💠 Sunday Scaries (12/06/20)

Hi everyone,

Writing to you from Mammoth Lakes, CA. This weekend I learned about local legend Dave McCoy, a skier and businessman who founded the Mammoth Ski resort and lodge. Dave passed away this year at the age of 105, but he left behind an incredible legacy.

Dave opened his first slope with a rope and pulley adapted from a Model A Ford truck. He went to the bank for an $85 dollar loan to establish a more permanent system, but was denied. Roma, the bank secretary, urged management to approve the loan (which they did upon further consideration). Dave married Roma a few years later and founded Mammoth Mountain in 1942.


In This Week’s Edition:

AlphaFold @ CASP13: What just happened?

Big news this week: a Grand Challenge in science was solved. This article was originally published in 2018 after DeepMind (the team behind the technology) revealed their neural network called AlphaFold. Since then, AlphaFold has gone on to solve the problem known as “protein folding”, an incredibly important development for how we model the behavior of organic molecules.

Given the news, this article is a rare look at what a breakthrough looks like before it’s fully developed.

Lindy score: 2040


How To Build The Next Silicon Valley

This week, a Tweet from the Mayor of Miami went viral on Twitter:

Compare this response to the treatment the technology industry has been receiving in California:

I’ll refrain from commenting on the specifics here, but I’d like to point readers to the linked article, written by Marc Andressen in 2014. It’s titled Turn Detroit into Drone Valley and it focuses on the deregulation of specific industries to encourage innovation.

Instead of thinking of Silicon Valley as a single place, it’s easier to think of it as a combination of factors that allowed information technology to flourish.

The entire article is worth a read, and if you’re looking for more on this topic I recommend checking out this video from Balaji Srinivasan.

Lindy score: 2026


Where Are The Juntos?

One of Benjamin Franklin’s most underrated contributions to American society was the Junto: a private club with the purpose of mutual improvement among its members.

I’ve been thinking about the modern equivalent of a Junto and what it would look like. I suspect that a group like Spacepost is a piece of the puzzle.

Franklin was a prolific inventor, but not all of his ideas became as popular as the lightning rod.

Lindy score: 2200


Thanks for reading,

Phil

Sunday Scaries is a newsletter that focuses on content that has stood the test of time. Because of The Lindy Effect, the topics covered will still be relevant in the future. You can subscribe by clicking the link below. 👇