My teenage nephews’ digital habits

One of my favorite activities as a startup founder is talking to customers or potential customers to understand how I can create something to make their lives easier. Now that I’m not working on anything specific, I’d still like to have some of these conversations and force myself to think about them. I was home … Continue reading My teenage nephews’ digital habits

The “Full-Stack Startup” and Jiro’s Dreams of Sushi

Five years ago, Chris Dixon coined the “Full-Stack Startup” to describe the new wave of companies like Uber looking to upend entire industries through building a new, vertically-integrated stack. The basic idea is this. Traditionally, as startup founders we see ourselves as toolmakers because we build software and that’s what software is best suited for. … Continue reading The “Full-Stack Startup” and Jiro’s Dreams of Sushi

What startups get wrong about public relations

This article was originally written for MarTech Series in April 2018. I changed the title and I’m re-posting it here. Hope you like it! If you are looking for media coverage, you’ve come to the right place. Successful PR is simple. Here are the steps. Generate interesting stories consistently. Pitch your stories to writers who … Continue reading What startups get wrong about public relations

What will it take for us to trust Facebook again?

Are we about to see a Facebook bank run? Building trust is hard because trust has to be built incrementally, and it only takes one (perceived) mistake to undo years of trust-building. Facebook is very publicly dealing with this issue today, but the problem they face goes beyond locking down developer access to user data and … Continue reading What will it take for us to trust Facebook again?

A San Franciscan tries the future of mobility — LimeBike, SPIN, Bird, and JUMP Bike

When I moved from Taipei to Los Angeles at the age of 11, I had already heard much about “America” and how it’s the best country in the world. My dad and I got off the airplane, got in a car, and went on the 405. I saw the vast freeway traversing through bald, brown … Continue reading A San Franciscan tries the future of mobility — LimeBike, SPIN, Bird, and JUMP Bike

How Facebook saved the news industry

Mark Zuckerberg’s news feed in 2006 (source: Slate) Last Friday, Facebook’s Head of News Feed Adam Mosseri announced that Facebook will begin prioritizing content created by friends and family over content from the media, brands and other Pages since space in the News Feed is limited. This is a good long-term move for Facebook and I … Continue reading How Facebook saved the news industry

Privilege and inequality in Silicon Valley

Why “few successful startup founders grew up desperately poor” My co-founder David and I both grew up in poverty and can call ourselves “battle-tested” when it comes to both life and startups, so when the talk in the Valley turned to income inequality, our ears perked up. For a moment, our two worlds were colliding. … Continue reading Privilege and inequality in Silicon Valley