October 18-20 | Tucson, AZ

The Research Institution GAP Fund and Accelerator Program Summit

[Recommended Watch for Our Community] ‘The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley

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October 18-20, 2023 / Tucson, AZ
The annual summit for research institution gap fund and accelerator programs, including proof of concept programs, startup accelerators, and university venture funds

The Story

I like movies. Especially those that take you on a rollercoaster that leaves you walking away with a mixed bag of unresolved thoughts/feelings/ideas. Movies that make you think.

I highly recommended cautionary documentary and the rise and fall of Theranos.

Theranos was an extreme case of potential fraud, patient abuse, and it seems like a very bad mark on the already highly-risky setting that we all deal with day-to-day.

So many themes to unwrap relative to our space in early-stage, disruptive innovation that are likely taking place in completely legal operations…

A few things I thought about (in the first 30 min):

  • What is the proper way to make the “impossible” happen while maintaining the momentum in the now— near-term expectations of the shareholders, the breaking media, and perceptual comptetive barriers?
  • Is the Silicon Valley culture and investor pool the right fit for biotech?
  • “Successful” people are also not as good as they think at reading people
  • Any sort of barrier between the actual technical realities and the lead marketing teams is disastrous. It’s especially bad when the executives move fully from the former to the latter.
  • If real, disruptive innovation more towards the goal of becoming Hollywood famous vs. down and dirty, make it happen garage work…things could get bad.

All that said, I was also uncomfortable by how excited I was with the aspiring goals of Theranos, and the drive not to just make better, but to revolutionize. We should all aspire to that in whatever we do…but just in a legit way.



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