Dr. Benjamin Wolba is a physicist and investor at Lunar Ventures, passionate about new technologies and impactful innovation.
Since the spring of 2022, he has been writing the Future of Computing blog, interviewing startup founders and industry experts about the latest trends and technologies and how they’re shaping the future of how we process information.
We hope that this interview will give you a better understanding of Benjamin’s work with the blog and beyond.
Tell us about yourself – who is Benjamin Wolba?
Hey there, I'm Benjamin.
My background is in physics, as I am driven by a curiosity about the universe and a desire to understand how things work.
The other part of me is really into creating something that positively impacts the world.
During my Ph.D., I got fascinated by startups as a way to bring new technologies to the market and advance humanity, and as cliche as it sounds, ‘do something good for the world.’
Simply put, my mission is to deal with all these new technologies and innovations and see how they could be helpful for everyone.
What inspired you to start the “Future of Computing” blog?
The story begins in 2021.
I had wanted to start a blog for a long time but lacked a common theme to write about.
Fast forward to when I joined Lunar Ventures in 2022, I noticed that most of what we were concerned with had to do with the future of computing.
So, that’s how the idea for "Future of Computing" was born—a blog that would interview founders about how they’re shaping the future of computing.
Now, 75+ interviews later, it's buzzing! The blog is read by more than 15,000 people every month, and I have an amazing lineup of new and insightful interviews.
How would you explain to your grandparents what you do for a living?
That's a good one!
My day job is working in venture capital, where we look for small companies with a lot of potential and help them fulfill that potential to grow into a big and successful business.
Once we find such a ‘startup’ and believe in the opportunity, we invest money into it early on and then help it with advice as it evolves. So, I would tell my grandparents I'm a bit like a scout and tech consultant for small companies with great growth potential.
But unlike traditional consulting, we have a stake in the companies we advise – so our interests align to develop a successful business.
What’s the wildest prediction for the Future of Computing?
One of the wildest but still reasonable predictions, say in 10 years, is that optical computing will take over electronic computing.
Basically, your laptop could be running on an optical processor, using light to process information and thus operating at the speed of light – and nothing is faster!
It would also be about a thousand times more efficient since moving light from A to B requires almost no energy compared to moving electrons through an electronic wire.
Finally, you could use lasers with different colors and wavelengths in the same optical processor, thereby massively parallelizing computations.
What’s the most inspiring technological innovation that you’ve come across recently?
Recently, I came across nanolasers—tiny but revolutionary!
Imagine zipping information between chiplets—parts of a microchip with specific functionality—using nanolasers instead of traditional wires. I chatted about this in my latest interview with NcodiN.
NcodiN builds small nanolasers that can be attached to a chiplet and beam information between them—really fast, allowing high-bandwidth data communications.
If “Future of Computing” had a virtual reality experience, what would users see in this digital version of the platform?
I would do a zoomable 3D visualization of all the technologies mentioned in the Future of Computing blog. You could zoom in and look at every detail so anyone could learn about these technologies quickly.
Especially for non-technical people, VR could help tremendously to make new computing technologies more tangible – from how a data center works down to how a single transistor operates in a microchip.
Why are you collaborating with Gegidze?
Do you recall the last time someone sent you a spam message on LinkedIn, whether you’re looking to hire developers remotely?
Hiring remote workers could be a great opportunity for them to advance economically and for startups to balance their labor costs. But the challenge is: who do you trust?
You won’t be going to foreign countries to hire people, so you need to find someone you trust and want to work with.
That's where Gegidze comes in! Having years of experience and being very well-connected in the industry, Valerian and his team have built a professional and trustworthy brand.
Both Gegidze and Future of Computing are about supporting small startups and grown-up businesses, so this collaboration is a great fit.
Together, we can make great things happen.