62. Ron J. Williams

CEO of Cofounder of Knodes, How To Simplify Social Networking

62. Ron J. Williams

With one basic algorithm (below) Ron J. Williams hooks people up. First, he launched SnapGoods, a site which helps people share hardware and other equipment; now he has Knodes, a tool for finding the people in your network who care most about any piece of info. “There are two fundamental axes that govern why people open anything online: relevancy to what you do and engagement in your life,” Williams says. “With thousands of contacts on social sites, we need personal outreach if we want to get anything done.”


A: Availability (geographical closeness)
X: Expertise (relevant background)
I: Influence (know others who matter)
N: Engagement (how in touch you’ve been)


  • 1998

    Graduates from Harvard University with a degree in Economics and East Asian studies

  • 2008

    A venture capitalist introduces Williams to Knodes cofounder John Goodwin because they’re both “smart trouble makers”

  • 2009

    Convinces a stranger on Craigslist to rent him a motorcycle so he can impress his girlfriend; builds SnapGoods.

  • 2011

    Gets engaged; debuts Knodes two days later in front of 1,000 New York technologists