Stripe Atlas with Patrick McKenzie

Starting an Internet business is harder than it should be. You need to incorporate, create an operating agreement, set up a system to accept payments, and many other straightforward tasks.

In the 1990s, this was how it felt to set up anything on the Internet. You always had to stand up a web server on your own infrastructure, before you could get to the interesting part–which was building an actual product. With the popularization of cloud computing, it became massively easier to stand up a server. Because of that lower activation energy, millions of applications and thousands of software businesses got started.

But the activation energy required to start a business remains higher than necessary. It feels like standing up a web server in the 90s–lots of tedium and reinventing the wheel that has been done by people before you. This is the motivation behind Stripe Atlas, a project to simplify the process of starting an Internet business.

Patrick McKenzie works on Atlas at Stripe. He was previously on the show to discuss his experience leaving a large corporation to work on his own small software companies. And his name has become synonymous with the modern phenomenon of the small software company–he has been writing about this topic for over a decade at

It was great to talk to Patrick once again about Internet businesses, and I’m excited to see Stripe Atlas become something huge.


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