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So my question is about YC Research. You said in that earlier thread you will be hand picking the people. How exactly do you intend to do that if you don't me asking? Are you partnering with schools? Are they going to be recommended? Do you already have a database?

Mostly the algorithm was to ask very smart people "who are the top 3 smartest people you know in area X" and then go after the people whose names kept coming up.

This approach won't work if you are looking for academic diamonds in the rough. The names that will get mentioned are probably already scoring big grants and pumping out well-received publications.

If you are really actually looking for long-shots by talented people, you're going to have to access the people nobody is going to mention for fear of marking themselves as a radical or an urchin-lover. Science is packed with these humble types, but they are invisible because of how brightly the superstars (who frequently stand on the shoulders of the more humble) shine.

As an aside, smartness is certainly helpful for research endeavours, but pridelessness is actually what separates the people jousting against windmills and people traveling the hero's journey. The smartest are frequently targeting windmills thinking that they'll be the ones to finally succeed, whereas the prideless are more interested in understanding and exploiting molehills or anthills. Pridelessness allows for maximum flexibility in following reality, preventing ego-driven attachments to incorrect interpretations.

@Sama,thanks for the answer.

Not a complete answer at all, but it looks like the former CTO of stripe, Greg Brockman, is going to be involved[1]. I assume to start they're gonna look at people close to the YC network?


@Tristanho, thanks for the answer and the link.

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