John Furrier on Venture Capital: Freestyle Capital Closes Early Stage $27 million dollar venture fund September 13, 2011Posted by John in Technology.
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Two respected tech entrepreneurs Josh Felser and Dave Samuel officially announced their early-stage VC firm Freestyle Capital. Although Dan Primack of Fortune Term Sheet blog reported that Freestyle’s fund been public for sometime, it appears the Freestyle team wanted to announce exclusively at the Techcrunch event.
Freestyle’s two founders are entrepreneurs and have been together for over 14 years. Their magic is their knack or nose for good deals plus they have experience to add value on startup execution.
John Furrier on Venture Capital: Menlo Ventures $20 million dollar fund September 13, 2011Posted by John in Technology.
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Shervin Pershevar announced on stage at the AOL TechCrunch Disrupt 2011 conference that he and Menlo Ventures has started a $20 million fund. The fund will be called the Menlo Talent Fund.
Shervin and his team at Menlo Ventures will invest $200,000 in early stage startups. According to the news Menlo will turn around a decision super fast – within two days.
Google Q4 Earnings January 22, 2010Posted by John in Technology.
Post on Google Earning Q4 from SiliconAngle Here is the post.
Google reported revenues of $6.67 billion for the quarter ended December 31, 2009, up 17% vs the fourth quarter of 2008. Earnings for the quarter came in at $1.97 billion, up from $348 million for the same quarter of 2008. Earnings per share were $6.13, up from $1.21 a year earlier, although the 2008 figure included stock-based compensation and year-ago impairments, Adjusted, earnings rose to $6.79 from $5.10 per share.
SiliconAngle is my new blog where the in depth technical opinion happens.
Tags: Apple, Eric Schmidt, google
What happens when a warm front and cold front collide? Usually, extremely violent weather, which could include, torrential rain, lightning and thunder, hail, and tornadoes.
Steve Jobs is back at the helm. In addition to getting down and dirty on the product stuff we are now seeing him take care of some looming issues around people. He isn’t wasting any time in taking care of those matters.
What we are seeing is a clash between the “open” warm front (Google) coming from the north to Cupertino running into the “closed” cold front (Apple). Ok people here it comes.
This is about future strategy of Apple and Google. Board conflict is just the general issue that seems to get everyone’s attention. It’s not about that. It’s about the “Cloud Collision”.
Google Grandcentral Launching March 11, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
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Apparently this story might be under embargo or so I am hearing – well what can I say I am not under embargo. I have never broken an embargo ever. So if this was under embargo then I’m sorry. It’s out there
Thanks Kara Swisher for Covering The ANGLE — siliconANGLE.com February 23, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
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Thanks Kara for noticing the new blog yesterday and writing a post. We all at siliconANGLE look forward to diving deeper into the stories that you report.
siliconANGLE.com a new blog that is a collaboration between me and my friends. A new model in blogging and developing stories and analysis.
Launching a New Group Blog Tonight February 22, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
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I’m launching a new group blog tonight.
Look for info here and on twitter..
Tags: Blogging Economics, Future of Blogging
This is a teaser post. I am waiting to talk about this further, but to tease out the future of blogging economics I wanted to point out a great post worth reading. Blogging and social media is changing and is very relevant. Advertisers just don’t know how to engage with it.
Example quote from a smart blogger… “400 dedicated readers in a well-defined niche space, such as photography, beat the hell outta 40,000 drive-by users in an amorphous mob. Advertisers will want to reach those 400 people, because they know them, know what their interests are, and know that the ads served to them are going to the right people.”
This post is worth reading and really reading between the lines – in this post lies the answer to the “Future of Blogging Economics. More from me later on this topic (although I’ve been talking about this for 2 yrs).
Crowdsourcing Promo for Valentines Day From SearchMe.com – Good But Why Would Anybody Want to See Britney Spears Anymore? February 4, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
Tags: Crowdsourcing, Nicole Adams, Randy Adams, SearchMe.com
My friends Randy Adams and Nicole Adams over as Searchme.com are running a\”Share the Love\”
contest where the first prize is an all expense paid trip for two to
see Britney Spears in LA if you create the \”most romantic\” playlist
from their music search. Although it escapes me why anyone would ever
want to see Britney try to make a come back for the third time, the
Searchme Stack playlist idea is really cool.
Here are some that I just put together - I obviously need help and more time but it’s helpful if I could just grab a list from the crowd.
Maybe the crowd can work for us here. I’m terrible at picking out “love songs” for valentines day.
Go check it out at:
Will This Be Mike Arrington’s Last Post? – Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg Video Interview February 3, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
Tags: facebook, Facebook for Kids, Linda Furrier, Mike Arrington, Sheryl Sandberg
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Enjoy this interview Sheryl Sandberg the Facebook COO at Davos. Mike Arrington grabbed her for a 9 min interview. One thing that I would ask Sheryl is how they are handling the policy for kids. As Linda Furrier posted last week, she has an opinion on Facebook for Kids.
Michael Arrington: I am here with Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, and we’re at the end of the World Economic Forum at Davos. So, how was Davos for you this year?
Sheryl Sandberg: Interesting. I’ve been here before so you can kind of feel the different moods. I’d say this is the most somber Davos I’ve been to.
Michael Arrington: How many have you been to?
Sheryl Sandberg: Six I believe – four, a long time ago when I was working in the Clinton government, and last year. During the Clinton years there was an Asian financial crisis and I would say the mood then was not as up, but the pessimism was constrained to one part of the economic sphere, which was really Asia and some of the Latin American countries.
Michael Arrington: The NASDAQ was still way up then..
Sheryl Sandberg: Here there’s a real pessimism, and I think it’s earned – where is the economy going to bottom out? What don’t we understand?
Michael Arrington: This is your first Davos as a Facebook executive. Is it any different? Are people approaching you for different things? To talk about different things? What is this community giving you? What is this community giving you, what are you giving back, to this community?
Sheryl Sandberg: At Facebook we feel a lot of affinity not just for this community but for any community that is trying to do what Davos is trying to do, which is to share information. And Davos is doing it in a particular way – I think the Facebook approach is obviously more broad-based, we’re trying to include everyone in the world. But the goal is the same: bring people together, to share information and make the world more connected, and have people have a deeper understanding of themselves, others, the communities of which they want to be a part and can be a part. This has been a great year at Davos for Facebook. We’ve done a bunch of things including some polls from the stage, which has been really exciting.
Michael Arrington: Randi Zuckerberg did a poll that had around 500 responses in a matter of seconds..
Sheryl Sandberg: Yeah, I think the most compelling thing we had was there was a panel here which was on the situation in Congress with the US. And the panelists were talking about the stimulus package, and the assumption on the panel was that people were for it, and it would pass, there’s some tinkering to do. And Randi did a poll from the stage in twenty minutes, 120,000 responses, 70% of whom were against it. They said, “I don’t believe in the stimulus package”.
Michael Arrington: This was during the panel..
Sheryl Sandberg: During the panel, real live, 120,000 responses. Now it’s not a representative full sampling of the US population, but that’s a lot of responses. It completely changed the panel… The panel then were talking about, “wow, a lot of people are against this, what are we going to do?” And I think that’s exciting because Davos is a pretty exclusive thing. And the voice of people who were not invited – while everyone is always trying to get it in here, I don’t know how much you can do that.
Michael Arrington: Yeah, but you inserted it directly into a panel.
Sheryl Sandberg: Yeah, and the times I’ve been here [it was] the most direct voice of the people I’ve seen inserted into a panel so I think that was pretty exciting.
Michael Arrington: Was that an on-the-record panel with the video up on the site?
Sheryl Sandberg: I don’t know… It’s pretty exciting to take real people living in the real world, their opinions, and have people have to react to that. As opposed to their perceptions of what people are thinking, which are often very different.
Michael Arrington: So how was your first year at Facebook? We’re coming up on the one year mark in March.
Sheryl Sandberg: Yes, coming up on the one year mark. It’s been great. Facebook is a really exciting place trying to do something really important that I really believe in. And it matters. You go to different things from users to marketers to people like Obama running for office, who really want to connect with people and want a more authentic way to communicate and to listen and I think we are one of the forces and in some ways the leading force helping to provide that and that’s just a really exciting thing to be a part of.
Michael Arrington: How many users do you have now? 150 million?
Sheryl Sandberg: 150 million..
Michael Arrington: But it’s actually above that, you just don’t announce it. Every few months..
Sheryl Sandberg: *Laughs* We update it regularly.
Michael Arrington: Why does Comscore say 200 million people visit the site every month? Is it just Comscore is off or…
Sheryl Sandberg: An active user for us is someone who comes every month, at least once a month. I don’t know exactly how Comscore is measuring it.
Michael Arrington: You realize it’s like 1 in 5 people in the world that are on the internet visit Facebook.
Sheryl Sandberg: So we have 4 in 5 more to go. To get everyone connected. Joking aside, we want everyone in the world to be connected. Through Facebook, through technology, not just through us. But we really believe in enabling people to be their authentic selves on the web, and enabling people to communicate directly with each other in a very personal way.
Michael Arrington: So.. Revenue. You own revenue in the company, is that right?
Sheryl Sandberg: I definitely work on revenue, have responsibility for revenue.
Michael Arrington: So what’s monthly revenue now?
Sheryl Sandberg: Oh, you know, three dollars. $3.52 precisely.
Michael Arrington: How do you feel about revenue, where do you feel the big growth opportunities are? Do you have any new products? Micropayments for the developers, anything like that that you’re willing to talk about now?
Sheryl Sandberg: No product announcements on this video, that will disappoint but not surprise you. But you know it’s funny, a lot of people will say, “what’s Facebook’s business model?” I always find that a kind of funny question. Our business model is out there, which is: we monetize largely through advertising and a little bit through the gift revenue, the virtual gifts we have on our site. I think those continue to be the most promising avenues going forward. I think what you will see from us – you’ve seen from us some last year but you’ll see a lot this year – are the evolution of the advertising products so that they can be more targeted for advertisers and provide useful interactions for users. And I think we’re actually having a good year so far, a good quarter, and looking forward to more growth.
Michael Arrington: So you have direct ad sales, you have a team, and then you have the self-serve ads and we’ve actually looked at the self serve ads quite a bit and advertisers seem to love that. You said you have virtual gifts, but what about that micropayments platform for developers, I mean that’s a way for you to make additional money and they’re begging for it.
Sheryl Sandberg: Nothing to announce today.
Michael Arrington: Didn’t you guys already announce it a year ago?
Sheryl Sandberg: Yeah, we did do that… We haven’t updated that announcement and part of being a startup is, you know you announce things, you try to get there… not going to give anything else. Other than the $3.52. Obviously a very specific announcement.
Michael Arrington: Give me one thing then, give me more than 5,000 friends, this was promised to me personally not a year ago but close. And they’re just piling up. The friend requests are just piling up. And I know it’s only a small percentage of users have that need for more than 5,000 friends, but I’m one of them. When do I get that?
Sheryl Sandberg: I’m not going to give you a specific date, but I will reinforce the message that this is coming, and more importantly tell you why we think it’s important. Because you have these friend requests because people genuinely want to hear from you and genuinely want to connect with you. We’re not providing that functionality and we think that’s important so we are working on this and we’re working on it currently. We look forward to your having 80,000 friends… 100,000 friends.
Michael Arrington: I want to be friends with everyone that wants to be friends with TechCrunch. I don’t know if they really want to be friends with me or if they want to be friends with TechCrunch. But I want to add everyone, right now they’re piling up. What do you think of your hotel? I forgot to ask you that.. I’ve asked everyone that. It’s a 2 star hotel at a 5 star price.
Sheryl Sandberg: Yeah, it’s not the nicest hotel I’ve stayed at this year. I was a little scared at first because I walked into the room and there was no bed. I have a Murphy bed.
Who Said Blogging Killed the Typewriter – My Cousin Tom Furrier – Typewriter Repair Featured in Boston Globe February 2, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
My cousin Tom Furrier is featured in the Boston Globe today with his business as a typewriter repairman. Who said blogging killed the typewriter. Maybe he should go into blog repair
Here is the link
There is still a demand for typewriter repairs, from those, young and old, who love the sound and feel of the machines to a number of businesses who keep them in regular use. Typewriter repairman Tom Furrier admits that he’s a dinosaur. He’s one of the few typewriter repairman in the Boston area who fixes typewriters only, and not those newfangled computers, faxes, and printers as well.
When Furrier first started fixing typewriters almost 30 years ago, no office was complete without the sound of clicking typewriters. The typewriter repairman was a common sight, making service calls to offices to fix gummy keys, broken springs, cracked rubber rollers, and busted return mechanisms.
Today? Furrier once went to a law office to fix a typewriter but the twentysomething receptionist didn’t know what a typewriter was. “She kept pointing to different boxes, saying, ‘Is that a typewriter?’ or ‘Is that one there?’ I told her ‘You’re standing right next to it.’ “
But Furrier, who is also a typewriter collector and salesman, stays in business because typewriters are still used for forms, envelopes, and labels in law offices, town halls, hospitals, and funeral homes. “There are certain forms that still have to be typewritten and that are not computer-friendly, such as death and birth certificates,” says Furrier. “Every maternity ward has a typewriter, as well as funeral homes, which might seem strange in this day and age, but is good for me, of course.”
Furrier also fixes the typewriters of many writers who still tap out their drafts because they like the sound and the tactile experience.
“A lot of writers tell me that the sensory feedback from typing is different from the computer, and that typing slows down the thought process,” says Furrier, who also counts a local psychiatrist, physicians, and artists among his clientele. “Some doctors even recommend typewriters to their stroke victims, to help them build hand strength and eye coordination.”
It takes 30 minutes to an hour to fix most typewriters, and Furrier says a typewriter repairman can earn $40,000 to $50,000 a year. Furrier, who has a degree in forestry, says he wanted to work with his hands and finds great satisfaction from fixing a broken typewriter.
“I decided a long time ago that I was only going to fix typewriters – it’s typewriters or nothing,” says Furrier. “I like working with this old technology of motors, belts, pulleys, and levels.”
How does it feel to be a typewriter repairman in the age of computers? I get calls from all over the country, from people who want their typewriters fixed. Someone called me from Atlanta, which is a huge city with four million people, but not one typewriter repair shop. Another person was in Paris for the summer, and his Selectric broke, and he couldn’t find anyone in Paris to fix his typewriter, so he had to drive an hour and half outside the city to get it fixed. So we are a dying breed.
Up until the 1980s or so, there were millions of typewriters in offices all over the country. What happened to them all? Most are in landfills. Many offices just threw them in the Dumpsters. Some people did bring the machines home with them; a few workers told me that when they retired they were able to bring their typewriter home with them.
You have a lot of different typewriters in your shop, from portable electric Smith Coronas to IBM Selectrics. What’s your favorite typewriter? I like the older vintage manual typewriters, such as Royal, Olympia, Olivetti, Underwood, and Remington, and in particular, the really shiny, black lacquered machines from the 1930s. They have glass-topped keys with metal rings around them, which people love, because your fingers fit into them beautifully. They sell from $100 to $400.
Where do you get the typewriters that you sell at Cambridge Typewriters? The really nice, pristine stuff comes from collectors who pick up the machines at conventions. I also get typewriters from eBay and from people who are cleaning out their attic or homeowners who are downsizing.
And where do your typewriter parts come from? I have a graveyard in my basement, where I store tons and tons of old machines from every manufacturer. And there are supply houses that still make parts for newer machines, including ribbons.
What’s the oddest request you’ve ever gotten? One man used to come in every week and order a typewriter that could communicate with the dead. We’d tell him, “Yes, we ordered that, it’s on back order.”
I’ve seen earrings and necklaces that use typewriter keys for ornamentation. Do you sell typewriter parts to these jewelry artists? No. I don’t like to see nice machines cannibalized for jewelry. It bugs me.
People say they love the sound of a typewriter bell. Yes, the typewriter bell is a neat sound, and every brand has a different sound. When I do a repair, I always make sure the bell has a nice sustain to it. When the bell rings, it should fade out slowly. The Smith Corona has a loud distinctive bell, and the Royal has a nice pitch to it. But I don’t like the ring on a Remington machine.
Do you meet lots of people who don’t even know what a typewriter is? Surprisingly, typewriters are really popular now among teens and preteens who want to try typing on a typewriter. It’s a cool fad and they want to get that typewriter vibe.
Will typewriters ever make a comeback? No, I don’t think so, but I think there will always be a curiosity about typewriters. Typewriters will never go away completely – they’ll be around for a long, long time to come
Forget InterWebs Think InterClouds February 2, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
James writes: definitely some of the same elements are appearing in the Cloud Computing ecosphere that once helped build the Internet. Specifically, I see three key initiatives that have an analog in the Internet’s past:
1. The rising importance of academia. Several initiatives are out there that show the increasing importance of the academic pursuit of cloud computing on the overall effort.
2. Increasing interest in interoperability among cloud vendors. Surprisingly, vendors that stand to gain somewhat from cloud lock-in are admitting that customers are hesitant to move to the cloud for just that reason.
3. Carrier interest in new service opportunities. The Internet represented huge business growth for telephone carriers in the early 90s, resulting in changing that designation to data network carriers.
Internet Traffic Explosion by 2015 – Next Phase is Rich Media for Infrastructure 2.0 February 2, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
Tags: Internet Traffic 2015, Rich Media
The article today about Apple iPhone having video capabilities made me think about the scale of the net. We have to see full scale global video by 2015. However, first things first, we need an infrastructure revamp – Infrastructure 2.0.
We need to handle the traffic explosion. Here is a great deep review of the coming trend of Infrastructure 2.0 with info on the coming infrastructure revolution. The Impact of Video and Rich Media on the Internet — A ‘zettabyte’ by 2015 by the Discovery Institute.
The U.S. Internet of 2015 will be at least 50 times larger than it was in 2006. Internet growth at these levels will require a dramatic expansion of bandwidth, storage, and traffic management capabilities in core, edge, metro, and access networks. A recent Nemertes Research study estimates that these changes will entail a total new investment of some $137 billion in the worldwide Internet infrastructure by 2010. In the U.S., currently lagging Asia, the total new network investments will exceed $100 billion by 2012.
Technology remains the key engine of U.S. economic growth and its competitive edge. Policies that encourage investment and innovation in our digital and communications sectors should be among America’s highest national priorities.
New technologies are driving a deep transformation of the Internet’s capabilities and uses. We are entering a new phase. The first phase of the Internet, starting with Arpanet in 1969, was a small research project that linked together a few, and then a few thousand, scientists. They exchanged rudimentary messages and data. In the mid-1990s the second broad phase delivered the Internet to the masses with e-mail, graphical browsers, and the World Wide Web.
Today, the third phase is underway. Video over the Net portends innumerable consumer and commercial possibilities. This new medium will change every realm of communication and content. The broadcast petabyte flows of radio and television will branch out into narrowcast, multicast, mobilecast, and everycast streams. With real-time transactions and collaborations, rich images, video, and interactive virtual worlds, the Net’s current content of static text and pictures will swell to form exabyte rivers. We call this third phase of rich broadband content the Exaflood.
This Exaflood is coming. However, it will only be possible with a vast new infrastructure to match the vastness of the coming digital deluge. Building this new infrastructure will be very expensive, likely requiring some $137 billion in global new investment over the next two years alone and at least $50 billion in the U.S. Technology remains the key engine of U.S. economic growth and its competitive edge. Consummating a true broadband Internet will depend on smart communications law and an investment friendly economy.
The second phase of the Net was chiefly enabled by two broad technical advances: (1) new computer modems at the edge of the network and dramatic advances in fiber-optic communications in the core of the network, both of which supplied unprecedented physical connectivity; and (2) new logical concepts like the HTTP-based World Wide Web and software applications like the browser, which made the Net accessible to the masses.
Today, the third phase is likewise being driven by a combination of advances in physical connectivity and software innovation. Today’s residential cable modems now average more than 5 megabits per second, or 100 times faster than the 56-kilobit modems that mostly reigned at the outset of phase two. Many cable MSOs now offer 10- or even 15-megabit services. Meanwhile, the nation’s telecom companies are building a new generation of fiber-optic networks to neighborhoods and homes that will reach tens of millions of consumers in the next few years. These networks will offer an additional factor of 20 capacity increase initially and are massively scalable for the future. On the software side, user-friendly self-publishing applications have given rise to millions of blogs and myriad social networking communities. Media players and Flash applications enable the easy creation and dissemination of rich visual content.
Silicon Valley Exec Mike Homer Died Sunday – The Lost Conversation February 2, 2009Posted by John in Technology.
Tags: Mike Homer, silicon valley
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Kara Swisher has a classy post that pays tribute to Mike Homer. Mike died in his home on Sunday of a rare, neurodegenerative “prion” disease, which in Homer’s case has occurred sporadically rather than via infection (the well-known variant that occurs in animals is called mad cow disease), CJD’s incidence is one case in a million annually, and few survive beyond a year after exhibiting symptoms.
Mike Homer was a straight talking tech executive who didn’t mix words. A few years ago before Mike was diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Bud Colligan and Mike Boich went to see Mike to record a podcast on innovation and Silicon Valley. It would be one of the last times Mike would be in his normal ‘call it like he sees it’ mood. That podcast was never posted due to a hard disk error. From the description from Bud Colligan of that podcast it was a memorable conversation. I wish that we all could have heard that podcast. I’m sure his voice will carry on in the stories that he created here in Silicon Valley.
Homer is survived by his wife, Kristina, and three young children: James, Jack and Lucy.
His funeral is at Saint Raymond’s Catholic Church in Menlo Park on Thursday.