2. In regards to YC Research, can you tell us anything more about the (general) topic area(s) you will be interested in? And maybe expand a little bit more on what kind of mechanisms might be put in place to facilitate working with outside researchers (hopefully including independent researchers and / or other startups).
2. Not ready to talk about specific areas, but I promise they are interesting ones :)
It will be super super easy for our researchers to collaborate with outsider researchers because of our IP stance!
As for the issue of where people want to live. Vancouver is likely even more costly to live than SV. KW (and southern Ontario in general) is a great place with warm weather 6 months per year and access to the 3rd largest city in North America.
In my opinion, KW would make a better YC V2 location.
I absolutely agree. But YC doesn't need to be where the university is. I mean, people apply to YC from all over the world, not just from the bay area.
Vancouver is likely even more costly to live than SV.
Relative to average income, yes. But that's just because Vancouver doesn't have much in the way of high-wage industries. In an absolute sense, Vancouver is much cheaper than SV.
KW (and southern Ontario in general) is a great place with warm weather 6 months per year and access to the 3rd largest city in North America.
Assuming you mean Toronto, it's only 3rd if you take "North America" to mean Canada+USA and take "largest" to mean "population within city limits"... a definition which says that Vancouver is smaller than Winnipeg, and San Francisco is smaller than Jacksonville. Based on metropolitan populations Toronto ranks 8th, between Washington DC and Houston.
But I would say that Toronto would be my second choice out of Canadian cities. The size definitely helps; I don't think it compensates for being three time zones away and twice as hard to reach from SFO though.
My team is moving to Vancouver in 2 weeks for the reasons you've listed. So pumped for cheap roundtrips to the Bay.
No? Amazon, Google, and Microsoft hire aggressively out of UBC.
Waterloo is an awful place. Asking people to move there is a hard sell. At least people would enjoy Vancouver.
I can speak from Cuba, since I am originally from there.
Cuba has been closed for 50 years to America, but that is changing now. There are really smart people, that just don't have the necessary access to capital or good advice.
Creating a branch of YC there would have a tremendous impact for local economy and people in addition of being a great business venture in a market that has been closed for half a century and is finally open.
It's also worth mentioning that given the current economic situation, funding a startup in Cuba would only take a small fraction of what it takes to fund it in the US, with a lot of potential ROI since almost every industry can be disrupted significantly.
A few years back, only people from universities or other "privileged" entities, had access to it. Recently there have been changes that allow other sectors of the population to get internet access.
Is there broadband? No.
Is it in every home or mobile device? No.
But that is where the country that has been closed for 50 years to technology is headed finally.
This on its own constitutes a great business opportunity for any company that leverages that change, for instance.
"I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been" - Wayne Gretzky (i heard it from S.Jobs first).
Long Beach seems to be starting to embrace the idea with things like its Bridgeworks project http://liherald.com/stories/New-startup-incubator-coming-to-...
I kind of want to start a company myself, there...
I hope it's not UK. Both UK and France, as well as a few Nordic countries are starting to become very anti-privacy/anti-security. I don't think it would be "safe" to start there in the long term.
Go Switzerland or Germany.
It's also a much richer experience for the startups. If you want to be a top of the class founder, you better visit the "startup founder meca" to learn from the best... If they opened a branch in São Paulo, I wouldn't care to attend...
I keep hearing that, and I have never agreed with that sentiment and doubt I ever will. There are lots of good reasons for people to not want to go to SV for 3 months that in no way reflect on their commitment / will.
The fact is: if you want to be on the world's best startup acelerator, you need to live 3 months in SV. Mostly because they can reproduce the experience anywhere else. But they a flexible in all possible ways... (your company can be based anywhere)
More severe commitments are required if you want to excel in other areas as well: if you want to play on the best soccer teams in the world you need to move to Europe; If you want to be a top actor you need to go to LA; If you want to be an MIT Engineer you need to live 5 years there; If you want to be the world's best tango dancer you need to move to Argentina...
But I'm sure that, wherever you are, there must be decent enough startup accelerators nearby. (There are a bunch in my country even).