New Progress in Tech

In Stripe 2023 Annual Letter, they have a section on new progress in technology, outlining four sectors that breed an optimistic future.

What kickstarted the industrial revolution was not any special knowledge, but just an "improving mindset".

It was not a particular skill or some special knowledge, but a frame of mindβ€”a lens through which they perceived the status quo as being imperfect, and then sought to rectify those imperfections.

– Anton Howes

Clean Energy and Carbon Removal

BloombergNEF estimates that the world deployed 444 GW of solar energy last year, surpassing all the nuclear grid capacity globally. In the US, this translates to ~half of all new capacity added to the grid came from solar.

Costs in both PV and batteries have fallen roughly tenfold in the past decade.

Solar is increasingly the cheapest energy solution.

The learning curve for solar and batteries is showing exponential improvement.

The battery learning curve is as durable as the solar curve, making batteries highly complementary to solar.

  • SolarMente: Offers households green technologies like solar panels, energy storage, and heat pumps with €0 upfront investment.
  • Paleblue: Develops rechargeable batteries aiming to reduce the use of disposable batteries.
  • Lilac Solutions: Specializes in lithium extraction from brine to support the electric vehicle transition.


A single hour of operating a gas-powered mower produces the same amount of smog-forming pollution as driving a gas-powered car 300 miles.

Manna Aero's drones make 7–8 deliveries per hour at speeds of 50 mph and cost one-tenth of human delivery.

Bright Machines operates over 100 microfactories, significantly cutting production costs.

Dexterity's robots work alongside humans in complex manipulations in unpredictable environments.

  • Scythe Robotics: Offers autonomous, electric lawn mowers for efficient, pollution-free lawn maintenance.
  • Matic: Provides a fully autonomous robot vacuum and mop with advanced navigation technology.
  • Richtech Robotics: Delivers a range of service robots including production arms and interactive bartenders.
  • Manna Aero: Implements drone delivery services, offering efficient and cost-effective delivery solutions.
  • Bright Machines: Develops robotic microfactories for diverse manufacturing tasks.
  • Dexterity: Creates warehouse robots capable of performing tasks alongside humans in logistics and packaging.


Per-acre corn yields in the US have grown by around 30% since 2000.

FarmHQ saves 500,000 gallons of water and reduces labor and input costs by 2,000–2,000–5,000 per device annually.

OnePointOne's vertical farm produces 250 times more plants per acre than traditional farms.

  • FarmHQ: Upgrades irrigation systems with remote monitoring and control, saving water and reducing costs.
  • Aerobotics: Utilizes drones and AI to assess the health of crops, improving yield and reducing waste.
  • OnePointOne: Employs aeroponic techniques in vertical farming, greatly increasing yield while conserving resources.

The Abundance of Beauty

Training AI models is time-consuming and expensive, viable only with a vast customer base to cover capital costs.

Modern technical advances are making beauty more accessible, addressing human capital and cost constraints.

AI and robotics are enabling the creation of custom designs and ornamentation on a mass scale.

  • Midjourney: Creates custom AI-generated images for diverse applications, enhancing visual appeal.
  • Suno: Offers AI-generated music, allowing for infinite, intricately tailored songs.
  • Runway: Lowers the barrier to entry for video creators, significantly reducing production time.
  • The New Black: Enables custom fashion design, offering unique, personalized clothing options.
  • Monumental Labs: Develops AI-enabled robotic stone-carving factories, paving the way for mass-produced ornamented classical structures.