Great book that goes into great detail on the highs and lows of starting a business and how to run it. Pretty much cemented the idea that I will never start a business.
Something about the Ninety-ninety rule seems appropriate here:
I think self driving cars are much closer to 10 years out than the "today" that the author asserts, but I think everyone agree's that we've reached the point where they are coming no matter what.
To give the author credit I went into reading this thinking he was absurd but he does make a good point, some of the points I think are over sold, like planned obsolescence but I think his thesis is sound.
One point I'll make on Uber's behalf......
Two of my all time favorite books are:
This history of Go computing.
and Ben Horowitz The hard thing about hard things.
Both do a very good job of bringing the reader into the chaotic environment that occurs when startups are in trouble and both have a very similar message. When startups get in trouble having very powerful investors and mentors can make a huge difference.
Uber has some very influential backers. See:
If/When times get tough, they have people who have a vested interest in seeing them succeed. People who can get them talking to the correct people at the car manufacturers to convince them to use Uber's platform over an internally created one.
If self driving laws drag on many years before they are settled then Uber may be fucked in the end but there isn't any reason why they can't be a cash printing machine over the next 10- 20 years while self driving cars replace humans.
As to car companies cutting out uber, there is this.....
1. It's really hard to do.
2. Few people have themselves been trained on management.
3. Faced with 1 and 2, people focus on their own, more familiar personal deliverables.
Therefore, if you want things to change, you'll probably have to make some specific suggestions. And to do that, you should do some homework. I highly recommend starting with Managing Humans by Michael Lopp (http://www.amazon.com/Managing-Humans-Humorous-Software-Engi...) or maybe The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz (http://www.amazon.com/Hard-Thing-About-Things-Building/dp/00...). Spend an hour or two with each book and you'll have a better idea what can be done, and why.
What you're finding is that working as both a full-time manager and full-time engineer is very difficult, borderline impossible. Eventually, you'll have to choose. An increasing number of small companies are starting to understand this reality, and allow their top people to grow into either technical leadership or management leadership roles. Expecting both, simultaneously, is not realistic.
The book is not focused on failures, but it's full of really good advices on what to do when a company is moving into disaster.
- The Martian (http://www.amazon.com/The-Martian-Novel-Andy-Weir-ebook/dp/B...)
- Zero to One (http://www.amazon.com/Zero-One-Notes-Startups-Future/dp/0804...)
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things (http://www.amazon.com/The-Hard-Thing-About-Things/dp/0062273...)
This is going to sound cliched, but the best way is to start your own company or project from scratch and apply the concepts you learn from these resources.
Here are some "bestsellers", apart from http://startupclass.samaltman.com and PG's essays are
* Design Sprints by Google Ventures: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=design+sprints
* Startup School Office Hours: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=startup+school+...
* Interface Design for Startups https://courses.platzi.com/classes/interface-design-startups...
* The Design of Everyday Things: http://www.amazon.com/Design-Everyday-Things-Donald-Norman/d...
* Don't make me Think: http://www.amazon.in/Dont-Make-Me-Think-Usability/dp/0321344...
* Objectified: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1241325/
* Either Rework or Getting Real by 37 Signals
1. The Lean Startup: http://theleanstartup.com/book
2. Lean Analytics: http://leananalyticsbook.com/
3. Business Model Generation: http://www.businessmodelgeneration.com/
* How to Win Friends and Influence People
* The Hard Thing about Hard Things: http://www.amazon.com/The-Hard-Thing-About-Things/dp/0062273...
* The Startup of You: http://www.thestartupofyou.com/
* Build an audience before you launch the product - like 37Signals, Jeff Atwood and Joel Spolsky, Hubspot
* Traction Book: http://tractionbook.com/
* Be Creative - Each startup is different. There's no silver bullet
The sales course by Steli Efti: http://close.io/free-sales-course/
Dave McClure: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=dave+mcclure+st...
Founder Interviews, stories:
* PandoMonthly: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=pandomonthly
* Stanford ECorner: ecorner.stanford.edu
Horowitz in "the hard thing about hard things" has a chapter called "the most difficult CEO skill". Starts with:
"By far the most difficult skill I learned as CEO was the ability to manage my own psychology."
Plus, friendships can often lead to far greater payoffs in the long-term -- I've given and received many introductions to stellar employees among my circle of friends; having a reputation as a robber is the fastest way to stop this flow of introductions.
OT: Ben has a lot of really great material on his blog, and I'd highly recommend anyone who hasn't yet to read through everything! He also has a great book that compiles all his wisdom into one place ; if you're too busy to read it I've shared my notes on Evernote .
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