I want to thank several individuals at a16z for their invaluable inputs and support: Marc Andreessen, Chris Dixon, and Balaji Srinivasan provided critical ideas throughout the research. Morgan Beller on Frank Chen’s research team helped me dig up answers to some empirical questions. Margit Wennmachers and Sonal Chokshi provided early feedback to help make the ideas more accessible to a general audience than they would otherwise have been.
Besides a16z, the folks at Exosphe.re, Skinner Layne in particular, provided an invaluable opportunity for me to pilot test the Season 1 workshop, as part of their 2015 Hydra II startup bootcamp in Chile.
Several others contributed crucial insights and ideas to these essays.
On the technology front, Kartik Agaram, Kyle Matthews, Ganesh Varadarajan, Navin Kabra, Daniel Lemire, Abe Stanway, Brandon Hudgeons, Keith Adams, Senthil Gandhi, Rif Saurus and Carlos Bueno helped me develop a much stronger appreciation for the nature of modern software development processes and advanced topics such as machine learning. Sam Penrose, Mike Travers and Jordan Peacock helped me develop a nuanced understanding of the history of computing and the the story of the tension between purist and pragmatic approaches. My consulting work with AMD, in particular with Jim Keller and Raja Koduri, helped me develop a ring-side appreciation of semiconductor technologies underlying the software revolution.
On the sociocultural front, Patrick Vlaskovits helped me understand the nuances of software-inspired ideas like lean startups and growth hacking. Emilia Lahti introduced me to the useful Finnish concept of sisu. Nick Pinkston, David Lang and Renee DiResta helped me understand how software is eating hardware and manufacturing through the Maker movement. Jane Huang helped out with some background research on the work of Bruno Latour.
A big part of Season 1 is an examination of basic economic arguments. During the course of writing these parts, Ilia Gimelfarb, Rif Saurus, David Chudzicki, Sam Bhagwat and Keith Adams helped me become a great deal more economically literate, with a much clearer appreciation for how market mechanisms work to solve problems.
My wife, Meeyong Rao, patiently supported me through the bootstrapping of yet another of my nutty experiments with the Internet.
And finally, I owe a great deal to the hundreds of interactions with frontline participants in the software revolution on Twitter, Facebook and my blog. Without the continuous immersion in the live culture of practice through social media, a great many things would have remained obscure to me.