I believe one of the most important qualities for entrepreneurs is curiosity.
If you don’t think outside the box, you will miss too many things that could become important for your own business. Even though a lot of things may not fit with the business you’re in, you can always connect the dots.
What are the trends? What is driving my competitors? What should I do today so that I will still be successful in five years?
You should also deal with topics that seem to be far away. And never become so narrow-minded as to reject new things because they are new and different (in 1998, I “predicted” that I would never book a trip on the Internet, no one needs that. I think since 1999 I only book on the Internet. Since then I hold back on predictions and try to be open to everything new).
In 2014 I heard about Bitcoin for the first time. And bought 0.1 BTC for about 50 USD. I wasn’t at all interested in investing at that time, let alone thinking that Bitcoin could be worth 10,000 or 50,000 USD.
I just wanted to understand what it was. How does one get hold of BTC? How does one raise them? How does this blockchain work? Then in 2017 came Ether, smart contracts, etc. And fun stuff like the “Crypto Kitties.”
At some point it was called “NFT” and I think it is one of the most fascinating trends in the crypto space in a long time.
Dapper Labs is the company behind the Crypto Kitties. What started out as fun has grown into a serious company (valued at over $7.5 billion at the end of May). Dapper Labs has developed its own blockchain, called FLOW. You partnered with the NBA last year and launched “NBA Top Shot” late last year.
What’s that all about? Basically, digital trading cards — so-called moments. Moments are several-second clips that show highlights of individual players and their moves from NBA games. Some Moments can be purchased, for some you have to complete challenges, for some you stand in a virtual queue to win a draw. Each moment is limited. Some to a few hundred, some to many thousands. The rarer, the more valuable. And you can buy and sell moments in the marketplace — just like the stock market. (By the end of May, moments had been traded for over $700 million by 1 million users.)
Curiosity is not only important in business. It’s also important in parenting. Children are curious by nature, and as parents you should do everything you can to keep that curiosity alive. I don’t forbid my children technological developments. I try to make them understand these technologies and use them sensibly. And recognize for themselves what is good for them and what is not.
In March, I told my son to watch NBA Top Shot. He likes to play basketball, and that made him sit in front of the computer until well after midnight on the very first night. Meanwhile he understands the platform inside out, spends about 1 hour a day with it.
For him, it’s nothing unusual to buy digital “items” that you can’t touch. They do that in games on Playstation all the time.
I told him at the time I’d throw in $2–300 so he could start buying first moments and playing around with the platform a bit. Meanwhile, we invested about $1,200, which we shared.
Maybe that $1,200 will eventually be gone because no one will be interested in it. It’s definitely a lot of money. In return, we’re both learning every day — inexpensive continuing education in my opinion. Independently, at 16, he knows the NFT world like no adult.
Right now, though, his collection is worth $8,182. There’s a good chance that value will go back to zero, too. But it’s also not entirely small that his collection will become even more valuable.
At the moment NBA Top Shot is in the beta phase. The basketball crazy Chinese can not yet “play” at all. But that should be possible soon and the user base will continue to grow.
An exciting topic and I remain curious. Next, I’m thinking about investing a little money in “NFT Art” … Who thinks this is nonsense, may google “Crypto Punks” …
How do you satisfy your curiosity? How do you manage to stay curious? What is the topic that drives you? Who is going to sign up for NBA Top Shot now?