Interesting post on Hacker News today: What’s the big deal with startups anyways…

Why do we continue to preach the greatness, the undisputed manifesto of startups and entrepreneurship in general.

Why are there half-a-million blog posts by some 28-year old on how having your own startup will result in you losing weight and gaining muscle, eating better, dating supermodels with PhDs while the startup simultaneously mows the lawn and cooks breakfast every morning for you.

Why, even when we know that 9 in 10 of us are doomed.

I want to know: Why the hype?

I responded in the comments.

Hacker News is a community of people who have what Dharmesh Shah calls a “genetic defect” that makes them crazy enough to start a startup. It’s true. A subset of the people in the world are crazy enough to do something this high-risk high-yield, and that’s us.

We preach the greatness of startups because we’ve put a lot of things on the line. The opportunity cost of doing a startup is great; the major aspect of this opportunity cost is time. With this time, we could do some consulting, or learn a new language, or go on dates. Instead, we’re fixated on the idea of creating amazing products that change the landscape. We’re attached to the concept of being the ones that enable the software your dad uses to trade mutual funds. We’re enamored with the ideology of being an active contributor rather than a passive consumer of the world we call ours today.

I’ve questioned the strangeness of this enchantment of startups being the road to various levels of success in the past as well. Losing weight and all that stuff is all about discipline, and is an element of really any profession you can think of. At the bottom of it is just who we are and what we want to do: entrepreneurs and to create meaning, respectively.