The baby boom in Silicon Valley and the future of work and education

Product Hunt Radio

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49:23

Oct. 23, 2018, 9 p.m.

In this episode of Product Hunt Radio, I'm visiting TechCrunch HQ to hang out with two journalists that see more startups in a month than most people in a lifetime.

Josh Constine is the Editor-At-Large at TechCrunch where he specializes his analysis on social products, including everything Facebook. Two fun facts: He's a Stanford graduate with a Master's degree in cybersociology and (like myself) a big fan of live music.

Sarah Buhr is a new mother and, as she announces on the show, is taking a break from reporting at TechCrunch to raise her child. I've known Sarah since she joined TechCrunch in 2014 and more recently she's focused her writing on the wild world of biotechnology.

We also have one more special guest: Sarah's beautiful six month old baby boy, Hayes. If you hear crying and clapping in the background, it's probably him.

In this episode we talk about:

  • The baby boom in Silicon Valley, including some of the coolest tech-enabled baby products helping tired moms and dads, as well as the ways that tech company cultures have changed since their founders and employees started having children.
  • Why it might be possible to beat unhealthiness with convenience. We talk about a number of startups that are trying to get you fit by making the healthy option the easier option, similar to how Spotify beat piracy by making streaming easier than pirating.
  • The future of work and education and how it will affect the world baby Hayes grows up in. We talk about why Sarah and her husband have been debating whether they should be saving for Hayes to go to college, how AR and VR will transform education and how automation will affect the workplace.
  • All things Facebook – whether new startups can compete with the massive social network and some quick thoughts on their first hardware product, Portal.

We of course also talk about some of their favorite products including a robot that makes burgers, a time-sucking app for meme lovers, and a virtual assistant that can do things for you when you run out of time (because you were browsing memes).

We’ll be back next week so be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Breaker, Overcast, or wherever you listen to your favorite podcasts. Also, big thanks to our sponsors, Airtable, GE Ventures, Intercom and Stripe for their support. 😸

Quotes from This Episode

“It's not just about transferring the work from humans to robots, because I think that gives us all that empty dystopic feeling. The idea is that rather than removing the humans from the equation, you instead want to remove the robotic elements of the humans’ jobs so that the humans can actually focus on the most personable, human, empathic part of the job.” — Josh

“Harvard came out with a study that said that lots of screen time isn’t bad for your child — what's critical is that you’re there present watching the screen with your child.” — Sarah

“You can’t just take peoples' livelihood away and give them the money instead, because they’re not going to feel like they have any purpose anymore.” — Josh

“I think what we’ve seen is that even if you make $19 billion off your startup, like WhatsApp, and you sell it to someone else, that means that you are no longer the captain of that ship and you may never get such a beautiful ship again.” — Josh

Companies and Products Mentioned in This Episode

Creator — Robot-made burgers.

Fin — Virtual assistant service.

Imgur — The most viral images on the internet.

Libby — Borrow eBooks and audiobooks for free instantly through your local library.

Mirror — The mirror that's also an interactive home gym.

O.school — Original videos and GIFs to learn sex, pleasure, and dating.

Snoo — The world's most technologically advanced bassinet.

TBH — The only anonymous app with positive vibes.

Thistle — Healthy meal subscription service.

Tonal — Machine learning digital gym + personal training built in.