Simon Willison’s Weblog

Items tagged quora, ycombinator in Nov

Filters: Month: Nov × quora × ycombinator ×

Where can I find a copy of Y Combinator’s user manual (as mentioned in the most recent book by Randall Stross)?

You can’t—the manual is confidential and only available to YC founders. If you want to read it, you need to get in to YC!

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Has anyone been through Y Combinator more than once?

Yes, this isn’t that rare. I think the Hipmunk crew went through YC, despite having previously gone through as part of reddit. The Erics from had previously participated in YC as part of Convore.

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Does Ycombinator accept applications even though we will not be able to work full time on project?

Very unlikely. One of the questions on the Y Combinator application form is something along the lines of “Which of the founders listed on this application are ready and able to work full time on this project—please explain”. If none of your team are able to work full time on the project, your chances of being picked over other teams who CAN commit are vanishingly small.

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Is there a compilation of all of Paul Graham’s essays available online?

Yes: his website.

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What’s my shot at getting into YC or TechStars NY if I am applying from outside the US, alone with both business experience and technical skills?

I’d say your chances are significantly higher than the average application, for both of those programs. Go apply already!

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How many YC companies have tech co-founders?

Ballpark guess based on my experience in YC: over 90% of YC companies have the technical capability within the founding team to at least ship their MVP. YC is really good at taking technical teams and teaching them the business side of things.

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Can you postpone Y Combinator after being accepted?

I don’t think there’s an official policy on this, but I think I’ve heard of it happening so I imagine it’s handled on a case-by-case basis. You should talk to YC about your situation ASAP.

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What’s the real reason for the drop in cash that Y Combinator now gives companies? What really precipitated this change? Were they not seeing the value for their money and wanted out?

I was in the first batch that got the 150k. I believe Paul Graham when he says that the amount was high enough that companies stuck around for longer than they would have otherwise (and founders were more likely to “fight over the corpse”) and that 80k would have been enough to get companies through to the point where they either raise more money or decide not to continue.

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Is it worth accepting an investment from YCombinator if you have an established network in the valley?

Yes. Plenty of the companies in our batch at YC already had well established networks, and they still benefited enormously from the advice and introductions YC could offer.

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Can we apply to Y Combinator on a visitors visa? Or is a work visa an absolute must?

I understand it is quite common for out-of-country YC founders to do the initial three month period under a visitors visa, which is OK provided they do not pay themselves a salary while in the USA. You can get a long way on expenses though.

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