Lambda School Pt. 2-1: Category

Intro I wanted to add an update to my intro from my last post in this series, in which I said Lambda School had raised $4M in financing. About a month ago, they announced that they closed another $14M in Series A funding, led by Google with participation from Stripe and others. Before we head on, I’ll…

Lambda School Pt. 1: Consumers

Introduction: Here begins the series of posts analyzing Lambda School, as outlined in my last post. By way of introduction, Lambda School is a Y-Combinator-backed startup that aims to upskill untapped talent to participate in the tech industry. They’ve raised ~$4M and are currently offering intensive courses on computer science, data science, iOS development, Android…

Thinking about Apps Inside of VR

In late November of last year, I tweeted a bite-sized view of what I think the future of VR (I’ll use the term VR as inclusive of AR) will look like: The point of this post is to expand a bit more on why I believe this to be true and what needs to happen…

Let’s talk about the Apple Keynote

This is my first Tuesday post ever, deviating from my normal post days of Mondays and Thursdays. I’ve decided to try a variable publishing schedule if I miss one of my regular days but have a good idea later. So here goes! I was deeply underwhelmed by the Apple Keynote this year, and have been…

Our Failed Age of Exploration

I’ve been reading Jon Gertner’s The Idea Factory lately; it documents the history of Bell Labs, an R&D facility shared by AT&T and Western Electric that was directly or indirectly responsible for a number of innovations in telecom. Bell Labs researchers created transistors, signal extenders, and Unix, among other things. They developed the foundations of…

Request for Startup: Forum

I love Twitter, but the public markets do not. Like other consumer tech companies, investors have valued Twitter based on two interlinked factors: user growth and ad sales. Seeing as Twitter added zero users last quarter, it’s easy to understand why investors are a bit irked; in fact, they were so irked that the firm’s price…

3 Questions To Test Contrarian Ideas

In the course of my work, I often think about what makes things insightful or compelling. Despite the nuances and complexity that necessarily go into making ideas truly interesting, I believe I’ve found a meaningful shorthand for determining whether an idea is truly new or fresh. I was mainly inspired by Roger Martin’s “The First…

MAYA: Most Advanced Yet Acceptable

First off, I’d like to wish you a happy new year! Here’s hoping 2017 treats you well; may you find what you seek. To start this year off, I’m following up on last year’s “familiar with a twist” piece. As it so happens, an industrial designer named Raymond Loewy came up with a theory surrounding…

How to Make Anything Interesting: Familiar With A Twist

At work, I’ve been working on a project for a major food producer and have gotten to learn about some fascinating trends in the industry. One of the most powerful of these trends is “familiar with a twist,” which refers to an old favorite that has one or two distinct changes. Examples include adding Korean BBQ…

Why Does Lateral Thinking Create Innovation?

Lateral thinking, first coined by Edward de Bono in 1967, refers to the practice of starting from a known idea and jumping out to solutions that might seem illogical at first glance. Rather than following step-by-step reason, lateral thinking relies on breaking traditional modes of thought. As such, lateral thinking stems from divergent thinking, the related…