Lecture 3: Counterintuitive Parts of Startups, and How to Have Ideas 第三讲:初创企业中违反直觉的部分,以及如何产生想法

Lecture 3: Counterintuitive Parts of Startups, and How to Have Ideas

第三讲:初创企业中违反直觉的部分,以及如何产生想法

第3讲课程视频

图片[1]_Lecture 3: Counterintuitive Parts of Startups, and How to Have Ideas 第三讲:初创企业中违反直觉的部分,以及如何产生想法_繁木网

讨论地址:http://www.huomen.com/topic-show-id-103.html


One of the advantages of having kids is that when you have to give advice to people you can ask yourself, “what would I tell my own kids?”, and actually you’ll find this really focuses you. So even though my kids are little, my two year old today, when asked what he’ll be after two, said “a bat.” The correct answer was three, but “a bat” is so much more interesting. So even though my kids are little, I already know what I would tell them about startups, if they were in college, so that is what I’m going to tell you. You’re literally going to get what I would tell my own kids, since most of you are young enough to be my own kids.
有孩子的好处之一是,当你不得不给别人提建议时,你可以问自己:“我该怎么告诉我自己的孩子?”,事实上你会发现这真的很吸引你。所以即使我的孩子还小,今天我两岁的孩子,当被问到两岁以后会是什么样的时候,说“一只蝙蝠”。正确的答案是三,但是“一只蝙蝠”更有趣。所以,即使我的孩子还小,我已经知道我会告诉他们什么创业,如果他们在大学,所以这就是我要告诉你的。你真的会明白我会告诉我自己的孩子们什么,因为你们中的大多数人还年轻到可以成为我自己的孩子。
Startups are very counterintuitive and I’m not sure exactly why. It could be simply because knowledge about them has not permeated our culture yet, but whatever the reason, this is an area where you cannot trust your intuition all the time. It’s like skiing in that way – any of you guys learn to ski as adults? When you first try skiing and you want to slow down, your first impulse is to lean back, just like in everything else. But lean back on the skis and you fly down the hill out of control. So, as I learned, part of learning to ski is learning to suppress that impulse. Eventually you get new habits, but in the beginning there is this list of things you’re trying to remember as you start down the hill: alternate feet, make s-turns, do not drag the inside foot, all this stuff.
初创公司是非常违反直觉的,我不知道确切的原因。这可能仅仅是因为关于它们的知识还没有渗透到我们的文化中,但不管是什么原因,这是一个你不能一直相信自己直觉的领域。这就像是在滑雪那样-你们中有人学习滑雪成人?当你第一次尝试滑雪,你想放慢速度,你的第一个冲动是向后倾,就像在其他一切。但是向后靠在滑雪板上,你就会失控地飞下山。所以,正如我所学到的,学习滑雪的一部分就是学会抑制这种冲动。最终你会有新的习惯,但在开始的时候,你要记住一系列的事情:双脚交替,做s形转弯,不要拖拽内侧的脚,所有这些。
Startups are as unnatural as skiing and there is a similar list of stuff you have to remember for startups. What I’m going to give you today is the beginning of the list, the list of the counterintuitive stuff you have to remember to prevent your existing instincts from leading you astray.
创业就像滑雪一样不自然,创业者也要记住一系列类似的东西。我今天要给你们的是这个清单的开头,这个清单列出了一些你必须记住的反直觉的东西,以防止你现有的直觉把你引入歧途。
The first thing on it is the fact I just mentioned: startups are so weird that if you follow your instincts they will lead you astray. If you remember nothing more than that, when you’re about to make a mistake, you can pause before making it. When I was running Y Combinator we used to joke that our function was to tell founders things they would ignore, and it’s really true. Batch after batch the YC partners warned founders about mistakes they were about to make and the founders ignored them, and they came back a year later and said, “I wish we’d listened.” But that dude is in their cap table and there is nothing they can do.
首先是我刚才提到的一个事实:初创公司太奇怪了,如果你凭直觉行事,他们会把你引入歧途。如果你只记得这些,当你要犯错的时候,你可以在犯错之前停下来。当我运行Y Combinator时,我们经常开玩笑说,我们的功能是告诉创始人他们会忽略的事情,这是真的。一批又一批的YC合伙人警告创始人他们将要犯的错误,而创始人却置之不理,一年后他们回来说:“我希望我们能听进去。”但那家伙在他们的cap表中,他们无能为力。
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Q: Why do founders persistently ignore the partner’s advice?
Q: 为什么创始人总是无视合伙人的建议?
A: That’s the thing about counterintuitive ideas, they contradict your intuitions, they seem wrong, so of course your first impulse is to ignore them and, in fact, that’s not just the curse of Y Combinator, but to some extent our raison d’être. You don’t need people to give you advice that does not surprise you. If founders’ existing intuition gave them the right answers, they would not need us. That’s why there are a lot of ski instructors, and not many running instructors; you don’t see those words together, “running instructor,” as much as you see “ski instructor.” It’s because skiing is counterintuitive, sort of what YC is—business ski instructors—except you are going up slopes instead of down them, well ideally.
A: 这就是反直觉的想法,它们与你的直觉相矛盾,它们看起来是错误的,所以你的第一个冲动当然是忽略它们,事实上,这不仅仅是Y Combinator的诅咒,而是某种程度上我们存在的理由。你不需要别人给你不让你吃惊的建议。如果创始人现有的直觉给了他们正确的答案,他们就不需要我们了。这就是为什么有很多滑雪教练,而没有很多跑步教练;你看不到这些词在一起,“跑步教练”,就像你看到的“滑雪教练”。这是因为滑雪是违反直觉的,有点像YC是商务滑雪教练,除了你要上斜坡而不是下坡,很理想。
You can, however, trust your instincts about people. Your life so far hasn’t been much like starting a startup, but all the interactions you’ve had with people are just like the interactions you have with people in the business world. In fact, one of the big mistakes that founders make is to not trust their intuition about people enough. They meet someone, who seems impressive, but about whom they feel some misgivings and then later when things blow up, they say, “You know I knew there was something wrong about that guy, but I ignored it because he seemed so impressive.”
然而,你可以相信你对人的直觉。到目前为止,你的生活还不太像创业,但你与人之间的所有互动就像你与商界人士之间的互动一样。事实上,创始人犯的一个大错误就是对自己对人的直觉不够信任。他们遇到了一个人,他看起来令人印象深刻,但他们对他感到有些疑虑,然后当事情爆发时,他们说,“你知道我知道那家伙有什么不对劲,但我忽略了,因为他看起来很令人印象深刻。”

There is this specific sub-case in business, especially if you come from an engineering background, as I believe you all do. You think business is supposed to be this slightly distasteful thing. So when you meet people who seem smart, but somehow distasteful, you think, “Okay this must be normal for business,” but it’s not. Just pick people the way you would pick people if you were picking friends. This is one of those rare cases where it works to be self indulgent. Work with people you would generally like and respect and that you have known long enough to be sure about because there are a lot of people who are really good at seeming likable for a while. Just wait till your interests are opposed and then you’ll see.
在商业中有这样一个特殊的子案例,特别是如果你有工程背景,我相信你们都有。你认为生意应该是有点讨厌的事情。所以,当你遇到那些看起来聪明,但又不怎么讨人喜欢的人时,你会想,“好吧,这对生意来说一定很正常”,但事实并非如此。就像挑选朋友一样挑选人。这是极少数自我放纵的情况之一。与你通常喜欢和尊敬的人一起工作,而且你认识的时间足够长,可以确定,因为有很多人在一段时间内都很擅长表现得讨人喜欢。等你的利益遭到反对,你就会明白了。
The second counterintuitive point, this might come as a little bit of a disappointment, but what you need to succeed in a startup is not expertise in startups. That makes this class different from most other classes you take. You take a French class, at the end of it you’ve learned how to speech French. You do the work, you may not sound exactly like a French person, but pretty close, right? This class can teach you about startups, but that is not what you need to know. What you need to know to succeed in a startup is not expertise in startups, what you need is expertise in your own users.
第二个违反直觉的观点是,这可能会让人有点失望,但要想在初创企业中取得成功,你需要的不是初创企业的专业知识。这使得这门课和你上的其他课不同。你上了一堂法语课,最后你学会了说法语。你做的工作,你可能听起来不像法国人,但很接近,对吧?这门课可以教你创业,但这不是你需要知道的。要想在初创企业取得成功,你需要知道的不是初创企业的专业知识,而是你自己用户的专业知识。
Mark Zuckerberg did not succeed at Facebook because he was an expert in startups, he succeeded despite being a complete noob at startups; I mean Facebook was first incorporated as a Florida LLC. Even you guys know better than that. He succeeded despite being a complete noob at startups because he understood his users very well. Most of you don’t know the mechanics of raising an angel round, right? If you feel bad about that, don’t, because I can tell you Mark Zuckerberg probably doesn’t know the mechanics of raising an angel round either; if he was even paying attention when Ron Conway wrote him the big check, he probably has forgotten about it by now.
马克·扎克伯格之所以没有在Facebook上取得成功,是因为他是初创企业的专家,尽管他在初创企业里是个彻头彻尾的无名小卒,但他还是成功了;我的意思是,Facebook最初是作为一家佛罗里达有限责任公司成立的。就连你们这些家伙都比这更清楚。他成功了,尽管他在初创公司里是个彻头彻尾的笨蛋,因为他非常了解他的用户。你们中的大多数人都不知道如何培养天使,对吧?如果你对此感到不安,那就不要这样做,因为我可以告诉你,马克·扎克伯格可能也不知道如何培养一个天使;如果他在罗恩·康威给他开大支票的时候也注意到了,他现在可能已经忘了这件事。
In fact, I worry it’s not merely unnecessary for people to learn in detail about the mechanics of starting a startup, but possibly somewhat dangerous because another characteristic mistake of young founders starting startups is to go through the motions of starting a startup. They come up with some plausible sounding idea, they raise funding to get a nice valuation, then the next step is they rent a nice office in SoMa and hire a bunch of their friends, until they gradually realize how completely fucked they are because while imitating all the outward forms of starting a startup, they have neglected the one thing that is actually essential, which is to make something people want. By the way that’s the only use of that swear word, except for the initial one, that was involuntary and I did check with Sam if it would be okay; he said he had done it several times, I mean use the word.
事实上,我担心人们不仅没有必要详细了解创业的机制,而且可能有点危险,因为年轻创业者创业的另一个典型错误是走过创业的道路。他们提出了一些听起来似乎有理的想法,他们筹集资金以获得一个好的估值,然后下一步是他们在索马租了一间好办公室,并雇佣了一帮朋友,直到他们逐渐意识到自己是多么的完蛋,因为在模仿创业的所有外在形式时,他们忽略了一件事,那就是事实上是必要的,那就是制造人们想要的东西。顺便说一句,这是那个咒骂词的唯一用法,除了开头的那句,那是非自愿的,我确实和萨姆核实过是否可以;他说他做了好几次,我是说用这个词。

We saw this happen so often, people going through the motion of starting a startup, that we made up a name for it: “Playing House.” Eventually I realized why it was happening, the reason young founders go though the motions of starting a startup is because that is what they have been trained to do, their whole life, up to this point. Think about what it takes to get into college: extracurricular activities? Check. Even in college classes most of the work you do is as artificial as running laps, and I’m not attacking the educational system for being this way, inevitably the work that you do to learn something is going to have some amount of fakeness to it. And if you measure people’s performance they will inevitably exploit the difference to the degree that what you’re measuring is largely an artifact of the fakeness.
我们经常看到这种情况发生,人们经历创业的过程,于是我们给它起了一个名字:“玩房子”。最终我意识到了为什么会发生这种情况,年轻的创业者之所以会选择创业,是因为这是他们一生都在接受的训练,直到现在。想想上大学需要什么:课外活动?检查。即使是在大学课堂上,你所做的大部分工作都是像跑几圈一样的人为的,我并不是在攻击教育系统的这种方式,不可避免地你所做的学习工作会有一些虚假的东西。如果你衡量人们的表现,他们将不可避免地利用这种差异,以至于你所衡量的很大程度上是虚假的产物。
I confess that I did this myself in college; in fact, here is a useful tip on getting good grades. I found that in a lot of classes there might only be twenty or thirty ideas that had the right shape to make good exam questions. So the way I studied for exams in these classes was not to master the material in the class, but to try and figure out what the exam questions would be and work out the answers in advance. For me the test was not like, what my answers would be on my exam, for me the test was which of my exam questions would show up on the exam. So I would get my grade instantly, I would walk into the exam and look at the questions and see how many I got right, essentially. It works in a lot of classes, especially CS classes. I remember automata theory, there are only a few things that make sense to ask about automata theory.
我承认这是我在大学里自己做的;事实上,这里有一个关于取得好成绩的有用建议。我发现,在很多课堂上,可能只有二三十个想法有正确的形状,使良好的考试问题。所以我在这些课上备考的方法,不是掌握课堂上的材料,而是想办法搞清楚考题是什么,提前算出答案。对我来说,考试不是,我的答案会是什么,对我来说,考试是我的考试问题会出现在考试中。所以我会立刻得到我的分数,我会走进考试,看看问题,看看有多少我得到正确的,基本上。它适用于很多类,尤其是CS类。我记得自动机理论,关于自动机理论只有几件事是有意义的。
So it’s not surprising that after being effectively trained for their whole lives to play such games, young founders’ first impulse on starting a startup is to find out what the tricks are for this new game. What are the extracurricular activities of startups, what are things I have to do? They always want to know, since apparently the measure of success for a startup is fundraising, another noob mistake. They always want to know, what are the tricks for convincing investors? And we have to tell them the best way to convince investors is to start a startup that is actually doing well, meaning growing fast, and then simply tell investors so.
因此,年轻的创业者们在接受了一辈子有效的游戏训练之后,创业的第一个冲动就是要找出这个新游戏的诀窍,这也就不足为奇了。创业者的课外活动是什么,我要做什么?他们总是想知道,显然衡量一家初创企业成功与否的标准是筹款,这是另一个noob的错误。他们总是想知道,说服投资者的诀窍是什么?我们必须告诉他们,说服投资者的最好方法是创办一家真正做得很好的初创公司,也就是快速成长,然后简单地告诉投资者。
Then they ask okay, so what are the tricks for growing fast, and this is exacerbated by the existence of this term, “Growth Hacks.” Whenever you hear somebody talk about Growth Hacks, just mentally translate it in your mind to “bullshit,” because what we tell them is the way to make your startup grow is to make something that users really love, and then tell them about it. So that’s what you have to do: that’s Growth Hacks right there.
然后他们会问,快速成长的诀窍是什么,而“成长黑客”一词的存在又加剧了这种情况。每当你听到有人谈论成长黑客时,只要在心里把它翻译成“胡说八道”,因为我们告诉他们的是,让你的初创公司成长的方法是让用户真正喜欢的东西,然后告诉他们。所以这就是你要做的:那就是增长黑客。
So many of the conversations the YC partners have with the founders begin with the founders saying a sentence that begins with, “How do I,” and the partners answering with a sentence that begins with, “Just.” Why do they make things so complicated? The reason, I realized, after years of being puzzled by this, is they’re looking for the trick, they’ve been trained to look for the trick.
YC合伙人与创始人的许多对话都是从创始人说一句以“How do I”开头的话开始的,而合伙人则用一句以“Just”开头的话来回答。他们为什么把事情弄得这么复杂?我意识到,经过多年的困惑,原因是他们在寻找诡计,他们已经被训练来寻找诡计。

So, this is the third counterintuitive thing to remember about startups: starting a startup is where gaming the system stops working. Gaming the system may continue to work, if you go to work for a big company, depending on how broken the company is, you may be able to succeed by sucking up to the right person; Giving the impression of productivity by sending emails late at night, or if you’re smart enough changing the clock on your computer, cause who’s going to check the headers, right? I like an audience I can tell jokes to and they laugh. Over in the business school: “headers?” Okay, God this thing is being recorded, I just realized that.
所以,这是第三件关于初创企业的违反直觉的事情:创业就是游戏系统停止工作的地方。游戏系统可能会继续工作,如果你去一家大公司工作,取决于公司的破产程度,你可能会通过讨好合适的人来获得成功;通过深夜发送电子邮件来给人一种生产力的印象,或者如果你够聪明的话改变电脑的时钟,因为谁来检查标题,对吗?我喜欢能讲笑话的观众,他们会笑。在商学院里:“头?”好吧,天哪,这东西被录下来了,我才意识到。
Alright for now on we are sticking strictly to the script. But, in startups, that does not work. There is no boss to trick, how can you trick people, when there is nobody to trick? There are only users and all users care about is whether your software does what they want, right? They’re like sharks, sharks are too stupid to fool, you can’t wave a red flag and fool it, it’s like meat or no meat. You have to have what people want and you only prosper to the extent that you do. The dangerous thing is, especially for you guys, the dangerous thing is that faking does work to some extent with investors.
好吧,现在我们严格按照剧本做。但是,在初创企业中,这是行不通的。没有老板可以忽悠,没有人可以忽悠,你怎么能忽悠人呢?只有用户,所有用户关心的是你的软件是否符合他们的要求,对吗?他们就像鲨鱼,鲨鱼太蠢了,骗不了,你不能挥舞红旗,骗不了它,不管有没有肉都一样。你必须得到人们想要的东西,你只有在你做到的程度上才能成功。最危险的是,尤其是对你们来说,最危险的是,在某种程度上,造假的确对投资者有用。
If you’re really good at knowing what you’re talking about, you can fool investors, for one, maybe two rounds of funding, but it’s not in your interest to do. I mean, you’re all doing this for equity, you’re puling a confidence trick on yourself. Wasting your own time, because the startup is doomed and all you’re doing is wasting your time writing it down. So, stop looking for the trick. There are tricks in startups, as there are in any domain, but they are an order of magnitude less important than solving the real problem. Someone who knows zero about fundraising, but has made something users really love, will have an easier time raising money than someone who knows every trick in the book, but has a flat usage graph.
如果你真的很善于知道自己在说什么,你可以愚弄投资者,比如一轮,也许两轮融资,但这样做并不符合你的利益。我是说,你们这样做是为了公平,你们在欺骗自己。浪费你自己的时间,因为创业注定要失败,你所做的一切都是在浪费时间写下来。所以,别再找把戏了。初创企业有很多诀窍,在任何领域都有,但它们的重要性比解决真正的问题要低一个数量级。一个对筹款一窍不通,但做了用户真正喜欢的东西的人,会比一个知道书中每一个窍门,但有一个平面使用图的人更容易筹款。
Though, in a sense, it’s bad news that gaming the system stops working now, in the sense that you’re deprived of your most powerful weapons and, after all, you spent twenty years mastering them. I find it very exciting that there even exist parts of the world where gaming the system is not how you win. I would have been really excited in college if I explicitly realized that there are parts of the world where gaming the system matters less than others, and some where it hardly matters at all. But there are, and this is one of the most important thing to think about when planning your future. How do you win at each type of work, and what do you want to win by doing it?
不过,从某种意义上说,游戏系统现在停止工作是个坏消息,从某种意义上说,你被剥夺了最强大的武器,毕竟,你花了20年时间掌握它们。我发现这是非常令人兴奋的,甚至有一些地方,世界上的游戏系统不是你如何赢得。如果我清楚地意识到,世界上有些地方玩游戏对系统的重要性比其他地方小,有些地方根本不重要,我在大学里会非常兴奋。但也有,这是规划未来时最重要的考虑之一。你是如何在每一种工作中获胜的?你想通过这样做赢得什么?
That brings us to our fourth counterintuitive point, startups are all consuming. If you start a startup, it will take over your life to a degree that you cannot imagine and if it succeeds it will take over your life for a long time; for several years, at the very least, maybe a decade, maybe the rest of your working life. So there is a real opportunity cost here. It may seem to you that Larry Page has an enviable life, but there are parts of it that are defiantly unenviable. The way the world looks to him is that he started running as fast as he could, at age twenty-five, and he has not stopped to catch his breath since. Every day shit happens within the Google empire that only the emperor can deal with and he, as the emperor, has to deal with it. If he goes on vacation for even a week, a whole backlog of shit accumulates, and he has to bear this, uncomplaining, because: number one, as the company’s daddy, he cannot show fear or weakness; and number two, if you’re a billionaire, you get zero, actually less than zero sympathy, if you complain about having a difficult life.
这就把我们带到了第四个违反直觉的观点:初创企业都在消费。如果你开始创业,它将接管你的生活到你无法想象的程度,如果它成功,它将接管你的生活很长一段时间;几年,至少,也许十年,也许你的工作生涯的其余部分。所以这里有一个真正的机会成本。在你看来,拉里·佩奇的生活令人羡慕,但也有一部分令人难以忍受。全世界对他的看法是,他在25岁时就开始以最快的速度奔跑,此后他再也没有停下来喘口气。谷歌帝国里每天都有大便发生,只有皇帝才能处理,作为皇帝,他必须处理。如果他休假哪怕一个星期,都会积攒一大堆废话,他必须忍受这一切,毫无怨言,因为:第一,作为公司的老爹,他不能表现出恐惧或软弱;第二,如果你是亿万富翁,你得到的同情是零,实际上不到零,如果你抱怨生活艰难。
Which has this strange side effect that the difficulty of being a successful startup founder is concealed from almost everyone who has done it. People who win the one-hundred meter in the Olympics, you walk up to them and they’re out of breath. Larry Page is doing that too, but you never get to see it.
这就产生了一个奇怪的副作用,那就是成为一个成功的创业者的困难几乎对所有做过这件事的人都是隐藏的。在奥运会上赢得百米冠军的人,你走到他们面前,他们会上气不接下气。拉里·佩奇也在这么做,但你永远看不到。

Y Combinator has now funded several companies that could be called big successes and in every single case the founder says the same thing, “It never gets any easier.” The nature of the problems change, so you’re maybe worrying about more glamorous problems like construction delays in your new London offices rather than the broken air conditioner in your studio apartment, but the total volume of worry never decreases. If anything, it increases.
Y Combinator现在资助了几家可以称为大成功的公司,在每一个案例中,创始人都说了同样的话,“从来没有变得更容易。”问题的本质改变了,因此,你可能在担心更迷人的问题,比如新伦敦办公室的施工延误,而不是工作室公寓的空调坏了,但总的担心量永远不会减少。如果有的话,它会增加。
Starting a successful startup is similar to having kids; it’s like a button you press and it changes your life irrevocably. While it’s honestly the best thing—having kids—if you take away one thing from this lecture, remember this: There are a lot of things that are easier to do before you have kids than after, many of which will make you a better parent when you do have kids. In rich countries, most people delay pushing the button for a while and I’m sure you are all intimately familiar with that procedure.
开始一个成功的创业就像生孩子一样,就像按下一个按钮,它会不可逆转地改变你的生活。诚然,如果你从这堂课中去掉一件事,那就是最好的有孩子的事情,记住:有很多事情在你有孩子之前比之后更容易做,当你有孩子的时候,很多事情会让你成为一个更好的父母。在发达国家,大多数人都会推迟按下按钮一段时间,我相信你们都非常熟悉这个过程。
Yet when it comes to starting startups a lot of people seem to think they are supposed to start them in college. Are you crazy? What are the universities thinking – they go out of their way to ensure that their students are well supplied with contraceptives, and yet they are starting up entrepreneurship programs and startup incubators left and right.
然而,在创业方面,很多人似乎认为他们应该在大学里创业。你疯了吗?这些大学是怎么想的呢?他们千方百计确保学生获得充足的避孕药具,但他们却在左右启动创业项目和创业孵化器。
To be fair, the universities have their hand forced here. A lot of incoming students are interested in start-ups. Universities are at least de-facto supposed to prepare you for your career, and so if you’re interested in startups, it seems like universities are supposed to teach you about startups and if they don’t maybe they lose applicants to universities that do claim to do that. So can universities teach you about startups? Well, if not, what are we doing here? Yes and no, as I’ve explained to you about start-ups. Essentially, if you want to learn French, universities can teach you linguistics. That is what this is. This is linguistics: we’re teaching you how to learn languages and what you need to know is how a particular language.
公平地说,大学在这里是被迫的。许多新来的学生对初创企业感兴趣。大学至少事实上应该为你的职业生涯做好准备,所以如果你对初创企业感兴趣,似乎大学应该教你关于初创企业的知识,如果他们不这样做,也许他们会失去申请者,去那些声称自己有创业能力的大学。那么大学能教你创业吗?好吧,如果不是,我们在这里干什么?是和否,正如我已经向你们解释过的关于初创企业的。基本上,如果你想学法语,大学可以教你语言学。就是这样。这就是语言学:我们教你如何学习语言,你需要知道的是如何学习一种特定的语言。
What you need to know are the needs of your own users. You can’t learn those until you actually start the company, which means that starting a startup is something you can intrinsically only learn by doing it. You can’t do that in college for the reason I just explained. Startups take over your entire life. If you start a startup in college, if you start a startup as a student, you can’t start a startup as a student because if you start a startup you’re not a student anymore. You may be nominally a student but you won’t even be that for very much longer. Given this dichotomy: which of the two paths should you take?
你需要知道的是你自己用户的需求。在你真正创办公司之前,你是学不到这些的,也就是说,创办一家初创公司,从本质上来说,你只能通过实践来学习。因为我刚才解释的原因,你不能在大学里这么做。初创公司接管了你的整个生活。如果你在大学里创业,如果你在学生时代创业,你就不能在学生时代创业,因为如果你创业,你就不再是学生了。你可能名义上是一个学生,但你甚至不会是很长时间。考虑到这种二分法:你应该走哪条路?
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Be a real student and not start a startup or start a real startup and not be a student. Well, I can answer that one for you. I’m talking to my own kids here. Do not start a startup in college. I hope I’m not disappointing anyone seriously. Starting a startup could be a good component of a good life for a lot of ambitious people. This is just a part of a much bigger problem that you are trying to solve. How to have a good life, right. Those that are starting a startup could be a good thing to do at some point. Twenty is not the optimal time to do it.
做一个真正的学生而不是创业,或者做一个真正的创业而不是学生。好吧,我可以帮你回答这个问题。我在和我自己的孩子说话。不要在大学里创业。我希望我没有让任何人失望。对于许多雄心勃勃的人来说,创业可能是美好生活的一个很好的组成部分。这只是你要解决的更大问题的一部分。如何过上好日子,对吧。那些正在创业的公司在某个时候可能是一件好事。二十岁不是做这件事的最佳时间。
There are things that you can do in your early twenties that you cannot do as well before or after. Like plunge deeply into projects on a whim that seem like they will have no pay off. Travel super cheaply with no sense of a deadline. In fact they are really isomorphic shapes in different domains.
有些事情你在二十出头就可以做,但在之前或之后都做不好。比如,心血来潮地投入到那些似乎没有回报的项目中。旅行超级便宜,没有最后期限的感觉。事实上,它们在不同的领域是同构的。

For unambitious people your thing can be the dreaded failure to launch. For the ambitious ones it’s a really valuable sort of exploration and if you start a startup at twenty and you are sufficiently successful you will never get to do it.
对于没有野心的人来说,你的事情可能是可怕的发射失败。对于那些雄心勃勃的人来说,这是一种非常有价值的探索,如果你在20岁开始创业,并且你足够成功,你将永远无法做到这一点。
Mark Zuckerberg will never get to bum around a foreign country. If he goes to a foreign county, it’s either as a de-facto state visit or like he’s hiding out incognito at George V in Paris. He’s never going to just like backpack around Thailand if that’s still what people do. Do people still backpack around Thailand? That’s the first real enthusiasm I’ve ever seen from this class. Should have given this talk in Thailand. He can do things you can’t do, like charter jets to fly him to foreign countries. Really big jets. But success has taken a lot of the serendipity out of his life. Facebook is running him as much as he’s running Facebook.
马克·扎克伯格永远不会在外国游荡。如果他去一个外国国家,这要么是事实上的国事访问,要么像他隐姓埋名地躲在巴黎的乔治五世。如果人们还是那样做的话,他永远不会喜欢在泰国到处旅行。人们还背着背包环游泰国吗?这是我在这堂课上看到的第一次真正的热情。应该在泰国做这个演讲。他可以做你做不到的事,比如包机送他去外国。非常大的喷气式飞机。但成功让他的生活失去了很多偶然性。Facebook对他的管理和他对Facebook的管理一样多。
While it can be really cool to be in the grip of some project you consider your life’s work, there are advantages to serendipity. Among other things, it gives you more options to choose your life’s work from. There’s not even a trade off here. You’re not sacrificing anything if you forgo starting a start up at twenty because you will be more likely to succeed if you wait. In the astronomically unlikely case that you are twenty and you have some side project that takes off like Facebook did, then you face a choice to either be running with it or not and maybe it’s reasonable to run with it. Usually the way that start ups take off is for the founders to make them take off. It’s gratuitously stupid to do that at twenty.
虽然掌握一些你认为是你毕生工作的项目真的很酷,但偶然发现还是有好处的。除此之外,它给了你更多的选择你的生活工作。这里甚至没有交易。如果你放弃在20岁开始创业,你不会牺牲任何东西,因为如果你等待,你更有可能成功。在天文学上不太可能的情况下,你是20岁,你有一些像Facebook一样起飞的副项目,然后你面临着一个选择,要么与它运行或不运行,也许是合理的运行与它。通常,初创企业的腾飞方式是创始人让他们腾飞。二十岁做那件事是无缘无故的愚蠢。
Should you do it at any age? Starting a startup may sound kind of hard, if I haven’t made that clear let me try again. Starting a startup is really hard. If it’s too hard, what if you are not up to this challenge?
你应该在任何年龄做吗?创业听起来可能有点难,如果我还没说清楚,让我再试一次。创业真的很难。如果太难了,如果你不能胜任这个挑战呢?
The answer is the fifth counter intuitive point. You can’t tell. Your life so far has given you some idea of what your prospects might be if you wanted to become a mathematician or a professional football player. Boy, it’s not every audience you can say that to. Unless you have had a very strange life indeed you have not done much that’s like starting a startup. Meaning starting a startup will change you a lot if it works out. So what you’re trying to estimate is not just what you are, but what you could become. And who can do that? Well, not me. for the last nine years it was my job to try to guess (I wrote “predict” in here and it came out as “guess”—that’s a very informative Freudian slip). Seriously it’s easy to tell how smart people are in ten minutes. Hit a few tennis balls over the net, and do they hit them back at you or into the net? The hard part and the most important part was predicting how tough and ambitious they would become.
答案是第五个反直觉的观点。你不知道。到目前为止,如果你想成为一名数学家或职业足球运动员,你的生活已经让你对未来有了一些想法。孩子,不是每个观众都能这么说。除非你有一个非常奇怪的生活,事实上,你没有做很多事情,就像开始一个创业。也就是说,如果创业成功了,你会改变很多。所以你所要评估的不仅仅是你是什么样的人,而是你能成为什么样的人。谁能做到?嗯,不是我。在过去的九年里,我的工作是尝试猜测(我在这里写了“预测”,结果是“猜测”——这是一个非常有用的弗洛伊德语录)。说真的,十分钟之内就知道人有多聪明很容易。在网上打几个网球,他们是回击你还是打进网里?最困难也是最重要的是预测他们会变得多么坚强和雄心勃勃。
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There may be no one at this point who has more experience than me in doing this. I can tell you how much an expert can know about that. The answer is not much. I learned from experience to keep completely open mind about which start ups in each batch would turn out to be the stars. The founders sometimes thought they knew. Some arrived feeling confident that they would ace Y Combinator just as they had aced every one of the few easy artificial tests they had faced in life so far. Others arrived wondering what mistake had caused them to be admitted and hoping that no one discover it.
在这一点上,可能没有人比我更有经验。我可以告诉你一个专家对此了解多少。答案并不多。我从经验中学到,要对每一批中的哪些初创企业最终会成为明星持完全开放的态度。创始人有时认为他们知道。有些人到了那里,自信地认为自己会在Y Combinator上取得好成绩,就像他们在迄今为止所面临的为数不多的简单人工测试中都取得了好成绩一样。其他人来了,想知道是什么错误导致他们被承认,希望没人发现。

There is little to no correlation between these attitudes and how things turn out. I’ve read the same is true in the military. The swaggering recruits are no more than likely to turn out to be really tough than the quiet ones and probably for the same reason. The tests are so different from tests in people’s previous lives. If you are absolutely terrified of starting a startup you probably shouldn’t do it. Unless you are one of those people who gets off on doing things you’re afraid of. Otherwise if you are merely unsure of whether you are going to be able to do it, the only way to find out is to try, just not now.
这些态度和事情的结果几乎没有关联。我读过,在军队里也是如此。招摇过市的新兵不太可能比沉默的新兵更强硬,原因可能也是一样的。这些测试与人们前世的测试截然不同。如果你非常害怕创业,你可能不应该这么做。除非你是那种喜欢做你害怕的事情的人。否则,如果你只是不确定自己是否能做到,唯一的办法就是尝试,而不是现在。
So if you want to start a startup one day, what do you do now in college? There are only two things you need initially, an idea and cofounders. The MO for getting both of those is the same which leads to our sixth and last counterintuitive point.
如果有一天你想创业,你现在在大学做什么?最初你只需要两样东西,一个想法和共同创始人。得到这两个的MO是相同的,这导致了我们第六个,也是最后一个违反直觉的观点。
The way to get start up ideas is not to try to think of startup ideas. I have written a whole essay on this and I am not going to repeat the whole thing here. But the short version is that if you make a conscious effort to try to think of startup ideas, you will think of ideas that are not only bad but bad and plausible sounding. Meaning you and everybody else will be fooled by them. You’ll waste a lot of time before realizing they’re no good. The way to come up with good startup ideas is to take a step back. Instead of trying to make a conscious effort to think of startup ideas, turn your brain into the type that has startup ideas unconsciously. In fact, so unconsciously that you don’t even realize at first that they’re startup ideas. This is not only possible: Yahoo, Google, Facebook, Apple all got started this way. None of these companies were supposed to be companies at first, they were all just side projects. The very best ideas almost always have to start as side projects because they’re always such outliers that your conscious mind would reject them as ideas for companies.
获得创业创意的方法不是试图去想创业创意。我已经就此写了一整篇文章,我不打算在这里重复这整件事。但简短的说法是,如果你有意识地试着去想创业的想法,你会想到那些不仅不好而且听起来很糟糕的想法。意味着你和其他人都会被他们愚弄。你会浪费很多时间才意识到它们不好。想出好的创业点子的方法是后退一步。不要试图有意识地去思考创业的想法,而是把你的大脑变成无意识地有创业想法的类型。事实上,在不知不觉中,你甚至一开始都没有意识到它们是创业创意。这不仅是可能的:雅虎、谷歌、Facebook、苹果都是这样起步的。这些公司起初都不应该是公司,它们都只是副业。最好的想法几乎总是从附带项目开始,因为它们总是如此的离群,以至于你的意识会拒绝它们作为公司的想法。
How do you turn your mind into the kind that has startup ideas unconsciously? One, learn about a lot of things that matter. Two, work on problems that interest you. Three, with people you like and or respect. That’s the third part incidentally, is how you get cofounders at the same time as the idea. The first time I wrote that paragraph, instead of learn a lot about things that matter, I wrote become good at some technology. But that prescription is too narrow.
你是如何把你的思维变成无意识地有创业想法的?第一,了解很多重要的事情。第二,解决你感兴趣的问题。第三,和你喜欢或尊敬的人在一起。顺便说一句,这是第三部分,是如何在构思的同时找到共同创始人。我第一次写这段话的时候,我没有学到很多重要的东西,而是写了一些技术方面的东西。但是这个处方太窄了。
What was special about Brain Chesky and Joe Gebbia from Airbnb was not that they were experts in technology. They went to art school, they were experts in design. Perhaps more importantly they were really good at organizing people in getting projects done. So you don’t have to work on technology per se, so long as you work on things that stretch you.
来自Airbnb的Brain Chesky和Joe Gebbia的特别之处并不在于他们是技术专家。他们上的是艺术学校,是设计专家。也许更重要的是,他们真的善于组织人们完成项目。所以你不必研究技术本身,只要你研究能让你舒展筋骨的东西。
What kinds of things are those? Now that is very hard to answer in the general case. History is full of examples of young people who were working on problems that no one else at the time thought were important. In particular that their parents didn’t think were important. On the other hand, history is even fuller of examples of parents that thought their kids were wasting their time and who were right.
那些是什么东西?这在一般情况下很难回答。历史上充满了年轻人的例子,他们正在研究当时没有人认为重要的问题。尤其是他们的父母认为不重要。另一方面,历史上更有很多父母认为自己的孩子在浪费时间,而谁是对的。
How do you know if you’re working on real stuff? I mean when Twitch TV switched from being Justin.tv to Twitch TV and they were going to broadcast people playing video games, I was like, “What?” But it turned out to be a good business. I know how I know real problems are interesting, and I am self-indulgent: I always like working on anything interesting things even if no one cares about them. I find it very hard to make myself work on boring things even if they’re supposed to be important. My life is full of case after case where I worked on things just because I was interested and they turned out to be useful later in some worldly way.
你怎么知道你是不是在做真的东西?我是说当Twitch电视从贾斯汀电视台他们要播放人们玩电子游戏时,我就想,“什么?”但结果却是一笔好生意。我知道我知道真正的问题是有趣的,我是自我放纵的:我总是喜欢做任何有趣的事情,即使没有人关心它们。我发现即使无聊的事情被认为很重要,也很难让自己去做。我的生活充满了一个接一个的例子,我只是因为对事物感兴趣而去做,后来发现它们在某些世俗的方面是有用的。

Y Combinator itself is something I only did because it seemed interesting. I seem to have some internal compass that helps me out. This is for you not me and I don’t know what you have in your heads. Maybe if I think more about it I can come up some heuristics for recognizing genuinely interesting ideas. For now all I can give you is the hopelessly question begging advice. Incidentally this is the actual meaning of the phrase begging the question. The hopelessly question begging advice that if you’re interested in generally interesting problems, gratifying your interest energetically is the best way to prepare yourself for a startup and probably best way to live.
Y组合器本身就是我做的事情,因为它看起来很有趣。我似乎有一些内在的指南针可以帮助我。这是给你的,不是给我的,我不知道你脑子里在想什么。如果我多想一想,也许我能想出一些启发法来识别真正有趣的想法。现在我只能给你一个无可救药的问题求教。顺便说一句,这就是乞求问题这个短语的实际含义。如果你对普遍感兴趣的问题感兴趣,那么积极地满足自己的兴趣是为创业做好准备的最佳方式,或许也是最好的生活方式。
Although I can’t explain in the general case what counts as an interesting problem I can tell you about a large subset of them. If you think of technology as something that’s spreading like a sort of fractal stain, every point on the edge represents an interesting problem. Steam engine not so much maybe you never know. One guaranteed way to turn your mind into the type to start up ideas for them unconsciously. Is to get yourself to the leading edge of some technology. To, as Paul Buchheit put it, “Live in the future.” And when you get there, ideas that seem uncannily prescient to other people will seem obvious to you. You may not realize they’re start up ideas, but you will know they are something that ought to exist.
虽然我不能解释一般情况下什么是有趣的问题,但我可以告诉你其中的一大部分。如果你把科技看作是一种像分形污点一样扩散的东西,那么边缘上的每一点都代表着一个有趣的问题。蒸汽机没那么多,也许你永远不知道。一个可以保证的方法就是把你的思想变成那种无意识地为他们提出想法的人。就是让自己达到某种技术的前沿。正如保罗布希特所说,“活在未来。”当你到达那里,那些对其他人来说似乎有着不可思议的先见之明的想法对你来说将是显而易见的。你可能没有意识到它们是新的想法,但你会知道它们应该存在。
For example back at Harvard in the mid 90s. A fellow grad student of my friends Robert and Trevor wrote his own voice over IP software. It wasn’t meant to be a startup, he never tried to turn it into one. He just wanted to talk to his girlfriend in Taiwan without paying for long distance calls. Since he was an expert on networks, it seemed obvious to him that thing to do was to turn the sound into packets and ship them over the internet for free. Why didn’t everybody do this? They were not good at writing this type of software. He never did anything with this. He never tried to turn this into a startup. That is how the best startups tend to happen.
例如,在90年代中期的哈佛大学,我朋友罗伯特和特雷弗的一个研究生同学写了他自己的IP语音软件。这不是一家初创公司,他从未试图把它变成一家初创公司。他只想和他在台湾的女朋友聊天,不用付长途电话费。由于他是一个网络专家,对他来说很明显的一件事就是把声音转换成数据包,然后通过互联网免费发送出去。为什么不是每个人都这么做?他们不擅长编写这种软件。他从来没有用这个做过任何事。他从未试图把这变成一家初创公司。最好的初创企业往往就是这样发生的。
Strangely enough the optimal thing to do in college if you want to be a successful startup founder is not some sort of new vocational version of college focused on entrepreneurship. It’s the classic version of college is education its own sake. If you want to start your own startup what you should do in college is learn powerful things and if you have genuine intellectual curiosity that’s what you’ll naturally tend to do if you just follow your own inclinations. The component of entrepreneurship, can never quite say that word with a straight face, that really matters is domain expertise. Larry Page is Larry Page because he was an expert on search and the way he became an expert on search was because he was genuinely interested and not because of some ulterior motive. At its best starting a startup is merely a ulterior motive for curiosity and you’ll do it best if you introduce the ulterior motive at the end of the process. So here is ultimate advice for young would be startup founders reduced to two words: just learn.
奇怪的是,如果你想成为一名成功的创业者,在大学里最理想的事情并不是某种专注于创业的新型职业学校。这是大学教育的经典版本。如果你想自己创业,在大学里你应该学些有影响力的东西,如果你有真正的求知欲,如果你只是按照自己的意愿,你自然会倾向于这样做。创业精神的组成部分,永远不能直截了当地说,真正重要的是领域专长。拉里·佩奇之所以成为拉里·佩奇,是因为他是搜索专家,而他成为搜索专家的方式,是因为他真正感兴趣,而不是因为某种别有用心的动机。在最好的情况下,创业只是出于好奇的别有用心的动机,如果你在创业过程的最后引入别有用心的动机,你会做得最好。所以这里有一个对年轻创业者的终极建议,可以简化为两个词:学习。
Alright how much time do we have left? Eighteen minutes for questions good god. Do you guys have the questions?
好吧,我们还有多少时间?18分钟回答问题,天哪。你们有问题吗?
Q: Sure we will start with two questions. How can a nontechnical founder most efficiently contribute to a startup?
Q: 当然,我们先问两个问题。一个非技术型的创始人如何才能最有效地为初创企业做出贡献?

A: If the startup is, if the startup is working in some domain, if it’s not a pure technology startup but is working in some very specific domain, like if it is Uber and the non technical founder was an expert in the limo business then actually then the non technical founder would be doing most of the work. Recruiting drivers and doing whatever else Uber has to do and the technical founder would be just writing the iPhone app which probably less, well iPhone and android app, which is less than half of it. If it’s purely a technical start up the non technical founder does sales and brings coffee and cheeseburgers to the programmer.
A: 如果创业公司是,如果创业公司是在某个领域工作,如果它不是一家纯技术的创业公司,而是在某个非常特定的领域工作,比如如果它是Uber,而非技术创始人是豪华轿车业务的专家,那么实际上,非技术创始人将承担大部分工作。招聘司机,做Uber必须做的任何事情,这位技术创始人只会编写iPhone应用程序,而iPhone和android应用程序可能不到iPhone和android应用程序的一半。如果这纯粹是一个技术性的创业,那么非技术性的创始人负责销售,并为程序员提供咖啡和奶酪汉堡。
Q: Do you see any value in business school for people who want to pursue entrepreneurship?
Q: 你认为商学院对那些想追求创业精神的人有什么价值吗?
A: Basically no, it sounds undiplomatic, but business school was designed to teach people management. Management is a problem that you only have in a startup if you are sufficiently successful. So really what you need to know early on to make a start up successful is developing products. You would be better off going to design school if you would want to go to some sort of school. Although frankly the way to learn how to do it is just to do it. One of the things I got wrong early on is that I advised people who were interested in starting a startup to go work for some other company for a few years before starting their own. Honestly the best way to learn on how to start a startup is just to just try to start it.
A: 基本上没有,这听起来没有外交意义,但商学院的目的是教人的管理。管理是一个问题,只有在你足够成功的情况下,你才能在创业中遇到这个问题。所以,要想让初创企业成功,你最需要知道的是开发产品。如果你想上某种学校,你最好去设计学校。尽管坦率地说,学习如何去做的方法就是去做。我早年犯的一个错误是,我建议那些有兴趣创业的人在创业前先到其他公司工作几年。老实说,学习如何创业的最好方法就是试着去创业。
You may not be successful but you will learn faster if you just do it. Business schools are trying really hard to do this. They were designed to train the officer core of large companies, which is what business seemed to be back when it was a choice to be either the officer core of large companies or Joe’s Shoe Store. Then there was this new thing, Apple, that started as small as Joe’s Shoe Store and turns into this giant mega company but they were not designed for that world they are good at what they’re good at. They should just do that and screw this whole entrepreneurship thing.
你可能不会成功,但只要你去做,你就会学得更快。商学院正努力做到这一点。他们被设计用来训练大公司的核心官员,这是商业似乎回到了一个选择,要么是大公司的核心官员或乔的鞋店。后来出现了一个新事物,苹果,它从乔的鞋店开始,发展成为一个巨大的大公司,但它们不是为那个世界设计的,它们擅长自己擅长的东西。他们应该这么做,把整个创业计划搞砸。
Q: Management is a problem only if you are successful. What about those first two or three people?
Q: 只有你成功了,管理才是问题。前两三个人呢?
A: Ideally you are successful before you even hire two or three people. Ideally you don’t even have two or three people for quite awhile. When you do the first hires in a startup they are almost like founders. They should be motivated by the same things, they can’t be people you have to manage. This is not like the office, these have to be your peers, you shouldn’t have to manage them much.
A: 理想情况下,你甚至在雇佣两三个人之前就已经成功了。理想情况下,你甚至有一段时间没有两三个人。当你在一家初创公司里第一次雇佣员工时,他们几乎就像创始人一样。他们应该被同样的事情所激励,他们不能是你必须管理的人。这不像办公室,这些人必须是你的同龄人,你不应该管理他们太多。
Q: So is it just a big no no, someone has to be managed no way they should be on the founding team.
Q: 所以,这只是一个大的不,不,有人必须管理没有办法,他们应该在创始团队。
A: In the case were you are doing something were you need some super advanced technical thing and there is some boffin that knows this thing and no one else in this world including on how to wipe his mouth. It may be to your advantage to hire said boffin and wipe his mouth for him. As a general rule you want people who are self motivated early on they should just be like founders.
A: 在这种情况下,如果你正在做一些事情,你需要一些超先进的技术,有一些伯菲知道这件事,没有其他人在这个世界上,包括如何擦他的嘴。雇用赛义德·伯芬并替他擦嘴也许对你有利。一般来说,你希望那些早期自我激励的人应该像创始人一样。
Q: Do you think we are currently in a bubble?
Q: 你认为我们现在处于泡沫中吗?
A: I’ll give you two answers to this question. One, ask me questions that are useful to this audience because these people are here to learn how to start startups, and I have more data in my head than anybody else and you’re asking me questions a reporter does because they cannot think of anything interesting to ask. I will answer your question. There is a difference between prices merely being high and a bubble. A bubble is a very specific form of prices being high where people knowingly pay high prices for something in the hope that they will be able to unload it later on some greater fool. That’s what happened in the late 90’s, when VC’s knowingly invested in bullshit startups thinking that they would be able to take those things public and unload them on other retail investors before everything blew up
A: 这个问题我给你两个答案。第一,问我一些对听众有用的问题,因为这些人是来学习如何创业的,我脑子里的数据比任何人都多,你问我记者的问题是因为他们想不出什么有趣的问题。我会回答你的问题。仅仅是高企的价格和泡沫是有区别的。泡沫是一种非常特殊的高价格形式,人们明知故犯地为某件东西付出高价,希望以后能把它卸在某个更大的傻瓜身上。这就是90年代末发生的事情,当时风投有意投资那些狗屁的初创公司,以为他们可以把这些东西公之于众,在一切都破灭之前把它们卖给其他散户投资者
I was there for that at the epicenter of it all. That is not what is happening today. Prices are high, valuations are high, but valuations being high does not mean a bubble. Every commodity has prices that go up and down in some sort of sine wave. Definitely prices are high. We tell people if you raise money, don’t think the next time you raise money it’s going to be so easy, who knows maybe between now and then the Chinese economy will have exploded then there’s a giant disaster recession. Assume the worst. But bubble? No.
我就在这一切的中心。今天不是这样。价格高,估值高,但估值高并不意味着泡沫。每一种商品的价格都会以某种正弦波的形式上下波动。价格肯定很高。我们告诉人们,如果你筹钱,不要以为下次你筹钱会这么容易,谁知道也许从现在到那时,中国经济会爆炸,然后会有一场巨大的灾难性衰退。做最坏的打算。但泡沫呢?不。

Q: I am seeing a trend among young people and successful entrepreneurs where they don’t want to start one great company but twenty. You are starting to see a rise in these labs attempts were they are going to try to launch a whole bunch of stuff, I don’t have any stellar examples yet.
Q: 我在年轻人和成功的企业家中看到了一种趋势,他们不想开一家伟大的公司,只想开二十家。你开始看到这些实验室的尝试在上升,如果他们要尝试推出一大堆的东西,我还没有任何恒星的例子。
A: Do you mean like IDEO?
A: 你是说喜欢IDEO吗?
Q: No, like Idealab, Garrett Camp’s new one…
Q: 不,就像Idealab,加勒特营地的新营地。。。
A: Oh yeah. There’s this new thing were people start labs that are supposed to spin off startups. It might work, that’s how Twitter started. In fact, I meant Idealab, not IDEO, that was another Freudian slip. Twitter was not Twitter at first. Twitter was a side project at a company called Odeo that was supposed to be in the podcasting business, and you like podcasting business, do those words even grammatically go together? The answer turned out to be no as Evan discovered. As a side project they spun off Twitter and boy was that a dog wagging tail, people are starting these things that are supposed to spin off startups, will it work? Quite possibly if the right people do it. You can’t do it though, because you have to do it with your own money.
A: 哦,是的。有一个新的东西,人们开始实验室,应该分拆初创公司。它可能会起作用,Twitter就是这样开始的。事实上,我指的是理想,而不是理想,这是弗洛伊德的另一个失误。Twitter一开始不是Twitter。Twitter是一家名为Odeo的公司的副业,该公司本应从事播客业务,而你喜欢播客业务,这些词在语法上是否一致?埃文发现答案是否定的。作为一个附带项目,他们剥离了Twitter和男孩是一个狗摇尾巴,人们开始这些东西,应该剥离初创公司,它会工作吗?很有可能是正确的人做的。你不能这样做,因为你必须用你自己的钱。
Q: What advice do you have for female co-founders as they are pursuing funding?
Q: 你对女性联合创始人寻求资金有什么建议?
A: It probably is true that women have a harder time raising money. I have noticed this empirically and Jessica is just about to publish a bunch of interviews on female founders and a lot of them said that they thought they had a harder time raising money, too. Remember I said the way to raise money? Make your start up actually do well and that’s just especially true in any case if you miss the ideal target from the VC’s point of view in any respect. The way to solve that problem is make the startup do really well. In fact, there was a point a year or two ago when I tweeted this growth graph of this company and I didn’t say who they were. I knew it would get people to start asking and it was actually a female founded startup that was having trouble raising money, but their growth graph was stupendous. So I tweeted it, knowing all these VC’s would start asking me, “Who is that?” Growth graphs have no gender, so if they see the growth graph first, let them fall in love with that. Do well, which is generally good advice for all startups.
A: 也许是真的,女性在筹款时比较困难。我从经验上注意到了这一点,杰西卡正要发表一系列关于女性创始人的采访,其中很多人说,他们认为自己也很难筹集资金。还记得我说过的筹款方式吗?让你的创业公司做得很好,尤其是在任何情况下,如果你从风投的角度看,在任何方面都没有达到理想的目标。解决这个问题的方法是让初创公司做得很好。事实上,一两年前我在推特上发布了这家公司的增长图,但我没有说他们是谁。我知道这会让人们开始问,事实上,这是一家由女性创办的初创公司,在筹集资金方面遇到了困难,但他们的增长曲线非常惊人。所以我发了微博,知道所有的风投都会问我,“那是谁?“生长曲线图没有性别,所以如果他们先看到生长曲线图,就让他们爱上它。做得好,这通常是对所有初创公司的好建议。
Q: What would you learn in college right now?
Q: 你现在在大学里学什么?
A: Literary theory, no just kidding. Honestly, I think I might try and study physics that’s the thing I feel I missed. For some reason, when I was a kid computers were the thing, maybe they still are. I got very excited learning to write code and you can write real programs in your bedroom. You can’t build real accelerators, well maybe you can. Maybe physics, I noticed I sort of look longingly at physics so maybe. I don’t know if that’s going to be helpful starting a startup and I just told you to follow your own curiosity so who cares if it’s helpful, it’ll turn out to be helpful.
A: 文学理论,不是开玩笑。老实说,我想我可能会努力学习物理这是我错过的东西。出于某种原因,当我还是个孩子的时候,电脑是最流行的东西,也许现在仍然如此。我对学习编写代码感到非常兴奋,你可以在卧室里编写真正的程序。你不能制造真正的加速器,也许你可以。也许是物理,我注意到我有点渴望看物理,所以也许。我不知道这是否有助于创业,我只是告诉你要遵循你自己的好奇心,所以谁在乎这是否有帮助,结果会有帮助。
Q: What are your reoccurring systems in your work and personal life that make you efficient?
Q: 在你的工作和个人生活中,什么样的系统能让你更有效率?
A: Having kids is a good way to be efficient. Because you have no time left so if you want to get anything done, the amount of done you do per time is high. Actually many parents, start up founders who have kids have made that point explicitly. They cause you to focus because you have no choice.
A: 有孩子是提高效率的好方法。因为你没有时间了,所以如果你想做任何事情,你每次做的事情的数量是很高的。事实上,许多有孩子的父母、创业者都明确表示了这一点。他们让你集中注意力是因为你别无选择。

I wouldn’t actually recommend having kids just to make you more focused. You know, I don’t think I am very efficient, I have two ways of getting work done. One is during Y Combinator, the way I worked on Y Combinator is I was forced to. I had to set the application deadline, and then people would apply, and then there were all these applications that I had to respond to by a certain time. So I had to read them and I knew if I read them badly, we would get bad startups so I tried really hard to read them well. So I set up this situation that forced me to work. The other kind of work I do is writing essays. And I do that voluntarily, I am walking down the street and the essay starts writing itself in my head. I either force myself to work on less exciting things; I can’t help working on exciting things. I don’t have any useful techniques for making myself efficient. If you work on things you like, you don’t have to force yourself to be efficient.
我不建议你生孩子只是为了让你更专注。你知道,我觉得我效率不高,我有两种方法来完成工作。一个是在Y Combinator期间,我在Y Combinator上的工作方式是被迫的。我必须设定申请截止日期,然后人们会提出申请,然后所有这些申请我都必须在一定时间内回复。所以我不得不读它们,我知道如果我读得不好,我们会得到不好的创业公司,所以我非常努力地把它们读好。所以我设置了一个迫使我工作的环境。我做的另一种工作是写论文。我是自愿这么做的,我走在街上,这篇文章开始在我的脑海中自我书写。我要么强迫自己去做一些不那么令人兴奋的事情,要么就忍不住去做一些令人兴奋的事情。我没有任何有用的技巧来提高自己的效率。如果你做自己喜欢的事情,你就不必强迫自己有效率。
Q: When is a good time to turn a side project into a startup?
Q: 什么时候是把一个副业项目变成创业项目的好时机?
A: You will know, right. So the question is when you turn a side project into a startup, you will know that it is becoming a real startup when it takes over a alarming large percentage of your life, right. My god I’ve just spent all day working on this thing that’s supposed to be a side project, I am going to fail all of my classes what am I going to do, right. Then maybe it’s turning into a startup.
A: 你会知道的,对吧。所以问题是,当你把一个副业项目变成一个初创企业时,你就会知道,当它接管了你生命中惊人的一大部分时,它正在成为一个真正的初创企业,对吧。我的天哪,我已经花了一整天的时间在这本该是一个副业的事情上,我要让我所有的课都不及格,我该怎么办,对吧。那么也许它会变成一家初创公司。
Q: I know you talked a lot, earlier, about you’ll know when your start up is doing extremely well, but I feel like in a lot of cases it’s a gray line, where you have some users but not explosive growth that is up and to the right, what would you do or what would you recommend in those situations? Considering allocating time and resources, how do you balance?
Q: 我知道你之前谈了很多,你会知道你的初创公司什么时候做得非常好,但我觉得在很多情况下,这是一条灰色的线,你有一些用户,但不是爆炸性的增长,是向上和向上的权利,你会做什么,或你会建议在这些情况下?考虑到时间和资源的分配,你如何平衡?
A: When a start up is growing but not much. Didn’t you tell them they were supposed to read Do Things that Don’t Scale? You sir have not done the readings, you are busted. Because there are four, I wrote a whole essay answered that question and that is to do things that don’t scale. Just go read that, because I can’t remember everything I said. It’s about exactly that problem.
A: 当一家初创企业正在成长但并不多。你没告诉他们他们应该读书,做一些不成比例的事情吗?先生,你还没念完,你就完蛋了。因为有四个,我写了一整篇文章来回答这个问题,那就是做一些不成比例的事情。去读吧,因为我记不清我说的每句话了。正是这个问题。
Q: What kind of startup should not go through incubation, in your opinion?
Q: 你认为什么样的初创企业不应该经过孵化?
A: Definitely any that will fail. Or if you’ll succeed but you’re an intolerable person. That also Sam would probably sooner do without. Short of that, I cannot think of any, because a large percentage, founders are often surprised by how large a percentage of the problems that start ups have are the same regardless of what type of thing they’re working on. And those tend to be kind of problems that YC helps the most not the ones that are domain specific. Can you think of the class of startups? That YC wouldn’t work for? We had fission and fusion startups in the last batch.
A: 任何一个都会失败。或者你会成功,但你是一个无法忍受的人。如果没有这个,山姆可能会更快。除此之外,我想不出任何一个,因为很大一部分创业者经常惊讶于,无论他们从事什么类型的工作,创业者遇到的问题中有很大一部分是相同的。这些问题往往是YC帮助最大的问题,而不是特定领域的问题。你能想到创业公司的类别吗?YC不会为之工作?我们在上一批有裂变和聚变的初创公司。

Q: You mentioned that it’s good advice to learn a lot about something that matters, what are some good strategies to figure out what matters?
Q: 你提到多学习一些重要的东西是一个很好的建议,有什么好的策略来找出重要的东西?
A: If you think of technology as something that’s spreading as a sort of fractal stain. Anything on the edge represents an interesting idea, sounds familiar. Like I said that was the problem, you have correctly identified the thing I didn’t really answer the question were I gave this question begging answer. I said I’m interested in interesting things and you said you were interested in interesting things, work on them and things will work out.
A: 如果你认为科技是一种分形的污点。任何边缘的东西都代表着一个有趣的想法,听起来很熟悉。就像我说的,这就是问题所在,你已经正确地确定了我没有真正回答的问题,我给出了这个问题的乞求答案。我说我对有趣的事情感兴趣,你说你对有趣的事情感兴趣,努力去做,事情就会有结果。
How do you tell what is a real problem? I don’t know, that’s like important enough to write a whole essay about. I don’t know the answer and I probably should write something about that, but I don’t know. I figured out a technique for detecting whether you have a taste for generally interesting problems. Which is whether you find working on boring things intolerable and there are known boring things. Like literary theory and working in middle management in some large company. So if you can tolerate those things, then you must have stupendous self-discipline or you don’t have a taste for genially interesting problems and vice versa.
你怎么知道什么是真正的问题?我不知道,这很重要,足以写一整篇文章。我不知道答案,也许我应该写点什么,但我不知道。我想出了一种技术来检测你是否对一般有趣的问题有兴趣。这就是你是否觉得在无聊的事情上工作是不可忍受的,还有一些已知的无聊的事情。喜欢文学理论,在大公司做中层管理。所以,如果你能容忍这些事情,那么你就必须有惊人的自律,否则你就不会喜欢有趣的问题,反之亦然。
Q: Do you like Snapchat?
Q: 你喜欢Snapchat吗?
A: Snapchat? What do I know about Snapchat? We didn’t fund them. I want another question.
A: Snapchat?我对Snapchat了解多少?我们没有资助他们。我想再问一个问题。
Q: If you hire people you like, you might get a monoculture and how do you deal with the blind spots that arise?
Q: 如果你雇用你喜欢的人,你可能会得到一个单一的文化,你如何处理出现的盲点?
A: Starting a startup is where many things will be going wrong. You can’t expect it to be perfect. The advantage is of hiring people you know and like are far greater than the small disadvantage of having some monoculture. You look at it empirically, at all the most successful startups, someone just hires all their pals out of college.
A: 创业是很多事情都会出错的地方。你不能指望它是完美的。雇用你认识的人的好处远远大于雇用一些单一文化的小缺点。你从经验上看,在所有最成功的初创企业中,有人只是从大学里雇了所有的朋友。
Alright you guys thank you.
好的,谢谢你们。

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