Episodes

  • Innovation in the data center has been constrained by the traditional model of suppliers providing fixed-function chips that limit how much the biggest data center operators can differentiate. But programmable chips have emerged that allow these companies to not only increase performance, but innovate throughout the pipeline, from operating system to networking interface to user application.

    This is a major trend among "hyperscalers," which are some of the world’s most well known companies running massive data centers with tens of thousands of servers. We’re talking about companies like Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Apple, Alibaba, Tencent.

    To talk about the trends in data centers and how software may be “eating the world of the data center,” we talked this summer to two experts. Martin Casado is an a16z general partner focused on enterprise investing. Before that he was a pioneer in the software-defined networking movement and the cofounder of Nicira, which was acquired by VMWare. (Martin has written frequently on infrastructure and data-center issues and has appeared on many a16z podcasts on these topics.)

    He’s joined by Nick McKeown, a Stanford professor of computer science who has founded multiple companies (and was Martin’s cofounder at Nicira) and has worked with hyperscalers to innovate within their data centers. After this podcast was recorded, Nick was appointed Senior Vice President and General Manager of a new Intel organization, the Network and Edge Group.

    We begin with Nick, talking about the sheer scale of data-center traffic.

  • What are network effects? [1:32]How do you cold start and get your first users? [2:33]Atomic networks and why minimum viable community is more important than minimum viable product [6:36]How do you curate your network and set norms? [8:42]Faking users: good idea, bad idea? [13:13]What is flintstoning? [14:26]How does the relationship to creators change as you scale? [17:07]Building for the professional creator class [22:52]How is web3 changing incentives? [25:12]

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  • Given all the activity and interest recently around crypto and web3, as well as in upcoming holidays and art events, we’re re-running our episode all about NFTs (from March 2021) -- where we covered everything you need or want to know about NFTs. You can also find a curated list of resources to learn all about NFTs at future.com/nftcanon. That list, and this episode, has something for everyone -- from artists and creators and other builders to big companies and institutions or just anyone seeking to understand or even explain to others NFTs.

    Here, we’ve cut through the noise around NFTs to share the signal, covering everything from:

    what NFTs are and the underlying crypto big picture, before we dig into specifically what forms they take;common myths and misconceptions -- from confusing overlaps with other concepts to addressing commentary like it’s “just a JPG” or that it’s just hypeto the question of energy use, also covering briefly how NFTs workproviding a quick overview of the players/ ecosystemand throughout, covering various applications too.

    Joining host Sonal Chokshi are Jesse Walden, now of Variant Fund, and formerly co-founder of Mediachain Labs, which was acquired by Spotify; and Linda Xie, now of Scalar Capital, and formerly an early product manager at Coinbase. As a reminder, NONE of the following should be taken as investment advice, for more important information please see a16z.com/disclosures.

    [If you’re also interested in DAOs (which we touch on briefly in this episode), we just recently published a list of readings -- in the vein of our famous crypto canon resource, then NFT canon, and now DAO canon -- all about DAOs. It’s for anyone seeking to understand, build, and otherwise get involved with these “decentralized autonomous organizations” -- which represent the future of community, coordination, work, and much more… so we’ve curated resources on this list for people at different levels of interest, from dipping one’s toes in to going deep. You can find that at future.com/daocanon.]

    This episode was originally released in March 2021: https://future.a16z.com/podcasts/nfts-explainer/

  • In today's episode we’re talking about an emerging model of gaming called play to earn, in which players can make actual money based on how much time and effort they put into a game. Play to earn is also part of broader trends — the changing relationship between players and platforms, new incentives for participants in blockchain-based networks, and the new internet era that is coming to be known as a web3.

    The top play-to-earn game is called Axie Infinity, operated by a Vietnam-based company called Sky Mavis. Players of the game acquire unique digital pets called Axies, and battle other teams of Axies. These NFT Axies can be created and sold using the game’s in-game currency, SLP, which can be traded for traditional currency.

    Think of it as Pokemon on the blockchain, with a social network built-in, and an actual economy, and even companies built around the game that help players onboard and loan them money to get started playing. The game has made more than $3 billion in total sales since launching in March 2018, with much of its early growth in the Philippines.

    (As a reminder, none of the following should be taken as investment advice, please see a16z.com/disclosures for more important information.)

    Our guests today are Jeff Zirlin, the cofounder of Sky Mavis; Gabby Dizon, the cofounder of Yield Guild Games, a play to earn gaming guild that gives players the resources to start playing; and a16z crypto general partner Arianna Simpson.

    They talk to a16z's Zoran Basich about the tech trends that enabled the emergence of play to earn, why and where it caught on first, and the role of community, as well as the challenges, which include onboarding and scalability, and the economic sustainability of this model. The panel also discusses what the play-to-earn movement say about the future of work.

  • Today’s episode is all about crypto security — that is, the new mindsets and the new strategies for storing crypto assets safely while also allowing holders control and access.

    As a reminder, none of the following should be taken as investment advice, please see a16z.com/disclosures for more important information.

    We’ve covered security trends more broadly a ton in our content, which you can find at a16z.com/security, as well as crypto-related trends including NFTs, and the creator and ownership economies; you can find all of that at a16z.com/nfts

    But as more people enter crypto lately — thanks to the boom in NFTs, decentralized finance, and much more — we share specific best practices and options for securing crypto as well as discussing how it all fits this next evolution of the internet: web3.

    Our expert today is a16z crypto data scientist Eddy Lazzarin, who joins host Zoran Basich to cover practical approaches ranging from passwords to crypto wallets and what users can do; the evolution of crypto briefly; and the big picture mindset shifts involved here as well.

    We quickly begin with the practical shift crypto security represents compared to how people interact with traditional financial institutions, and then we go into the big picture trends in security when it comes to abstraction and usability.

  • There are lots of challenges in being public while trying to innovate, and limits to being a private company as well; but it's rare to see a company go public then private then back to public again. As is the case with Dell Technologies, one of the largest tech companies -- which went private 2012-2013 and then also pulled off one of the most epic mergers of all time with Dell + EMC + VMWare 2015-2016 (and which we wrote about here at the time).

    Is there a method to the madness? How does one not just start, but keep, and transform, their company and business? Especially as it adapts to broader, underlying tech platform shifts. Michael Dell shares all this in his upcoming new book, Play Nice to Win: A CEO's Journey from Founder to Leader... he also, tellingly, may be one of the longest-standing founder-CEOs (37 years so far).

    Because this is really a story about innovation, who decides, who judges, who does it, and where: In the markets, in public, in private; in the both the big picture and the inner detailed workings of a business beyond "cells in a spreadsheet"; and even in fighting -- or harnessing! -- narratives, whether it's the demise-of-PC or cloud wars 1.0 /2.0... And where trends like the cost paradox of cloud, and "end of cloud" edge computing, among others like AI & ML, also come in. In this special book-launch episode of the a16z Podcast with Marc Andreessen, Martin Casado, and Sonal Chokshi debate the Cloud Wars to the Company Wars (along with some behind-scenes stories and even some star wars) with Michael Dell... and whether you can really play nice to win.

    image: Dell EMC World 2016/ © Dell Inc.

    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.

  • There's no question technology played a huge role in the recent/current pandemic, including especially in the plug-and-play engineering and incredibly fast development behind the mRNA vaccines... But is there an even bigger role for the private sector, not just government, to play (and partner) when it comes to key infrastructure for future such emergencies, and even beyond?

    Especially given how faulty the translation of institutional science to policy and public health measures turned out to be -- for instance, with "6 feet" of social distancing, or with fomite (vs. aerosol) transmission of COVID. And why are we still talking about the same, not specific, vaccine booster for the Delta variant? What can we learn about real-world evidence, other clinical trial approaches, and progressive (vs. binary) EUA approvals when it comes to public health emergencies? Are capabilities like genomic surveillance and mapping strains -- which require layers of technology, real time -- sitting in the right places?

    In this special book-launch episode of the a16z Podcast, former FDA commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb -- author of the upcoming new book, Uncontrolled Spread: Why COVID-19 Crushed Us, and How We Can Defeat the Next Pandemic -- shares insights on the above, and revealing stories from behind the scenes. Do we need a new entity to manage public health through a national security lens, and is the government capable? Gottlieb debates this and other probing questions from a16z co-founder Marc Andreessen (who famously wrote "It's time to build"); a16z bio general partner Vineeta Agarwala MD, Phd (who has spoken about the trials of clinical trials, practiced medicine during the pandemic, and more); and founding a16z bio general partner Vijay Pande PhD (who, among other things, founded the distributed computing project Folding@Home which pivoted to COVID proteins).

    One thing's for sure -- with this COVID crisis, we're at an inflection point between old and new technology -- whether it's in how we make vaccines, or how we apply the fields of synthetic biology and genetic epidemiology in public health response. So now's the time to look both backward, and forward, to really change things...

  • There's been a false dichotomy in technology and management lore over the past decade, between "brain" and "brawn", digital and physical, independence and interdependence, software culture versus industrial culture… or so observes Stanford Graduate School of Business lecturer, former big-company executive, and startup founder Robert Siegel in his new book, The Brains and Brawn Company: How leading organizations blend the best of digital and physical.

    Whether you're an early startup or a Fortune 500 company, we live in an increasingly complex world -- which means embracing digitization is not enough. But logistics, supply chains, and infrastructure are messy, ugly, and hard. So today's leaders have to think completely differently, in terms of ecosystems; and they're often in the position of having to influence but not have control. So when and how do they assert power in an ecosystem? When do they try to shape it? When do they sit back? What to do if their channel partner suddenly changes? When do you want to stay frenemies and when do you wanna be enemies? These are just some of the hard questions companies today have to wrestle with... All boiling down to when and where to partner, when to go it alone?

    So in this hallway-style discussion among Siegel and fellow Stanford b-school lecturers Jeffrey Immelt (former CEO of GE) and a16z general partner Jeff Jordan -- in conversation with host Sonal Chokshi -- the group wrestles with these questions, spinning through several different company examples such as Instacart and Stripe to Apple and Android/Google to Disney, Peloton, and others. But we talk too much about the outliers; we need to also talk more about the tools, and mindsets, that leaders of all kinds -- not just the once-in-a-generation leaders! -- can use. After all, argues Siegel, "Incumbents are not doomed and disruptors are not ordained."

    The views expressed here are those of the 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.

  • Recently, a16z and the Stanford Center for Blockchain Research hosted the NFT Virtual Summit, which brought together leading thinkers and builders on the topic of NFTs, or non-fungible tokens — these tokens are enabling new creator and ownership economies to emerge. We’ve covered NFTs in other podcasts and articles, including a curated list of reading resources, and you can watch all the videos from the summit.

    Today we’re sharing one of the discussions from that virtual summit (all of which were also published on our a16z Live feed) — this episode features General Partner Katie Haun chatting with Devin Finzer, cofounder of NFT marketplace OpenSea, on the topic of NFT “Use Cases, Today, and Tomorrow” — they cover the "tokenization of everything."

    ###

    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.

  • Playing out against the backdrop of a global pandemic (including recent massive surges in regions around the world) is the news that came out a week ago that a candidate "malaria vaccine becomes first to achieve WHO-specified 75% efficacy goal”. While the findings are still in preprint with The Lancet, the resulting buzz and phrases quoted included everything from “unprecedented”, “groundbreaking work”, and “very exciting” to “high expectations”, “highly effective”, and “a hugely significant extra weapon”... A "weapon" in the war against malaria that is -- a disease that is estimated to cause over 400,000 deaths each year globally, and predominantly in children under the age of five.

    So in this special 2x explainer episode of 16 Minutes (also running on the a16z Podcast), we -- Rajeev Venkayya of Takeda Pharmaceuticals, a16z bio general partner Jorge Conde, and Sonal Chokshi -- dig into what's hype/ what's real about this news, beyond the headlines and beyond the buzz. What does the data tell us, what does the current study phase mean, and what's left to get to widespread, real-world use? How does this candidate vaccine (R21 from Jenner Institute/ Oxford University) compare to the other malaria vaccine (RTS,S from GlaxoSmithKline)? How do, and don't, advances in and around COVID vaccines play here? And why has it been so hard to develop vaccines for this particular disease?

    Because we also cover (as is the premise of the show) where we are on the long arc of innovation... and this is an innovation story that's been nearly a century in the making.

  • This is a special episode of the a16z podcast — it's an audio history, told through the voices of the a16z crypto team, about what crypto is, how it really works, and why it matters. This "innovation overview" is meant as a resource, and it features hallway-style conversations with the a16z team as well as outside experts.

    In brief segments, we’ll take you from the ground up — from the basics, to the most current developments, and beyond that to a look at what we might see in the future.

    Here are the topics and voices you'll hear:

    The Beginning

    Introduction — Zoran Basich, a16z crypto editorBefore bitcoin: previous attempts to create digital money, 1:45 — Dan Boneh, computer science professor at Stanford and a16 advisor The core innovations of Satoshi’s white paper, 3:36 — Dan Boneh Proof of work, 5:36 — Alex Pruden, chief strategy officer at Aleo Systems and former a16z crypto partner Mining and why it’s important, 7:10 — Alex Pruden The history of mining, 8:20 — Alex Pruden Value in monetary systems, or why bitcoin is worth anything, 9:53 — Arianna Simpson, a16z crypto partner Bitcoin as store of value, 11:30 — Arianna Simpson Security in crypto, 12:45 — Alex Pruden

    Expansion

    Why is it called a blockchain? 14:00 — Eddy Lazzarin, a16z data scientist Why the blockchain matters and what you can do with it, 15:09 — Chris Dixon, a16z general partner Beyond bitcoin, 17:01 — Eddy Lazzarin Ethereum as logical extension of open source, 17:36 — Eddy Lazzarin Tokens: What are they? 19:04 — Eddy Lazzarin Tokens and the functions they serve, 19:53 — Scott Kupor, a16z managing partnerTokens and the ownership economy, 21:19 — Jesse Walden, Variant Fund founder, former a16z partner, and Mediachain founder What tokens enable for creators, 22:18 — Ali Yahya, a16z general partner

    Right Now

    What DeFi means, 23:58 — Eddy Lazzarin Yield farming: What is it? 25:16 — Eddy Lazzarin NFTs: What they are and why they matter, 27:15 — Linda Xie, Scalar Capital managing director, and Jesse Walden Developer ecosystems, crypto, and composability, 30:17 — Jesse Walden Decentralized networks, value capture, and what it means for builders, 33:05 — Ali Yahya

    The Future

    The big picture, web3, and DAOs, 35:38 — Chris Dixon

    For more crypto resources, please see our Crypto Startup School page, our documentary about the program, and our NFT Canon.

    ###

    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.

  • It's clear from the growth of Patreon, Substack, TikTok, Clubhouse and many more that the power of the Creator Economy continues to build. These platforms share one thing in common: They all enable independent creators to monetize their skills and products like never before. It's a trend that’s become increasingly relevant as the demand for virtual work grows.


    In this episode, first published a year ago, Patreon cofounder Sam Yam, Atelier Ventures' Li Jin (formerly a16z), and host Lauren Murrow discuss monetizing community, why creators today are effectively making more money off fewer fans, and what all of this means for the future of work.

    The discussion is based on The Passion Economy and the Future of Work, a popular essay that first ran on a16z.com in October 2019. Check out that post and more creator content at: a16z.com/creatoreconomy.

  • In today’s episode of the a16z Podcast, we’re talking about the Creator Economy, and how NFTs (but not just NFTS!) are making it possible for artists, musicians, videogamers, game developers, and writers to create entirely new markets to make money from their work and engage with their fans.

    Part of this emerging picture is social tokens, which share a crypto foundation with NFTs, but unlike NFTs (which are non-fungible tokens, in which each token is unique), social tokens are typically fungible, meaning each token has the same value. (Listen to our explainer episode "All About NFTs" with Sonal Choksi, Jesse Walden, and Linda Xie, or see our curated NFT Canon for much more info on NFTs!)

    This hallway-style chat features a16z General Partner and crypto investor Chris Dixon, talking with Kevin Chou, who founded Kabam, and is the founder of Rally, an open network on Ethereum where creators can launch social tokens; and Jesse Walden, the founder of MediaChain, a music rights protocol that was acquired by Spotify; he’s now the founder of crypto venture fund Variant.

    They’ll talk about how musicians, artists, and writers can think about NFTs and social tokens as well, and how those different types of assets can interact to create models that haven’t existed before.

    But Chris starts off the discussion by talking about the emergence of crypto tokens, and a look at how videogames and gamers were early to the idea of community engagement and digital assets, and how that model is beginning to spread outward.

  • This episode is all about NFTs. It seems like nothing has caught on and spread into mainstream interest like NFTs, where one hears everything from "I've never seen anything like this before" to "is this like ICOs all over again" to "it's just a jpg I don't get it" to "but what about the energy use!"

    So, in this special deep-dive episode from the a16z Podcast network, we break down everything you need or want to know about NFTs -- while cutting through the noise for what’s hype/ what’s real, as well as where are on the long arc (and sometimes seemingly sudden tipping point!) of innovation (apparently, Google trends data showed that interest in NFTs recently surpassed interest in cryptocurrency). Editor in chief Sonal Chokshi interviews friends of a16z crypto Linda Xie, co-founder of Scalar Capital and former Product Manager at Coinbase; and Jesse Walden, founder at Variant Fund and former co-founder of Mediachain Labs (which was acquired by Spotify, where he was then an R&D lead).

    Posted on both the a16z Podcast show and 16 Minutes -- as one of our "2-3x explainer episodes" of topics that keep coming up over and over again in the news (past such episodes have covered everything from Section 230 and Tiktok to GPT-3 and the opioid crisis) -- this episode covers:

    what NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are -- as well as the properties of crypto that enable them, just to set some big-picture context;what forms they take, and what is and ISN’T an NFT -- including where “social tokens” and the creator economy do and don’t come in;common myths and misconceptions -- from ‘just a jpg’ to the frequent question of energy use & NFTs;how they work -- as well as the broader ecosystem around NFTs, and different players;various applications, now and next -- touching briefly on how to think about NFTs, whether you’re an artist/ creator, developer, or institution.

    ...This episode is for everyone!

    transcript available at: https://a16z.com/2021/03/27/nfts-explainer-faqs-hype-reality-innovation-crypto-creator-economy

    image: Mona Lisa/ Creative Commons 4.0; changes made by Greg Truesdell per Sonal Chokshi, who dubbed it "The First 500 Years" as a nod to Beeple's "The First 5000 Days"

    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.

  • In the tech world, marketplaces are a hot topic. That term—marketplace—encompasses a huge swath of services we use every day, from grocery delivery to online shopping to remote learning. How have marketplace dynamics changed since pre-pandemic, and what COVID-propelled consumer behaviors will persist into 2021 and beyond?

    In this episode, we discuss the most promising marketplace companies and categories on the rise, based on data from the Marketplace 100, a ranking of the largest and fastest-growing consumer-facing marketplace startups and private companies.

    The report provides rich fodder for looking ahead at the future of marketplaces: Which companies are on a tear and which are locked in close competition? Which marketplace categories are poised for growth, and which may make a comeback? Host Lauren Murrow is joined by a16z consumer team partners Connie Chan, D’Arcy Coolican, Jeff Jordan, and Sriram Krishnan.

  • This podcast -- which was recorded at the Computer History Museum in a live event, before the pandemic (first published in December 2019) is all about how companies create culture: A lot's changed... and a lot hasn't.

    a16z editor in chief Sonal Chokshi interviews a16z co-founder Ben Horowitz -- author of the book What You Do Is Who You Are -- on whether companies and people can change; how the very thing that is your strength can also be your weakness; how startups evolve from pirates to the navy; actions vs words and values; and more. The discussion also covers common tropes that often come up in Silicon Valley folklore -- whether it’s “fake it til you make it” and the “reality distortion fields” of visionaries… vs. liars.

    Drawing on historical themes and examples from a thousand years ago to today -- spanning empires, wars, revolutions, hip-hop, and prisons -- the discussion covers key themes and nuances, as well as practical advice, on creating company culture. Please note -- especially if you’re listening on smart speakers at home with children or with kids in a car -- that the discussion that follows includes various mentions of violence. 100% of the proceeds of the book go to anti-recidivism as well as towards helping Haiti.

    Nick Quah, writer and publisher of Hot Pod (also at Vulture) joins a16z general partner Connie Chan -- and editor in chief (and showrunner of the a16z Podcast) Sonal Chokshi -- to talk about all this and more in this hallway-style jam.

  • Boss Talk is a weekly live show on Clubhouse, where a16z cofounder Ben Horowitz and Databricks CEO Ali Ghodsi discuss CEO stuff, leadership stuff, management stuff… you know, boss stuff. Here we share the second installment; in it, they explain Conway’s Law and shipping your org chart; how to transition from a boss to a boss of bosses; and their predictions for Silicon Valley post-pandemic.

    For more episodes of Boss Talk and other conversations from a16z, check out our separate feed, a16z Live.

  • In just the last couple years, ransomware has grown into a multibillion dollar industry. It has evolved from taking systems and servers hostage to stealing data, and it has proven capable of shutting down global organizations. In recent months, ransomware groups directly shut down Kia Motors North American IT systems; indirectly may have contributed to the death of a patient due to hospital ransomware; and allegedly stole sensitive files from a law firm whose clients include former President Trump.

    In this explainer episode, Tom Hofmann, the SVP of Intelligence at Flashpoint Intel (which monitors ransomware criminal syndicates and assists organizations with prevention and response) and a16z security operating partner cover: how ransomware works, from the anatomy of a hack to how the groups operate; the role of nation-states, insurers, and regulators; and what to do if your stuff is taken hostage.

    For more on cybersecurity, check out our coverage of organized cybercrime and hacks and our 16 step guide to protecting your data.