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#84:

🙀A surprising number of you wrote in to my comments last week where I made fun of Adam Neumann. You told me that he wasn't using slang for breakfast but that he was intermittent fasting.

Because so many of you said this, I'm really curious about how far Silicon Valley's eating habits have made it to this newsletters readers.

So I have a quick poll to test this:

  1. What do you know about intermittent fasting?
  2. Bulletproof coffee?
  3. How about keto?
  4. Are you taking nootropics?
ज्ञान
How Data (and Some Breathtaking Soccer) Brought Liverpool to the Cusp of Glory

Really interesting read from the NY Times about how Liverpool's "laptop guys" used data to find inefficiencies in identifying players that other teams were not valuing.

The techniques described are fairly rudimentary but it's beautiful to see them applied to football.

Liverpool has had a fairytale season thanks, in part, to its investments in analytics.

Long read. A broad profile of Virat Kohli beyond just cricket.

🇮🇳🏏Perfect for some pre World Cup excitement.
This week's subject line is from the US-China trade war.

After the US banned its companies from trading with Huawei, China sent a signal.

China's holds the world's dominant rare earth supply, which is used widely in the manufacture of high technology components. This quote is from last week's newspaper stories which showed the Premier at a rare earth mining site:

The newspaper’s commentary included a rare Chinese phrase that means “don’t say I didn’t warn you.” The specific wording was used by the paper in 1962 before China went to war with India, and “those familiar with Chinese diplomatic language know the weight of this phrase,”

🍿🎬[Grabs popcorn and watched the world set on fire]🔥
A pretty-charged article from Fred Wilson (USV) arguing against convertible notes.

Typically thought of founder-friendly, this article argues that stacked convertible notes are kick the can down the road – they can come back with massive repercussions.

Interesting comments section too.

🎮"Professional gaming companions" will watch out for you, help you navigate maps, defeat opponents and give you the best chance at winning.

🎯But, these companions have to make sure you stick with them long-term (CAC is high) so they use interesting tactics to reduce churn and increase LTV:

Lu’a does more than just play games. She also provides a service called “Chatting with you before bedtime.”

– “Chat rooms are essentially like brothels. You go in and state your request, feeling like the king of the world,” she said, “All the girls will then fight over themselves, trying to get you to hire them.”

🇨🇳Oyo claims to be China’s second-biggest budget hotel chain, with more than 400,000 rooms across 290 cities.

For a foreign company to so quickly penetrate the Chinese market has surprised many.

Here, Ritesh Agarwal (CEO) talks about how the company channeled the mindset of a local company to scale so rapidly.

Hint: it has nothing to do with the previous article…😏
😱Disney is all set to launch a Netflix competitor. And it's pulling all its content off Netflix.

Netflix is spending massively on content and carries $10.4bn in debt.

Disney owns decades of television and blockbusters – not to mention Marvel, Pixar Animations, Star Wars, ESPN, and National Geographic.

🥺This is going to be a big deal.
When you’re in the dentist’s chair, the power imbalance between practitioner and patient becomes palpable.

A masked figure looms over your recumbent body, wielding power tools and sharp metal instruments[…].

The experience simultaneously invokes physical danger, emotional vulnerability, and mental limpness.
One for the road
This video shows how Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) can easily create models (or brand mascots).

For e-commerce companies, this removes a ton of friction – AI can be used to quickly put massive product catalogues onto human-looking models.

“If I had to live my life again, I'd make the same mistakes, only sooner”
— Tallulah Bankhead

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