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Month: April 2013

4/30/13

4/30/13

Good morning, All,

Above you’ll notice that we have our first sponsored ad. If you find the service useful (they can help build your Minimum Viable Product), please do support a fellow SOS members and thank you so much!

We personally do not own a tablet/iPad. We do consider them from time to time: they’re infinitely portable - we spend a lot of time on the move. But they do not offer the most important functions we need available on a computer, so came to the conclusion that it’s a half computer – pass, and claims of the death of the computer are wholly premature. Read More...

4/23/13

4/23/13

Good morning, All,

First, you’ll notice that we have our first sponsored ad – it’s one our SOS members! So, if you’ve been looking forever for a technical cofounder to help you build your MVP, click on the banner above, get it done, and support a fellow member and this newsletter!  And thank you so much!

We are aware that we do spend a lot of time here talking about the importance of revenue models, so we shelved it for a bit. The big news in New York tech recently was that Foursquare raised a $41m round and released a new version of its iOS app as well.  The round was mostly a loan to keep the company afloat. The release of the new version of the app was meant to deflect the less-than-stellar funding announcement. Read More...

4/16/13

4/16/13

Good morning, All,

We wrote a different editorial, before yesterday’s Boston bombings. It feels inappropriate to post it today. As someone who lives in a city that also suffered an attacked, I know how difficult it is and how incomprehensible it feels. Our hearts go out to the city of Boston and to those who were affected by the violence of yesterday’s events. Here is the link to Google’s Boston person finder and we sincerely hope that you and yours are safe. What struck us is that, amid the horror and the mayhem of yesterday’s bombings, and despite the uncertainty of not knowing whether more bombs would go off (several more were later found, undetonated), people ran towards the screams to help their fellow man. Nothing justifies an act of such wanton violence, and in the horror of such sudden devastation, one would think that the first reaction would be to flee. That did not happen yesterday in Copley Square.

It was the day of the Boston Marathon: Patriot’s Day, commemorating the start of the American Revolution, and a day when strangers come together to cheer on strangers. Yesterday, strangers came together to help strangers. Doctors who were there to treat dehydration treated wounds and performed triage. Marathon runners changed course and ran towards hospitals to donate blood. In a civilized society, humanity prevails. And we will hopefully go onward and forward, taking steps to ensure that this does not happen again to more people and to other families. Read More...

4/9/13

4/9/13

Good morning, All,

Two things: first, a warning: college graduation is just around the corner and that means that a new crop of Millenials are heading our way. They’re not all the same although if you believe that the recent unemployment numbers have humbled the supremely entitled among them at all, newsflash: contrary to popular misconception on the part of many a millennial and in all fairness, not all, technical literacy does not fast-track you to the corner office. Oh, and you had me at hello: ‘unlimited days off and free lunches’ in the startup world? Not that we’ve noticed and while we’re on the subject, can we not pretend that we live in a parallel universe that revolves around each and every one of us?

Ok, we’ve steered clear of ‘Lean In,’ to date and full disclosure: we haven’t read the book, nor do we intend to. We’ve have seen the platitudes and – going for the money shot: has it occurred to anyone else that Ms. Sandberg was having her Marissa Mayer Moment here, meaning, she’d been the go-to example of the Successful Woman in Tech, keynoting and being quoted ad nauseam but was somehow not tapped to be the CEO of Yahoo! We recently attended a panel discussion where the keynote was a representative from the Lean In movement. We were curious about the movement’s next steps and what they were planning to further empower women, but she talked about herself and her career. The audience was predominantly women and yet no words of advice for the room. No game plan mentioned. See conclusion of the above paragraph. Read More...

4/2/13

4/2/13

Good morning, All,

Let’s all take a breath. Meaning, take a brief overview of what’s been going on lately: 1. A 17 year-old’s company was bought by Yahoo! for $30 million. Revenue: $0 Downloads: 1 million+. The app was disabled the day of the acquisition. Then there are the facts of the story that were not reported in this ‘remarkable’ story. Reality check: young Summly founder Nick d’Aloisio’s dad is a VP at Morgan Stanley. His mother is an attorney for a very prestigious law firm. Which helps to explain why Yoko Ono, Wendy Deng, Stephen Fry, Ashton Kutcher, Li Ka-shing, and other investors were so quick to fund it. He wasn’t just some kid coding from his bedroom in Wimbledon. 2. Y-Combinator just graduated its latest class of copycats startups: 47 companies, down from 66. Investors were unimpressed. 47? Really??? How do you mentor/accelerator 47 companies in 3 months without defying the laws of physics and common sense? 3. Because of asset seizures, I am starting my new company outside California. Has to do with California’s Prop 30, to help fund the state’s budget, and the retroactive tax. “This is not a tax,” writes Bryan Goldberg. “This is an asset seizure plain and simple. It is no different than when Hugo Chavez used the benign-sounding ‘nationalize’ to describe his seizure of private property in Venezuela.” This, while Cali’s public sector employees get private sector wages and then some: Alameda County official to retire with $400K yearly ($423,664 for life, to be exact). @bgoldberg: I'm leaving California. Will take bad weather over bad government...

Many public sector employees are now earning higher salaries than their private sector counterparts, while the technology that we create as entrepreneurs have certainly helped to curtail our privacy. Open government is a popular term but beware of newspeak. When California passed Prop 30 to help balance the state budget and aid education (we’re always suspicious when we hear that one: a lot of laws are enacted and taxes levied in the name of education. At this point, the US must have the most state of the art schools in the world, not to mention the best-educated students, but such is not the case), was it to allow public officials to retire on more than the President himself earns? If governments are going to reach into our pockets to pay outrageous retirement packages of so-called public servants, time to cap those packages, too. Which can also be made retroactive: the precedence is there, and thank you, Prop 30. Read More...

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