December 9, 2009

Le Web day 1: End of day show report

David SparkHere’s my end of day show report for Le Web, the Web 2.0 conference in Paris. I’ve been in Paris for the week reporting with the Traveling Geeks (watch video of us on a train). Watch the video for a quick summary of the companies I saw, plus a quick story at the end about an outbreak Robert Scoble had at the expense of the French entrepreneurs.

Companies and links mentioned in the video.

October 13, 2009

Meaningo explores the next generation of search

Ayelet Noff

meaningo-325px2-300x108In today’s world where we have an option of which search engine to use, we find ourselves perplexed regarding the question: Is Google the best that search can be? Even for those of us who consider ourselves to be Web savvy, finding the right search term can often be tricky. And once we get the search results, we must screen through an abundance of information in order to find one or two truly desired results.

To understand a little more about the world of search, let’s go through our time machine, and check back on how search started. Continue reading

October 1, 2009

SimilarWeb launches three new features

similar-web-logoAyelet NoffSimilarWeb — the Firefox add-on that enables users to discover related websites similar to ones they are currently visiting — has now made it simpler than ever to find similar content that relates to the user’s interests. The three new features include Similar Articles, Recent Buzz, and Mini-Mode, which allow the user to further research and organize finding websites and articles that appeal to their interest. (Disclosure: SimilarWeb is a Blonde2.0 client.)
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August 18, 2009

5 quick tips on using LinkedIn to start up

Christopher RollysonToday I was reminded that many entrepreneurs don’t fully appreciate how LinkedIn can shrink the business cycle in their favor, so here I’ll recount a hallway conversation in the hope that it will help you, too. Although the context is “starting up” an entrepreneurial venture, the same principles apply to job search — and for the same reasons. Entrepreneurs and job seekers all have burn rates and the need to find people with specific problems who are ready to act on the solution that the entrepreneur or job seeker proposes.
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July 30, 2009

Marc Andresseen on 17 layers of management

JD LasicaAt the Fortune Brainstorm:Tech conference in Pasadena, Calif., on July 22, 2009, one of the lighter moments came when Internet pioneer Marc Andreessen spoke on stage about “one of the defining experiences of my career” when he spent 9 months as an intern at IBM in 1990-91 when it had 400,000 employees. He used a program in the office that determined the number of layers of management between him and the CEO was 17, “from which I concluded that it was unlikely I would make a career at IBM. … It was essentially like working for the Soviet Union at the time.”

He had a great experience at IBM, but that serves as his internal reference for big companies. In this three-minute segment, recorded with a Flip Ultra HD recorder, he compares the culture of small and large companies and concludes, “Startups are where a lot of innovation happens. … But you have to get big to have a big impact. I’ve always thought an entrepreneur needs to think in terms of getting to a large size in scale in order to have a big impact.”

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July 16, 2009

The hottest game startup in Europe

Europe’s hottest online game site from JD Lasica on Vimeo.

moshiJD LasicaAt the offices of Accel Partners a week ago today during the Traveling Geeks trip to London, several of us came away especially impressed by Michael Acton Smith, founder and CEO of Mind Candy, the UK-based company that makes Moshimonsters.com.

Moshi Monsters has become Europe’s hottest online game site (or, if you prefer, social networking site) for the 7- to 11-year-old bracket. The site, which went live a bit over a year ago, has grown by word of mouth to 3 million players, and it’s just now reaching critical mass. After a marketing push, it added another 1 million members in June and likely more than a million in July, with one third of players in the US, a third in the UK and a third elsewhere.

Kids can adopt, dress up and take care of a monster of their choice. Unlike Club Penguin, where you create an avatar, wander around a 3D space and chat, Moshi Monsters “is more akin to a child-friendly social network,” Smith says. “The beauty about monsters is that everyone seems to love them. The guys like the scary zombie, Abominable Snowman type monsters, the girls like the cute ones with bows.”

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