Monday, October 29, 2007

VC In Hanoi

How many double-entendres can be made about VC's in Vietnam? A lot, I'd hazard. As far as nascent hotbeds of Internet startups in Asia, I would put Vietnam at the top of the list. Developing countries that are relatively tech savvy like Vietnam can provide exactly the right mix of low-cost talent and business model innovation driven by a freedom from the legacy assumptions that can stem from a pre-existing startup and technology infrastructure. Interested? you should get in touch with my friend Landon at IDG Ventures Vietnam.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ad Of The Day: Body Armor

I found this ad block running at the bottom of the New York Times world section. Clearly, these vendors sell necessary armor to spouses, families, and friends to ship over to their loved ones fighting in Iraq. From what I've heard, this is a fairly large business, and I don't think anyone can question that it is a pretty sad state of affairs for U.S. soldiers to be reliant on family money and private charity for the combat gear that they need. Certainly it is a dereliction of duty on the part of the logistical chain.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Global Warming - Greatest Quote Ever!

Ms. Boxer said she was working to push climate legislation through the Senate, adding that she also worried about global warming. “We can see it happening, we can feel it happening,” she said. “The fashion industry is so upset because they can’t sell their cashmere sweaters.”

-The New York Times

Friday, October 19, 2007

Ad Of The Day: Facebook - McDonalds

Now I am sure that McDonald's hires MBAs and executives and such, but even still, you have to agree that this is a real triumph of Facebook ad-targeting technology at work on the Brown Facebook network:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

nice blist mentions

blist got 2 great mentions this week from leading lights Andy Sack and John Cook. We are proud & thrilled. Thank you!

Easy Business Idea Generator Protocol

Easy Business Idea Generator Protocol - I developed this system through years of experience and insight. I am seeking 1 or 2 apprentices who want to learn my system :)

Step 1: See some article about a company that you have some familiarity with.
Step 2: Remember what was worthless about that company.
Step 3: Come up with solution addressing that worthlessness.
Step 4: Profit.
Step 5: Fame.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Ad Of The Day: Linklaunder

If you can call blog comment spam advertising, and yes you can, then this is the ad of the day. You had me at the domain 'linklaunder'

Monday, October 15, 2007

Environmental & Social Justice Partners

In honor of Blog Action Day, I thought it appropriate to announce Environmental & Social Justice Partners to my limited audience. We are targeting a niche that falls between microcredit and legacy banking infrastructure in the developing world. All of you startup types will immediately recognize that if debt is not usually the best financing method for high tech startups in U.S. hubs led by experienced teams, it is probably an even worse method for innovative small businesses in the developing world that contribute to environmental sustainability and social justice - that's why ESJ is relatively uncommonly designed around the concept of micro-equity, not micro debt.

We are very keenly looking for deal flow - so please chime in. One hypothetical investment could be a farmer in Oaxaca who makes tortillas from heirloom varieties of maize that could air-freighted to high-end grocery stores in the U.S. and sold at a premium. Another example could be a cooperative of women in Balochistan whose carpet production could be marketed with a heavy emphasis on the women themselves in the West - bear in mind that it might be hard to sell me on these specific ideas :)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Beauty Of iMacros

I first came across iMacros through the world's best ever post about Facebook (specifically, Facebook flyers) from Shoemoney a couple of weeks ago. But it's only this week that I started playing around with it myself.

The best summary is that iMacros had me, ahem, auto-subbing to Truemors in under 5 minutes.

Back to Facebook flyers - Rahul made the astute observation that 'exploiters' can often offer deeper insight than analysts.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Alex Iskold - Thought Provoker

For the third or fourth time, Alex Iskold has written a deep post on, what else, The Structured Web over at RWW that provoked me into writing a comment that is worth repeating here as a blog post. Thanks for helping me with material!

Here's what I say:

"Yeah, big, big data-matching problem. I am excited about the 'wisdom of crowds' effect creating some organic commonality of xml tags much like delicious tags. I could believe that xml from Amazon and B&N and Alibris might all contain an 'author' tag. I think this organic effect is liable to be much more far-reaching than deterministic microformats, if not as neat and tidy."

Come visit us at blist :)

Monday, October 8, 2007

VMware & Yacht Racing

Diane Greene of VMware from the Merc via the Seattle Times: "I think sailboat racing taught me a lot," Greene said. Racing and running a company, she explained, require preparation, organization and "the right team." It requires a keen awareness of shifting conditions and the ability to weigh all the factors, including rivals: "What are the other boats doing?"

Clearly, that (currently) $25.8B market cap will work out for me, too, because I sail :)

Interestingly, if you spend anytime sailing, you notice that, on average the sport attracts the CEO type like your Larry Ellisons, and not the professional, lawyer type - obviously a lot of it is that sailing can take up a lot of time, so running any kind of campaign pretty much requires that you set your own schedule and own something so you don't have to bill by the hour (explicitly or implicitly).

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Ad Of The Day: Toyota Warcraft

I don't even like WoW, but what a breath of fresh air when it comes to truck ads during football games!

You might also want to check out blist :)

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

What No Link, Guy?

Guy Kawasaki wrote a great post on what entrepreneurs need to watch out for when it comes to lawyers. I am proud that Guy included my name in his post, even without a link. Well, baby steps, right? First my name, links will come later - I'll just have to keep on working.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Yes I Am A New Yorker Junkie

It feels like I have been reading the New Yorker (well the cartoons at least) practically since birth. It's by far the best magazine on any topic and has been as integral to my education as elementary school, high school, or college.

The great thing about the Internet is that you can communicate with practically anyone if you just take a little initiative.

Monday, October 1, 2007

blist demo today

We did a blist demo today in our offices and I am not trying to sound smug, but the audience was really impressed. This is getting to be a trend for us - we get a lot of 'wow's - Basically, in the current climate of low cost web app development, most new companies are trading off a lot of quality and value-add for rapid development of the 'I cloned Youtube in a weekend' variety. Not at blist, sure we work rapidly, but we are doing a lot of heavy-lifting that translates into superior value to the user - if we put a lot of work into a particular area, then, as a user, you won't have to.

Our beta list is really filling up quickly, so if you haven't thrown your email in at yet, I strongly encourage you to do so - we won't be able to let everyone in right away. There must be some strong word of mouth going around because we haven't had any press coverage to speak of - and there is a ton of interest building already.