Welcome to Stratechery

I don’t know much about sailing. So perhaps it’s not the best analogy with which to launch this blog. But here goes…

Sailboats, Ben Thompson
Sailboats, Ben Thompson

A simple image. Two boats, and a big ocean. Perhaps it’s a race, and one boat is winning — until it isn’t, of course. Rest assured there is breathless coverage of every twist and turn, and skippers are alternately held as heroes and villains, and nothing in between.

Yet there is so much more happening. What are the winds like? What have they been like historically, and can we use that to better understand what will happen next? Is there a major wave just off the horizon that will reshape the race? Are there fundamental qualities in the ships themselves that matter far more than whatever skipper is at hand? Perhaps this image is from the America’s Cup, and the trailing boat is quite content to mirror the leading boat all the way to victory; after all, this is but one leg in a far larger race.

It’s these sorts of questions that I’m particularly keen to answer about technology. There are lots of (great!) sites that cover the day-to-day. And there are some fantastic writers who divine what it all means. But I think there might be a niche for context. What is the historical angle on today’s news? What is happening on the business side? Where is value being created? How does this translate to normals?

Some topics I look forward to exploring:

  • How a company’s “founding myth” shapes its product decisions
  • Why Wall Street is not completely insane
  • Why Samsung has come to dominate Android
  • Was Android a good idea?
  • Why ChromeOS is a very big deal
  • Why Windows beat the Mac (hint: it was never a contest)
  • What is going on with Windows 8?

I do still have a day job, but I’m committing to at least one of these bigger picture topics a week. Keep up @stratechery, with RSS, a weekly email summary, or simply bookmark this page.

I look forward to making it worth your attention.