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Uncertainty Wednesday: A Random Variable without Expected Value

I ended the previous Uncertainty Wednesday post asking whether an expected value always exists. Going back to the definition, the expected value is the “probability weighted average of a random variable.” So let’s construct an example of a random variable which does not have an expected value. Show More Summary

Board Decks Best Practices

At our portfolio company CEO Summit this spring, the 60 or so leaders in attendance asked us if we could figure out a way to aggregate some insights across our entire portfolio and share the data with them. We said we would see about that. So this summer, we hired Max Heald for a three […]

2017 Private SaaS Company Survey – Part 1

For the sixth year in a row, we’re proud to work with KBCM Technology Group (formerly Pacific Crest Securities) to share results from a survey of over 400 private SaaS companies. The survey represents deep benchmarking data and insights on growth and operations of private SaaS companies. Thank you to the readers of forEntrepreneurs who participated in...

A Better Way To Do Bike Share

I’m a big Citibike user in NYC. I take it to and from work sometimes. I take it to and from the ferries a lot. And I use it to get twenty or thirty blocks in 5-10 mins when I don’t have the time to walk it. But one thing I don’t like about Citibike […]

Buyer Centric Funnel Design

In my talk at the 2017 LAUNCH SCALE conference in San Francisco, I discuss how to get inside your buyer’s head to increase funnel conversion rates. In the talk, I cover: How to design and build a buyer-centric sales funnel that has low CAC and fast sales cycles. How to figure out why your sales funnel...

I Can Be Difficult

Last week, I heard the word "difficult" describing investors twice. Once was about me and once wasn't. The founder and investor relationship is, in fact, a difficult one to get right. Both sides walk in with a lot of cognitive biases and style differences unique to every pair. Show More Summary

Blog Panic (Backing Up Cloud Services)

I woke up this past Friday (the 13th) to a DM on Twitter saying that Continuations was down. I immediately tried to open the site on my phone and was greeted by an ominous: At first I figured that maybe Tumblr was down. A quick check of other Tumblrs revealed that not to be the case. Show More Summary

Southeast Asia

We spent the last nine days in Southeast Asia, in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos. If you want the play by play version of our trip, head on over to the Gotham Gal’s blog where she does that and has has done for every trip we’ve taken over the last fifteen years. As an aside, if […]

Crypto Asset Allocation

Coindesk did me a disservice with this blog post: USV’s Fred Wilson Predicts ‘Big’ Cryptocurrency Crash — CoinDesk (@coindesk) September 26, 2017 It made it seem like I was predicting an imminent crash which I was not. But just as bad, it has led to a lot of tweets like this one suggesting […]

Audio Of The Week: Luis von Ahn, Founder and CEO of Duolingo

Luis von Ahn is a terrific entrepreneur and computer scientist. He is the founder of our portfolio company Duolingo. In this podcast he talks about all sorts of interesting topics.

Funding Friday: Mobile App Controlled Paper Airplane

I just backed this project. I looks like so much fun. I used to love paper airplanes when I was a kid.

Managing Time Zones

I find managing time zones really hard when the differences are large. Eleven or twelve hours is particularly difficult for me. I have missed a couple of scheduled calls this week because I thought they were happing at entirely different times of day. I am curious what tips and techniques all of you use to […]

Last Uncertainty Wednesday we dug deeper into understanding the distribution of sample means. I...

Last Uncertainty Wednesday we dug deeper into understanding the distribution of sample means. I ended with asking why the chart for 100,000 samples of size 10 looked smoother than then one for samples of size 100 (just as a refresher, these are all rolls of a fair die). Show More Summary

AP Computer Science Exams In NYC

The NYC Department Of Education announced yesterday that almost 4,000 high school students took an AP Computer Science exam in the school year that ended in June. This news was part of a larger announcement that total NYC students taking AP exams increased 7.5% last year to almost 50,000. The NYC public school system is […]

Swinging For The Fences

A number of our portfolio companies use scoring systems to prioritize projects on their roadmaps. I like this one called RICE (reach, impact, confidence, effort). There are similar versions of this out there. The important thing about these systems is that you need to include probability of success in your analysis. Just looking at effort […]

Support idyll - Interactive Narratives

I am excited about a new open source project called idyll. Here is how Matthew Conlen, the lead author, describes idyll Idyll is a tool that makes it easier to author interactive narratives for the web. The goal of the project is toShow More Summary

The Conversational Pitch

Lately I have noticed an increase in entrepreneurs coming into USV (or videoing into USV) and talking to us about their business without the use of a deck. I don’t know what to make of that to be honest. But I like it for a bunch of reasons. It allows for more conversation and less […]

The Cold E-mail and the Crazy Big Idea: Industrial Organic Announces Seed Round

"Hi Charlie, I've requested a meeting with you during the first week of March. Here are ten reasons why you should take the meeting..." This is an e-mail I got from Amanda Weeks in February 2014, and the beginning of a two and a half...Show More Summary

Locked and Unlocked Phones

We landed in Vietnam yesterday and immediately got a text from TMobile that they don’t offer data roaming in Vietnam. They do offer basic voice and SMS. So we bought two 10GB data only SIM cards in the airport for 300,000 dong (about $13 US) each. I took out my TMobile SIM of my Google […]

Video Of The Week: Tesla Powerwall

I am obsessed with the Tesla power wall product. We are getting them for the properties we own where we have solar. This video below explains how the power wall works in combination with solar panels, the grid, and your electrical usage. I particularly like this screen shot from the Tesla app that shows the […]

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