The Eye in the Matches

On the cover of the Business Section of the New York Times for November 6, 2000, in the Business Digest column on the left, this symbol appeared:

Eye in a triangle of matches

It was nominally associated with a blurb about some business article. But the image and the article had no apparent connection. Except that the article appeared on page C5.

Accompanying the article itself was this larger three-part image:

The triple image

The article was about a particular sort of high-concept company (biotech, that sort of thing) that had enjoyed an initial popularity with venture capitalists, but that was now in disfavor.

One might interpret the image as an initial idea (if there was some reason to interpret three matches as an idea), an idea with an investor (if there was some reason to interpret an eye as an investor), and then the idea "burned out" and investorless.

At least one might if one didn't Know Better...