Thinks 442

WSJ reviewing a book “The Founders” by Jimmy Soni: “PayPal has taken on a mythical status not merely because of its success but also because of what its founders have become. The marquee names include Mr. Thiel, Elon Musk, Reid Hoffman, Chad Hurley, Max Levchin and David Sacks—a kind of founding generation for our high-tech world. Their post-PayPal ventures include investing in, or launching, transformative companies, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Palantir, Yelp, YouTube and Tesla. Other pre-IPO staff members, if less-known, are scattered through top technology companies and investment firms. “PayPal’s alumni have built, funded, or counseled nearly every Silicon Valley company of consequence for the last two decades,” Mr. Soni writes. “As a group, they constitute one of the most powerful and successful networks ever created.” He notes that the group has been branded the PayPal “mafia” but quotes Mr. Sacks, now a venture capitalist, arguing for “diaspora” instead: “We’re more like the Jews than, like, the Sicilians.””

David Perell: “While watching Dune…I was struck by this line: “A great man doesn’t seek to lead. He’s called to it. And he answers.” I love that word: calling. If you’ve ever been called to something, you’ll know that it’s a feeling of surrender, where you start serving a mission instead of yourself. As you do, you open up the potential for beauty. We shouldn’t be surprised that the Greek word for beauty (“kalon”) is related to the word for calling (“kalein”). Reflecting on their similarities, the poet John O’Donahue says that’s because the presence of beauty is not a neutral thing — it calls you. When you hear the echoes of that calling, you rise into leadership.”

Thomas McKinlay: “Rounded prices (e.g. $200) are better for hedonic products (e.g. decorative candle), non-rounded prices (e.g. $217) are better for utilitarian products (e.g. insect-repellent candle).”


Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.