No Market Is Best Market

Marc Andreessen wrote a very good article that introduces a new point of view as to what is the most important factor for successful startups. He says its good market. I won’t explain why. Just go and check out his arguments. I think they are very logical and seem right.

On the other side I am reading a book named “Stumbling on happiness” by Daniel Gilbert and there is one specific topic I want to bring to your attention. He basically says that humans almost never realize what they missed when trying to imagine something. In other words, our brains can’t deal very well with lack of information. The following experiment was done:sets of trigrams (three letter words such as SDF DFU DKI OET) are given to people and at each set, one of them is pointed and said to be special for a reason. As results show, it takes roughly 34 sets of 4 trigrams before people realize the simple rule that governs which one will be special (such as a rule that the special trigram is always the one that contains T). However, when this experiment is done the same way but the rule of the special trigram is a MISSING T, no one ever manages to figure it out, no matter how many sets are presented. Fascinating. “Pigeons have no trouble figuring out that the presence of a light signals an opportunity for eating, but they cannot learn the same thing about the absence of light” says Daniel.

So then what is the connection between the two? I think there are two markets: the ones we can spot due to knowledge, experience, and studies, and the ones that we can’t. Because those invisible opportunities exist, there is plenty of potential for everybody. “And how exactly am I supposed to see what I can’t see?” Easy. Just do things. Plenty of the most famous startups did not imagine their future like it is now. They just did it. Neither Flickr, nor Paypal, nor plenty of others started with the idea they became famous for. But by just starting, they had the chance to see those new clues for new markets that were otherwise invisible.

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