybe people didn’t like the process, or thought it was sickening how much cities were willing to fight for jobs (I don’t understand that personally). In the end though, it is great that cities had any input at all on a private corporate matter.

Open

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Writing Review for Weeks of Oct 29 & Nov 5, 2018

Damn good writing productivity this week if I do say so myself. A set of five articles packaged as part of a new content experiment at TechCrunch, a book review, and two more editions of TechCrunch’s Equity podcast.

Package: SoftBank and Form Ds

Daily Digest: Technology and tyranny, lying to ourselves, and Spotify’s $1b repurchase

SoftBank’s debt obsession

The disappearing Form D

Japan is cracking down on SoftBank’s revenue

Rakuten has SoftBank in its sights

A set of five columns focused on SoftBank’s financial performance and Form Ds, which are the filings that startups typically submit to the SEC when they take venture capital. SoftBank loves debt, but yet has managed to continue to outperform on operating income growth, while

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Writing Review for Weeks of Oct 15 & 22, 2018

Another busy two weeks (I repeat that a lot). I got the chance to review State Tectonics by Malka Older, cover a few news stories, and host TC Equity, the podcast that talks shop about VC.

In State Tectonics, an explosive ending for the future of democracy

Malka Older’s science fiction novel State Tectonics is an incredible romp through the future of democracy and politics. It’s filled with great vignettes, and has a thriller plot line as well. The characters are perhaps a bit underdeveloped, but in the end, people read speculative fiction for the speculation, and State Tectonics offers it in spades.

MIT announces new college of computing with $1 billion commitment

Major news story from MIT, which is going to put

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Writing Review for Weeks of Oct 1 & 8, 2018

As always, a busy two weeks as we head into the fall.

NYC wants to build a cyber army

A deep dive into New York City’s new cybersecurity ecosystem initiatives. The city wants to be one of the global hubs for the industry, since most of the major customers that use this software are based locally. These sorts of initiatives are tricky to get right, but the hope here is that the combination of an incubator, education initiatives, sales accelerators and co-working/community space can catalyze the industry against other leading cities like Boston, Washington DC, and Tel Aviv.

Blood capital, WeWork whisperings, and gobs of cash for smiles and vegetables

Elon’s sick burn, Coinbase funding rumors and VC hiring trends

Two more

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Writing Review for Week of Sept 24, 2018

This has been another really busy week.

The death of once high-flying VC funds

This was an in-depth look at the failures of four well-known VC firms in Silicon Valley. All four were widely popular with the press, and all four have all but ceased to exist just a couple of years later. What happened? The essential story here is that there really aren't all that many similarities. Much as the families of Anna Karenina are each unhappy in their own ways, each of these funds faced different issues which caused their undoing. Crazily enough, some of these funds may still turn out to have blockbuster returns.

China splits the internet while the U.S. dithers

One challenge that is not widely understood remains the

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