How Privacy Could be the Deciding Factor for Data Access with Cyrus Radfar


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Cyrus Radfar is a long-time programmer and serial entrepreneur. Radfar initially studied computer science and psychology at Georgia Tech. His first entrepreneurial endeavor was with AddThis, where he was the founding engineer, led their analytics products, and managed the creation of the monetization offerings. AddThis pioneered the sharing movement and grew to become the largest sharing platform. It was sold to Oracle in 2016. Since leaving AddThis, Radfar has been testing new products and formally advises entrepreneurs building new companies. He founded V1 to share and scale his existing learning with companies who require new solutions to grow and diversify. 

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Here’s the timestamps for the episode: 

(00:00) – Introduction

(02:47) – The future of artificial intelligence is going to drive a huge number of trends. We’re going to be building something to either replace us or replace all the things that in the positive sense we don’t want to be doing with machine intelligence, artificial intelligence, robotics, etcetera

(06:32) – Machines are most likely going to solve business problems. AI in general is going to support and augment us so we can focus more on doing what we love. Augmenting humans with robotics is going to replace a lot of jobs. People are going to do a lot more of what they want to do on the knowledge work side and have removed a lot of work they don’t want to do. 

(08:49) – it’s more of a political and socio-economic question of how do you structure a society where you don’t necessarily need as many people working or doing the jobs people don’t want to do today.

(11:08) – Social media didn’t exist 10 years ago or went well 15 years ago. So the whole term is new, the whole industry and everyone who claims to be in that industry, those are new jobs, and it was created by a platform. Technologists and business in general, eventually, even if the intentions of the founders may not be good, will end up changing things a lot and constantly creating good new things like social media.

(14:50) – Are we going to be more or less human? Are we giving more or less empathy? Are we going to care more or less for each other or we’re going to be more or less competitive because of that? I don’t know the answer, but the reality is we’re going to limp through seeing a generation very soon, like gen Z that has completely been immersed in this thing that we created in garages. 

(16:58) – We’ve raised a whole generation to respond to apps more comfortably in a closed setting than they do to other humans who manage them. And it’s almost evolutionary that we’re almost setting ourselves up for this world where we’re more comfortable with our machines.

(19:27) – The “always on generation”. We’re always being connected, whether it’s through Slack or WhatsApp or Line or WeChat or Telegram the apps just go on and on. We are being connected. We’re being driven by algorithms to make decisions that maybe we wouldn’t choose by ourselves, but maybe it’s more efficient and better.

(20:23) – We’re not moving as fast as we thought we would, but we are accelerating. It is possible that the generations that are born today, our children, could be on Mars.

(25:19) – With faster travel and transport, more people will move away from cities. The future is remote for a lot of companies. So it’s really important that we consider that it is significantly cheaper for companies, it’s better for people to be at home.

(28:45) – All my experience with remote workers is that they’re way more focused. They’re not distracted. There’s not as much disruption on day-to-day goals. They can focus and do what they need and then go on with their lives.

(35:48) – There are so many people who don’t actually have broadband in the U.S. alone. There’s people all over the country and in rural areas who do not have broadband, which is unfathomable.

(37:11) – It’s an unwired world. Some have lived through that transition. The phone, then television, radio, the rise of the internet and whatever wired telecommunications and then unwired communications. It’s crazy the perspective that folks have, who are still living. 

(40:08) – Look out for 5G. We’re going to be more seamless with immigrations for real time data. Perhaps, maybe that’s through the 5G, or more seamless computer vision, getting to self-driving cars or getting to consumer applications that can see things for you or read text for you, or do it more real time. 5G will get us in that direction.