Discover more from Uncorrelated Interests
Prime Cuts #7
Idiosyncrasy masquerading as a newsletter.
Welcome to Prime Cuts, a curated weekly collection of the most interesting content for your Reading, Watching, or Listening playlists.
I’m spending a ton of time exploring various models of innovation and revenue generation these days to supplement our thinking at the Studio, and this is a read that I had to return to. Using Danny Meyer’s restaurant group as the foundation, the author clearly demonstrates how the organizational and operational structures of the business itself often determine both what revenue model can be chosen by the business and how well it can optimally deliver on this model. Many, many applications into technology even though restaurants are in many ways orthogonal to the tech business model.
If you’re curious about how to push the envelope on startup creation, you could do worse than studying eFounders. They’ve built an absolute behemoth in a decade, with 30 startups launched and nearly $5B in enterprise value created (at least before the Great Markdown period in which we currently reside). This annual letter early in their journey does a nice job exploring how, as a startup studio, they are/were a startup themselves, which adds to the complexity.
A quick read exploring the idea of volume as an often necessary component of creativity. The most creative people in history have tended to be the most prolific, which necessarily means having the greatest volume of BAD work to accompany the transcendent. This feels counterintuitive - masters in their craft certainly can’t have bad work, can they? In reality, most of our ideas are not great, and a key part of creativity is productivity, which allows the greats (and us) to not get stuck on the bad ideas - just keep pushing them out into the world, and outside of yourself, until the good ones emerge.
Animation is definitely having a moment, and much of that can certainly be traced back to Across the Spider-Verse’s massive cultural success built on top of some extreme (and massively fulfilling) artistic chances. Nimona is not the best animated movie I’ve seen this year (Spider-Verse part 2 obviously takes that spot), nor is it the most original. Sampling very obviously from Spider-Verse and other properties like the amazing animated series Arcane (also Netflix), this one has a lot of gags that don’t always land. But the full commitment to a story fully focused on belonging and inner turmoil within the LGBTQ community, wrapped within an animated/genre rollick, takes chutzpah, and it largely works.
I was recently turned on to the Perkins Brothers YouTube channel by my own brother, and as everyone who knows me will tell you, I have not a lick of acumen nor interest in building/fixes houses myself. But watching others build? from scratch? with a tremendously fun and charismatic cast of characters? This has become my late night wind down go-to.
I’ll admit that I have been a bit of a Reid Hoffman skeptic, primarily because the “blitzscaling” concept that he popularized to provide a blueprint to massively scaling tech companies is instead a post-hoc rationalization of survivorship bias. That said, this conversation is fantastic! The combination of Hoffman’s boyish optimism and deep-rooted knowledge in the field with Tyler Cowen’s typical pointed pragmatism yields a wholly rewarding discussion about the (not always positive) AI futures.