The focus areas of the firm’s START program span 6 categories: American Dynamism, Consumer, Enterprise, Fintech, Games, and “Other” - largely matching the different focuses of their individual funds, and keeping a unique focus on Fintech.
The Bottom Line
The key differences here are, that a16z has not disclosed what stake it will take for this investment. In comparison, the YC takes a 7% standard stake. Another difference is that START is taking in applicants on a rolling basis, rather than only twice a year in batches as the YC does. a16z START is also notably remote, and geography-agnostic, possibly inspired by YC's success in their remote batches since 2020.
The similarities so far show that both a16z and YC look to leverage network effects on top of the funding to help their portfolio companies get to market, and expand quicker than they would have without their network of partners, advisors, cohort members, and so on.
Twitter is the social media platform many love for its unique offering. You may share anything with the world as long as your message is 280 characters in length. It used to be less than that – a smart feature that allowed the platform to save on some server costs. As time went by, the platform quickly became a beacon of free speech and facilitated a quick spread of information without the noise. As we might remember, however, one politician abused it, leading to the permanent ban on his account.
Twitter’s reaction was quite fast: the company adopted a measure called the “poison pill” (the technical term is the “shareholder rights plan”). How does it work? Imagine your name is Jeff and you have 15% of shares (fifteen shares) in a company X. You want to acquire more shares, to possibly gain 51% (fifty-one shares) of them. Let’s say the company X decided to use the “shareholder rights plan” as a defense mechanism. The board of directors then go ahead and say that if anybody has more than 15% of the company, they will issue one free share, exceptfor you. So then simple math happens. The total number of shares is 85 × 2 + 15 = 170. Your 15% just went down to 8.1%. This forces the “hostile” third party to negotiate, and take a step back.
His private wealth skyrocketed to an astronomical ~$270 billion US dollars, showing an increase of more than 1,000% in a single year(!). Even though the majority of this money is tied up in the form of shares in various companies, the unimaginable amount of money is nevertheless enough to buy one of the biggest social media giants in the world, Twitter.
While the offer is called by some as “unsolicited”, Twitter’s board will have to come up with a superb reason to turn the offer down. Especially, that, per the letter that found itself in the SEC filing, “[m]y offer [Elon Musk’s proposal] is my best and final offer and if it is not accepted, I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder.” Whether they have a great reason or not, the social media giant rejected the offer, and instead chose to use the “poison pill.” This is a powerful measure, that the companies in the US may use, to deter any potential hostile third-parties. Whether Musk likes it or not, he will have to negotiate with the current board of directors.
We have waited for the RC of the framework for a little while now, and it’s finally here. Even though it is not the final version, it is nevertheless a significant milestone, as “this release is covered by a “go live” support policy, meaning .NET MAUI is supported by Microsoft for your production apps.”
Just as a reminder, Xamarin.Forms developers should not have a lot of difficulty switching over. All the old components are there, along with some new ones, such as BlazorWebView.
.NET MAUI is an effort of Microsoft to unify all cross-platform functionalities, and APIs, of Xamarin.Forms under one name. The time will show whether the switch to the different naming will work, though the new name should make things easier for developers. Windows, macOS, iOS, or Android: it’s all there.
BlazorWebView is another reason to get excited. We may now “incorporate Blazor components or entire Blazor applications to distribute the same experiences on desktop and mobile as you may today on web.”
The speed improvement introduced in the newest iteration of .NET 7 are another free win, app developers get out of the box. No changes, instant improvements, are just what everybody likes.
Developing Web3 In A Web3 Way With Filebase
Building Web3 apps, you might be prompted to use traditional Web2 ways of hosting your app and storing your data. They are inherently error-prone (though cloud providers do guarantee an uptime of almost 100%), and locked to a certain region (though you may duplicate your database across regions). Filebase allows you to develop your Web3 apps in a more “native” way. The organization does that by providing a single S-3 compatible API, making decentralized storage feel familiar and easy to use.
Bucket level access keys: Users will be able to create a pair of access keys specific to individual buckets, in addition to their account’s root-level access key pair that can access all buckets on the account.
Folder level IPFS CIDs: Users will be able to upload folders on IPFS and reference objects in those folders using the IPFS CID of the folder and the object’s key.
The Bottom Line
A good way to win over the hearts of developers is to make your solution feel like something they have already used. That’s Filebase’s approach, though it’s a bit tricky: it has to be more or less the same as the already familiar option. It may not be too different, or too error-prone. By making themselves more like AWS, they chose the high-risk, high-reward way. Succeed, and reap benefits. Fail, and be heavily burned.
Competition breeds innovation, and no other competition than healthy competition does that. Delivering a mid-shelf phone with a great camera, and a custom AI chip will be hard to beat for many companies. Samsung did start releasing the so-called “Fan Edition” phones, though we may expect the 6a to cost far less than, e.g., the Galaxy S21 FE.
The space of mid-tier phones is getting increasingly crowded, which pushes manufacturers for more and more innovation at a stable price. It is interesting to see how the race for an average customer, from the global West, unfolds.
360° IT Check is a weekly publication where we bring you the latest and greatest in the world of tech. We cover topics like emerging technologies & frameworks, news about innovative startups, and other topics which affect the world of tech directly or indirectly.