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  • i don't know i i think it's always hard to know

  • why you're drawn to a particular thing i think part of it is if you have a

  • facility with that thing and of course it's satisfying to do it and so in the

  • way that self reinforcing

  • uh... and i and and and certainly i always

  • had a facility with computers i always got along well with them and

  • uh... and it was it was they're such extraordinary towards them and you can

  • you can't teach them to do things in the mid that connection to do them i mean

  • it's a kind of a an incredible tool that we've built here in the twentieth

  • century

  • that was they uh... uh... a lot of for that really did start a fourth grade

  • uh... and then when i look but i got to high school uh... i think when i was in

  • eleventh grade i got an apple to plots

  • and uh... india continued for computers and

  • for the time i got

  • prints and i was

  • uh... you know taken all the computer classes and actually not just learning

  • how to act but learning about algorithms and and you know some of the mathematics

  • behind computer science

  • and it's fascinating and it's really

  • of very involving and fun subject

  • site twenty with the idea i i have uh... of starting a company and and uh...

  • uh... even

  • talk to couple friends about starting a company and

  • ultimately decided

  • it would be smarter

  • to weight and learn a little bit more

  • business and the way the world works unit one of the things that it's

  • very hard to believe when you're

  • twenty two or twenty three-years-old is that you don't already know everything

  • cut

  • it turns out i mean

  • uh... as i suspected

  • uh... you know

  • people were more and more as they get older that you seem to work mission to

  • realize that you know lesson last every year that goes back in a way imagine

  • that by the time im

  • you know seventy l realize i did not fit

  • uh...

  • so that was uh... i a very good decision to not do that i went to work for

  • start-up company uh... button unit uh... one in new york city that was building a

  • network

  • uh... for helping brokerage firms clear

  • uh... trades with the kind of an obscure thing it's every interesting to go into

  • but

  • used my technical skills and it was very fun work and i love the people i was

  • working with

  • and then

  • uh... that sort of

  • from then on i started working stripped intersection of computers in finance

  • uh... and stayed on wall street for a long time also only works for a company

  • that um... to distinguish quantitative hedge fund treating i was we were

  • we will need to sweep program the computers and the computers made stock

  • trades

  • uh... and that was very interesting too

  • uh... and

  • that was where i was working when i uh... when i came across the fact that

  • the web

  • was growing at twenty three hundred percent a year and that's what led to

  • the the forming of amazon dot co

  • so you want to start a company balked the first thing you do

  • is used to write a business plan

  • so i did that i wrote about it

  • three page business wrote a first draft factor for the first draft of the car

  • trip

  • uh... from you know

  • from from the east coast to the west coast

  • and that was

  • uh... that is very helpful in the business plan what survived its first

  • encounters with reality unto always be different the reality will never be the

  • plan

  • the discipline that

  • of writing the plant forces you to think through

  • some of the issues and to get her mentally comfortable in the space

  • miniature research understand

  • you know to push on this now this will move over here and so on

  • so that's the first step

  • wants you

  • are looking at the bars in a realistic way it's very important for cartridge to

  • be realistic and so if you believe

  • on that first day while you're right in the business plan

  • but there's a seventy percent chance that the whole thing will fail you know

  • e

  • that kind of relieves the pressure of of self-doubt i mean this early

  • i don't have any doubt about whether we're gonna feel that's the likely

  • outcome

  • no

  • and and that just isn't to pretend that it's not will lead you to do strange in

  • you know

  • uh... unnatural things

  • so week uh... uh... into edmund in what you do with those early investment

  • dollars you know so if you have three hundred thousand dollars when you have a

  • million dollars

  • what you do with that early precious capital resources if you go about

  • systematically trying to eliminate risk

  • c pick whatever the you know you think the biggest problems and try to

  • eliminate the more time

  • that's uh... that's how small companies get a little bit bigger than a little

  • bit bigger little bit bigger

  • finally

  • at a certain stage

  • you reach a transition where u

  • have with the company

  • has more control over its future ghastly

  • the first

  • through initial start-up capital for amazon dot com came primarily from my

  • parents and they invested

  • a large fraction

  • of their life savings uh... in

  • what became amazon dot com

  • and yup that is a

  • uh...

  • uh... was a very

  • uh... bolden trusting thing for them to do because they didn't

  • and my dad's first question what's what's the inner

  • so this he wasn't making abet on this company or this

  • concept

  • he was making a bet on his son

  • as well as my mother

  • so

  • uh... and and i told them that i thought there was a seventy percent chance that

  • they would lose

  • their whole investment which was a few hundred thousand dollars

  • and

  • uh... and they did anyway and uh... and and and you know and i i thought i was

  • given myself triple the normal arts because you know

  • it's really hard to look at the odds of a startup companies succeeding at all

  • it's only about ten percent here i would give myself a thirty percent chance

  • i uh...

  • went to my

  • boss and said to him

  • you know i'm gonna go do this crazy thing

  • and i'm gonna start this

  • and this company selling books online

  • and missus supply or even talking to about

  • uh... in this report general context but then he said let's go on a walker will

  • work to our walk in central park in new york city

  • and the conclusion of that was this he said you know this actually sounds like

  • a really good idea

  • but it sounds like it would be a better idea for somebody

  • who didn't already have a good job no

  • uh... and he convinced me to think about it for forty eight hours before making a

  • final decision and so

  • i would away in and been was tried friend right

  • framework

  • in which to make that kind of

  • big decision and

  • you know i already talked to my wife about this and she was very supportive

  • in said look you know

  • uh... you can count me in one hundred percent

  • uh... whatever you want to do it's true she had married this kind of univ

  • really stable guy

  • stable career path and now he wanted to go do this crazy thing but she was a

  • hundred percent support it

  • so it really was a decision that i had to make for myself

  • the in the framework i found which made the decision incredibly easy

  • was

  • uh... what what i call the literally and heard would call regret minimisation

  • framework

  • so i wanted to project myself for decades eighty

  • it's okay now i'm looking back on my life

  • i want to have minimize the number of regrets i have

  • at what i knew that when i was eighty i was not going to regret having

  • tried this i was not gonna regret

  • wanted eunice trying to protest the paid in this thing called the internet but i

  • thought was gonna be a really big deal and identify

  • i wouldn't regret that

  • but i knew the one thing i have my could correct

  • ever having try

  • and i knew that that would harm me

  • everyday

  • uh... and

  • so when i thought about it that way it was an incredibly easy decision

  • uh... and i think that's a very good

  • it's if you can project yourself out

  • to a j_d_ its roots think what life think at that time

  • it sure way from some of the daily

  • pieces of confusion you know left

  • uh... this wall street firm in the middle of the year when you do that you

  • walk away from your annual bonus that's the kind of thing

  • in the short term can confuse you

  • but if you think about

  • the long term

  • uh... then you can

  • really make good wife decisions that you won't regret later

  • i remember in uh... force grade we had this

  • wonderful

  • contest which uh... was

  • uh... the people in the class will hurt me there are some prize everett was

  • whoever convert read the most newberry award winners in the year

  • uh... and i read through it in in the winning you know i think i read like

  • thirty newberry award winners that your but somebody else read more

  • no

  • and that and that you know that stand out there it's the old classic that i

  • think

  • so many people have read and write a wrinkle in time and i just remember

  • loving

  • uh... loving that book uh...

  • uh... intern later i was always a big fan of science fiction

  • even from

  • when i was innum in elementary school

  • reading various things and uh... world of course the hob dayton

  • and uh... and tokens trilogy that follows on from that in

  • this little taro

  • uh... where my uh... grandfather lived uh... and the summer's where i spent my

  • time this summer

  • uh... had eight unit tiny little new andrew carnegie style library that work

  • all the books have been donated for the local citizens

  • and uh... i found in this is a very small libros more than the room or

  • setting in now

  • and it had uh... the

  • but it had an extensive sites fiction collection is just so happened one of

  • the residents of the street dousing person town

  • besides fiction friend tony did their whole collection

  • and that started love affair for me with you know people like

  • highland and

  • as a marvin you know all of the the well-known science-fiction authors that

  • persist to this day

  • if you look over

  • uh... uh... over long periods of time to look over hundreds of years

  • and look at the

  • every sort of life cycle of a new technology what you find

  • it's getting compressed and compressing compressor the rate of change is getting

  • faster and faster

  • every decade that goes by

  • they're sure more important discoveries per unit time than there were in the

  • previous decade

  • uh... and get a lot of these discoveries

  • tend to

  • uh... uh... you know have

  • to uses i mean technologies singer unit tend to be agnostic with with respect

  • whether they could be used for good

  • were used for evil

  • and

  • i think that you know over the next fifty years

  • uh... we're gonna

  • face a lot of free tough decisions

  • as a society

  • and in and how we make sure

  • that we are harnessing

  • those technologies

  • for good purposes

  • stress primarily comes

  • from not taking action

  • over something that you can have some control over