I’m a Partner at Contrary. Backed by the founders of Tesla, Reddit, and many more iconic companies, we identify top talent and invest in companies they start or join.
I sometimes write or host discussions about things that interest me. Broadly speaking, that includes startups, investing, software, psychology, evolutionary biology, politics. I recommend these favorite reads.
I have several business I would like to incubate. If you are looking to start a venture-scale company and need guidance, please reach out.
Below are posts I’ve written for my blog or major online publications. If you’re hit with a paywall, contact me and I can send a copy.
First Principles Interviewing how to hire for insight rather than experience by asking the right questions
Opportunities (and challenges) in church tech part two of the church tech TC series
Jesus, SaaS, and Digital Tithing a TechCrunch article about the church tech market
Voodoo Games: Three Narrative Violations my TechCrunch piece about how Voodoo upends recent startup trends
Venture Investing in Eldertech my TechCrunch piece about trends and opportunities in eldertech
Creating Product Stickiness how businesses can become more defensible… out of thin air
Reinventing the Wheel why anti-tech pessimists think the way they do, and how to reverse-engineer that
2019 University Report a ranking and analysis of the top entrepreneurial ecosystems in the US
Analyzing Venture Opportunities Part 2: Thinking About People a list of things to consider when evaluating or pitching a team
Why Ownership Graphs Matter hidden complexity in politics and an interesting idea
Social Spaces on the Internet a handful of trends that will help shape social spaces online
The Paradox of Compound Interest saving and spending when opportunity cost compounds too
Getting Good at Startups general principles on becoming a good founder or investor as a student
3 Questions on Tech Companies a few brief thoughts on moats, successful teams, and evaluating people
Request for Startups a list of companies I’d start in another life
Competition Matters Less in Software what makes tech companies unique?
Senior: My Time at Umbrella some learnings from working at Umbrella
When Insiders Were Outsiders stories of people who hustled and struggled their way to where they are now
Notes on The Elephant in the Brain some context and notes on one of my favorite reads
Concise Ideas are One-Dimensional should we think about nuanced ideas where concision rules?
Worldview as Competitive Advantage do the typical value-add dimensions really matter for most investors?
Degrees of Freedom don’t make your startup’s gameplan needlessly complex
Buying IBM examples of upside/downside asymmetry
Go-To Essays and Books what I like to re-read and recommend
Getting Positive Feedback tips for founders who get really positive feedback in early validation efforts
Psychology in Product and Sales a list of concepts in social psychology with examples
Decision Making and Mental Models a toolkit for thinking more clearly and making better decisions
What Do You Optimize For? balancing serendipity and focus for optimal results
Simpson’s Paradox and Thinking Rationally in Venture Capital how empiricism and pattern recognition can go wrong
Existential Risk and Effective Altruism a primer on a fascinating concept in ethical philosophy
Analyzing Venture Opportunities Part 1: The Product and Market a list of things founders should always touch on when explaining their startup
The Flawed Economics of Robinhood: Why Users Are Better Off Without It the reasons why Robinhood’s business model is misaligned with users’ needs
A Clever Malware Tactic and Why There’s Nothing You Can Do About It how I came across an innovative scam
My App Marketing Story: 0 to 100k Downloads the strategy and tactics I used to successfully publish an Android app