In this episode, I’m joined by Thomas Hepner to talk about the data economy, Defi, and a whole lot more. You can find his work at https://thomashepner.net/
William Jarvis 0:05
Hey folks, welcome to narratives. narratives is a podcast exploring the ways in which the world is better than in the past, the ways that is worse in the past towards a better, more definite vision of the future. I’m your host, will Jarvis. And I want to thank you for taking the time out of your day to listen to this episode. I hope you enjoy it. You can find show notes, transcripts and videos at narratives podcast.com.
Well, Thomas, how are you doing today?
Thomas Hepner 0:44
I’m doing great. Thanks for having me on the narratives podcast. Well,
William Jarvis 0:48
absolutely. Thanks so much for coming on. Do you mind giving us just kind of brief bio and some of the big ideas you’re interested in?
Thomas Hepner 0:56
Yeah, so maybe I can just start with a quick introduction of myself. So I am one of the two co founders of the data economy index. And that is a decentralized index capturing the growth of data centric web three protocols. That’s what we are calling the data economy. And really, I guess the two things that I’m super passionate, super interested in are what I perceive as the two technological mega trends of the next decade, which is artificial intelligence and blockchain. And the data economy sits right in between those two things.
William Jarvis 1:34
I love that. And can you talk about what the data economy is? You know, I like I’ve always been really interested in finance. Crypto has been interesting to me Bitcoin in particular. been, you know, really following it for quite a few years. But you know, you know, it’s kinda like the web three thing. It’s, it’s this big term that’s popped up there. But but the data economy index, you know, what is it?
Thomas Hepner 2:00
Yeah, I mean, maybe I don’t even take a step back before describing what the data economy is. But, you know, so I actually got into crypto through my interest in artificial intelligence. So So I discovered crypto through. Basically, I worked at Amazon for a few years in finance on the Kindle content and prime teams. And when I was there, I just got really sucked into machine learning and artificial intelligence on this website called Kaggle. Now, if you’ve ever heard of you ever heard of Kaggle? Yeah, yeah, they’ve got petitions. Yeah. So it’s basically these crowd sourced data science competitions. And I think one of the coolest examples I saw was, this person ended up becoming the chief data scientist of Kaggle. But they were able to predict basically, from from scans or X rays, if somebody had lung cancer better than a team of board, certified radiologists. And I saw that and I was like, Holy shit, that is a big deal. Yeah. I got to learn about this. So I actually left my job at Amazon, and taught myself data science by competing in these competitions, and then doing some courses on Udacity and Coursera. And then, kind of while I’m doing that, I found new MRI, which is similar to Kaggle. But it’s for protecting the stock market. And when I was doing that, they’re paying me in Bitcoin. And I was like, I, you know, I’d heard of Bitcoin and stuff, but it’s not really, you know, I’m just like, Why do I have to get a coin base account to sell my bitcoin to get dollars, this is really kind of obnoxious and annoying. And then I ended up getting a job as a data scientist in North Carolina, and basically totally forgot about it for six months. And, you know, then you’ve got the big Ico boom, and 2017 all my friends, a few of my friends who are data scientists, like you got to get into Aetherium. And then come to find out I’d been included in the numerous AirDrop and had all of these tokens, and I had no idea what’s going on. But you know, there’s nothing like somebody just throwing a bunch of money at you and not understanding why to get you really interested. I need to pay attention to this. Yeah. So. So this is I promised this all the tie up here because you asked what the data economy is. But that basically got me hooked into crypto and I was already hooked into AI. And so I started investing in crypto very heavily while working as a data science manager at a fin tech startup in North Carolina for the past four years. And it was mostly Bitcoin Aetherium and then some of these, what I would call like data centric blockchain projects. So numeraire was one of them. Basic attention token. Both of these are in the data economy index, by the way was another augur, which is like a prediction market was another one that I got really interested in invested in and Basically, since 2020, there’s just so much in crypto now that it is really hard for one person to just find like, good things to invest in. Right. And so I, I realized that basically, there’s now multiple sectors in crypto, and the number of sectors is increasing, and there’s going to be more. And as like an individual, you can’t just be like, I’m just gonna buy Bitcoin or Aetherium. And that’s it. So basically, at the end of 2020, I’m looking for a kind of my next adventure that I want to do. And I found this thing called the index cooperative, which is an Aetherium basically uses Aetherium based architecture, to build passive indexes of different crypto sectors. Very cool. And so the first one is the defi pulse index, which tracks defy, which I think a lot is on a lot of people’s radar now as a crypto sector. And I’m looking at that, and I see that augur is in there, and I’m like, augur is definitely this kind of like AI, not really AI, but databased protocol. But then I’m like, why are Why does it not have these other things that I know have a purpose for existing and are interesting and worthy of investment. And so that got me basically thinking that there was room for me to build an index, a passive index that that tracked these projects that I’d been following for years, but didn’t have an index yet. Right. And so, the,
and then I was doing some more research, and I basically discovered that there were a lot of other tokens that kind of fit into this general idea that didn’t have a place. Got it. And and that’s the kind of the beginning of me working on the data economy index. But there’s, there’s a whole lot more there. But I’ve been talking a lot. So
William Jarvis 7:06
yeah, that’s great. And so like, you know, how many different assets do you hold within the data Academy index?
Thomas Hepner 7:13
Right now, it’s just seven to seven. Which there, but there’s a lot more that should be in there that we want to add, and for basically, technological feasibility reasons, we can’t yet but we’re constantly evaluating. And look, you know, following the state of the art technologies in the crypto web three blockchain, you know, whatever buzzword you want to use ecosystem, to figure out how we can add in these other assets that do belong in it.
William Jarvis 7:40
Gotcha. super interesting. So that’s, that’s really interesting. I’m curious, you know, like, this, this may be related, it may not be quite related. You know, I see a lot of defi projects. And, you know, I see, you know, really high yield, right, like really high yield, like, you know, really high API. And I’m like, like, there can’t be a free lunch. Right, right. Like, why why? Why are the yield so high? Does that make sense? Yeah. Is that a good intuition to have? should really or like, like,
Thomas Hepner 8:11
I think it is a good intuition to have. And it’s one that when I was first, investing in define starting to kind of build in it. Yeah, I’m an entrepreneur, an entrepreneur with 2535. That is a question that like really bothered me, is I was around a lot of people and, you know, um, you know, there’s all these like memes. So people will call themselves like ape, or apes, or de gens, which basically just means like, don’t even think about whatever the merits of a project are, just immediately throw some money in it and hope that it skyrockets, which is not at all the way that I invest right? out, right, or think about things. So I’m kind of like 1,000% interest rate, what’s the catch? Right, right. See, I think that’s absolutely a good a good instinct to have. But that being said, there. I mean, there’s a lot of different it’s kind of like, what is high yield mean to you? Right? Like, when you say high, high yields. What was that mean?
William Jarvis 9:13
I think, you know, like, 30% like, seemed like high, you know, it seemed like really, like, I just think of like, so you know, what stocks return 10% a year. You know, like, on average, going back in time, you know, real staggered years or so, yeah, 100 100 years, maybe it’s like a lot, you know, 10 and a half a real estate, maybe bonds are like 5%, you know, so like, this is like, Man, this is like 3x, the average for you know, stock returns, like that’s high, right? Like, which doesn’t mean there’s not a $20 bill on the sidewalk, like, it could be there. But it’s just like, man, like, why aren’t more people picking it up? And driving that down?
Thomas Hepner 9:47
Right. And I think what’s really, kind of an interesting thing that I’ve observed is, you know, there’s there’s this funny meme that’s going around with this. Was it the distribution meme and it’s kinda like The people on the most extremist distribution have the same opinion. So it’s basically like the stupidest people and the smartest people doing the same, the same thing. Yep, the bell curve for me. And I think it’s really accurate with crypto or it isn’t a lot of different ways. Because the reality is that crypto does have real yields that I believe adjusted for risk are way higher, like are much higher than anything else. Yeah. And so using your, like, $20 bill analogy. You know, the way I think of it as is, you know, Bitcoin is still, you know, like, $100 bill that’s on the sidewalk that people don’t, don’t pick up, you know, it’s kind of like, I almost imagine it is, you know, Bitcoin is, is, is this money that’s just sitting on the sidewalk, and, you know, basically, for years, economists keep walking by it, and one of them points at it. And goes, That’s not a real $100 bill, because if it were, somebody else would have already picked it up. And all of its picking up all of them are just virtue signaling with each other. So so none of them actually pick it up. But it actually is valuable and a real thing. And really, Bitcoin is just the tip of the iceberg of all of this
William Jarvis 11:19
Gotcha. Is it something where like, you know, I’m talking to Mark Jasco, Jusco. Soon, he used to manage UNC endowment, and now he has a really big hedge fund crypto hedge fund called Morgan Creek digital. And he was really early to the Bitcoin space, especially for a professional money manager. And I had this feeling that, you know, if you’re a professional money manager, there’s a lot of pressure not to do something that would be considered like, you know, you know, outside the norm or something like that. And so you would probably avoid buying Bitcoin. Is that is that a, a way you could theorize like, why it’s still underpriced, that makes sense that you would buy is that professional money managers don’t want to look stupid, so they just like won’t touch it. There’s a lot more capital avoiding it.
Thomas Hepner 12:06
Yeah, I think that’s a huge element. I think though, Bitcoin is definitely becoming mainstream. Even so though, it’s still, like, in my view, Bitcoin at a trillion dollar market cap is still orders of magnitude lower than where it’s going to be in five or 10 years. But yeah, I think I think there’s like some pretty good research on this I’ve seen shared by, I think Chamath actually, like shared an article, or a research paper, I think Warren Buffett has said the same thing that yeah, when you’re investing with somebody else’s money, you are inherently less risk averse, and more, doing what your peers are doing. You know, because, you know, that’s like your, when you’re investing somebody else’s money, it’s probably your job. So if the people you’re investing on their behalf think that you’re doing something crazy or risky, then that is your job. Whereas, you know, me with, like, my personal money, you know, I’m, like, you know, the most I can lose everything. So, you know, I can make as an individual, you know, more risky bets for myself than maybe I would if I were doing it for other people. Right. Got it, and risky. And I that’s the thing is, I don’t consider Bitcoin even a risky bet at this point. Right. Um, so like, I, you know, I don’t even hold at this point, I don’t even hold dollars, except to pay for living expenses to me, like the coin is, is the savings vehicle. And the other things are actually the investment vehicles, and you’re always trying to out return that coin.
William Jarvis 13:46
That’s super goal. And, and what is so if you don’t mind asking, and if you don’t mind me asking him like percentage terms, you know, what is your portfolio kind of look like?
Thomas Hepner 13:57
It’s over 70% crypto. Gotcha. Oh, wow. Yeah. So and, you know, it’s like, if you’ve ever heard of it, you know, it’s basically a thing where so I think is in 2019. So I used to invest only in index funds. I’ve had this kind of strange arc, right, actually, where I only used to invest in index fund index funds, because I, I bought this kind of logic, but it’s pushed by the money management industry, that it’s not possible to beat, you know, an index fund, right, and, you know, efficient markets hypothesis, you know, and if you’re beating it, you’re just lucky or whatever. And I bought into that for a long time. And basically, around must have been 2018 2019. I just no longer believed this to be true. And I and I thought that individuals can beat the market. And so what I did is I invested over two thirds of my portfolio only in things that I had deep conviction then. So that was Bitcoin Ethereum square and Tesla. And that did did really well. And gave me the freedom to pursue my entrepreneurial journey rather than needing to work in a particular job right now and, and make money to sustain myself.
William Jarvis 15:19
That’s very cool. It’s very cool. How, I guess how sure, were you? You see, I’m saying, like, how sure, were you when you did that? Like, were you like, you know, how much doubt did you have in your mind when you when you went and went and did that?
Thomas Hepner 15:36
Well, when I started, so I kind of it’s kind of a thing where I actually started doing this in 2018. And, and kind of wrote out that I done all of it by mid 2019. So I started with Bitcoin. And what I did was, I didn’t invest any money. So basically, all of the surplus money that I earned or saved over the course of 2018, I invested in Bitcoin. Gotcha. That was all I did I just dollar cost average to the entire year. And basically, my thinking, my just frame general framework was, there’s a 50% chance that Bitcoin is going to be a multi trillion dollar asset, not the time it was maybe 50 billion around there. So I said, basically, the worst thing that’s going to happen is that’s going to go to zero. And it’ll be one year of my life that I wasted. Yeah, but there’s a greater than 50% chance I’m going to get a 20x return and basically earn 20 years back, right. So and I had really deep conviction in Bitcoin specifically. And I was always really interested in Aetherium. But I didn’t, I didn’t have the conviction. So I didn’t really invest in Aetherium in 2018. And then in 2019, when I saw all the stuff that was going on, in Defy. And basically, the Ethereum was at, like the same point, it had been in 2017, when there weren’t all of these applications being built on top, I just, I just said to myself, I’m not quite sure how this accrues value, but right, it’s so clear that there’s so much like talent and energy in Aetherium, that it’s worth, like, you know, putting a little bit of money into, and, you know, in hindsight, it’s like, man, maybe I should have just bought Aetherium and not not Bitcoin at all, but I think they’re both they’re both great.
William Jarvis 17:35
Gotcha, gotcha. Can you talk about token terrier a bit? I think you’ve hit on it a little bit, but I wanted to kind of just box that for people.
Thomas Hepner 17:43
Yeah. So once I decided that I was gonna start making decentralized crypto index portfolios, and I can talk about how they’re decentralized because decentralization is just such a buzzword now. It’s like, what does that even mean? Right. And so token Terrier, is, it’s just my company that I made, specifically to make crypto indices. And what’s funny is, as I’ve, you know, gone deeper into this crypto adventure. Now, I’m like, making an LLC is just kind of a ridiculous thing. But that in, in five years, the, the infrastructure that is being built in the crypto ecosystem is going to fully replace that. So really, it’s almost just like a legal wrapper. Gotcha. You know, something for, you know, to have limited liability with, but it’s not like the ideal way of, of making a software as a service company, which is what, essentially what most of these crypto networks are.
William Jarvis 18:48
That makes sense. That makes sense. So token Terry really was. Well, and you mentioned best, you mentioned, the best portfolio, I guess, I guess that’s what I was, what I what I was asking about Islam. So that’s Bitcoin? Aetherium. Square and Tesla. So right,
Thomas Hepner 19:03
yeah. So I think that’s the new thing. Right? Early 2010. You know, the, the dumb trade was to just buy thing what Facebook, Amazon? I guess you can put one or two A’s, right. Yeah, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Google, and that you would have like, 10 next your money over a decade or something. And, and I think we’re now at the point where best is where Fang was at in like, 2011. Pretty cool. Very cool. So it’s not it’s not consensus, but it’s also now has, like, it’s so big and has so much momentum and attracted so much capital, that it’s clear to me that all of those are going to succeed in a big way.
William Jarvis 19:45
Got it. Got it. That makes sense. You know, what is common knowledge to people in the defi community that you know, lay people would just find surprising.
Thomas Hepner 19:54
Yeah, I think it’s I think the the biggest one and we touched on it earlier was that Real yields in defy, they are real. And they are way bigger than in, in the traditional world. And basically, there’s a number of reasons for that. And I probably wouldn’t be able to tell you all of them. But a lot of it is that these defy protocols are just replacing services that are being done by, by banks. So market making is the great example. And then, yeah, it’s market making, and then trading. So I guess trading and lending are the two things. And so if you can do that, via a defy protocol that doesn’t have this, you know, doesn’t have this huge fixed cost base of all of these branches, and all of these red employees, and it’s just being done via smart contracts and individuals interacting with that, right, it’s way more orders of magnitude more efficient than what is being done in the legacy financial system. And so, basically, capital is just pouring into the space. I think, one of my favorite data points is I remember I wrote this article at the beginning of 2020. And in it, I said that 2019 was the year of defy, which makes me laugh, because there was less than I think, at the end of 2019, there was $700 billion, or sorry, $700 million of value locked in defi. Now, it’s almost 300 billion in two years, two years. And and we haven’t even got a lot of these scaling technologies that, you know, all the big brain people at a theorem and Selena and these other protocols are making better just gonna make it orders of magnitude cheaper to conduct transactions and crypto than currently. So, so basically, yeah, I just see it as like a. What’s that thing? You flip over? And the sand goes from one side to the other?
William Jarvis 22:13
Yeah. Oh, my God. Oh, my God. Yes, I know. I know exactly what you’re talking about.
Thomas Hepner 22:20
Well, anyhow, I think that’s what’s going on right now. Is is one is, is the, it’s just like a black hole of value is being sucked out of the legacy financial system, because it’s, it’s inefficient. And so returns are actually higher in this new system. And eventually, all the capital will migrate from one side to the other. That makes
William Jarvis 22:42
sense. That makes sense. I’m curious, cuz, you know, I looked at I looked at the best portfolio, and I wanted to get some, you know, advanced this conversation. But the transaction fees on Aetherium, were just so high. Do you see that getting resolved? It sounds like you do you do? Like you mentioned that earlier. But do you see that getting resolved in a robust way?
Thomas Hepner 23:05
Yes, I I do see it getting resolved in a robust way. But I think the demand, this is kind of an interesting thing. And I think it’s, this is confusing a lot of people in the crypto space. Is there is so much demand for conducting transactions in the blockchain space, regardless of the blockchain. Yeah, that no individual blockchain is scaling fast enough gotcha to, to absorb it. So there’s this whole concept of induced demand. Have you heard of this? No. So So this example is so imagine there’s like a really heavily commuted road from like the suburbs into the core of a city where people are, are going to in the mornings and evenings to get to work, right. So yeah, the city goes, you know, this is super congested, it takes somebody you know, five miles away an hour to drive into work, we’re going to build more roads. So they build more roads. And it actually doesn’t reduce the commute time. Because it just increases basically, it induces more demand for for traveling on the road. So it just the new lane, immediately fills up as soon as it’s built. And I think that’s exactly what’s happening in in with Aetherium, especially right now, but really the entire ecosystem. Gotcha. And I think that’ll just continue is that the supply will keep increasing, but the demand will increase faster event supply, and that’ll just continue for years.
William Jarvis 24:35
Gotcha. But it does sound like maybe maybe eventually, you can build enough road. Like if it’s just like this, like maybe you can scale far enough where your transaction fees start to go down.
Thomas Hepner 24:47
Yeah, and that’s already I mean, that’s already happened. So I think like you mentioned you try did you try to buy some best tokens?
William Jarvis 24:54
Yeah, I was gonna do that. I was looking into it and I can’t remember but it was like the, the I remember that. transaction fees were just it was insane how much it was gonna be.
Thomas Hepner 25:03
Right. So this is, so for anybody, maybe he’s listening like best token. So this is the Bitcoin Aetherium square Tesla portfolio that we’re talking about basically, I just took that name and made a portfolio on token sets, which is based on Aetherium. And that allows anybody in the world with an internet connection and an Aetherium wallet to create an Aetherium based portfolio. So I did that. And the problem you ran into and you did it is it cost like $1,000 of Aetherium gas fees just to create the portfolio? Yeah, not even to like buy the assets, right. And that’s because the demand for the, the block space on the Etherium chain has is exceeding the total supply, which is essentially capped right now. So what’s happening is you’re seeing layer twos be built. So like polygons, this great example. So data economy index has the exact same problem, right? So it’s built on the Ethereum base layer. So if you’re what’s called minting, if you’re minting the data economy index, which just means going and getting the different tokens that are in the index, putting them together to make the index Yeah, then that’s going to cost a lot of money. So what we can do is actually meant a lot of those units at once, and move them on to an L to like polygon. So this is exactly what has happened. And you can actually with US dollars, go directly to Polygon where the transaction fees are like, maybe 10 cents, I think 10 cents per transaction would be high. So you could buy potentially up to $1,000 worth of the data economy index on Polygon directly with US dollars, at a 10 cent transaction fee. Very cool. And that’s that’s currently currently there. So there’s, there’s this yet there’s this wallet called Dharma wallet, which is for us based users, where you can do that. And that was really important to me, because a lot of what the web three year crypto revolution about is about to me is making sure that ordinary people and when I say ordinary people, I mean people who are not accredited investors or millionaires, yeah, have access to the same opportunities as people who do have connections and money, right. And so to me, it’s really important that somebody would be able to buy $20 of the data economy, or seven. And with these layer tools like polygon, you can’t do that.
William Jarvis 27:43
Finally, finally, that’s an option. That’s really cool. That’s really cool. You wrote a great piece. What is the purpose of wealth to you?
Thomas Hepner 27:54
Yet to me, right. So I think it’s different for everybody. Right? Everybody has their reason for, for making money or accruing wealth. And for me that like reason really started when I was 14. So I was in history class reading ahead, because I don’t know, the class was never fast enough, or whatever. It’s pretty slow, you know, public school. And I kind of have read to the back half of the book, and it was talking about Andrew Carnegie and John Rockefeller, the the robber barons is their, their negative connotation name. And I was just amazed because I, my entire life taken the technology that we have around us for granted, right? You know, skyscrapers, cars, airplanes, all of these things were invented basically 100 year span from 1860 to 1960. And I was like, I want to have that kind of an impact on the world. So it just made me really interested in technology and investing. And so kind of my, my philosophy is that the purpose of, of making more money, creating more wealth, is to create miracles. And so there’s this great quote from Peter Thiel that I love that’s in that blog post, which is basically that humans are distinguished from our distinguished from all other species on Earth by our ability to create miracles, and we call miracles technology. And so to me, that’s, I want to see more miracles in the world. Whether that’s increasing financial accessibility through through blockchain or making people live longer and healthier, healthier lives through longevity tech, or, you know, increasing energy and having it be clean with nuclear power. Any of these things. I want to see technology, progress on all dimensions as quickly as possible. That’s what really That’s what really drives me.
William Jarvis 30:01
I love that. And it does seem like it’s interesting. You mentioned, you know, Andrew Carnegie and, you know, Dukes right down the road, you know, another one of these great conglomerates. Right, and, you know, endowed all these universities, especially in the south, and, you know, Vanderbilt, and I can’t help but wonder, you know, like, it’s interesting you you work in in crypto web three. This is where it feels like a lot of innovations happening. And it’s notable because it seems to be happening because it’s fairly unregulated. And you’ve kind of been able to escape around a lot of the institutions that are blocking a lot of innovation from happening in the real world. Do you think that’s kind of the case, and it’s like a true fact about the world is that it’s just so much harder nowadays, to actually do things in the real world, that it’s just, you know, it’s funneling a lot of innovation towards digital things.
Thomas Hepner 30:55
Yes, I absolutely. Yeah, I absolutely. agree with that. Um, you know, if, if you’re a person who follows a lot of like Peter TEALS, work, he talks about this, like this stagnation and Adams that’s occurred since the 70s. And basically, that all progress has shifted to bits, because you can’t do anything in the real world. So I do agree with that. And I think part of a lot of Kryptos purpose is to improve governance of human institutions. And so I think that’s like this thought I had recently about why have Adam stagnated? I started reading this book, this book in the past week or two called where’s my flying car? Oh, yeah, really, really good book, if you haven’t, if you haven’t read it, and kind of a thought that I had while reading it is, is basically that technology accelerated so rapidly, in that 100, year period, 1860, to 1960. I mean, we literally went from not being able to fly to like the Wright Brothers having an airplane in 1903. You know, very crude, short distances, barely there to, what, 40 years later, we’re dropping bombs out of the 50 twos on the, onto Germany, and literally destroying entire cities with nuclear weapons that, by the way, also did not exist 50 years prior. And so I think there’s kind of the sense that I have is that culturally, society became very fearful that our art our ability to produce technology was was accelerating faster than our ability to be responsible with it. Gotcha. And so right, that’s, I think, what caused the reaction in the backlash that created all these regulatory institutions that basically just halted, outlawed progress, and Adams. And so everything got directed to bits. And I think part of what’s so amazing and interesting about crypto and, and blockchain is it’s actually going to improve, improve governance in various ways. And if you can improve human institutions, then you can basically improve responsibility I guess with technology. And maybe that’s like one of the key unlocks to get get the Adams economy moving again.
William Jarvis 33:32
Then maybe you can just kind of bootstrapping it and get that get that flywheel going again. I really like that. I really like that framing. Are you up for a round of overrated? Underrated? Yes, yes. Love it. Awesome. I’ll throw a term out there, you know, tell me whether it’s overrated, underrated or correctly rated. Give me a sense about why and I’ve got this theory, I’ll tell you this theory that I have. If you believe the efficient market hypothesis, these are probably should all be correctly right. You know, I’m saying but very few people do this. Right. So you know, draw your own conclusions is efficient
Thomas Hepner 34:05
markets hypothesis. One of the things it’s not but maybe it should be maybe it should be first one vastly overrated? Yeah,
William Jarvis 34:11
so the EMH overrated or underrated?
Thomas Hepner 34:15
It’s, it’s, it’s kind of a weird thing. I think it’s both extremely overrated and extremely underrated. But that’s good. So the reason why is, is it’s a good way to reason about markets, which is, which is like, what, what basically you should be asking the question, what do you know, what piece of information do you have that the market doesn’t already have? Or how do you disagree with the consensus Market Opinion in some way? And if and so I think the EMH should be getting you to answer that question. But what it is instead does is it basically cripples people’s ability to actually believe in themselves. It makes you a non courageous person. Gotcha. So,
William Jarvis 35:01
I think they ignore when they see the $20 bill on the sidewalk. They’re like they can’t be there.
Thomas Hepner 35:05
Right? Why when instead it’s more like, huh, like where would a $20 be? $20 bill be or something. Gotcha. Gotcha. Yeah.
William Jarvis 35:14
That’s really good. That’s really good. Let’s see fish, overrated or underrated?
Thomas Hepner 35:20
Are you getting this from my blog? Because I absolutely shun my blog. Yeah, so I really like fishing. I think I like fishing more than eating fish. Interesting night. This is an unfortunate thing. I really like the eating crustaceans, more, you know, crab, shrimp clams. Those are my, my favorites. That being said, I really love salmon. And I love smoked salmon. So once once you’ve learned how to create that, you’re doing well. You’re doing well. So fish overall. Underrated people should like fish more nice. And they most people don’t appreciate fish very much people in Asia might have an appropriate sensibility about fish. But Americans do not. Not here.
William Jarvis 36:04
And do you just like do you really enjoy the act of fishing is about being a nature and like this, like kind of process or what is it?
Thomas Hepner 36:13
Yeah, it’s something I grew up doing with my family. So I have an aunt in Alaska who has a boat in valleys, which is like this huge fishing area. And so yeah, it’s just the thing I did with my family, which is go salmon and halibut fishing as a kid it was it was just a blast. And it’s kind of my way of getting away from everything and, and relaxing. And maybe part of it is like, you know what? We’re talking over the internet right now. So much of my work is through a screen. Right? That it is nice to get away from the screen and just be in Yeah, get away from the metaverse and live in the universe,
William Jarvis 36:55
right. That’s really good. overrated or underrated? Amazon?
Thomas Hepner 37:04
I would say probably properly rated now. Gotcha. I think it was really underrated when I was working there. And now it’s probably properly rated. I think it’ll keep growing a lot over the next decade.
William Jarvis 37:20
Gotcha. Very cool. Well, well, Thomas, where can people find your work? Where should we send them?
Thomas Hepner 37:26
Yeah, so I’m on Twitter. So at Thomas Hefner, and then the data economy indexes at data index can check out my blog at Thomas Hefner. dotnet
William Jarvis 37:37
very cool. Thomas, thank you so much for coming on today. I learned a lot.
Thomas Hepner 37:40
Thank you for hosting me. Well, it’s fun conversation.
William Jarvis 37:43
Absolutely. Thanks for listening. We’ll be back next week with a new episode of narratives.