Friday, September 30, 2011

Sean Parker: Mystery Man

Image representing Sean Parker as depicted in ...Image via CrunchBaseForbes: Agent Of Disruption
Sean Parker rocked the music industry with Napster and unleashed viral marketing with Plaxo. His vision shaped Facebook; so did his paranoia. Now 31 and worth $2.1 billion, he's just getting started. ...... one pale hand on the wheel, the other toggling through thousands of songs uploaded on the car's sound system. ..... Over the last ten hours he's interviewed two potential VPs for his new video startup, answered hours' worth of e-mails about the music platform he's backing, Spotify, and met with a potential CEO for his Facebook charity app, Causes. He's also booking bands and wrangling vendors for his engagement party, scheduled in New Jersey the same night Hurricane Irene looks to hammer the Northeast ...... breaks from work to dine with Jack Dorsey ...... By the time he drops me off at my hotel, it's 11:30 p.m. Parker's day is about half done. ...... For the next six hours Parker fires off e-mails, then turns to his private Facebook page. The previous afternoon--or earlier the same day, if you're on Parker's body clock ...... Around 6 a.m. Parker posts this Schopenhauer quote: "We can come to look upon the deaths of our enemies with as much regret as we feel for those of our friends, namely, when we miss their existence as witnesses to our success." It immediately leaks. Gossip site Gawker accuses him of dancing on Jobs' grave. He e-mails Gawker that the quote was a tribute to Jobs--his longtime idol and more recent rival (iTunes versus Spotify). Just before 7 a.m. he goes to bed. ........ Four hours later he's up ..... Flighty, manic and unpredictable, Parker grates on investors--he's been jettisoned from the three companies he helped create, soon after they lifted off. "He's seen as an unknown quantity, and VCs love for things to be very much in control" ....... But VCs also love big ideas, and Parker has those in spades--LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman calls him a "big-ass visionary." And in terms of boardroom scheming, he's nothing like his fictional portrayal in The Social Network. "The movie needed an antagonist, but that's not what he was," says former Facebook growth chief
Sean ParkerImage by via Flickr Chamath Palihapitiya. "He's really the exact opposite of his portrayal in the film." ...... a human accelerant, an idea catalyst who, when combined with right people, has fueled some of the most disruptive companies of the last two decades ...... At just 19 he blew up the record industry as the cofounder of the music-sharing site Napster ...... 24-year-old president of Facebook ...... He's also hunting new startups as general partner at venture firm Founders Fund and reuniting with Napster's Shawn Fanning to create Airtime, a live video site. ....... His personal network is astounding, a combination of foresight and fate. Starting as a teenager, when he interned for current Zynga Chief Mark Pincus, Parker has teamed, in one way or another, with the men who now control the modern Internet: Mark Zuckerberg, Mike Moritz, Peter Thiel, Reid Hoffman, Yuri Milner, Dustin Moskovitz, Adam D'Angelo, Daniel Ek, Ron Conway, Ram Shriram and Jim Breyer. ....... "Parker has access to trends and signals that are invisible to many people. For him it's like hearing a dog whistle." Parker doesn't disagree: "I find a lot of things relevant that aren't necessarily relevant to the world when I'm thinking about them." ....... Parker is drawn to big, universal problems and spends years looking for them. ...... his recently purchased $20 million Manhattan town house ...... "The transition strategies are more important than understanding what the outcome state will be." ...... Parker put himself in position for the string of blockbusters that his critics blithely attribute to sequential luck. ..... "He thinks about where he perceives the world to be going," explains Spotify founder Daniel Ek. "If he doesn't think there is a company that will win, then he builds it himself." ....... Ask Parker about the genesis of his former company Plaxo and he starts with theories of how real viruses spread across populations. Before he shares the name of his favorite sushi restaurant--prior to one dinner we had in New York he called five to find out which chef was cutting the fish that night--he discusses rice density and the ideal geometric shape for sushi cuts (trapezoids). Question the audiophile about the best brand of headphones and you first learn how sound waves are registered by our tympanic membranes. As the expression goes, ask him for the time and he'll tell you how to build a watch. ........ "We talked for what I originally scheduled for an hour, ended up being three hours," Reid Hoffman recalls about their first meeting back in 2002. Twitter founder Dorsey had the same experience: "It's rare to find someone who can have those kinds of conversations. ... I appreciate any conversation where I can walk away questioning myself
MUNICH, GERMANY - JANUARY 23:   Sean Parker, m...Image by Getty Images via @daylife and my ideas." ........ Parker's life becomes impervious to time, a subject friends and business partners acknowledge with a defeated laugh. Peter Thiel calls it Parker's "absence of dramatic punctuality." Ek manages Parker by telling him there's a meeting at 11 a.m. and informing others it starts at 1 p.m. There's even a name in Silicon Valley for this phenomenon: Sean Standard Time. ...... When focused on a task, he blocks everything else out and works himself into a trance. The outside world fades; time slips away. "It requires a lot of rescheduling, but I try to focus on things that are the highest value and get those done perfectly." ....... Parker's definition of "done perfectly" is extreme. ....... He's trying to lose weight and is eating only vegetables. ...... After hundreds of photos in four locations around the house, the shoot is finished. It's now 2 a.m.--perfect, calibrated Sean Standard Time. ........ Two nights later I arrive at his house at 11 p.m. A chartered G450 is scheduled to fly to San Francisco from Teterboro, N.J.--wheels up at midnight, sharp. Parker is out meeting Spotify's Ek. When midnight hits and there is still no Parker, I get a little nervous. Everyone else yawns. Parker struts in at 2 a.m. He still has to pack and shower. At 3:30 a.m. a Cadillac Escalade is loaded with luggage and take-out fried chicken from Blue Ribbon, a late-night New York chefs hangout, and across the Hudson we go. ........ We take off at 4 a.m., a half hour before FAA fatigue laws would have grounded the pilots. When I awake to a view of the California desert outside the plane window, Parker is sitting across from me, snacking on a piece of fried chicken, his veggie-only diet already over. "Did you sleep well?" ....... his father, Bruce, formerly the chief scientist at the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Association, taught him how to program on an Atari 800. He was in second grade. ...... At 15 his hacking caught the attention of the FBI, earning him community service. At 16 he won the Virginia state computer science fair for developing an early Web crawler and was recruited by the CIA. Instead he interned for Mark Pincus' D.C. startup, FreeLoader, and then UUNet, an early Internet service provider. ......... Parker made $80,000 his senior year, enough to convince his parents to let him put off college and join Shawn Fanning, a teenager he'd met on a dial-up bulletin board, to start a music-sharing site that became Napster in 1999. ....... "I kind of refer to it as Napster University--it was a crash course in intellectual property law, corporate finance, entrepreneurship and law school," says Parker. "Some of the e-mails I wrote when I was just a kid who didn't know what he was doing are apparently in [law school] textbooks." ........ by that time Parker had already been exiled by management and was living in a North Carolina beach house. "I didn't understand at the time that when someone asks you to take an extended vacation that's basically a prelude to firing you." ........ While at Napster Parker met angel investor Ron Conway, who was funding another company in the startup's building in Santa Clara. Conway has backed every Parker production since. ....... Napster was less a company than an all-hours circus, a strange tangle of people who thought they joined a renegade social movement rather than a startup. ....... "So much of what I learned at Napster was learning what not to do," says Parker, as Conway scribbles on a notepad. He learned to listen to Parker the hard way. "When Sean became president of Facebook, he called me and said, ‘You have to look at this company.' The killer is that I could have been Peter Thiel," says Conway, referring to Thiel's investment in Facebook that made him a billionaire. "But I said, ‘You have to clean up the issues at Plaxo, so don't introduce me to this Facebook thing.' " He sips his wine, shakes his head and laughs: "These are painful memories." ......... Plaxo was Parker's first attempt at creating a real company--an online service that aimed to keep your address book up to date. It sounds boring compared to Napster and Facebook, but Plaxo was an early social networking tool and a pioneer of the types of viral tricks that helped grow LinkedIn, Zynga and Facebook. "Plaxo is like the indie band that the public doesn't know but was really influential with other musicians," Parker says. ........ "In some ways Plaxo is the company I'm most proud of because it was the company that wreaked the most havoc on the world," says Parker. ........ There are diverging stories about Parker's swift exile from Plaxo. His take is that Ram Shriram, a former Google board member recruited to help manage the company, conspired to throw him out and strip him of his stock. "Ram Shriram played this very vindictive game not only to force me out of the company but force me out broke, penniless, impoverished and with no options." ........ cofounders Todd Masonis and Cameron Ring share a different story: that Parker was essential in creating the company strategy and raising money but grew bored with the daily grind of running it. Masonis claims that Parker was often absent, and when he was around, he was distracting: "It was the sort of thing where he doesn't come to work, but then maybe if he does it's at 11 p.m., but it's not to do a bunch of work, it's because he's bringing a bunch of girls back to the office because he can show them he's a startup founder." .......... Whatever the motivation, Parker's removal was messy. He insists investors hired a private eye to build a case. ........ Parker was on his own, isolated from his cofounders and close friends. "I felt a complete loss of faith in humanity, impending doom, a sense that I couldn't trust anybody," says Parker. ....... shown Facebook by a friend's girlfriend (versus the one-night stand depicted in Aaron Sorkin's screenplay) he was already a social networking veteran, both because of Plaxo and, more directly, as an advisor to Friendster, the ill-fated Facebook forerunner he stumbled across when reporters asked him if it was connected to the similar-sounding Napster. ........ He wrote to Facebook's generic e-mail address and later met Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin over a Chinese dinner in Manhattan in the spring of 2004. ........ A few weeks later, by chance, he ran into Zuckerberg and crew on the streets of Palo Alto and shortly moved into Dustin Moskovitz's room at the rented Facebook house. "It's the only thing the movie got kind of close to right," deadpans Adam D'Angelo ......... Just 24, Parker was Facebook's business veteran. He helped the collegeaged Facebook founders network around Silicon Valley, set up routers and meet benevolent investors like Thiel, Hoffman and Pincus. ........ "Sean was pivotal in helping Facebook transform from a college project into a real company," Mark Zuckerberg says in an e-mail. "Perhaps more importantly, Sean helped ensure that anyone interested in investing in Facebook would not only buy into a company, but also a mission and vision of making the world more open through sharing." ........ D'Angelo credits Parker for recognizing that design was as vital as engineering. ....... Together with Aaron Sittig, an early Napster friend who would become Facebook's key architect, Parker helped drive Facebook's minimalist look. He was adamant that the site have a continuous flow and tasks like adding friends be as frictionless as possible. "We wanted it to be like a telephone service," says Sittig. "Something that really fades into the background." Later Parker helped push Facebook's photo-sharing function. It would be one of his last acts as Facebook's president. ........ In August 2005 Parker was questioned in North Carolina after cops found cocaine in a beach house rented under his name. He was never arrested or charged, but the incident swiftly kick-started his downfall at Facebook. ....... Accel Partners resented him because he forced the VC to invest in Facebook at a then high $100 million valuation ..... He had been pushed out of his third company in five years. He moved to New York in the fall of 2005, crashing with Grateful Dead lyricist John Perry Barlow, a friend from the Napster days. ....... was a strong outside influence in the development of Facebook's "Share" platform, which allowed users to upload news articles, video and other third-party content. ....... his greatest contribution to Facebook was his creation of a corporate structure--based on his Plaxo experience--that gave Zuckerberg complete and permanent control of the company he founded. ........ Parker's plan fortified Zuckerberg with supervoting shares that resisted dilution during fundraising and armed him with enough board seats to stay in power for as long as he wanted. ...... At Plaxo Parker had endured in real life what the fictional Saverin suffered in the film. "I don't mind being depicted as a decadent partyer because I don't think there's anything morally wrong with that," says Parker, quickly adding that the partying was exaggerated, too. "But I do mind being depicted as an unethical, mercenary operator, because I do think there is something wrong with that." ......... "I was a mess at that point because the movie had hit, the depiction of me was so far from reality I was having a hard time psychologically dealing with it," Parker says. "I was all bummed out, I had just broken up with my girlfriend of four years and I just had knee surgery, so I couldn't walk." ..... a mutual friend introduced him to his future fiancĂ©e, the 22-year-old Lenas, a singer-songwriter. ........ remains a hacker at heart, motivated less by money than the drive to disrupt. ..... he never stopped thinking about Napster. Eight years after it had been sued out of existence he was still searching for a company that could fulfill Napster's promise of sharing music ...... Two years ago a friend told him about a Swedish music site called Spotify that offered unlimited, legal songs. He scoured his network for an introduction, and without seeing the product in action, blindly e-mailed founder Daniel Ek, outlining his ideal music platform, hoping Spotify fit the description. ......... Ek had been a huge fan of Napster, and Parker's suggestions caught his attention: "This was someone who had spent more time thinking about this than I had done myself." After a series of e-mails and a test drive of the platform, Parker was sold and tried to invest. Armed with a cash infusion from Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, Ek wasn't looking for any more. Parker would have to prove his way into the company. He introduced Spotify to Mark Zuckerberg (a Facebook integration plan was scheduled to be introduced shortly after this article went to press) and helped open doors at Warner and Universal, winning over Spotify's board: He eventually invested about $30 million. ......... communication and sharing in real time--something he thinks is underserved on the Web ...... "My pitch is eliminating loneliness," Parker says. There's also a random video chat function similar to last year's voyeuristic flameout, the now defunct Chatroulette. ......... He flies in a monthly loop from New York (base) to Los Angeles (music executives) to San Francisco (Founders Fund), then Stockholm and London (Spotify). In my last meeting with him I asked where he files his taxes. "That's a damn good question. I don't even know." ....... "I actually couldn't honestly tell you whether we've been here for two hours or 20 minutes." ....... Spotify and Airtime, that may yet again redefine life on the social Web.
Slate: Lunch With Sean Parker

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Google Is Not Fighting Back Hard Enough On Android

Image representing Android as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBaseThe Next Web: Samsung: We can’t rely on Google, so we addressed Android IP issues on our own
The Economist: Asia’s new model company
The Economist: Samsung: The next big bet

This was not supposed to be. Now Samsung has also agreed to pay Microsoft extortion money. A PC equivalent of this bad behavior would be if Microsoft had managed to get money from Red Hat and other Linux companies. An Android equivalent would be if Microsoft had managed to get money from Baidu, a Chinese company that also has a mobile operating system out there. Baidu is not paying a dime.

Motorola Mobility is Google's shot at throwing Microsoft to the ground on this. If Motorola Mobility refuses to pay Microsoft money and wins, the other giants - HTC, Samsung - will also be able to follow suit. But Google is moving too slow with digesting Motorola Mobility. Software is Google's DNA. But the hardware part of the smartphone is important enough.

Done right this could be the Android decade. But for that to happen Android has to go back to being free. This is Google's number one challenge right now and for the foreseeable future.
Android robot logo.Image via Wikipedia
World War III Time: Let's Go To War
Android Has To Be Kept Free

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Nexus Prime: A Birthday Gift To Me?

Amitabh BachchanCover of Amitabh BachchanTechCrunch: Google And Samsung Announce October 11 Event: Nexus Prime Imminent
The Prime, which has been rumored for months but is still unconfirmed, is expected to be the first device running Ice Cream Sandwich — the next major Android update, which will unify for ‘mobile’ Gingerbread OS with ‘TabletHoneycomb. .... It's also expected to be a beast specs-wise, with a dual-core processor, 4.5″ or 4.65″ screen, and 4G. Oh, and my favorite rumor: it’s supposed to be running on Verizon’s top-notch 4G network.... Google’s Nexus line of phones, which have included the Nexus One and Nexus S before now, are unique in that they come with ‘Vanilla’ Android, without any carrier or OEM modifications. They’re also typically the very first devices to get updates as they’re released by the Android team..... perhaps we’ll see a Nexus tablet as well.
October 11 is not my real birthday, just making sure you know. Don't be sending birthday gifts. I have never celebrated my birthday and would like to keep it that way. It is a cultural difference. But it is Amitabh Bachchan's birthday. Amitabh is the most recognized face on the planet.

In The Market For A Smartphone
Top Android Apps
Icecream Sandwich --> Jelly Bean --> Kulfi

Finally The iPad Has Competition

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Paul Graham: Wrong About NYC

Image representing Sean Parker as depicted in ...Image via CrunchBaseI have been to the Bay Area. I have been to northern California. And by that I don't mean the Bay Area. By northern California I mean parts of that state from where the Bay Area looks south. I have been to Los Angeles. I have been to San Diego. I have been to the valley. And by that I don't mean Silicon Valley. I mean California's vast farmlands. I have been.

I have seen the Oracle buildings. They look just like in the pictures. I have walked on the campus of Stanford University. It is just beautiful. It is an amazing, amazing place to be. I might be exhibiting some Global South bias in appreciating the architecture of the Stanford campus. What stood out for me were the Mexican style tiles. I have been.

And I have read up on it. Silicon Valley has got to be just the most fascinating place on earth. It is myth. It is legend. But the difference between Silicon Valley and New York City today is that Silicon Valley is like this giant, mature corporation, New York City is this up and coming startup. Several of the next big things will come out of New York City. (My Web Diagram)

Paul Graham, Brad Feld, Me, BBC

March 8, 2012: Next Immigration Court Date

Statue of Liberty from belowImage by Markusnl via FlickrUgh. I don't believe this. They have a court date for me. No, it is not in Chicago. No, it is not after a gap of two years from the last scheduled court date. Why, it is as early as in 2012!

Paul Graham, Brad Feld, Me, BBC
Reluctant Video Blogger
Ugh, Immigration (4)
Questions Prepared By My Lawyer For Immigration Court Date Tomorrow
Immigration Court Date: June 6, 2011: Prepared Statement
Immigration Limbo
Immigration Mess/Humiliation And Window Shopped Tech Entrepreneurship

Monday, September 26, 2011

Events: Week Of September 26

Monday, September 26
7-11:30pm Monday Night Football party hosted by The Sporting News & Gary Vaynerchuk
Slate NY, 54 W 21st St
F to 23 St

Tuesday, September 27
7:00pm Demos and Drinks
Gallery Bar, 120 Orchard Street
F to Delancey

Wednesday, September 28
12:00-1:00 PM Tech transfer: Patents, start-ups, and technology licensing at Columbia
Columbia University, Medical Center Campus, Russ Berrie Conference Room 2
A to Washington Heights

12:00-1:30pm Jason Scott: The Rise of the Metadata Warrior
New York Public Library (NYPL Labs), 476 Fifth Avenue South Court Auditorium
F to 42 St

2:30pm-5:00pm+ E-Social Summit
Microsoft Technology Center: New York
1290 Avenue of the Americas, 5th Floor
F to 47-50 St

6:30 PM NY Alt Net Meetup: How Manages its Schema Migrations and Deployments
Microsoft Offices, 1290 Avenue of the Americas, 6th Floor

Thursday, September 29
6:30-9:30pm Digital DUMBO's Fashion Night Out: Official T-Shirt Release Party with Brooklyn Industries and Radballs
The Dumbo Loft, 155 Water Street
F to York

Friday, September 30
12:30-2:00 PM TekServe: The Power Of Custom Business Apps: Luncheon And Panel Discussion
OGilvy, 636 11th Avenue Btw. 46th & 47th Streets

Saturday, October 1
11:00 AM-1:00 PM Live United Bridge Walk And Festival
Cadman Plaza Park, Brooklyn, NY, 11021
A/C High Street

Sunday, October 2
12:00 PM-6:00 PM Atlantic Antic
Atlantic Avenue, from Hicks Street to 4th Avenue
D/N/R/2/3/4/5/B/Q Atlantic Ave

12:00 PM-8:00 PM Seaport Diwali
South Street Seaport (Fulton&South Streets, East River Pier 17)
2/3 to Fulton
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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Water: Top Word

Google Logo officially released on May 2010Image via WikipediaWater has overtaken Brazil as the top search term for this blog. And this blog post is now the top visited post at this blog: Why I Liked The Charity Water Party.


What happened? My passion came through? I am so impressed with the Google search engine right now. Their algorithm seems to be able to sense the passion in your voice.

Sean Parker: An Outlaw No More

Source: Sean Parker

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Facebook Revamp Is Heartwarming

111Image by bsimser via FlickrEarlier I listened to a few tunes that Facebook informed me my friends had listened to and it was a good experience. I greatly liked it. And I am also noticing that Facebook now does a much, much better job of letting visitors to my page see all my activities. You get a time stamp next to each action on my part. It is now so much easier for anyone to stay in touch with me.

The subscribe thing is the best thing Facebook ever did. I don't think you should be one person to your friends and another person to your fans. And we all deserve to have a few fans.

I have not fully experienced the full set of new features, but I am reporting here to say the new Facebook has had a good start with me. It has been so good I might even seek out and watch the Zuck keynote. I already watched the Zuck parody that preceded it. Mark Zuckerberg, funny guy.

The HTML5 Whimper At F8
Facebook New Look

San Gennaro Festival

Friday, September 23, 2011

The HTML5 Whimper At F8

HTML5 video iconImage via WikipediaYesterday I meant to watch it live, but was not able to, and so I thought I would watch Zuck's speech later, but now I think I am saying a pass. The big HTML5 push I was hoping for did not happen.

Facebook New Look
HTML5 And F8

So far I am neutral about the new look. I am positive about the fact that now you will be able to see most of your wall. But I guess the whole facelift has been one for the better.

It's not only for Facebook or any one company to do HTML5. It is an industry thing. The whole industry will embrace HTML5.

Facebook New Look

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Work For Free

Reluctant Video Blogger

Eureka Moment: The Local Library On Kindle

Cover of "Kindle Wireless Reading Device,...Cover via AmazonI just found out that the local library is on Kindle.

The Next Web: Amazon launches Kindle book-lending service with 11,000 US libraries

Then I proceeded to download the free Kindle app for the PC. It looks swell on my computer.

Then I went to the New York Public Library website and found out Kindle is nowhere to be seen. I can't get the library books on to my Kindle, at least not yet. I went to the Queens Library website. And I found out the same thing.

I guess news travels faster than reality.

Once this comes to be it will be like Spotify for books. So we got books and music covered. Will someone please do the same for movies? Or I might as well go ahead and pay Netflix some money.

I grew up in Nepal. We are kind of underdeveloped.

Your Local Library On Kindle
Me: Author
My Dream: A Netflix For Books
A Netflix For Books Needed

Monday, September 19, 2011

Netflix Cut Off The Gangrene Limb

Image representing Netflix as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBaseDVDs are so yesterday. Streaming is the way to go. Streaming is Android, streaming is the iPhone. DVDs are RIM. DVDs will die faster than you realize. If Netflix had not completely distanced itself from the DVD that would have created room for another streaming only startup. Now Netflix will have better luck.

This breakup is a smart move on the part of Netflix.
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HTML5 And F8

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBaseI hope HTML5 is the biggest thing coming out of the impending Facebook conference. Facebook Messages was not the Gmail killer it was touted to be. And maybe Facebook's HTML5 push might be yet another whimper, but I hope not.

HTML5 done right could turn Facebook into a platform, it could get an operating system like reach. It already has a huge audience.

But then it is not just Facebook, the entire industry is moving full speed towards HTML5, not just Facebook. Adobe too. And pretty much everyone else. Apple. Google.

When the internet became mainstream every company wanted a website. Today every tech company wants HTML5.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The PC Was A Category And Could Not Have Been Patented

"Leopard" Icons in BlackImage via WikipediaApple going after Samsung because, well, Samsung is also bringing smartphones and tablets into the market, is such hogwash. Henry Ford was not allowed to patent cars as a category. Steve Jobs himself was not allowed to patent the PC when it first came about.

The PC was/is a category. The smartphone is a category. The tablet is a category. Already Samsung smartphones are better than the Apple smartphone. If Samsung is merely copying why is it producing better devices?

There were digital music players before the iPod came along. But Steve Jobs might have laughed if he had been sued for bringing the iPod into the market.

Apple's envy is not the Samsung hardware. It is going after Android, the operating system, any which way it can.

Events: Week Of September 19

Monday, September 19
07:00 PM - 09:00 PM Feedback Forum: Campbell McKellar & Anna Thomas of
New Work City, 412 Broadway , 2nd Floor

Tuesday, September 20
08:00 AM - 10:00 AM New York Telepresence Open House sponsored by AT&T and Cisco
AT&T, 630 Fifth Avenue (btw 50th & 51st St)

07:00 PM - 09:00 PM Skillshare Presents Creative Arts: a party, art show & lesson!
Gallery Bar, 120 Orchard St
F to Delancey

07:00 PM - 09:00 PM Post BUILD: Metro, Windows 8 and the future of .NET
Microsoft 1290 6th Avenue
B/D/F/M Rockefeller Center

Wednesday, September 21
5:30-7:30pm Technology You Can Touch
AOL Headquarters
770 Broadway

Thursday, September 22
06:00 PM - 08:00 PM Network and drink with Time, CNN and Turner executives
Time Life building, 1271 Avenue of the Americas, 8th floor
B/D/F/M Rockefeller Center

06:00 PM - 11:00 PM OBLITERATI sponsored by: Google Places
Sweet and Vicious
5 Spring St

07:00 PM - 09:00 PM Bain Capital Ventures Cocktail Hour
General Assembly
902 Broadway, 4th Floor

07:00 PM - 09:00 PM New York Tech Karaoke
Karaoke Cave
9 East 13th Street

Friday, September 23

08:30 AM - 10:00 AM DUMBO Tech Breakfast Meetup
The Gallery
108 Jay Street

Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, Prime Minister of Nepal
1245 PM to 245 PM Theresa Lang Center, The New School, 55 W 13 St

San Gennaro Festival (Saturday)
Dumbo Arts Festival (Sunday)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Finally Facebook Lets Me Reach Out To Non Friends

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBaseI have never, never, never have had any kind of a privacy issue with Facebook, like never, never, never. I have photo albums that I have shared with only a few people. That's my idea of privacy. Other than that I have long wanted a way to share with anyone and everyone, anyone who might be interested. And now looks like I can. Finally.

It is opt in. That is important. It is not by default. Or that might freak people out. Most people might not even get the news on this. Many might simply pass. This is not for everyone. But it works for me.

Facebook has such a beautiful interface. Twitter does not have it. Google Plus does not have it. I have a thing for the Facebook design.

Facebook: Introducing the Subscribe Button
ReadWriteWeb: Does Facebook's Subscribe Button Betray What the Company Was Built On?
TechCrunch: Facebook Launches Twitter-Like ‘Subscriptions’, Lets You Share With Unlimited Users
Mashable: Facebook Launches Subscribe Button for Following Anyone’s Public Updates

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Facebook For Strangers

Twitter logo initialImage via WikipediaFred Wilson: Turntable
The Color Social Graph Might Work Better For Books, Movies, Music

My current Facebook is my second Facebook account. They booted me out the first time because I was oh so busy saying hello to strangers.

I like Twitter a lot, because on Twitter everyone has a phone number. And if someone is not on Twitter, that person is not relevant, at least not relevant to the world of tech. And the transparency and the 140 character limit makes managing communication easy. It is scalable.

The first phase of web social has been about connecting with people you already know. The far phase has to be about strangers. Utter, complete strangers, people you have absolutely no hopes of meeting in person.

Talking Across Time Zones

When your engineers are in India, and you are Indian, getting on Skype is Homecoming. My name gives it away to them. By now there is what I call a global class in every country. The team leader of the top team that is part of my tech consulting network is currently on vacation in Florida.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My Dream: A Netflix For Books

In 1998 Reed Hastings founded Netflix, the lar...Image via Wikipedia
The Next Web: Amazon reportedly in talks to launch a Netflix for books: charging a fixed monthly fee for access to a library of books. Amazon will reportedly offer book publishers a substantial fee for their involvement in the program. ..... With Amazon’s Kindle platform and intimate relationships with every premium publisher on the planet, this is a unique new space only the likes of Amazon and Apple are likely to be able to cater to. ..... my bet is on Amazon to dominate thanks to its first mover advantage and a name synonymous with books. Let’s face it, iBooks hasn’t had quite the impact we would have expected to see from a digital giant like Apple. I’d argue this is because of its lacking selection of books
Your Local Library On Kindle
A Netflix For Books Needed (October 2009)

AllThingsD: Amazon in Talks to Launch Digital-Book Library: Several publishing executives said they aren’t enthusiastic about the idea because they believe it could lower the value of books and because it could strain their relationships with other retailers that sell their books

CNet: Amazon eyes Netflix-style service for e-books: publishers are wary and the latest titles may be excluded--just like with Netflix's streaming service.

Business Insider: Amazon Is Trying To Launch A Netflix Style eBook Subscription Service: the subscription service could take some time to launch since Amazon is busy trying to woo publishers and get them on board.

Events: Week Of September 12

Monthly Metro Pass

Monday, September 12 Launch Party
07:00 PM - 11:30 PM, Galapagos Art Space, 16 Main St, Brooklyn, NY
F train to York St

Tuesday, September 13
Scenios presents: How the cloud will transform production as we know it
06:30 PM - 08:30 PM, Showbiz Store & Cafe - NY, 19 W. 21st St. , Ground Floor
F/M 23rd St

Event Of The Week: TechStars NYC on Bloomberg TV Premiere Party (Free, but all seats long taken)
07:00 PM - 11:00 PM

Wednesday, September 14
Expert Speaker Night, Cisco VXI Virtulization Experience Infrustructure (Event cancelled by Organizer)
06:30 PM - 08:30 PM Cisco New York Office One Penn Plaza 34th Street ,
between 7th and 8th Avenues 9th floor
E train 34 St

Plan B: Comedy School Dropout Presents: September is Greek for "Hilarious"
8:00 PM - 9:30 PM Beauty Bar 231 E 14th St Frnt 1
L train 3rd Ave

Fashion Week Websdays with Internet Week New York
7:00 PM 200 Orchard Street
F train to 2nd Ave

Thursday, September 15
Jumping Ship - How to leave your Day Job
07:00 PM - 09:00 PM New Work City 412 Broadway, Floor 2
6 train to Canal St

Data, Design, Diabetes Innovation Challenge DEMO DAY
06:00 PM - 09:00 PM AOL HQ 770 Broadway, 6th Floor
N/R 8 St/NYU

September NYC Tech BD Breakfast (No spots left)
08:30 AM - 09:30 AM

Friday, September 16
New Work City Third Anniversary Party
08:00 PM - 11:00 PM

Saturday, September 17
Jazz Brunch at Garage Saturday: Elli Fordyce Quartet Back by Popular Demand at Garage
12-4 PM Garage Restaurant & Cafe 99 7th Ave S
1/2 Christopher St

Sunday, September 18
New York City Apple Day Festival
02:00 PM - 4:30 AM Orchard, between Grand and Broome Streets
F train to Delancey

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My 9/11 Story

My personal 9/11 story. I was in a small town in Kentucky. The locals called the cops on me. :-) ... Going to the World Trade Center site.less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet Reply

Monthly Metro Pass

Bought my first monthly metro pass today.less than a minute ago via txt Favorite Retweet Reply

Friday, September 09, 2011

Google, Zagat And Content

Image representing Associated Press as depicte...Image via CrunchBaseGoogle was not, is not a content company. Yahoo yes, AOL yes, but not Google. So I was a little surprised that Google went ahead and bought Zagat. But then Google pays entities like the Associated Press to get news stories directly on to the Google News platform. That's getting into content.

Goes on to show how unformed the mobile space is. The mobile space, the local space. Marissa Mayer might not have been able to buy GroupOn, but she sure did buy Zagat, did she not?

I was surprised and still don't fully understand, but that is not to say it is not a good move. And the price tag - undisclosed, I believe - is not outrageous.
Marissa MayerImage via Wikipedia
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Thursday, September 08, 2011

MoMo With WiFi

Why I Liked The Charity Water Party

I think last night I went to the best party ever, like ever ever. They should do this every month. (Be There, Or Be Square: The FourSquare Day Party At Sidebar) Why did I like the party so?

Charity Water Dress Code
Charity: Water
Happy World Water Day
child enjoying clean and safe drinking water f...Image via Wikipedia
(1) Great Cause

If you had to describe me in three words, you would call me a Third World Guy. Charity: Water to me feels like a pilot project to something grand, something that needs to be 1,000 times bigger and goes beyond charity, impacts large scale global policy. But what a pilot!

"Do You Have An Email Address?"
"Can You Understand This?"
"Bring Home An African Next Time"
Hawai Chappal

(2) Amazing People

With or without the cause it was just a great assembly of people. It was a large, crowded space, and you already knew you had something in common when you approached a stranger to say hello. I wish the party had started three hours earlier and lasted an hour longer. There were more people to meet.

A Mind Blowing Party

(3) Amazing Space

The space was big, huge. I have a thing for big, empty spaces. You start empty and fill it up with people. There were huge indoor plants. Parts of the roof were leaking, so it is not like they made you miss the rain outside. Curiously the place is not listed on FourSquare.

I had pineapple juice. Drinks were free the first hour. (No More Beer, No More Soda)

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Charity Water Dress Code

Charity: Water

Event: September 7
Happy World Water Day

charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing nations. ..... Almost a billion people on the planet don’t have access to clean drinking water. Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The 2011 September Campaign. Our 5-year-anniversary video from charity: water on Vimeo.

Unshaken - charity: water's campaign for Haiti from charity: water on Vimeo.

charity: water promo featuring "Time Bomb" by Beck from charity: water on Vimeo.

Brighton Love Water campaign from charity: water on Vimeo.

Top Android Apps

Image representing Instagram as depicted in Cr...Image via CrunchBaseIn The Market For A Smartphone

Facebook, to share photos.

YouTube, to get into video blogging in a big way.

Gmail, Google Voice, to work.

Twitter, to report on things, especially when at events. Hashtags rule.

Notice how my top choices are going to be to create content so people can view them on their big screens. I tend to have a bias for apps that are device agnostic. You can tell I am a HTML5 kind of guy. (Adobe Was Always Going To Do HTML5)

My top mobile apps are going to be Hashable, FourSquare and FoodSpotting. I don't eat out much. I am not that rich but, more important, I am scared for my health. But once in a while I do want to dive into the ethnic diversity of NYC cuisine. I think FourSquare can be a great networking tool.

Other than creating multi-media content on the go, I want to network like crazy. The next 1,000 people I'd like to get on a first name basis with are mostly in the NY tech ecosystem. And there the smartphone can come in handy. I particularly like Hashable. Connecting with someone on Twitter is less pressure than exchanging phone numbers and email addresses.

New Business Card On The Way