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by Jacob O'Bryant

Software Invention

As an undergraduate, I had a tentative plan to get a PhD in computer science. I ended up not going to grad school because I decided I wasn't interested in doing research. I instead spent an equivalent amount of time doing entrepreneurship, but I came to a similar conclusion: entrepreneurship isn't primarily what motivates me.

I think of invention as the space between research and entrepreneurship. Researchers create knowledge; entrepreneurs create businesses; inventors create things that are useful. In the realm of software, invention has some overlap with open-source. Unfortunately, neither is an established career path—yet.

If we really want better tools for online speech and other software public goods, we need to enable more people to spend their careers developing them.

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