Insights from drinks with Charles Wu

On pivotal

Pivotal was able to grow by setting up a process that allows them to build out simple CRUD app using second tier software developers.

Their pair programming practice allowed them the ability to use relatively cheaper software developers to build out these simple projects while buffering them against the relatively high churn rate.

Their partnership with Code camps like hacker reactor has allowed access to a constantly supply of relatively cheaper labor.

Their standardization of the technology stack to just Rails and Java has further facilitated the interchangeability of developers across projects.

To ensure no wenches gets thrown into the process pipeline, they primarily target companies with legacy systems that need migration away from.

They choose to avoid startups solving technical problems that require deep domain expertise. Supporting Twilio requirements was a real challenge to their process.

On Twitter

Most of the progress by Twitter recently has been stuff that they have talked about before Jack Dorsey’s return as CEO.

The main road block to was management’s inability to make a decision to execute driven mainly about insecurity over potential impact to users.

On Facebook

Was highly stressful. Put on a lot of weight during tenure. Work life balance was a challenge

On having run rate

Reid Hoffman mentioned when you have a long run rate and are able to stay in the game, it’s lije playing baseball without the fear of ever striking out. You just have to wait for the home run.

On shares

Employees have lock in period after a company goes IPI before they can sell off their shares. It’s important to define clearly your exit and not get too greedy

On being Asian in this time and age

Crazy Rich Asian has really help set the trend and this demand for Asian Actors for the next few years. If you are tall, Asian and good looking you have basically cornered the market at this point. Why not give it a shot and go do some casting in the Bay Area?

By the way do something about that domain you own called

On health and use psychology

Most health issues can be attributed to bad habits like smoking, drinking and fast food. So long as you have a habit of working out and eating healthy it is possible to stave off 90% of health issues.

The trip with Health is to capitalize on the reciprocal bias that humans have. Humans have an inability to differentiate at an emotional level between other humans and things that does favor for them. A robot that pretends to be human that nags them to perform behavior beneficial for their health falls into that category

Hospitals get fined when heart patients return to the hospital within a specific period of time after being released. As such they utilize call centers to help remind recently discharged patients to perform healthy behaviors that will reduce the likelihood of their return.


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