Discover more from P.S. You Should Know...
P.S. You Should Know... | Issue #303
We're bringing emojis back in 2023! 😉
my story 🚀
i’ve been thinking 💭
Substack offers some neat newsletter features, so let’s make the most of them. Here are some ways you can participate this week:
Click the 💟 heart icon at the top or bottom of this email to send good vibes.
Click the 💬 comment icon (next to the heart icon) to share a thought about anything in this email. It’ll be public. A bunch of other subscribers will see it. Maybe it’ll even turn into a conversion.
I’m conducting a poll, requested by a subscriber, below. Help ‘em out please!
fun facts 🙌
JPMorgan’s $175 million oops. “That is, in some sense, JPMorgan paid Frank [the startup it acquired] $175 million for an email list. … It went poorly.” In their defense (hah, not really) there were 4.3 millions of those emails. Unfortunately they were emails bought from a broker for $100k then enriched “use “synthetic data” techniques to create 4.265 million customer names, email addresses, birthdays, and other personal information.” ~ learn more
Amateur solves 20,000-year Ice Age drawings mystery. “The team's findings were published in the Cambridge Archeological Journal. Prof Paul Pettitt, of Durham University, said he was "glad he took it seriously" when Mr Bacon contacted him.” ~ learn more
Car tires produce vastly more particle pollution than exhausts. Oh my! “Toxic particles from tyre wear almost 2,000 times worse than from exhausts as weight of cars increases” ~ learn more
oh, austin 🤠
Austinites retell history as they know it on iconic South Congress. “New Austinites might be surprised to find what this part of town used to be, but those that have lived in the city for decades still remember a very different South Congress experience.” ~ learn more
tech, startups, internet ⚡
Why generative AI is mostly a bad VC bet. From the highly credible Rob May, investor in 100+ AI companies. His point is that there’s little defensibility for most of these companies. First, before there are no barriers to entry. Second, the foundational models that these companies rely on may soon become their competitors. The latter remains a big risk for Austin-based unicorn Jasper, despite them rocketing to early success on the back of GPT-3. Notwithstanding all that, there are still plenty of businesses to be built here that need neither venture scale nor venture cash to make a great profit for founders. ~ learn more
IOT finally coming to your toilet. Device maker Withings announced their U-Scan urinalysis hardware at CES this month. They’ll be available for sale to Europeans later this year, and Americans someday (pending FDA clearance). To quote my 2018 self: “I’ve been talking for some time about a future where toilets regularly capture and send you data about your health.” This could someday pair nicely with the GutLab™️ from BiomeSense to get all our critical bathroom data. ~ learn more
Microsoft’s full circle. Stratechery highlights the excellent strategic position that Microsoft has created after losing their Windows dominance. “Moreover, it seems likely this empire will be more durable than the old Microsoft republic: the entire reason why Windows faltered as a strategic linchpin is that it was tied to a device — the PC — that was disrupted by a paradigm shift in hardware. Microsoft 365, on the other hand, is attached to the customer.” ~ learn more
better doing 🎯
Titles. Gokul Rajaram, whose LinkedIn profile shows him as “Product and Business Helper” at Doordash, advises CEOs at the earliest stages of companies to hold the line on titles. Oh, he’s also a Board Member at Pinterest and Coinbase and a distinguished individual investor. ~ learn more
under the microscope 🔬
Longevity Escape Velocity Foundation gets to work. “Controversial anti-aging proponent Aubrey de Grey has started a new "Longevity Escape Velocity Foundation," and is kicking off its first experiment, using a combination of therapies in an effort to radically extend the lives of middle-aged mice.” ~ learn more
Boiling peanuts drives better results in oral immunotherapy treatments. “At the end of the 52-week trial, 80% of the cohort were successfully tolerating the target of safely eating nearly a dozen roasted peanuts a day.” ~ learn more
big ideas 📚
The dystopia we fear is keeping us from the utopia we deserve. Ezra Klein makes the point that we got carried away with the “reduce” part of reduce, reuse, recycle. Our per capita energy use in the US has decreased since 1979. It’s not a coincidence that most tech innovation since then has been built with energy-efficiency in mind. But with the coming age of clean, cheap, limitless energy (hello, fusion!) it’s time to broaden our energy ambitions once again! ~ learn more
on the blockchain ⛓
FTX founder-sociopath puts on a straight face and starts writing. If he clearly weren’t so full of it, this might almost sound reasonable. As of this writing over 200 people have “liked” it, which should frighten us given his inevitable jury trial. ~ learn more
thanks for reading!
Thanks for reading P.S. You Should Know...! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.