Fully-Faltoo blog by Pratyush

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24th Dec. 2021

Schlep Blindness

I loved this essay by PG. He explains the concept of "schlep blindness". It explains the reason why no one solved payments before Stripe. Every coder knew that problem. Every coder wanted a solution. Yet no one solved it! Because everyone thought that it was a hard problem. It will involve making deals with banks. And then take a lot of risks because of the flow of money involved. These are "schleps" that hackers like to avoid. But there is a fallacy here. ALL businesses involve schleps:

But I soon learned from experience that schleps are not merely inevitable, but pretty much what business consists of. A company is defined by the schleps it will undertake. And schleps should be dealt with the same way you'd deal with a cold swimming pool: just jump in. Which is not to say you should seek out unpleasant work per se, but that you should never shrink from it if it's on the path to something great.
Another paragraph that really stuck with me was on how "founders grow with the problems."
In practice the founders grow with the problems. But no one seems able to foresee that, not even older, more experienced founders. So the reason younger founders have an advantage is that they make two mistakes that cancel each other out. They don't know how much they can grow, but they also don't know how much they'll need to. Older founders only make the first mistake.

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