As students at Berkeley College College, Spencer Kimball and Peter Mattis created a successful open-source graphics program, GIMP, which caught Google’s attention. The two eventually joined Google, and got Kudos in person from Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Kimball and Mattis quickly became famous in the company, and then chose to leave them all behind to start what would eventually become a cockroach. Over the years, Cockroach Labs has more than 250 employees and has received over $ 350 million in total investment from investors such as Benchmark, GV, Index Ventures and Redpoint, according to Crunchbase. The company is now on its way to what some might call a “mandatory IPO”.

The story of CockroachDB, from its origins to its future, is told in a four-part series in our latest EC-1:

I’m biased, but it’s important to read what comes under stress that any early installer might relate to: navigating from heavyweight competitors, to increasing past free levels, to keep your users ’attention. This is the eighth EC-1 we have published to dateDanny Crichton, my colleague and managing editor of TC, estimates that we’ve been given 90,000 words about startups, product development, marketing and more.

For the rest of this newsletter, we’ll cover that weave ork book, sting-sized entrepreneurship, and some SPAC. Will go into Follow me on Twitter nmasc_. Or not, it’s your choice!

The Cult of V

Adam Newman (Weave orkrk) at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2017. Image Credits: TechCrunch

This week Equity, Alex and I interviewed Elliott Brown, who co-wrote “We the Cult of We” with Maureen Farrell. Our conversation touches on some of the book’s eyebrow-raising details and stories, but focuses primarily on it. What The rise and fall of V Work made the position of startups and tech journalism more comprehensive.

Here’s what to look for: Not much has changed. Putting the jokes aside, Brown shared his notes on how the current boom in startup financing is a fierce and worrying air of fluff. He also chatted about how the ever-publishing simple question can be: How do you make a tech company?

More money, more problems?

What about ticket ok again?

tiktok error

Image Credits: TechCrunch

Tickets have been popping up all week. Index Ventures, for example, has noticed how an impressive following has been stored in PayPict’s ticket ok account and is a channel to talk to younger pay generations. There is nothing like hip and some short-form videos to stay relevant while collecting 3 billion at a time.

Here’s what to look for: When the ticket ok or definitely changed the world, I worry when I see the temptation of bite-sized stuff. Sting-sized stuff may be a nifty way to spread the stuff, but it’s not one-size-fits-all. Dualingo, who set the price of his IPO this week, still struggles to show meaningful learning outcomes and optimizes more for motivation than understanding. This tension is a major note for companies such as Numerad and Sololaran, which have both paid off this week, not too much ticket ok learning material.

Other Adtech stuff for your eyes:

Therefore, SPACS.

Hand Sign Check 1

Image Credits: Bryce Durbin / TechCrunch

It’s been a while since I used the acronym in Startups Weekly. That said, special purpose acquisition vehicles are still very much a thing and still worth noting.

Here’s what to look for: The SPAC merger of Lucid Motors was just approved. Journalist Area Alamalhodai The move comes after officials extended the deadline to vote for the merger within a day after enough investors showed up. “This issue is unusual but may become more common as more companies close the traditional IPO path in public markets and merge with SPAC instead,” he writes.

So special:

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