Social climbing

All the tech talk of the towns and valleys and incubator initiatives are aiming to shoot out of the park. Why shouldn’t they and how can high ambition for social be at all detrimental? I’m afraid of us swinging so hard we throw our bat. We can’t just magic a new Facebook and Google (alphabetical order) that again redesigns the graph we live in? These products came from a time when expectations were low, we were talking about things other than funding, IPO’s and at least I remember the talk being on product and functionality. We were thinking about what purpose was being served? It was about why then.

After bubbles have popped, the remaining malaise is a symptom and recognition that resources have been used to worst effect. One of the careers with the biggest possible payoffs is that of a star footballer. If it works out then it works out incredibly well, the other and overwhelmingly likely alternative can be an outcome that recognizes the other choices that had been available. There is massive skew in the desirability of the outcomes but the likelihoods of these outcomes are also massively skewed. In fact I propose that the outcome likelihoods are probably more skewed than the desirability skew. However, this phenomenon whereby significantly disproportional resources are allocated towards the upper end of the desirability chart will inevitably lead to at least some disappointment. This is capitalism and although this is how we make progress it is important to at least be aware of this skew and asymmetry and at least occasionally ask how we individually and collectively allocate our resources. Getting this wrong means bubbles and we have to re-trace our steps back to where we were and take the other direction.

Peter Thiel makes the claim that to be bullish on the future means to be implicitly bullish on tech. However I have to add that to be bullish on our long term future, we have to allocate our resources wisely. Maybe, and I’m only saying perhaps, the golden future is not as the social world gossips.

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