Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Browser Will Rule The Mobile Web As Well

HTML5 video iconImage via WikipediaApps are makeshift. It's like when the bridge collapses, the army puts in place a temporary suspension bridge until the bridge is rebuilt, or at least that is what I saw done in Nepal. Wireless broadband is not where it needs to be, which is everywhere. HTML5 is not here yet.

Microlending Film At Kickstarter

Go donate: Microlending Film: A Documentary About Enterprising Women

Monday, December 27, 2010

Go Easy On Charlie Now

CNN: Tech startups duke it out in snowball fight
Village Voice: Dorky Tech Snowball Fight Today at Madison Square Park

I was passing by Madison Square Park earlier today. It was around 2:30 PM. And guess what I saw on this first big snow day in NYC this winter.

Charlie O'Donnell was being hit by a barrage of snowballs by what looked like a crowd of would be tech entrepreneurs. Charlie fought gallantly like a snow gladiator, until he was turned into a snow man by the mob. The final shot was taken by Shane Snow, real name. (Adam Ostrow, Mashable)

A $50 Smartphone Running On Free WiFi

Bruce Willis at a Live Free or Die Hard (Die H...Image via WikipediaThis is what I am waiting for: a $50 smartphone running on free wifi. You pay for the hardware, you of course keep it charged up, it comes with a charger, and there is no monthly fee to any carrier after that. In a big city like New York, there is free wifi everywhere. And where there is no wifi, you say hello to people. You actually value face time. Hi, my smartphone is not working, let me just have a moment with you.

Bruce Willis tried that on two young women fans in an elevator when they asked for his autograph, and they ran away. As in, forget the autograph, let me just have a moment with you. Let me just say hello.

So careful how you do it though.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Instagram Magic

Instagram has taken off like anything. There is an artist inside all of us, and Instagram is quickie art work. You give that little tinge to a snap shot, and make it your own. Many many flavors are possible. There is more to come. Instagram has taken a lead of sorts.

Google Bought The Building

Wired one way to think about 111 Eighth Avenue is like the Empire State Building on its side. It’s worth noting that the Empire State Building has just over 2 million square feet of office space — about 1 million less than 111 Eighth Avenue ..... the structure sits almost directly on top of where the Hudson Street/Ninth Avenue fiber highway makes a dog-leg to the right before heading north-east toward the Upper West Side. ..... 111 Eighth Avenue has become known as one of the most important so-called telecom carrier hotels on the Eastern seaboard, if not the entire United States..... The city of New York netted $46 million in transaction taxes on the deal. ..... by far the largest U.S. real estate transaction of the year. ..... Google clearly loves New York, as well
Google Blog

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

There Is No Cloud OS

Google Chrome IconImage via Wikipedia
Paul Buchheit: The Cloud OS: The basic idea is that apps and data all live on the Internet .... Apple is lame for not allowing a native Gmail app on the iPhone -- email is the one place where Android really outshines the iPhone for me ...... One way of understanding this new architecture is to view the entire Internet as a single computer. This computer is a massively distributed system with billions of processors, billions of displays, exabytes of storage, and it's spread across the entire planet. Your phone or laptop is just one part of this global computer, and its primarily purpose is to provide a convenient interface. The actual computation and data storage is distributed in surprisingly complex and dynamic ways, but that complexity is mostly hidden from the end user. ..... the development of this global super-computer is one of the most important technological advances in history. ..... the design target of ChromeOS. They are building laptops that run the Chrome web browser and approximately nothing else. ..... ChromeOS assumes a mouse/track-pad while Android currently assumes a touch interface ... and ultimately everything may end up with a touch screen anyway.
There is the cloud. But the OS resides firmly on your laptop. It is thin. It only runs a browser, and that browser takes you to the cloud, but the OS is not in the cloud. So the term cloud OS is misleading.

JP Rangaswami: Chief Scientist:

Image representing Salesforce as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase
ZDNet: JP Rangaswami and the future of The appointment of JP Rangaswami as’s first chief scientist could push the company in an even more radical direction than we’ve already seen if he’s given any say in product strategy.
This is the first I am learning of JP's move from British Telecom to JP, of course, is the guy who introduced me to Twitter. According to, I am number 52 in NYC on Twitter.

Congrats JP. Keep making bold moves.

Whining Is Not The Word

Chamillionaire and Michael Arrington. (CC) Bri...Image via Wikipedia
ZDNet: 2010: The Year of Whining About Women In Tech: Whining about the inequality of women in tech has been big for page views this year..... Arrington said women in tech have more “equal opportunity” advantages handed to them than men. He delivered cracked-out lines about “the nurturing and risk tolerance needs of women,” and in closing he called us “you people.” ...... Arrington framed his argument with the opening set-up that the tech arena is a meritocracy. ..... And every person in tech knows that nothing could be further from the truth. ..... Kara Swisher .... blasted Twitter, Facebook, Zynga, Groupon and Foursquare for not having any women as directors ..... the top quarter of Fortune 500 companies with gender diversity outperformed those in the bottom quarter with a 53% higher return on equity. And that firm outperformance seems to happen once there are at least three female directors in the boardroom ..... Tech is not a meritocracy, and it does not run on the right thing to do.
What you are saying is so absolutely ridiculous. So you think the best way to make progress on gender is by NOT talking about gender? How come you don’t apply that same logic to rocket science and software and what have you? The best way to make progress on a software project is by NOT talking about the software project. How about that? How do you like them apples?

Even Little Children Could Speak English

Image representing Om Malik as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
Om Malik: Chrome OS: What Is It Good For?: The boot-up is extremely fast, and the log-on process is smooth and speedy ..... what you see is essentially the Chrome web browser. ...... The user experience expects us to come to the idea of using browser tabs instead of apps ..... The biggest challenge for Google’s Chrome OS is going to be fighting against many life-long habits of using a desktop OS. ..... there’s one thing the device does very well: let you use Google apps, especially Google Docs, Gmail and other cloud services (from Google) without a problem...... My more portable, 2.13 GHz MacBook Air is the machine I like, and even as I spend a lot of time inside the browser, I prefer a desktop with the Chrome browser and raw power..... As a consumer, one is going to find Chrome OS very limiting, especially since have some pre-conceived notions about what a personal computer is supposed to do. .... Google will be best suited to focus Chrome OS and all its energies on business buyers — call centers, retail outlets and airlines to start with — and forget about the consumers.
I am reading this review of the Chrome OS by Om Malik and I am reminded of a joke about Jung Bahadur Rana. So this guy was Prime Minister of Nepal several hundred years back, probably the most colorful character in Nepal's political history.

Google: Best Company Its Size

Facebook, FriendFeed, and DisqusImage by Robert Scoble via Flickr
Paul Buchheit: Four reasons Google is still Awesome: Google is probably still the best company of its size, and I really enjoyed my time there. ..... They take big risks ..... Google has enough big successes, such as Chrome and Android ..... Google's weapon of choice is more often open source and open standards. ..... Cultures that don't laugh at themselves are cults.
I am a Google fanboy. So I really liked this post by Paul Buchheit. Google really is the best company its size. And Paul points out Android and Chrome. I have said at this blog before that those two alone are two separate Google size companies. They are big.

Baratunde Is Funny

Baratunde, long time property of Master Thurston.

Monday, December 20, 2010

A Guggenheim Walk

Last night I was at the Guggenheim for about two hours for a free concert. The line was long. But the wait was worth it.

I was wearing blue jeans.

There was this newly retired Chicago couple - college sweethearts - right in front of me. We chatted. I ended up talking about ethnic prejudice in Nepal.

I was one of the top Obama volunteers in the city, friends with the founders of Manhattan For Obama, Brooklyn For Barack and so on. When they finally published the names and profiles of the prominent Nepali Obama supporters in the city in the Nepali newspaper in Queens, I was not on the list. That is ethnic prejudice for you. (Am I Smart?, Larry Ellison)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Kyle Cameron Studstill: Social Butterfly, A Scene All On His Own

I don't quite remember when exactly was the first time I met Kyle. The second time was at a Dropio party, a company Mark Zuckerberg scavenged. That was a long time ago. But I have seen him at so many events since. Kyle "gets" social. I think I have seen him more often than anyone else in the NY tech scene just going to events. I see Kyle, and I get very comfortable. He makes me feel like I belong at events.

130 Million Books

It is not an infinity. There are only so many books in the world. Google has come up with the magic number. It is almost 130 million.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Going To Kickstarter For My Microfinance StartUp

Vinod KhoslaImage via WikipediaSome of my friends have been urging me to go to Kickstarter to raise the first 100K that I need to raise for my microfinance startup, a for profit, high tech proposition. And I am getting excited by the day about the idea. Actually I think I am going to go ahead and do it.

With this 100K I should be able to do enough work to be able to raise a few million dollars from the microfinance fund that Vinod Khosla is working to set up.

I know Kickstarter best for Diaspora. I believe Diaspora also raised 100K - it might have been 200K - when Facebook was mired in a major privacy controversy.

My microfinance startup is way more promising than Diaspora. I am not even in the same league.

Microfinance: Cutting Edge Like Clean Tech, Bio Tech, Nano Tech

Vinod KhoslaImage via WikipediaMicrofinance: A Zero Trillion Dollar Industry
Microfinance, Nanotech, Biotech, Software/Hardware/Connectivity
Vinod Khosla's Green Tech Sweep

I put microfinance in the same league as the sectors touted as the next big things: clean tech, bio tech, nano tech. People in the industry keep referring to the challenges in the last mile. When it is time to dole out the money, it gets complicated.

Web tech is relevant to all these emerging sectors. You are going to need specific kinds of software for specific tasks in nano tech, for example, although many generic web tech stuff will do just fine. The big minds in nano tech will still be on Facebook and Twitter, will they not?

Learning The Wrong Lessons From Wikileaks

Vint Cerf, North American computer scientist w...Image via WikipediaVint Cerf: Chief Internet Evangelist: Google: Governments shouldn’t have a monopoly on Internet governance: Gooble Public Policy Blog
The beauty of the Internet is that it’s not controlled by any one group. Its governance is bottoms-up .... the UN Committee on Science and Technology announced that only governments would be able to sit on a working group set up to examine improvements to the IGF—one of the Internet’s most important discussion forums .... we don’t believe governments should be allowed to grant themselves a monopoly on Internet governance. The current bottoms-up, open approach works—protecting users from vested interests and enabling rapid innovation. Let’s fight to keep it that way.
This issue is kind of like net neutrality, it is kind of like free speech. Like some Iranian authorities like to say, we are for people speaking freely, but the free speech should be in moderation. Either there is free speech, or there is no free speech. You take away net neutrality and the web has become cable television.

Yahoo Doldrums

Image representing Carol Bartz as depicted in ...Image via CrunchBaseMike Arrington has relentlessly gone after Carol Bartz from day one. Some of that I have attributed to sexism. Some I have attributed to the media's need for conflict and drama: that is partly how they generate page hits. Some I have attributed to Mike angling to get bought by Yahoo's rival AOL: that happened. But Yahoo does have serious problems.

Yahoo's problem is not that it is not number one, or that it is not going to get back the crown. Yahoo's problem has been that it has messed up being number two. Yahoo bought Flickr, and look at Facebook: photo sharing is the number one thing that happens on Facebook.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Holiday Parties Most Days

December is the cruelest month
But this time for once my cheeks are warm
- The Waterboys

There are so many Holiday Parties going on in startup land. I have been to so many already, with so many more lined up.

Digital Dumbo Holiday Party

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Education Is Media, Action Is Thought

Watch live streaming video from paleycenter at

(Source: AVC)

In this video that I first came across here, and then the money quote - like Fred Wilson might put it - that I came across here first, Fred Wilson says Education is media.

Monday, December 13, 2010

150 Mbps Wireless Broadband

Telstra mobile phone Base station - Wireless H...Image via Wikipedia150 megabits per second download speed: that's pretty amazing.
iTWire: 149.4Mbps over wireless broadband: Telstra and Huawei are testing LTE mobile broadband using 1800MHz spectrum ..... this was more than three times the peak speeds achieved with current mobile technology. .... "As mobile customers move away from 2G services and onto 3G and LTE, 1800MHz spectrum will increasingly become available to be re-farmed by operators. The overwhelming success of these trials shows that 1800MHz can be an attractive option for deploying LTE where access to other spectrum bands is constrained" ..... Earlier this year, Huawei set a record LTE-Advanced download speed of 1.2Gbps at the CTIA Wireless 2010 event held in Las Vegas.
1 gigabits per second is even more impressive.

Bad Passwords

Source: Wall Street Journal

Twitter Trends 2010

NYC signing September 1,2009 Nintendo Store - NYCImage via WikipediaTop 10 Twitter Trends of 2010
1. Gulf Oil Spill
2. FIFA World Cup
3. Inception
4. Haiti Earthquake
5. Vuvuzela
6. Apple iPad
7. Google Android
8. Justin Bieber
9. Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows
10. Pulpo Paul

Microsoft Doldrums

Image representing Microsoft as depicted in Cr...Image via CrunchBaseThe chances of Microsoft coming from behind in the mobile phone space are slim. The chances of Microsoft coming from behind in the tablet space are slim. The chances of Windows and Office getting the sexy back are also slim. So what is a company the size of Microsoft supposed to do?

NYTM After Party: Is It A Holiday Parteeeey!

Charlie O'Donnell At His Inspiring Best

GroupOnizing GroundReport Might Be Specific To GroundReport

I thought I wrote up this blog post, and sent that out as a tweet to Rachel Sterne and Randi Zuckerberg and it went out into the ether and that was that.

Why Zuck? I follow her on Twitter, and when I typed "ra" she also showed up. So.

And today I see it has been talked about at GroundReport itself by its founder. That allows me to elaborate.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

GroundReport Needs To Get GroupOnized To Take Off

GroundReport is a greaaat idea, inspiring/touching actually to a Third World guy like me.

Its roots lie is Rachel Sterne's dissatisfaction with the UN Security Council, the ultimate bubble/ivory tower in global politics. I have also long been dissatisfied with the UN Security Council.

It is not true what GroundReport is trying to do is a saturated market. The opposite is true. But it is important to get the business model right.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Image representing Mark Suster as depicted in ...Image by GRP Partners via CrunchBaseA week ago, while admiring his great three pieces at TechCrunch on social, I disagreed with Mark Suster's conclusion. He said the next decade belonged to Facebook. I said not, it belonged to fragmentation. Companies that might not even be one tenth the size of Facebook together might go on to dominate. 10 years, now that's a long time.

Mark Suster: The Social Network: Facebook To Fragmentation

But now, at this own blog, Mark Suster has come up with a piece that is an amazing statement on the immediate future.

Wearing Black

I wear black. I should not have to explain.

Black is a beautiful color. I wear black. A certain shade of black, with a little shine on it.

Used to be sky blue, now it is black. I like black. It is an amazing color. It has depth.

I showed up in Kentucky with a tailor made suit from back home: brown.

But right now it is black. I like the color.

It also is about simplicity.

I have a few different black Brazil shirts that I wear at home on a few different days. Pele was God when I was growing up. He still is. Brazil is Mecca.

I wear black to express solidarity with my president Barack Obama. I wear black for him too. You have no idea. You have no idea what he means to me. All he ever needed to do was win in 2008, and win he did. He could have let the Great Depression happen, he might not have passed health care reform or Wall Street reform, and I would still have liked him just fine. The fact that he is destined for greatness makes it easier to like him, but that is not why I like him. (The Tea Party Is Getting America Talibanized)

I wear black. It feels good. It feels right. It feels warm.

Blip.TV: How Do They Ever Get Anything Done?

Image representing Blip Networks as depicted i...Image via CrunchBaseSo yesterday I dropped by the Blip.TV offices. It's on Broome Street.

The place was packed. There were people everywhere, packed like sardines in a can. When you wanted to wave at someone, you had to be careful you did not hit someone else. You would not have wanted to start a fight.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Eric Schmidt's Cloud Computing And My IC Vision

The Official Google Blog: Cloud computing: the latest chapter in an epic journey: It’s extraordinary how very complex platforms can produce beautifully simple solutions like Chrome and Chrome OS ...... but then there are very few genuinely new ideas in computer science. The last really new one was public key encryption back in 1975. ..... But the web is not really cloud computing—it’s an enormously important source of information, probably the most important ever invented. One major web innovation cycle happened in 1995—remember the Netscape IPO, Java and all of that—ultimately leading, in 1997, to an announcement by Oracle
El número 14Image by wicho via Flickr (and bunch of other people including myself) called “the network computer.” It was exactly what the Chrome team at Google was talking about on Tuesday. ....... Moore's law is a factor of 1,000 in 15 years—so 15 years ago versus today, we have 1,000 times faster networks, CPUs and screens. ...... Asynchronous JavaScript XML, or AJAX, came along in in 2003/04, and it enabled the first really interesting web apps like Gmail to be built. ...... LAMP, which stands for Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP—and Perl, Python and various other Ps—evolved as a platform for the back-end........ Instead of building these large monolithic programs, people would take snippets of code and aggregate them together in languages like Java and JavaScript. ..... As usual, Larry and Sergey were way ahead of me on this. From my very first day at Google, they made clear that we should be in the browser business and the OS business. ...... we've gone from a world where we had reliable disks and unreliable networks, to a world where we have reliable networks and basically no disks. Architecturally that’s a huge change—and with HTML5 it is now finally possible to build the kind of powerful apps that you take for granted on a PC or a Macintosh on top of a browser platform. ....... a small team, effectively working as a start-up within Google
I am working on a blog post called Google stole my idea. I am only half kidding, of course. I first thought of the IC concept in 2000. That was before I ever ready about Larry Ellison's network computer vision, something he had talked about apparently a few years before that.

The IC vision is what I hung on to as my straw when the dot com collapse happened.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

A Mind Blowing Party

Last night I showed up at the party I thought Rachel Sklar had thrown for Fred Wilson's birthday. Ends up it was Rachel Sklar's birthday. Wait, I am confused. Fred Wilson raises money to get more young women into math and science instead of celebrating his birthday. I told you, he is a feminist! And this party was tied into that. So I can't be too off. Maybe the two share birthdays.

Going Backwards: FoodSpotting, FourSquare, Twitter, Facebook

Fractals: Apple, Windows 95, Netscape, Google, Facebook, Twitter
Twitter, FourSquare: Mobile Web Thingies
FoodSpotting Is The Next FourSquare
Fractals And FoodSpotting
Fractals: Mandelbrot

What do I mean by going backwards?

Microsoft started out as a software only company. Actually that was the genius of Bill Gates, otherwise his cofounder Paul Allen wanted to do both software and hardware. Microsoft could not have moved as fast if it had also done hardware. Smart. But. Down the line Microsoft has gone into hardware. The company fell comfortable enough that it felt compelled to get into hardware as well.

You Don't Need Billions To Take Care Of Your Family

Image representing Mark Zuckerberg as depicted...Image via CrunchBaseThis news is heart warming to me. Now I wish a 200 billion dollar valuation upon Facebook. Zuck just warmed up my heart. If you think how minuscule the UN's budget is, this effort by the two mega billionaires Gates and Buffett stands out. And, believe me, money is the smaller part of the message, big as it is. The bigger part of the message is the gesture itself. This sends a loud message to the people in dire need, the people who are working to help them, and people who need to help them but are not. Poverty is truly an artificial thing. It can be made to go away. It doesn't take much. And it all starts with caring. Once you decide you care, things start to happen.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Chrome OS Taking Too Long To Show Up

Engadget: Google Chrome OS gets detailed, first laptops from Acer and Samsung coming mid-2011: it's ready to go almost right away .... Google says the limiting factor is actually how fast the user can move their hand ..... OS also supports multiple accounts with a guest account that runs in Incognito mode, and all user data is encrypted by default ..... the OS will be automatically updated every few weeks -- the goal is for it to get faster over time, not slower. ...... apps on the Chrome Web Store have to be built for HTML5 offline to work ..... Google Cloud Print, which allows you to print on your home printer from anywhere ..... new Verizon 3G plans for offline access -- you'll get 100MB of free data per month for two years ...... Intel-based machines from Acer and Samsung in mid-2011 -- and "thousands of Googlers" are using Chrome OS devices as their primary machines. ..... a modern riff on the "thin client" idea from the 90s -- an idea that Eric Schmidt himself pioneered while at Sun ..... "our instincts were right 20 years ago, but we didn't have the tools or technology."
Like a CIA guy says in The Bourne Ultimatum.

"How long?"

"An hour, Sir."

"That's too long!"

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Microfinance: A Zero Trillion Dollar Industry

Eminem: Recovery

Assange: An Information Bin Laden? I Think Not

Julian Assange, WikiLeaks, at New Media Days 09Image by New Media Days via FlickrFor the past week word was he was hiding in a cave in Great Britain. Now looks like he has been caught. If he had a lawyer he was in touch with on British soil, I mean. It was only a matter of time.

The only time I got alarmed was when he yesterday threatened to let go the thermonuclear weapon. He was going to give people the encryption key so they could see everything he had managed to get. I was not worried about more private talk important people might have had. There were information sources in countries with shady regimes. If they knew who you were, you likely disappeared, and not voluntarily like Assange did.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Nexus S: The Best Phone Out There

TechCrunch: TechCrunch Review: Google Nexus S a “clean” install of Android..... will become the reference phone for this generation of Android. ..... significantly faster than the Nexus One (and most current generation phones), has a high-end AMOLED 400 x 800 resolution screen that is second only to the iPhone 4 ...... dead simple to set up ..... it’s Google’s various apps, some of which are unavailable for the iPhone, that make it the best phone on the market today. .... very thin and light – just 4.55 ounces ..... significantly svelter than the EVO or the Droid X ..... 6+ hours of heavy voice/data usage ..... gyroscope, accelerometer, compass, proximity sensor, haptic feedback and a light sensor ..... 16 GB of internal flash memory .... Google’s noise cancellation software is also present. When combined with the excellent audio hardware it results in very high quality calls. In test calls from my car the recipient said they heard very little background noise – the iPhone in particular performed terribly in a similar test. ..... So far, not one dropped call..... Nexus S comes with the Google Voice app pre-installed ..... the UI hasn’t seen a ground-up redesign (that’s coming in Honeycomb) .... If the iPhone is 8/10 on text input, the Nexus One is probably 5/10 and the Nexus S is a solid 6/10. .... the real test with us is whether we continue to use it after a post. The EVO and the Droid X were quickly forgotten for us. Michael tested the iPhone 4 but its lack of point to point navigation and unwillingness to play well with Google Voice made him ultimately give it up after a month and move back to the Nexus One ....... The Nexus S will almost certainly be his go-to phone for the next few months. Michael is leaving today for a week in Europe, and taking only this phone with him. The fact that it’s unlocked means he can add a sim card once he is in Paris and continue to use it without extravagant additional charges. ..... Google’s voice search/input applications and Google Navigation continue to make Android phones in general significantly better mobile devices than the iPhone. ..... It is better than the iPhone in most ways.

Nexus S Is Da Bomb

Google: Nexus

Nexus S

If Google could only go into the wireless broadband supported by ads market itself, this phone could be practically free. The idea that you have to pay for phone calls is ridiculous. The technology is already there.

Nexus: Google, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube.

Tumblr Down, Tumblr Up

Image representing Tumblr as depicted in Crunc...Image via CrunchBase
Business Insider: TUMBLR IS BACK!: an extended outage that started yesterday.... Tumblr's twitter account says: "The recovering database cluster is online and healthy. We're incrementally opening up access to blogs while monitoring performance."
This downtime was significant because (1) it went on and on and on, it lasted a while and (2) enemies of Tumblr had publicly warned a few weeks back that they would take it down. Right now I don't know if the downtime was due to overuse, or some act of those enemies. I am about to go dig up on the story.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Zuckerberg On CBS

I like Zuckerberg. I do. I really do. I like him a lot actually. People like him show up a few a decade at most. He is special that way. Just like Steve Jobs is special. I think Zuck is going to keep innovating at the pace he has been innovating. He is in the driving seat like the Google founders have not been.

Mark Suster: The Social Network: Facebook To Fragmentation

Rupert MurdochImage via WikipediaMark Suster's three pieces on TechCrunch are a nice summary of what has happened, and what is happening, although if any of this is news to you, I have to ask, where have you been?

When he starts talking about the future, it gets trickier. Social has so much buzz right now that it is hard to imagine the post-social buzz. But that there will be is for sure. There always has been. Social itself will morph. Social is one thing. Social and mobile as a combo is a case of two plus two being five. To that cocktail add local and global and you end up with two plus two equals 22. And it is not easy to figure out.

One good news is I see many, many players emerging.

Google's Failure To Purchase GroupOn Shows Google Is No Monopoly

Groupon logo.Image via WikipediaFacebook is the most serious competition Google ever faced, and Facebook is not your classic search engine, it is not a ten blue links company. Although it is blue!

Look at how Facebook has gone after Google by not going after Google like one bull after another. The web as a whole is too fluid a place, too open to innovation for any company to manage to pull a monopoly on there.

$160 Smartphone From India: No Contract, No Subsidy
Facebook, Twitter

Fred Wilson On Android And HTML5

Fred WilsonImage by Lachlan Hardy via FlickrIf how often I visit a particular blog is the way to measure, Fred Wilson very much continues to be my favorite solo blogger. He does have a home base advantage in that both of us are New Yorkers, but his standing in the blogosphere is obvious. Yesterday his blog post was the top featured story at TechMeme when I visited it, which was in the evening.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Wait, Did They Say Froth?

The New York Times building in New York, NY ac...Image via WikipediaI wrote and published this last post - Bubble Talk Goes On: It's An Overshoot - before I read the Fred Wilson post or the New York Times story. I wrote my blog post after skimming the two headlines. I winged it, as you might put it.

Bubble Talk Goes On: It's An Overshoot

Bono at the Vanity Fair kickoff party for the ...Image via WikipediaFred Wilson: Invest In The Mess
New York Times: A Silicon Bubble Shows Signs Of Reinflating
The Day I Got Called Sean Parker
Did Not Meet Fred Wilson, But Met Mazy Dar
Angel Bubbles: No Bubbles
Bubble, Boom Or Froth?

Fred has said repeatedly that what we are seeing is a bubble. First thing I say is this is not a yes no question. Is this a bubble? If you force ask me, my answer is no. This is not a bubble. This is hyperactivity. Will many angel investors lose money? Sure. But that does not make it a bubble. Even a top notch VC like Fred Wilson expects one third of his portfolio to go down under. And these are companies that he did not invest in on day one knowing they will go down. You think you picked a winner, you give them sufficient money and guidance, you go to bat for them, and they still go down. If Fred Wilson is at peace with a 33% failure rate, there are VCs whose failure rates are 66% and 90%. Most VCs fail. Most entrepreneurs fail. By some estimates as many as 90% of new businesses fail within a year of getting launched. Looks like 10% is all capitalism needs to survive.

Larry Eyeing HP Now

Image representing Hewlett-Packard as depicted...Image via CrunchBase
Larry Ellison unveils the XImage by plαdys via Flickr
Wall Street Journal: Ellison Says Oracle Will 'Go After' H-P: Mr. Ellison said the new hardware—a "supercluster" of Sparc-based servers—set a record for online transaction processing, a measure of performance for running database software, "for any database running on any computer at any time." ..... "We think the H-P machines are vulnerable. We think they're slow," Mr. Ellison said. "We're going to go after them in the marketplace with better software, better hardware and better people, and we're going to win market share." ..... "I like IBM, and I don't want to tease them very much." ....... Oracle and H-P were once close partners. In 2008, Oracle announced an exclusive partnership with H-P to offer a system bundled with Oracle database software—dubbed Exadata—only to drop that arrangement and substitute Sun hardware as a result of the acquisition.
Larry Ellison thinks in terms of enemies. And in Apothepo he has found one. Getting rid of Apothepo is not going to get Larry to take his eyes off of HP, but that might help a little, just a little. But HP is going to exhibit self destructive behavior by sticking to Apothepo for as long as possible.

Angry Birds, Angry, Angry Birds

I first noticed this game - a few times - in subway cars being played by people sitting next to me. They were gripped. I was gripped just watching. It'a good game if you have time to kill. It is simple, it is fun, it is eye catching. The name is a nice one. Angry birds. This dog will hunt.

GroupOn Did The Right Thing

Image representing Zappos as depicted in Crunc...Image via CrunchBase
Groupon logo.Image via WikipediaSources: Groupon rejects Google's offer; will stay independent
Groupon Annual Revenues Actually $2 Billion

Secretly I was hoping this would not come to be. Google and GroupOn were not a good match. A great high tech company is not automatically a great high touch company. GroupOn does a lot of stuff offline. In that way GroupOn is not like YouTube at all. YouTube is all tech, all online.

This was not going to be a good buy for Google. And this would have severely limited GroupOn. GroupOn is just now getting started. This company could do really well independently.
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Amazon buying Zappos was similarly a bad idea. Zappos was IPO material. The white venture capitalists who forced Tony into Jeff Bezos' arms acted racist.