Sat.Mar 03, 2012 - Fri.Mar 09, 2012

Search versus Execute

Steve Blank

One of the confusing things to entrepreneurs, investors and educators is the relationship between customer development and business model design and business planning and execution. When does a new venture focus on customer development and business models ?

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The Nature Of The Firm and Work Markets

A VC : Venture Capital and Technology

Those who watched the video I posted on Sunday saw me talking about this. But I didn't do it justice so I'm going to do a full post on this. The brilliant Nobel prize winning economist Ronald Coase (who is still alive!) wrote a seminal essay called The Nature Of The Firm in 1937. This is an important work and something everyone should read. It is short, only 20 pages. The entire essay. The wikipedia page on the essay.

Trending Sources

Always Go Home with the Lady Who Brought you to the Dance

Both Sides of the Table

I had this ethical dilemma pop up on one of the first deals I even did as a VC. I had been looking around at several deals in late 2008 as the markets were tanking. I had gotten close on a couple of deals but nothing rose to the level of “must do.”

If you saw your competitor’s roadmap would it matter?

A Smart Bear: Startups and Marketing for Geeks

This is part of an ongoing startup advice series where I answer (anonymized!) questions from readers, like a written version of Smart Bear Live. To get your question answered , email me at asmartbear -at- shortmail -dot- com.

10 Ways to Build a Business Culture Like Apple

Startup Professionals Musings

One of the big advantages of being an entrepreneur and starting your company from scratch is that you get to set the culture, which is much easier than changing the culture of an existing business. The challenge is how to do it, and how to do it right.

More Trending

You Knew it was Coming: It’s Time to Talk about Google+ for Business

Blogtrepreneur | Entrepreneur Blog

Many small businesses feel overwhelmed by the multitude of social networking sites that are becoming more and more “must have”. Google+ is a relative newcomer to the social networking game but has quickly become one of the absolute necessities for any small business.

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Life Gets In The Way – Punting on SXSW

Feld Thoughts

This morning I was taking a break between meetings in San Antonio at TechStars Cloud to check my email when I saw a note from my wife Amy with the header “ I just broke my wrist.” ” The email said “ Fell on stairs. At urgent care. Got x ray. Have “dinner fork” type fracture. Pam and Ryan will get me home. Not hurting too bad. Right wrist so also lucky.” ” I called Amy immediately and got her voice mail.

The problem with investing based on pattern recognition

Chris Dixon

A famous story in artificial intelligence is how the US military developed algorithms to determine whether an image had a tank in it. They used a standard machine learning method: feed the computer a “training set” of photos, some of which had tanks in them and some of which didn’t, and let algorithms identify which features in the photos correlated to tanks being shown. This method worked for a while but then mysteriously stopped working.

Imitation - The cornerstone of Creativity | Deimar ~ Business Tips.


Business tips, growth strategies, and advice for small business owners and entrepreneurs, by Deimar Gutierrez (@deimargd

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Begin With a Job at a Startup, Then Start Your Own

Startup Professionals Musings

For those of you who want to get in on the ground floor of a new venture, but haven’t yet worked up the nerve to start your own, begin with a job at a startup. But first you should ask yourself if you are prepared for the realities.

4 Steps to maintaining your cool when faced with stinging criticism

Escape From Cubicle Nation

Yesterday morning, I came home from giving a presentation at Laid Off Camp Chandler. I was feeling so good after spending an hour with a room full of positive and eager participants who wanted to know about starting a business.

I’m getting sick of the bullshit

Seth Levine's VC Adventure

I love the start-up world. I love working with founders and young companies. I love the excitement of working on business ideas that are new and different. I love seeing the success that often comes from this hard work. I’ve never before in my professional life seen a time of such innovation and creativity. At Foundry we see more business plans now than we ever have. And what’s more, more of those business plans are really interesting (and fundable).

The Trouble With Non-tech Cofounders | TechCrunch

Startups. Mobile. Gadgets. Europe. Video. Enterprise. Venture. Social. GreenTech. Gaming. Opinion. Events. CrunchBase. Hot topics. Editor’s Picks. Apple. Facebook. Google. Android. Disrupt NYC. europe. Comment. The Trouble With Non-tech Cofounders. guest author. Thursday, February 23rd, 2012. Comments. This is a guest post by Scott Allison, CEO and founder of It seems learning to code has become a theme in 2012, and the demand is being met by Code Year and others.

The Lean Startup at SXSW 2012

Startup Lessons Learned

SXSW is less than a week away. Lean Startup ideas will be a big part of the festival this year. Last year SXSW invited me to produce an official Lean Startup track for the conference, which I did in partnership with 500 Startups.

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Overly-Direct Feedback to VC Pitches

Genuine VC

When I first started in the VC business in 2004, I usually shared some reactions with entrepreneurs whenever we passed on pursuing an investment, but I admittedly erred towards communicating generic thoughts that were fairly non-specific but perhaps mildly helpful. After a few years into this role, however, I developed a style and approach where I always try to share some type of real meaningful constructive thoughts as to why an opportunity wouldn’t be a fit for my firm.

The One Page Seed Stage Dashboard


I recently prepared this template for one of our portfolio companies and thought I’d share it. I’m a big fan of dashboards as a quick way to get a grasp on our companies. I believe all successful startups are data driven.

5 Tricks that Every Marketer Needs to Know to Exploit the New Facebook Page Design

Duct Tape Marketing

5 Tricks that Every Marketer Needs to Know to Exploit the New Facebook Page Design This content from: Duct Tape Marketing. Come March 30 th 2012 every active Facebook Fan Page will be flipped over to the new design called The Timeline.

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How to Set Business Goals that Yield Results

Growthink Blog

If you're like most people, you put some things off until the last minute. Picture a wife needing to take the kids to a ballgame, and the husband is in the middle of changing the oil on the car. Not very good planning on their part, and the result is less than desirable.

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The Sub $1bn Revenues IPO Act

A VC : Venture Capital and Technology

There's a bill in Congress to reduce the regulatory burdens for public companies that have less than $1bn in revenues and/or have been public for less than five years.    The name is too long so I call it the "sub $1bn IPO bill." " This is a good bill. This undoes some of the bad stuff done to smaller public companies in Sarbox. It should become law. I hope it will. Here are some blog posts on this topic. Related articles. Jason Mendelson on the bill.

Design Staff ? Get better data from user studies: 16 interviewing tips

Design Staff

One of my favorite parts of my job is interviewing a huge variety of people about their habits, needs, attitudes, and reactions to designs. I like the challenge of quickly getting strangers to talk freely and frankly about themselves

Wanted: More women franchise owners

Up and Running

The Franchise King® Joel Libava says the franchise industry could use more women franchisees, so he’s taken it upon himself to make sure that more women start looking into franchise ownership as a viable option to traditional corporate employment.

Entrepreneurs: Connect to Today’s Customer Network

Startup Professionals Musings

Every startup needs to understand that the customer paradigm has dramatically shifted over the past two years with pervasive social networks and smartphones.

McIntyre: Unencumbered By Reality

Ask The VC

Ryan McIntyre , one of my partners at Foundry Group , has a delightful post up this morning with a short (4 minute) video about the founding and startup of Excite on his blog titled Ctrl+Alt+Compete Documentary. Ah yes, Excite, one of the first search engines (can you name the very first one?

Roger and Mike's Hypernet Blog ? What Is the Hypernet? ? What Is.

Roger and Mike


Get better data from user studies: 16 interviewing tips

Google Ventures

One of my favorite parts of my job is interviewing a huge variety of people about their habits, needs, attitudes, and reactions to designs. I like the challenge of quickly getting strangers to talk freely and frankly about themselves, and to try figuring out new designs and products in front of me. User research shouldn’t be like the boring market surveys they read from clipboards in the mall.

This Much I Know is True

Instigator Blog

(Powered by LaunchBit ). I’m a big believer in intellectual honesty. We emphasized it at Year One Labs by pushing teams through a lean startup methodology. And when I reflect back on my failures, there were clearly times when I was lying too much to myself. Having said that, I also think founders need to be capable of lying to themselves and others – painting a picture of a present and future world where their vision is realized. Call it “exaggeration” if you’d like.

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Venture Cyclist: Four Reasons for a Business Model

Venture Cyclist

This week at Techstars during my office hours sessions, I was asked questions by several teams which each time led to the same place: please draw a business model diagram for me. Everyone could, or said they could, but in

EchoEcho finds your friends at SXSW even indoors!

Don Dodge on The Next Big Thing

The mobile social location space is heating up. EchoEcho will unveil a new version at SXSW that will find your friends indoors, where GPS doesn't work. Imagine being at the Austin Convention Center with 10,000 people. You know your friends are in the building somewhere but you can't find them.

Hey Klout, One-dimensional Reputation Is Meaningless.

Diego Basch

According to Klout, ” Your Klout Score measures your online influence on a scale of 1 to 100. ” I just read a blog post (from June 2011) that carefully analyzes all the ways in which the Klout score is flawed, and therefore meaningless (hat tip to Peter Skomoroch ). However, there is a more important reason than the flaws in the calculation: what does “online influence” even mean?

Mobile Rev-Share Changes Might Spark a Fire - NextWala


I see a larger and more vibrant MVAS eco-system emerging over the next few years, driven by rev-shares changes, broadband rollout, lower data plan prices and more in-use smartphones

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5 Things You Should Say Today

Inc Startups

They're small things--but they can completely change someone's day. I left the company years ago for another but I still run into former colleagues.

Wenger: A Rational Internet Venture Valuations Bubble

Ask The VC

As I sit here in Boulder watching MI-5, taking care of Amy , avoiding SXSW, and catching up on RSS and email, I came across a post from Albert Wenger (USV) that rang true. It’s titled A Rational Internet Venture Valuations Bubble and is insightful, clever, and though provoking. Easily the best VC post of the week. VC Post of the Day bubble internet usv valuations wenger

Video Pre-Roll Advertising: SOLVED

Redeye VC

We've all had the experience -- we want to watch a video online, but have to watch some useless pre-roll video beforehand. This often frustrates the user, doesn't deliver value to the brand, and reduces the consumer's perception of the publisher. . Finally, there's a new approach.

Our Space Project

Start Up Blog

You may remember that I met a guy on line called Raul – the Rocketeer from Romania which I posted about. Well we did our project up. Which was not just fun, but a world first. Again it wasn’t a revenue project, just a fun cool thing that is possible with the all cheap technology we have today. What was it? We sent a Lego Space Shuttle into Space. Into Orbit, 130,000 feet above earth and retrieved it via GPS. We filmed it with a Go Pro camera.