Tuesday, September 18, 2007

TechCrunch Day 1

Attending TechCrunch in San Francisco. Arrived a bit late (lunchtime) from Singapore, but caught the tail end of an interesting keynote session with David Filo (co-founder Yahoo!), Chad Hurley (co-founder YouTube) and Marc Andressen (founder Netscape and Opsware, co-founder Ning). I am shooting video which I will upload and share at some point.

Met Marissa Mayer (apparently Google is going to present a new product here) and thanked her for her support of iX Conference in Singapore. She had recommended Douglas Merrill as a keynote for iX, and he did a fantastic job.

- Mike Arrington mentioned that Yahoo bought Zimbra today for US$ 350m
- Storyblender and MusicShake are most popular from Session 3, copyright seems to be a big concern for the VCs, there's a lot of interest in video media, some comments about the viability of Flock (in competition with Firefox)
- AOL launches Bluestring, a new site that allows you to "pull in all your image, video, and audio content from across the web and mix them together into a slide show" presentation
- Cake Financial presents a way to share investment information with your community (or benefit from what the people like you are investing in), without disclosing dollars or private financial information
- DocStoc has given a good presentation on their applications that helps users share professional documents, followed by Teach the People, doing the same thing with educational videos that you share with your community (they call it eBay for learning) - get the idea - it's all business ideas targeted at community building online
- during the panel discusion, Yossi Vardi mentioned Teddy Rosevelt's "Man in the Arena" speech at Sorbonne, a sort of ode to the entrepreneur (read the highlighted bit or search for 'arena')
- Mike Arrington interviews Mark Zuckerberg, young CEO of Facebook - which is *THE HOT* community site (70m monthly users, 40m active users, 4x growth in the last year, 50% international)
- there are real 'platform' issues about applications (about 4k apps so far, 80k registered developers), who owns them, whether Facebook will buy them, exploitative hacks, etc
- Mark Zuckerberg announces a US$ 10m fund called FB Fund (backed by Excel and Founders Fund) - they will grant (not invest) 25-250k in companies that are creating applications for the Facebook platform (send email to 'platform@facebook.com'), wow!

Here's a video recording of Mike Arrington's chat with Mark Zuckerberg. It's in Windows Media, and lasts 40 minutes. The audio quality is a bit poor (no audio feed, just the camera mic).