Issue 1 - News & Thoughts from Sanjay

March 18, 2020

Welcome to the first issue of my new weekly(ish) email newsletter. I’m going to cover articles I’ve read and things I’m thinking about. Also included is a recommendation at the end of this email. I was going to send this to you a few days ago but I got swamped with all of the pandemic/quarantine issues that have been going on. I hope each of you and your families is safe and healthy. Please enjoy this first newsletter and I’ll try to minimize the coronavirus talk in the future since we’re all getting way too much about that in the news as is. Enjoy!

Your friend,

Sanjay


Content From Sanjay

This week I’ve only got one thing for you - the latest episode of Tech Talk Y’all. You really should subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcast app (or Spotify!).


Articles I’ve Read

Business & Startups

  • Coronavirus is changing how big tech is going to handle hourly worker wages. I think we need to rethink the application and use of sick leave across the board. Too often I’ve worked with people who come in knowing that they are sick and refuse to go home. (link)

  • Coronavirus may be responsible for killing off bandwidth data caps and that’s a good thing. (link)

  • Sonos took a questionable approach to letting users launch a “recycle” mode on their products to get a discount on buying new Sonos gear. But selecting this option launched a 21 day countdown (which you couldn’t cancel) to the device bricking itself and then not ever working again. After a groundswell of complaints (I was also thinking about never buying another Sonos again) they’ve gone back on this decision. Users can still get a discount but the devices won’t brick themselves. (link)

  • After making a $21 million investment, Sequoia realizes that their investment in Finix conflicts with their very large investment n Stripe. Instead of asking for their money back, they returned their stock and resigned from the board. They gave the company the $21 million with nothing in return. Basically, they did the right thing. This article perplexes me because instead of applauding them for treating a founder right (especially a founder who is not one of their founders now), the author questions why they didn’t do something less than doing right by the founder. Startups are hard but investors like this make doing a startup a little easier. Bravo Sequoia! (link)

International Affairs

  • North Korea faces some significant challenges if Coronavirus takes hold in the country.  If the government collapses, what might happen next? (link)

  • Coronavirus may not just impact travel, it could have a significant impact on pharmaceutical drugs available in the United States. (link)

Science

  • Consuming caffeine may help you solve problems but it won't help you be creative. (link)

  • Washing your hands with soap - regardless of the type: bar or liquid - is the best defense against disease. There is no such thing as a “dirty” bar of soap apparently. Soap is self-cleaning like how Chandler explained it in “Friends”. (link)

Technology

  • Goodyear is working on a tire that you (almost) never have to replace. Better for the environment and your wallet. Unfortunately it's still a long ways off. (link)


Recommendation

I started listening to the band Surfaces a few months ago. I really dig their message and style which is focused on delivering a positive, uplifting message. As of late they have blown up because they were featured in a TikTok dance by popular influencer Charli D’Amelio (you may know the song/dance Renegade which she popularized but did not create). The song in the TikTok, “Sunday Best”, is one of their best (hah!) songs (although the TikTok version has been remixed and not nearly as good as the original IMO) but they’ve got a number of others with a great message. They also dropped a new album and were recently on Late Night with Seth Meyers. Check them out.

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