Inspired by GitHub

I wrote a post the other day called This For That in which I suggestred that derivative ideas are challenging to execute on and equally challenging for USV to get excited about. But there are exceptions. And Github insipired ideas are one particularly interesting area to us.

I recall when Steve Martocci came to talk to us about Splice. He talked about watching musicians work and wondering why there was nothing like GitHub for them to use to store the various versions of their work. That, of course, led to Splice. And one could call Splice “GitHub for Music”. It is a lot more than that, of course, because building GitHub for Music opens up a lot of opportunities to do more for musicians. As GitHub did for programmers.

Yesterday, my partner Andy posted this link on It’s a story about a one time programmer who left software for the world of molecular biology and after a decade in the world of academic research, is leaving to do a startup which is, not surprisingly, GitHub for Life Science Protocols. You can back his Kickstarter here. I just did.

When programmers who are used to modern tools and techniques come across other industries where the tools are antiquated and the work is frustrating, they get inspired to create similar tools to make life easier. That’s happening in a lot of sectors now, not just music and life sciences.

The power of the GitHub model is not just a repository of work and version control in the cloud. It’s the public nature of much of that work. And the reputation and identity effects for those who publish some or all of their work publicly.

Tools like StackOverflow (a USV portfolio company) and GitHub allow programmers to see how other programmers have solved similar problems. I was at a hackathon up at Columbia University last weekend and one of the hacks was a development environment that automatically queried StackOverflow and GitHub as you are writing code so that you always have in front of you the answers to the questions you are most likely to ask. The developer who did the hack introduced it by saying something like “programming these days is more about searching than anything else”. That reflects how collaborative the sharing of knowledge has become in the world of software development as a result of these cloud based tools for developers.

And this approach will naturally be adopted by other industries. And the entrepreneurs who bring these tools to other industries will most likely be developers who are inspired by GitHub and StackOverflow and tools like that. We are starting to see that in lots of interesting places.


Comments (Archived):

  1. Aaron Klein

    It’s fascinating to me how there are still some who don’t grasp this concept and want to “throw up the paywall” on every level of their expertise.They’re so paranoid about protecting their “secret formula to success” that they fail to build any kind of reputation in this new world. And they quickly fall behind.A lot of smart investment advisors are starting to figure this out. Their unique value comes not from their particular choice of funds, or the allocation they make to each one. It comes from how they help clients understand, plan for and achieve their goals through controlling risk.And that requires building a reputation as a trusted source of that advice.

    1. fredwilson

      i have a friend who has been trading currencies his entire professional life. he is amazing at it and has done very well. four of five years ago he started publishing his ideas on twitter and quickly built a large following. it’s been great for his trading and his business

      1. Aaron Klein

        Twitter and StockTwits have hugely disrupted the educational business units of many of these finance companies, and it’s largely gone unnoticed.Prior to Riskalyze, I was running global product for the education and tools business for one of them, and the handwriting was on the wall. It was the classic disruption dilemma — and they wouldn’t let me roll out half of the products we were planning because “that would cannibalize the existing business.”I didn’t get everything right while I was there, but I’m convinced that if we’d shifted to the new model, the business could have thrived. I’ll never really know…after four years of banging my head against that wall, I finally realized I couldn’t build what I wanted to build unless I was running my own show. 🙂

        1. pointsnfigures

          I should follow that currency trader. who is he? Ironically, the hot money that constantly sloshes around markets is flowing out of hard commodities, and into currencies. It’s going to be the next hot market (which will help Bitcoin)

      2. Richard

        Can you speak to the success of the business model of GitHub? Revenue seems to come from larger companies paying for (private) github accounts?

        1. fredwilson

          freemium. it’s awesome. the word was invented here at AVC!!!

          1. jason wright

            isn’t freemium a bit of a misnomer? i agree, there’s no such thing as a free lunch. there’s no such thing as the free interwebs, unless giving away our data for free is part of the model.

          2. Aaron Klein

            Go read the freemium post. Start with free, then offer premium tiers and you build an amazing business.Doesn’t work for every product, but it’s amazing for many.

          3. Matt A. Myers

            It’s free-until-you-get-to-the-premium. It’s basically a limited demo that’s useful enough to keep you around.

          4. Matt Zagaja

            In the 90s we called it shareware. 😉

          5. awaldstein

            Yup–Shareware was idea with many implementations.We pioneered the ‘lite’ video game as a variant of it at CREAF, distributing north of 30M copies of games and shareware with our cards.Hugely successful but I can tell you as the one that cut the deals that it was anything but an easy sell to the content producers at first.

          6. Matt A. Myers

            Freemium model leading to $100 million investment is pretty awesome too.

          7. Matt Zagaja

            It’s how I found AVC. I’ve been an avid watcher of TED talks since they started posting them online (though less so recently). They posted a video of a guy named Gary Vaynerchuk at a Web 2.0 conference. He talked about meeting with a guy named Fred Wilson who coined the word “freemium” and I asked google “who is Fred Wilson?”

          8. ShanaC

            except actually someone in the comments did…

          9. Salt Shaker

            Presume you’ve blogged about freemium biz models, but was curious if you think many companies don’t model it correctly? The value prop between free/pay needs to be large enough to justify an investment, and in many instances it just isn’t. Pandora and Spotify are two companies that come to mind, with very low free-to-pay conversion rates. The margins on their ad rev dependent free services are minuscule (if not a loss leader), in part due to high royalty payments. To drive conversion to pay IMO they really need to deliver far more value (e.g. exclusive access to tracks, tix, meet & greets) vs. their free service, and relative to You Tube, Soundcloud, etc. They need to market their pay services like a club, with membership privileges. Far, far too many premium sub businesses don’t invest and manage their growth based on the lifetime value of a sub due to short-term profit pressure.

          10. fredwilson

            getting the model right is hard, way harder than people think

          11. sigmaalgebra

            It was a bright idea, simple, widely applicable,and very valuable.

        2. cyanbane

          I don’t know their financials, but I have a hunch that they sell a lot of smaller accounts also. I (and most of the other coders I know) am perfectly fine paying them for the small/medium plans just as a backed-up repository for any small bits of code I write. Never trust a hard drive.

          1. Matt A. Myers

            Yup. If you’re getting paid upwards $40+ an hour, $20 a month is nothing.

      3. howardlindzon

        its simple journalling. the best traders have always done it. Open journalling just happens to be even more interesting with wider benefits

        1. Aaron Klein

          Very true.

      4. mikenolan99

        I always loved James Altucher’s tweet “All currency traders seem to forget that their opponents are Vladmir Putin and Ben Bernanke”

      5. ShanaC

        who – I just think would be interesting to read

    2. LE

      They’re so paranoid about protecting their “secret formula to success” that they fail to build any kind of reputation in this new world. And they quickly fall behind.That seems like a very all inclusive statement that fails to recognize that the majority of people in business have more to lose by being open than to gain. Not to mention that their is the opportunity cost of being open (it takes time and effort).Could you please clarify exactly what you mean with regard to those who may have a reason to protect their “secret formula to success” and those that don’t? Or are you really saying “everybody or practically everybody” (because I actually see the inverse IRL).If you are trying to relate a statement for investment advisers then since that is at least (one of) your areas of expertise then I can’t take issue with that. But your statement seems very absolute and all encompassing.

      1. Aaron Klein

        At a very basic level, let’s look at it this way.There are two consultants that know how to solve a particular problem.Consultant A uses Twitter, Quora and other such tools to share expertise, build a community and develop a reputation for being knowledgeable about solving the problem.Consultant B says “I am an expert in X. If you retain me as your consultant, I will share my expertise by solving the problem for you.”The vast majority of people prefer to have problems solved for them, rather than trying to become an expert and solve the problem themselves.It has become VERY clear that Consultant A has a huge advantage in winning that business over Consultant B, and he has marketing costs that are 70% to 100% lower.The democratization of knowledge has destroyed the “secret formula” as a business model. Yet it has opened up broad new capabilities for people to expose the secret formula, build reputation from it, and profit immensely from it.Case in point: you are known as the Domains Guy here at AVC. If I needed to broker a domain purchase, there is no question who I’d call. And that’s because you’ve shared your knowledge and established yourself as the expert in my mind.If someone coldly tells me “I have a secret formula for getting domains at 50% less than anyone else,” I would laugh and call you.Edit: Tweaked the description of Consultant B to make it clearer.

        1. sigmaalgebra

          > The democratization of knowledge has destroyed the “secret formula” as a business model.Fantastic! Now you can tell me just where Ican read just how the heck James Simons did it!!!!! Maybe he used the Chern-Simonsresult in differential geometry although somehow I suspect not! Whatever, he convincingly blew away the ‘efficient markethypothesis’.Or, yesterday here I wrote about the resultsthat each closed, convex subset of a Hilbertspace as a unique vector of minimum lengthand that the set of all real valued randomvariables such that E[X^2] is finite is aHilbert space. Then I claimed that there was something that could be done with those results, and that what I had in mind doing was a “secret”.So, you know just where I could find mysecret on-line? I dreamed up the exploitationon my own, with some more math, butit must all be known, right? I mean, that anyone could do anything new and difficultto duplicate or equal is past due to the Internet, GitHub, and Twitter, right?I’d take Consultant S, Simons, whether hewas on Twitter or not!There is a subtext to your post that you don’t believe that there could be anythingnew and important not yet well known inpublic and that any claim of such a resultwas laughable. Well, let’s see: For somethinglike GPS, it can help to have a ‘drag-free’ satellite.Now maybe one way to do that is on-linesomewhere, but, before a guy I knew dreamedup how, no one knew. Imagine that wanteda drag-free satellite: How to do that? Easy,right?There are new results, “new, correct, significant”,non-trivial, difficult to duplicate or equal, by thethousands each year, and if not published, justdarned difficult to dream up — darned difficult.Head cracking difficult. Like, work a fewyears full time and still not see how. Some ofthose new results can be powerful as solutionsto difficult technical problems and where thesolved technical problem can be a valuablebusiness asset.If someone claims he can do it for half theusual cost, might want to listen and see ifhe has some good evidence. E.g., it wasnot so long ago, still burned into my memory,that one month I had a $700 phone bill, justfrom calling around in the US. Now I haveunlimited long distance for whatever it is,maybe $20 a month, in with my Internetaccess. So, the price has fallen by a factor of 35; falling by a factor of just2 is common — often a piece of cake!At about the high point of the US longdistance voice network before thebig rise of the commercial Internet, thetotal bandwidth was about 30 Gpbs.Trivial! Now can get 40 Gpbs on justone wavelength, of some dozens,on one optical fiber, of maybe 144in one cable. Can get a 10 GbpsEthernet network adapter card, likelycommon in server farms, and threesuch cards have the bandwidth of theentire, old voice network! Prices canfall, a lot!Progress nearly beyond belief reallyis possible.

        2. ShanaC

          Consultant A did not build a community – they hooked into existing ones. It is a form of being someone elses errr, female dog

          1. Aaron Klein

            Totally disagree.My Twitter account came with zero followers. Did yours come pre-stocked or something?

          2. ShanaC

            nope – but it came with other twitter users that I could follow. The first community was basically what happened right after the first tweet. Before that, there was no one to talk to.

        3. JamesHRH

          Consultants have nothing to lose except their time.Did the Tetra Pak guys –… – publish their secret sauce in 1954?Nope.Openess is better, but I do not blame people for being careful.

          1. Aaron Klein

            There is a difference between building reputation and total transparency. There is a boatload of secret sauce that we don’t publish or share at Riskalyze. Trade secrets that our perceived or future competitors will struggle to figure out.You can have one without the other.

    3. Brandon Marker

      building a reputation = building a communityI feel this can’t be stressed enough to founders, no matter what stage of the business they’re in.

      1. ShanaC

        A reputation is part of being in a community. It isn’t the same as creating one though. Different things all togther

        1. Brandon Marker

          how do you have a reputation without a dedicated community supporting/building it?you must build the community for it to support your reputation.

          1. ShanaC

            So a reputation needs communities to exist – the community coming into itself doesn’t necessarily need reputations, it could flow through as a fact of the creation of the community.The reputation can only exist after the community is built.

          2. Brandon Marker

            Totally. I think we’re saying the same thing. The oversimplification in my first comment was misleading 🙂

  2. William Mougayar

    Yup, collective intelligence is a powerful thing that the Internet enables.Almost all ideas are made-up of, or build upon other ideas.

    1. jason wright

      yes, each one of us is a synapse, and collectively we are the new super brain. the internet is the ultimate neural network.

  3. Julien

    What’s most fascinating about Github is that it’s an extremely successful “paid” (fremium) service. They explictly picked their business model as something where people pay for the service. It’s not that frequent in popular web apps.It’s also extremely satisfying to see that Github is built around an very open technology : git is both an open source library, an open source executable and (more importantly!) an open protocol.Github shows that 1) you can charge people for your service and they’ll happily pay, 2) you can build sustainable businesses around the open web.

    1. awaldstein

      Will people pay for value on the web?I think yes but the barrier to subscriptions is still real structurally real on the web.Micro transactions and other frictionless handshakes will I think change the payment/Freemium landscape.

      1. Julien

        Well, if Github does it, why would other apps not do it? But I agree there is more to do to reach a level where it’s acceptably good.[PS: I owe you an email…!]

        1. awaldstein

          All behaviors are not equal cross segments and sharing itself, is more core to some as well.I agree with Fred, you need to look at this for every market you work in. You need to find the right match for how (and how to monetize it) for each one though.

      2. Matt Zagaja

        Yep. Apple likes to brag how many credit cards it has stored in its system, but when I tell a friend to download an app (and I usually ask them to do it in front of me) it’s incredible what percentage of them do not know their iTunes passwords. They went through the process once and then never use it again. Amazon 1-click is incredible when you’re logged in and it doesn’t ask, as is TouchID when it works (which is maybe 60% of the time).

        1. awaldstein

          Yup Amazon one-click works perfectly.Re: iTunes, it both really sucks and really does work. And makes real dollars from customers who are happy to pay.Does the massive database of CC within iTunes have value-w/o a doubt!

      3. LE

        Perhaps but I think what we see is that people (the masses) satisfice in their quest for information.Not only that but psychologically there is a negative to spending any money at all (even micro payment or with no friction) when there is a ready source of free information out there that is good enough. It seems wasteful.Also how to you battle the crowd effect that provides masses of free information with a paid model of any type that in theory would be driven by less information even if it was by more qualified individuals? And expect the consumer of the information (that knows very little) to see the difference? And that assumes that the individual even has an ongoing need for that information.

        1. awaldstein

          People pay for courses, information, consulting, advice all day long.Online and off.Connect the right need with the right product in the right way, and it can work.

        2. Matt Zagaja

          Yet Borders was destroyed by instead of the local library and the MOOCs have not even dented enrollment into Harvard and MIT.

          1. ShanaC

            it took a while

  4. MogulAzam

    As a former lab rat this is awesome and long overdue. The labs need to me more connected and greater amount of knowledge needs to be shared. Innovations in basic science are built on shared knowledge and resources.

    1. pointsnfigures

      You’ll get better peer review, and quicker turnaround.

  5. Kirsten Lambertsen

    Just look at everything Stack is up to…Stack Overflow is possibly the best thing on the internets.

    1. Drew Meyers

      “Stack Overflow is possibly the best thing on the internets.”There are many, many, many entrepreneurs who would disagree w/ that statement 🙂

      1. Kirsten Lambertsen

        Ha! True. But I bet a lot, if not most of them, have used it 🙂

  6. takingpitches

    The new reputation is moving away from flawed institutional inter-mediation (brand name of a firm for example) to crowd-sourced reputation and identity verification tied to sharing and search of knowledge.

  7. JimHirshfield

    I think “This for That” makes you suspicious of the product or business model being pitched to you, as you’ve said. But at a certain point, when you zoom out, lots of things are “This for That”. And so there will be “This for That” investments that you’ll make, if I can be so bold as to make a prediction.

    1. Matt A. Myers

      I think the suspicion for me would come from wondering if the founders actually know why “this for that” would be good and valuable, and why it actually works the way it does – why those ecosystems were successful.

    2. Aaron Klein

      I think the reaction was driven by overuse.Google was once “Encyclopedia Britannica for the Internet.”

      1. JimHirshfield

        Overuse definitely spawns resistance.

        1. LE

          Overuse definitely spawns resistance.It’s also that overuse spawns annoyance.Remembering back in the 90’s how irritating it was to constantly hear “our value proposition is”. Or in the 00’s every person of a certain age started off a sentence with “so”.There must be a chart on the net showing how a phrase gets adopted, overused and then disappears. [1](This is something that disqus could actually provide some data on and gain main stream publicity by giving it to the press.)[1] God I can’t even bear to end this by saying “just sayin”.

          1. JimHirshfield


          2. Matt Zagaja

            There seems to be a contingent of people that believe these phrases are shibboleths that will get them in the door.

  8. Matt A. Myers

    Idea modelling, like role modelling, is how we all learn. Models are the perfect learning object. They’re usually, if not required to be, multi-dimensional which gives our brain many working pieces to cross-integrate, allowing connections for neural pathways to more easily be made and to occur.GitHub for _______.Platform for _______.The one negative factor I see existing in the relationship of innovation occurring is because of our capitalistic system. Only the ideas that will have significant potential for significant revenue gains will ever have the resources and time of people allocated to them.GitHub facilitates 10s of millions, perhaps will be 100s of millions of people in the future – though there are many other valuable, smaller markets/niches, that would highly benefit from such a platform. I would like to help change this, and I have some ideas on how to foster this.EDIT: Expanded this a bit at

  9. Pete Griffiths

    Programming as searching and patching does not necessarily enhance understanding. Some of the convos on StackOverflow sound like the invocation of magic recipes.

    1. Sebastian Wain

      I practice QAOP (Question and Answer Oriented Programming!) and think that is great. For example, there are obscure technologies such as programming Microsoft Outlook. Microsoft offers multiple APIs but even when you have a deep knowledge of it there are a lot of tricks that you can’t learn everywhere and Stack Overflow is one of the places when you can find or contribute with recipes.I am not saying that you can replace your education with these techniques but in many cases is like flying at supersonic speed and it feels great.

      1. Pete Griffiths

        I find some of the conversations downright scary. The paradigmatic case is people developing in frameworks such as Rails. The obvious advantage is productivity, particularly when getting a relatively small site up and running. But the problems such frameworks introduce, most especially on large complex sites, can become subtle and hard to remedy. Conversations which go along the lines of “I got this error message from Rails – XXXXX” and lead to answers like “I had that. I found that by YYYYY it went away” scare the shit out of me. A succession of remedies that may make the error message vanish but the developer gains no understanding of the underlying problem (if any!). The YYY remedies read like incantations. “Try inserting a semi-colon then move line 26 up 2 lines in your routing table. It worked for me.” Jees….

        1. Sebastian Wain

          I completely agree that in this case you must understand what you are doing. Those recommendations sounds like: “it’s good to have a backup just in case your are hacked” instead of trying to find your vulnerabilities.But you added an extra topic in your reply: frameworks. Sometimes frameworks force you to tweak them following recipes because it’s not cost effective to understand the whole framework. It seems like a paradox: you want to use RoR to bootstrap your site quickly but at the same time you need to spend a lot of time understanding the framework to do the proper tweaks.

          1. Pete Griffiths

            I did indeed throw frameworks into the mix. And any convo on SO that addresses problems related to frameworks makes my blood run cold. 🙂

  10. Thomas Ott

    I think we’re witnessing – or in part are already living it – hyper innovation. The collaborative tools, social media, and the ability to virtually meet liked minded people worldwide is leading to innovations we couldn’t even dream of a few years ago.In the old days some tinkerer had a great idea for “X” and he/she created it and tried to get financial backing. Now that same tinkerer can go out on the Internet and find connect with other tinkerers and create an innovation that is greater than the sum of the individual. It’s faster, better, and can make a greater impact in society.

  11. falicon

    Nice – that is how I’ve been sharing some of my story these days as well. For those that know what github is (not everyone I talk to does), I often say Coach Wizard ( ) is doing for coaching what github does for coding.Though we have used many of their tools as inspiration for our own tools, the *real* inspiration has been in the overall model they use (public free, private pay)…it just maps so nicely to our mission as well.

  12. Jim Kittridge

    The world is becoming more collaborative. Our growth in the future will depend on everyone working together. I’m glad that there are more collaborative tools. I’m not a fan of the “[insert popular internet site here] of [industry]” but sometimes that is the quickest way to explain it.

  13. howardlindzon

    Same thing for quants and financial datasets…i know Kensho is working on stuff like this and a few other companies we are looking at

  14. Matt Zagaja

    I see many ideas and technologies that I think would be useful in the political space. However the decision makers will not buy them unless they are being specifically marketed to. Even then they are reluctant. Though maybe rightly so, many political customers are not equipped with the knowledge and skills to navigate purchasing new technologies.Joel Spolsky once wrote a post about how the cost of expensive software was really just paying for the salaries of the sales people to sell it to you and that is why you either have cheap software or expensive software. As I have seen more and more of the real world, I have come to experience how true that is.

  15. Robert Shedd

    >> I was at a hackathon up at Columbia University last weekend and one of the >> hacks was a development environment that automatically queried StackOverflow >> and GitHub as you are writing code so that you always have in front of you >> the answers to the questions you are most likely to ask.Sounds neat! Is there a link to the project or did you happen to catch the name of the developer(s) building it?This appears to be the hackathon’s site: https://www.hackerleague.or…But unfortunately, this particular project isn’t listed.

      1. Robert Shedd

        Great, thanks!

  16. aguynamedloren

    The public aspect is really where the magic is, and this is what every ‘collaborative utility for X’ is missing. Every single one of them focuses on being a collaboration tool instead of being a collaboration platform. There’s a huge difference between a tool and a platform.Git is a tool. Github is a platform. It has all the collaboration tools I need for software development, but it also has public content that I can pull from, which is 10x better than git alone.

  17. sigmaalgebra

    > “programming these days is more about searching than anything else”.Yup.(1) When coding and need to do something I’ve done before, one ofthe first steps is to find my old code, read my comments, myreferences to on-line documentation, and my old code, copythe old code and comments, edit a little for the new usage,and continue on. So, right, I “search”.(2) When looking for documentation, I pound hard on Google –if they charged me a penny a search, then they’d be worthtwice what they are today! So, right, I “search”.But, such work is just the low level routine part of softwaredevelopment, software design, and doing a startup!And so far I’ve never used GitHub or any such repositoryor ‘version control’ system. But, yes, with team development,’version control’, and good organization of the work and workproducts more generally can become important? Alwaysare important? Actually, no: I’ve seen good work on serioussoftware by teams that used essentially nothing in versioncontrol, ‘test buckets’, or code ‘repositories’; the simple approach caused no problems.If someone can get a good startup X via ‘GitHub for X’, fine.But in general I’d guess that mostly such businesses wouldnot be very successful, from a ‘lifestyle’ business down toa flop. So, instead of trying to evaluate the potential of’GitHub for X’, I’d just look at the particular cases of X.There some of the usual criteria would apply: (1) Importantproblem. (2) First good or a much better solution, difficultto duplicate or equal. (3) Good barriers to entry; look first for a strong network effect. (4) Either many users from which can get a little revenue per user or a few usersfrom which can get a lot of revenue per user — eithercase, plenty of revenue. (5) For the team in question,easy enough to do the work well.

  18. Seenator

    Funny you mentioned the “programming these days is more about searching than anything else”The #1 ranked story on HN right now is about Bing integrating code search (from Stack, MSDN etc ) into their dev tools:

    1. fredwilson

      yeah, i saw that

  19. ChuckEats

    no reason Github themselves can’t dominate all of the verticals, not just programming. kinda strange they haven’t – just put a nicer wrapper around the interface for non-programmers.that’s the power of the platform, right?

    1. fredwilson

      that’s like saying facebook will dominate social or kickstarter will dominate crowdfunding or uber will dominate ride sharing. that’s what people think will happen. but it doesn’t work out that way.

  20. Semil Shah

    This line reminds me also of what the Bitcoin protocol can do for creators: “The power of the GitHub model is not just a repository of work and version control in the cloud. It’s the public nature of much of that work. And the reputation and identity effects for those who publish some or all of their work publicly. “

    1. JamesHRH

      I think this line of thinking is a major issue and that the rising tide of valuing reputation over performance needs to ebb.The great lie of the internet is that things are more open. Openness is like the old joke about authenticity – ‘once you learn to fake it, you have it made.’How many time has Fred time lagged investment announcements? And he is as open as it gets.How open is Apple? Google? FB? Twitter won’t let you post tweets to other social media sites……….openess is for suckers is what these founders would say.

  21. ShanaC

    Among the things I wish I was working on, if I wasn’t working on something completely awesome:Github for recipes. Because comments on recipes is so much less helpful than forking a recipe. plus I keep writing notes in my recipes….

  22. taflord

    All places except research, which is ironic. Don’t you think?

  23. David Albert

    K-12 education seems to be an interesting application for this theory. Specifically, allow teachers to share lesson plans, rubrics etc

    1. fredwilson

      that happens a lot on edmodo, which is a free cloud service for teachers and students and is a USV portfolio company

  24. jonathanjaeger

    I heard Steve talk about Splice at the music tech meetup at USV and the talk was very inspiring.The vision was clear despite what seems like a very difficult technical solution to make all the moving parts work for collaborating in the cloud.

  25. Roger Dickey

    @fredwilson:disqus that hackathon project sounds really cool. do you recall the name?

    1. fredwilson

      i think it was called Code Hero

  26. Sytse Sijbrandij

    I’m the CEO of GitLab, an open source alternative host your own git repositories. Of course Fred is making a great observation here, there will be better collaboration systems for all kinds of activities. In our opinion a great deal of these will have version control with git. Organizations working on this are starting to use GitLab as their git back-end, one example is O’Reilly Media that works on publishing and was kind enough to contribute back their integration

  27. HopeTByrd


  28. Richard Burton

    @fredwilson:disqus do you happen to remember the name that Stack Overflow/GitHub hack? I’d love to check it out.

  29. MP Cadosch

    This post is underratedly insightful and inspiring, I’m surprised there aren’t any comments on it.Fred – I’m a developer with previous experience in finance, an industry lacking powerful tools such as stack overflow and github. I’m working on a product to fill this need, and would love to get your input if possible. I’d love to speak with you, and if you are interested my email is [email protected]

  30. Russell

    “GitHub and Stack have raised the collective quality of programming” Classic Give to Get! ps Like the new photo too.

  31. Matt A. Myers

    “[…] GitHub and Stack have raised the collective quality of programming.The societal benefit of that is difficult to quantify without actually researching (i.e., that’s work and I’m busy), so I’ll make it up: it makes things more better.”That’s the (hopefully) overarching goal of innovation. 🙂

  32. Anne Libby

    Hmm. Is there a GitHub for recipes?

  33. Elia Freedman

    Stack is the single most important developer resource in the Internet era, easily. GitHub is important, too, but nothing beats StackOverflow.

  34. Steven Roussey

    That’s a funny reference; since there is a company called Battr which is pitched as a github for recipes (allows forking, etc, which is also ironic). So I guess we have come full circle.

  35. Matt A. Myers

    Most people have the fear of survival they’re stuck with, so this will lead to selfish thinking – and how to make money to survive, taking their motivation away from more holistic view of the world. If we solve for fear of survival, the shift will be dramatic. I am hopeful. 🙂

  36. Matt A. Myers

    Oh, I’m not sure the model I have in mind is in place anywhere yet. It starts with self-awareness, intimacy with self, which will lead to intimacy with others – with community. This leads to change.”Be kind to each other, so we can be fierce together.”

  37. jason wright has the potential to reinvent how a society functions.

  38. Matt A. Myers

    Know if there’s a way to get around their forced login?

  39. Anne Libby

    Nice! Thanks, Charlie.

  40. Matt A. Myers

    Tons of them.

  41. Matt Zagaja

    My mother is fond of because she can sort the recipes by reviews, read the comments, and make suggested tweaks to it.

  42. Steven Roussey as discussed above is one.

  43. Drew Meyers

    recipes are just text documents, no? why couldn’t they just use github for it?

  44. Steven Roussey

    Github doesn’t filter for gluten-free nor add all your ingredients into Instacart and have it delivered. 🙂 I’ve met with the founder, so hope I’m not saying too much.

  45. ShanaC

    Battr seems not to allow for public searches. It isn’t like I don’t care if I give away my basic pate sucree, I do care about giving away my secrets for flavoring

  46. Anne Libby

    That’s so interesting. Up in the land of 10,000 lakes, a bunch of people came over for coffee. I gave away a recipe for a vegan banana bread that we had out. One of the older women took me aside and sort of cautioned me about giving away my secrets. #minnesota

  47. Anne Libby

    Thanks! I sometimes go to the same way. But, no forking. Will check out Battr. Thanks, @stevenroussey:disqus.