Thursday, October 30, 2008

John Doerr's pragmatic action points

As a follow up to the previous post (would you stand by me) and thanks to alleyinsider and BoomTown, here are John Doerr's pragmatic action points:

  1. Act now
  2. Protect vital core of business (surgical cuts, not axe)
  3. Get 18 months or more of cash
  4. Defer unnecessary expenses (swanky new office, Microsoft Windows) and be tightwad on capex. Re-prioritize all R&D. You now can't afford to do it all.
  5. Negotiate. In this climate, everything is negotiable. Including existing contracts, terms.
  6. Everyone in company should be selling, even receptionist. (This is not just about expenses, need to grow revenue).
  7. Swap cash bonuses and salaries for equity.
  8. Pay attention to where your cash is. (Treasuries, not money markets).
  9. Look 90 days ahead and assess revenue. If not there, reset plan.
  10. Over-communicate: With employees, investors, key customers. Let them know your resolve. Don't sugarcoat the situation we're in.


Thursday, October 23, 2008


Touch-screens changed the way we interact with computers and mobile devices.
Touch-screens also changed the frequency we (should) clean these devices...


Chatting with Jay Cross on informal learning and the un-book

Today I had the pleasure of meeting Jay Cross in person, after noticing him in SUN Learning Exchange the other day.

We shared some stories and had some laughs.

We shares some notes with a Veodia team by creating a short video note on our internal wiki.

We talked about the upcoming Corporate Learning Trends and Innovations 2008 event.

Jay also shared some ideas about the un-book and other project he is working on.

The unbook
View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: books book)

Jay's un-book preview:

I like Jay's ability to articulate the future in a pragmatic way.

For additional info about Jay, go to his Internet Time Blog.

View the video:


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

SUN Learning Exchange

It was great to see how my friend Jay Cross already wrote on the SUN Learning Exchange.

I am proud that Veodia is enabling SUN's informal learning initiatives through the SUN Learning Exchanges. SUN employees uses Veodia to record and share videos of critical information needed to improve knowledge transfer and collaboration, allowing them access to the right information at the right time.

More information in the press release.


Monday, October 13, 2008

Windows Mobile on the iPhone 3G

It was just a matter of time until someone would hack the iPhone, not to change the mobile carrier, but to run another OS on the iPhone.

In a Blog I saw today, Erik Kristiansen, shows his 'boot-camp' version for the iPhone.

It would be interesting to see how cross-OS capabilities would effect sales of phones hardware. Will iPhone be the best device to run Windows Mobile?


Thursday, October 9, 2008

Would You Stand By Me?

The next few months are not going to be easy.
You can read about it everywhere (alleyinsider, gigaom, venturebeat, techcrunch and many more).

And then came the Sequoia slides:

As I was reading all these "get-real" posts and looking into these slides I felt as something is missing.

Do you think/feel the same?

In general, as a startup, we can work harder, burn less money, re-prioritize development plans and do all the things you can see listed in the slides.
For example:

As my 4 years old son once told me:
"If you are sending me home, you need to come with me..."

We are all in this together.

As we can all agree, the recovery will be long

We need to keep working as a team.

As for the phrase I keep hearing "raising an internal round", reinvesting in portfolio companies is 'internal round' as well.

I know great investors and VCs who are looking beyond and investing in their portfolio companies with wisdom, connections and other non-funding ways, helping, as true partners, to overcome these hard days and to be ready for the future.

I only wish they would be more vocal about it and help/make the media balance the current state-of-mind.

So, as you 'get real', look at your investors and ask:
"Would you stand by me?"


PS - please read the Blog disclaimer

Do The Math

Next time your kids would like to 'play' on your computer or iPhone, you could make sure they have one, or you could make sure they learn something new (while trashing you machine...). is a great website for teaching your kids Math.

Comment and warning : focuses on short, time based quizzes, on a variety of topics.
So, less explanation and more fun and getting points.
Make sure this would be good for your kids before you start with it.

Another option is
BrainTuner is a great iPhone application (click the image for a direct link to the Apple store).
You can use it to stay sharp, or to prove to your kids that 3 hours sleep a night do not make you smarter...

A more generic brain/Math game is Brain Toot.
That should teach this kids a lesson...


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Sony EyePet

Sony EyePet is a great example for user interaction and design that breaks down the 2D I/O concept and supports cross generation user interaction.
It is so cool to see how every-day objects become part of the virtual world, as the virtual world become part of the physical world...

Not sure when this would be available.


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

SDForum: Cool Technologies Driving Mobile Media

Next week (6:00 PM - 8:30 PM October 14, 2008) I plan to attend the SDForum to discuss mobile media.

This panel will focus on mobile and technology trends and what do these trends mean for media, how media companies are going mobile and what the next generation of devices and
content will look and feel like. What are the devices of the future?
What content will people expect to have and what will they use? What
new technologies and services are coming our way? Who cares and who's
investing now for the future?

6:00-6:30 pm Registration, Networking, Cocktails
6:30-7:00 pm Introductions
7:00-8:00 pm Panel Discussion:
  • Etay Gafni, Veodia
  • Beau Laskey, Steamboat Ventures
  • Stephan Noll, T-Venture
  • Louisa Shipnuck, IBM
  • Moderator: Mike Doran, Fish & Richardson
8:00 pm Q&A and Networking
8:30 pm Event Concludes

Feel free to register and come over.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Slacker G2 Portable Player

Think about your business 'mission critical applications'.
Probably eMail and the other usual suspects are on your list.
For me, I cannot work without music.

I've been using Internet radio for years.
First great radio was Yahoo! launchcast. It got too heavy in the recent years.
Than was Pandora. Great selection and cool iPhone application.
Now (for the last year and a half), the king is Slacker.
With a great collections and a smart, elegant UI to create and modify stations, Slacker makes listening to music and discovering music a great joy. Beside the music, the background info on each band/singer is cool as well.

Although Slacker 'Software Player' is not Mac friendly, the online experience and the basic service is great.

Recently, I had the chance to check out the new Slacker G2 Portable Player.

Small, light and very functional (for example, protective case with a clip that works well on a belt as well as on sport gear).
Easy to use 'blackberry' design (big buttons, right-side scrolling wheel).
Simple wireless and equalizer setup.

It was great just to link the stations I have online with the device.
One of the best things about the Slacker service and the portable device is that unlike iPod/iPhone - the stations are created dynamically with out any need to buy new songs.

I connected it to the car AUX - it is better than satellite radio.
I took it to the GYM - just start running listening to James Brown (does not get better than that).

Slacker G2 Portable Player is a great improvement from the first version.

Added to my list...


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Efficient & Useless

One definition of Interaction Design is:

“designing interactive products to support people in their everyday and working lives.”
Yesterday, at San Diego airport I saw this great example for an efficient system that is useless to most of its users.

  • User A: a person visiting the bathroom
  • User B: a cleaning crew personal
  • User A: wash and dry hands
  • User B: keep the bathroom clean
Position the automatic paper disposer/machine right above the garbage hole. Minor side-effects may include: providing the user A with a wet paper to dry his hands and direct disposal of paper without the 'need' for user A to use it...

User B is very happy with the design. I've actually met him.