August 30, 2007

Umang Gupta : Entrepreneurial journey; Oracle to Keynote Systems

Few months back during the process of reading the book "How Innovators Connect by Rohit Agarwal", I came out with an article Failures , road to success , which showcased two Entrepreneurs - Gururaj Desh Deshpande of Sycamore and Umang Gupta of Keynote Systems.

Just came across an interesting(and motivating) podcast of Umang Gupta, where he speaks about his entrepreneurial journey(from Oracle,where he was the 17th employee to founding Gupta Technologies).He also touches upon some of the key aspects of his work-life balance, when things were not going his way as an Entrepreneur. Lots of learnings for any aspiring Entrepreneur !!!

Podcast Credits :
Podtech,India & Kamla Bhatt.

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August 29, 2007 - Another entrant in the "Video Sharing" bandwagon

After a series of tubes like ApnaTube, KonkanTV (which is better of the lot), Nautanki (and many more) ; comes another video sharing website TheBig.Tv. One of the things that always make me think is "Why would the user move from YouTube to any of the other video sharing sites" ? Google Video itself had a big loss in the market share , and this was also one of the key reasons for the acquisition of YouTube. So, convincing the end user to move from an established platform like Google Video & YouTube , would be one of the challenging factors for Big TV.

Talking about the website, the UI looks pretty organized with Videos, Shows , Contests and Editor Picks being displayed on the homepage.However, the turn off was a very high loading time , if the page is not in the cache.I have personally faced this problem with my blog, where I lost quite a no of visitors due to the high loading time of my blog sad

The positive side in BigTv is the addition of "Groups section" so that users sharing a common interest in a particular favor of music , can share music & discuss on the same.Also, along with the user generated content , there is a section named "Big Tv Shows" which showcases some known artists from the hindi TV industry and few of them were quite hilarious.It could be possible that BigTv may have signed a contract with TV channels to broadcast their content officially on the site.

These are some of my initial (mixed) reactions about TheBigTv , we have to wait & watch strategies of TheBigTv to compete with the other local (and established) players in the market !!!

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After Technorati #1 , time for Blogger - Opera pair ...

Few days back, I had posted about ThoughtsPrevail being ranked #1 on Technorati surprised Hold on, don't be surprised since, this was just a minor hiccup from Technorati side....

Now it seems some things come naturally to me and everytime when I start blogging,I find something unusual wink !!! This time around it was Blogger in association with Opera browser that blanked out all my Icons cry

So next time around,you have something to test in an unusual way , do drop me a mail lol Time to switch back to normal & conventional way of blogging !!!

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August 28, 2007

Sanjay Anandaram - No startup can be built in isolation

Mentorship is one of the most widely discussed topics in every Unconference but was extensively discussed in Open Coffee Club (OCC). One attendee in the OCC had 5 years of Entrepreneurial experience but none of his ideas really took off.The reason that he indicated was guidance & lack of proper market study.

He had an excellent suggestion that though his ideas did not really do well, he could still lend a helping hand to the other entrepreneurs by being a mentor & advisor for them(so that they don't commit the same mistakes that he had committed). Also, IMHO even if you have a vague idea of what you wish to do(either part time or full time), the first thing to be done should be to enter the Ecosystem, which helps you network and learn from other Entrepreneurs.These (Ecosystem and Mentorship) were two of most discussed points in an article by Sanjay Anandaram of JumpStartup in "The Financial Times" ; a small excerpt below:
Why we need Mentors ?
Usually, those that do not succeed realise that they have been chasing the wrong opportunity with the wrong business model and wrong team much much later in the game, if at all. What if they had been made aware of the pitfalls and dangers early on and been prepared to deal with them? What if they had had the benefit of experienced counsel from mentors and advisors? While having mentors and advisors is in itself no guarantee of success, having the right mentors can often reduce the agony of late unhappy realisations of the state of the business.

Are Indian entrepreneurs not open ?
Why are Indian entrepreneurs shy about involving advisors? While the entrepreneurial eco-system here is not as mature as in the US and the culture of mentoring is not as widely prevalent, the fact remains that most entrepreneurs are hesitant to have advisors.
Lot of learnings from the article(apart from the small gist given above) so do not miss the complete article here and here

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August 27, 2007

Apple iPhone hacked !!!

This was a really surprising news that the iPhone was hacked by a 17 year old George Hotz.Few people said that they felt that only Microsoft was buggy but now even Apple product comes with bugs however,this is a hack and not a bug !!!

As reported by the Mercury News,

Hotz seems an unlikely candidate to have hacked the world's most hyped product. The recent high-school graduate had little experience hacking cell phones, and by his own admission he feels more comfortable with a soldering iron than a piece of computer code.

Hotz's effort speaks to more than simply what a teenager can accomplish with ingenuity, determination and Internet access, analysts say. They say it echoes some of the frustrations among consumers with the closed system that AT&T and Apple have created.

The video below shows how George Hotz managed to hack the iPhone:

Read the complete story here

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August , 07 : Season of Conferences & Unconferences !!!

There are a couple of events that are scheduled in Bangalore as well as Chennai.Some of them are seasonal events - Open Coffee Club and Blogger's meet , happening on the 1st & 2nd September,2007 respectively.Some of the other unconferences & conferences are listed below:

a. SearchCamp , Chennai:

After a series of unconferences - BlogCamp , BarCamp , Podworks , WiKi Camp , Proto ; the Knowledge Foundation has another feather in their cap - SearchCamp. As the name suggests, the crux behind the two day unconference is a single word - SEARCH.

What is SearchCamp:
SearchCamp is a two day event aimed to bring together the best minds from the Search Engine Marketing(SEM) space to talk about search engine advertising, including optimization and marketing issues. This event is the first of its kind in India and will feature workshops, debates and keynotes on the present state and evolution of Search Engine Marketing.

When & where is it held ?
6th and 7th October,2007 in Tidel Park, Chennai. The charges for the event is Rs 500/- sad

It would also be good learning for people like me who are not so much versed with the SEO fundamentals .....

Interested in SearchCamp ?
If you feel interested than follow the link to register for SearchCamp

b. Oota 2.0 (Let's talk Technology over lunch) :

If you feel there is a typing mistake than think again biggrin Oota means food in Kannada language.Oota is an unconference loosely based on Lunch 2.0 in the Silicon Valley.

What exactly is Oota 2.0?
Oota 2.0 in simple terms is discussing technology over Oota(aka Lunch).So,along with the tasty lunch you also get to meet new and interesting set of people.In a nutshell, Oota 2.0 can be termed as Lunch 2.0 LAN(Lunch Area Network) smile

When & where is it held?
Friday, September 7th, 12:00PM - 2:00PM in Indiranagar (Venue yet to be finalized) ... No charges apart from the your Oota bill wink

Interested in Oota 2.0 ?
If you feel interested than follow the link or send a mail to oota 2.0 to register for this Grand & Technological Oota

c. Silicon India leadership Summit (Conference) :

As the name suggests Leader Summit would showcase some of the industry leaders speaking on topics ranging from leadership to outsourcing.

The agenda of the summit can be found here

When & where is it held ?
August 31, 2007 at Taj Residency,Bangalore

Interested in the Leadership Summit?
If you feel interested than follow the link to register for the summit. Registration charges is Rs 1000, for more details refer the following

This ends a short round up of some of the Unconferences & conferences happening in Chennai & Bangalore.

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August 25, 2007

Quotes of the day

Picked up the latest copy of Business Gyan (August,15 - September,14) .The issue has good insights into social entrepreneurship apart from the other business related stuff.There are some interesting quotes(in the magazine) which are worth taking a look:

1. No success in material terms is worth , if it achieved by unfair means : JRD Tata
2. Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal: Henry Ford
3. Education is when you read the fine print.Experience is what you get when you don't : Pete Seeger

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August 24, 2007

What before a "Business Plan" ?

This is a thought that came to my mind during the talks at BarCamp Bangalore-4 which were focussed on "Business Plans".But is it always about Business Plans?...let's find the answer.Most of us have ideas in mind but where most of us lack is the understanding of the market penetration of the idea.Take the example of blogging, when people started blogging, no one would have thought that there was so much money in blogging.Now since we know that many bloggers are earning a handful of money , some bloggers[who get a decent traffic] may feel that "We can also go into full-time blogging" but this may not be the case.Blogging is not an easy job and it is always a tough decision "Do you go full time or work(on an idea) part time"?

Similar is the case with ideas.Each one of us have ideas but it is very important to understand the penetration of the idea in reality.Along with the penetration,there are lots of other environmental factors that you should consider:
  • What is your current status?
  • Do you have any dependents?
  • Are you married or engaged? and so on....
If you consider India , such factors are very important.I just happened to speak to one of the founders of a startup[in Bangalore] regarding a job opportunity for my friend and his first question was "Are you married?" and I understood the importance of that question.A girl may prefer a person having some average work profile(in an MNC) over a budding entrepreneur who is working on an idea that would change the world !!! When you talk about a startup , it is always in terms of stake rather in salary hence, many times you may have to settle down with a much lesser salary sad

The bottom line is "In India, though there are many startups taking shape day after day, (full time) entrepreneurship is still at a nascent stage".Hence, along with the idea & it's estimated growth , it is also important to understand "Why you want to take a plunge?" and "Are you ready to go full time [since, your idea would be better only if it is taken part-time , which means it may not be worth making it as a business]".

The message is there are two sides of the coin "Business Plan" and "Life Plan". "Life Plan" is your present and targetted future in a short plan.This is very important for any aspiring entrepreneur since, it would help him/her understand whether "(S)HE IS READY FOR A FULL TIME PLUNGE"

There is a 8 point life plan from Startup Nation comprising the following:
  1. Your Current Status
  2. Your Ideal Life
  3. Your Loves: What You Really Like Doing
  4. Your Skills & Capabilities: What You Do Well
  5. Your Track Record: What You Have Experience Doing
  6. Your Ideal Work Style
  7. Your Manifesto
  8. Key Moves to Get You Where You Want to Go
You can find a detailed explanation to points(1-5) here , points(6-8) here and a sample life-plan here. Time to review your life and than your idea; since, you have to decide whether you are ready for full time Entrepreneurship or Patro-preneurship [my terminology for part time entrepreneurship] !!!

Image Courtesy:
SG Entrepreneurs Group

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Eureka 2007 : The B - Plan competition

Indian Institute of Technology(IIT) , Mumbai is organizing a B-Plan Competition called Eureka.This is your chance to turn your dream into reality lol. Some details about the competition below:

What Is Eureka ?

Eureka! is the biggest Business Plan Competition in India and one of the Top Five in the Asia-Oceanic region in terms of participation, prizes and resources. It is intended as a platform to encourage youth from across the globe to flesh out their ideas in business terms and form global enterprises that combine technology,vision and business acumen.

Past success stories from Eureka:
Listed below are some of the past winners(and runner-ups) from Eureka:

Winners of Eureka,1999:
Voyager Infotech Private Limited
Eisodus Networks Private Limited

Winners of Eureka,2000:
Myzus Private Limited

Winners of Eureka,2001:
eInfinitus Technologies Private Limited
Duesco Private Limited
Herald Logic Private Limited

Winners & Finalists of Eureka,2002:
Embedded Robot Technologies (Winner)
Theranova (Winner)
Phonologies Private Limited (Runner Up)

Winners of Eureka,2003:
PowaiLabs Techsoft Private Limited
Whizlabs Software Pvt. Ltd.

Winners of Eureka,2004:
Rhizo Technologies

Schedule of Eureka,2007:
You can check the schedule here

More details of Eureka,2007 can be found here

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August 21, 2007

Blog Day : Celebrate & spread the message of blogging

Do you have a blog or thinking of starting a blog?, than you are the one who is at least thinking of contributing to the "CHANGE ECOSYSTEM"....So, try to change the world before 31st August,2007 which is being celebrated as 'BLOG DAY'.

Why Blog Day?
Blogs have gone leaps & bounds,and spread like fire but sometimes,we have the doubt as to whether 'YOUR BLOG IS CROSSING BOUNDARIES'? So, go ahead and make your blog 'Global' by contributing to the blog day.
What will happen on the Blog Day?
As stated on "Blog Day" website:

One long moment on August 31st, bloggers from all over the world will post recommendations of 5 new Blogs, preferably Blogs that are different from their own culture, point of view and attitude. On this day, blog readers will find themselves leaping around and discovering new, unknown Blogs, celebrating the discovery of new people and new bloggers.

BlogDay posting instructions:
1. Find 5 new Blogs that you find interesting
2. Notify the 5 bloggers that you are recommending them as part of BlogDay 2007
3. Write a short description of the Blogs and place a link to the recommended Blogs
4. Post the BlogDay Post (on August 31st) and
5. Add the BlogDay tag using this link: and a link to the BlogDay web site

Spread the message of blogging by grabbing a badge(for your blog) from here

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August 19, 2007

Bangalore Open Coffee Club debuts with 50 plus !!!!

India is truly revolutionizing and so are the guys in the Silicon Valley of India.Two of the major advantages of the Unconferences are "Knowledge Sharing" and "Networking".How does it feel to learn & network,every 2 weeks? Lot's of learning and this is where I would like to start my article on "The first meetup of the Open Coffee Club,Bangalore" which was held at BrewHaha on 19th August,2007(11:00 AM).Let's do a quick recap of the meet in a Q&A style:

What is Open Coffee Club (OCC) ?
The OpenCoffee Club was started to encourage entrepreneurs, developers and investors to organise real-world informal meetups to chat, network and grow.This is the online complement to that offline network. Meet people, find out what's going on nearby you and then go and take part. More about OCC here

What exactly happened at the event?
Since, this was the opening chapter of OCC, the expectation was around 20+ people but thanks to the power of "Word of Mouth marketing (WOM)" and "Blogging" , the turnout was surprising and was close to around 50+ surprised The event started exactly on time at 11:00 AM and than started a brief round of introduction, which lasted for around an hour.Being the first meet, it was quite expected that there would be a mismatch in the expectations and hence, it was very important to decide the agenda for the next meet.There were a couple of suggestions:
  1. What strategies startups should follow to compete with some of the big guns in the IT industry?
  2. Apart from an excellent idea, there should be a market feasibility(and scalability) and hence,How do we bridge the gap between Technology and Marketing?
  3. How does an entrepreneur share ideas with other people in the group and how can (s)he get an HONEST feedback about the same?
  4. How much should be the VC involvement in OCC ?
  5. Discussions as to whether any particular venture requires VC funding? ie Some insights into VC funding?
  6. Some of the mistakes that Entrepreneurs should avoid.
[If I may have missed out some of the things discussed at OCC , than kindly leave a comment and I would add it to this list :)]

Phew,after lot of discussions now was the time to network and I also shared my part-time, partly Non-technical idea with a quite a few people and was appreciated by some of them.This was a quick check as to whether I am headed in the right direction? lol

Some of the key highlights of the event:
Apart from the discussions, the other key highlights of the event were "Startup Funding" and "Mentorship for Entrepreneurs".These key issues were addressed by people from National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN) - Laura Parkin(Executive Director, NEN & Wadhwani Foundation) & Sameer Kanth(Consultant, NEN Bangalore). Another notable attendee at the event was Yiting Shen from MIT Sloan school of Management. This is just a small example of a new and changed "Globalizing India" !!!

What exactly happened after the event (a Buffet Lunch Club) !!! smile?
Had a good lunch with Prateek & Nithya Dayal;the husband-wife team working on their startup Muziboo, Saurabh, Ramjee, Siva, Vaibhav.There were some interesting discussions about Business Blogging, Legal ways to increase traffic to your blog, Wordpress, UI Development, Unconferences, Networking .... After the talk, I thought that I should also start "Blog Consulting" wink

Crowd present at the OCC:
[Attendees who haven't provided information about their blogs are tagged with their email id's. Also,if I have missed out your name,kindly add it in the comment section...]
  1. K. Aditya
  2. Saurabh Singh
  3. Kaushik Gala
  4. Deepak Shenoy, founder of MoneYoga
  5. Pooran Prasad, co-founder of Zealous Solutions
  6. Vaibhav Pandey
  7. Harish Kumar, founder of OneBigWeb
  8. Sandeep C Senan
  9. Kiran Jonnalagadda aka Jace
  10. Manasi Baranwal
  11. Shivakumar Ganesan
  12. Prashant Acharya
  13. Gunasekaran S
  14. Sameerkanth , ConsultantNEN Bangalore
  15. Venkat Ramana
  16. Anand
  17. Piyush Gupta, Co-founder of RouteGuru
  18. R. Senthil
  19. Kiran Kadekoppa
  20. Parvez Ahmed
  21. Ajit
  22. Rohit Bansal
  23. Prateek & Nithya Dayal, Co-founders of Muziboo
  24. Karthik Jain, Co-founder of PicSquare
  25. Satish TJ
  26. Anshul Gupta
  27. Meera K , Community & News media
  28. Rajan, Co-founder of Motvik
  29. PV Sundaram
  30. Vipul Gupta
  31. Bhasker Kode,Co-founder of "The Returnable Project"
  32. Laura Parkin, Executive Director, NEN & Wadhwani Foundation
  33. Yiting Shen
  34. Saurabh
  35. Paveen Kumar
  36. Parineeth Reddy
  37. Harinath Pudipeddi
  38. Siva - now an Entrepreneur
  39. Akshat Choudary, Co-founder ActivMobs
  40. Amit Singh, Co-organizer of BCB4
  41. Ashish Solanki, Co-founder Yulop
  42. Puneeth Prasad
[Photo Courtesy : Jace]

Time to wrap up the coverage of "First OCC meetup".Last but not the least, thumbs up to the organizers of OCC - Ramjee Ganti and Vaibhav Pandey for taking this initiative and making this possible !!!

When does the next OCC happen?
OCC would be held once in 15 days and hence, the next OCC is on 2nd September,2007.For more updates , join the 'OCC Community Group'

What other bloggers are saying about OCC?
[If you have already blogged about OCC , than kindly add your link in the comments section...]

Ramjee Ganti - Bangalore Open Coffee Kick Starts with Bang

Hope to catch you all at the next "Open Coffee Club" in Bangalore !!!

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August 18, 2007

15 Dhirubhaism's : Lessons by Dhirubhai Ambani

Dhirubhai Ambani is an example of one of the greatest Indian Entrepreneurs,who was responsible for a "NEW & CHANGED INDIA".I think we can write one entire blog on Dhirubhai and still we could get new articles , day after day exclaim however, this article is about a book "Dhirubhaism by A G Krishnamurthy" , which is a must read for every Indian Entrepreneur.The book lists the 15 lessons from Dhirubhai's life and straight from the author's desk:"Dhirubhaism is an attempt to capture those unique insights that Dhirubhai shared with him in several interactions during their long association"

The lessons listed below are taken from the book itself and the credit goes to the author and hence, "I" in the article refers to Dhirubhai Ambani.

Dhirubhaism 1 - Roll up your sleeves and help.You and your team share the same DNA
I believe that the success of Reliance cannot be attributed to the qualities and achievements of one individual , or even a group of individuals, but has to be viewed as a triumph of a process, and a spirit that binds the entire Reliance family together - Dhirubhai Ambani.

Dhirubhaism 2 - Be a safety net for your team and they will perform wonders
Reliance's success is a reflection of India's capabilities,the talent of her people and the potential of her entrepreneurs, engineers, managers and workers.

Dhirubhaism 3 - Be a silent benefactor
I live the Gita - Dhirubhai Ambani

A vision has to be within reach not in the air. It has to be achievable

Dhirubhaism 5 - The arm-around-the shoulder leader
We must learn to trust. For several centuries,Indians have been brainwashed to distrust other Indians. This saps national energy. Distrust kills initiative. Distrust compels people to maneuver and manipulate.Trust and transparency stimulates entrepreneurship.

Dhirubhaism 6 - Supply creates demand
Think big, think fast and think ahead.Idea's are no one's monopoly.

Dhirubhaism 7 - Money is not product by itself.It is a by-product, so don't chase it
If you work with determination and with perfection, success will follow.

Dhirubhaism 8 - Leave the professional alone
Give (your people) the youth a proper environment. Motivate them.Extend them the support they need. Each one of them has infinite source of energy. They will deliver.

Dhirubhaism 9 - Change your orbit , constantly
Growth has no limit at Reliance.I keep revising my vision.Only when you dream it you can do it.

Pursue your goals even in the face of difficulties, and convert adversities into opportunities.

Dhirubhaism 11 - You can find a friend in every human being
I have trusted people and they have put the trust in me - Dhirubhai Ambani

Dhirubhaism 12 - Think Big
For those who dare to dream, there is a whole world to win....Dream and dare

Dhirubhaism 13 - Hold on to your dreams
Don't give up, courage is my conviction - Dhirubhai Ambani

Dhirubhaism 14 - Bet on your people
People in Reliance are our core strength and it is very important to bet on them.

Dhirubhaism 15 - BE POSITIVE
My advice to the young Entrepreneurs is not to accept defeat in the face of the odds, and challenge negative forces with hope, self-confidence and conviction.I believe that ambition and initiative will ultimately triumph.The success of the young entrepreneur will be the key to India's transformation in the new millennium - Dhirubhai Ambani.

My target is to complete this 100 page book by 21st August,2007(Tuesday) end of the day and put a review of the book on 22nd August,2007 (Wednesday)...Time now to take a small step to achieve this small milestone biggrin

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August 17, 2007

DCampBangalore : The DUX Unconference

After a series of unconferences like BarCamp, BlogCamp, PodWorks, Proto ; now comes another unconference.This time, the unconference targets two major things : "Design" and "User Experience".

Who can attend:
It should have been "Who cannot attend?". Since it is an unconference, it is open to each and everyone who has the urge to share & learn...In fact, I don't have much insights into Agile Methodology and this is a nice place to learn about new things......So it is all about Collaborative effort !!!

When and where is it held:
Though the dates have been finalized , the tentative time frame for this unconference is September,2007 (10 AM-2 PM).Venue is yet to be decided.

For registration and more information , visit DCampBangalore

Next to be featured on my blog:
Second most controversial topic in the blogosphere : How do blogger's fight plagiarism?

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August 14, 2007

Eat, Drink & Breathe like a Startup !!!

The first thought that comes to mind when you think of a starting up "Cutting (unwanted) Costs"

When you think about it on every small thing, you are an ideal startup material wink

Eat and Drink Startup:
In the interesting podcast,you find an delicious recipe to a Startup.They deal with cutting costs on Food & Drink in a startup where they talk about "Ideal(and economical) food for startups".This podcast would definitely bring you smile as well as makes us understand "Every penny is important in a startup"

[More about the podcast here ]
[More about the Book "Eat,Drink,Breathe like a Startup" here]

On a lighter note, wonder if some Indian entrepreneur has also cooked the recipe of his own startup wink

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Founders @ Work

"Founders at Work by Jessica Livingston" was one of the book's that was highly appreciated(and recommended) by the startup guru - Guy Kawasaki.The book focusses on the Entrepreneurial journey of 32 Entrepreneurs listed below:

1. Max Levchin, Cofounder PayPal
2. Sabeer Bhatia, Cofounder Hotmail
3. Steve Wozniak , Cofounder Apple Computers
4. Joe Kraus , Cofounder Excite
5. Dan Bricklin , Cofounder Software Arts
6. Mitchell Kapor , Cofounder Lotus Development
7. Ray Ozzie ,Founder Iris Associates
8. Evan Williams ,Cofounder Pyra Labs(Blogger)
9. Tim Brady ,First Non-Founding Employee Yahoo
10. Mike Lazaridis ,Cofounder Research In Motion
11. Arthur van Hoff ,Cofounder Marimba
12. Paul Buchheit ,Creator Gmail
13. Steve Perlman ,Cofounder WebTV
14. Mike Ramsay ,Cofounder TiVo
15. Paul Graham ,Cofounder Viaweb
16. Joshua Schachter ,Founder
17. Mark Fletcher ,Founder Bloglines
18. Craig Newmark ,Founder craigslist
19. Caterina Fake ,Cofounder Flickr
20. Brewster Kahle ,Founder Internet Archive, Alexa Internet
21. Charles Geschke ,Cofounder Adobe Systems
22. Ann Winblad ,Cofounder Hummer Winblad
23. David Heinemeier Hansson ,Partner 37signals
24. Philip Greenspun ,Cofounder ArsDigita
25. Joel Spolsky ,Cofounder Fog Creek Software
26. Stephen Kaufer ,Cofounder TripAdvisor
27. James Hong ,Cofounder HOT or NOT
28. James Currier ,Founder Tickle
29. Blake Ross ,Creator Firefox
30. Mena Trott ,Cofounder Six Apart
31. Bob Davis ,Founder Lycos
32. Ron Gruner ,Cofounder Alliant Computer Systems

You can take a sneak peak into the book here.I managed to find a soft copy of the book and the same can be downloaded from my esnips collection, given below lol

Founders At Work
Founders At Work.z...
Hosted by eSnips

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August 13, 2007

Scoble's way of reading (and completing) 622 RSS feeds !!!

Every morning as soon as you enter your workplace, you need to get an update from the world of Business , Startups ,Technology(or any topic of your liking).Now than, you have updates from a log of blogs and cannot complete most of them.I always find this strange problem and most of us who are habituated to reading face the same problem.

So, how do you manage to complete reading feeds in a manageable amount of time? Check out the video which demonstrates "Scoble way of reading 622 feeds every morning !!!"

Video Courtesy : Tim Ferriss

If you found the video interesting, than check the complete coverage here

Related Article : How Scoble absorbs 1000+ Emails

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August 12, 2007

Innovation : Myths and Facts

How many times in a day , do you listen to the words "No,it won't or No,you cannot" sad Yes , be it anywhere but this is one of the most simplest things to tell anyone and the most surprising part is that "Most of them who say a No, themselves don't know why they are saying a NO" biggrin

For instance,when I shared my blog with a couple of known people, I was given a comment "Your blog is very much like an ....... blog" and this could/can be true since, there being around 70 million blogs all over, there is a high level of possibility that Blog 'A' could be somewhat similar to Blog 'B' (in terms of style , not content).This brings some level of dejection but is also a learning for all the guys who want to go an extra mile exclaim Similar is the case when you have an idea and try to seek the first level of feedback, there could be mostly one of the reactions, listed below(from the book 'Myths of Innovation') :
  • This well never work.
  • No one will want this.
  • It can't work in practice.
  • People won't understand it.
  • This isn't a problem.
  • This is a problem, but no one cares.
  • This is a problem and people care, but it's already solved.
  • This is a problem, and people care, but it will never make money.
  • This is a solution in search of a problem.
  • Get out of my office/cave now.
As stated in "The Myths of Innovation" , it is not only ordinary people who give vague comments ; Sometimes very smart people say these things. Ken Olsen, founder of the Digital Equipment Corporation, said in 1977, "There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." The leading art critics in France, in response to the opening of the Eiffel Tower, made comments like, "That tragic lamppost springing up from its bowels…is like a beacon of disaster and despair."

Innovator and Spectator Gap:
The gap—the difference between how an innovator sees his work from how it's seen by others—is the most frustrating challenge innovators face. Creators expect to be well received. They look at accepted innovations and the heroes who delivered them and assume their new innovations will be treated the same way.

Notice, there is a 180% difference of view between the innovator(ideator) and the viewer(listener of the idea).

Bottom Line:
Sometimes from the negative feedback, you may germinate another idea !!! but no matter how brilliant an idea is, the gap exists. Until the innovation is accepted, it will be questioned relentlessly question

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August 10, 2007

From Ideation to Marketing : The complete LifeCycle

You have a product idea and you are not very much sure about the whereabouts than you have come to the right place!! An excellent presentation from "Winning at New Products" by Robert Gravlin focuses on the complete Product lifecycle right from "Germination of Idea" to "Marketing the product".

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August 9, 2007

Why don't you blog?

Statutory Warning:
At this very moment , there could be an article being written on similar lines on some other blog or there is already an article published on some other blog, than why have "Same wine in a new bottle"-the reason to this , later in the article

Back to Blogging business:
Over a period of time, when a blogger regularly updates his/her blog , (s)he may feel that his/her blog has unique content and (s)he is the first person to blog about it. But ideally, none of the blogs would have really UNIQUE content and this is the primary reason why many non-bloggers(including avid blog readers) don't feel like having their own personal blog cry

After taking collective feedback from non-bloggers , below are the top four reasons why people don't blog:

Blogging - a geeky stuff :
This is one of the most common misconceptions that non-bloggers have about blogging.Some feel that blogging is really a geeky stuff and you need very high technical expertise to blog.IMHO,the bare minimum equipment for blogging is FireFox[& some of the required plugins that monitor the loading time of the page as well as that can edit the HTML code(considering the simplest case)],than you are ready to blog surprised So, as a first step remove the misconception that Blogging is only for geeks but after blogging, you would definitely consider yourself a bit Geeky !!!

What and when to write:
Most of the early stage bloggers are confused about "What do I write?" phenomena.Just try noting down your interests in a sheet of paper and pick a topic(or a mixture of topics) for your blog.You need not be an expert on the topic but the bottom line is "The quality of articles (that your blog features), would reveal the dedication with which you blog".The reason for this is: Readers are always smarter than the blogger him/her self.So, start a blog only if you know that you would dedicate sometime for your blog, best solution is make a blogging time table. Depending on the availability of time,you should update your blog.

Also, one more important thing is , if you cannot dedicate time to blogging than create a MeMe where you just accumulate links , which would be a repository of information for the user.

No one reads my blog:
This is one of the most pathetic problem for any blogger.Oh I am blogging since past two weeks but no one(including my friends) is reading my blog.The fundamental reason behind blogging is not to show others about your capability but to capture your thoughts in a safe place,which is a Blog in this case biggrin If you are the one who is writing something with dedication & interest than definitely readers would be hooked to your blog.But the crux lies in creating good content.Also, whatever you write for example:on Startups, Entrepreneurship, Blogging Tips.... ; you would find that information on every alternate blog but that should be a hindrance for you.

Just write your heart out while blogging and if you cannot, than take a post from some other blog and give a linkback to that post.Some bloggers feel that every post should be original but even if you linkback,that post is original and this is how the entire Blogosphere expands and you produce readership for your blog biggrin

Oh Lord .. I am exposed:
This is the fear that most of the part time bloggers have in their mind.When you blog,you always want that when someone is doing a Google search for you,(s)he should get to your blog(as one of the search results).Now you are scared since you are now on a search engine and you are (more) visible to everyone.But keep this worry aside since, if you are blogging for a constructive reason than you have every right to get more visibility !!!

Trust me, if you write your heart out(taking the feedback from your avid readers into consideration) , day won't be far when people would recall you by your Blog URL and not your name....Your blog will be your identity !!!

(If you have some more points(reasons) , kindly add them in the comments section of the article)

So,go ahead and blog..Let others know that you have also taken a plunge into this ever expanding Blogosphere but be sure to return to this Blog wink !!!!

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August 7, 2007

Quotes of the day

1. Peter Drucker on "Enjoyment of work" -

Those who perform love what they are doing,I(Peter Drucker) am not saying that they like everything they do;but there's something quite different.

Everybody has to do a lot of routine,there's an enormous amount of routine.Every great pianist has to do three hours of playing scale each day and nobody would tell they love it,but they have to do it.It's not fun but even after 40 years you feel the experience.
Pianists have a wonderful expression I heard many years ago,I practice till I have life in my fingers.I am sure it is a dull routine but you enjoy it.

Same is the case with people in business who enjoy the work,the routine is that it's got to be done but still I enjoy the routine.This is not the difference between Mediocrity and Performing but between "A Learning organization where the organization grows(& than the whole process changes) and an organization that may be doing very well,but no one misses it after 5 o'clock !!! "

2. Bill Gates on "Team Building" -

While building a team, search for people who love to win;if it is difficult to find them, atleast look for people who hate to loose...

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August 6, 2007

A Good or great Leader ??

Everyone is a leader irrespective of the role they follow yet,there are some of the common qualities that each one of us need to follow to be a leader.As every big change is a combination of every small change, same is the case with leadership.Just happened to check out a book "24 Lessons in High Performance Management" ,where they have listed the top 10 characteristics of Leaders and if a leader meets all the 10 characteristics,than kudos!!!, he/she is a Great Leader biggrin

1. Uncompromising integrity:
It's the foundation for quality and service to both internal and external customers.

2. Absence of pettiness:
The greatest drain of energy in an organization is pettiness.Leaders understand the difference between interesting and important.

3. Works on things by priority:
This results in stability under pressure and makes for an excellent problem solver.A leader who works by priorities prepares a daily priority list:he/she starts with #1 and doesn't deal with #2 when finished, but instead deals with the new #1 and so on.

4. Courageous:
Leaders don't lead life meekly.They know there is a deep well of courage within each of us,whether or not we use it.Their creed is "It's always too soon to quit" so,keep on fighting and fighting..

5. Committed:
Leaders know that they won't die an early death by working hard in a job they love.They never hear low achievers saying,"Slow down!You're going to ruin your health!!!"

6. Goal oriented:
Leaders understand that a lack of goals starts the process of both physical and mental shutdown.Great leaders are always goal oriented(A lesson for me as well cry)

7. Unorthodox:
These are the creators,the innovators and the think-outside-the box types.They learn from their successes and from their failures.They are originals and not copy-cats.

8. Inspired enthusiasm that's contagious:
Leaders grow enthusiastic as they achieve their daily goals,which are part of the larger plan,not just daily tasks.They are acutely aware that without this contagious enthusiasm whatever mood they have will be contagious.

9. Levelheaded in times of crisis:
These are the people who do not come apart and remain steady during the time of crisis.They know that conflict overcome is strength gained.

10. Desire to help others grow:
Leaders know there is no saturation to education and that passing along knowledge and experience build synergistic relations.Have a two way feedback so that it gives the leader more room for improvement.

Work hard to achieve these qualities and if they are not fulfilled then:
An organization quits improving right after the manager quits improving !!!

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August 5, 2007

Proto 2nd Edition(21st-22nd July,2007) : A roundup...

Another small roundup of Proto , which I had missed but I guess since,most of the startups were known so, now I don't feel that I have missed Proto smile

A small presentation comprising the startups featured in Chennai,21st-22nd July,2007.

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