Live interview: Marc Andreessen and Reid Hoffman, Co-Founder of LinkedIn | Code 2017

00:10
both for a long
00:13
many many debates with each of them is
00:16
really one of them named Marc Andreessen
00:19
for a long time now so let’s bring them
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out Marc Andreessen and Reid Hoffman
00:24
[Applause]
00:31
you don’t
00:33
oh hello so I you know he was Marc
00:39
Andreessen has this habit of texting me
00:41
really rude things almost continually
00:42
and while I was sitting backstage within
00:45
10 feet of him he was tweeting at me
00:46
about that last talk so what did you I
think it’s very important because I
think Facebook is sucking the life out
of us
so what do you think that’s the
opening question outstanding uh so it’s
just sitting facebook director I think I
did I politely decline to answer
but oh
me let me jet let me generalize out so
this is something that one hears about
01:07
the internet a very son that’s the one
01:09
hears about the internet a lot so we
01:11
start by saying that that gentleman I’m
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sure he’s doing fantastic work and he
01:14
clearly means well I really really
deeply disagree with everything
he just
said and the reason is because not just
because I had some role in creating the
whole thing but but a friend of mine Oh
Cronin who works in VR and is the
advanced thinker on these things has a
term he uses called reality privilege
and so it’s a view from the from the box
seats it’s the view from it’s a view
from places in the world that’s exactly
the kind of you get from places in the
world in which there are super rich real
world experiences to have right and so
you grow up an upper-middle class
community probably on the coast you have
these incredible schools you have these
incredible and rich activities you have
all these after-school activities
you’ve
always incredible people to talk to you
go to a college campus you get to you
know you get to hang out with all these
incredible super geniuses for the point
zero zero one percent of the population
of the world who gets to do all those
things then this internet thing is a big
step down for everybody else the
Internet is a giant step up right most
people
don’t have that level of reality
privilege like most people grow up in
places where there’s a much higher level
of what you might call intellectual
deprivation there’s just not that many
people around to talk to there’s just
not that many interesting things being
discussed there’s not that many great
experiences to have it’s hard to learn
new things the schools aren’t good I
mean all kind of you know most kids in
the world don’t even go to school like
or go to school up to the grade four
grade six to grade eight
it just can’t
progress beyond that point because
there’s there’s nothing locally there’s
there’s there’s just no local system
infrastructure or community to be able
to engage on ideas and so the internet
represents a giant level up on all those
topics for most the world and I think
it’s a fantastic thing
okay well then find snapchat for
everybody so read you like to oh well so
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look I think that it’s it’s correct that
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there is various forms of kind of call
it commercial system biases to come out
which is companies try to say look when
you want to occupy a bunch of time so we
try to figure out how to have that time
be occupied
and this is the similar true
this range is everything from the
agriculture industry which says will eat
more sugar like you have these
commercial biases the whole way through
and we adjust them now that being said
the overall system is better and we can
tune it right and so I think that the
one of the other things frequently is
not realizing there’s things you can do
to change for more of the that kind of
the good and they and and the bad and
these things and and obviously I am less
focused at the moment on questions
around the auto play
or kind of
equivalent and I’m more focused on
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questions about like how do we get to
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discernment of truth and how do we get
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like you know truth media and what is
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this whole fake news and all you know
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facts and all that kind of stuff and
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that is I think a much more deep issue
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that I’m focused on at the moment well I
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think one of the things that one of the
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reasons I wanted to have these two was
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one because you make investments you
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change companies you decide you make a
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lot of decisions that impact other
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people too you’re you’re super
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argumentative and debating about what
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where that’s going you know where it
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happened and I wanted people get a sense
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from both of you of how where innovation
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is going how it’s going because you’re
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in none in charge of it but very
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influential to the process both of you
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in different ways so let’s start on that
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idea that you just talked about which
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brings in all of socially I’m not going
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to pull out facebook but at all social
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media the idea is something I’ve been
railing on recently for some reason is
that responsibility the social
responsibility the the civil
responsibility of social media companies
and other companies in Silicon Valley to
not to stop pretending these platforms
are benign
so as someone who’s created
these platforms each of you each of you
is on your part how do you look at them
now because I think they’ve morphed in
ways some people think social medias
become weaponized some people think
other things but that that take mark and
Marco Decker Brady’s been talking about
this a lot the idea of the
responsibility so how do you look at
where we are right now
for Silicon Valley why don’t we start
with you mark Ari how do you look okay
05:02
I’m happy to start okay look so I think
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that the question is is that we had
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presumed that broad brush that most
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people could kind of make assert a ssin
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of truth within their kind of normal set
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and I think actually in fact it is
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somewhat hackable it’s it’s filter
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bubbles is one of the things that people
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talk about a lot in the valley and kind
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of how do you make sure that you’re not
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blinded by it you have communications
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that go across that there’s questions
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about assertion of you know what is the
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most relevant fact or in you know I
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don’t think there is any such thing as
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an alternative fact I mean I think
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that’s that’s that’s that’s George
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Orwell and and Aldous Huxley speak but
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the but I think that the question is
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okay how do we help people figure out
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better guideposts to the truth because
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simply being as part of the feed on the
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screen sometimes is treated as too much
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of that must be true and so what I think
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is good is is I think the whole industry
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and I’ve been part of a number of
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conversations about ok what are the
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right ways to do that and part of the
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reason why they try to say it’s more
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platform I don’t know if it’s trying to
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say it’s benign is they’re trying to say
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we’re not trying to impose a point of
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view
we’re trying to help you get to
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truth oh it’s kind of classic like what
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is the algorithm part of it and and so I
06:23
think that there’s a lot of thinking now
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about like what are the different ways
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we can do that one of the things that I
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think is is important is perhaps
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building that out of the kinds of things
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we trust like we trust other people and
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can we get to some kind of version of ok
06:39
I know this kind of information is much
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more contentious there’s a lot of people
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who disagree with it this kind of
06:44
information is is something that I can
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rely upon more and I think we need to
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get to that kind of scoring system and I
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think we need to make it simple enough
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that it helps unify discourse across the
06:54
country how do you look at this so I
06:57
think truth has become shorthand for
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things that people on the coasts believe
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ok and fake news or false whatever
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alternative facts has become shorthand
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for people things that people in the
07:06
center of the country believe I think
07:07
this whole topic is gone completely off
of based on how in the wake of the
election so if you read the
coastal press which is generally
spectacular job I think I’m covering the
election last year but if you just read
the press in aggregate
where all the
stories the overwhelming thing that you
were carried away with was there is no
way on earth a Donald Trump can win this
election right it’s impossible you did
your the fantastic editor of the New
York Times up here on stage today they
had the day of the election they had
Hillary that morning at 92 92 percent
outs winning
election I saw the 92
percent out so it actually turned out if
you actually wanted to if you actually
wanted last year in 2016 to read the
story of the election actually get the
truth you read breitbart
now nobody
wants to hear that because we all like
have concluded that right Bart is like
absurd right-wing propaganda and that
somehow you know the tradition of the
coastal press is somehow the truth but
like it just like de bossed early last
year that was not true
so I just think
we all just need to take a step back on
this idea that there’s absolute truth
and that somehow we somehow have some
sort of monopoly or preferential access
07:58
to it and the rest of these people kind
07:59
of don’t understand anything
by the way it’s a surefire way to lose
elections because if Democrats are ever
going to lose elections are ever going
to win elections again in the center of
the country in the south of the country
they have to show up the some message
other than you’re all a bunch of morons

that’s not going to work that’s not
that’s not what the point is are these
you can split this and that is the
message yes I think that’s what’s being
heard yes but that’s an easy shorthand
way of saying no matter what they say on
the left though either coast is untrue
you can say untruth to people and get
them to vote a certain way
I mean
there’s it’s very you know you know if
you want if you want if you like your
health care plan you can keep it
right
right Obama 2008 right Obama care like
how’s that how’s that well I’m gonna
come in a close I’m gonna quote I’m
gonna close Guantanamo on my first year

in office you do it like for some reason
but the fact that politicians break
promises to us is not it’s not a very
big if you read the press coverage of
those promises at the time they were
presented as truth they were presented
as yes these are absolutely things that
are going to happen like there was there
were reams of coverage around Obama care
of how well it was going to work right
for news coverage over what is the
responsibility these platforms do they
have any because because Dean would say
no he said no they’re just there as
platforms he didn’t he thought the New
York Times that our responsibility they
necessarily don’t do you imagine all the
all these technology platforms have any
social responsibility mark has been
talking about it a lot he’s been
visiting lots of the country he’s been
petting livestock quite a bit

which is nice do you know how fluffy
cows are that they are apparently how’s
our super high I have been around many
cows I am aware of cows but how do you
how do you look at that responsible
because everyone seems to be visiting
doing that kind of thing they are in
Silicon Valley how do you look at their
is there a social responsibility for
this technology now we’re all going
where I grew up I know it’s amazing
thing I’ve ever seen oh and you left
there not going back so I’m gonna
frustrate I’m gonna I’m gonna frustrate
I’m just not gonna I can’t I’m sitting
back for Facebook
I need a wet face but
I talked about that Facebook but just in
general like as technology evolves do
you think that Silicon Valley needs to
have more of a social conscience so I
think it’s definitely a good idea for
businesses to have social conscience and
again this is where I would say I
believe there is much more but it’s
become very trendy to claim that Silicon
Valley doesn’t have a social conscience
10:07
and it’s just the default assumption is
10:09
that all these companies are doing
10:10
horrible things all the time and I just
10:11
don’t think it’s true okay all right I
10:13
don’t think the situation is anywhere
10:14
near as polarized as people are
10:15
presenting it well people liked it but
10:17
by the way Silicon Valley just if I
10:18
could from Silicon Valley people Cuba
10:21
lead a very much good and you will so
10:23
two years ago two years ago two years
10:26
ago the conventional wisdom right around
10:27
or much of the rest of the country and
10:28
that you read actually frankly a lot of
10:30
the press coverage in Silicon Valley was
10:31
it’s this hotbed of like these crazy
10:33
libertarians like it’s these crazy
10:34
extreme outlier like you know fringe
10:36
elements and of course our friend Peter
10:37
was kind of always kind of held up as a
10:40
good friend Peter a very good friend
10:42
Peter actually was held up as kind of
10:44
representative of the valley right a
10:46
funny thing happened last year which was
10:48
it turns out that was fake news okay it
10:51
turns out that was not true in fact it
10:52
turns out the opposite is true which is
10:53
the 99.999% of so look about last year
10:57
voted for Hillary Clinton supported
10:58
Hillary Clinton donated to Hillary
10:59
Clinton like it was over it was like the
11:01
money difference I don’t know is like
11:02
some giant multiple money difference
11:04
basic is nobody nobody nobody here Trump
11:05
and so the valley not whole is it as
11:08
well by the way may point out you
11:09
tweeted I’m with her correct that is if
11:11
it is true I well I will concede to that
11:12
okay I subsequently believe Obama
11:14
subsequently deleted all my tweets
11:16
including that look after that okay um
11:18
so what about it I think Silicon Valley
11:21
not only has has a real sense of social
11:23
responsibility if anything Silicon
11:24
Valley’s all the way over on the other
11:25
side
11:26
silk valley is extremely left-wing
11:28
extremely liberal and actually think
11:30
this is now this is become part of the
11:32
problem it’s now you have the other
11:33
version of the problem which is actually
11:34
I
11:35
it’s really hard for a lot of people in
11:36
Silicon Valley even articulate the other
11:38
side at this at this point it’s hard to
11:40
even articulate the case for voting for
11:41
Donald Trump I think it’s hard to
11:42
articulate what people in the Midwest in
11:44
the south are thinking and I think this
11:45
polarization thing it’s the general
11:47
problem that I was talking about earlier
11:48
but I think that I think the valley is
11:51
part of the Coast polarizing from the
11:52
center of the country to a much greater
11:54
extreme than we’ve ever seen in our
11:55
lifetimes all right now and it this does
11:57
not left unchecked this does not have to
11:59
good places okay this is great because
12:00
you didn’t want to talk about politics
12:01
at all but great okay so you have been
12:04
very active yes in that left-wing cabal
12:07
apparently and that’s the way we’ve all
12:10
it’s it’s like a way it’s like nearly
12:12
everybody know it’s a cabal so talk
12:15
about what you’re doing cuz I think
12:16
people are people are looking to you lot
12:19
everyone says we’ve got to get Reid as
12:20
the leader of this though yes but I do I
12:23
do I don’t ya know so talk about what
12:26
you’re doing precisely with Mark Pincus
12:27
and others yeah so mark who’s here in
12:30
the audience he and I started talking
12:32
years ago about how do you essentially
12:34
try to create consumer no technologies
12:36
to help shape a kind of pro-business and
12:40
also Pro kind of social values future
12:42
and how do you put that together into a
12:44
moment because I actually think part of
12:45
the whole thing is to get the bridge
12:47
building to make the right thing and I
12:48
think part of the social responsibility
12:50
for these growing strength of tech
12:53
platforms is to make that happen so I
12:55
think there is I think there is
12:56
responsibility I think it’s a growing
12:58
sense of it and I think people are
12:59
trying to figure out what it means and
13:00
how to operationalize it the right way
13:02
and then personally you know it’s
13:04
everything from obviously part of the
13:05
question that that that led to the
13:08
election of Donald Trump is there’s a
13:10
lot of people in a number of states that
13:11
are feeling in pain they worry that
13:13
their children have less good futures
13:15
and they had there is you know kind of
13:18
serious opioid epidemics and a number of
13:21
different states and and regions and
13:23
they say look these need to be fixed
13:25
don’t tell us more of the same tell us
13:27
how we have opportunity tell us how we
13:29
make that happen and I think you know
13:30
part of the thing about being invented
13:32
being problem solvers you know because
13:34
that’s part of what we try to do with
13:35
technology and businesses and so it is
13:37
we should do more of that now I think
13:39
another part of it is the earlier thing
13:40
is I do think we have a problem
13:42
I think the fake news thing is actually
13:44
levelled both ways like I don’t think
13:46
it’s a the coast saying the mid
13:48
Midwest I mean you’ve got your president
13:50
saying CNN is fake news etc etc I mean
13:52
you know you have the erosion of these
13:54
kinds of institutions and I we have to
13:56
be able to talk but if you can’t have
13:58
some basis for conversation which says
14:01
okay this is what we think truth is this
14:03
is where we think we should be going it
14:05
very difficult for democracy to work so
14:08
you know it’s everything from the kind
14:10
of win the future this is this
14:13
organization yes that WTF WTF with a
14:16
deliberate you know kind of on I see
14:18
what you’re doing yes yeah uh I find it
14:22
juvenile but go right ahead
14:23
Oh what we specialize in Juma I know
14:25
that no believe me after many years of
14:27
covering all of you like um and so I’m a
14:31
matter of fact actually one of my most
14:34
favorite theories of the evolution
14:36
humanities in the Otton II right we were
14:37
born early and and that plasticity and
14:40
ability to learn is is key so and so I
14:43
think there’s a whole stack of things
14:45
and I think some of it is like what is
14:46
the future work look like I think some
14:48
of it is the question of how do we get
14:50
communication channel how do we get to a
14:51
rebuild of here’s some kind of
14:54
communication like one of the projects
14:55
that I’ve funded at the MIT Media labs
14:57
called core Co which is done has done an
14:59
analysis through the Twitter firehose of
15:01
how fragmented the discourse is well how
15:05
do we get that discourse somewhat less
15:06
fragmented because with that with
15:09
fragmented discourse of course you end
15:10
up with you know kind of complete like
15:13
different planets no it’s a hellscape
15:15
out there but go ahead yeah so any with
15:17
that but that’s the well and then
15:18
there’s a whole question about how these
15:20
things get hacked by you know autocratic
15:23
hostile actors right and you know one of
15:26
the things that we have to pay attention
15:27
to is it is not necessarily purely just
15:30
the diversity of humanity that’s playing
15:32
on it but there are people who have
15:34
political aims that may be investing and
15:37
you know I’m really interested to see
15:38
what will emerge out of you know kind of
15:41
Russian and foreign power influence on
15:43
trying to hack social media because
15:45
that’s that’s kind of a key issue and I
15:47
think actually one of the things that
15:49
you know Brad Smith at Microsoft called
15:52
for that I think is real interesting is
15:54
how do we get to a Geneva Convention and
15:55
cyber I think that’s actually an
15:57
important thing to to look at happening
15:59
because part of that is what
16:02
happen with these things being hackable
16:03
a little bit like they talk just before
16:05
us your attention can be hacked in ways
16:08
that it isn’t just code hacking this is
16:11
just cyber but it’s kind of a question
16:12
of what you presume to be true and and
16:15
you know we want a vibrant democracy we
16:17
have to try to to get to a point so
16:20
we’re having rational conversations and
16:22
we’re actually using evidence and
16:24
argumentation to decide X is true and Y
16:26
is not right all right I want to get to
16:28
where innovations going think that’s
16:29
really what investments is but are you
16:31
you investing a lot of your money in
16:33
this I’m not supposed to call you a
16:34
certain thing of the left but what are
16:36
you investing a lot of money do you want
16:38
to run for office
16:39
definitely not run for office why well
16:42
look I I prefer the partnering board
16:47
member investing that’s one of the
16:49
reasons that guy behind it yes yeah I’m
16:51
guy behind you of LinkedIn the
16:53
smoking-room yes yeah yeah role model
16:56
for elbows who didn’t get the X Files
16:59
right yeah and so and then but I’m
17:05
vesting a bunch of money I’m trying to
17:06
actually facilitate conversations trying
17:08
to facilitate what the right kinds of
17:10
ideas are like what are the ways that we
17:13
can make sure that we have you know
17:15
vibrant economic ecosystems and
17:17
middle-class jobs across the country
17:18
which my network ultimately a lot I’d
17:22
say thus far is probably millions
17:24
millions but hundreds of millions you
17:26
think this is it could get there could
17:27
get there all right so let’s talk about
17:29
where and Mark you’re not running for
17:32
office I hope okay I would not advise
17:35
thank you can you imagine anybody voting
17:36
for me yes I don’t I might just as a
17:40
joke separate you got to oh if I run
17:43
I’ll take the sarcastic alright so let’s
17:46
talk about innovation where it’s going
17:48
you guys have been around forever
17:49
there’s been a lot of different
17:50
investments and periods of time and
17:53
things like that and it is related to
17:55
jobs the future of jobs let’s start with
17:57
there how do you look cause I think to
18:00
me it seems like Silicon Valley is doing
18:01
a lot more serious thought about
18:02
investing beyond into the into it into
18:05
the next era cars automation robotics
18:08
each of you want you start Marc talk
18:10
about you think of the most last time
18:12
you were here you’re talking about
18:13
software eating the world
18:14
talked about a wide range of things how
18:16
are you thinking now about investments
18:18
yes it’s interesting we have two sectors
18:21
two different kinds of economy in the US
18:24
or do two different kind of categories
18:25
of sectors divide them in one might call
18:27
the fast sectors and the slow sectors or
18:29
the fast chain sectors slow chain sector
18:30
so the fast chain sectors are sectors
18:32
like retail transportation media in
18:35
which technology has had a huge impact
18:37
software is eating those sectors there’s
18:40
massive change happening in those
18:41
sectors massive productivity
18:42
improvements as measured by productivity
18:44
which is how economists measure the rate
18:46
of technological change by the way Janak
18:48
churn in in jobs right turn in obviously
18:52
media and retail and you’re in BuzzFeed
18:54
you’re in a bunch of yeah yeah exactly
18:56
right and in lots of debates about the
18:57
nature of that churn by the way however
18:59
along with that rapidly falling prices
19:01
right so the prices of basically
19:03
everything and reaching or as if the
19:05
experience everybody has an Amazon
19:06
customer prices in retail prices in
19:08
media with all the free media and
19:09
internet and prices in transportation
19:11
are going to fall you know dramatically
19:12
with self-driving cars and so very
19:15
rapidly falling prices but like a big
19:17
and then a big concern of where the jobs
19:19
going to come from so that’s part of the
19:21
economy the other part of economy is
19:22
what you might call the slow change part
19:24
of the economy which is all the sectors
19:25
in which the opposite of that is
19:27
happening and so these are sectors like
19:29
health care education and construction
19:32
elder care child care and also by the
19:35
way government so took all those kind of
19:37
the big six in those sectors the
19:39
opposite is happening which is in those
19:40
sectors we have a price crisis right the
19:42
price of all those things is rising
super fast right so that the FT had a
story today eighty eight percent of all
the price inflation in the US economy
since 1990 is attributable entirely
eighty eight percent of it attributable
to health care education and
construction
right and so what’s
happening on and the sort of the slow
change sector of the economy is
19:59
basically everything’s becoming super
20:00
expensive and if you try to buy a house
20:02
or if you want to send a kid to school
20:04
or if you need to get care for an ailing
20:06
relative you experience this and hence
20:08
all the concern around the cost of all
20:10
these things those are the sectors the
20:12
economy the technologies having almost
20:13
no impact on right software is playing a
20:15
very small role at best those are also
20:18
the sectors that have almost no
20:20
productivity growth right as measured by
20:21
economists and left unchecked those
20:23
sectors are basically just going to eat
20:25
the economy right if those if the if the
20:28
products and services in those sectors
20:29
keep rising in price they end up being
everything we pay for health care is
eating the account yeah health care
healthcare education and construction of
the big three and there’s eating the
economy fully-loaded construction costs
have doubled since the year 2000 in the
US I mean just like absurd things are
20:42
happening in real estate and
20:42
construction and so I think the
20:45
opportunity and the challenge is for the
20:48
tech industry in Silicon Valley and all
20:49
of us to go figure out how to have a
20:51
much bigger impact in the in the slow
20:53
growth sectors of the economy the slow
20:55
change sectors the economy I think if we
20:56
do that if we’re effective at it we have
20:59
the opportunity to bend the cost curves
21:00
over time and these by the way are very
21:02
very big sectors with very very big kind
21:04
of entrenched forces I play by the way
21:06
these also the slow change sectors also
21:08
happen to be highly regulated right
21:09
these are sectors of the economy where
21:10
the government plays a gigantic role in
21:12
the economics of these sectors and so
21:13
these are not easy sectors to disrupt
21:15
these are this is the big leagues but
21:18
the opportunity exists to really go
21:19
after the price curves and
21:20
systematically drive down prices in
21:22
those industries if we do that like that
21:25
may be the single biggest thing we could
21:26
do to improve quality of life for a
21:28
living that’s ordinary people we are
21:29
actively investing so super actively
21:32
investing education Udacity one of our
21:34
companies going directly after skills
21:35
acquisition doing very well with an
21:37
entirely new way to link with employers
21:39
to do skills acquisition training online
21:40
we’re very aggressively investing in
21:42
healthcare we think there’s a whole new
21:44
very interesting thing happening at the
21:45
intersection of healthcare and software
21:47
that’s just getting started and we’re
21:49
investing very aggressively on that
constructions harder you know the big
challenge that we’re all going to have
to tack on the long run is this sort of
question of cities and this question of
land use
and whether cities are going to
be allowed to get big enough where
everybody who wants to get to them is
going to be able to get to them Mayer
Swisher in San Francisco I think it’s
22:05
going to have this on the top of her
22:06
list yeah as thanks to solve oh really
22:09
so that’s the sector that’s a second be
22:10
you’re going to be my deputy of
22:12
something I’m looking forward to it yes
22:14
yes I will take that on my business card
22:16
so that’s a big one we’re also by the
22:18
way elder care and childcare are both
22:21
both are increasingly central elements
22:25
to the economy huge employers in both
22:27
fast rising sectors we have a company
22:29
honor that I’m involved in that’s trying
22:30
to come up the fundamentally better way
22:31
to orchestrate whole process go right
22:33
here mean what about you know so
22:36
slightly different division so I think
22:39
about things that are kind of classic
22:41
for what we do
22:41
is kind of businesses with network
22:43
effects which can include both consumer
22:45
and enterprise sides so those are things
22:47
like you know obviously Airbnb or convoy
22:50
which is kind of over for trucking
22:52
we just recently can we still use that
22:54
uber for or is that not allowed uh well
22:57
I think we always use the version of it
22:59
I mean before whatever it’s a it’s a
23:01
it’s a quick did that for mark or prefer
23:03
X is better now because it has an extra
23:05
element of danger okay ah the lyft guy
23:10
that one guys
23:12
and so there’s a stack of those sort of
23:15
businesses which I think are the I think
23:17
we will continually design new forms of
23:20
software ecosystems that have these
23:22
network effects that organize how
23:25
millions to billions of people
23:26
communicate work you know kind of
23:29
coordinate communicate all that sort of
23:32
thing together and then part of what we
23:35
look for is what are things that are
23:37
substantially contrarian that are not in
23:40
the kind of the current you know cut a
23:41
buzz cycle right the buzz cycle okay is
23:44
AI ARV are you know etc and then what
23:50
are the things that they’re you can
23:51
actually do something that actually
23:53
might be really interesting some of
23:55
those will play out into those
23:56
industries so you know if you figure out
23:59
different kinds of of construction you
24:03
know robotics so you figure out you know
24:05
energy sources or other kinds of things
24:06
those can actually play into those and
24:08
can actually change those cloths curves
24:09
so it isn’t it is it’s a different way
24:11
of looking at it which is kind of
24:13
through the lens of these things or
24:14
defining kind of network effects
24:16
software ecosystems with people and and
24:20
devices you know kind of combined
24:22
together and then these things are
24:23
what’s kind of off the current beaten
24:26
path so what is that what do you name
24:28
something so let’s see what can i name
24:34
well i mean so you know one of the
24:37
things that we did last year is a energy
24:41
company which i can’t talk about in
24:42
depth all right what kind of energy uh
24:45
so possibly fusion possibly fusion look
24:51
Oh God yeah and and investing in that in
24:56
a new and exciting way yeah okay all
24:59
right
25:00
what about robotics so I think robotics
25:03
is generally speaking one of the areas
25:05
that everyone knows is going to be super
25:07
important everything from autonomous
25:08
vehicles to other kinds of things
25:09
so there’s AI just a ton of them like
25:12
the number of autonomous vehicles
25:14
startups is yeah they’re like yes is
25:16
like an uncountable set but it’s clearly
25:20
going to be there and then robotics are
25:21
going to be like for example when you
25:22
started saying construction I was like
25:24
oh robotics is the interesting you know
25:26
angle is the first reflex there and I
25:29
think there’s going to be a bunch of
25:30
things there which some of which we’ll
25:32
see from the big companies I think some
25:33
of it you’ll see from startups what do
25:35
you that robotic because you know Bill
25:36
Gates was just saying we should tax
25:38
robots that right and then mark injuries
25:40
is Mark Cuban is saying we’ve got to get
25:43
into it because China is going to do
25:45
this first we should is horrible and
25:46
evil but we have to we have to we have
25:48
to be really good at it yeah this is a
25:50
little bit of a paradox in there so we
25:53
should definitely tax robots right after
25:54
we get done taxing pcs okay uh which
25:56
took away all the secretary jobs all
25:58
right okay so I’d do it in that order
26:00
okay all right so so far how do you look
26:02
for Microsoft hasn’t taken us up on that
26:04
all right how do you get to what do you
26:05
imagine robotics is going oh it’s very
26:07
the content we’ll get to the job issue
26:09
in a second but you know but talk about
26:11
the sector’s automation and robotics
26:13
together and I suppose AI also gets in
26:17
that pot yeah so look so the big thing
26:18
is the big thing is happening is that
26:20
the so-called so-called AI but machine
26:23
learning the whole the whole sort of
26:24
family of technologies around Aero
26:25
machine learning and sensors right
26:26
something dramatic has really happened
26:29
something dramatic really tipped about
26:30
five years ago we’re a whole category of
26:32
things that just didn’t work at one
26:33
point all of a sudden work and so I just
26:35
I think – I think at this point there’s
26:37
just a feeding frenzy in the tech
26:39
industry in the valley to try to
26:40
experiment with every single possible
26:41
permutation what can be done with AI and
26:43
robots at every possible shape size and
26:46
description it’s I think it’s
26:48
spectacular it’s a it’s it’s one of the
26:50
biggest it’s one of the biggest booms
26:51
slash kind of exploratory let’s go map
26:54
the landscape and let’s go try all the
26:55
ideas that I think I’ve ever seen and
26:56
what do you know and we’re actively
26:57
investing what do you like about that
26:59
what do you end what are you worrying
27:00
area when you say if everyone’s pursuing
27:02
it just oh it’s a classic it’s the
27:04
Silicon Valley it’s the thing that it’s
27:05
the thing that gets everybody excited
27:06
about Silicon Valley and then it’s the
27:07
thing everybody always criticizing
27:08
Silicon Valley for which is of course
27:10
we’re going to overdo it like of course
27:11
there are way too many companies being
27:13
funded doing self-driving cars but out
27:14
of so what always happens in the valley
27:16
right the great strengths of the valley
27:18
I would argue is that when something
27:20
starts to work we over fund it like we
27:21
have way too many companies going after
27:23
this most of them don’t work but the
27:25
ones that do end up becoming very big
27:27
and important right and ultimately
27:29
valuable and so well I think we’ll get
27:30
that exact exact same result out of this
27:32
phenomenon for people who want to say
27:34
the Silicon Valley just does well pulls
27:35
over and over again there will be
27:36
ammunition to support that view but I
27:38
think out of that will come you know
27:39
defining companies of the era that we
27:41
probably haven’t even heard of the app
27:42
that are going to be on the on the scale
27:43
of the big technology win in that sector
27:45
in that sector yeah the opportunities
27:46
are very very very big do you worry
27:48
either view about the job impact when
27:51
we’re talking and I want to understand
27:52
where you look at the where you feel the
27:54
responsibility if you have any on the
27:56
future of jobs it’s the thing I’m very
27:58
interested in well so and obviously I
28:00
mean to some degree what I found in
28:03
LinkedIn was trying to help people
28:04
figure out what the skills jobs
28:06
opportunities of the future so taking
28:08
software and networks to enable that and
28:10
enable people to be able to find the
28:13
right opportunities get the right skills
28:15
get the right connections to those kinds
28:17
of things that’s actually very central
28:18
let me give you a kind of a classic kind
28:21
of thought on within the autonomous
28:23
vehicles because people frequently say
28:24
oh these home Thomas vehicle is going to
28:26
take a whole bunch of jobs there’s an
28:28
issue there and you have to get that
28:29
transition but on the other hand once
28:30
you have autonomous vehicles for example
28:32
being able to have people now actually
28:35
in fact go be able to get to work in a
28:39
much more easy way to be able to
28:40
actually when they’re in transit to be
28:43
actually doing things that are either
28:44
relaxing or working as a way of doing it
28:46
it also opens up a variety of
28:49
productivity possibilities no I get that
28:51
argument of like you can now text and
28:52
drink I get that I get you know it’s
28:54
it’s all that I drink is the funnest
28:55
thing the texting all right the but it
28:58
is that happy shiny future idea of like
29:00
oh it’s going to be so much the same
29:01
thing with AI same thing with that mark
29:04
you were just going to say something but
29:04
what I wonder about is when that happens
29:07
there are millions of jobs driving take
29:11
driving millions of jobs and I think
29:13
when Travis was on this stage
29:14
said the problem is the guy he actually
29:16
was honest compared to most people sit
29:20
by saying the guy in the front seats the
29:21
problem we need to get rid of the guy in
29:23
the front seat you know I mean which
29:24
everyone we had a sharp intake of breath
29:26
I was like yay he said it but but what
29:30
do you how do you look at that do you
29:32
feel what are you going to do about that
29:34
or do you have nothing to do about it
29:35
so it’s a fallacy okay it’s the lump of
29:38
Labor fallacy is the Luddite fallacy
29:39
it’s it’s recurring panic this happens
29:41
every 25 50 years people get all amped
29:43
up okay machines are going to take all
29:44
the jobs and it never happens so let’s
29:45
talk about cars specifically because
29:47
that that’s front center for the
29:48
conversation so when the automobile 100
29:50
years ago in the automobile went
29:51
mainstream this concern literally
29:52
existed exactly same panic happened it
29:55
happened because of all the people whose
29:56
livelihood literally was taking care of
29:57
horses right so everybody running
29:58
stables and everybody doing blacksmiths
30:00
and like the whole thing an I god what’s
30:02
going to happen cuz Ford Motor Company’s
30:03
you know in the world and nobody else is
30:04
going to have anything to do the car
30:06
then created not only a lot of jobs
30:08
building cars right it became a huge
30:10
employer right now the car industry
30:12
became such a huge employer that we had
30:13
to bail out all the car companies to
30:14
keep working like a hundred years it
30:16
went entirely in the other direction not
30:19
only that the car think of everything
30:21
else that happened as a consequence of
30:22
the car so the idea of surface streets
30:24
right paved streets emerge because of
30:26
the car right streets weren’t paved
30:27
before the car they were paid for the
30:29
car so paving streets the idea of the
30:31
idea of restaurants the idea that you
30:33
might actually go someplace to eat
30:34
something was an invention of the car
30:36
the idea of motels hotels the place
30:39
we’re in here is it exists entirely
30:41
because the automobile the idea of movie
30:43
theater is the idea of apartment
30:45
complexes the idea of office complexes
30:47
the idea of at some suburbs the entire
30:50
build-out of suburban America the jobs
30:53
that were created by the automobile on
30:54
the second third and fourth order
30:55
defects were a hundred X a thousand X
30:58
the number of jobs the blacksmith’s had
30:59
and so this goes to kind of the
31:01
fundamental kind of flaw in the logic
31:03
that they call the length of labor
31:04
fallacy which is technological change
31:06
causes productivity growth productivity
31:08
growth lets us produce more of what we
31:11
can already make with less resources and
31:13
then lets us create that that’s what
31:15
frees up the spending power to let us
31:16
create lots of new things great lots new
31:18
demand and that’s what creates new
31:19
industries and that’s what creates new
31:20
jobs and then 100 years later we look
31:22
back on it we’re like I can’t believe
31:23
anybody who’s ever a blacksmith and so
31:25
this has been the pant literally this is
31:27
like the panic every
31:28
8550 years except if you are a
31:29
blacksmith and it never comes true the
31:32
good news is you didn’t work out the
31:33
good the good news is the car company
31:35
the car companies and all of these other
31:37
industries hired huge numbers of people
31:38
and so I think the self-driving car has
31:39
the opportunity to not only improve
31:42
productivity for people in the car which
31:44
will be a huge economic boost for those
31:45
people not only has the opportunity to
31:47
save lives right over a million people
31:49
died worldwide in road deaths today
31:50
caused by human drivers and I think we
31:52
can take that very close to zero right
31:54
which is very good for both human
31:55
welfare and in terms of economic
31:56
productivity right it’s it’s like it’s a
31:58
very serious dent in productivity when
32:00
people get killed and then and then and
32:04
then and then and then all the all the
32:07
ancillary industries that end up getting
32:08
built out so as an example maybe this
32:10
whole land use thing everybody’s worried
32:11
about maybe with salt driving cars we
32:13
can start to have excerpts that actually
32:15
work which is to say another layer
32:17
around cities right further out right
32:19
they don’t qualify as suburbs because
32:21
you couldn’t tolerate couldn’t possibly
32:22
tolerate commuting in an hour hour and a
32:24
half right so people in Silicon Valley
32:25
right experiencing if you live south of
32:27
San Jose your commute now might be an
32:28
hour and a half but it’s not half in the
32:29
car driving the car if you were in the
32:32
self-driving car all of a sudden then
32:33
you’ve got you might have a huge
32:34
construction boom in all the outlying
32:35
areas around these cities and that
32:36
construction boom might hire for more
32:38
people than were ever involved in
32:39
driving cars so well and so the process
32:41
works by the way as evidence of that
32:44
after all of the technological
32:46
disruption that has everybody all
32:47
freaked out that got us to where we are
32:48
today
32:48
right unemployment in the u.s. is now
32:50
back below it’s not below 4.3 percent
32:52
right there’s if you’re living in areas
32:54
like Kentucky there’s six million
32:57
there’s six million job openings up in
32:58
the US and the the panic stories in the
33:01
press have gone overnight from oh my god
33:03
not enough jobs to oh my god not enough
33:05
workers right and The Times is an
33:07
example of Dean’s paper had a very good
33:09
story about two weeks ago on there’s an
33:10
hour crisis in Utah there aren’t enough
33:11
people to literally milk all the cows
33:13
they’ve literally run out of people to
33:15
milk the cows and so what the the jobs
33:16
crisis we actually have in the u.s.
33:18
today is we don’t have enough workers
33:18
it’s aimed in the right thing by the way
33:21
we might make that you know for this if
33:22
these immigration policies continuing we
33:24
might make that problem far worse yeah
33:25
okay you’re in for immigration very much
33:28
okay good
33:29
what are you worried about are you
33:32
worried about this at all then we’re
33:33
going to get to questions well so the
33:35
one thing I agree with most of what Mark
33:37
said there including the fact that if
33:39
you remap what is the logistics and
33:41
space
33:42
it creates a lot of different
33:42
productivity not just construction but a
33:44
lot of different ways that that may play
33:46
out and change his clusters
33:48
I think the transitions can be very
33:50
painful so I think we need to pay
33:52
attention to the pain that pain so like
33:53
example the agriculture – Industrial
33:56
Revolution actually involved a large
33:58
ugly very ugly and so while I tend to
34:00
think oh look it works out it’ll
34:02
probably work out anyway the the
34:04
question is let’s try to make it work
34:06
out in a way that’s more humane more you
34:10
know kind of the society that we want to
34:11
be and kind of not as much pain in that
34:13
kind of transition right absolutely do
34:15
you think about that pain so look so
34:17
whatever you just Blofeld or what’s
34:19
don’t let me ask so let’s talk about
34:22
what’s actually happening so these are
34:23
all hypotheticals are both actually
34:24
happening so economists have a way of
34:26
measuring the rate of technological
34:27
change disruption in the economy is
34:29
called productivity productivity growth
34:30
would we expect based on everything that
34:33
we read here and understand with this
34:34
rate of technological change and
34:35
disruption would we think that
34:37
productivity growth is at generational
34:38
highs or lows I’ll be highs right and it
34:41
turns out it’s a it’s a generational
34:43
lowest productivity growth is running
34:44
super low and economists are writing
34:46
books left right and center agonizing
34:47
over why productivity isn’t growing
34:48
faster would you expect that the rate of
34:50
job churn the rate of both job creation
34:53
and destruction in the economy which
34:55
tend to go hand-in-hand would you expect
34:56
that those the rate of churn is at a
34:58
generational higher generational low no
35:00
idea I’m not going to answer so it’s a
35:01
trick it’s a trick question as you
35:02
anticipated oh just right now
35:04
everything’s a trick question with you
35:06
the rate of job churn American economy
35:08
has been declining for 40 years and it
35:09
shows no sign of growing would you
35:11
expect that the rate of which people are
35:12
turning over in jobs individuals turning
35:14
over in jobs is increasing or decreasing
35:16
well Millennials are who everybody but
35:18
just everybody is the set by the way
35:19
including Millennials probably are
35:21
decreasing all right people are staying
35:22
in jobs longer and would you expect
35:24
because of all the disruption that we
35:25
know about would you expect that the
35:26
rate of new entrants of new companies
35:28
and existing industries is accelerating
35:30
sorry it’s decelerating okay we don’t
35:33
have the problem work at 11:00 p.m. we
35:35
don’t have I haven’t even had a Scott
35:37
yet okay that can be fixed that can be
35:41
fixed we don’t even we don’t we do not
35:43
not only do we not have the problem
35:44
everybody’s worried about we have the
35:45
opposite problem we don’t have enough
35:46
change we don’t have enough change we
35:48
don’t have enough creation of new jobs
35:50
we don’t have enough creation a new
35:51
opportunity which is what in my view
35:52
goes right back to the politics is what
35:54
leads to zero-sum politics
35:55
the reason our politics is going
35:56
sideways is not because there’s too much
35:58
changes because there’s not enough
35:59
change because people don’t see a future
36:01
because they don’t see anything changing
36:01
and I think you see the zero the zero
36:03
sum politics you see that sense on both
36:05
the left-right with you on the Bernie
36:07
left and on the Trump right I think
36:09
that’s the problem the way through that
36:10
is not just slowed down the way through
36:12
that is to speed up right the way
36:13
through that is more change more growth
36:15
more opportunity all right that’s the
36:17
path forward and so I does this goes
36:18
back to like I’m just I’m very worried
36:20
that we’ve actually gotten off and we’re
36:21
just talking about completely the wrong
36:22
thing right now and I’m hoping maybe
36:24
over the next couple yes yes we can
36:25
massage this a little bit more towards
36:27
the actual the actual crisis that we
36:28
have all right questions from the
36:30
audience right here hey guy Horowitz T
36:33
capital are you so this is a very
36:36
Silicon Valley centric view which is
36:40
where you guys are is the world changing
36:43
in that respect are we seeing more ideas
36:46
and concepts coming from other parts of
36:49
the world so I think the I think the
36:53
answer to the question in some degree is
36:55
both which is yes there’s more
36:57
entrepreneurship there’s more technology
36:58
there’s multiple areas not just
37:00
obviously a huge amount of stuff going
37:02
on in China but like when you get to
37:04
Europe it’s you know Stockholm and
37:06
Berlin and London there’s various cities
37:08
across the u.s. on the other hand
37:10
frequently that’s the is the Silicon
37:14
Valley losing some of that’s always the
37:16
class and I actually think that Silicon
37:17
Valley is persisting because of the
37:19
network effect of Silicon Valley in
37:21
terms of lots of entrepreneurs move here
37:24
the ideation moves at a very fast pace
37:26
rate because people talk to each other
37:29
about what’s what’s going on what truth
37:31
what are you seeing in autonomous
37:32
vehicles which things going to work etc
37:33
etc and that also creates something so I
37:35
think the answer is some grades yes to
37:38
the rest of the world but also
37:39
continuing very interesting patterns of
37:42
leadership from Silicon Valley are you
37:44
worried about Slocombe I was losing its
37:45
step no never never
37:47
not right now yeah well we’re doing
37:49
everything we can to kill it but as a
37:50
part we so far we keep so far we keep
37:52
missing all right we collectively the
37:55
state of California oh okay consider San
37:56
Francisco alright got it okay good I’m
37:58
gonna make it even worse for anyway
38:02
hello Manny Cuchillo

Fireside Chat: Marc Andreessen & Sebastian Thrun

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22:54
looking at us right now if you come to
22:58
your younger self what is the advice he
23:01
would give to our students so the single
23:04
biggest piece of career advice that I’ve
23:06
ever heard that I realized after the
23:08
fact I was implementing I didn’t realize
23:09
it at the time was Scott actually Scott
23:11
Adams the guy who invented Dilbert easy
23:14
to remember who came up with this piece
23:16
of advice because how many how many
23:17
people invented Dilbert he his his big
23:20
advice was it’s not about any particular
23:22
skill it’s about combining skills right
23:25
the world is becoming an ever more
23:26
complicated place everything is slamming
23:28
together right it feels it used to be
23:29
discrete or not combining do a large
23:32
part to what we’ve been talking about
23:34
and so it’s not about any individual
23:36
skill it’s about come it’s about
23:37
combining skills and then constantly
23:39
layering on new skills and so like the
23:41
great example is you can you can be an
23:42
engineer and you manage your track you
23:44
could be a writer the professional
23:45
writer but what if you’re an engineer
23:47
with writing skills right and then you
23:49
can be the engineer who can then
23:50
actually articulate what engineers do
23:52
which might be helpful or you could be a
23:54
writer right who understands engineering
23:56
culture and you could write books about
23:57
technology right and all of a sudden
23:58
like both of those are like highly
24:00
differentiated skills like those those
24:02
are very special skills and then what if
24:04
on top of that you thread it in
24:05
knowledge of Education and then you have
24:07
the ability to write about technology
24:09
and education and all of a sudden that’s
24:10
a very special thing
24:11
and then basically through the course of
24:13
your life you just keep layering in you
24:14
just keep you keep layering in more and
24:16
more skills we were actually I’ll brag
24:17
on Sebastian you know professor turn
24:20
executive turned entrepreneur right it’s
24:23
like no talk it you know talk about like
24:24
a magical combination of skills right
24:26
there’s there’s no possible professor
24:27
who could keep up with him in business
24:28
and there are very few business people
24:30
who can keep up with them on the
24:31
intellectual side of things and so the
24:33
magic is in the combination and and I
24:35
suspect the world’s gonna get more in
24:37
the direction where combinations are
24:39
going to get much more valuable and the
24:41
people who have the combinations of
24:43
skills of attending on the students take
24:44
more than a degrees that’s good time
24:50
would ask one last question sure how do
24:52
you get rid of fear how do I do what
24:55
fear fear seem so fearless what’s that
24:58
yes that means what’s that mean if ei
25:01
are AR see so much of it is it’s you
25:06
actually actually read a study actually
25:08
read a study area there’s a psychologist
25:10
named Dean Simonton who has studied the
25:12
history of creativity across every
25:14
different kind of creative field art
25:15
music and business and everything and
25:17
his his big conclusion out of the entire
25:19
thing is the people who succeed are the
25:21
people who just keep swinging the bat at
25:23
the ball over and over and over again
25:24
it’s just repeated attempts basically
25:27
people who don’t quit and who keep
25:28
swinging and so just it’s just sort of
25:30
this I don’t know maybe it’s maybe it’s
25:32
my Midwestern background or just
25:34
old-fashioned stubbornness but you know
25:36
it’s it’s very easy to opt out it’s very
25:38
easy to get discouraged and give up but
25:39
if you kind of have the mentality which
25:41
I don’t know where it comes from but
25:42
I’ve got it I’ve got the mentality the
25:44
basically says it kind of doesn’t matter
25:45
how many times you get knocked down the
25:47
key the key thing is to just keep
25:48
getting back up and keep swinging and

Marc Andreessen on the Need for Growth to Prevent Zero Sum Thinking

Many skeptics thought the internet would never reach mass adoption, but today it’s shaping global culture, is integral to our lives–and this is just the beginning. In this conversation, Kevin Kelly (Founding Executive Editor, WIRED magazine) and Marc Andreessen (Cofounder and General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz) sit down to discuss the evolution of technology, the new “Space Race,” and how measuring prosperity on a global scale is the key to our collective success. Learn why they share an optimistic view on the possibilities of the future.

HIGHLIGHTS
Discussion on closing the digital divide [3:00]
The many possibilities of voice technology as an interface [9:59]
Moore’s Law vs. Eroom’s law [14:14]
Looking at 5G Technology as the next global driver [20:38]
New models for VC and company models [27:05]
How long-term thinking can be applied in Silicon Valley [29:53]
Measuring prosperity on a global scale [34:00]
The potential impact of cyber technology on global conflict [38:45]
The foundation of Marc’s optimism [41:05]
M

34:11
introspection about government but also
34:12
about capitalism and capitalism so far
34:17
has depended on growth and growth is
34:19
something that VC’s pay attention to but
34:24
we’re now wondering if what’s the
34:27
minimum amount of growth that you might
34:28
need to have prosperity can you have
34:30
prosperity with low growth can you have
34:31
prosperity with fixed growth do you have
34:36
any insights about about that at the
34:38
civilizational scale yes I think in
34:40
actually I don’t even say that the issue
34:42
is even more intense these days because
34:43
there’s now very prominent people in
34:44
public life arguing that growth is bad
34:46
right and in fact it’s it that it that
34:49
it in fact is ruinous and destructive
34:50
and that the right goal might actually
34:51
be they have no growth or to actually go
34:52
into negative growth then especially in
34:54
a very common view in the environmental
34:56
movement so I’m a very strong proponent
34:59
a very strong believer that growth is
35:00
absolutely necessary and I’ll come back
35:02
to environmental thing in a second
35:03
because it’s a very interesting case of
35:04
this
I think growth is absolutely necessary
and I think the reason growth is
absolutely necessary is because you can
fundamentally have two different mindset
views of how the world works
right one
is positive some which is you know
rising tide lifts all boats we can all
do better together and the other is is
is a zero-sum right where for me to win
somebody else must lose
and vice-versa
and reason I think economic growth is so
important at cores because if there is
fast economic growth then we have
positive some politics and we start to
have all these discussions about all
these things that we can do as a society
and if we have zero some grow if we have
if we have a flat growth or no growth or
negative growth all of a sudden the
politics become sharply zero-sum and in
the most in the most the most you just
kind of see this if you kind of track
you know kind of the political climate
you just basically it’s the wake of
every recession right it’s just in the
wake of every economic recession the
politics just go like seriously negative
on in terms of thinking about the
world’s is zero-sum
and and then when
you get a zero-sum outlook Impala
six that’s when you get like
anti-immigration that’s when you get
anti trade
that’s when you get anti tech
if the world’s not growing then all
that’s left to do is to fight over what
we what we already have and so my view
is like you need to have economic growth
you need to have economic growth for all
of the reasons that I would say right
wingers like economic growth which is
you want to have higher levels material
prosperity more opportunity more job
creation all those things you want to
have economic growth for the purpose of
having like sane politics like a
productive political conversation and
then I think the kicker is you also want
economic growth actually for many of the
things that left-wing people want one of
the best books this year new books this
year is a guy Andrew McAfee I was
reading a book called
I think more from less it’s actually a
story of a really remarkable thing that
a lot of people are missing about what’s
happening with the environment which is
globally carbon emissions are rising and
resource utilization is rising in the
u.s. carbon emissions and resource
utilization are actually falling and so
in the u.s. we have figured out to grow
our economy while reducing our use of
natural resources which is a completely
unexpected twist right to the plot of
what kind of if you lose
environmentalists in six years of
seventies like nobody predicted that and
it turns out he talks about this in the
book but it turns out basically what
happens is economies when economies
advanced to a certain point they get
really really good at doing more with
less right they get really really good
efficiency and they get really good at
energy efficiency they get really isn’t
about you use environmental resources
they really go to recycling in lots of
different ways and then they get really
good at what’s called dematerialization
which is what is happening with digital
technology right which is basically
taking things that used to require atoms
and turning them into bits weight which
inherently consumes consumes less
resources and so what you actually want
like my view unlike the environmental
issues is like you’ve got a global
problem which is you have too many
people in too many countries stuck in
kind of mid amid the Industrial
Revolution they’ve got to grow to get to
the point where they’re in a fully
digital economy like we are precisely so
that they can start to have declining
resource utilization right right I mean
the classic example energy like you know
the big problem of the energy emissions
global a huge problem of emissions and
with health from emissions is literally
38:05
people burning wood like in their houses
38:07
right to be able to eat and cook and
38:09
what you want to do is you want to go to
38:10
like hyper efficient solar or ideally
38:12
nuclear right you want to go to these
38:13
like super advanced forms of technology
38:14
so actually it so you want
38:16
that and by the way if you want like a
38:18
big social safety net you know and all
38:20
the social programs you want to pay for
38:21
that stuff
38:22
you also want economic growth because
38:23
that generates taxes of pace of that
38:24
stuff and so like growth is the single
38:27
kind of biggest form of magic that we
38:28
have right to be able to like actually
38:30
make progress and hold the whole thing
38:31
together and you know to your point
38:33
about the developing countries I think
38:36
the idea of leapfrog and technology is a
38:37
myth it doesn’t really work you actually
38:39
have to if you want to have a high-tech
38:42
infrastructure you actually need the
38:43
intermediate roads clean water you can’t
38:46
skip over that and so they all need to
38:48
be built out in order to have that
38:50
prosperity at the end so you know the
38:53
simplest you know seems like you don’t
38:55
worry about much I don’t worry about
38:56
much but one thing I do worry about this
38:58
cyber conflict cyber war partly because
39:01
I think we have no consensus about
39:03
what’s allowable does this worry you at
39:06
all so I think there there’s a lot of
39:08
unknown as to it I think people are
39:09
trying to figure this out but it’s it’s
39:11
a complication to grapple with I will
39:14
make an optimistic argument which is
39:16
going to sound a little strange if you
39:20
kind of project forward what’s happening
39:21
with with generally cyber with
39:23
information you know operations of
39:25
different kinds but also with drones
39:27
you know UAVs and then also with you
39:30
know unmanned you know unmanned fighter
39:32
jets right um and you know ships
39:34
increasingly being built
39:36
it’ll be unmad submarines at some point
39:39
if you projected stuff forward you start
39:42
to get this very interesting potential
39:43
world in which basically the way I think
39:46
about it it’s like all human conflict
39:47
between peoples are between
39:49
nation-states up until now has been
39:51
basically throwing people at each other
39:52
right throwing soldiers at each other
39:54
and like letting them make the decision
39:56
of who to shoot and like hoping they
39:57
don’t get shot like with very serious
39:58
repercussions of all those individual
40:00
human decisions you do have the prospect
40:02
of basically a new world of both offense
40:04
and defense it’s like completely
40:05
motorised completely mechanized
40:06
completely software driven and
40:08
technology driven and a lot of people
40:09
it’s just immediately like oh my god
40:10
that’s horrible
40:11
you know Terminator like you know Skynet
40:13
like you know this is just the worst
40:14
thing ever there’s a novel called kill
40:16
decision if you wanted to snow Pinsky
40:18
okay there’s a novel called kill
40:19
decision by daniel suarez dinosaurus
40:21
then extrapolates the the drones forward
40:23
and a little it’ll keep you up late at
40:25
night but the optimistic view would be
40:26
like boy isn’t it good that there aren’t
40:29
beings involved isn’t it good like if
40:31
the machines are shooting at each other
40:32
like isn’t that good isn’t that better
40:34
than if they’re shooting at us by the
40:36
way and by the way yeah I would go so
40:37
far as to say like I don’t know that I’m
40:39
in favor of like the machines making
40:41
like kill decisions like decisions on me
40:43
to shoot but like the one thing I know
40:44
it’s humans do that very badly like very
40:46
very very badly I’m the opposite of
40:48
pearl war I don’t want to see any of
40:49
this stuff actually play out but if it
40:50
has to play out there maybe having it be
40:52
software machines it’s gonna be actually
40:53
better outcome right I mean this kind of
40:55
weird that we don’t allow we don’t want
40:58
machines to kill humans we want other
41:00
humans to kill you but we want 18 year
41:01
olds we want to take 18 year olds out of
41:04
their homes right we want to put a gun
41:05
in their hand and send them someplace
41:06
and tell me decide who to shoot like it
41:08
that that is gonna go down to history’s
41:10
haven’t been a good idea okay it just
41:12
strikes me as like unlikely so we have
41:14
only time for one last question which is
41:16
I’m usually I claim to be the most
41:18
optimistic person in the room but with
41:20
you sitting across to me I don’t think
41:22
that may be true what is your optimism
41:26
based on so my optimism okay so get
41:30
cosmic for a second why not I guess
41:32
we’re here it’s the last question last
41:33
question so the science fiction author
41:36
science fiction science fiction authors
41:37
always talking about was good they
41:39
called the singularity this constant
41:40
singularity answer it’s a singularities
41:42
basic what happens when the machines get
41:43
so smart than all of a sudden everything
41:45
goes into exponential mode and all of a
41:46
sudden you know the entire world changes
41:48
so I am I reading history is actually we
41:51
actually were in the singularity already
41:53
and that it actually started 300 years
41:56
ago mm-hmm and if you look at basically
42:00
if you look at basically any chart of
42:01
human welfare over time and you can look
42:03
at no child mortality is an obvious one
42:05
but like there’s you know there’s many
42:06
many many others and you just look at
42:08
progress on that metric so your telomere
42:09
tality as an example and it’s just
42:11
basically flat flat flat flat flat flat
42:12
flat for only fifty thousand years right
42:14
is everything and you know if this is
42:15
the family offices at Thomas Hobbes you
42:17
know life is you know nasty brutish and
42:19
short right it was just like the thing
42:20
like everything was terrible everywhere
42:22
all the time forever the end until 300
42:26
years ago when all of a sudden there’s
42:27
this me and the curve and then all the
42:29
indicators of human welfare not
42:31
uniformly across the planet but in
42:33
societies that we’re making progress the
42:37
societies weren’t making progress first
42:38
all of a sudden all those indicators of
42:39
human welfare went up into the right
42:40
right I don’t know of course bonded by
42:42
the way to economic growth but it was
42:44
also right it was the Enlightenment it
42:45
was the rise of democracy it was the
42:47
rise of markets was the rise of
42:48
rationality of the scientific method by
42:51
the way human rights free speech free
42:53
thought right and they all kind of
42:55
catalyzed right around around around 300
42:57
years ago and and they’ve been making
42:58
their way into the world you know in
42:59
sort of increasing concentric circles
43:01
kind of ever since and so we have you
43:04
know I would argue like we have the
43:05
answer it’s like we actually don’t need
43:07
new we don’t need new discoveries to
43:08
have the future be much better we
43:10
actually know how to do it is to apply
43:11
basically those systems and and and
43:15
basically contra the sort of constant
43:17
temptation from all kinds of people to
43:19
try to you know compromise on these
43:20
things or subvert these things you know
43:22
basically double down on these systems
43:23
that we know work right so double down
43:25
economic growth double down on human
43:26
rights double down on markets on
43:29
capitalism double down on the scientific
43:31
method fix science like we got as far as
43:34
we did with science actually being
43:35
pretty seriously screwed up right now
43:37
with the replication crisis like so we
43:39
should fix that and then science will
43:41
all of a sudden start to work much
43:42
better technology right used to yeah use
43:45
of technological tools so we should we
43:48
literally have the systems like we know
43:49
how to do this we know how to make the
43:50
planet much better in every respect and
43:52
so what we just need to do is is keep
43:53
doing that and then what I try to do
43:55
when I read the news is notwithstanding
43:58
everything’s going on is basically try
44:00
to look through whatever’s happen at the
44:01
moment try to look underneath and kind
44:02
of say okay are those fundamental
44:04
systems actually still working like is
44:07
the world getting more democratic or
44:08
less right this is free speech spreading
44:10
or receiving right or markets expanding
44:12
or falling right are more more people
44:14
able to participate in a modern market
44:15
economy or not and you know those
44:17
indicators generally are all or all
44:18
still up into the right mm-hmm
44:20
so let’s go out and make the world
44:22
better yeah thank you
44:23
thanks everybody
44:25
[Applause]

The Insane World of VCs & Businesses like WeWork, Uber & Lyft (w/ Josh Wolfe and Michael Green)

13:43
By the way, talking about somebody being able to operate in India, the single best drone
pilot in the world today– any idea?
MICHAEL GREEN: Well, I’m guessing India.
JOSH WOLFE: 12-year-old girl in Thailand.
MICHAEL GREEN: Really?
JOSH WOLFE: 12-year-old girl.
And she started playing when she was 8.
And she is better on every metric.
In speed, accuracy, she beats everybody.
Her name is Milk.
And that’s, you know, her call sign.
But a 12-year-old girl in Thailand is the best drone pilot in the world.
MICHAEL GREEN: So it truly is actually Ender’s Game, which is the book by Orson Scott Card
where we rely on children to fight the intergalactic battle.
Fascinating.
That’s absolutely amazing.
Let’s think about the nonlinearity for a second.
And one of the topics you wanted to bring up was this idea of liquidity as a nonlinearity.
JOSH WOLFE: Yes.
MICHAEL GREEN: And so one of the things that we see within venture capitals is that there’s
been this explosion of liquidity, particularly exceptionally well-funded growth equity.
So not the true VC stage one, Series A-type round, although that obviously has benefited
from this dynamic, but the Series E pre-public here’s $1 billion, here’s a $20 billion valuation,
here’s a $100 billion valuation.
Talk to me about how you think about this liquidity switch and the impact that that
has on your industry and the impact that has on innovation?
JOSH WOLFE: Well, it ultimately is going to define all the returns.
And if you go back a little bit and say, well, why are we in this situation, where we’ve
called this in the past, the minnows and the megas?
You have lots of these small firms that are starting up that are doing the seed checks,
and then you have these large players that are writing these $100 million plus checks.
Going back 7 years or so, Andreessen— who I think is a brilliant investor, a brilliant
technologist– basically said, there’s only 10 companies that matter in a given year.
And statically, that’s probably true.
Now knowing which 10 is very hard, but he said, you just basically want to be in those
companies.
And I that was a meme that really went very wide.
And people said, OK, well, it doesn’t matter if you invest in Facebook at $1 billion, or
$5 billion, or $10 billion because we’re going to be hundreds of billions.
And so does it really matter if we’re negotiating here and quibbling over $1 billion or $2 billion.
Well, of course, it does, but that I think induced a lot of growth investors to
15:53
let’s just try to speculate on some of these big unicorns.
And you’ve got this phenomenon of companies that were pining to signal that they were
going to be that next Facebook by attaining a billion-dollar valuation.
And then you got a positive feedback effect where people were funding these things, and
to get access, would write an $100 million check at a $900 million pre.
And they would own 10% in a billion-dollar valuation.
And the problem for the early-stage investors and their limited partners is they were getting
these huge markups.

Goals vs Tactics with a16z’s Marc Andreessen at Disrupt SF

10:20
do you do that to a company yeah so a
lot of this is actually you can actually
borrow concepts actually from military
strategy on this which is sort of the
difference between sort of strategy and
tactics right at a difference between
goals and tactics so I think it’s
incredibly important to have a really
vivid clear idea about where you want to
get in the long run that you stick to
and that you’re very solid on and that
everybody agrees to and then I think you
want to be very very flexible in the
tactics and I think the problem is you
it’s a dichotomy right it’s a it’s a
contradiction so you have to you have to
think about terms you have to think it
from a long-term standpoint but also you
have to think in terms of day-to-day
tactics and this is where you know I’ve
been very critical in the past to this
idea of like fail fast because like I
always things like fail fast is like the
key word in there is not fast it’s fail
and failure sucks and success is awesome
and we should be trying to succeed not
fail and I think the fail fast thing is
people thinking because I think fail
fast makes a lot of sense on tactics if
the tactics Network doesn’t work find a
different tactic I think fail fast is
catastrophic if it’s applied to strategy
and if it’s applied to goals and I think
a lot of founders frankly even still
like talk themselves out of what are
going to be good ideas in the long run
because they’re not getting immediate
traction and so again it goes back to
long term like we just ruled by data and
what cited by their gut that’s actually
so that is actually a racing point so
that is one of the things that happens
which is in the old day in the old days
when I when I was running short pants
you just didn’t hat you didn’t have all
the data it was much harder to get a
sense of how well you were doing and so
like on the one hand you you you felt
less concrete connection to what you’re
doing but on the other hand you didn’t
have this cascade of data coming at you
and now is you know like in all of these
businesses today you have daily weekly
if you want you have data to the minute
to the second to the microsecond of how
well or poorly you’re doing and it’s
really easy to get distracted by that by
that short term data and it’s really
easy to draw a long term
Lucian’s based on short-term data and
you do see companies that have gotten in
real trouble over that mm-hmm
conversely you see companies you know
that worked for a very long time on
something that people think is just
completely nutty and they get heavily
criticized along the way and by the way
sometimes those work and sometimes they
don’t but when they do work that is how
you do something like for all this whole
thing about how everything’s supposed to
be speeding up it still takes a decade
or more to build something really
significant I mean it you know in this
world like it still really does so when
it comes to like interesting products
that seem to be sort of jerked around by
their own data or were for a long time

Marc Andreessen on Big Breakthrough Ideas and Courageous Entrepreneurs

Marc Andreessen, Co-Founder & Partner at Andreessen Horowitz, discusses his philosophy on investing in technical founders and the role of technology in today’s startups. Andreessen also addresses the kind of entrepreneurs and ideas his venture capital firm look for: “Big breakthrough ideas often seem nuts the first time you see them.”

Marc Andreessen: “Take the Ego out of Ideas”

“every year in the U.S. on average about 21 million jobs are destroyed and about 24.5 million are created,”

.. it’s wise to understand the difference between two types of errors. Mistakes of commission — losing everything you invest in a company — can be tough, but you’ll get over them in time. Errors of omission — not investing in the first place — will scar you for life.

.. “Just because MySpace didn’t reach Facebook levels of scale didn’t mean Facebook wouldn’t be able to. So you have to be ruthlessly open-minded and constantly willing to reexamine your assumptions,”

.. Instead of spending time overanalyzing whether something will work, he advises, try asking what happens when it does.