It's alexa rank in US social media websites is #2 behind Facebook. Apart form their redesign shenanigans, people actually like the product they offer (in contrast to facebook) and they are still growing.
I wish Reddit stays in the kind of "grey" area where it never gets as "official" as twitter, despite the popularity. If anything, that might be entirely its appeal.
That predicament will eternally present a glass ceiling for reddit's revenue, but as a consumer I'd rather see that than it going the full facebook -> hyper growth above anything else approach.
Reddit might be a #1 project out of all the startups ever funded by Y Combinator, but it's unlikely to ever become a top 10 company.
Because as an ad business it can neither match Google at targeting audience by exact user intent, nor Facebook at targeting audience by exact user profile.
In fact, I see reddit more like Couchsurfing: a project which would do much better as a foundation rather than a corporation, based on the role it plays in the society.
At its essence, it's a highly scalable CRUD application, which requires a simple user interface, respectful community moderation, and as little user tracking as possible.
If I had a quarter every time I heard this. You can say that for half of the companies on that list. If Facebook and Google can make so much money from ads, heck even Twitter. Reddit can do the same if they really put in the effort in building a strong ad platform. They are quite comfortable.
One can fold paper planes too (example airplane app)
“Just a CRUD app” is not a good analysis because very few of the companies on this list are based on technological breakthroughs. They are mainly B2B SaaS apps.
The history of reddit shows that its growth doesn't depend on a constant technological innovation, and that it can be successfully supported by a small number of technical employees.
Building an ad company requires a huge number of sales and support people, which significantly increases spending without adding anything to the product itself.
> Seems like if they can make a few hundred million an year they can just be an ongoing business.
That would be fine, but reddit is not Craiglist, which never took any money from the outside. They have raised money at $3 billion valuation, and they will have to IPO – or get acquired by a larger company, again.
If reddit becomes a publicly traded company, it will have to demonstrate the growth in revenue every quarter. A failure to do so might result in the heads of the company being replaced, and its direction becoming unpredictable.
> “Just a CRUD app” is not a good analysis because very few of the companies on this list are based on technological breakthroughs. They are mainly B2B SaaS apps.
SaaS companies are making money by solving easily measurable problems of their customers. Reddit is not.
I derive a lot of obvious value from reddit that's not their explicit goal. It's the best review and recommendation platform on the web for any random product category I can think of, for example.
User profiles are primarily useful to build up a picture of user intent.
User interests, which Reddit possesses, are another way to do that.
It's not obvious to me the disparity in valuation should be so great.
aren't only hardcore pencil users are on /r/calligraphy and weak targets for persuasion via advertising.
I would rather target dabblers not hardcore users who already know which pencil is the best.
If it turns into a Facebook type place with gratuitious advertising, data mining, and privacy concerns it will be short lived revenue in my opinion.
The fun people that create the content and culture will migrate away to other sites, and Reddit will be left with the Facebook meme crowd.
Just my thoughts.
Look at r/all. This is already the set-up at reddit.
Python is also strongly represented, but zero started with back-ends on Java, .Net. PHP, or other more broadly popular options.
This is strong evidence that the startup world is dramatically different from that of enterprises and businesses where tech is ancillary (which dominate total numbers in popularly shared statistics). In many ways it's a vindication of PG's old essays. Though we're not all using Lisp, startups lean towards it.
Alas, with most non-Ruby devs it is nearly impossible to compliment that brilliant, wonderful language (and Rails). It's become popular to look for a reason to hate a language you don't write in, and usually tech stacks are sold by putting down other stacks, like when NodeJS came out.
Also, "dumped" is the wrong word, because you insinuate here that they stopped using ruby altogether. That is not the case; the percentage usage declined in relative terms, but I do not know of any of these companies to have gone down to zero percent in regards to ruby. Which is typical - big companies use all sorts of different languages.
> Alas, with most non-Ruby devs it is nearly impossible to compliment that
> brilliant, wonderful language (and Rails). It's become popular to look for a
> reason to hate a language you don't write in, and usually tech stacks are sold
> by putting down other stacks, like when NodeJS came out.
When it comes to speed, they have a point - there is just no contest between C and C++, when comparing it to ruby or python.
In my opinion, though, most of these who critisized ruby and python, are actually also people who are VERY very bad in either of these two languages. Some of them are still stuck with C and perl, too old to learn anything new. And no, the "I'm gonna learn a new language every week" crowd does not count - I have seen too much atrocious coding pattern by these people.
And of course, everyone understands the speed argument. But that has already been settled. Speed matters when speed is very important. I've seen people
recommend that I stop using Python and learn Rust to create a medium sized API. The average response times for the API that I had already completed was 30ms. That's a fraction of a second. I haven't used Rust yet, so I don't know what the performance difference would be, but why on earth should someone rewrite an application to save themselves a unit of time indiscernible to both the developer and the customer? Even if my load times increased a fair amount, nothing would be lost.
As far as people who don't mind learning another language, I can understand why that's fun, because it is. But when you have work that needs to get done and needs to be done with assurance, you don't have time to learn another language and figure out its quirks, shortcomings, and strengths all while trying to build that feature. My belief is that you should be able to write a language like a member of its community. If you don't have the intention of doing that, then you shouldn't really be messing with it. (for example, don't write Python like it's Ruby)
It has been my experience in New York City that people who criticize Ruby and Python tend to come from languages that are strongly typed and use them at work. It is cool to hate on a language because if you do, then you get to feel better about yourself just by subscribing to another community and hiding underneath that umbrella. You don't have to contribute to open source, answer questions online, or give talks at your local meetup. You get to call yourself a better engineer just by subscribing.
Anyway, I got way off topic. But the point is that when Ruby came out, there were plenty of options. People went with Ruby and Rails probably because it's a lot of fun to finish your work. I know that I really enjoy finishing my work.
That's rubbish. Why should python excel here in biotech
related aspects but ruby not?
Note: I am a molecular biologist by trade who went
into using ruby primarily. I also use python a lot.
I remember the old HUGO project; lots of that code was
written in perl. So why exactly would ruby be unfit here
but python would? Please give your EXACT reasons.
> so Ruby might have had it's day as people are
> building early tech in new fields.
that there ought to be a hype-buzzword trend. The whole
fake AI field ticks me off - they don't understand why
they can never achieve true intelligence, yet they keep
on claiming it. And people parrot how python will be
DOMINATING in the fake AI field. So many fakers.
How many of you guys actually even understand neurobiology?
More technical debt comes from growing quickly (engineers, turnover, employees) and changing business assumptions, not the programming language.
The prebuilt libraries are the main advantage Ruby and Python have. A converter for them to new languages would negate that, though.
And there are many good engineers who are well versed with the language.
While something like kotlin has a small learning curve and gives you a lot of the benefits of scala. And it's backed by google, jetbrains & the investment that goes into android. Most people understand ADTs, nullable types, lambdas and data classes fairly readily.
A more mature company settles into a typed GC language (Java, C#, Golang) and a typed static language for perf benefits when needed (C++, Rust). Yes there are typed versions of various dynamic languages now, but you don't get the speed benefits that the typing gives you, and a large part of the library ecosystem that you will interact with will still be untyped under the hood.
See Rails callback hell as an example.
Now that Shopify, Github is ( or going to be ) Taking more hands on approach in Rails development rather than Basecamp, which other web framework have this luxury of billions dollar companies doing live testing for it?
S. America: 3
S. Asia: 3
SE Asia: 1
Middle East: 1
Also interesting, are supposedly well-capitalized companies from the 2018 list that shut down: uBiome(with a fair amount of attention) and Meta.
Other fun observations might just be how much money people are raising. Memsql was 40 in 2018, and is 67 in 2019. I'm guessing they didn't raise money in the time between, and a bunch of companies did so in the meanwhile.
Also kind of interesting? CoreOS(2018 #42) was above Heroku (2018 #46), but in this year's list is above them (Heroku #71, CoreOS #73). But both were acquired by the time that the 2018 list was made. I'm not sure what this is about, but maybe it's because the acquisition terms weren't all cash, and there were fluctuations in the intervening time in Salesforce vs RHT(and then, RHT got acquired by IBM so who knows how that factors into the present value of what used to be CoreOS). Fun.
I count three startups from India in YC S19 batch that rely on WhatsApp as an auxillary platform:
1. https://vahan.co does recruitment over WhatsApp for low to medium income jobs.
2. https://digi-prex.com is a subscription service for medicines.
3. https://mahamela.in a group buying e-commerce business.
Another interesting point, I think, is both startups from Zenefits co-founders are in top 100: Rippling and ZeroDown; the latter with just 15 employees.
Of the startups on the list, I personally like what Flexport and RigettiComputing are doing.
Here is a similar list of top companies I stumbled upon a year or so back (not just limited to YC): https://breakoutlist.com
With Gitlab perhaps closing #3
1) The below 6 companies will be worth >$200B by 1/1/2020.
- uber 50
- pinterest 14
- dropbox 8
- airbnb 35
- spacex 33
- palantir 26
$166B so very close so far.
2) Stripe, Zenefits, Instacart, Mixpanel, Teespring, Optimizely, Coinbase, Docker, and Weebly will be worth > $27B total by 1/1/2019.
Stripe alone was valued at $35B, so this one looks like a lock.
3) Winter 2015 batch will be worth >$3B on 1/1/2020.
So looks pretty close.
# max(market_cap, enterprise_value) || most_recent_private_valuation
Uber - 50bn
Palantir - 10bn
SpaceX - 40bn
AirBnB - 35bn
Dropbox - 10bn
Pininterest - 10bn
2) Stripe's most valuation is 35 billion
3) GitLab latest's valuation is 2.75 billion
The founders are super smart and accomplished, I even know some people that worked at pagar.me which was big success in Brazil and can say the guys are super hard working and smart.
But I fail to understand why Brex is such a wonderful idea, I worked for years on the payments sector and all features listed are fairly common to all major providers.
Personally I think the fact Stripe launched a competitor will make it hard for them to grow as fast as they might have prior.
In my previous company we were actually building credit card authentication systems for banks and schemes, a private company with years of operation. And still - we werent approved for a card! Never-mind being provided a solution for managing them correctly.
In the end, like everyone else, we had to take out personal cards. The problem was, the company was so prompt repaying our personal cards we could never get approved for credit limit increases. Apparently you have to rack up some accruing debt...
PS Obviously not related to valuation (perhaps?) but Brex has the most refreshingly clear description on the list "Brex does corporate credit cards."
Also, touting how many people your startup employs when it’s in the job destruction business (Cruise and others) seems like an unhelpful metric to put front and center (startups are rarely going to be net job creators, software, automation, all that jazz).
Edit: It’s also odd Docker is #18 when they’re likely about to run out of cash. 
Disclaimer: I own equity in a YC startup, but am not currently employed by any companies in YCs portfolio.
Um, well, yes, in a democracy, jobs created is the most interesting metric for politicians, particularly if those jobs are in their district. Those are their constituents. Do you want policies that are friendly toward tech companies and tech workers alike? Because connecting the jobs with the companies is how you do that.
Nonetheless, I think you have a great point here. There's a subtle positioning difference between "employees" and "jobs created" -- the latter most directly connects a company's economic impact/participation with its contribution to the domestic labor market.
More importantly, it speaks wonders about the culture. If a company can be successful without everyone sitting in a single office, it really speaks to their collaboration and communication abilities, which is harder to gauge out of the gate with a traditional co.
Though I would point out that because remote is a "new" style of work, it's probably too early in remote work's history to use this as evidence of remote work's unsuitability in general. This being because there are likely a number of "tricks" to making remote employment work properly that today's remote companies haven't yet mastered, while in contrast physical companies have a significant and long cultural history to pull the best ideas from.
TL;DR: yes, but I think remote work is also at Semver 0.X.Y right now so we should give it some time to grow
I wish that those types of companies could find ways to generate more revenue and job opportunities and get on lists like this. In the same vein, I think YC has the opportunity and resources to really elevate those types of companies and help them make it big.
“Helion Energy is breaking the fusion barrier and will be the first to clean, safe, and low-cost commercial electricity.”
> One thing to note is that this is not an exhaustive list of the top YC companies. We allowed alumni to opt out of being listed for any reason.
I know it takes time for startups to become successful. it just seems that the pre 2015 era had more successful startups. That would mirror the broader trend we see in the marketplace of fewer and fewer successful startups.
>Here is a list of the top Y Combinator companies by valuation as of October 2019.
Sometimes they start that way, but those are the exception, not the rule. For example, Xerox (xerography) and Google.
Apple did a lot of inventing, but they also clearly stood on the shoulders of Xerox PARC, which did a lot more inventing.
Every other company I can think of is not based on "inventions", but more "bringing to market". Netscape was a great tech company, but they didn't invent the web, etc.
Now it seems like a bunch of micro-optimizations, ways to avoid legislation, or lifestyle products. Not new forms of technology entering the market that really do change everything. The 'change everything' technologies, like Musks' ventures, seem to be a bunch of moonshots (or marshots).
There are also dynamic effects where incremental innovation makes future radical/disruptive innovation easier.
Since most technologies are combinations of previous technologies, it's rare to find completely new technologies/inventions, and that's ok.
The fact that to reach their potential, innovation must be diffused through society also bounds the pace at which it can go. As that infrastructure develops, standards emerge that allow for innovation to be distributed faster. But then, in turn, as the underlying technologies improve incrementally, they also ossify as an infrastructure, which might delay bigger innovations.
The question of where the disruption/incrementalism equilibrium lies and what its ideal position can be is very interesting and, I find, understudied.
Feels like innovation now is making existing products more efficient.
All of those top products do that.
Not sure if that's good or bad.
B2B Software and Services 53
Financial Technology and Services 16
Consumer Goods and Services 11
Consumer Media 3
Real Estate 2
Energy and Environment 1