Financial Independence Strategies13 Dec 2020
A while ago, I tweeted that “it’s essentially always cheaper to rent in urban areas than it is to buy property.” I believe this is conventional wisdom called the Rule of 16, where you divide the price of a house by the yearly rent of a similar apartment. If the ratio is over 16, it’s “better” to rent in that area than it is to buy and vice versa. I’m not sure where that rule came from and I’ll try to derive it later, but I decided to check this assumption by modeling it.
DuPont Analysis on CDNs8 Nov 2020
The only financial skill I have that I haven’t seen other people do better than me is DuPont analysis. DuPont analysis tries to find the drivers of a company’s Return on Equity by factoring it into three parts:
- Profitability as measured by Net Profit Margin, or how much profit a company is able to keep from its revenue.
- Efficiency as measured by Asset Turnover, or how much revenue a company is able to produce from its assets.
- Financial Leverage which is how much the company relies on debt as a funding source.
Stifling Innovation24 Oct 2020
The natural question that comes up when thinking about disruptive innovation is: How can incumbent companies successfully navigate the transition to a disruptive technology?
The answer I’m familiar with is basically that managers invest in the new technology, and let the old and new compete. This acknowledges the risk that the new technology might fail, and also captures the upside if it succeeds. As the previous company/department begins to decline, the other starts growing just as quickly and you already have an ownership stake in it.
Better Office Ideas15 Oct 2020
I thought it would be fun to write down my thoughts on how offices could be setup better for long-term post-COVID reopening.
Serverless3 Oct 2020
Serverless is powerful because:
It’s often cheaper than running the same application on a VPS. Right now, this may be mostly because it’s under-priced. But it does actually require fewer physical resources, since applications scale on-demand and many applications can share the same physical host more efficiently.
Possibly also falling under “cheaper,” it has a lower operational burden. Developers simply upload their code and the cloud provider handles process management and scaling.
Applications that run on serverless platforms are faster because they’re always hosted near the end-user.
All except 3 are proposed benefits of sufficiently developed crypto. I guess a network that lets you get 3d-printed gun designs is also one, though.
End-to-End Encryption10 Sep 2020
E2E encryption possibly fits into the model for disruptive technology:
- It’s disproportionately valued by a small set of people.
- Established companies are unable to effectively deploy it because they either consider plaintext data valuable, or they’ve built a product which is technically unable to be offered in an end-to-end encrypted fashion.
However, it’s not clear that sufficiently developed E2E encryption is able to provide the same service better than an unencrypted alternative would be able to.
Wikipedia, part 29 Sep 2020
Disruptive innovation requires the creation of a new disruptive technology. So if Wikipedia is an example of disruptive innovation, what technology did they create? Like most people, I hear “new technology” and my mind naturally starts looking for machinery and gears combining to accomplish something that nobody thought was possible before. But that’s not here: Wikipedia is widely considered technically unremarkable. Instead, what stands out to me about Wikipedia and makes me think “that shouldn’t work” is anonymous contribution.
Cloudflare’s Browser5 Sep 2020
Alternate Title: Cloudflare’s Plan for World Domination (Not Really (Maybe))
Cloudflare’s browser product will mark the beginning of a two-sided network. That is, we’ll have answers to the two following questions:
Why Tumblr?4 Sep 2020
Why do I feel like it’s easier to write on Tumblr than on any kind of self-hosted blog?
- Tumblr has no friction between deciding to write something and starting to write.
- It has a WYSIWYG editor that’s fun to use.
- I can queue posts for later.
- It’s social. There’s the possibility of my content getting seen and interacted with by other people.
- In turn, I could find other people that I like and follow them and see their posts on here.