Tracking the Trends: AI, WebRTC, Crypto, and Full Stack Startups

a16z
|

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Today's episode is a conversation about four big trends in the tech world. Any one of these trends would be notable on its own, but we cover all four in this hallway style chat as a sixteen z general partner Chris and talks with Sept. Campfire professor of media, arts, and sciences at MIT, and now co founder of cryptocurrency platforms, Selo and Eli Gill an investor in the CO founder of Health Technology, company color genomics, and formerly at twitter and Google. This is a wide ranging survey of some of the major shifts in technology right now but it's really a Meta story of how innovation happens, which is most definitely not in a straight line. So here, the translate cover Crypto, of course, a and machine learning including GP three. You can also listen to our explainer episode on what type and what's real there on our show sixteen minutes full stack startups, which Chris I wrote about in two thousand, Fourteen and collaborative web collaborative enterprise social including RTC or real time communication within the browser, which is where the conversation begins the first voice. You'll hear his Chris followed by talking about Web RTC and then set wants the conversation turns to Crypto. So it's a lot I. You and I have been talking about this in a negative excited about it. This kind of this feeling that there's a new stack of web infrastructure things like video audio. Collaborative Video Nadia rather who's having infrastructure now that it works in a way that it hadn't in the past and that's a mocking a whole new way of interesting applications people are always looking for the next platform and what the next big platform shift is and I think I kind of May have snuck up on all of us in the form of Web RTC Web Gio and then related. API. Companies providing sound or other things that have been built on top of by. Many other companies and I think the shifted substantiate itself in two different ways and almost call it the collaborative web and then separately the collaborative enterprise and if you look back ten years, people kept talking about during the first social way everybody talking about how there's going to be a social enterprise and how every SASS product was going to be more social and collaborative in that largely failed and it feels like that shift is finally happening in part due to things like what? You see fig for example, is the first really strong example of a Web jail enabled application along you to collaborate in real time with other people. In parallel with RTC is really allowing for really interesting concurrent sessions around video and tell you starting to see that in terms of a lot of products being built around virtual office rooms, virtual conference rooms, and I really do think this is the moment where collaboration is finally being built into the enterprise world and enterprise products, and then in parallel Web Jalen. Web RTC really seem to be enabling really interesting social experiments right now in terms of new social products, you have really amazing video and audio quality. So the time lag has gone who can do things that clubhouse. There's lots of interesting video experimentation. So you can see almost like degraded forms of your other things happening in browser or so I think now is a really exciting time of innovation around this new webstock. Point sneaking up on us, we've obviously had the ability to have conference calls group audio for decades. Right. But like a club house fact that there's so low latency and you've got like the visual representation of the room means that to me it's like if you remember the old days in the conference calls, Hey, always have people talking over each other partly because of whatever thrown is remarkable how the conversation switches from person to person. The latency I mean we both houses. This was zoom right like the fact that he doesn't stutter. The fact that very rarely does. It somehow Kinda Crossover. This point of good enough where finally hitting the point our in terms of video quality and the ability to stream concurrently across multiple users in terms of audio quality were hitting that point where the web infrastructure is really supporting the ability to have extra latency. A new platform excited at the examples. But when you say platform you that means you did they'll be thousands of examples. Are you think it's GonNa? Be a whole new wave that goes? By ten years. I think like any a quote unquote platform they're going to be a handful of things that really matter. That will really be the important things on it, and then a lot of things will be experiments that fail or don't work and I don't know ten years from now, what's going to be the main setup applications? I just think it is a shift that enables a bunch of applications to be built particularly the social or collaborative enterprise. One example that I think is worth noting in terms of what's coming due to see is it's quite possible that if you. Look at virtual reality or Vr the predominant use case in the near term mackey shift to the Rouser, and so I think right now in order to experience the are you need a headset you need some cases client software etcetera in. So there's more obstacles in hurdles to be able to participate and I think one of the things I found really interesting about where to seeing what jail is the ability to suddenly create like experiences where you just drop it. Can show up and so the big question in my mind is is oculus almost like the desktop computer versus mobile devices where the desktop really helps you do powerful tests, but you can do a lot on your phone and it's sort of the mainstream use case for most of the Internet today so I think that's another thing that we'll see if it happens or doesn't happen over the next decade, but that may be one interesting long-term trend to watch relative to web RTC. In. Jail. crypto rolling all involved in this allowed, you invest in Crypto Zapped new coupons company Selo in Crypto Abbasi's been my time besting. tells. A little about why you're excited about it in the second ring on. So I'll start off with general principle that I think is true for all of the technologies that we're talking about. There are certain class of technologies that increase the expressive range of a certain medium and when you increase the expressive range of a medium. Things pop up that were not possible before because you now are playing in the new design space. The historical example that I always love to point to is in the eighteen hundreds. The invention of the metal feral in painting is the little piece between the paintbrush and the paintbrush handle and collapsible easel. Those two things together allowed people to a brave paintings outside and be start to paint with a new breastroke that them too quickly DAB, paint onto the canvas in those two. Ended up, giving rise to form of painting that we now know as impressionism, and still it's interesting to think about impressionism was a result of technological advances painting and you see that same thing with the web and the Internet in general there were technological advances in the medium of text and so all of a sudden people could send texts more quickly anybody could be a broadcaster you start putting texts together with code to create different things in that vastly increased the expressive range of texts in a way that led to all of these things that you could not predict in advance. So for example, in ninety, four, ninety, five, when the web was starting to become popular, one could not imagine that. Will one day I'll be able to press the button and order my groceries on this and have my groceries come to me. You know and so I think those are really interesting from A. Technological point of view. Why I'm excited about Crypto is that Crypto does this for money? It increases the expressive range of the technology that we know is money, and that I think we'll follow very similar to the Internet you know at the beginning of the Internet. You saw allow people to pass messages. More quickly to one another across the distance in a way that was just qualitatively different than facts, and that is the first thing that you started seeing with Crypto it has direct implications to things like remittances or making the UNE banked. But then on top of that, the second implication of the web was that anybody could become a broadcaster with youtube anybody could have their own TV station and in the context of Crypto, you have the same democratization in financial services. So you see this kind of rise in decentralized finance open finance. And third is most exciting as it allows money to become programmable in the same way that the Internet allow text to become programmable and that I think, I mean we're seeing some early things today but that's I think the aspect that we're still the earliest and it has the most legs and is the most powerful and the most difficult to predict the stage. Since we're in such an early phase

Coming up next