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16 Minutes News by a16z

16 Minutes News by a16z

16 Minutes on the News is a short news podcast where we cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z podcast way -- why are these topics in the news; what's real, what's hype from our vantage point; and what are our experts' quick takes on these trends? About the a16z Podcast: Discusses tech and culture trends, news, and the future -- especially as ?software eats the world?. It features industry experts, business leaders, and other interesting thinkers and voices from around the world. This podcast is produced by Andreessen Horowitz (aka ?a16z?), a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm. Multiple episodes -- and now shows -- are released every week; visit a16z.com for more details and to sign up for our newsletters and other content as well!

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Episodes

When Christie's Meets Crypto ? The NFT Moment

In this week?s episode of 16 Minutes ? where we talk about tech trends in the news, what?s hype/ what?s real, and where we are on the long arc of innovation ? the topic is NFTs ("non-fungible tokens"); specifically, the news that Christie?s has become the first major auction house to offer a purely digital artwork tied to an NFT or ?non-fungible token." We?ll go more into NFTs (as well as whether this is really a big deal or not) in this episode, but here?s the news context: The work of art being auctioned is a digital collage by the digital artist Beeple; it?s called Everydays: The First 5,000 Days. The Christie?s auction begins today and runs through March 11. It's news because Christie's, a 250-year-old auction house, is an established presence in the traditional art marketplace, and it?s the first time NFTs (which have been much-buzzed-about in the crypto world for several months) are being formally embraced by the traditional art world. For quick context, NFTs are digital tokens on the Ethereum blockchain, which allow art and other digital assets and collectibles to be verified as unique, hence the term non-fungible (as compared to other, more fungible tokens). They reflect the properties of crypto and blockchains more broadly, such as the ability to track provenance and attribute funds to creators via smart contracts. (For more discussion of NFTs and related themes, check out our previous podcasts Crypto for Creators: From Art Galleries to 'Tokenized' Collectibles and The New Fan Club: Creators, Fans, and the Power of Markets (& Crypto). Zoran Basich of a16z talked to NFT expert Kayvon Tehranian, CEO and founder of Foundation Labs, a marketplace for digital art and collectibles, to help us dig into the Christie's news and broader trend ? all in less than 16 Minutes! *** The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein. This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/. Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.
2021-02-25
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China Steams Ahead in Gaming; MetaHuman Creator and the Uncanny Valley

We have two brief segments ? taking up less than 16 Minutes! ? in this week?s episode of "16 Minutes," where we talk about tech trends in the news, what?s hype/what?s real, and where we are on the long arc of innovation. Both segments touch on trends in gaming/ online worlds and entertainment ? both now and "next."  First, Steam China: Steam ? the cloud library and marketplace for buying, selling, and storing games that was launched by Valve in 2003 and is now the largest distribution platform for PC gaming ? just released an official Chinese version. Next, Meta Human Creator: Epic Games? 3D graphics platform Unreal Engine revealed an early peek at a new content creation tool that aims to make creating digital humans easier. So what does this all mean? We talked to a16z partner Jonathan Lai, a former product manager at Riot Games, who joins 16 Minutes co-host Zoran Basich for both segments to share a quick take on these news items and the trends overall.
2021-02-20
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Beyond Bezos: Amazon, Cloud, and CEO Transitions

Amazon just announced this week that its founder and CEO Jeff Bezos "will transition to the role of Executive Chair in the third quarter of 2021 and [CEO of Amazon Web Services] Andy Jassy will become Chief Executive Officer at that time". So in this episode of 16 Minutes -- our show where we talk about tech trends in the headlines, what's hype/ what's real, and where we are on the long arc of innovation -- we talk not just about this news, but what it signals regarding cloud computing as well as CEO transitions in general. 

How does/ doesn?t it fit into other patterns of tech succession -- like recent moves at Netflix (where Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos was named co-CEO alongside Reed Hastings); Microsoft (Satya Nadella); Intel (Pat Geisinger); Cisco and more? Is Amazon -- with its ability to straddle both enterprise and consumer so strongly -- an outlier, and perhaps more of a conglomerate? And are there certain inflection points or phases for when companies of all sizes should think about succession planning/ such leadership transitions? Sonal Chokshi and Zoran Basich chat with a16z general partner Martin Casado -- who was previously cofounder and CTO at Nicira (which was acquired by VMware, where he became GM of the Networking and Security Business Unit) -- so Casado knows a thing or two about such transitions... not to mention his own past debates and discussions of whether or not to bring on an external CEO. 

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2021-02-06
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Anatomy of a Hack: SolarWinds and Ripples Beyond

In this special ?3x?-long episode of our (otherwise shortform) news analysis show 16 Minutes -- past such 2-3X explainer episodes have covered section 230, Tiktok, GPT-3, the opioid crisis, more -- we cover the SolarWinds hack, one of the largest (if not the largest!) publicly known hacks of all time... and the ripple effects are only now starting to be revealed. Just this week, the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency shared (as reported in the Wall Street Journal) that approximately 30% of both private-sector and government victims linked to the hack had no direct connection to SolarWinds. So who was compromised, do they even know, can they even know?!

Because this hack is a supply-chain compromise involving various third-party software and services all connected together in a "chain of chains", the knock-on effects of it will be revealed (or not!) for years to come. So what do companies -- whether large enterprise, mid-sized startup, or small business -- do? What actually happened, and when does the timeline really begin? While first publicly revealed in December 2020 -- we first covered the news in episode #49 here when it first broke, and there have been countless headlines since (about early known government agency victims, company investigations, other tool investigations, debates over who and how and so on) -- the hack actually began not just a few months but years earlier, involving early tests, legit domains, and a very long game.

We help cut through the headline fatigue of it all, tease apart what's hype/ what's real, and do an "anatomy of a hack" step-by-step teardown -- the who, what, where, when, how; from the chess moves to technical details -- in an in-depth yet accessible way with Sonal Chokshi in conversation with a16z expert and former CSO Joel de la Garza and outside expert Steven Adair, founder and president of Volexity. The information security firm (which specializes in incident response, digital forensics/ memory analysis, network monitoring, and more) not only posted guidance for responding to such attacks, but also an analysis based on working three separate incidents involving the SolarWinds hackers. But how did they know it was the same group? And why was it not quite the perfect crime?

image: Heliophysics Systems Observatory spacecraft characterize, in the highest cadence, the constant stream of particles exploding from the sun affect Earth, the planets, and beyond via NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / Flickr

2021-02-01
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Dall-E AI for Images; Direct Listings, SEC Ruling for Issuing Shares

We've got segments on artificial intelligence and IPO innovation in today's episode of 16 Minutes, where we take a look at the news and what it means for the long arc of innovation.

In the first segment (0:00): Take the surrealistic images of Salvador Dali and cross them with Pixar's animated film Wall-E and you've got ... Dall-E! It's a new neural network that creates images based on text inputs, and the worlds of A.I. and machine learning recently got their first glimpse.

Last summer, research lab OpenAI released an API for the machine learning model GPT-3, which caused a stir with the way it could produce text that was hard to distinguish from human writing (16 Minutes showrunner Sonal Choksi and a16z Operating Partner Frank Chen discussed it in a recent 16 Minutes Podcast, "GPT-3: Beyond the Hype," breaking down what it does and doesn't mean for startups, incumbents, and the idea of "AI as a service").

Now OpenAI has unveiled Dall-E, which processes language to create new images (not new text, as GPT-3 does). Dall-E does this using a neural network called CLIP (Contrastive Language-Image Pre-training), which classifies a wide variety of images culled from the internet while "filling in the blanks" using zero-shot reasoning, enabling Dall-E to produce surprising images by inferring information it wasn't trained in.

We called on Frank again to explain where Dall-E (and the broader topic of machine learning) sits on the path toward artificial general intelligence (AGI), how Dall-E's transformer-type architecture is able to infer information, what its limitations might be, and what uses we might see as this technology develops. -- with Zoran Basich

In the second segment (12:58), we had a quick chat with a16z operating partner Scott Kupor about the recent decision by the SEC to allow the issuance of new shares via direct listings on the New York Stock Exchange. Previously direct listings were limited to the sale of existing shares. Recent first-day IPO "pops" have sparked much discussion about the fairness or unfairness of the process and whether the current path we have for companies going public is broken or just needs some tinkering around the edges.

Scott breaks down how the new rule will affect companies, as well as institutional and retail investors, and what this means in the long arc of IPO innovation. -- with Zoran Basich

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2021-01-26
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All about Section 230, In the News

All about section 230 of the Communications Decency Act -- what does and doesn't it say? How does this law play out against broader questions and debates around platforms, content moderation, and free speech? 

This conversation between Mike Masnick (founder and editor in chief of Techdirt) and a16z editor in chief Sonal Chokshi was originally published May 2020, in the context of previous protests and presidential tweets (and an executive order then to prevent ?online censorship?)-- but is exactly as relevant today... perhaps now more than ever.

https://a16z.com/2020/05/31/16mins-section-230-communications-decency-act-content-moderation-free-speech-internet-past-present-future/

image: presidential tweet activity/ Wikimedia Commons

2021-01-16
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FinCEN Crypto Rule; Haven Healthcare Breakup

We're covering two trends in this week?s episode of "16 Minutes," where we talk about the news, tech trends, and the long arc of innovation:  #1 FinCEN, the Treasury Department's financial crimes enforcement arm, proposed a new rule targeting cryptocurrency holders? ability to transact using self-hosted wallets. These are software applications for storing crypto that allow people to transact on the blockchain directly, rather than going through financial institutions. The rule would require banks and other financial businesses to keep records, and verify the identities not only of their customers but also ? notably ? their customers? counterparties, or people with whom the customer transacts, in certain cases. (Full disclosure: a16z has publicly opposed this plan, and has said it plans to join others in the industry in challenging the rule in court. You can read more about our position here.) a16z General Partner Katie Haun and Operating Partner Anthony Albanese explain the rule and what impact it could have on crypto innovation. #2 Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JP Morgan Chase shut down their joint healthcare venture. Haven was touted as a potential game-changer for employee-funded health care plans and health costs in general, due to the combined resources of its three corporate sponsors, but it was disbanded after three years. We turn to a16z bio General Partner Julie Yoo for a quick check-in on what opportunities this project actually highlighted (including for startups). ? with Zoran Basich 
2021-01-11
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U.S. Government Hacked; Scaling Ethereum

We're back to covering multiple items on our show 16 Minutes -- which covers the news, occasional explainers, and teases apart what's hype/ what's real -- as well as where we are on the long arc of innovation:

#1 Hackers spied on U.S. Treasury emails and other federal agencies through malware installed (indirectly via a third-party provider) over a year ago, but the hack was just revealed this weekend and confirmed in a statement from the National Security Council yesterday. It could be one of the largest (publicly disclosed) hacks of late, so former CSO and a16z operating partner for security Joel de la Garza shares the breaking news and developing story as well as where this fits in overall security trends -- with Sonal Chokshi.

#2 The first of several planned Eth2 upgrades to Ethereum recently went live: the Beacon Chain. Given that DeFi (decentralized finance) and other decentralized applications are often in the headlines, and that Ethereum has experienced growing pains in the past, a16z crypto partner Ali Yahya breaks down what this is and why the news matters in the big picture -- with Zoran Basich.

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Views expressed in ?posts? (including podcasts, videos, and social media) are those of the individual a16z personnel quoted therein and are not the views of AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) or its respective affiliates. AH Capital Management is an investment adviser registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Registration as an investment adviser does not imply any special skill or training. The posts are not directed to any investors or potential investors, and do not constitute an offer to sell -- or a solicitation of an offer to buy -- any securities, and may not be used or relied upon in evaluating the merits of any investment.

The contents in here -- and available on any associated distribution platforms and any public a16z online social media accounts, platforms, and sites (collectively, ?content distribution outlets?) -- should not be construed as or relied upon in any manner as investment, legal, tax, or other advice. You should consult your own advisers as to legal, business, tax, and other related matters concerning any investment. 

Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Any charts provided here or on a16z content distribution outlets are for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, posts may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein. All content speaks only as of the date indicated. 

Under no circumstances should any posts or other information provided on this website -- or on associated content distribution outlets -- be construed as an offer soliciting the purchase or sale of any security or interest in any pooled investment vehicle sponsored, discussed, or mentioned by a16z personnel. Nor should it be construed as an offer to provide investment advisory services; an offer to invest in an a16z-managed pooled investment vehicle will be made separately and only by means of the confidential offering documents of the specific pooled investment vehicles -- which should be read in their entirety, and only to those who, among other requirements, meet certain qualifications under federal securities laws. Such investors, defined as accredited investors and qualified purchasers, are generally deemed capable of evaluating the merits and risks of prospective investments and financial matters. 

There can be no assurances that a16z?s investment objectives will be achieved or investment strategies will be successful. Any investment in a vehicle managed by a16z involves a high degree of risk including the risk that the entire amount invested is lost. Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. Past results of Andreessen Horowitz?s investments, pooled investment vehicles, or investment strategies are not necessarily indicative of future results. A list of investments made by funds managed by a16z is available here: https://a16z.com/investments/. Excluded from this list are investments (and certain publicly traded cryptocurrencies/ digital assets) for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly. As for its investments in any cryptocurrency or token project, a16z is acting in its own financial interest, not necessarily in the interests of other token holders. a16z has no special role in any of these projects or power over their management. a16z does not undertake to continue to have any involvement in these projects other than as an investor and token holder, and other token holders should not expect that it will or rely on it to have any particular involvement.

For other site terms of use, please go here. Additional important information about a16z, including our Form ADV Part 2A Brochure, is available at the SEC?s website, http://www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.

2020-12-16
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AlphaFold! Protein Folding, Beyond the Hype

In this episode of our show 16 Minutes -- where we talk about the headlines, and where we are on the long arc of tech trends -- we cover the news around Google DeepMind's AlphaFold system for predicting the 3-D structure of proteins outperforming 100 teams across 20 countries in the 14th Community Wide Assessment on the CASP (Critical Assessment of Structure Prediction) challenge. The challenge, which takes place every other year (over several months) tracks progress, key metrics, and state-of-the-art on predictive techniques for protein folding.

This isn?t just an academic challenge; it matters because proteins define and power ALL life functions, and as the saying goes, ?structure is function?: Figuring out the shapes that proteins assemble into is important in helping determine their functions and therefore potential applications (drug discovery, among other things). However, the astronomical number of possible structures for proteins -- and difficulty of figuring out these out (whether experimentally or computationally) from their amino-acid sequences alone -- has made it one of the grand challenges in biology. Some of the older techniques are described as "kind of like making a finger puppet to cast a shadow, and then trying to figure out what your fingers were like from the shadow"...

So is this grand protein folding problem really solved? Will it really revolutionize drug discovery? What's hype/ what's real when it comes to the buzz here; what are other applications; and what are the implications for open science, molecular biologists, computer scientists; big companies, startups? General partner Vijay Pande -- formerly professor of chemistry and structural biology and computer science, among other things at Stanford -- also founded the [email protected] project (which pioneered using distributed computing to solve the protein folding problem) and chats with Sonal Chokshi about whether this is a breakthrough or not. What is it, and where are we, really... ImageNet moment? E-MC2? Internet 1.0? Woodstock?!

other sources 

"?It will change everything?: DeepMind?s AI makes gigantic leap in solving protein structures", Ewen Callaway, Nature, 30 November 2020

"?The game has changed.? AI triumphs at solving protein structures", Robert Service, Science magazine, 30 November 2020

"DeepMind?s protein-folding AI has solved a 50-year-old grand challenge of biology", Will Heaven, Technology Review, 30 November 2020

images/ source: median accuracy in free-modeling category over the past 14 years; two protein targets and AlphaFold predicted structures compared against experimental result, both from the free modeling category / DeepMind

2020-12-07
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Transparency in Pricing, Ruling Healthcare

[simplecast-embed src="https://16minutes.simplecast.com/episodes/16mins-transparency-in-coverage-rules-cms-hhs-healthcare-pricing-cost-patients-payers-hospitals-comparison-competition?dark=true"]

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the latest in a series of ?historic" rules a few weeks ago; the controversial rules -- which have been in the works for a while, but are now final -- are intended to increase price transparency in (what's been described by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services? secretary as) a "shadowy system where prices are hidden". Specifically, the two rules will require hospitals, group health plans, and health insurance issuers to disclose price and cost-sharing information to participants, beneficiaries, and enrollees up front; give patients accurate estimates of the costs that they are responsible for, including making previously unavailable price information accessible to them and other stakeholders; and doing so in a standardized, machine-readable way that allows for easy comparisons (and therefore more choice and competition).

So in this episode of 16 Minutes, a16z bio experts Justin Larkin and general partner Julie Yoo (who also interviewed Dr. Marty Makary, author of The Price We Pay, on a previous episode) join Sonal Chokshi to discuss the specifics of, and the impact of, the rules on consumers and on various industry players. As is the premise of the show, they also break down the gap between what's hype/ what's real when it comes to mandates and implementation; while the rules go into effect January 2021, the deadlines roll out through 2024.

What are the tensions (and paradoxes!) between hospitals and insurers, between efficient markets and top-down policy, between price vs. cost, between planned vs. surprise costs, between shoppable and non-shoppable services, between price and quality, price and value? Where do incentives align (or not)? And what are the challenges, and opportunities, for builders?

2020-11-20
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Apple Silicon: A Long Game, Changing the Game

We cover the latest coming out of Apple?s event last week, where they announced the first new lineups of devices based on Apple Silicon M1 chips, which officially came out today. And since there?s already plenty of analysis on performance, benchmarks, and more, we cover the big picture: Apple?s moving away from Intel chips, and to their own chips (that run on the Arm instruction set); what does it all mean?

And given our penchant on this show for orienting where we are on the long arc of innovation, a16z board partner and former Microsoft Windows president Steven Sinofsky joins this episode (in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi) to take both a look backwards, and forwards, from this point in time: Beginning first with a quick history of Apple chips spanning decades, and then going into the implications for consumers, developers, future device form factors, and the industry as a whole. Is it the end of a long story... or the beginning?

links and references:

"The 2020 Mac Mini Unleashed: Putting Apple Silicon M1 to the Test", Andrei Frumusanu, AnandTech, 17 November 2020"Apple Announces the Apple Silicon M1: Ditching x86 - What to Expect, Based on A14", Andrei Frumusanu, AnandTech, 10 November 2020Apple M1 chip [specs and graphics]

 

The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-11-18
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Covid Vaccine! Beyond Science via Press Release

A vaccine for COVID seems to be (almost) here... or is it? What's hype/ what's real beyond the headlines (and beyond the press release), when it comes to the announcement earlier this week from Pfizer and BioNTech that their vaccine candidate was found to be more than 90% effective in preventing COVID-19? Of course, this was just the first interim efficacy analysis -- so how close or far are we? What's the significance of the readout and case numbers? How do we put this (and related approaches, like Moderna's) in context of all the other (458!) programs in development? And how much should/ shouldn't we read into this news?

After all, it's "difficult to evaluate science via press release", as some say. So in this episode of 16 Minutes with a16z bio general partners Vineeta Agarwala and Jorge Conde in conversation with Sonal Chokshi, we break it all down: the math, the science, and the practical considerations -- from "vaccine efficacy" vs. efficiency, from cold chains to distribution, from patients to the system... as well as from the past, to present future of, vaccines.

references and readings cited in this episode:

BioCentury.com/coronavirus, COVID-19 therapies and vaccines: Clinical; COVID-19 therapies and vaccines: Preclinical; COVID-19 Clinical Trial Dashboard, November 2020"Vaccine Efficacy 101: A biostatistician's primer", Natalie E. Dean, Twitter, September 2020"Understanding COVID-19 vaccine efficacy", Marc Lipsitch and Natalie E. Dean, Science, November 2020"Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer and BioNTech is strongly effective, early data from large trial indicate", Matthew Herper (with Helen Branswell), STAT, November 2020"A Framework for Equitable Allocation of Vaccine for the Novel Coronavirus", National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, October 2020 [report highlights pdf] [full report web preview]"I was part of a trial for Pfizer?s Covid-19 vaccine. It?s a miracle for genetic medicine.", Walter Isaacson, Washington Post, November 2020"On Vaccines and Vaccinology, in COVID and Beyond", with Rajeev Venkayya & Jorge Conde, a16z Podcast, August 2020
2020-11-14
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Gaming Is Among Us

Aliens are among us. Well, the online multiplayer game Among Us is -- a murder mystery set in space, where the group must figure out who the alien imposter is (a variation of party games like Werewolf or Mafia) -- has seemingly suddenly become very popular. And not just because a major politician livestream-played it earlier this week, which is what makes this news.

So on this episode of 16 Minutes on the News -- our show where we talk about what's in the headlines; tease apart what's hype/ what's real; and where we are on the long arc of innovation with related tech trends -- we cover:

Who, how, and why now? Especially since the game, from indie game company InnerSloth, has been around since 2018 -- what if it's NOT just "the pandemic effect" (where people are seeking new ways to connect);What are the underlying trends involved -- from social to streaming -- but digging in on the twists, and nuances, of both;What are the implications for startups and big companies when it comes to the gaming market, beyond this game?

All this and more, in less than 16 minutes, with a16z consumer team partner Jonathan Lai (formerly at Tencent games, Riot Games) in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi.

headlines & sources for stats/quotes cited in this episode:

"Everything to know about the game everyone is obsessing over", CNET [stats, roadmap]"Everyone's playing Among Us", New York Times [quote from Kotaku's Nathan Grayson]
2020-10-25
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A Nobel for CRISPR! When, Who, How, What Now

"It's CRISPR!" This week, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to scientists Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna (also an a16z co-founder, of Scribe Therapeutics), for the development of the CRISPR/Cas9 method for genome editing -- a technology that's "had a revolutionary impact on the life sciences, is contributing to new cancer therapies, and may make the dream of curing inherited diseases come true".

While many describe this technology as "genetic scissors", one of the sharpest tools, is that analogy too limited for describing the true power and potential of CRISPR as a gene-editing platform? And while the time between (unexpected) discovery to practice to award has been less than a decade -- further confirming that we're in the new century of biology! -- at what point does such discovery become engineering, that is, innovations we can use and systematize and scale (much like transistors)?

In this special episode of 16 Minutes, a16z general partners Vijay Pande and Jorge Conde, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi, examine the long arc and narrative of CRISPR, both backwards and forward; tease apart what's hype/ what's real in terms of where we really are, in practice; and... celebrate the incredible milestone this is. It's CRISPR!, and much more...

articles cited in this episode [see also related pieces below]

"Pioneers of revolutionary CRISPR gene editing win chemistry Nobel", Heidi Ledford & Ewen Callaway, Nature, 7 October 2020

"The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020", The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, NobelPrize.org, 7 October 2020

 

image: Bianca Fioretti / Wikimedia Commons

2020-10-10
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Nvidia + Arm

We cover the latest news since Nvidia (maker of GPUs among other things) announced its intent to acquire Arm (provider of silicon IP for system-on-chips inside billions of devices), arguing that "This combination has tremendous benefits for both companies, our customers, and the industry." But how so, when critics are worried about channel conflict, shepherding the broader ecosystem of users, and other issues? Some believe the deal may not go through, and there are also concerns about it for geopolitical reasons (U.S.-based Nvidia, UK-based Arm, China), so how do we tease apart "what's hype/ what's real" here when it comes to understanding the broader implications of the deal?

In this episode of our news analysis show, we go beyond the current headlines and focus on the deeper questions -- and longer history of computing innovation -- behind what a potential merger like this could mean for the industry. Given the various tech trends involved here -- from cloud-native and mobile-first to "ML inside", as well as computing going more and more to the edges -- where do and don't the (seemingly) inherent low-energy, low-cost advantages of the RISC architecture, or rather, Arm vs. Intel chip designs come in? Wherefore open source, could a consortium work? If value is always moving up the stack -- and the divisions between hardware, software, firmware, applications, etc. don't remain stable for a very long time -- who are the players that are really changing the game here... And what if it's the entire gameboard that's changed? Former Microsoft Windows president and a16z board partner Steven Sinofsky and a16z operating partner Frank Chen share their thoughts on all this and more with host Sonal Chokshi.
 

image: Adam Greig / Flickr

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

 

2020-10-03
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Tiktok and 'Seeing Like an Algorithm'

In one of our special "2x" episodes of 16 Minutes (32ish minutes;) -- our show where we quickly cover the headlines and tech trends, offering analysis, frameworks, explainers, and more -- we cover the algorithm that powers TikTok, the short video-sharing platform that grabbed massive marketshare in cultures and markets never experienced firsthand by the engineers and designers in China, beating out other apps in the United States. Now, with talk of U.S. ownership/partnership for TikTok, what happens if the algorithm isn't included in the deal? And what can we learn from the "creativity network effects" flywheel of TikTok; for "algorithm friendly" product design; and more broadly, about the future of video?

The news: Given the U.S. government calling for TikTok's business to be sold to U.S. owners last month, and several bidders coming in since, the latest news was that Oracle Corporation and Bytedance are hammering out an agreement for the former to be TikTok's "trusted tech partner" in the U.S. This could include (as reported by Axios) their exclusive ability to oversee all tech operations for TikTok in the U.S., including access and control of U.S. user data; ability to review source code and all updates to software for security vulnerabilities; and separate boards and entities for ensuring compliance with CFIUS/ U.S. policies (and for allowing ownership stakes for Oracle, with Walmart). The deal hasn't been approved yet [as of September 18, 2020].

The episode: But since this show is focused on where we are on the long arc of innovation, and what's hype/ what's real when it comes to tech trends & the news, where does the source code (and more specifically, the "For You Page" algorithm) -- which may or may not be included in the deal due to China's revised export controls -- come in? Yet it's not just about if TikTok is really TikTok without it, or whether "the algorithm" and machine learning training data can be recreated... the real question is: How does the "creativity network effects" flywheel work between video creation and distribution -- from origination to mutation to dissemination? It boils down to the idea of "algorithm friendly design", observes Eugene Wei, who has written a series of deep dives on TikTok, and formerly led product at Hulu, Flipboard, and video at Oculus, among other things. So what does TikTok, regardless of deal outcome, suggest about the future of product development, and more broadly, the future of video? All this and more in this 2x+ long explainer episode of 16 Minutes.

 

image: Eliza Petersen

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This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-09-18
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Apple and the 'Doctor?s Office on a Wrist'

We cover the latest coming out of Apple's event yesterday, focusing on their new watches (including a lower price model); new sensors (including blood oxygen); and services for healthcare. Is always-on, (relatively) low-cost, passive monitoring for fitness and mainstream consumers really, finally the wedge into data for clinical applications as well? What features -- cost, efficacy, battery power, convenience, data, business model -- do and don't matter when it comes to filling in the gaps between the doctor's office and our mobile selves, families, home care?

We take an, ahem, "pulse check" on where we are when it comes to the idea of the "doctor's office on a wrist". To help tease apart what's hype/ what's real here, as is the premise of this show, a16z bio general partner Vijay Pande and Rachel Kalmar chat for ~16ish minutes with host Sonal Chokshi. Where do Singapore's initiatives with wearables (which we discussed in a previous episode) come in? What about data use by providers; what are the policy considerations? Data scientist (and former Berkman-Klein Center for Internet & Society fellow) Kalmar actually holds the world record for number of wearable sensors worn continuously, has been wearing all kinds of watches and wearables on her wrist for a long time, and has seen the industry evolve first hand, so shares her vantage points there as well.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-09-17
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A Faster, Cheaper Test -- Will It Really Democratize Coronavirus Testing?

In this episode of 16 Minutes, we cover the recent news around the FDA's Emergency Use Authorization approval of Abbott Lab's latest COVID-19 test, which takes 15 minutes and will cost $5. At that speed and price point -- as well as the fact that it doesn't require lab equipment at point of care -- it should definitely increase testing capacity, making it a potential "game changer" in this pandemic... But does it truly democratize coronavirus testing (in an available-to-everyone-everywhere way)? How is and isn't it like a pregnancy test, and when or how would we be able to administer it everywhere and by anyone?

To help tease apart what's hype/ what's real -- as is the premise of this show -- a16z bio general partner Vineeta Agarwala breaks it all down with host Sonal Chokshi in ~18 minutes. The conversation provides an overview of RT-PCR vs. antigen test types (and differences between "rapid" versions of both); digs into what the data does and doesn?t tell us here; and explains key concepts that everyone needs to know, including the "positive predictive value", which has implications for widespread detection and testing. Agarwala (who is also a practicing physician) also briefly touches on practical considerations from the clinical perspective... what do we really need when the winter flu season hits?

articles cited/ related reading

"Medicine?s Uncomfortable Relationship with Math: Calculating Positive Predictive Value", by Arjun Manrai, Gaurav Bhatia, Judith Strymish, et al, in JAMA Internal Medicine, June 2014
https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1861033

 

image: Abbott

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-09-02
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Teladoc & Livongo, Is Virtual Care Fully Here?

In this episode of 16 Minutes -- our show where we cover recent headlines; tease apart what's hype/ what's real; and help orient where we are, trends-wise, on the long arc of innovation -- we cover the merger of Teladoc and Livongo, which was announced just a few days ago. The $18.5B deal is a big deal not just because of the dollars and validation in public markets, but because it's aimed at creating "the first true health tech giant", and an end-to-end digital health platform at scale. However, the scale and opportunity in healthcare is so massive -- this is akin to a reasonably sized hospital system -- that this may be a drop in the bucket of what's out there.

And beyond the buzz, where are we, really, when it comes to the broader category here of virtual care? What's our taxonomy of key trends and shifts such as telehealth/ telemedicine, remote patient monitoring, and virtual care? Given that this deal and virtual care itself was accelerated during the pandemic -- is "the pandemic effect" a harbinger or will we see the rubber band snap back once things go "back to normal" (is THIS the new normal)? Where do specific policies and regulations come in, such as for reimbursement, physician licensing, and more?

General partners Julie Yoo and Vijay Pande break it all down in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi. We also discuss what it takes, practically, to not just merge the two entities but meet in the middle of the spectrum; what the implications are for incumbents (including payers and providers) and startups; and where go-to-market and partnerships come in. Distribution, as always, is everything.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-08-10
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GPT-3, Beyond the Hype

In this special "2x" explainer episode of 16 Minutes -- where we talk about what's in the news, and where we are on the long arc of various tech trends -- we cover all the buzz around GPT-3, the pre-trained machine learning model that's optimized to do a variety of natural-language processing tasks. The paper about GPT-3 was released in late May, but OpenAI (the AI "research and deployment" company behind it) only recently released private access to its API or application programming interface, which includes some of the technical achievements behind GPT-3 as well as other models.

It's a commercial product, built on research; so what does this mean for both startups AND incumbents... and the future of "AI as a service"? And given that we're seeing all kinds of (cherrypicked!) examples of output from OpenAI's beta API being shared -- from articles and press releases and screenplays and Shakespearean poetry to business advice to "ask me anything" search and even designing webpages and plug-ins that turn words into code and even does some arithmetic too -- how do we know how good it really is or isn't? And when we things like founding principles for a new religion or other experiments that are being shared virally (like "TikTok videos for nerds"), how do we know the difference between "looks like" a toy and "is" a toy (especially given that many innovations may start out so)?

And finally, where are we, really, in terms of natural language processing and progress towards artificial general intelligence? Is it intelligent, does that matter, and how do we know (if not with a Turing Test)? Finally, what are the broader questions, considerations, and implications for jobs and more? Frank Chen (who's shared a primer on AI/machine learning/deep learning as well as resources for getting started in building products with AI inside and more) explains what "it" actually is and isn't; where it fits in the taxonomy of neural networks, deep learning approaches, and more in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi. And the two help tease apart what's hype/ what's real here... as is the theme of this show.

 

image source: Gwern.net

2020-07-29
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Funding Science & Innovation; Remote Work & Future Silicon Valley

This holiday break episode of 16 Minutes on the News (#36) covers two timely and still developing-news topics:

#1 The National Science Foundation could rebrand as the National Science AND Technology Foundation -- as well as get up to $100B more in funding for 10 focus areas among other things -- if a new bipartisan proposal called the "Endless Frontiers Act" (inspired by the name of this Vannevar Bush memo that led to the NSF being created 70 years ago) goes through.

What does this mean for U.S. competitiveness, corporate innovation, startups, and science vs. engineering vs. business? a16z general partner Martin Casado (who has worked the full spectrum from research lab to academia to startup to to big company and more) weighs in...

#2 10:21 A whole spate of companies announced they're going remote, not just during and extending beyond the pandemic but permanently, using language such as "remote first", "digital by default" and more.

So is this the new normal? What are the considerations, practices, and tooling involved here? Will this trend extend beyond tech jobs and tech companies (has it already)? What could it mean for the future of Silicon Valley? a16z general partner David Ulevitch and operating partner Chris Lyons (who runs the Cultural Leadership Fund) take a quick pulse-check on what's going on...

...with host Sonal Chokshi.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-07-10
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Apple App Clips, Program the Offline World!

A number of features were announced at Apple's WWDC/ Worldwide Developers Conference this week, but this episode of 16 Minutes on the News focuses on just one: Apple's "App Clips" coming to iOS14. Because App Clips -- small, lightweight, fast, parts of a full app that can quickly execute just one specific action for users in context, when and where they need them -- and App Clip Codes -- stickers that encode a URL and incorporate an NFC tag so the code can be scanned by camera, much like QR codes -- are part of a growing trend. Other examples include Snap Minis, announced at Snap's recent Partner Summit (and which we discussed on 16 Minutes last week in the context of messaging/ HTML5 games); Google's Instant Apps (2018); and We Chat's Mini Programs in China (2017).

Such mini-apps are sort of like bookmarks or shortcuts to digital destinations dropped all over our physical world, connecting online to offline through smartphone. But what are they, really? What are the use cases for businesses and brands big and small; where do (and don't) the parallels to WeChat apply; and what are the broader implications for discovery, super apps, and the future of context-aware computing... especially when more mainstream AR glasses arrive to, er, augment smartphones?

But: people have also been talking about this kind of thing for decades... is this time really different? We discuss in this week's episode with with a16z general partner Connie Chan and special guest Dan Frommer -- former editor in chief at Recode and founder and publisher of The New Consumer -- in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi.

related headlines/ background reading:"Why Apple's new 'App Clips' matter", The New Consumer, June 2020, @Fromedome"Someone, please, explain: WTF are App Clips exactly?", Gizmodo, June 2020, @vicmsongon "mini programs": what they are, how they work in WeChatexamples 2017-2019 by @ConnieChan

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-06-29
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Videogames as Medicines -- So What Is/Isn't a Digital Drug?

The FDA just approved the first ever videogame that can now be legally marketed and prescribed as a medicine. It's a game called EndeavorRX (formerly known as Project EVO and developed by Akili Interactive based on technology licensed from a neuroscience lab at the University of California San Francisco) -- and is for 8-12 year olds with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD.

So where does this fit in the broader category of "digital therapeutics", which have proven to be effective as therapeutics as in the case of the Diabetes Prevention Program administered by Omada Health (which itself was one of the first to get Medicare reimbursement 4 years ago) -- and are especially lauded for their scalability and accessibility (and without toxicity). But... what is a digital therapeutic, really? The term was advanced initially to distinguish the category from wellness gadgets, now, however the question is how standalone does it have to be,  how targeted does it need to be? The current example was approved after 7 years of clinical trials with 600 children, but how do we know the results, which were mixed, sustain over time -- especially given that these are administered very differently from pills... or are they? [We also go deep on the data, design of the study, and more in our sister show for research papers, Journal Club.]

Finally, what are the implications for value-based pricing, regulation, and where does real-world evidence come in here? We debate and discuss all this in this week's episode of 16 Minutes on the News, with a16z partners Vijay Pande and Justin Larkin (former physician and entrepreneur who was most recently at Google Verily) and external guest Nikhil Krishnan (who covered digital health as an analyst at CB Insights, and now publishes the industry newsletter Out of Pocket). So what happens when software becomes a drug?

This week, we have two separate episodes of 16 Minutes, both about gaming -- but based on very different news  -- be sure to also check out the other episode, on broader implications of Snap's recent announcements for mobile, social, cloud gaming, identity and where we are on the arc of innovation for those trends. 

related headlines/ background reading:"FDA approves first therapeutic videogame", Endpoints News, June 2020, @JasonmMast"...Games just became medicine", The Verge, June 2020, Sean Hollister @StarFire2258"Prescription videogames may be the future of medicine", The Verge, July 2017, @LaurenGoode"Can 'digital therapeutics' be as good as drugs?", Technology Review, April 2017, @ChrissyFarr
2020-06-21
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Snapchat & Bitmoji: Mobile, Social, Cloud Gaming, Identity

At last week's Snap Partner Summit, a number of announcements -- including a navigation redesign and Bitmoji for Games -- have broader implications for the gaming industry and beyond. Especially when such messaging games, built on HTML5 and "mini programs" or apps-within-apps (as discussed by Connie Chan in context of WeChat and more), merge the key trends of mobile, social, and cloud gaming; in fact, they:

could be a serious contender in the "cloud gaming" wars, but coming at it from the low end of the market (as in classic disruption theory);have inherent multiplayer virality, thanks to the original social network/ social graph of one's phone book;are not only built social-first (e.g., not as an afterthought to gameplay), but can incorporate personal expression through avatars and identity across games; andcould layer on maps as social networks and AR filters (and marketplaces) as other ways to extend gaming and monetization.

We break it all down in this week's episode of 16 Minutes on the News with a16z consumer partners on gaming Jonathan Lai (formerly head of BD for Tencent North America and former product manager at Riot Games) and Andrew Green (who worked at Take-Two Interactive, Atari, Electronic Arts, and TinyCo) in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi... what do such announcements-as-news tell us about where we are and where we're going on the long arc of innovation?

This week, we have two separate episodes of 16 Minutes, both about gaming -- but based on very different news  -- be sure to also check out the other episode, on the first videogame approved by the FDA as a prescription medicine for ADHD. 

related headlines/ background reading:"Snapchat redesigns its app with new action bar", TechCrunch June 2020, @RomainDillet"Snap lets you play as your Bitmoji in third-party games", TechCrunch June 2020, @RomainDilleton "mini programs": what they are, how they work in WeChatexamples 2017-2019 by @ConnieChanon Google Maps as social network and more 2018 @eugenewei

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-06-21
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Section 230 CDA: Content Moderation, Free Speech, the Internet

In this special "2x" episode (#32) of our news show 16 Minutes -- where we quickly cover the headlines and tech trends, offering analysis, frameworks, explainers, and more -- we cover the tricky but important topic of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. The 1996 law has been in the headlines a lot recently, in the context of Twitter, the president's tweets, and an executive order put out by the White House just this week on quote- "preventing online censorship". All of this is playing out against the broader, more profound cultural context and events around the death of George Floyd in Minnesota and beyond, and ongoing old-new debates around content moderation on social media.

To make sense of only the technology and policy aspects of Section 230 specifically -- and where the First Amendment, content moderation, and more come in -- a16z host Sonal Chokshi brings on our first-ever outside guest for 16 Minutes, Mike Masnick, founder of the digital-native policy think tank Copia Institute and editor of the longtime news & analysis site Techdirt.com (which also features an online symposium for experts discussing difficult policy topics). Masnick has written extensively about these topics -- not just recently but for years -- along with others in media recently attempting to explain what's going on and dissect what the executive order purports to do (some are even tracking different versions as well).

So what's hype/ what's real -- given this show's throughline! -- around what CDA 230 precisely does and doesn't do, the role of agencies like the FCC, and more? What are the nuances and exceptions, and how do we tease apart the most common (yet incorrect) rhetorical arguments such as "platform vs. publisher", "like a utility/ phone company", "public forum/square" and so on? Finally: how does and doesn't Section 230 connect to the First Amendment when it comes to companies vs. governments; what does "good faith" really mean and what are possible paths and ways forward among the divisive debates around content moderation? All this and more in this 2x+ long explainer episode of 16 Minutes.

2020-05-31
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The Security and Privacy of Contact Tracing

While governments, policymakers, and employers around the world are all figuring out how to reopen the economy, contact tracing -- which includes identifying and warning contacts of exposure in order to stop chains of transmission -- is a key strategy for preventing further spread of a disease like COVID-19.

But approaches vary from manual to automated. And different regions have different frameworks, whether combined with GPS (location data) and CCTV as in South Korea -- or mainly Bluetooth-based, as in Singapore and elsewhere. The players and apps also vary in whether they're from corporations, grassroots/citizen efforts; employer-facing or for widespread public-health surveillance; or even just open vs. closed, decentralized vs. centralized, and so on.

So we break it all down in this week's episode of 16 Minutes on the News with Joel de la Garza, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi, given headlines around Apple and Google?s approach, called "privacy-safe contact tracing". What ARE the security and privacy concerns here? Yet technology is not the biggest part of this discussion; it?s also about rights, cultures, and values... and the bigger questions around what happens when people are "transformed into cellphone signals".

2020-05-23
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CRISPR for Covid Testing and FDA EUAs

As calls for better, faster, cheaper, portable testing for COVID-19 disease are heard around the world -- given the important role of test-trace-isolate in re-opening the economy! -- the FDA recently issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for a CRISPR-based diagnostic.

It's the first authorized use of CRISPR technology for an infectious disease test. So we discuss this topic in this week's episode of 16 Minutes -- our show where we cover the news headlines, tease apart what's hype/what's real from our vantage point in tech, and share where we are on the overall arc of various trends -- covering:

where are we with testing for COVID overall given the taxonomy of what's already here and what's coming;where are we with CRISPR technology, given that this is the one of the first times it's being used for diagnostics vs. therapeutics (and that clinical trials are only coming of age there now;how does this work, and how does this type of CRISPR compare to the PCR approach for testing; andhow do EUAs and more play out given past policy debates and discussions of CRISPR and gene editing

...with a16z general partner Jorge Conde and bio deal team partner Andy Tran, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.

On 16 Minutes, we also offer frameworks for thinking about the topics covered, so we also discuss: the tradeoffs between specificity and sensitivity when it comes to testing, especially when there's a big difference in false positives in testing for the disease vs. testing for antibodies; the tradeoffs between decentralized vs. centralized testing (getting the sample to the test or getting the test to the sample), especially given the potential for pregnancy-kit like tests here; and the tradeoffs between specific, scalable, and sensible testing ...Is it possible to have it all when it comes to CRISPR??

2020-05-17
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The Case of Zoom and Scaling Cloud Security

Zoom has not only experienced unprecedented, rapid growth (from 10M to 200M daily active users) due to the coronavirus pandemic and shelter-in-place -- but is also seeing a shift in use cases from primarily enterprise to more consumer as well. At the same time, there have been several security issues and concerns around Zoom, including "zoombombing" porn; home-grown encryption; and key-management systems, servers, and engineers in China.

The company had to correct and clarify the record as a result, but what does it mean to have enterprise-grade security How worried should we be (and who should worry) given that everyone from cycling classes and children's classes are now all online, many on Zoom or on related remote communication tools and applications? Especially now that healthcare providers (thanks to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civic Rights loosening up its enforcement of HIPAA regulations and related rules) are also serving patients "wherever they are during this national public health emergency?... 

What's hype/what's real in the headlines here? In this episode of 16 Minutes, a16z general partner David Ulevitch (former SVP/GM at Cisco), and operating partner for security Joel de la Garza (former CSO of Box) break it all down in 16+ minutes with Sonal Chokshi. What does it all mean for related tech trends in bottom-up SaaS -- from user onboarding and the flip side of "earning the right to be complicated" to pricing & packaging -- as well as for open source; and cloud security, particularly when it comes to video?

2020-04-12
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Drugs & Debates: Real World Data, Randomized Controlled Trials

If the best way to know whether a medicine is effective is through a clinical trial, then where does (and doesn't) real-world data and real-world evidence come in? The topic is always top of mind in drug development, with additional focus as of 2016 thanks to the 21st Century Cures Act -- but is especially heated lately given recent concerns and claims around particular drugs in the context of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

So in this short-but-deep dive episode of 16 Minutes on the News, a16z general partner in bio Vijay Pande -- previously a professor of Chemistry, Structural Biology, and Computer Science at Stanford University (as well as founder of [email protected]) -- breaks down the debate between RWE vs. RCT (real world evidence and randomized controlled trials), in conversation with Sonal Chokshi. Is it a tradeoff between speed of innovation and safety, or is it a false dichotomy altogether? Where do and don't statistics come in when it comes to policy? How has, and could, the role of the FDA (as well as payers reimbursing healthcare) evolve here? And where can technology help?

2020-03-29
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The Economic Virus - Monetary Policy, Fiscal Policy, and Small Business

The U.S. Federal Reserve recently made a range of moves -- from cutting interest rates to near zero (which it also did in the 2008 financial crisis) and using other tools -- to support "the flow of credit to households and businesses, thereby promote its maximum employment and price stability goals" during this current pandemic and public health crisis.

However... what does this mean for small businesses, which may be most impacted? What's the difference between monetary and fiscal policy here; where does rhetoric (such as around buybacks vs. dividends) confuse; how does adjudication and disbursement work... and where could technology come in?

In this short-but-deep dive episode of 16 Minutes on the News, a16z general partner on fintech Alex Rampell -- who also covered quantitative easing and more on a previous episode -- breaks it all down in 18 minutes, with useful analogies, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.  How do we stop not just the novel coronavirus, but the economic virus, too?

 

image: Edna Winti / Flickr

2020-03-22
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Hospitals' Historic Moment & the New Data Rules

This episode of 16 Minutes on the News covers the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' "historic rules" to provide patients more control of their data. They've been a long time coming, and despite recent fights over them, the final rules are now finally here as of this week.

So in this short but deep dive, a16z bio experts -- general partner Julie Yoo and Venkat Mocherla in market development (in conversation with Sonal Chokshi) -- go into:

0:47 how the rules fit into our healthcare system, especially with everything else going on right now in hospitals and beyond;3:11-8:37 what the rules specifically are and why they matter;6:21 concrete examples including why things like notifications are important;8:42 implications for providers and payers, including examples such as prior authorization;11:10 where privacy concerns do and don't come in, given how much information is contained in records;13:40 implications for startups, tech incumbents, and traditional players in healthcare, and new types of data down the road; and18:27 the bottomline.
2020-03-14
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Gaming & Chrome OS/Steam; Going Cashless; Coronavirus Latest

This episode of 16 Minutes on the news covers:

Google could bring Steam support to Chrome OS, according to an earlier unconfirmed report, and what that could mean for the broader gaming ecosystem, developers as well as devices -- with a16z general partner Andrew Chen and Jonathan Lai on the consumer team;New York restaurants and retail establishments can no longer reject cash payments under legislation that was passed by the City Council there; what this says about the banking system more broadly, why it's a regressive tax on the poor and therefore a progressive move -- at 8:57 with a16z general partner Alex Rampell on the fintech team;updates on COVID-19 disease -- at 16:44 based on latest reports from WHO and CDC as of Friday March 6.

...with Sonal Chokshi.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-03-08
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What's Up With All These Fintech Acquisitions; SEC Rules

This episode of 16 Minutes on the news covers:

all the recent fintech acquisitions! from Intuit announcing it's acquiring Credit Karma this week to Morgan Stanley announcing it's acquiring E-trade last week to Visa acquiring Plaid last month, and so on -- what?s going on, why, and why now? -- with a16z general partner Anish Acharya;recent hearing on SEC's complaint against Telegram, which turns out not to be about cryptocurrency at large, a particular subset of cryptocurrencies, or whether a cryptocurrencly is inherently a security -- but may have broader implications for policy and policy making -- at 7:57 with a16z managing partner Scott Kupor;

...in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

 

2020-02-28
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Coronavirus Updates

This episode covers the latest updates since our previous deep-dive on the novel coronavirus outbreak. We cover the latest developments -- new name, new declarations, new numbers, new definitions -- as well as:

practical implications for the U.S. healthcare system given how it works today, and where we might go in the future -- with a16z general partner Julie Yoo, given our vantage point in tech; andhow the rt-PCR test works, and other updates about what the data do and don't tell us, and whether and what terms are useful or not -- with a16z bio partner Judy Savitskaya;

...in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.

Sources for this episode and/or other background links:latest numbers: cases in the U.S. (CDC, as of February 17, 2020); global cases (WHO situation report #25, February 14, 2020); spike in diagnosing cases as reported in China (SCMP, Scott Gottlieb)situation & policy statements/reports: CDC summary (as of February 14, 2020); "Annual report on global preparedness for health emergencies", WHO (Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, 2019)on definitions (of pandemics, endemics), other terms, and various naming conventions: "Understanding pandemics: What they mean, what they don't mean, and what comes next with the coronavirus", Helen Branswell, StatNews (February 12, 2020); on disease occurrence and levels (CDC); "misinfodemic"; best practices on naming new human infectious diseases (WHO); qPCR (Keith Robison)

image: 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), CDC, via Wikimedia Commons

2020-02-19
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Epic Battles in Healthcare, FICO Changes

This episode of 16 Minutes on the news covers:

FICO credit score changes, what are they, do they matter? -- with a16z fintech general partners Angela Strange and Anish Acharya;electronic health record provider Epic's letter urging hospitals to oppose government regulations that would make it easier for patients and companies to access medical information, and where is the Plaid of healthcare? -- at 10:19 with a16z bio general partner Julie Yoo;

...in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.

Background links / pieces mentioned in this episode:Changes are coming to your credit score, Anna Bahney, CNN BusinessFICO changes could lower your credit score, AnnaMaria Andriotis, Wall Street JournalEpic?s CEO is urging hospital customers to oppose rules that would make it easier to share medical info & Epic and about 60 hospital chains come out against rules that would make it easier to share medical info, Chrissy Farr, CNBCHealth care data-sharing rules touch off intense lobbying fight, Darius Tahir, Politico

 

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2020-02-07
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Coronavirus Outbreak

This episode of 16 Minutes on the news from a16z is all about the recent coronavirus outbreak -- or rather, a new type of coronavirus called 2019-nCoV for 2019 novel coronavirus. Since it's an ongoing and fast-developing news cycle, we take a quick snapshot for where we are, what we know, and what we don't know, and discuss the vantage point of where tech comes in. Topics covered include:

definition of a virus, categories of coronavirusesorigins and spreadhow this stacks up so far against SARS and MERSspeed of sequencing, implications of genomic infospeed of information sharingR0 ("r-naught"/"nought") and what it measuresdifferent ways to think about how bad a given epidemic iscurrent moves and treatments

Our a16z guest is Judy Savitskaya on the bio team, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi.

Link sources or background readings for this episode:Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) + typesWorld Health Organization (in the United Nations) -- situation report #6, January 26Other background readings / pieces mentioned in this episode: "Scientists are moving at record speed to create new coronavirus vaccines--but they may come too late", Jon Cohen, Science (AAAS), January 27"Clinical features of patients infected with 2019 novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China", The Lancet, January 24"Discovery of a novel coronavirus associated with the recent pneumonia outbreak in humans and its potential bat origin", bioRxiv, January 2 *note - preprint, NOT peer reviewed*"The deceptively simple number sparking coronavirus fears", Ed Yong, The Atlantic, January 28 *this appeared AFTER this episode was recorded, so sharing here as additional reading only*
2020-01-30
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CES 2020 - Screens, 8K, 5G, Cars, Micromobility, Smart Home

This episode of our news show teases apart what was just a concept, what's near from the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2020). Board partner Steven Sinofsky (in conversation with Sonal Chokshi) takes us on a quick tour of the based on his annual field trip report from the floor.

Topics covered include:

folding screens and 8K displays5G, wi-fi 6, new millimeter wave 5Gtransportation: cars, voice, micromobilitysmart home automation and securitybatteries and USB-C

Articles/ headlines in this episode:

CES 2020: The Primordial Soup of Innovation by Steven Sinofsky, Learning by ShippingEight big takeways from CES 2020 by Dieter Bohn, The Verge
2020-01-18
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Regulating AI; Negative Interest Rates (#19)

In this 19th episode of our news show, where we cover recent headlines from our vantage point in tech, we cover the following news items (in conversation with Sonal Chokshi):

recent moves to regulate artificial intelligence (AI) software including the White House's recent guidance (and op-ed from the U.S. CTO) on AI in general, as well as limits to exports of specific AI software that went into effect this week -- with operating partner Frank Chen (whose talk was cited in an earlier White House report);recent activity on the topic of negative interest rates as well as quantitative easing, given recent remarks (and paper) from former chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke -- with general partner Alex Rampell, who covers all things fintech.
2020-01-13
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Personal Genomics - Hype vs Reality (#18)

For our first episode of 2020 -- #18 of our show 16 Minutes, where we cover recent headlines, the a16z way, from our vantage point in tech, and especially what's hype/ what's real -- we do one of our special deep-dive episodes on a single topic: personal genomics.

It?s a turn of the decade ? and January-appropriate! ? look backward/ look forward given recent and past retrospective and prospective pieces in the media on the promise, and perils, of the ability to sequence one?s DNA and what it means for personalized medicine, criminal investigations, privacy, and so on.

Our a16z expert for this episode is general partner Jorge Conde, who has a long history in the space, in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi. They cover everything from where genealogy databases and large datasets come in to fetal testing, multi-omics, and much more spanning past, present, and future.

2020-01-06
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Star Wars in Fortnite; Encryption Ultimatum (#17)

On this show, we cover recent headlines, the a16z Podcast way -- what?s hype, what?s real; why they matter from our vantage point in tech -- and this week, we cover the following news (in conversation with Sonal Chokshi):

Star War trailer premieres in... Fortnite? What's the significance of the latest Star Wars trailer debuting inside a video game over a movie theater or TV or even YouTube and Facebook? It has to do with the bigger picture of games, social networks, and virtual worlds; so what are the implications for marketers, game developers, and how we will live/work/play? -- with Jonathan Lai, consumer teamCongress warns tech companies to take action on encryption... or else! Concerned about protecting the most vulnerable Americans and devices "going dark" to law enforcement (especially given "several serious cases where we can't access the device in the time period where it is most important for us to access it"), Congress recently sent a warning to tech companies to get their "act together" on encryption... or else "we will impose our will on you", by this time next year. But what if we're having the wrong conversation to break the deadlock, and what conversation could we be having? -- with Martin Casado, general partner, and operating partner for security Joel de la GarzaRelevant/ related links:on gaming State of play: Six trends revolutionizing gaming by Jonathan Lai and Andrew ChenNew business models for gaming [podcast] with Kevin Chou, Chris Dixon, and Sonal ChokshiCome for the games, stay for the party [podcast] with Andrew Chen, Jonathan Lai, and Lauren MurrowTech trends changing gaming [podcast] with Tim Shafer, Justin Bailey, Herman Narula, and Sonal Chokshion security16 steps to securing your data (and life) by Joel de la Garza
2019-12-21
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Direct Listings NYSE SEC; Vaping Apps & Apple, CBD & FDA (#16)

This is the 16th episode of 16 Minutes, our news show where we cover the top headlines, the a16z Podcast way: what?s real / what?s hype; why they matter from our vantage point in tech.

This week, we cover the following news (in conversation with Sonal Chokshi):

NYSE & SEC back and forth over direct listings -- The NYSE recently proposed allowing companies to raise capital during direct listings (currently, they're different than IPOs in that there is no offering); the SEC rejected it; and they just filed a new proposal... but beyond this news and these artifacts, what's the bigger picture when it comes to other structural factors involved here? -- with Scott Kupor.vaping apps & Apple; FDA & CBD-- two recent moves: Apple banning 181 vaping apps from its app store, FDA issuing warning letters against 15 companies with products that have CBD in them; what's our quick take on the blurring lines between these two seemingly different bits of news? -- with Vijay Pande.Relevant/ related links:IPOs, direct listings, more:beyond the opening bell: what do (and don't) IPOs tell us about companies? by Scott Kupordirect listings, the myths and the facts [podcast] with Stacey Cunningham, Barry McCarthy, and Sonal Chokshiall about direct listings with Jamie McGurkthe curious case (and the behind-the-scenes story of) the OpenTable IPO [podcast] with Jeff Jordan, J.D. Moriarty, and Sonal Chokshion capital formation, smaller companies, and IPOs [testimony] by Scott Kupor

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-12-16
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Alternative Data for Credit; Retail Shopping Shifts (#15)

This is the 15th episode of 16 Minutes, our news show where we cover the top headlines, the a16z Podcast way: what?s real / what?s hype; what's interesting from our vantage point in tech. This week (after a brief hiatus for our annual innovation event and November holidays), we cover the following news... in conversation with Sonal Chokshi:

use of alternative data in credit underwriting -- Five federal regulatory agencies (the Federal Reserve Board, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of the Controller of the Currency, and the National Credit Union Administration) recently issued a joint statement on the use of alternative data in credit underwriting; what does this news really indicate, and what are the implications for both consumers and companies? -- with Seema Amble and Rex Salisbury;big annual shopping days and retail trends -- From Black Friday to Cyber Monday to Singles' Day and Prime Day and seemingly unprecedented sales, where are we in the shift from offline to online commerce, on the so-called "death of retail", and on other tech (chatbots, logistics) changing shopping? -- with Jeff Jordan and Connie Chan.Relevant/ related links:credit, banking, data:use of cash-flow data in underwriting credit: empirical findings via FinRegLaba brief history of credit cards (or, what actually happens when you swipe) [animated video] with Alex Rampellon managing risk and uncertainty with Angela Strangeon non-bank financial firms (aka fintech is eating the world) by Angela Strangeon money, risk, and software [podcast] with Alex Rampellretail, logistics, etc.:the golden era of productivity, retail, supply chains [podcast] with Marc Levinson, Hanne Tidnam, and Sonal Chokshiwhere's my stuff, the lowdown on logistics and ops [podcast] with Jeff Jordanonline to offline 2.0 - experiments and examples from China with Connie Chanonline to offline (O2O) commerce by Alex Rampell the tipping point (e-commerce version) by Jeff Jordanso you want to compete with Amazon? by Jeff Jordan

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-12-16
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Pharma Drones; Veteran Health Records; Light to Voice Hacks (#14)

This is the 14th episode of 16 Minutes, our weekly-ish news show where we quickly cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z Podcast way: what?s real, what?s hype from our vantage point in tech. This week, we cover the following news -- with a16z experts general partner Julie Yoo and market dev partner Venkat Mocherla from the bio team, and former CSO/ a16z security operating partner Joel de la Garza -- in conversation with Sonal Chokshi:

UPS drones deliver prescriptions -- For the first time ever, drones delivered prescription medication directly to residential homes and retirement homes in North Carolina this month; but why don't we already get drugs by delivery? And what's the significance of pharma as a node in the healthcare system?Apple opens health records to vets -- Apple and the Department of Veterans Affairs announced recently that veterans can now access their health information on their iPhones; why is (or isn't) this significant, and wherefore the promise of EHRs (electronic health records)?!hackers can use lasers to command voice devices -- Security researchers were able to send laser-powered ?light commands? to smart assistants (including products like Amazon?s Alexa, Apple?s Siri, Facebook?s Portal, and Google Assistant) to take full control over them at specific distances; how worried should we be, and how does this affect the future of a voice-enabled world?Relevant/ related links:on healthcare delivery and the pharma industry:software eats care delivery by Julie Yooscience, business, and innovation in pharma with Vas Narasimhan, Jorge Conde, Vijay Pande, and Sonal Chokshion hacks of all kinds:https://a16z.com/tag/hacked/
2019-11-15
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Ok Boomer; Microtransaction Fraud in Games (#13)

This is the 13th episode of 16 Minutes, our weekly-ish news show where we quickly cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z Podcast way: what?s real, what?s hype from our vantage point in tech. This week, we cover the following news -- with a16z experts general partner Connie Chan and D'arcy Coolican from the consumer team, and former CSO/ a16z security operating partner Joel de la Garza -- in conversation with Sonal Chokshi:

OK Boomer meme and meaning -- What makes this meme news, given current and coming tech trends around meme-to-merchandise, ecommerce, video, app design, the future of social... and the overall zeitgeist between generations and cultural transitions?fraud in gaming microtransactions/ trading -- Is money laundering really happening through gaming microtransactions? What to make of Valve's recent restriction that Counter-Strike: Global Offensive container keys cannot be traded or sold on the Steam marketplace because they are now "believed to be fraud-sourced" by worldwide fraud networks?Relevant/ related links:on Ok Boomer:on ecommerce as video's killer app by Connie Chan & Avery Segalon short-form video and the rise of AI-based consumer apps by Connie Chanon when advertising isn't enough, and the shift from "eyeballs" to "wallets" by Connie Chanon design by livestream (as well as other trends from China) by Connie Chanon memes and livestreaming in China with Connie Chan, Christina Xu, and Sonal Chokshion the rise of the super app by Connie Chanon gaming economies:on crypto and new business models for gaming with Kevin Chou, Chris Dixon, and Sonal Chokshi

credits: @linzrinzz on TikTok

2019-11-04
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Crypto Regulations; ATM Fees (#12)

This is the 11th episode of 16 Minutes, our weekly news show where we quickly cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z Podcast way: what?s real, what?s hype from our vantage point in tech. This week, we cover the following news -- with a16z experts managing partner Scott Kupor and general partner in fintech Angela Strange, respectively, in conversation with Sonal Chokshi:

crypto & regulation/policy updates from the SEC and IRS -- including the SEC releasing an announcement that it settled charges for an unregistered ICO, and the IRS' issuing guidance (in the form of a revenue ruling and answers to FAQs) on tax treatment for hard forks and air drops;ATM fees at record highs -- where it was reported that it now costs ~$4.72 (vs. $1.97 in 1998, as tracked by Bankrate.com) to withdraw money from ATMs not owned by one's bank, which disproportionately falls on low-income people in neighborhoods banks tend to avoidFor relevant background/ related links:on crypto & regulation:"Kik and the SEC: What's Going on and What Does It Mean for Crypto?" by Katie Haun"Analogies, the Big Picture, and Considerations for Regulating Crypto" by Scott Kupor & Sonal Chokshion ATM fees and "banking the unbanked":"The Next 3 Billion in Financial Services" by Angela Strange

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-10-20
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CRISPR: Policy, Platform, Trials (#11)

This is the 11th episode of 16 Minutes, a weekly show where we quickly cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z Podcast way: why are these topics in the news; what?s real, what?s hype -- from our vantage point in tech.

This week, we do a 20-ish minute deep-dive on CRISPR, to tease apart the FUD from the facts given a bunch of recent news (not research!) around the gene-editing platform. The news implications range from policy to practice:

At the end of July, one of the first laws to directly regulate CRISPR was signed in the state of California by Governor Gavin Newsom, making it illegal for "gene therapy" kits to be sold, unless they have a clear warning label that the kit is "not for self-administration? -- this policy may affect future "biohacking"... but also, such kits don't really exist yet!At the end of August, the Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM, an TKTK) released a Therapeutic Developers? Statement of Principles for the use of gene editing in therapeutic applications -- endorsed by 13 of the most active companies in the field -- while it supports somatic cell editing, it also asserts that germline gene editing "is currently inappropriate in human clinical settings".The above news is also relevant given news of/ the scandal from earlier this year (first revealed by MIT Technology Review) around "CRISPR babies" with germline edits born in China;Meanwhile, clinical trials for CRISPR are coming of age, with the first publicly identified CRISPR patient (treating sickle cell disease) and the first CRISPR study inside the body (for LCA, the most common cause of inherited childhood blindness); how do these show pacing and containment of risks (somatic cell, monogenetic phenotypes, ex vivo, etc.)?

Finally, how does all this news affect innovation in gene therapies and other applications? When it comes to engineering the genome -- including tech challenges and startup opportunities -- what might we  borrow from the history of innovation here? If CRISPR is not a single tool or set of proteins but a platform, what becomes possible? General partner Jorge Conde and partner Andy Tran, both of the a16z bio team, share their thoughts on all this and more with host Sonal Chokshi in this episode of 16 Minutes.

2019-10-08
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Amazon Healthcare, Oculus & VR/AR, Google Quantum Supremacy? (#10)

Our news podcast, 16 Minutes -- where we quickly cover the top headlines of the week, the a16z way (why are these topics in the news; what's real, what's hype from our vantage point of tech trends) -- is now only available as its own show feed, separately from the main a16z Podcast... so be sure to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts if you want our weekly news & tech take!

This is the tenth episode of the show, and this week we cover a variety of topics with the following a16z experts:

Amazon Care healthcare news this week that they're now providing a virtual medical clinic for employees, initially in Seattle, using telemedicine and in-home visits; what does their delivering healthcare actually mean for both incumbents and startups... and the future of medicine? -- with Julie Yoo and Jorge CondeOculus Connect 6, Facebook's annual developer event, where there were a number of announcements about devices, content, and more that could be key to the evolution of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) -- with Chris DixonGoogle quantum supremacy claim, as shared in a paper with/via NASA; what's fact, what's fiction about it; what does it actually mean (or not mean) for cryptography and other applications; and where are we, really, in quantum computing? -- with Vijay Pande

...hosted by Sonal Chokshi.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-09-30
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All the Recent Phone Hacks (#9)

This is episode #9 of our news show, 16 Minutes, where we quickly cover recent headlines of the week, the a16z way -- why they?re in the news; why they matter from our vantage point in tech -- and share our experts? views on the trends involved.

This week we do a short but deep dive to tease apart the FUD from the facts on all the phone hacks of late (also, arguably, one of the worst years on record for certain device manufacturers) -- given the following news:

Just this week, the FBI?s Cyber Division released a notification to private industry on ?Cyber Criminals Use Social Engineering and Technical Attacks to Circumvent Multi-Factor Authentication?;Last week, a telecom security firm reported a vulnerability called ?Simjacker? where SMS containing spyware-like code "takes over" a phone's SIM card in order to retrieve and perform sensitive commands, regardless of platform or device;Over the past month, Google and Apple have been going back and forth over a post the former released, ?A very deep dive into iOS Exploit chains found in the wild?, where a small collection of hacked websites were using iPhone zero-day vulnerabilities to target China's Uyghur Muslim community (though Google is not the one who revealed the specific websites, Apple did confirm it in their response a week later) -- what do we make of this exchange; of the fact that zero-day hacks are now more expensive on Android than on Apple; and of Apple's ethos when it comes to a third-party ecosystem for security?

Finally, how should we think about phone authentication overall when it comes to security, and what can we do to secure ourselves? Our a16z experts -- general partner Martin Casado and former chief security officer/ operating partner for security Joel de la Garza -- share their thoughts on all this and more with host Sonal Chokshi, in this episode of 16 Minutes.

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The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at a16z.com/investments.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-09-23
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Apple Camera, Services; Wearables - Where are We (#8)

This is episode #8 of our news show, 16 Minutes, where we quickly cover recent headlines of the week, the a16z way -- why they're in the news; why they matter from our vantage point in tech -- and share our experts' views on these trends.

This week we cover, with the following a16z experts:

Apple's latest event announcing new products and services across mobile, TV, and gaming; where is (and isn't) innovation happening, and what's next -- with a16z's Benedict Evans;wearables and health trackers such as Fitbit supplying services to the government of Singapore, and what it means for the hype vs. reality of the current trends of wearables (and "the quantified self"); going beyond counting steps to clinical applications and detecting comorbid conditions; strong vs. weak technologies and how to pay beyond fee-for-service to fee-for-value; and where does this all fit in a sensor-ified future? -- with a16z bio general partner Vijay Pande;

...hosted by Sonal Chokshi.

 

The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-09-16
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Apple Card, BEC Scams Federal Indictment (#7)

This is episode #7 of our news show, 16 Minutes, where we quickly cover recent headlines of the week, the a16z way -- why they're in the news; why they matter from our vantage point in tech -- and share our experts' views on these trends.

This week we cover, with the following a16z experts:

Apple releasing a credit card, and what it means beyond the card features itself, what it means for consumer credit (and recession risks), and the financial ecosystem overall -- with new a16z fintech general partner Anish Acharya; BEC frauds and scams indictment and the FBI bringing a massive federal grand jury indictment, one of the biggest of its kind, and what it means and how to prevent this type of cyber fraud -- with a16z operating partner for security Joel de la Garza;

...hosted by Sonal Chokshi.

The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (?a16z?) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.

*This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at https://a16z.com/investments/.

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see https://a16z.com/disclosures for additional important information.

2019-08-25
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