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Enter the Uncharted Territories of the 21st Century
How to Win in the World of Tomorrow
Hello! I have great news. Today, I’m launching Uncharted Territories, a newsletter to figure out how to win in the world of tomorrow.
Until last year, I was a VP of Product and Growth in Silicon Valley tech companies, with a blog on the side. Then, I wrote a few COVID articles, and my life exploded. They gathered over 60 million views. My theories, such as the Hammer and the Dance, were quoted by governments around the world. I talked with presidents and news anchors, gathered 70k followers, over 40 million impressions on Twitter… and, more importantly, tens of thousands of interesting, committed email subscribers.
Pandemic management advice wasn’t my job, but I did it anyway, part-time. To write about the pandemic, I didn’t sleep for months, because I thought I could contribute in a moment of need. Everybody has a superpower. Mine is to take new, hairy problems, analyze them in-depth to understand them, figure out a solution, and turn around to explain the whole process. I had a unique opportunity to apply it to make the world better than I found it. I took it.
The coronavirus is an outlier though. It is the one problem the entire world had to focus on for a concentrated period of time. But it—and pandemics in general—are not the only problems in the world. COVID is an urgent problem, but not the most important. Over the last few years, I’ve obsessed about the most important, intractable problems we face as a society and as individuals. Because if we correctly identify the nature of those problems, we can figure out where the world is going, how to improve it, and how to navigate it for ourselves in the process.
These problems are multiplying everywhere. Have you noticed how it feels like the world is mutating faster and faster? Like we can’t keep up with what’s happening.
I believe this is just the beginning.
I believe that some of us alive today will live forever. Maybe you, reading this.
I believe AI will make our lives unrecognizably better. It will also push many into poverty.
I believe wealth will keep concentrating in the hands of a few, especially the hands of builders of aggregators.
I believe nation-states will drift into irrelevance.
I believe geography will matter less and less.
I believe remote work will do to white collar workers what offshoring and automation have done to blue collar workers over the last 50 years.
I believe Bitcoin will replace gold, cryptocurrencies will replace fiat currencies, and smart contracts will upend how we deal with each other.
I believe tech corporations scientifically enslave us into unhappiness.
I believe Global Warming is a social organization issue.
I believe we don’t fathom yet the consequences of fertility collapse and are utterly unprepared for it.
I believe most people are not developing the crucial skills they will need to surf these trends. Instead, these trends will overwhelm and crush them.
I believe all these themes are interconnected.
We’re entering a world of change, full of unknowns that will challenge everything about how we live and work. We’re entering uncharted territories.
To navigate these trends, we need two things: Predict the future and adapt to it. This is what I want to do with you: Explore these uncharted territories to know how we can prepare for them.
What you’ve read from me is just the beginning. I’ve been studying these topics for years and have already written over 500 pages of unpublished content about topics such as automation, inequality, productivity, or how to develop personal skills to navigate this new world.
Last year’s explosion of my COVID articles was a hint that maybe I should focus on all these topics. But I never found the time, reason, or guts to do it. So when Substack reached out a few months ago to support me in this adventure, I decided to jump in.
If you want to know how to win in the world of tomorrow, and to support me while we explore this together, this is your newsletter.
So What Should I Expect as a Subscriber of Uncharted Territories?
“The Future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed.”—William Gibson
Here’s how the newsletter is going to work:
The world is changing ever faster. Those who can keep up will have opportunities beyond their dreams and will be able to shape the future. The rest will fall by the roadside.
Some of my articles will be about understanding the current trends that determine the future, so we can predict what happens next. They will touch on themes such as automation, remote work, cryptocurrencies, the end of nation-states, aging, inequality…
These articles should help you understand the news in a way that you didn’t before. Better, they will help you shut down the noise and focus on the few things that matter, the trends that will overwhelm the world, not the daily churn of useless clickbait.
Other articles will be about the decisions we need to make and the skills we need to develop to prepare for that future. They will touch themes like problem-solving, persuasion, storytelling, versatility, productive conversations, negotiation…
Most weeks, you will receive a free article and a premium article. Both will cover the same general themes.
If you are receiving this email, you subscribed to my newsletter over the last year, and you will automatically receive the free emails.
Why Become a Premium Subscriber?
If you are considering becoming a premium subscriber, this is what you will get:
Some weeks, your premium articles will dive one layer deeper than the free one, cover a different angle, add context, connect the dots, share what happens behind the scenes, uncover the underlying patterns.
Other times, you will read the edgiest, more radical, and more exploratory ideas.
As a premium subscriber, I want you to form a community where we think together about these ideas.
We will have monthly conversations. In some cases, one on one.
You will also be the first ones to try new things, such as launching a social currency or an NFT together.
You will help me pick the next topics to explore.
And more importantly, you will help support me to make sure I can keep this up.
Can You Give Us Examples of Articles?
I have worked over the last few years on more than a couple hundred unpublished articles. Here is a small sample of them, which you can expect in your inbox in the coming weeks and months.
As a premium subscriber, one of the perks is the opportunity to vote for the articles you want me to focus on.
But Who Are You, Tomas?
I’ve spent over a decade career building tech products in Silicon Valley, during which I learned about applied psychology, designed thousands of user experiences, tested them on real customers—maybe you—and got exposed to the world of tomorrow.
Before that, I got an MBA from Stanford and two MSc in Engineering, from Ecole Centrale Paris and ICAI Madrid. Throughout all this time, I’ve been creating content on the side.
You probably know me from my COVID articles, such as:
Coronavirus: Why You Must Act Now (40M views, most read Medium article of 2020)
Coronavirus: The Hammer and the Dance (20M views, 4th most read Medium article of 2020)
The Fence (data visualization article with the New York Times)
Out of Many, One (>500k views)
Learning How to Dance (>600k views)
Should We Aim for Herd Immunity like Sweden? (>250k views)
The Swiss Cheese Strategy
And other COVID articles.
But COVID was just one of many topics I’ve covered.
My over 500 pages of unpublished content, written over the last 10 years, correspond to ~200 pages of blog posts drafts (from which you saw a sample earlier), and the rest is from a book I started on automation, AI, inequality, and the impact of such issues on politics.
After all this time and content, I realized it was time to go all in on this. That’s why I’m jumping in and launching Uncharted Territories. I hope this is as exciting for you as it is for me. If it is, help me make this a reality and become a premium subscriber. I look forward to living this adventure together!
This should be fun.