March 11, 2023

163 Pablos Holman: Lessons from Working with Tech Titans and Mad Scientists

163 Pablos Holman: Lessons from Working with Tech Titans and Mad Scientists

My next guest is Pablos Holman, a world-renowned hacker, inventor, and technology futurist with a unique ability to distill complex technology into practical tools.

His past projects include building spaceships at Blue Origin with Jeff Bezos, working on an impact invention effort to eradicate malaria with Bill Gates, and founding Intellectual Ventures Lab for Nathan Myhrvold to support a wide range of invention projects, such as a brain surgery tool, a machine to suppress hurricanes, a nuclear reactor powered by nuclear waste, and a machine that can shoot mosquitoes out of the sky with lasers. With over 70 patents, Pablos is a true innovator.

Pablos is a sought-after speaker and has been invited to conferences around the world to share his expertise on innovation, invention, hacking, technology, and cybersecurity. He has spoken at prestigious events such as Stanford, the United Nations, the World Economic Forum at Davos, the Microsoft CEO Summit, The FORTUNE CEO Summit, the CIA, Google Zeitgeist, and The Milken Global Conference. His TED Talks have amassed over 30 million views.

Currently, Pablos serves as the Managing Director at Deep Future, where he backs mad scientists, rogue inventors, crazy hackers, and maverick entrepreneurs in implementing science fiction, solving big problems, and helping our species become better ancestors.

We talked about:

  • 3:34: Learn how to evaluate ideas as an innovator, and how to determine which ones are worth pursuing.
  • 4:04: Discover why innovation and invention could be a competitive team sport
  • 6:46: Hear about the only rule that exists amongst these crazy inventors
  • 23:20: Learn about the different color hats technique and how it can be used to approach problem-solving from different perspectives.
  • 25:16: Understand the barriers to scaling deep tech invention and how to overcome them.
  • 38:47: Discover the number one thing required to make an innovation ecosystem work and how it relates to supporting a culture of innovation.
  • 42:39: Find out why Pablos is so passionate about taking care of 8 billion people and how this drives his work as an innovator.
  • 45:51: Learn about the concept of becoming better ancestors and how it relates to creating a better future for humanity.
  • 50:18: Hear about Pablos's technique for evaluating life decisions and opportunities as an innovator.
  • 56:15: Understand Maslow's hierarchy of needs and how it relates to the quantity of life vs. quality of life problems.
  • 68:58: Discover the primary responsibility of inventors and how they can best use their skills to make a positive impact on the world.
  • 75:00: Learn about the voting power of consumers and how you can determine what lives or dies in the market.
  • 89:31: Demystify the myth of the lone genius and learn about the importance of having a team in innovation, even for successful individuals like Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and Nathan Myhrvold.
  • 99:35: Hear about Jeff Bezos and his relationship with time and how this impacts his work as an innovator.
  • 104:05: Understand Bill Gates and his relationship with time and how this impacts his work as an innovator and philanthropist.
  • 112:23: Learn how to engineer and systematize more serendipity for inventions
  • 119:18: Discover how salsa dancing helps Pablos remain humbled and how it relates to his work as an innovator.
  • 124:52: Hear about why the title "computer hacker" frees Pablos to ask any questions amongst crazy inventors.
  • 129:36: Understand the fundamental problem with most do-gooders and how innovators can approach doing good in a more effective way.


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[00:00:00] CK: So I'm really excited to have my friend Pablo here, um, is a hacker extraordinary, uh, venture capitalists and salsero extraordinary as well, a polymath of many, many sorts. I'm really excited to have him on noble warrior.

[00:00:14] Pablos: Thanks. Yeah.

[00:00:16] CK: So, and, and I think the best place to start, maybe starting from,

um, how

we met 2010, we, you and I, we met at the Ted conference briefly.

You probably don't remember it's okay. And I believe you guys, uh, uh, bill gates was sort of in the conference and then he may have shown the mosquitoes zapping machine that you

[00:00:43] Pablos: invented. Let me think. So in that, so I think that year, that was, that was the year that we showed the bug zapper on stage ourselves.

So that was, uh, that was like probably one of the most ridiculous demos ever done at [00:01:00] Ted. I think, you know, I probably spent like a quarter million dollars on the demo because it's Ted. So you want to make sure it works. So we have. We had like a, we had, uh, like a PhD farming, mosquitoes in a hotel near Ted for like a week or two before the event I flew down on Nathan Myhrvold private jet with mosquitoes of our own from the lab from Seattle, just to make sure, cause we hadn't tested on different kinds of mosquitoes or ones born in different places.

I mean, there's a lot of things that weren't tested. So, you know, we had to control for all of it. We had, um, never shown it outside the lab, you know, it was only, uh, it was a demo that we did only done in the lab. And then, um, we were trying to do it live on stage and so you gotta get everything to work.

And so, uh, I, and I didn't do most of the work, you know, that the team did almost everything. Um, [00:02:00] uh, Eric Johanson in particular work night and day to make that happen on the stage of Ted. And so the, but yeah, for people who don't know, the machine can find mosquitoes flying around and then sample their wing, beat frequency with a laser.

And from that, it can sort out mosquitoes from other bugs, but it can also tell the species and the gender. So if it finds a female, a non-police defense, which is the one that mostly is carrying malaria in Sub-Saharan Africa, and that's the one we want to kill, if it finds those. Then it can shoot them down with lethal laser.

And so that's what we wanted to show that at Ted. So it was a cut. So dad was Nathan's Ted talk. We showed some of our other lab projects, but the course that's the one that everyone remembers. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:02:51] CK: I mean, okay. So, so let's, let's go down that, that path real quick. Number one, when I first saw it, I was like, oh, this is ridiculous.

No way they could do [00:03:00] it. And then you did it jaw dropping moment. Awesome. Good. Yeah. well. Planned well planned. Um, all right, so you and I, we talk a little bit briefly about, you know, um, the nature of good ideas. How do you evaluate a truly good idea? And you and I, we talked earlier that when someone immediately tell you that's a good idea, chances are, it's a mediocre saying, you know, it's not bad, but their response was, that's a stupid idea, however polite they say it.

Yeah. That's when you really pay attention. Can you say more about how you thought about like, I'm sure that idea, wasn't the only idea, right? It's probably like out of hundreds of things that you guys thought about, how did you evaluate the quality of an idea

[00:03:48] Pablos: we would do is so, you know, we would do in that context.

So this is the intellectual ventures lab. So in those [00:04:00] years when we were the bug zapper comes from. Trying to turn invention into a kind of team sport. And a lot of invention is kind of two major classes of invention. So one is maybe like an engineer working at Hewlett Packard is going to figure out how to make a faster, cheaper, better ink jet printer, because they've been doing it for decades.

They know everything about inkjet and they know exactly where the opportunity to like make an improvement on that is, um, that's, that's awesome. Um, but, uh, we wouldn't do that. Uh, we would work on the other class invention, which is like, what comes after inkjet, uh, could be something crazy that uses, you know, whatever curve jumping

[00:04:47] CK: paradigm-shifting.

There you go

[00:04:50] Pablos: into reality. And, and the, and a lot of times that kind of invention it's, uh, you know, often said it would be like a crazy hair in a [00:05:00] garage with a DeLorean, you know, it's like that, that's kind of what you, where those things come from. You know, it's, it's lone geniuses who spent more time on noodling on something that nobody understood for than anyone ever believed was possible.

And, and that just doesn't scale very well. And for a couple reasons, but when we can talk about that later, but the point is we were trying to do is say, okay, what if we took those kind of guys or those kinds of people put them all in the room together. And then have them bounce off each other. And so we built this stable of about 150 prolific inventors from around the world.

And what we would do is you'd find somebody with a problem. You know, ideally you want somebody who really understands what's not working and where the high value problem is. And if you get that person, surround them with a nuclear physicist, a laser expert, a chemist, I'm a computer hacker, [00:06:00] you know, collectively we would know the cutting edge in every area in science and technology.

And so the inventions that we were looking for, the ones that the borders, you know, or in the space in between those disciplines, and that's why you get something like lasers for mosquitoes where, you know, entomologists probably don't hang out with laser experts that often, in fact, even we thought it was a dumb idea.

We laughed about it at first. And we're like, oh, that's, that'd be funny. But one of the inventors in the room had worked on a star wars Reagan. But before you go further,

[00:06:37] CK: walk me through the moment that idea was conceived. People laugh about it too. Like, Hey, this is actually not bad. So just walk

[00:06:45] Pablos: through that.

So, so in that context, you know, you got a dozen people we wouldn't say as other people do that. There are no bad ideas. Um, we think there are some bad ideas. In fact, we can go from bad ideas, but. [00:07:00] Well, we'd say is if you want to shoot down my idea, you got to come up with one that's better. Oh, that's a rule.

That's like that that's the like that. So you can, you can, and these are all P you know, these people are chosen because they don't mind, you know, shouting each other down and telling each other how stupid they are, even though they all have seven PhDs. So the, so it's a, it's a good, you know, lovingly hostile environment.

Okay. So

[00:07:28] CK: double, double click on that real quick. Sure. Um, intelligent people typically have a pretty big ego, right? Let's say if you have seven PhDs, you're a prolific inventor churches are you go put, fill the room. Now you have a team of these prolific inventors. Uh, it's unfathomable for me to not seeing ego clashing with each other

[00:07:53] Pablos: before.

Exactly. You know, a bunch of patents with bill gates, but I can't be a sycophant. I can't like say, oh, [00:08:00] well, bill smarter than me. Cause you know, I have to be able to defend my idea and tell him his idea is dumb and you know, and same with Nathan. Oh yeah. Bill Nathan Myhrvold, who's notoriously, you know, probably the smartest living human I got.

And then, you know, 10 other people that they rounded up who they think are smarter than them. So yeah, we have to be, it doesn't work for everybody if you're timid or if you're easily offended or any of that, this is probably not the right context for you. That's okay. A lot of people are good at other things, but for the, for what we were doing, that was a really, really great dynamic because it

[00:08:39] CK: wasn't gentle.

It wasn't polite. It wasn't mean it

[00:08:43] Pablos: wasn't mean. And that's something, I think a lot of people don't understand. Like if you go to go to dinner with a family of Italians, you're going to think that, I mean, it looks like they're arguing with each other all night and you're like, why you guys arguing? We're not [00:09:00] arguing.

We're just talking here. Passionate. They're passionate. So it's a different vibe. Right? And so nobody nobody's upset after spending all day in an invention session, arguing about, about, you know, you know, about whether a laser is gonna work or not. So

[00:09:18] CK: I know I keep being dropped right off there. But even amongst family quote, unquote blood, right?

Yeah. Feelings still get hurt. Right. And, you know, egos get bruised. Yeah. So how do you make sure that these really intelligent, super egos come together argue for the sake of, for the best idea wins? Right. I, I hear that. Yeah. But to ensure that, Hey, underneath all of that, we're still like, you know, friends and we're, we're collegial with each other.

We don't, you know, I'm not trying to attack your character as it being like, how do you ensure that that doesn't

[00:09:59] Pablos: happen? [00:10:00] Uh, I don't think we tried very hard. I mean, if you, I mean, I, I mean, look, it's like when you watch footage of like NBA players, um, practicing, you know, they're talking shit each all the time with their own teammates.

Yeah. And it's obviously to drive them to be better, you know, you watch the videos of Kobe Bryant practicing. It's like everybody else only practices twice a day. I practice four times a day. Who do you? Think's going to be better. Well, uh, so you know, he's talking shit about his teammates. Well, I mean, you're not going to get in that room if you are, if you are sensitive to those kinds of things.

And even if, I mean, I know. I remember times when, you know, those guys are telling me my ideas are dumb and I'm like, they just don't understand how smart my idea was. And, you know, sometimes I was right. Sometimes they were right. You know, [00:11:00] time will tell, but it doesn't, you know, it's yeah. I, I don't, I don't think, I mean, I understand what you're asking and for a lot of people, it would be important to solve that.

And if you were trying to be very conscientious and egalitarian and take care of people's feelings, you, you, you know, those would be important things for us, your professional intellectuals.

[00:11:21] CK: Yeah. That's yeah. You're trying to get at the best idea. You don't take things personally, right?

[00:11:25] Pablos: Nobody in the NBA is going to ask you how you're feeling like it's not part of the game, you know?

So I, that's kinda how, I think I'm not saying we're the NBA, but we were the NBA of inventors in a way, for 10 years, we were the most prolific inventors in the world. You know, we have 6,000 patents on our own inventions because we were able to scale up that, that, you know, that type of venture and I was describing.

Right. And so, and I'm not saying. That we should have been the best. In some sense, we were uncontested, we figured out a process that was effective and that's why it's [00:12:00] scaled. Maybe, you know, I like to think we're smart, but you could argue about whether we're smart, but that process could be used by other teams of inventors.

Other people could take that process and scale up their own invention work. And that's what I think is really valuable to learn, um, independent of what you think about us and how big of a jerks we are for, for shouting each other down and over, over a laser, you know,

[00:12:26] CK: or whatever I interrupted with this story, please.

Oh, so,

[00:12:30] Pablos: um, so, oh, what I was going to say, what's very interesting about that is in that, that particular one, just because it's an easy example, um, we laughed about it and then one of the guys in the room had worked on star wars for Reagan, which was this idea to, um, have lasers in space that could shoot down missiles.

Uh, and it just sounds like total science fiction, but we spent, [00:13:00] I mean, the U S spent like 40 or $50 billion on this idea before, and they were able to prove that it would work. And what he said is, oh, well, we already spent $50 billion doing it in space lasers or figuring out if we could. And in this context, the mosquito is a larger.

Then the missile would have been their relative scale and the relative scale. Got it. And so we started thinking, oh, well maybe it would work. And it sounds cool. Let's try it. So we, um, oh, hold

[00:13:33] CK: on.

Yeah. Quick, quick zooming in that moment, was there someone, you know, I don't know that usually in a group there's like a hierarchical thing.

Right. So maybe like Nathan's spoke like, okay, let's screen like that idea. So everyone goes along or was more of like a group consensus thing and majority rules, like how, how does that work?

[00:13:53] Pablos: Well, in those days, this was the early days of the intellectual ventures lab. We, [00:14:00] um, hadn't really defined decision-making processes like that.

So we were pretty free to do whatever we thought was cool. Okay. And, um, You know, that's the kind of thing that works early in the life cycle of something. It, even for us, it wasn't, it wasn't true 10 years later, but in those days, like whatever we thought was cool, we'd go do it. So that was when we thought it was cool.

Um, and you know, Nathan certainly influences that some are, um, I don't know that, I mean, there may be a couple of other people who might've influenced which things we thought were worth pursuing

[00:14:37] CK: to. So, so the reason why I asked that question, by the way I came from my academic background and in academia, you need to do, you know, have like committees agreeing to give you the budget to pursue.

So usually even that process, just take months, if not,

[00:14:53] Pablos: right. I wouldn't want to work in that kind of process. Um, and you could say in some [00:15:00] sense, you know, we developed some process like that over time, but, um, but in the early days we didn't have that and it's very efficient and I'm not saying it's the best, you know, you may be probably make we, I mean, we definitely made some questionable decisions about what to waste time on, but we gotta remember like our,

[00:15:23] CK: well, give us one example of, you

[00:15:26] Pablos: know, if you can talk about, oh, sure.


[00:15:29] CK: like, oh, in hindsight I was, uh, you know,

[00:15:31] Pablos: not so efficient one. I remember. We had, we had this idea for how to cure cancer. And what we'd learned was that, um, there's, uh, a lot of times when you diet cancer, what happened is your body developed a cancer somewhere and that doesn't kill you? What happens?

Is it a little bit of it breaks off into your bloodstream, circulates around in your bloodstream, latches on somewhere. [00:16:00] Metastasizes there and grows. And that's what kills you. So, um, so this, and so in some sense, like a cancer growing, everybody's got cancer in their body somewhere. Like it's just whether or not it gets out of control.

So this, you know, so if you got cancer growing in one place, you know, your body's kind of handling it fine, but it latches on and metastasizes somewhere else. That's when it's a risk. So what we had learned was on average, these circulating tumor cells, as they're called, would circulate the bloodstream a million times before they latch on.

And we're like thinking, Hey, got a million shots on goal. Let's try to find them. Yeah. So we have a bunch of inventions. Essentially putting a fiber optic into your bloodstream, taking a photograph of every blood cell, every cell in your blood and using machine vision to analyze it and figure out [00:17:00] if it's a circulating tumor cell.

And if it is shoot it with a laser, like you always do. Um, we thought sounded like a lot of fun. So we spent like a year on this, trying to do the math and then, you know, make some prototypes and figure out how to take a picture of every blood cell. And we, we eventually figured out that, um, you know, I could take an image of every blood cell and analyze it.

It would take me about 150 years per pig per patient. And you'd have to be hooked up to a machine the whole time. So it's not all of the processing the process because of, because it's like it's trillion cells or something. I forgot how many, but you know, it's, it's a lot. And, um, so it wasn't, you know, we thought, well, it could paralyze it, parallelize it, there might be ways to improve that, but along.

So we spent like a year, I mean, doing other things too, but we always spent a year on this project. I called it micro fishing and. And what happened is, uh, eventually [00:18:00] we, I don't know who we talked to talk to some experts because there are people who are experts in these things that aren't us, like, I don't know anything about cancer.

So eventually somebody said, no, that's not true. A circulating tumor cell often doesn't make it around more than once you'll get up and you start thinking about it. You're like, well, yeah, that makes sense. Cause it's probably going to get stuck in the capillaries, in the lungs or something, you know, like why, why would it be a million times?

And so the more we looked into it, the more we realized that this fundamental premise that we started with was probably not true. So no

[00:18:36] CK: one like validated that idea.

[00:18:38] Pablos: Well, we did validate it after a year of working on it, but you know, it was, I mean, it was, it would have been cool if it worked. I mean, I think there's probably some merit there in different ways, but you know, we have a bunch of patents on how to do it.

Right. Um, so you know, there might have uses in [00:19:00] other cases, but anyway, it was, it was a boondock. Maybe if we'd have had a committee and gotten some experts and had them weigh in, we could have figured out ahead of time that it wasn't going to work. But I would argue that like the cost of the committee and the process of decision making in that context wouldn't have been better.

You know? I mean, so I don't know, were the thing to remember is like, we're really, really, really good at killing ideas.

[00:19:25] CK: Okay. So tell us the process. So

[00:19:27] Pablos: like if you kill ideas yeah. You kill ideas by, you know, by having somebody, you know, point out a, a fundamental flaw in your thinking, right. A fundamental problem that you're not taking into account.

A lot of times, those are pretty obvious. And so it's easy to kill ideas, you know, it's like, oh, you could make 'em, you could make, uh, I don't know. Let's think of a dumb idea you could make. Um, [00:20:00] and inflatable sailboats that, um, You know that we're filled with hydrogen and so they could fly over the land.

Okay. Can you come up with any reasons why that's a dumb idea? Uh,

[00:20:18] CK: I'm just laughing at the ridiculousness,

[00:20:21] Pablos: right? I just made that up, but I contend it's a really good idea because right now, sailboats obviously suck because they can only go over the water. But imagine if your sailboat could also float over the land and parking your backyard pretty sweetened or on your roof, like a helicopter and hydrogen is cheap and lighter than air.

So it just floats like a, like a Zeppelin. Pretty cool. Right. And, and then it's wind powered zero carbon cheaper than a Tesla. I don't see. What's not to like the, well,

[00:20:50] CK: the weight bearing capacity, the area of the

[00:20:54] Pablos: sales needed. She might need a lot of helium, you know,

[00:20:57] CK: to cover, to, to, to be, to, to be [00:21:00] usable, to do carry and you wait

[00:21:01] Pablos: weight, things like that.

You know what the Hindenburg is? Oh yeah, that's true. There's that slight problem that it could explode in a fiery death which you know, is not something sailors are used to dealing with. So yeah. So, all right. Fine. Bad idea. Dumb or, well, maybe we can catch it up. Can we make it better? Well, if we use helium, instead you need twice as big of a inflatable with helium, roughly.

Um, but it wouldn't be flammable. See, now we have a sailboat that's not flammable that can fly over the land to pretty sweet. Right. So now we're like lovingly trying to kill the idea, shoot holes in it. See if there's anything left standing, any reason you still don't like the idea, or do you want to inflatable sailboat now?

[00:21:53] CK: Uh, me mean, you know, the w after I watched a Pixar movie up and I got

[00:21:59] Pablos: [00:22:00] cool, great. So he's pretty cool, right? Okay. Yeah. Peoples people obviously, I mean, a hot air balloon is kind of like a, a budget version of, uh, of a inflatable helium sailboat. That's right. Um,

[00:22:14] CK: to, to source to

[00:22:15] Pablos: producing them at that site.

Oh yeah. That's a problem. Well, you know, here's the thing. Well, the thing about helium. It's one of the few elements on earth, but not few, but it's an important element that we cannot make, cannot manufacture helium. We have no way of making more. There's a finite amount of it on earth, and it's leaking out every day and floating into space.

We're putting it temporarily and party balloons, but then it goes into space. So we lose helium every day. And it's a very important element. We need it for making microchips. We need it for a bunch of things that we do industrially. So wasting helium is a really bad idea. Like folks, if you have kids get them something made out of plastic instead of [00:23:00] a helium balloon for the birthday.

Um, we need the helium. So there's a, yeah, so that's, so that's a, that's a problem. All right. So now we shut another hole in this idea. So, you know, we keep doing that. And if at the end of the day we run out of, you know, we can, we can patch up all the holes and we run out of ideas for how to kill it. So, quick question.

Yeah. Quick pause.

[00:23:19] CK: There, there's a technique with different color hats, basically during the innovative creative process. So for example, if you're like a, I don't know if you're, you're wearing a black hat, your job is to be, you know, a devil's advocate. You're always shooting though ideas. It doesn't matter how good at ideas, if you're wearing yellow, you know, I don't, I'm just making stuff up or you're coming up with, you know, doubling that up or you're, you're wearing red, you're like a cheerleader role.

So that's kind of like a one technique to do that. Uh, but in this case, in the discussion where you're shooting down ideas, everyone's trying to shoot down wearing [00:24:00] black hat essentially.

[00:24:02] Pablos: Well, I'm guess we're all just wearing all the hats at the same time. I mean, he kind of wants, that's kind of why. Of shooting down my idea, but having to come up with one that's better is effective.

It's it keeps the ball moving in the right direction. It's kind

[00:24:17] CK: of like a, the, uh, improvisational rule number one and yeah.

[00:24:24] Pablos: Yeah. Basically it's like that. And maybe that's a, you know, cause you probably don't want a whole room of people just saying Nope, lame. That sucks. That's yeah, that sounds like I'm describing a committee now.

Oh yeah. What did they contribute of? They said no to everything. Um, so anyway, the whole point of all that describing all that is just say, you know, that that whole process was able to yield an ability to invent at a larger scale. Um, I contend that it could work for other teams of inventors. Um, but you [00:25:00] know, I, I don't know if that's really happening in other places.

Um, and I think it's important because we really do need to scale up our ability to invent new technologies. And so from your

[00:25:12] CK: perspective, cause you're hacker and now investor, right. So why do you think there aren't other institutions trying to duplicate similar organized efforts of two scale up inventions to focus on deep tech.

And we're going to talk about that in a bit, but you know, things

[00:25:30] Pablos: like that. Well, do you know anybody besides me who has a business card that says inventor on it? I know a number you do. All right. That's pretty rare though. I mean, anybody with a business card that says like real estate agent lots. Yeah, lots and lots.

So, so it's a, it's not a legitimate career choice. Um, and if you think about it, you know, we have scientific community that's basic research. Yep. There, I mean, not optimally, but [00:26:00] fairly well-funded. We have a system down for funding them and their job is to discover how the world works. Right. And understand the universe and everything in it.

At the other end of the spectrum, you've got your. You know, entrepreneurs, their job is to like make a business, make a, find a market, make a product, satisfy a customer, all that kind of stuff in the middle is invention. And the job of a venture is to take the output of basic research, the output of science and ask yourself, you know, does this change anything humans have ever done?

You know, for me, I'm looking at every new chip, every new sensor, every new algorithm, every scientific discovery that I can comprehend and ask myself. You know, that goes in my brain as like, okay, you know, does this change how we [00:27:00] do things? You know, does this help us solve a problem in a faster, cheaper, better, more humane fashion?

Right. And so sometimes, you know, there's like a big Rubik's cube in my head that sometimes matches up the new, the new discovery to a problem. And that that's the invention process. And, and so that's not exactly what scientists are supposed to be doing. I mean, sometimes you get invention as a by-product of science and sometimes you get an entrepreneur who can invent something, but it's usually not what either of those people are really optimized for.

Inventor is kind of its own class and inventors. You know, we don't have money for them. Like we have money for entrepreneurs, lots of it. Like we fund those guys money for scientists, like more, but there's lots of it for inventors zero. There's nobody funding and vendors. So that's what we were trying to solve.

You know, we thought if you could fund [00:28:00] inventors, maybe we could scale up this whole thing. And, um, and, and so we were trying to find, you know, different ways of doing that, you know?

[00:28:13] CK: Okay. So you say it word use past tense.

[00:28:15] Pablos: Yeah. I, I don't work for intellectual ventures anymore, but I did for about 12 years.

Started up that lab and work on these kinds of projects that I was talking about. And, um, it was very unique experience. It was possible because, um, because of, because of Nathan Myhrvold and his ideas for how to do that, um, And Nathan had been very successful before with helping build Microsoft. Um, he was CTO there, but afterwards, you know, he wanted to get back to, you know, not, not just doing software, but inventing all kinds in all areas in science.

This was a way to, to do that. [00:29:00]

[00:29:00] CK: Do you see now, I mean, after it being working intellectual ventures, now it's starting your own fund. Um, this career path as inventors are now a little bit more substantiated, a little bit more, you know?

[00:29:12] Pablos: No, I don't think so at all. No, that was how I started that, you know, what, 15 years ago or something, and I don't think we're any better off now.

Um, why is that what's missing?

[00:29:22] CK: Is

[00:29:22] Pablos: that is model. I think we're worse off. Okay. Because when you look at the life cycle of a new technology, you know, by definition, if it's new, um, there's some, some risk there there's some unproven aspect. And in a lot of cases, there's kind of two major classes of risk. You got your, your market risk, which is, well, anybody pay for this thing.

And then you've got technical risk, which is like, is it going to work in the first place? And, um, [00:30:00] and what happened if you look back at. In like the eighties, like venture capital and eighties, which funded things like apple and Microsoft and, you know, all the technology companies that we know, you know, Intel and all that stuff.

Those were companies based on technical risk, um, and market risk actually, uh, But, um, but it was the job of venture capitalist to go in there early and sort all that out, you know, fund these things to get started, reduce the technical risk, prove that someone would pay for it, that kind of stuff. And, and then, and th that was real venture.

That's why it's called V. It's like, it's almost Shackleton scale venture. Like it's like you're going out into the unknown and it's probably not going to work and you're likely to die. Um, and the reason venture capital works is the money gets spread across [00:31:00] usually, you know, 10 different shots on gold.

So, you know, so hopefully nine of them die, but one of them turns out to be the next apple or IBM or whatever. So, um, or, you know, Google or whatever's, whatever, it's big, big enough to pay for the nine failures.

So the, yeah, so the point I'm really trying to make is that venture capital is the industry that we created really over the last, like 50, 60 years to enable taking on risk, you know, there's historical precedence for this. I mean, you know, I don't know, like yo explorers, you know, leaving their home country and looking for land full of spices and shit.

That is also venture. Um, venture capital is we know it was a way to mitigate the risk and take on technical risk. Um, for new technologies, I call that, you know, uh, [00:32:00] actual tech more. That is what enabled a lot of things to get developed and turned into technologies that, that thrive, that become part of your life, that solve problems that, you know, come into the world and, and, and change things. And it's a very important development, you know, um, for making that possible. And it's, I don't know that I need to defend it.

I mean, people can probably see, like Silicon valley has been very successful, uh, on a global scale because of this dynamic, because we invest in things that would sound crazy to any rational business person. And, um, but I think it got perverted over time because of the, because of the success of software, software is generally applicable.

You can use it for almost everything and it will make things better. It will improve the reliability and cost and [00:33:00] everything. So you need to use software for everything, but that was so successful and made so much money and was so low cost and arguably lower risk. That venture capitalists just got hooked on that drip.

Right? So we have not got a venture capital industry right now. We have a software capital industry and that, you know, that industry is overwhelmingly, aimed to just apply software to everything. And you can see it. I mean, the valuations are crazy and enterprise software and iPhone apps, and you have an unlimited amount of money for what I call SAS holes.

Um, you know, because that's the overhyped segment and a lot of competition for those deals. Meanwhile, if you invent a awesome new technology that can save lives, that can reduce costs by 10 X that can, you know, make something carbon free that [00:34:00] can, you know, all that stuff gets through research should be commercialized, but involves a little bit of hardware.

There's nobody to fund, you know, all VCs will tell you like, oh, we don't do hardware. Why it's hard says in the name hardware, we do software. So that's their, that's their business. Right? And, and they're hooked on those fast, you know, software projects are less costly that you can turn them on. 5 6, 7 years instead of 8, 9, 10 years.

You know, there's a, there's a lot of, a lot of things to like, so that's, you know, you can't blame them. We need to do that stuff. That's a good business model, but it has, it has, uh, steered venture capital away from, you know, working on actual technology. Cause there are a lot of problems you will not solve just with software.

Right. And it turns out they're important problems, right? So you [00:35:00] got energy, water waste, sanitation education. How do you feed all these people? You know, there's just a lot of problems that we need to be working on. And software is only a piece of the puzzle. So anyway, so that's how I think about it. And, um, and for the defined, your tech real quick.

Yeah. So deep tech is the count that's, that's what I work on. That's what I think of is what I call the actual tech. You could, you could get a sense of it by thinking of, uh, everything, you know, as shallow tech, shallow tech is, you know, uh, I don't know, Snapchat, um, you know, I phone apps, you know, to have like we delivered to your dorm room by drones, maybe.

I dunno. Um, but deep tech is the hard stuff, you know, it's, it's things that require advanced physics or new areas in science or some [00:36:00] chemistry or some biology. I mean, there's, there, there are things that, that, I mean, you could almost say deep tech is anything. That's not exclusively software. I see. And that's not a perfect definition.

I mean, I do some software, but it's like when it's fundamental breakthroughs, like if you have a new, what's the core

[00:36:18] CK: thing, right. Is it software or is it outside of software

[00:36:21] Pablos: or is it a, is it a. Technological advancement. Right? You can't, I mean, you pointed at Uber or, and say, well, what did they invent? I mean, what about Airbnb?

What about Snapchat? These are our heroes. What does Facebook invent? If there had been no mark Zuckerberg, do you think we'd have something kinda like Facebook, but we would, so I'm not really convinced that these are, these are technology companies, right? They're they're software companies, they're opportunists who made possibly a good product or good business.

And they certainly made a lot of money and that's all great, but we shouldn't confuse that in our minds [00:37:00] as technology. Right. That's, that's a different thing. And so we don't, we, I think it's a failing of the English language. Like we don't have a way of differentiating. Um, the so-called tech industry from technology industry.

So what do you think is

[00:37:15] CK: missing in terms of helping the deep tech? You know, is it tech, is it community? Is it, uh, uh, business models? Is it, you know, when it's organizational structures, is it, you know, communication? Is it storytelling?

[00:37:30] Pablos: Oh, storytelling, we should agree visit, but none of those things. Um, but I do say think all of those things are good examples of things that we got really good at in Silicon valley that the rest of the world should be trying to emulate all those things you described.

There's, there's a big problem with, with, um, With technology development in general, because it overwhelmingly happens in on the west coast. [00:38:00] Um, not even the U S just the west coast and a little bit on the east coast and very little in the middle. Um, that's not because there aren't smart people there, or because there are some good, uh, technology coming out of there or even good labs or universities.

I mean, we have all those things. What Silicon valley has is a culture that is supportive of doing. Right. And that has been the thing that is missing. I've traveled all over the world to places where they claim are going to be the Silicon valley of Latin America or the Silicon valley of Europe or whatever.

And it's all bullshit. And the reason is they're, they're not, they're not creating the most important thing, which is this supportive dynamic around doing new things. So for example, um, if you have a [00:39:00] startup in Italy and it fails, they open a criminal investigation, really? If, yeah. If I have a startup in California and it fails, VCs are calling me the next day to find out what I'm doing next.

Not only that, the same VCs that funded me. And the thing that just failed are calling to find out what I'm doing next. Right? Because in this context, we understand that it's, uh, it's, it's not a company that matters so much. It's the ecosystem that matters the ecosystem overall thrives. By getting a lot of shots on gold.

A lot of experiments, you just start up, you could think of as a million dollar experiment, when you do enough of those, you find the hits. It is a hits business and nominally. Most VCs think that they can win with a 10 to one hit ratio, right? So that means you gonna invest in 10 things. Nine of them are not going to make them [00:40:00] money.

That 10th one is going to make enough to pay for all failures, which is very important to understand if you're an entrepreneur taking money from a VC, even me is worse than taking money from a loan shark. Okay. Say my loan shark only wants two X return on their investment. Right? If you're going to give me a two X return on my investment, I can't work with you.

I need you to pay for my other nine failures. Right. I need a 10 X return before I'm making money. So it's a, I mean, I won't come break your legs. You know, it's a, it's not a great, it's not a great interest rate, but it's so important because for the kinds of projects that we're talking about for actual technology projects, there is no other money.

Like that's just what it takes and that's, we have to do it that way. And it's the only money you're going to get is, is money that expects [00:41:00] you to be a really big hit.

[00:41:01] CK: So what I'm hearing, what you say is the ecosystem is what's missing too deep to

[00:41:07] Pablos: support deep tech, right? So, no, I'm not, I'm not saying that we have the ecosystem, but the ecosystem is distracted.

It's distracted by the shiny software project. Um, you know, you can see these hype cycles now that we're distracted by SAS apps last year. Now they're distracted by web three this year. You know, there's, there's always a shiny, you know, new hotness that's, that's got them distracted because they're, you know, they're investing from a primarily financial, um, perspective.

Um, and you know, again, it's obviously working venture is the, is the highest performing asset class that there is. Um, and these guys are making money. So, so they're doing their job. What I think is, um, [00:42:00] you know, I'm a human. Who's working as a venture capitalist and I needed to be good at both as a human.

What I see is we have problems in the world that are our job to solve. Um, it's not up to the chipmunks to solve global warming. It's our fucking problem. So, um, so, okay.

[00:42:29] CK: Yeah. So say more about that, cause you almost sounded like a moral obligation to do that. So

[00:42:33] Pablos: I'd say it's a moral obligation. That's what I think.

I mean, I'm not, uh, not trying to moralize too much, but I am trying to moralize one thing, which is that, you know, we made 8 billion humans. Um, we made no additional planets. So our job is to figure out how are we going to take care of them, right? If you are one of the people here on earth, especially if you're one of the people who [00:43:00] either was made by other humans or is making more humans, you know, you should, the total cost of ownership involves like figuring out how do you take care of all these people.

And, um, okay, so

[00:43:11] CK: let's okay. So let's go into that a bit. Yeah. Because you and I will talk a

[00:43:15] Pablos: little bit. Oh, um,

[00:43:19] CK: it's a very privileged, oh, positioning. I mean, I agree with you number one. So let me just say that first. Sure. And at the same time, you know, obviously very smart, you have lots money. You have accomplished a lot.

You work with Jeff Bezos or bill gates, like never Nathan Meredith malls and all of these. So, so, um, do you feel that the positioning is more important for the privileged? Or do you feel like everyone ought to think about it? Kind of like what's his name? Um, the lifeboat guy can't remember his name, the light

[00:43:56] Pablos: bulb guy, knowing

[00:43:57] CK: that Edison light boat lifeboat.

[00:44:00] He was an architect. He created the man Buckminster fuller. Oh yeah. Bucky fuller, fuller. He talked about basically, oh, we live on this spaceship because everyone's responsibility to take care of everyone.

[00:44:17] Pablos: Well, I won't try to speak for Buckminster fuller, I, but for me, um,

I mean, I think it's, it's everybody's job right now. I'm not trying to, um, call out anybody in particular, if you are in a position where you're, you know, being attacked by malaria, you're living in extreme poverty, you're trying to take care of your family. I'm not vilifying you for not worrying about global warming.

That's not at all the case. Um, but for me, yeah, I think the world has invested a lot in me. You know? I mean, I didn't go [00:45:00] to college, but I feel like a lot of education certainly was, uh, spent on media. I mean, millions and millions of dollars were spent on my education in the context of companies that failed.

I worked at. Not all of them, but, uh, but a lot of them, um, so, you know, that's money spent on that's education for me, you know, I learned a lot in that context on somebody else's dime, a lot of jet fuel has been spent on me. Uh, you know, so, uh, I mean a lot of, uh, a lot of really, really good cheeseburgers have been spent on me.

So just the world invested a lot in me. So what I think is I should be trying to return something commensurate with the investment in me. Right. So, and, and so, and by the

[00:45:47] CK: way, I know that when you and I would talk to you, the pre podcast and conversation, you had mentioned something along the line of you want to be better ancestor for

[00:45:58] Pablos:future generations.[00:46:00]

Well, that is how I think about it. You know, this is, this is, I wanna, I wanna, we're playing a long game here. You know, we're really lucky to be here. We're lucky to be alive at this moment in time where things are actually better for humans on average than they've ever been in a billion years. Right. And so it's, that's super exciting, but, but it's not over, you know, we're here because of sacrifices made by our ancestors, you know, much more difficult and painful sacrifices than we're ever going to be asked to make.

So. We're a lot of people, you know, again, if you do what you gotta do, I'm not blaming anyone in particular, but I can speak for myself would just say, you know, look, I'm in, I'm in a, in a position where I can hopefully contribute something commensurate, uh, say that word because [00:47:00] with the investment that has been made in me and I, you know, I didn't choose that necessarily.

Some of it I did, but, but that means I could, if ever if I just leave the world slightly better than I found it, that's pretty fucking awesome. And that I think is a good, you know, if you just wanted to have like a, you know, a life philosophy and a tweet go with that one because. You don't need to do much, but if you are a net drain on the world, um, you know, I think you should possibly revisit your life choices, you know, and, and, you know, I gotta say, I mean, it's not that I'm immune to looking around and noticing a lot of people seem to be a net drain on society and the world, but, you know, I don't know what their situation is.

So again, you know, um, I'm, I'm speaking for me. Um, and anybody who, who wants to, you know, think along these lines, well, [00:48:00] those

[00:48:00] CK: that listened to noble warriors, this is part of one of the tenets. Oh, I see, like a goal. How can we be a net positive contributor to the world? And then I know that you and I had some semantic arguments about the point of, uh, legacy.

Oh. Cause when we were discussing in your mind, your definition of legacy was more self glorification, but in the context of noble warrior, oh, legacy is something that we leave behind as a positive

[00:48:28] Pablos: contribution. Well, you know, that's, uh, I, yeah, I don't know that we need to argue about it. Yeah. I mean, that's, that's my, uh, vernacular, but whatever.

I mean, it's, I don't expect anyone to remember me, you know, more than like a couple months after I'm dead. So in my mind, legacy sort of speaks to that. That's not really my thing, but you could certainly use it in a context. You know, maybe you would want to look at it and say, okay, if people were looking at my track [00:49:00] record a hundred years from now, would they be, you know, would they be inspired or proud of what the choices I made or something that might be how you think of it?

Um, even that I'm not sure is, uh, is a really good driving metric because it, it could lead one to virtue signaling in the same way that people are doing on a, um, on a shorter time horizon. Now, you know, so you ended up with a lot of people who are doing the thing that makes the, that looks good on paper, or it looks good on the internet, but isn't moving the needle.

So real quick

[00:49:36] CK: pause, pause. So there's an idea of intrinsic motivator versus extrinsic motivator. Sure. What, so extrinsic motivators, like how good do I look to others when I'm serving others? I make sure that I put an Instagram photo and video to make sure that everyone sees that I'm doing good. Okay.

That's the extrinsic. What I'm talking about is this intrinsic desire, [00:50:00] even if no one sees it, but it makes me feel good. I'm going to do it anyway.

[00:50:04] Pablos: Okay. Yeah. Well, if that, if that fits within the notion of legacy, then you know, we're probably on the same page. Um, I, I mean, what I'm trying to pick apart is when you look.

On the longer time horizon, which is a rare exercise for most people. I think, just look beyond your lifetime, you know, try, you know, a good place to start as a hundred years. And if you evaluate your choices about what we should be doing in the world on a, on a hundred year time horizon, you're going to get different answers than whatever you're doing now.

Um, certainly gave us in

[00:50:47] CK: a concrete example.

[00:50:49] Pablos: So, you know, it's very interesting people often call me a futurist, which I don't know. Um, I probably would never say that you look like one with your [00:51:00] glasses. Uh, if you, if you think about what does it mean to like, I mean, and I don't know what a futurist really does, but th but the point is, if you're trying to predict the future, it's very difficult to predict.

It's not, it's not actually that difficult to predict what's going to happen. Technically it's harder to predict the timeline, right? So for example, you can look out a hundred years from now. Are we going to be driving F-150? Is that burden gas? No. Right. How long is it going to take five years or 20? I don't know.

You know, it's hard. Pinpoint right before Tesla, you would have said, it's going to take a hundred years. You know, now that we have Tesla, oh, it might only be five. So there's a, you can apply that to a lot of things, you know, 100 years from now, will the us dollar be the reserve currency on this planet? [00:52:00] Or will it be Bitcoin?

Oh, definitely. Bitcoin. Like, you know, like how is it going to be 10 years or is it going to be 90 years? I don't know, because the reason, the reason is humans can, can screw it up for something measured in decades, but not centuries. So if you think about a technology, any technology, if it's developed and it works and it's better, humans can get in the way of adopting it for a generation or two, but it's really hard for them to resist adopting it in the long run.

When you start, it's not like we invented the wheel and then thought, ah, that's cute for the kids, but I'm just gonna keep walking. Like, no, we actually, you know, well, it actually probably did do that for like the, for a couple of hundred years. Like, ah, it was funky wheel. Kill them. Um, and then, and then we eventually adopt the wheel and nest.

So every technology that's [00:53:00] better does get adopted, but humans fuck it up in the short run with, you know, um, you know, sometimes it's, it's a lot of times it's a power struggle, but contextualized as religion or regulatory or, or whatever. So, you know, that's, so that's how I think about things. That's how I cheat.

I just look out and say, okay, if we're starting from scratch and it was a hundred years from now, would we still do things the way we're doing them? Where would we do it, this new way that I, that we're considering. Um,

[00:53:32] CK: so that's kinda like your first principle almost. Right? So instead of looking at.

Scratch off everything starting today. Yeah. You kind of fast forward a hundred years. You don't look backwards and say, Hmm,

[00:53:44] Pablos: what would a hundred years be like? Exactly. And if, and if the answer is kind of like, obviously that's how we would do it, then you can kind of start backing out from there and say, okay, well, how could I make it a shorter timeline?

And can I get that a hundred [00:54:00] years down to 10? Because if I can get a hundred years down to 10, then I got something I can invest in. Then I got something that I can, if I can see if I can connect the dots and see that blue line on Google maps to success in something like 10 years to get to an obviously better solution, that's something I could invest in.

Then I could go and say, all right, let's build this company. Let's put the money in to make this tech, let's go get going. Now, if I, if I go from a hundred years, I'm like, oh, it's still gonna take 50. Well, I can't invest in that because that's not, I'm not going to be around to, to make the feed through.

Yeah. So, so that's kind of my process. And, um, and, but you could apply it personally, right? Because if you ask yourself about the things you care about, like, well, obviously care about me. Care about my kid a little bit, um, [00:55:00] grandkids, don't got 'em, don't want them don't care, but you know, maybe you do. Um, but, but I still want the world to trend correctly.

I want my daughter to live in a world. That's more awesome than the one I live in. Right. I would want that for her. And, and a lot of these things take longer than a lifetime to affect. So I got to get started now on solving the problems that are going to suck for her in 30 years. So I think that, you know, for most people, it wouldn't be hard to kind of, you know, tune your thinking to be on a somewhat longer time horizon and not.

And so that's where better ancestors comes from. You know, I believe that, you know, you gotta, you gotta cover your existential needs. Right? You gotta, you gotta get a roof over your head. You gotta feed your kids. You gotta

[00:55:57] CK: do you look at massive. Do you look at [00:56:00] Maslow's hierarchy of needs sort of as a general

[00:56:03] Pablos: artistic too, like, well, I have at times essential type thing.

Yeah. I have at times because, um, for different reasons, I mean with, I think that's a. So Maslow's hierarchy of needs is a way of framing. What really, what humans need to thrive, what they need to be happy. And if you look at that, it's usually represented as a pyramid. I don't think that was that Maslow's idea, but anyway, The bottom half of that is his physical needs, safety, physiology, food, water, the you know, sleep.

Um, you go a little higher, you get to things like, you know, um, you know, you need housing and I don't like sex, you know, F for reproduction, all that kinda stuff. So [00:57:00] all of these kinds of things, health, um, safety, all those things there on the bottom half of that pyramid, are there the things you need just for just a, I call them like quantity of life.

Like, you know, those were things that quantity yeah. We need to keep, we can. And that's what technology is really able to help with right now. We can keep you alive longer. We can make you healthier. We can make it possible to have more kids. We can make it possible for you to eat better and sleep better.

And all those kinds of things. That's what technology is working on. We're solving those problems at an accelerating clip and it's amazing. It's awesome. Like those are like you and I exist because of technologies that solve those kinds of problems. Right. As an example, like 400 million people died of smallpox before we invented vaccination, right?

Like [00:58:00] these are the reasons we're here. Um, so if you go to the top half of the pyramid, you know, that's what I call quality of life problems, you know, sexual intimacy and family and friends, and, you know, having some kind of creative outlet, all these kinds of things. Things that technology is helping with at all.


[00:58:27] CK: may argue

[00:58:28] Pablos: a little bit on that. You could point a calm and mindfulness apps and shit like that, but basically, sorry,

I'm a little dubious. I think people are being a little too mindful and not working it up. Oh, you think you need to do yoga. You probably just need to like, take a shit and get back to work. Um, but that's just a cultural difference. Yeah. So Butler, uh, it helps some people, but to put the point is by and large education, all these kinds of [00:59:00] things.

We, I think the reason I described this as in Silicon valley, I think we're being a little disingenuous about them. We act like we're solving every problem in the world, but we are not, we're not trying, we are trying to solve the bottom half of the pyramid. Those are technical problems. The top half of the pyramid, what humans need to be happy.

I don't think we even have. Good ideas yet. Like we, we have people who say that ideas, but I don't think we really have good ideas. Right. We don't understand enough about how these humans work to be able to have computers are good at helping us with things. We know how to do. They're not so good at helping us with things you don't know how to do.

Right. So we, yeah. So we still have this problem of like, you can't turn over the job of taking care of humans until you can do it. And so I think it's very disingenuous and in [01:00:00] society right now to be worried about things like robots, taking jobs like a robot should do every menial, dangerous, repetitive, unrewarding job that it can do better than a human, because we need humans to do the things that robots can't do in particular, we need to take care of other humans, right?

And that's it. When you look at things like, like what, we cannot make much less hire enough nurses in this world, we cannot make much less hire enough teachers in this world. And why are we pissed off about a possible robot taking the job of a truck driver? Right. We also have a hundred thousand open truck driver jobs in America, right?

So that isn't actually a real problem because there are no robot trucks yet. Um, but we're wound up about these things because we have these scary stories about technology in our head. [01:01:00] We should celebrate every truck driver. Who's displaced by a robot and have them be a teacher, right? These are not technology problems.

This is a human values. Problem. Humans have chosen to waste our money on having people drive happy meal toys around in trucks instead of teaching our kids. Right? Like my daughter's class always had like 30 kids and one teacher and she wasn't like the problem kids. So, you know, she's just hanging out.

She don't learn anything a lot of the time, right? She's not in trouble, but she's not learning anything. Cause the teachers pointed at the kids were having trouble and we have a PTA meeting and bitch about student teacher ratios. I would trade any of her teachers, all of whom have been good for a displaced truck driver and a one-to-one student teacher ratio.

You don't even need a very good teacher if you only have one student. Right. And we don't think that [01:02:00] way we aren't thinking about. The actual fundamental problem and our values. What do we care about? We care about the care about our kids. We care about learning. We care about creating better humans, but then when it comes time to spend money, well not paying for that tutor.

I'm going to pay for PlayStation, Netflix subscription. Cool, new Kanye sneakers, whatever. So I just think this is, uh, this conversation is, is not going well in society. It's people, people want to blame technology for all their problems instead of selves and their, and their expression of their values.

They say one thing and they live another. And so you really got to get clear about what you care about. And so that's how I think Maslow's hierarchy fits into this. So just to be clear, I don't work on the top half of the pyramid. That's not my skillset, I'm not a nurse. Um, I work on the bottom half of the pyramid, [01:03:00] which, which is the foundation, that's the basis.

I'm going to try to make it so that everyone on earth can live, have a living standard that's as good as an American. Um, and that sounds crazy, but we are going to do that on this. In the next century, right? That is possible because technologies are giving us the force multiplier to do that. We've already done it in the last century.

I mean, Americans living standard has raised significantly. We live better than Kings. We live better than Kings from a hundred years ago, but everyone else's has. To the point where we were a hundred years ago and beyond. So it sounds audacious and crazy, but it's absolutely not. And it's totally within the PO.

We don't even need to invent new technologies to do that. We need to deploy the ones we already have invented and that's all possible in the next century. So that's what I'm working on [01:04:00] and the things that I care about th this is the

[01:04:02] CK: most passionate and I've seen you. Oh,

[01:04:05] Pablos: well, I mean,

[01:04:05] CK: I thank you for

[01:04:07] Pablos: sharing your heart.

I'm trying to be candid. It's important to share. You have to be candid. You have to be honest and you have to be, be focused on the things you think matter. You know,

[01:04:19] CK: so you're speaking to a fellow technologist who is focusing on the top half. Okay. So let's, let's get on this little bit. Okay. So my perspective is that our human experiences solely are between our heads, essentially.

So if we have, you know, um, the wrong mindset, however, comfortable in the environment, the resources, right? The, the friends and toys, you may have still miserable, depressed, suicidal. I've seen that. Yep. Yep. That's right. So, so in my mind, the, the source of suffering and joy stems from the mind, hence why I'm focusing on the mind.

Okay. [01:05:00] And I'm not sort of arguing against you. That is also important to have, you know, sustenance, right. If he's

[01:05:07] Pablos: physiology security, once we had solved. And then, then

[01:05:11] CK: in my mind, it's important to use technology as an amplifier, as a catalyst to help humans dive deeper into their own psyche. Okay. Because I would assert, um, that most humans don't really know how to use their mind.

Yeah. They, they let, their egoic survival instinct, whatever. So that's why they go after the iPhones or the PlayStations, you know, things that give them short-term pleasure rather than long-term fulfillment. Sure. Taking care of their kids. Right. Hanging out with friends, you know, do meaningful things, whatever the thing is for them individually.

[01:05:50] Pablos: Yeah. Um,

[01:05:52] CK: so do you ever

[01:05:53] Pablos: have any comment on that? I think so. I didn't say technology would never help [01:06:00] with the quality of life problems in the top half of the pyramid. Um, but I think we're at the beginning of figuring that out. So even the things you described, they're fruitful endeavors to, to work on.

Like we want to learn. Our brains learn about our psychology. Even as individuals understand ourselves, learn to know yourself, that's all very important. Um, and you know, maybe, uh, you know, tomato timer app can help you with that. Um, but what, I'm sorry, I, I'm sorry. That's like a, you know, like there's a pomodoro thing.

I'm just, I'm just being crass. Um, whatever app helps you. Fine. I'm not saying don't do it. What I'm saying is, um, that's a, it's a much different class of problem, right? So like, I, I divide, I make two kinds. I'd make two piles of problems in the world [01:07:00] problems that are technical in nature and then problems with people and between people in groups of people and human decision-making stuff, all that is out of my jurisdiction, right?

Because it's, it is messy and it's not. Um, and also humans are more difficult to reboot. Um, I like computers and robots and machines because, uh, I can, I can, uh, recover from my failures more quickly, I guess.

[01:07:31] CK: So gender pushback there real quick gentle pushback, because you've worked with bill gates, gates and Melinda, Melinda, and bill gates foundation.

They have the technical solution, which is a malaria vaccine, wherever, whatever the thing. Right. But the problem was human because the distribution center couldn't get it through the place

[01:07:54] Pablos: actually didn't work for the foundation at all. Oh, he didn't. Okay. I mean, that's a whole separate organization. They do take on these [01:08:00] political issues and how to distribute and all that.

That's how to, that's not my department. Um, I, I mean, I worked some with bill on inventing, but it's totally separate from the foundation and it was so I, you know, I mean, not to say that, not to absolve myself of all responsibility, but I, it's not the, that's not the part I work on. And so, and I just think it's important to understand that the nature of these, these things is totally different.

Right. But

[01:08:28] CK: the point I was trying to make here is that human beings have human natures, Robert Green. Right. He's wrote a whole book about it as human nature. Okay. Um, so let's say you've come up with the perfect cancer solving solution. Let's just say, right. Nonetheless, there still needs to be deployed.

And then they still got to get all these things. So in my mind, this is my humble opinion that as a technologist, you always need to think [01:09:00] about the human factor no matter what.

[01:09:03] Pablos: Um, I don't think you always do. You don't just on an unpopular view, please, please say more about that. I think that every, a technology, like anything else has a life cycle, you know, there's the, you know, at some point you gotta, like, if you're having a kid, you know, you gotta put them through school, get them to work hard, get them into college, hopefully pay for that, then get them into their first job.

Like people have to different people have to help all along the way to make that happen. Okay. I only do the fun part at the beginning. So as an adventure, I'm just like, Hey, look, here's another one. See what you think if it sucks, you know, maybe put it in jail, but you know, look, there's a, um, there's a, so I, I do think it is, um, for once you're

[01:09:54] CK: invented out

[01:09:55] Pablos: of your hands, I'm not necessarily, but look, I mean, it's very popular.

These [01:10:00] days should take anything anybody's working on and say, well, did you think of all the unintended consequences? And did you think about what this community or that community is gonna think about it? It's like, if I think about all those things, I'm never gonna get anything done that I'm good at. So I don't believe that that is a, uh, nearly as productive of an exercise as people imagined specifically for inventors.

Oh, it's for anyone. I don't know. I'm just going to talk about inventors, but, but in my case, I think it's okay for inventors to just go, try to figure out as much as they can, about how to invent solutions to problems, how to make things that are possibilities, how to add tools to the arsenal and, and, and then keep doing that.

Keep doing the thing you're good at because we have a whole lot of people who are really good at figuring out how to not do things. So I don't really worry about inventing something that then goes on to cause a real [01:11:00] problem because chances are, I mean, like I said, we have 6,000 inventions, right? Most of them are not going to go anywhere.

And that's the ones we patented to get there. We pray to have a hundred thousand ideas. So. So if I was worried about all the possible ramifications and I might not be good at that anyway, I may not be good at thinking about what the Latino community is going to think of my new idea. Right. Cause I'm not part of it.

Let them think about that. Let them advocate for it. Maybe it works. Maybe my invention is really useful for that community and not useful for another one. You know, I don't, I can't, I can't be thinking about what everybody else in the world is going to think about. And I, and I, and I really believe that, you know, we have a lot of different cultures in the world.

We have a lot of different countries. We have a lot of different people and they don't agree about what's cool. And you know what, none of them are, right. Like there is nobody who's got it. Right. And so I don't, I don't buy that story that I should try to think about whether [01:12:00] this is wrong for anybody.

Cause somebody might actually think it's right. So, and, and so I just think fundamentally, so

[01:12:06] CK: you're the one that your role is the toolmaker the technology maker. Right. And then how people use the tool, why their food good or not for good that's right. It's whatever they feel is effective for their problem.

It's problem and solution on both contextual

[01:12:23] Pablos: that's right. And if you, and so I think from an inventor standpoint, that's how I think about it. I don't think it makes a lot of sense to vilify inventors for not extrapolating, all the horrible things somebody might do with their invention a hundred years from now.

So, um, for, as a venture capitalist, I'm backing entrepreneurs. Now that's a different story because an entrepreneur is picking up this technology and trying to sell it to you. They're trying to say, Hey, this can solve your problem. This can make things better for you. This is a good choice, right? So they're advocating for it.

And [01:13:00] again, I think that should be their job. Now, if they're, it's like, Hey, check this out. You know, are you annoyed by traffic? This hand grenade can just blow cars up in front of you, throw it out your sun roof, and they'll get out of your way. It's a fucking amazing invention. You know, so if I'm backing an entrepreneur like that, who's like, you know, whose ideas obviously really bad for a lot of people, maybe not for the customer, but bad for society.

Like, you know, I probably, you know, uh, ma made a suboptimal choice and probably shouldn't give that guy any more money. Yeah. I might've given him the money before I realized how bad his product was going to turnout. You know? So again, I'm not saying I'm going to get it right every time, you know, cause these guys pivot and the next thing you know, they're blowing shit up and not shit they on.

So you got to at some point, like it gets absurd. So, you know, I think there's a, there's a different story there and, and the market should solve that. [01:14:00] Like we should say, no, that's a fucking terrible idea and not buy it. Right. And, um, and, and then, you know, you would hope that, I mean, I'm a very early stage VC.

So I, I fund people before we know if their ideas are actually any good, but most VCs come in much later after I've, you know, after we've got the thing working. Right. And so you would hope that they would also look at it and say, that's a terrible idea. The track record is imperfect. VCs funded a lot of stupid shit, but you know, that's, that's how it works.

And over time, I think where, you know, the biggest problem honestly, is. Much later in the game, which is that once that product exists, the, the, the customer has a chance to decide if this, if they, they get to vote with their dollars, they get to vote with their eyeballs and their attention. Right. And so when you, and this is free, I think for your audience, the real [01:15:00] point, the better, yeah.

You get to choose what you want in the world, by voting with your dollars. That is the most powerful vote you will ever have. So second would be voting with your eyeballs, which is just giving your brain over to whoever wants it, so that the responsibility for killing bad ideas, largely lies in the, in the hands of the customer who make it possible.

If you don't buy something, if no one buys it, it will die every time. So we have a very effective, if you want to see democracy at work, it works in the market. Doesn't necessarily work with this whole voting for politicians scheme, but it definitely works in the market. You get to vote things into oblivion by not buying them.

Right. And when you get pissed off at the things that do exist in the world, it's because you probably, and [01:16:00] certainly other people voted for it too much. Right. And so you could extrapolate from there that that commentary could be applied to, um, people's frustration with social media and with Uber and with it, you know, whatever, things like that, right.

We voted for those things with our dollars

[01:16:18] CK: real quick, as you were speaking of. Um, being a venture capitalist, someone like Elon Musk to me is a full stack entrepreneur who can conceive an idea, does some, you know, you know, uh, original calculations have prototypes and move it all the way to the broader society and market.

Right. Because he has, he has the resources, the brain that a lot of different skills to do that. Yeah. But it's really rare to have that combination of skills. So it has why there's one Elan to, you know, be essentially in my mind, single-handedly push electric cars and stuff like that [01:17:00] to, um, you know, accelerated it from hundred years to like 10 years or something like that.

So, uh, when you're making this type of investment decisions going forward, are you looking for someone like a full-stack entrepreneur like that? Or are you more of just like, Hey, this guy can really fucking event. Yeah. Let me double down on this. But, but the future where he's going to go, let's see what happens.

[01:17:26] Pablos: Well, well, there's two things there. So I mean, I don't actually know Elon Musk. I think we met, I can pass it. I don't know him. Um, but obviously like you I've seen, uh, the rise of Tesla and space X and all these things, um, But I've also been an entrepreneur and I don't want to be an entrepreneur. I don't want to hire people and fire people.

And I really don't want to [01:18:00] have to help them grow in their careers and stuff like that. You know, all this shit that you have to do. I don't want to do that. I don't want to manage a PNL. I don't want to have to call and negotiate with suppliers. A lot of shit I don't want to do. I've had to do all of that and some, and I can pretend to be good at it for a while.

Some of it, but most of it, I'm not naturally good at it. Most of it in one lifetime, I'm not going to become good at. Yeah. But as an entrepreneur, to get your, to get your projects done, you have to do everything. You have to do everything. You have to learn everything and you have to do everything that you can't find somebody better than you to do.

That is the job. And it is, um, exciting for some people and they embrace it and do it well. At the end of the day, some, even someone like Elan, I don't know him, but I'm guessing there's a part of the job that he likes that he wants to do. He often says that it's the engineering, everything [01:19:00] else. He just had to, he had to learn and he had to do it to get his projects done.

And so, um, people like that are extraordinary and they're rare and I don't think it scales. I think that's a huge problem for the world. When I look at the reason Elon has been so successful, fundamentally, I think it is because he, he definitely had an interest in science and technology engineering early on.

That's what he wanted to do. But instead of focusing on that, he went to work in finance and the guy learned fundamentally. How finance works and that has helped him borrow absurd amounts of money. And it's helped him finance his companies in ways that other entrepreneurs would never have understood how to do.

And that has been the super power that got him through. It's an amazing thing to see. I don't [01:20:00] know any entrepreneur that's pulled off what he has, even at a smaller scale and I'm, and I'm embarrassed in my own track record as an entrepreneur. I think it's embarrassing to look back to, oh man. If I had only understood finance better, I always thought finance was dumb.

And for people who aren't doing anything cool. Um, and I was kind of an asshole to finance people. Sometimes my apologies, I, um, have since gained an appreciation. Um, and I think that, um, so I think that's a very important thing to understand. And that's one example there, you could, you could ruin it in other ways and all of us are kind of a Venn diagram.

That's off-kilter and all of us have gaps, including Elon Musk. Some of his are obvious, um, because he's a public figure. Um, but the, but there's a, and you know, maybe in some sense, the point of your podcast is like, well, learn how to [01:21:00] improve yourself, you know, um, take on the, those gaps and don't let them ruin your life and things like that.

Um, So that's one thing. Second, as, as an investor, you know, I'm looking to back primarily technologies that can make a difference. Now, a technology disembodied from a founder or an inventor or a product or something is totally useless. And I know better than anyone do. Somebody needs, like I have a patent sitting on the shelf.

It's not going to go anywhere. Like the world has no use for a patent at all. If I take the patent, give it to an entrepreneur and make an LLC. Now you've got something in the world, knows how to work with. So in a lot of times, as a very early stage investor, that is kind of what I'm doing. I'm trying to piece the puzzle together, make [01:22:00] this technology look a little bit more like what the venture community is used to seeing.

Right? And so a lot of times I'm starting with a founder who is the technologist, you know, they're the technical founder and there's a lot of problems I run into, you know, a technical founder might be really smart. They might know everything you could possibly know about the thing they invented. Um, they might even have a good idea about how it could be commercialized and go to market, but there's a bunch of common failure modes.

You know, the most common one is they're not. I mean straight up there is an archetype, a mindset that makes a good entrepreneur and some people, well, there's a lot of hustle in it. I mean, there is, there's a lot of hustle in it. A lot of times that that hustle ends up being anathema to the technical founder.

[01:23:00] Meaning as a tech, I had this problem solving, you know, as a technical founder, I have to be right about the things I tell you. I have to be able to say, this technology is going to work. I understand it. I know you don't, but trust me, it's going to work. If, if it turns out I'm wrong about anything you can trust me.

Right? I can't lie. I can't exaggerate. I can't, I can't even speculate about some numbers because that will erode trust in me. I'm the technical founder. In that context, I need to be trustworthy. The entrepreneur needs to be able to say, wave his arms. Say, imagine the future. Imagine someday we have solved global warming.

Well, here's the product that could do it. You know, like whatever. So an entrepreneur needs to take you into a fantasy future and they say, imagine it takes six months to get. And then, you know what, well, it took us six years, but you said it was going to be six months. [01:24:00] Well, you know, the entrepreneur needs to be able to brush that off and say, it's only going to be six more months, you know, that's kind of the that's, I mean, for better or worse, it's just a different skill set.

And it's a different kind of, I'm not saying that an entrepreneur needs to be a lie, but they need to be able to tune into the human psychology, then you'd be able to paint a picture, tell a story, contextualize the technology in a way that a specific kind of business or industry can get interested in it.

You know, they need to be able to, you know, fill in some gaps and smooth over some bumps and, and show people what's possible even before it's been done. And before it's been proven. So I think that's a very important skill set. You can see that happening live on Twitter with Elon Musk and other, you know, other entrepreneurs.

So, um, it's a, it's a, it's an important skillset. So you, you know, they need to have a sense of business. They need to be able to understand, um, [01:25:00] you know, It's the fundamentals of business. You know, this is a product, the product is going to cost something to make, you know, somebody's got to pay for it. They need to pay more than the cost to make it, or it's certain volume that has to even out, you know, there's all those kinds of fundamentals that a technical guy could learn.

But, um, a lot of times they haven't put the effort in to learn those things and they often have a cultural bias against them. You know, like the easy one to see is, um, you know, technical founders often have a disdain for salespeople, right. Um, we see this all the time. Engineers think they're super smart salespeople are idiots who are lying all the time and they, and theirs, and that they don't hang out together.

They don't have lunch together. They don't want anything to do with each other. They think that the other part of the company should be eliminated. Right. And, um, and obviously that's not ever true. Like you actually need both. And it's very [01:26:00] rare that you have one person who can be both. Right. I don't think that scales, and I don't think it's the right thing to try to do that.

But Silicon valley is constantly looking for that guy. So I think a better thing is, and a winning strategy, which you can see a lot is when kind of like dating when those people can pair up. Um, you know, when a technical founder can develop enough of a appreciation and trust in an entrepreneurial founder, To work together and there's so much fucking work to do.

You need to do that anyway, like in every startup there's so much work to do, does it matter if you're Elon Musk, you can't do it himself. It's a, it's a farce. It's a, it's a fiction for the public that Elon Musk does everything that Steve jobs to everything, these people do not fucking do everything. What they do is they surround themselves with smart people who are effective at doing their job and they let them do their job.

Right. Elon Musk [01:27:00] and Steve jobs were famous for firing people. You know why they didn't fucking do their job, right. They didn't do the job they were trusted to do. Right. Those guys give their team a longer leash. Then other managers, right? The, the reward to them for giving a long leash is you better get the job done, right.

If you don't get the job done, I'm not going to fix you. I'm going to fire you and replace you with somebody who's better. Right. And I believe that is a winning strategy that is being neglected in a lot of contexts, right? Like that is the game. If you don't want that long leash and you want somebody to micromanage you and you need a helicopter mom, you can go work at, you know, I won't name companies.

So, so that's the that's what's going on there. Right. And so even though to the public, it looks like, oh, Elon Musk goes and turns every screw himself to put together a Tesla in between, you know, building rockets. So that's not what's going on. Right. [01:28:00] Obviously, if you don't, it doesn't take much to think about it and figure it out.

So that's the, so

[01:28:05] CK: actually, so let me, I mean,

[01:28:07] Pablos: So, what is it? Let me say one last thing. What I'm looking for in a founder is can they take the help? Hmm. Now that might mean doesn't necessarily have to be helped for me. Hopefully it's not because I got other things to do, but I'll try to help you. And if I can help you and you can take the help, then I'm very excited about working with you.

If I come to you, if I'm, you know, you're trying to get me to back you and I say, Hey, this looks good. You got three out of five puzzle pieces. We've got to find a founder. Uh, we got to find an entrepreneurial co-founder to be. Or I say, you know, this is cool, but you know, we're going to have to get the prototype done before we can raise real money or whatever, whatever I say, if you're like, cool, let me work on that.

I'm stoked to work with you if you're like, well, you know, that's not how we're going to do it. Or, you know, which [01:29:00] might be right. That's fine. You don't need my help or I'm going to be CTO. Because everybody else will fuck it up. Okay, cool. I'll watch you fuck it up from a distance because, cause I know you need help and it doesn't necessarily have to be from me, but you have to be able to take help from somebody because you're gonna need a whole team.

Yeah. And that's the job here. We're building a company, we're building an enduring company. We're building a team. That's going to make things happen. There's no individual on earth. I mean, I know some of the smartest people on earth. I know some of the most capable people on earth. I know it's the most successful people on earth.

None of them do it themselves. Yeah. That is not the game. I'm not looking for somebody like that. Even if they did exist, I wouldn't be the one to try them. I want to find, I want to find somebody who can be, can attract a team of people who are smarter than them and trust them to do their jobs. So that's the, that's usually the single most important attribute I'm looking for.

That's beautiful.

[01:29:59] CK: So [01:30:00] what I heard, number one is coachability, right? To work with you, right?

[01:30:04] Pablos: I don't, it doesn't have to be me. I mean, I help in the ways I can, but it has to be some sign that they can accept help from somebody. Yeah.

[01:30:13] CK: And then ability to attract a team. Uh, it's very

[01:30:16] Pablos: helpful to, to, to do that because.

You know, they're inspiring people to come commit their what's Mo most valuable their, their, their time, their attention, their skills, to your idea. What

[01:30:31] CK: do you think about premadonnas someone who is very capable, who may be coachable, but may have some, you know, no we have in Madonna's

[01:30:42] Pablos: we have a, uh, we have precedents for that.

Like sometimes it works right. There are people who are successful entrepreneurs that you would characterize that way, but they're, they don't scale. There's not enough of them. And at least not for what I'm trying to do, which is, you know, I'm trying [01:31:00] to solve a lot of big problems in the world. I can't just have, you know, if I, if I make the next Facebook, I'm a failure.

So I gotta find, uh, people who can build, build teams to solve problems. And so a prima Donna, I think there's a, you know, look, there is a case, you know, I call it, you know, there is a model that works, which is one big asshole at the top. That's that's Steve jobs and Elon Musk and arguably some of the other famous founders, you know, and they do a really important thing is they, um, they take the heat and they provide cover for the people who are getting the job done.

So when you pick those stories apart, what you see is. Those guys. I mean, it looks like they're premadonnas it looks like they're megalomaniacs. It looks like they want all the attention for them. What they're doing is they're drawing fire, right? They're taking [01:32:00] the, the, the heat. They're taking the responsibility.

They're taking the fire off of their team. You don't know the names of anybody who works at Tesla, probably unless they were friends who went there, Elan doesn't get on stage and talk about his team, right? He keeps the whole world focused on him, on the product, on the company, on what they're doing, where they're going next on the vision.

And when the world is bitching and moaning about Tesla, they're bitching directly at Elon Musk on Twitter all the time. No one holds back. The guy takes more heat than anyone on earth. Not even putting draws as much of a inflammatory, you know, uh, criticism is Elon Musk. That's his job, right. He can do that.

And it frees up his team to work. Um, he doesn't need his team on Twitter. I don't know if anyone else at Tesla is tweeting. Probably [01:33:00] not. He would probably fire them if they did. Like, I got Twitter covered, you guys fucking build Teslas faster. Right? So that's, and, and so, you know, a lot of times the stories we have in our minds about what's going on in these contexts are, are.

Uh, skew, you know, they're not, it's not, what's really going on. I'm trying to describe what I think is going on in these places. But, so I think there's a, you know, the, the, the so-called pre-Madonna, um, you know, we've seen it a few times in tech it's been effective at times to do things that were seemingly impossible.

Um, so I have some respect for it, but I don't think it is the scalable model. And I don't think it's the, on average, most successful one. Um, and so I, you know, I, I don't really expect to back a founder that, um, where I think that's the primary thing going on. Um, so got it.

[01:33:54] CK: So you have had the privilege of working with some of the luminaries of our time, [01:34:00] right?

The Gates, the Jeff Bezos, uh, Nathan Myhrvold, and then you add, share how they look at time differently. So one of the key before you go into what makes them different speaker about how they think about time and perhaps,

[01:34:17] Pablos: well, the, um, the thing that makes an impression on me the most, or one of them is early on when we started blue origin, you know, there were like, Three or four or five of us trying to figure out how to get into space together.

Right. And it sounded like a impossible, crazy idea to build a spaceship company. Um, this was before space X. This is before [01:35:00] anyone had made a significant effort to build a private space program that had, that was not a thing before. Um, it was unprecedented to imagine somebody being wealthy enough to even try.

And this time Jeff was worth about $7 billion. And we thought that was astounding. Like, holy shit, that's so much money. What could we do with like a billion, which was like an absurd budget for a startup because in those days, no one had ever been funded like that and much less to do something so cool that obviously had no commercial potential in the near term.

So, um,

[01:35:48] CK: wait, so go, go into that a little

[01:35:51] Pablos: bit. So

[01:35:54] CK: was it like, Hey, I just want to go to space. Like what was the motivation?

[01:35:58] Pablos: Yeah. Well, that's [01:36:00] the, so that's how, and also

[01:36:01] CK: what has the, how has it pitched you to say, Hey, let me be a part of this. Like your idea

[01:36:07] Pablos: of going to space? Well, I wasn't recruited by Jeff.

I was recruited by, um, Neal Stephenson and Keith Rosa, who were the guys that were, that had started it with Jeff. I think Neil had talked Jeff into Jeff and Neil had been hanging out and I, as I understand it, Jeff said, I'd be kind of cool to do, like try and do our own space, you know, programs, you know, are, you know, I'd like to do that.

And Neil's like, well, how about now? And just like, okay, so that was kind of the origin of Blue Origin. And, um, and so then, um, you know, they, the idea was to try to find a, uh, you know, is there a better way of getting into space than rockets? Because, you know, um, [01:37:00] there are a lot of other ideas, but they had not been developed and some were from NASA, some were from other places.

And so we built this group called blue operations to explore variations on, on other ways, getting into space. And there are a bunch of really cool ideas, but, um, you know, we spent a few years working on them and what we found was that rockets are actually the most practical now because you're standing on the shoulders of NASA and Russia and the $50 billion they had spent in developing rocket technology.

So if you wanted to get into space any time. Probably better to just do rockets. So that's when blue decided to develop a rocket and they set off to develop a rocket, um, which has turned out awesome. Like they have a killer [01:38:00] powerful rocket people don't realize space X took a scrappier approach and re-engineered a Russian rocket.

So they took a Russian rocket sign and then started advancing on that, um, which has also obviously worked out pretty well. And they they've been very, very scrappy, very, um, motivated public about what they do. And it's been inspiring to watch. Um, uh, blue was always very quiet. You know, we didn't realize that.

Um, well I think partly. It's just different personality. Jeff has, it has a, not a need to be in the public spotlight. Um, it doesn't

[01:38:46] CK: help the development process to have more, you know,

[01:38:50] Pablos: public attention on it, succeeded money. Uh, right. So I think that might be the fundamental reason I'm speculating, but anyway, so, [01:39:00] uh, I think it would have been nice.

I mean, everybody probably would have liked it if blue could move faster, but they had taken on a big engineering project and it just took time. So anyway, um, um, yeah, so that, that was the, you know, that was kind of the, the layout of what was happening with what's

[01:39:22] CK: the, so from your perspective, since I haven't really met anyone, who's worked directly with these guys.

What would you S okay. Because the thing I ask about was how they think about time.

[01:39:34] Pablos: Yeah. Right. So the point of, so the point of blue origin from the beginning was not to make money. Like Jeff has a way of making money. That works really well. Um, the point of blue origin was to recognize that, you know, earth is actually really special.

That's why it's called blue [01:40:00] origin. We have the most blue planet. It's beautiful. It's a wonderful place. And if you extrapolate the future for our species, in the best case, scenario, things go great until earth melts into the sun. Right. That's an inevitability. So there are lots of other existential threats that could happen sooner, but, um, but one way or another, for this species to evolve, we will have to get off of this planet.

And that's a very science fiction notion that most people wouldn't agree with or accept, or they haven't even thought about that's okay. But if you do accept it, then you recognize, well, that's a real. Difficult long-term problem to solve and long-term problems. You've got to start a long time in advance to solve.

So if you, you [01:41:00] know, if humans were to S or to try and, you know, get, make it practical to be in space, we've got to start some time as well be now. And if you look at what the vision for blue origin is, and really what Jeff has articulated it's is trillions of humans. Thriving in space. Obviously can't have trillions of humans on this planet and under any circumstance, but you could someday have trillions of humans in space colonies.

Maybe some of them stay close to earth. You might come visit earth once or twice in your lifetime. Like you're visiting a national park. Um, other ones might be set off, you know, irreversibly towards other galaxies, who knows, you know, and I think it's actually a beautiful vision, even though, you know, that does sound like science fiction.

It's obviously not something most people are thinking about day to day it's they [01:42:00] got more important issues to worry about and that, but that to be. Is the basis of what it means to be better ancestors, you know, could we start that ball rolling? Could we think on longer time horizons, could we, could we take a little bit of our excess attention and resources and aiming at generations yet to come?

Um, and, and what I learned from Jeff was that he was free of some of the, you know, material concerns, the bug, a lot of us down. And he was wealthy enough to think on that long of a time horizon, and to think about practically pursuing something on that long of a time horizon. And so question not to vilify anybody who doesn't do that, you gotta do what you gotta do, but that's what I learned quick.

In that context

[01:42:53] CK: there, has he always been that way, or he only started to think about that way now that his [01:43:00] material wealth is never, you know, can't be

[01:43:03] Pablos: finished on design. Well, I, I mean, you know, Jeff should answer those questions and maybe he has, I, you know, Jeff by all accounts has been obsessed with going to space since he was a kid.

Oh, I didn't know that he's on the record at like age 18 in high school saying I'm going to make a bunch of money selling, go space. And then, you know, the rash. For getting into e-commerce and starting Amazon was to make a bunch of money to go to space. So I think he's on the record for those things. So I think it's pretty sincere his interest and, and, you know, that's fair.

I'm not a space geek. Yeah. You know, that is not the thing that drives me. Um, but, but for him, that really, it really was. And so that's what I saw

[01:43:52] CK: beautiful. And know that you and I, we also talked about their limitation to time and space [01:44:00] and the bill gates approach and the Jeff Bezos approach us a

[01:44:04] Pablos: little bit different.

Oh, um, well, you know, yeah. I mean, bill definitely was not a space geek in the same way. Um, and he's aimed his attention. Um, I mean, I think his attention. Very focused on Microsoft for most of his career, but obviously in the last 10, 15 years, steered that towards philanthropy. Um, and you know, trying to find ways to solve problems for humans on earth, in a, in a shorter window of time, you know, and, and something, you know, now, uh, now and in the immediate future.

And so, um, that has been awesome and inspiring also in a different way, because, because, you know, what's cool about it is a big bill does have a practical, [01:45:00] um, you know, mindset around how to solve these problems, right? Like he's. He's not just a charity, you know, when we would invent a technology that could help eradicate disease or something, it still had to come with a business model because anything that's a charity like is going to run out of money, even bill, eventually it was going to run out of money, giving it away.

So we would try to invent these things in a way where it could, you know, uh, make a business. Maybe the business didn't have to pay for all the R and D um, or the manufacturing or the setup costs. We could cover those things, but once it was up and running, it had to sustain itself. You know, so some of the inventions are like that, you know, like a simple one is, um, we were trying to help these, what are called small holder farms.

There's half a billion of them in the world. They're basically like a family with a cow or some chickens, right? You and I don't see them often because [01:46:00] we live on the west coast, but in a lot of places in the world what's going on is the family has some livestock of some kind. And that is part of their income.

You know, it's part of their livelihood. It's very important. Um, for a lot of them, they have a cow and the cow produces milk. They, we would see this often in like in different places in Africa, you'd have a small holder farm where the family would milk the cow twice a day and milk it in the morning, take the milk to market.

Um, the milk kit in the evening and that milk the family would use. Right. And, um, the, you know, you gotta remember, these is a context where they have a cow, but they don't have a refrigerator, so there's no preservation. And the way we're used to having, there's no refrigerator, there's no power for it. You know, this, this milk is spoiling and pretty rapidly [01:47:00] what the, um, what we were trying to figure out as well.

Is there a way we could help them preserve the milk from the evening that they could also take it to market and double their income. And we w I don't get into all the details, but we invented like a really cool. Microfluidic ultra pasteurizer that costs $50,000 and was super high tech and failed every time and all kinds of inventions that were bad ideas.

And then we invented a genius invention. That totally works. What it is is. A better milk jug. So possibly one of our most successful inventions is a better Mohawk. So it's a milk jug made a food grade plan because these people are using Jerry cans. Like they literally using the same kind of can use for [01:48:00] gas.

They were like, rinse it out real good. Wow. Can put milk in it in some cases. I mean, I know it's pretty ridiculous. I mean, that's just their context again, I'm not blaming them that they're doing the best they can, but that's the resources they have to work with. Yeah. The milk jug we invented, it was food grade plastic.

So that's a start. Um, we figured out that a big part of what you need to be able to do is clean it real good. So it has a huge opening, a lid big enough that you can stick your hand in it and scrub it out. Um, and it has a handle built in, um, there's a stack real nicely. There's a couple of features and we were able to design that, make molds for it, and then set up businesses in different markets that could produce the, produce the product locally in a injection mold, bolding operation, and sell it locally.

And that product is all over now and it [01:49:00] makes a difference. Right. And because it can, the thing is stir the milk. You can milk into it and it's sterile enough. Oh, there's there's other features. But anyway, You can keep the milk without refrigeration long enough to live another day. And that's pretty cool.

So anyway, that's, that's the kind of thing that we would try to do in the context of working with bill also totally valid, super important. We love it. Um, it's just a different, it's a different mindset about where, where to go to solve problems. And you know, I'm not, I'm not, I'm advocating really for one or the other.

I think we both, we both had a large-scale.

[01:49:42] CK: Yeah. Anything else about these two specific person that you're like, what makes them unique and. It's such a game changer in the world.

[01:49:54] Pablos: I really, I love her. I love Jeff. He's got he's so fun. Really smart. [01:50:00] Very energetic. Gives a lot. I mean, I just, I'm very impressed with, with Jeff and I, I, in some sense, wish I had spent more time working with him.

Um, it, those days at blue, you know, he didn't get a lot of time to spend with us. Um, I'm hoping that now that, um, he's sort of got other people managing Amazon, he'll be able to spend more time on blue, which would be really cool for that project. Um, there's uh, and I think people just don't know that they don't understand.

These are some pretty, pretty delightful humans, uh, bill who, for some reason, doesn't seem to, uh, play well in public, um, is awesome. Bill is a great sense of humor. He's hilarious. He's super smart, obviously, but, but funny, fun, sociable, not, not what people think at all. It's really strange to me that, um, people have, uh, a lot of people have been kind of negative view of bill [01:51:00] personally, which is really sad because he's pretty great.

Um, So, yeah, I don't know. I th and I think, uh, they both contributed a lot. It makes me sad to see people who are, um, so negative about them. They've both done a lot for the world.

[01:51:16] CK: I mean, if you look at human nature, yeah. It's always easier to blame the riches man for something happening in their life.

Right. It's just like, my life is bad because these people,

[01:51:28] Pablos: Peter lake bed, I, there were times when I thought that, um, you know, when I had to use windows in the nineties, but that was, you know, I've, I've tried to repent a little bit for, for the things I said about Microsoft and bill. Oh, you said that to him.

I was, I was not a fan. Did you say that to him? Don't know. I didn't say that to him. I mean, I'm, I guess I'm probably like one of the few people. Got away with using a Mac [01:52:00] in the room with bill shit, because not a lot of people would do that in those days, but that is hilarious. But, uh,

[01:52:08] CK: last question, I'll actually the secondary last question, serendipity, because we had mentioned it near, this is the invention business.

Your career, your life's passion or your abouts, you want to help others do the same. What are your thoughts to engineer more serendipities into some of these wacky ideas slash stupid ideas slash you know, out of this world ideas into

[01:52:34] Pablos: the ethos? Well, the, I think the, from my perspective, the most, um, it was a really fundamental thing around experimentation.

Nobody is smart enough to know what is going to work, what is going to win, what is going to be the best. And I say that, you [01:53:00] know, with high degree of confidence that I know some of the smartest people, they just aren't smart enough. And what we would do is look for a way to run a lot of experiments. And I think if you are really smart, that's what you're going to do.

So in whatever context you're in, you will make better decisions. If you run a bunch of experiments, try a bunch of things and pick the best thing that's working the best, rather than sit and try and be real smart and think about what's going to work the best and do that. Right? So, so this is the, a great example of this is visible in, in Silicon valley, you know, in the, in the eighties, big American companies all had like an R and D.

Whose job was to invent the next generation of technology for the company. And they all got their butts kicked by two guys in a garage in Silicon valley, but no money, no resources, no time. But we learned [01:54:00] from that right now, fortune 1000 M, R and D. They shut that down and they replaced it with M and a right that's mergers and acquisitions.

That means, you know, they watch the startups and they watch, and it, like I said, every startup is a million dollar experiment. We watch them all. And when one of them succeeds, one of them spikes, one of them works, we buy it up and then we take it to our global marketing, manufacturing, distribution, all the things that the big companies good at.

Right. And so that's a way of dividing and conquering and a way of doing what you're good at. And in the case of innovation, it keeps big companies from trying to innovate because they suck at that. And there's good reasons why they suck at that, but startups are really good at innovation and they kind of suck it often scale and often, you know, Doing [01:55:00] things, predictably and consistently and all that.

So this is a way to divide and conquer and get everybody doing what they're good at. So I think you got to run a lot of experiments and the experiments are a version of serendipity. It's sort of planned serendipity. It's like, oh, we're going to go find something. And this is really hard to sell to like, um, in some contexts.

Right? So like I, um, I remember speaking in Japan, so the Japanese companies they're really, really good at doing things predictably, not so good at innovation sometimes. So you can't sell them on experiments. You can't sell them on, on, uh, on, uh, but we can do is you can sell them on testing. So I'm like, don't sell your boss on experiments or trying a bunch of crazy ideas, sell your boss on testing, Mr.

Bossman, we're going to test a hundred [01:56:00] ideas and we're going to pick the one that works the best that you can sell to a Japanese boss. So that's kind of how I think about it, you know, in different contexts, you could adapt that, that thing. I love serendipity. I mean, for me, I'm constantly speculatively filling my head with things that I've no idea if they're going to pay off.

I like what I want to learn a lot. I have a lot of conversations. I'm constantly traveling. I move every week to a different city. I try to find the smartest, most interesting people I can and sit them down and pick their brains about stuff that may be is likely to be completely irrelevant to me for the rest of my life.

I listen to pitches that I know I can't back from entrepreneur. You have crazy ideas just to see if I'll learn something right. I, um, I, I travel constantly to find people that are probably going to be irrelevant, but that I might learn something from. So I'm filling [01:57:00] my head, um, just to see what I find, you know, I like to find him make connections.

I'm like, oh, I can't help you. But I better know someone who can, you know, maybe I can make those connections, you know? And that's a waste of time for a lot of people, for a lot of people that would not be an effective way to get their job done, especially if they're trying to do something specialized or specific, but I'm trying, I'm not trying to solve a problem.

I'm trying to solve like all of them or any of them. Right. So if I learn about, you know, different problems, that's fine. Right. I never know when I might find a technology that could solve that problem. So I'm trying to trade on serendipity and do it at the largest scale. I can, there's a limit to what one brain can do, you know, but that's, so that is very interesting to me.


[01:57:50] CK: yeah. One of the things that's really obvious to me in Pablo, what, what you're doing is you're not doing it, just tackling one problem, but you're actually fostering a [01:58:00] whole ecosystem, right? You're, you're, cross-pollinating different people and the resources, you're always exploring different solutions.

You're exploring different problems. You, you know, do other things, you have conversations, you go to different places. One of the biggest, um, so there are two ingredients of, uh, serendipity that I have isolated. One is consistency. So you do the things that you have control over a la showing up, having conversations a lot, keep setting the things, right?

Yeah. And then there's another part is basically that at times where you just need to say F it, you know, you at the edge of like discomfort and you're like, ah, I don't know if I should, like, you're really stretching yourself. Yeah. Right. So th those are the moments. If you could do both being consistent, keeps showing up to do the thing you have control over, and also keep putting yourself in situations or environments [01:59:00] where you have to say,

[01:59:01] Pablos: uh, effort,

[01:59:03] CK: if you can do those two things.

Well, in my mind, that's like the

[01:59:08] Pablos: recipe for serendipity. So I don't remember meeting at Ted, but it's hard to remember people from conferences cause there's so many, your brain kind of loses track. Yeah. But I remember meeting at salsa because you and I are both obsessed salsa dancers. And what you just described to me is.

Was my experience learning salsa because, um, I don't, you know, when I started, I mean, everyone, when they start, you suck and you know, you suck, but you still have to like ask a girl to dance with you, knowing that they're not going to be impressed because you suck. And since I don't drink, that was really hard for me.

Um, I did not like I did not like, uh, you know, making a first impression with someone that is guaranteed to be, to come out, [02:00:00] not in my favor. So that's a, that was a tough experience, but I, and, and you, can't the other thing about salt? Is you can't bring, you can't bring any credentials. That's like when I show up at salsa, you know, I'm outranked by all the Mexican dishwashers, like those guys kick ass at salsa.

And I don't. And so I have to show up and like, I'm at the bottom of that food chain. I'm not cool. Everybody knows it. And you just have to like work your way up. It's a, it's a meritocracy, you know? And I love that and it, but it was hard. It's even now it's hard. Like if I, cause I'm constantly traveling, I go to a new city, you show up,

[02:00:40] CK: wait, wait.

So back up on that sentence, you said you love that. Say more about that because

[02:00:44] Pablos: it's a bit challenging for you. One thing

[02:00:46] CK: I would say, because let's say people get to a certain level of quote, unquote success, you know, then the ego gets in the way of like, Hey, I don't want to be humble in a new environment.

People are judging me. They may [02:01:00] know me from other places. So it's difficult as you climb the social ladder. Right. So, but yet you say you love that.

[02:01:07] Pablos: So say more of that. What I mean is I think for me, it's really good. Cause I'm cheating on the other side a lot, like. Inadvertently became a wildly successful public speaker.

Right. So when I show up to speak at a conference, I'm treated like the visiting rockstar. I'm the one on stage on the one everybody thinks is cool. And, um, and, um, so I'm cheating in that sense. Right. And I can meet everybody and it's an, and I don't have to prove anything. I mean, I'm, I'm on stage, so it doesn't almost matter.

Doesn't matter what I do seems like I must know what I'm talking about. So that is delightful experience, probably unhealthy to do as much as I do it. Um, but what's, but as a counterpoint, if, when I'm go to, when I go to salsa, I'm not, I'm a, nobody [02:02:00] from the start. And there were times, you know, like with salsa in my own town, I could get, you know, people knew me and there was a time when, like I knew all the dancers and all the best dancers.

And I felt like I was one of the good dancers and part of the cool kids club. But when I, but because I danced traveling, every city I go to, nobody knows me. I come in, I don't know, not a single person is trying to dance with me because they don't know who I am. Guy with the weird glasses that they've never seen before.

And so I have to start from scratch every time and work my way up to the GOCE prove that I'm not okay to answer to the better dancers, you know, that kind of thing. And it's, uh, it's I know it's good for me. It's a frustration even now 15 years in, um, you know, and I can dance, but, uh, but you have to like prove yourself every time.

And I just think that's probably like, that kind of thing is really, it's a good exercise for me. Um, and having that experience uh [02:03:00] it's uh, I think of it as a gift, you know, it's like, it's a place I can go where nobody treats me, like I'm special. Um, and it's valuable, you know, and I think, um, there's, you know, I think it's important to find something like that for people, you know?

Um, cause you don't and I, and I actually, I try to do that intellectually. Like I'm, I'm, I'm cheating in some ways because you know, people know who I am or they've heard about one thing or another, I get introduced by someone. Cool. And so a lot of times I, I given more deference than I've earned with them, but what I want to do is get to that point where they don't give a shit about impressing me.

They're going to shoot holes in my ideas the same way I'm trying to do for them, you know? And when I'm trying to get back to. Same dynamic. I described with the invention session. I want to be in a place where [02:04:00] even though I'm with people who are, um, you know, who are, who've earned their place in the room, I want to be in that room, but I don't want to be treated like I, you know, um, I want to have to earn my place in that room, you know?

So I think that's just that dynamic I'm describing as a healthy thing to look for in your life. It doesn't have to be salsa dancing obviously. But, um, but I think that's, uh, that one, I, I don't know if everyone has that experience. I don't know about you. I observe a lot of other people guys who learned to dance, they also drink and that helps them get over the, ah, fuck it.

Let's just dance. And they just liquid courage. Yeah. The liquid courage. And so I'm like, I look back and I'm like, oh man, that would've saved me from a lot of frustration, but I didn't, uh, we feel like

[02:04:51] CK: there's, you know, being able to humble yourself in a big to have that beginner's mind by is that transferrable to your ability to innovate.

[02:05:00] Do you think that's a healthy thing or it's not necessary? And you know,

[02:05:04] Pablos: um, no, better than that. Like for me, I mean, I'm trading on that a lot because as a computer hacker, no one's expecting anything particular for me. I don't have a professional reputation to defend. You know, like it's, it's like kind of like being a scientist, but without all the formal training and accountability, like nobody, I don't know, what's the fucking computer hacker.

So they know that I have some super powers that they don't have. So that helps. So they're willing to give me, uh, you know, give me some attention, but they're, but I'm not trying to defend a title. I'm not, when I come in, I'm, I'm a wild card and I, that is so valuable because scientists and I, I hire and fire PhDs.

I know they suffered. [02:06:00] A lot of times, because they're trying to defend their credibility and it holds them back. They can't ask stupid questions. I can ask anybody in the world, the dumbest question, and it's fine because there's no reason to computer hackers should know, like, what exactly is vital. can you explain that to me again?

You know? Well, obviously he doesn't know because he didn't go to college. I don't know, like whatever. So I've learned a lot about Mito country at this way. So you can, you, so that is a super power that I got that I think is, um, you know, even now like, um, I don't know why I would tell your audience this. It seems like it would be a professional liability for anyone else.

It might be for me there's no, you know, it's no problem. So yeah, I mean, reminds me to ask dumb questions. I can keep that beginner's mindset in a lot of contexts and it's, it's been wonderful. It

[02:06:54] CK: reminds me of the Bruce Lee quote. Oh. Be like water. Oh,

[02:06:59] Pablos: right.

[02:06:59] CK: [02:07:00] Water's formless.

[02:07:00] Pablos: Shapeless. Yeah, you can. Yeah. I stumbled on a version of that.

I stumbled on a version of that. Yeah. So, so,

[02:07:08] CK: you know, and in my mind to me, someone who holds on to their identity, so tightly that it's a sign of insecurity. But if someone is confident in himself and not, you know, if, if I call you stupid, you know, like fucking CK, you don't know what you're talking about.

Right. Because you're

[02:07:27] Pablos: secure with. Right. And I might be stupid about a lot of things to me

[02:07:34] CK: that that's, that's good. Yeah. It has B to B D to have the freedom from once quote unquote professional or personal

[02:07:43] Pablos: identity. Yeah. I think that, that helped me a lot. And the, um, and then, and then, you know, if you extrapolate doing that for a lifetime, at a rapid clip in a lot of, you know, extraordinary contexts, I mean, it's, it's added up to, [02:08:00] to be something unique and now, and that's what I love about what I do is I can now kind of aim that strange set of experiences and, and the muscle memory and the, um, you know, that, that those kinds of perspectives add a lot of other people's projects.

So, uh,

[02:08:23] CK: I'm going to, in a moment, I'm going to acknowledge you, but he was the last question that is, you know, ask you a lots of different things, traverse different domains, right? From your origin story to the laser, uh, shooting zapping machine that shoots the mosquito down to some of the intimate details of what's happening, the meeting, how that arise to the inventor ecosystem.

And to the different management styles that how Jeff Bezos and bill gates look at problems in different timelines, to salsa dancing, put yourself in beginner's mind. We traverse a [02:09:00] lot of different domains. Are there things that I should have asked, but I didn't

[02:09:05] Pablos: ask. Um,

[02:09:13] CK: and then I will bring in, in context a little bit, the audience of people that listen to this are people who was trying to do big things in the world, and they want to do it with purpose. They want to do with heart. They want to leave quote, unquote legacy, right. Being a net positive contributor to humanity.

So that's, that's, that's the kind of people who,

[02:09:36] Pablos: you know, I hear about these philosophies. Here's what I think. Um, there's, uh, the majority of people. Get described that way, um, uh, end up with, uh, a real fundamental problem. That's easy to fix. Okay. The fundamental problem is that [02:10:00] they care a lot. They want to solve problems, but they don't do arithmetic.

So what that means is look at an example, like, um, recycling, we've been recycling for 40 years, 50 years in the U S and we probably shouldn't have done it. It doesn't work for almost anything. Uh, we burn more coal to recycle things than we do to make fresh materials. Um, it has not been a net positive for, for our environment, um, which is sad.

We scaled it before we made it work. And what that does is it makes you feel like you've done your part, separate your recycling out, throw the bottles and cans for that. And that you feel like this is great. I'm saving the planet and you're not fucking saving the [02:11:00] planet. And it's very sad and frustrating.

Even for me. I, I recycled too, even though I know it doesn't work and I want it to work, I really want to solve these problems that we have from, um, you know, the environmental damage from consumption and from how we've been producing energy. But if I allow myself to be sated by the recycling, I may not do the things that would move the needle and really solve the problem.

So I think a very important skill that anyone can learn is to just go do the arithmetic, go add it up, go, you don't even need, you don't need trigonometry or any fancy math. You can just make a spreadsheet and add up the numbers and figure out, okay, is this thing I'm working on? Is this thing I'm devoting my time and effort and attention.

And, and in my being to, is it going to move [02:12:00] the needle? Is it going to actually solve a problem or is it just gonna make me feel good? Is it just gonna make me look good? And unfortunately the answer too often has been the ladder. And so what I really would hope for your audience and for people who do care, cause they're the front line.

We need them. We know the people we need to start with. We need them to help. Solve big problems, right? I'll give you a couple examples in the U S um, we get about nine times as much energy as the average human on this planet. Um, that's why we're rich, right? You can trace almost everything about the success of America and the wealth of American, all that to the fact that we just have a lot of cheap energy and cheap energy means we can build more cars, [02:13:00] drive more places, fly more places, have, you know, organic free range produce FedEx in from other continents.

Like we have all kinds of amazing stuff here. The job, if you want to save the world is to give every human on earth as much energy to give an American. Hmm. Placate ourselves with these ideas that conservation will help or that it will work. It's not going to work. It's never worked. We've never used less energy than the year before.

Right? And there's no in even the most optimistic view of conservation, there's no roadmap that gets us to solving any of the problems we care about. You solve the problems we care about by making carbon free energy, clean energy for everyone on earth and a lot of it. So there's a couple ways to do that.

[02:14:00] Um, the most well known way, um, that it's practical is to use nuclear reactors. Yep. These things are a miraculous energy source. It uses radioactive materials that from the earth that were powered by the sun, that's where uranium comes from. So everything else does too, but you take the uranium and you use it to fuel a reactor.

We built our first generation of reactors with pencils and slide rules with really smart engineers, but they didn't know much in the intervening 60 years. We've built computers. That can model what's going on in the reactor core, we can understand the activity of neutrons. We can design reactors that are safe, that can't melt down.

It's not [02:15:00] hard at this point. I mean, it's work, but it's, it requires no miracles. We could make next-generation reactors. We could make thousands of them. We could solve base load energy for the world with, uh, with those things. But we regulated them into oblivion in the U S in the eighties, because people were terrified of what they perceived as being a massive threats from Chernobyl and, and from, you know, three mile island to things.

The truth is nuclear. His track record has been the safest energy source on the planet. Less people have been injured or died from nuclear actors than solar panels or wind or anything else. Every year, people die installing solar panels by falling off roofs. Um, that's not true for defeat reactors. So it has a safety track record.

Our emotional response to it is related to [02:16:00] mushroom clouds and like scary shit that we saw in movies or this Chernobyl TV series or something. You know, we have an emotional reaction. That's driving our decision making instead of using the data, adding up the numbers and recognizing how many lives we could have saved.

If we had an outlawed reactors and we built them instead, you know how many people's lives could have been improved? How many people could have brought out of extreme poverty. If we had been able to provide energy for them, that's what we should have done. We know that now we didn't know that before now.

We know it. A lot of environmentalists have, have understood this and changed their minds. We don't argue with them so much anymore, but there's a lot of work to do, left, to go change the laws, to get the support, to build those things. That's what we should be doing absolutely every day. Right now. There's no question there.

A bunch of other. That [02:17:00] someday they help. We'd love to build fusion reactors, which are even safer and better, but, uh, they're unproven, hopefully that'll change. But in the meantime, we should be building nuclear reactors. And so that's the kind of thing that, again, you know, people listening might feel like nuclear reactors.

I definitely, you know, they don't, they don't feel viscerally in their soul that like, that's what they want, but humans need to evolve. That's kind of what your show is about. Like, we are, we have biological instincts that do not serve us anymore. We had to overcome them, you know, and we have no, we've tamed a lot of these instincts, you know, we're evolved to like want to kill shit, you know?

Uh, that's not appropriate. Don't kill shit. Let's talk about it instead. You know, we have evolved past that. And then we have other instincts that we need to tame and our emotional decision-making process one, that's not serving us so well anymore. And so I think that in my mind would be, [02:18:00] be the thing that, um, I would hope to convince some of your listeners that they should consider.

Beautiful. Hello.

[02:18:09] CK: Pablo I , just acknowledge you for sharing your heart. I mean, you have no, you acquaintance, right. But nonetheless, yeah. I've never seen you so passionate. So, so purpose driven, you know, I learned more dimensions about who you are, your, your, the way you look at the world just really, really appreciate, you know, being this heart center hacker slash venture capitalist slash inventor and inspiring others to do the

[02:18:39] Pablos: same thing so much for being here.

Thanks for, thanks for listening to all my stories. Hopefully somebody gets something out of it if they don't or free to ignore me. Beautiful.