Dan Romero

January 2020 links

Here’s a mostly comprehensive list of the links I found interesting in January 2020.

Technology, Startups, Progress

Inside-out vs. outside-in technologies from Chris Dixon. Alex Danco on social capital in Silicon Valley. Paul Graham essays on noobs and haters. Post about underutilized fixed assets from Kevin Kwok. Julian Lehr on newsletters, Telegram and blogs; a list of Telegram blogs. Nintil’s 13,000+ word Longevity FAQ (and the making of it). Florent Crivello wrote about how Apple sells software at hardware prices. How to start angel investing from Julia DeWahl. Dan Wang’s annual letter. The best tweets in 2019 from Alexey Guzey.

A claim that SpaceX’s Starlink is now the largest satellite constellation in orbit. Why this matters; another viewpoint. Bonus: track Starlink satellites.

Idea for a recruiting software startup from Russ d’Sa (from 2008!). A RescueTime 2.0 idea. Enterprise product ideas.

A list of companies that “got big slow” from Balaji. First Round Capital says the time between 1st contact and term sheet has decreased by an order of magnitude sine 2004. Tony Fadell sent a development timeline for the original iPod to Patrick Collison (and a historical iPod sales chart). Also Apple: rebuilding the iOS phone app from Sean Rose.

Florent Crivello’s thread on progress in atoms. The US as a “developing nation” paired with a Dan Wang thread. Prop 13 commentary and the upcoming ballot measure to exclude commercial property from Prop 13.

A good take on a dumb article about an irrelevant Silicon Valley micro-trend. A continuous glucose monitoring thread. A cogent Casper S-1 take. Instant Pot facts. A product management thread. The most valuable startup tweet of all time?


Michael Nielsen thread on personal behavior in response to climate change and a followup tweetstorm. Ryan Orbuch’s Negative Emissions Reading List. Solar prices dropping, electrical grid power loss and Tesla’s impact on battery prices. Microsoft going carbon neutral. Lastly, Churchill on nuclear power in 1933(!).

Old decade, new decade

SSC did a personal review of the 2010s. What the 2004 American intelligence community thought 2020 would be like; a 2010s prediction thread on Hacker News.

As for 2020 predictions, three that were a bit more under-the-radar: Jeff Lonsdale’s 2020 predictions, Zach Perret’s fintech predictions, and Mike Maples, Jr. thread of potential macro technology trends for the 2020s.


PoolTogether is an Ethereum-based “no-loss, audited savings game”, i.e. a lottery where you don’t lose your principal (or a savings account that pays out interest in a very lumpy manner). Zero knowledge proofs non-financial use case thread. Bitcoin-backed lending thread. (Crypto lending (Bitfinex) and leverage (BitMEX, MakerDAO) markets are under-appreciated phenomena by most non-crypto people in tech.) Jesse Walden on progressive decentralization for crypto companies (trend worth watching). The Pseudonymous Economy presentation from Balaji.


Suggestions for getting downloaded PDFs from Mac to an iOS device. Email to Kindle and Dropbox folder set to “offline” are the most straightforward.

For Twitter: remove non-tweet junk, search minimum retweets and just who you follow, and you should probably follow more people. Is Michael Nielsen the ideal Twitter user? Bonus: my ideal Twitter client.

Tips for reducing stress. Unconventional strategies for practicing Spanish. An algorithmic solution to insomnia. Why SQL is underrated. A thread on tools for remote teams. And how to write a clean email and a good investor update.


Pre-order Ben Cohen’s new book on the hot hand phenomenon. Devon Zuegel’s Against the Grain review (and SSC’s review from earlier last year). Will blog clubs be a thing? Balaji’s interesting scientific websites thread.

Lots o’ maps: map of Africa, The Histomap and an HTTP request map.

Claims: 2.5% of remittances between US and Mexico happening over crypto rails and there are fewer natural disaster deaths.

Josh Barro on meticulous vacation planning (not for me) and Dustin Curtis’ interesting hotel experiences thread.

Mason Hartman on what’s gone wrong with schooling, a USSR economy thread. A good Boris Johnson profile. Zeihan’s Reddit AMA. The roaring 1620s. Origins of Vietnamese nail salons. And last but not least, Lil Nas X calling his shot in January 2019!

First published on February 4, 2020