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(Source: The New York Times)
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Square, Chairman of Twitter
This man continues to be my biggest inspiration in tech. From a FastCo article here.
I like that the NYTimes used the word “dream” here. I think no other word communicates the amount of idealism and motivation (to reach that ideal) that seems to be ubiquitous in the Silicon Valley and other tech circles outside of it. This idealism is what draws me to the field in the first place. People in technology startups are, for the most part, refreshingly uninhibited by the suppression of the status quo. As Steve Jobs said:
Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
This dogma is the framework outside of which the tech community works. I suppose it’s silly to note that the very definition of technology implies progress outside of the status quo - a level of attainment that surpasses current capabilities of humanity and its present instruments and utilities. This article emphasizes that there is a place out there for the dreamers, the people who are willing to work hard to make a vision a reality. I hope that I can look back at pieces like this and Jobs’ Stanford speech every time I second-guess my ambition to found a company of my own. These people do good work, push boundaries and witness profound results. We should all want to do that in whatever job we seek.
Couple of things about this article:
Houston is valued at 600 million. For comparison, Twitter and Square cofounder, Jack Dorsey - that’s right, the creator and now Exec. Chairman of Twitter, and CEO of Square respectively - is only worth 330 million (estimated). Crazy.
Houston started programming when he was FIVE??? I want to know what kind of languages these whiz kids that pop-up in the news are ascertaining and problem solving with when they’re five years old.
Love Houston’s ambition. Pretty crazy that he seems to have had zero interest in selling to Apple or Google, even with a persuasive pitch from Jobs himself.
Houston’s a Windows guy. I think producing such a great product from a windows computer deserves an overcoming adversity award (only slightly kidding).
Fred Wilson comments on the inanity behind one of the biggest current issues with obtaining desired media: availability. He discusses how he and his wife tried to watch a movie but found nothing satisfying because many legal online options are limiting in their selection. With this problem, he’s showing that accessibility is one of the biggest driving forces behind content piracy. The mindset becomes “I can’t find this in a legal and simple fashion, so I suppose I’ll torrent/pirate it. That way it’s conveniently at my disposal AND I get exactly what I’m looking for.”
It boggles my mind that media content providers, knowing how much piracy is an issue aren’t SCRAMBLING to take the steps to prevent it. The current generation of internet users is growing up on an expectation that content should be easily available. And yet, here are major content “providers” making everyone jump through a hoop to get what IS available, and limiting the options still.
No wonder SOPA is so poorly written - it’s driven by the same idiots losing their own industry.