Some helpful (b…

Some helpful (but not required) reading for your groups. Pick and choose — you don’t have to read them all. Skim them, even. They’re here for you.

These are writings from Y-Combinator discussing startups that should help give some inspiration for moving from thinking like just-another-group project-for-class to coming up with something really innovative and cool.I don’t expect you to actually start a real one (unless you do…then by all means!) but take these essays as inspiration for guiding your groups and later in life.

How to Start a Startup

In particular, you don’t need a brilliant idea to start a startup around. The way a startup makes money is to offer people better technology than they have now. But what people have now is often so bad that it doesn’t take brilliance to do better.

A Student’s Guide to Startups

Till recently graduating seniors had two choices: get a job or go to grad school. I think there will increasingly be a third option: to start your own startup. But how common will that be?

Organic Ideas

There are ideas that obvious lying around now. The reason you’re overlooking them is the same reason you’d have overlooked the idea of building Facebook in 2004: organic startup ideas usually don’t seem like startup ideas at first.

The Top Idea in Your Mind

Everyone who’s worked on difficult problems is probably familiar with the phenomenon of working hard to figure something out, failing, and then suddenly seeing the answer a bit later while doing something else.

Ideas for Startups

why do people think it’s hard to come up with ideas for startups?…What people usually say is not that they can’t think of ideas, but that they don’t have any. That’s not quite the same thing. It could be the reason they don’t have any is that they haven’t tried to generate them.

Discussion Prompt

What do you think about your problem and your group after reading one or more of these essays? Where do you go from here? Do these essay alter the course you were thinking of going in? How so?


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