inspiration & news

In the News 11.05.15 : Today’s Articles of Interest from around the Internets





1. Tomorrow’s Advance Man

“If you have a crackerjack idea, one of your stops on Sand Hill Road will be Andreessen Horowitz, often referred to by its alphanumeric URL, a16z. (There are sixteen letters between the “a” in Andreessen and the “z” in Horowitz.) Since the firm was launched, six years ago, it has vaulted into the top echelon of venture concerns. Competing V.C.s, disturbed by its speed and its power and the lavish prices it paid for deals, gave it another nickname: AHo. Each year, three thousand startups approach a16z with a “warm intro” from someone the firm knows. A16z invests in fifteen. Of those, at least ten will fold, three or four will prosper, and one might soar to be worth more than a billion dollars—a “unicorn,” in the local parlance. With great luck, once a decade that unicorn will become a Google or a Facebook and return the V.C.’s money a thousand times over: the storied 1,000x. There are eight hundred and three V.C. firms in the U.S., and last year they spent forty-eight billion dollars chasing that dream.”

Read the rest of this article at The New Yorker





2. Chicago artist Theaster Gates: ‘I’m hoping Swiss bankers will bail out my flooded South Side bank in the name of art’

“The 2008 sub-prime mortgage crash looked a lot like the apocalyptic end of something in many American cities, but to Theaster Gates it was a new beginning. Gates, these days director of arts and public life at the University of Chicago, whom ArtReview likes to call ‘the poster boy for socially engaged art’, was then a somewhat overlooked potter and frustrated town planner. He used the opportunity afforded by the collapse of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to buy a bungalow in the derelict South Side of Chicago for $16,000, then about as much as he could afford.”

Read the rest of this article at the guardian





3. A League of His Own

“It can be hard to find the perfect way to describe Joseph “Sepp” Blatter, the head of FIFA. The Daily Mail has called him a “smug, self-righteous Zurich gnome.” The Guardian has called him “the most successful non-homicidal dictator of the past century.” In April, at the annual meeting of FIFA’s North and Central American representatives, Osiris Guzman, president of Dominican Republic soccer, goes in another direction, comparing Blatter to Jesus Christ, Nelson Mandela, and Winston Churchill. “Why is he different from these other men?” demands Guzman, whom FIFA banned from soccer for 30 days in a 2011 vote-­buying scandal. For good measure, he adds Moses, Martin Luther King Jr., and Abraham Lincoln.”

Read the rest of this article at Bloomberg Business





4. Three days in Beijing with three of the world’s most famous dissidents

“It’s a Thursday morning in Beijing, and the world’s most famous living artist, Ai Weiwei, is sitting with one of the world’s most controversial technologists, Jacob Appelbaum, in the second-floor lobby of the East Hotel. Appelbaum is drinking a latte and eating a cherry danish with a fork. Ai is watching him.
Appelbaum, a Wikileaks collaborator who helped develop the anonymous web browser Tor, is wearing dark, thick-framed glasses and a black shirt that reads “Fuck the NSA.” Ai takes out his iPhone, places it under the table for a better angle, snaps a photo of Appelbaum’s shirt, and uploads it to Instagram. Within a few minutes, the photo has garnered 500 likes from Ai’s 100,000 followers.”

Read the rest of this article at Fusion





5. The Fall of the Cherry King

“At 57, Mr. Mondella seemed to have stepped out of an old Brooklyn movie, a tall, gravel-voiced, hard-bargaining man who charmed women, impressed men and was said to shoulder all the burdens of his family and of many of his employees, too. He would do almost anything for the people he cared about, his friends said. He killed himself, some of those closest to him say, because he couldn’t face his family, or because he wanted to spare them.”

Read the rest of this article at The New York Times



P.S. previous articles & more by P.F.M.



[images: by @laterafternoon]