Vinod Khosla quotes:

  • Seeking an acquisition from the start is more than just bad advice for an entrepreneur. For the entrepreneur it leads to short term tactical decisions rather than company-building decisions and in my view often reduces the probability of success.

  • Religion asks you to believe things without questioning, and technology and science always encourage you to ask hard questions and why it is important in science and technology. So I was always interested in science and technology.

  • Is it 10 years, 20, 50 before we reach that tipping point where climate change becomes irreversible? Nobody can know. There's clearly a probability distribution. We need to ensure this planet, and we need to do it quickly.

  • Electric cars are coal-powered cars. Their carbon emissions can be worse than gasoline-powered cars.

  • Imagine the world of mobile based on Nokia and Motorola if Apple had not been restarted by a missionary entrepreneur named Steve Jobs who cared more for his vision than being tactical and financial.

  • In my view, it's irreverence, foolish confidence and naivety combined with persistence, open mindedness and a continual ability to learn that created Facebook, Google, Yahoo, eBay, Microsoft, Apple, Juniper, AOL, Sun Microsystems and others.

  • Now it will take a long time to scale biofuels, but I'm the only one in the world forecasting oil dropping in price to $35 a barrel by 2030. I'll put it on the record: Oil will not be able to compete with cellulosic biofuels. If you do it from food, the food will get so expensive you can't make fuel out of it.

  • The winter period between September and March in this country, when land sits fallow and is subject to topsoil loss, we could be enriching the soil and growing all the biomass we need to replace imported gasoline.

  • Entrepreneurs have the flexibility and the ability to do things that large companies simply cannot. Could a large company pull off a trick like Amyris, going from anti-malaria medicine to next-generation fuel?

  • Will biofuel usage require land? Absolutely, but we think the ability to use winter cover crops, degraded land, as well as using sources such as organic waste, sewage, and forest waste means that actual land usage will be limited. Just these sources can replace most of our imported oil by 2030 without touching new land.

  • Everybody else is afraid to fail. I do not really care because when I fail, I try something new.

  • For electric power generation, we are very optimistic about solar-thermal technology, and we're intrigued by the potential of enhanced geothermal energy to replace coal-based power generation. Traditional carbon capture and sequestration-based coal power generation is somewhat unlikely to be competitive.

  • Startups allow technologists and scientists to take risks and change plans in a way that would be frowned upon in a big company. Having said that, big companies will play a key role in certain areas and in partnerships with little companies. Each has its strengths.

  • I generally disagree with most of the very high margin opportunities. Why? Because it's a business strategy tradeoff: the lower the margin you take, the faster you grow.

  • Certain food-based biofuels like biodiesel have always been a bad idea. Others like corn ethanol have served a useful purpose and essentially are obsoleting themselves.

  • I don't believe - till something radical changes that we are not on track to do - that hybrids are material to climate change. They're fashionable, everybody loves them, the Prius is selling well, but so are Gucci bags. But they don't impact the way the world carries stuff. You know it's a fashion statement.

  • You know, one of the great things about most renewable technologies - not every technology, but many of them - is the jobs have to be local. When you're talking about a power plant and power generation using solar thermal technology, the jobs will be where the plant is.

  • I do not know what got me interested in technology. What was very clear to me very early on was that I was not interested in religion and that naturally increased my curiosity about science and technology, and I fundamentally believe the two are conflicting.

  • I'm not a political person. I'm a techie nerd, and I enjoy the techie part. I mean, all my life, I've loved great technology.

  • If you have a carbon cap and trade system, there'd be an agreed-to limit the amount of carbon we emit. That changes the economic picture for fossil technologies and for the renewable technologies. It makes the renewable technologies more attractive and the fossils less attractive.

  • Electric cars are coal-powered cars. Their carbon emissions can be worse than gasoline-powered cars."

  • I believe cellulosic fuels, biofuels made from nonfood crops are the only solution that will make a difference.

  • The world is hung up on food-based biofuels. Not only are they the wrong thing, they're the uneconomic thing.

  • My willingness to fail gives me the ability to succeed.

  • By 2025, 80 percent of the functions doctors do will be done much better and much more cheaply by machines and machine learned algorithms,

  • Your cellphone has 10 sensors, and your car has 400. But your body has none - that's going to change.

  • An entrepreneur is someone who dares to dream the dreams and is foolish enough to try to make those dreams come true.

  • The first rule of venture capitalism is hands-on experience. You have to get your hands dirty.

  • The only way you multiply resources is with technology. To really affect poverty, energy, health, education, or anything else - there is no other way.

  • If you have a carbon cap and trade system, there'd be an agreed-to limit the amount of carbon we emit. That changes the economic picture for fossil technologies and for the renewable technologies. It makes the renewable technologies more attractive and the fossils less attractive."

  • What an entrepreneur does is to build for the long run. If the market is great, you get all of the resources you can. You build to it. But a good entrepreneur is always prepared to throttle back, put on the brakes, and if the world changes, adapt to the world.

  • If everyone played it safe, we wouldn't get anywhere.

  • I've probably failed more often than anybody else in Silicon Valley. Those don't matter. I don't remember the failures. You remember the big successes.

  • Any problem is an opportunity. The bigger the problem, the bigger the opportunity.

  • As for companies invested in the space - I think its important to distinguish between a good investment and a material climate change technology - you can have the first without the second, even in the "clean tech" space.

  • Big data will replace the need for 80% of all doctors

  • Climate deniers are clearly the fringe group and need to see a proctologist to find their heads.

  • Communication always changes society, and society was always organized around communication channels. Two hundred years ago it was mostly rivers. It was sea-lanes and mountain passes. The Internet is another form of communication and commerce. And society organizes around the channels.

  • Every big problem is a big opportunity.

  • Future is not extrapolation of past

  • How would you compete against yourself?

  • I don't mind failing, but if I succeed it better be worth succeeding for.

  • I don't mind the low probability of success, but it better be impactful if we do succeed.

  • If I collected all the diamonds in the world, I'd have no 'income' but I'd have a lot of 'assets'. Would my company be worth nothing because I have no income? A lot of Net companies are collecting assets. They have to be measured with a new set of metrics.

  • If I wanted to be a doctor today I'd go to math school not med school.

  • If you're going to re-invent healthcare you have to start from scratch.

  • I'm a fiscal hawk. I vote against all taxes, but I do believe the environment, and climate change, is a bigger issue than fiscal deficits are as a risk to the nation.

  • In the next 10 years, data science and software will do more for medicine than all of the biological sciences together.

  • It doesn't matter what your probability of failure is. If there's a 90% chance of failure, there's a 10% chance of changing the world.

  • It is important in any population to have an ecosystem around start-up ideas to leverage the most out of them such an ecosystem needs developing and most of this is about giving entrepreneurs confidence.

  • Letting the perfect be the enemy of the good is one of the reasons we have a coal-dependent infrastructure, with the resulting environmental impact that all of us can see. I suspect environmentalists, through their opposition of nuclear power, have caused more coal plants to be built than anybody. And those coal plants have emitted more radioactive material from the coal than any nuclear accident would have.

  • Maybe some percentage that's substantially larger than 95 percent of VCs add zero value. I would bet that 70-80 percent add negative value to a startup in their advising.

  • No one will pay you to solve a non-problem.

  • Not thinking it's possible is a failure of imagination.

  • Oil replacements and then efficiencies in engines and housing and the way we build houses is a very interesting market.

  • One of the best things data can enable us to do is to ask questions we didn't know to ask.

  • Screw up often; but screw up ahead of everybody else, and than learn as much, and than use it to make subsequent investments.

  • Setting an aggressive enough carbon-reduction goal will result in an appropriate price for carbon and will help many a renewable technology. Consumer education will help. Most importantly, though, will be the continually declining cost trajectory of the real breakthrough in clean-technology costs driven by research and innovation. In the end, private capital is the real barometer of change.

  • Spreadsheets are fiction. Believing in what you're doing and what you're building is what's important.

  • Success comes to those that dare to dream dreams and are foolish enough to try and make them come true.

  • The right way to build a company is to experiment in lots of small ways, so that you have plenty of room to make mistakes and change strategies.

  • The state of healthcare today is that we are busy in the practice of medicine vs. being in the science of medicine.

  • The U.S. has fallen well behind Europe in recognizing climate change and the implications of climate change.

  • The willingness to fail gives us the freedom to succeed.

  • There are parts of the country in America, in the Midwest, where wind is a big resource, and we should absolutely use it. But to try and apply it nationally doesn't make sense. There are technologies that will work that are appropriate to certain regions.

  • There's no doubt in my mind over the next 25 years how we drive, how we build our houses, how we fly, how we build our buildings, will all change.

  • We don't need a fuel that's cleaner, we need a fuel that happens to be cleaner, but is half the price of oil.

  • We humans think linearly but tech trends are exponential.

  • Where most entrepreneurs fail is on the things they don't know they don't know.

  • You have to invent the future you want.

  • You need a degree of foolishness to cause disruptive change in healthcare. Dare to dream.