Comparing Apple to Netflix is like comparing apples to oranges, especially if the oranges made so many mistakes that people stopped eating oranges and just went back to Blockbuster.
When we think about online learning, it's such 'early days.' Bill Gates is a wildly smart insightful guy. Yet, even a guy as smart and insightful as that, 30 years ago can say things like, 'Who's every going to need more than 640K of memory?'
I founded Netflix. I've built it steadily over 12 years now, first with DVD becoming profitable in 2002, a head-to-head ferocious battle with Blockbuster and evolving the company toward streaming.
Most companies that are great at something - like AOL dialup or Borders bookstores - do not become great at new things people want (streaming for us) because they are afraid to hurt their initial business.
So much of the downstream revenue is linked to that initial excitement, to how much revenue is produced in the domestic box office. For example, what we pay for a film three years later is highly correlated to how well it did in the box office.
We are seeing the beginning of things. Web 2.0 is broadband. Web 3.0 is 10 gigabits a second.
Stone Age. Bronze Age. Iron Age. We define entire epics of humanity by the technology they use.
Think of Internet on the TV like the Web browser. The amount of time you spend on the PC in the browser is just going to grow continuously.
I'm an HBO subscriber, and I watch a bunch of great shows on HBO.
My first company, Pure Software, was exciting and innovative in the first few years and bureaucratic and painful in the last few before it got acquired. The problem was we tried to systemize everything and set up perfect procedures.
About half my work in education is U.S. political reform around school districts and charter schools, and creating more room for entrepreneurial organizations to develop. And about half on technology, which I look at as a global platform.
The Costa Rican government is prioritizing laying fiber optic over paving roads. Costa Rica is trying to become one of the Internet societies. This is happening throughout the world.
Most entrepreneurial ideas will sound crazy, stupid and uneconomic, and then they'll turn out to be right.
School districts in the US don't adopt technology very quickly.
It turns out that all Netflix streaming peak on Saturday night can fit inside a single fiber optic, which is the size of one human hair.
In hindsight, I slid into arrogance based upon past success.
In fact, technology has been the story of human progress from as long back as we know. In 100 years people will look back on now and say, 'That was the Internet Age.' And computers will be seen as a mere ingredient to the Internet Age.
I watch mostly independent films.
Well, we're about 24 million subscribers today, and that's up from about 15 million a year ago, so it's a very high rate of growth, and that's what's exciting about the business - more and more people are getting smart TVs, they're watching Netflix on their iPads.
Great leaders, like Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos, also focused on the long term.