Diamonds Are Abundant

Heat used to grow diamonds

What’s more scarce than perfect diamonds, right?


This week, a new company called Diamond Foundry announced that it is able to “grow” hundreds of perfect, “real” diamonds (up to nine carats) in just two weeks in a lab.

Announced “above the line of supercredibility,” with the backing of Leonardo DiCaprio and 10 billionaires, my friend Martin Roscheisen is about to disrupt an industry that has been built on scarcity for centuries.

More details on Diamond Foundry in a second… but in the meantime, this audacious company really begs the question: What is truly scarce?

This blog is intended to have you ponder that question, and hopefully realize that technology is a force that converts the seemingly scarce to abundant.

The Lesson of Aluminum

Thousands of years ago, a goldsmith brought an unusual dinner plate to the court of Emperor Tiberius.

The plate was a stunner: made from a new metal, very light, shiny and almost as bright as silver. The goldsmith claimed he’d extracted it from plain clay, using a secret technique, the formula known only to himself and the gods.

Tiberius, though, was a little concerned (and perhaps jealous). Instead of giving the goldsmith the regard expected, he ordered him to be beheaded.

This shiny new metal was aluminum, and that beheading marked its loss to the world for nearly two millennia. It next appeared during the early 1800s, but was still rare enough to be considered the most valuable metal in the world. In the mid 1800’s, Napoleon himself threw a banquet for the king of Siam where the honored guests were given aluminum utensils, while the others had to make do with gold.

Aluminum’s rarity comes down to chemistry. Technically, behind oxygen and silicon, aluminum is actually the third most abundant element in the Earth’s crust, making up 8.3 percent of the weight of the —> Read More