ep. 143


a16z's Crypto Thesis | Arianna Simpson, Ali Yahya

In this episode of Empire, Arianna Simpson and Ali Yahya join to discuss a16z's crypto thesis. We start with Ali's network flywheel framework, the future of interoperability and protocol value capture. Do protocols have moats? Is the L1 trade over? Will applications accrue an outsized share of crypto's value?

We then discuss DAO governance, music NFTs, zero-knowledge proofs and crypto's open design space. This is one of those can't-miss episodes!

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(00:00) Intro

(01:14) Crypto's Network Flywheel

(08:40) Is The L1 Trade Over?

(20:52) a16z’s Value Accrual Framework

(28:03) Circle ad

(29:45) Infrastructure Unlocks

(37:55) a16z’s Governance & DAO Philosophy

(44:33) Evolution of Web3 Gaming

(49:19) Music NFTs

(55:22) ZK Proofs & Building Privacy Into Blockchains

(1:00:33) What Feels Obvious That Others Are Missing?

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Circle’s USDC has quickly become one of the most trusted and widely used stablecoins because of its composability, stability and reserve transparency. As a seamless, trusted digital currency, USDC is a zero-to-one opportunity for the global financial system. Check out their Transparency Hub at http://empirepodcast.link/circle that outlines everything from links to USDC weekly reserve reports, monthly attestations, and blog posts written by their executive team highlighting how and why USDC was built the way it is.

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Ali's network flywheel tweet thread


Computers That Can Make Commitments (Chris Dixon)


The Fat Protocol Thesis


The Internet Economy


Commoditize Your Complements


The Myth of The Infrastructure Phase


1000 True Fans


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