Entries by Nate

2014 Reading List

I tackled 59 books this year, just over one a week. The themes included science fiction, which I really enjoyed, dog training (we adopted two dogs), and a lot of Stoicism and philosophy. I got through Buckminster Fuller, Jane Jacobs, and Freeman Dyson on the non-fiction side and some great novels, including Lolita, The Name of […]

An Incubator for Glass #innovation

Over the weekend, I finished How We Got to Now, the new book by Steven Johnson. The book interweaves technology and history and explores how they interact and shape each other. Specifically, it details the history of the now everyday—glass, cold, sound, clean, time, and light. PBS has also launched a mini-series with an episode […]

NYT: Venture Capitalists Return to Backing Science Start-ups #energy #venture

It’s good to see capital coming back into energy and industrials. This time around, the money is smarter—focusing on smaller pilot projects, leveraging software, and partnering strategics with different return expectations: After years of shying away from science, engineering and clean-technology start-ups, investors are beginning to take an interest in them again, raising hopes among […]

Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think

ISIS! Ebola! Fear sells—it’s an evolutionary selection bias we all have and probably for good reason—better to be safe and all. But the fact is that the world is safer and more prosperous today than it has ever been. Violence per capita is falling, income per capita is on the rise globally. In 10 years, […]

Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary @ArtInstituteChi

The exhibit Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary at the Art Institute of Chicago ends October 13. I’m going to miss the Unthink posters that have been up around the city all summer. Like his paintings, the posters take you out of the everyday by presenting ordinary objects in strange situations or with unexpected text, causing you to pause and […]

It’s Not Bits vs. Atoms

We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters. —Peter Thiel Peter Thiel was recently quoted as saying you can either invest in bits or atoms, his opinion being that there are too many bits companies right now (WhatsApp, SnapChat, etc.) and not enough atoms companies (Tesla, SpaceX). Generally speaking, I would agree—a lot of […]