Kernel + 1

Note to future self…

Today I feel that I had a pretty significant breakthrough in the way I think about building a company. The insight came about as I conducted a brief experiment where I defined a use case for a product in one line (the kernel). Then, I duplicated that one-liner and to the duplicated sentence I added another piece of functionality that increased the initial value of the kernel tenfold (in my opinion). This is what I am referring to as Kernel + 1.

I kept doing this until I arrived at Kernel + 10. By that point the one-liner turned into several paragraphs with annotations, unexplored categories, and ancillary projects.

What I realized is that by doing this exercise I essentially defined the +10 year vision and roadmap for a simple idea in a sequential and logical way. This exercise also helped me figure out what are potential distractions that might seem attractive but ultimately do not contribute to the long-term potential of the initial kernel.

Note: I took this idea of Kernel + 1 from Brian Chesky’s 11-star experience. You can read more about it here.


After finishing the exercise and reading over Kernel +10 or the 11th star experience I got goosebumps thinking about how ambitious and scary it is. Nevertheless, I also fill thrilled about the challenge ahead. I’ve already started to map this vision + roadmap to monetization and distribution milestones in order to align everything and start working towards it. I will keep you posted(:

Now back to work…