jm + y-combinator   2

Paul Graham and the Manic Pixie Dream Hacker
Under Graham’s influence, Mark [Zuckerberg], like many in Silicon Valley, subscribes to the Manic Pixie Dream Hacker ideal, making self-started teenage hackers Facebook’s most desired recruiting targets, not even so much for their coding ability as their ability to serve as the faces of hacking culture. “Culture fit”, in this sense, is one’s ability to conform to the Valley’s boyish hacker fantasy, which is easier, obviously, the closer you are to a teenage boy.

Like the Manic Pixie Dream Girl’s role of existing to serve the male film protagonist’s personal growth, the Manic Pixie Dream Hacker’s job is to embody the dream hacker role while growing the VC’s portfolio. This is why the dream hacker never ages, never visibly develops interests beyond hardware and code, and doesn’t question why nearly all the other people receiving funding look like him. Like the actress playing the pixie dream girl, the pixie dream boy isn’t being paid to question the role for which he has been cast.

In this way, for all his supposed “disruptiveness”, the hacker pixie actually does exactly what he is told: to embody, while he can, the ideal hacker, until he is no longer young, mono-focused, and boyish-seeming enough to qualify for the role (at that point, vested equity may allow him to retire). And like in Hollywood, VCs will have already recruited newer, younger ones to play him.
hackers  manic-pixie-dream-girl  culture-fit  silicon-valley  mark-zuckerberg  paul-graham  y-combinator  vc  work  investment  technology  recruitment  facebook  ageism  equality  sexism 
january 2014 by jm
Y Combinator Funding Application for Dropbox
having worked on a product which was tangentially a Dropbox competitor, this is fascinating. they have good tech and great smarts, and of course a great foundation in S3
dropbox  business  ideas  y-combinator  products  design  apps  from delicious
january 2011 by jm

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