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Venture Capital: A financial industry sector where the longer you look at it, the more it takes the shape of a pyramid scheme—especially in VC with a tech focus. Venture capitalists talk a lot and are often talked about, and yet little is known about them. It seems they promise investors millions of dollars for investing in random stuff and give millions of dollars to people with random ideas. But that can’t be. What we know for sure is that the goal is a profitable IPO. IPOs are very rare, and there are several more likely outcomes, few of which are beneficial to people that do IT work. VC lingo is bizarre and exceeds the strangeness of the language that the more conservative classic financial industry uses. VCs speak “angels”, “zombies” and “unicorns” as if they were not fairy tale figures but real concepts. They probably laugh behind our backs when we feel too intimidated to ask if they are serious. There are different kinds of VCs and, as far as we know, some may lead to financial success—but so can a lottery ticket. It is fair to assume that the chances of profiting from VC are higher than in a common lottery, but lower than investing by throwing dice. In spite of all this, some great, huge, miraculous things have been built with Venture Capital.

Voluntary Inversion: Cryptic. The Japanese and the Swiss German languages invert the order of Name and Family name. We say Meier Hans or Nakamura Yosuke instead of Hans Meier or Yosuke Nakamura. Which can be funny if done to a non-Japanese person, but explaining why would violate several iron iA rules.