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Google vs Facebook

What scares Google about Twitter and Facebook is that people are using them to share links, "like" web pages, and favorite tweets. People are using Twitter and Facebook to say what they think are the most important things on the Internet.

Because Twitter and Facebook are black boxes Google can't crawl, it no longer has access to anything close to 100% of the best meta-data available for sorting and organizing the Internet.

If Google had that data – and if it its users felt they needed to set up Google accounts – it would be able to offer better, more personalized search. It would be able to recommend content and Web pages to its users without asking them to search.

Google doesn't have that data and at from it's very highest levels on down, the company is worried that its search will slowly become a less important tool for navigating the Internet.

Read more:

Google's new +1 service is not just about Google taking on Facebook. It's also a great way for Google to make its search results relevant again.

Researcher Vivek Wadwha is largely to blame (or credit) for calling attention to Google's increasingly spammy search results. His post for TechCrunch on New Year's Day entitled "Why We Desperately Need A New (And Better) Google" got people talking, and may have been one big reason why Google changed its search algorithms last month to penalize content farms like Demand Media.

Last night at a dinner for journalists sponsored by alternative search engine Blekko, Wadwha was at it again: he insisted that Google's search results still suck, that the changes didn't help, and that any search engine that relies entirely on algorithms will always be gamed by scammers looking to divert more of the search firehose their way -- there's just too much money at stake.


Tips for rasing capital

Last year, venture capitalists and angels who co-invested with them placed $7 billion into seed and early-stage deals, an 11 percent increase from 2009, according to the most recent PricewaterhouseCoopers/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree report. From the conversations I'm having in the investor community, this year is promising to be even better.

Is this a limited window of opportunity, or more? It's hard to know just yet. But as the stock market edges ever higher and the wealthier feel healthier, there's a good chance that American startups will also get their moment in the sun.

To help you get a jump-start with fundraising, I've gathered tips from active early-stage investors and entrepreneurs who managed to beat the odds by raising capital during and after the Great Recession. Herewith, in no particular order:

1. Meet angels via the entrepreneurs they've funded. Referrals carry weight, but for those without a long list of angel contacts, getting access to angels via entrepreneurs they've already funded can be equally powerful. "While most angel groups don't post a list of members, they do publicize the companies they've funded on their websites," says Richard Sudek, a member of Tech Coast Angels, a group in southern California whose members invested about $6.2 million in 2010. "It's a targeted way to get access to investors and acquire intelligence on the personality of the angel group, all in one pop," Sudek says.

2. Avoid approaching investors in July, August, and December. "The high-net-worth individuals [who] make up the angel universe tend to take extended vacations in the summer and the period between Thanksgiving and New Year's," says Jennifer Naylor, an angel investor with Golden Seeds in New York. Pitching at a screening in slow months can result in delayed response from investors or even lack of interest at lightly attended screenings. The group invested $8.7 million in 2010.

3. Let investors help you refine your pitch. "Don't enter the process blind," says Jamie Rhodes, an investor in Austin with Central Texas Angel Network, which invested $5.5 million in 2010. "Our executive director works with entrepreneurs [who] have been selected to pitch, coaching them to improve their presentations and helping them anticipate questions." Other groups, such as Tech Coast Angels, allow entrepreneurs to sit in on screenings to get a better understanding of the process.

4. Skip the jargon. "Most early angels will not have domain expertise in your industry or technology. Keep your presentation jargon-free," says Anita Brearton, who chairs Golden Seeds' Boston branch.

5. Be coachable. "Angels aren't focused only on ROI," says Tech Coast Angels' Sudek. "Most have a strong desire to mentor and help build companies.

A few links to fundrasing sites.

Causes, the startup that helps users leverage Facebook and other social sites to raise money for charity, has closed funding round led by NEA with participation from Founders Fund, Marc Benioff, Dustin Moskovitz, Ron Conway, Keith Rabois, and Karl Jacob. Scott Sandell of NEA will join as an observer on the Causes board. Causes CEO Joe Green says that the company will be using the money to build out its team, including some senior hires.

H360 Capital’s investments will primarily focus on tech entrepreneurs and businesses in their early-stage of development

March 29, 2011 – Hezekiah Griggs III today announced the formation and launch of venture capital firm, H360 Capital. The firm draws on Griggs’ extensive experience as a successful entrepreneur and networking prowess to create a new, early-stage focused venture capital firm designed to support the needs of today’s entrepreneurs. H360’s first fund will be announced in a forthcoming release.

“I’ve long known, that Innovation is the cornerstone to any thriving economy, culture, or environment,” said Griggs. “My partners and I are collectively concerned about the diversity of thought, and the entrepreneurship climate that exists today. However, there is no greater time than now, to fulfill the promise of technology’s burgeoning presence in our lives, and how it will help shape the future of how we live.”

H360 Capital’s philosophical approach to venture capital investing is simple; the firm seeks to invest in entrepreneurs at the earliest stage possible. “We realize that the most critical point of a venture is when it begins to turn its ideas into operating ventures,” commented Griggs. “In order to fulfill that vision, we will change the relationship-based component to venture capitalism, into idea-based investing.” Griggs and his Partners will serve in various capacities to assist in the development of portfolio companies, and at times take board seats to ensure the success of the ventures.


Huge investment in Social

LivingSocial is talking to investors to raise between $400 million and $500 million in additional funding, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The company got a $175 million investment from Amazon in December, but is apparently looking for more to stay within striking range of its number-one competitor, Groupon. The Journal reports it would like to get a couple big investments -- think $100 million-plus -- from some big-name "marquee" investors.


New economic order

Leading forecast expert Edward Mushinsky predicts super-bubble
due to new order in financial system.

Here are seven commonsense principles of global economic governance that they might agree on. (I discuss them in more detail in my new book, The Globalization Paradox.)

1. Markets must be deeply embedded in systems of governance. The idea that markets are self-regulating received a mortal blow in the recent financial crisis and should be buried once and for all. Markets require other social institutions to support them. They rely on courts, legal frameworks, and regulators to set and enforce rules. They depend on the stabilizing functions that central banks and countercyclical fiscal policy provide. They need the political buy-in that redistributive taxation, safety nets, and social insurance help generate. And all of this is true of global markets as well.

2. For the foreseeable future, democratic governance is likely to be organized largely within national political communities. The nation state lives, if not entirely well, and remains essentially the only game in town. The quest for global governance is a fool’s errand. National governments are unlikely to cede significant control to transnational institutions, and harmonizing rules would not benefit societies with diverse needs and preferences. The European Union may be the sole exception to this axiom, though its current crisis tends to prove the point.

Too often we waste international cooperation on overly ambitious goals, ultimately producing weak results that are the lowest common denominator among major states. When international cooperation does “succeed,” it spawns rules that are either toothless or reflect the preferences of only the more powerful states. The Basle rules on capital requirements and the World Trade Organization’s rules on subsidies, intellectual property, and investment measures typify this kind of overreaching. We can enhance the efficiency and legitimacy of globalization by supporting rather than crippling democratic procedures at home.

3. Pluralist prosperity. Acknowledging that the core institutional infrastructure of the global economy must be built at the national level frees countries to develop the institutions that suit them best. The United States, Europe, and Japan have produced comparable amounts of wealth over the long term. Yet their labor markets, corporate governance, antitrust rules, social protection, and financial systems differ considerably, with a succession of these “models” – a different one each decade – anointed the great success to be emulated.

The most successful societies of the future will leave room for experimentation and allow for further evolution of institutions. A global economy that recognizes the need for and value of institutional diversity would foster rather than stifle such experimentation and evolution.

4. Countries have the right to protect their own regulations and institutions. The previous principles may seem innocuous. But they carry powerful implications that clash with the received wisdom of globalization’s advocates. One such implication is the right of individual countries to safeguard their domestic institutional choices. Recognition of institutional diversity would be meaningless if countries did not have the instruments available to shape and maintain – in a word, “protect” – their own institutions.

We should therefore accept that countries may uphold national rules – tax policies, financial regulations, labor standards, or consumer health and safety rules – and may do so by raising barriers at the border if necessary, when trade demonstrably threatens domestic practices enjoying broad popular support. If globalization’s boosters are right, the clamor for protection will fail for lack of evidence or support. If wrong, there will be a safety valve in place to ensure that contending values – the benefits of open economies versus the gains from upholding domestic regulations – both receive a proper hearing in public debates.

5. Countries have no right to impose their institutions on others. Using restrictions on cross-border trade or finance to uphold values and regulations at home must be distinguished from using them to impose these values and regulations on other countries. Globalization’s rules should not force Americans or Europeans to consume goods that are produced in ways that most citizens in those countries find unacceptable. But nor should they allow the US or the EU to use trade sanctions or other pressure to alter foreign countries’ labor-market rules, environmental policies, or financial regulations. Countries have a right to difference, not to imposed convergence.

6. International economic arrangements must establish rules for managing interaction among national institutions. Relying on nation states to provide the essential governance functions of the world economy does not mean that we should abandon international rules. The Bretton Woods regime, after all, had clear rules, though they were limited in scope and depth. A completely decentralized free-for-all would benefit no one.

What we need are traffic rules for the global economy that help vehicles of varying size, shape, and speed navigate around each other, rather than imposing an identical car or a uniform speed limit. We should strive to attain maximum globalization consistent with the maintenance of space for diversity in national institutional arrangements.

7. Non-democratic countries cannot count on the same rights and privileges in the international economic order as democracies. What gives the previous principles their appeal and legitimacy is that they are based on democratic deliberation – where it really occurs, within national states. When states are not democratic, this scaffolding collapses. We can no longer presume that its institutional arrangements reflect its citizens’ preferences. So non-democracies need to play by different, less permissive rules.

These are the principles that the architects of the next global economic order must accept. Most importantly, they must comprehend the ultimate paradox that each of these principles highlights: globalization works best when it is not pushed too far.

Dani Rodrik is Professor of Political Economy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and the author of One Economics, Many Recipes: Globalization, Institutions, and


New Bubble Happens When We Come to the End of QE2?

Corporate profits are among the most mean-reverting of all statistics. And this makes sense unless capitalism is broke. High profits entice competitors to come in and take market share by selling for less.

If corporate profits went back (mean-reverted) to their longer-term average, P/E ratios would be close to 24 at today's prices. Corporations have some room to absorb some price increases, but at the expense of the bottom line.


Number 1 wearable computer

According to Andreessen, Jawbone's headsets are a first step to "wearable computers."

Jawbone themselves describe themselves as mostly a software company now. Venture capitalists are afraid of companies that make hardware because they traditionally require high capital expenditures, but manufacturing can be cheaply outsourced to China; even more importantly, Andreessen said, we're moving to an era where most of the value in gadgets is in the software, not the hardware.

Today smartphones are really full purpose computers we keep in our pockets. Apple calls the smartphone and tablet era the "post-PC era", but perhaps a better name would be the "truly personal computing era": we have these computers we hold closely and that are truly personal. "Wearable" computers might be the next step, and Jawbone is a bet on that possibility.


The best way to illustrate the innovativeness of business models.

How to illustrate the innovativeness of several models

- continued by predicted “Ten Technologies That Will Rock 2010.”

2011/03/12 whopping startups venture market

In its startups shares trading platform, SecondMarket CEO Mr. Silbert said he hoped to create a more transparent structure for the market.

Before any shares are traded, he says it will contact every company for approval. It will also give businesses the power to define the parameters for its trades.

For example, a company can determine the type of investors that are eligible and the structure of the auction process. Meanwhile, for investors, SecondMarket will aggregate publicly available data, including filings, and encourage companies to submit additional financial information.

SecondMarket, a leading platform to buy and sell private company shares and other illiquid assets, is set to unveil Friday its new look and social marketplace, designed to broaden the world of secondary market trading to any private company and the world's investors. "We're expanding the universe of companies that are discoverable to over 12,000," said Barry Silbert, founder and CEO of SecondMarket, in an interview. Currently, there are 50,000 members on SecondMarket, the vast majority of whom are buyers of stock.

Heretofore, SecondMarket had listed 500 companies, with the bulk of trading and interest coming from the likes of Facebook, Zynga, Groupon, to name a few. Indeed, 40% of last year's $400 million in private company trading came from trading in Facebook shares alone. With Facebook potentially hitting the public markets in 2012, SecondMarket is hoping to tee up a whole new crop of trading opportunities.

"What's interesting is that over the past 18 months, we've received inquiries from sellers in 1000 companies," Barry added. To this end, SecondMarket has developed a platform to allow demand to be created for those companies. "The idea is crowd-source which companies people want to buy and sell stock in... We're now giving the crowd the opportunity to identify the companies to invest in."

In order to aggregate demand and enable the crowd to identify which companies they're interested in, SecondMarket has tapped into the social sphere by creating a platform upon which members can create a profile for themselves, a watch list of companies, as well as a trusted network of colleagues to learn from and share activity in companies. "If you look at the way people invest in companies, it's social," Barry explained. "We're helping faciltate offline relationships online."

SecondMarket plans to capture information about the most-watched companies and aggregate the price at which buyers are willing to pay. If they have enough demand, they will aproach a company and suggest that they create a market for their stock. "There wont’ be a need to create a market unless there’s sufficient demand," said Barry.

The UI (user interface) is pretty sweet and simple. I was one of the 100 beta testers who got to check it out. Once registered, you're automatically following SecondMaket, but you can choose from the thousands of companies listed.

As SecondMarket expands, there is concern that it is helping to fuel an already overheated market and opening the doors to less viable business. Although Zynga, Facebook and Groupon are churning out significant annual revenue, it’s unlikely that the 12,000 businesses in SecondMarket’s expanded universe (the majority of which are technology companies) can boast the same. SecondMarket’s investors must be accredited — meaning they have at least $1 million in assets or an annual salary $200,000 — but Peter Falvey, a managing director at Morgan Keegan, said there’s still not enough information available to help them make prudent decisions.

“It’s hard enough to get information on Facebook,” he said. “I’m an accredited, I have an M.B.A. in finance, how do I know what these things should be valued at?”

Leadind startups rating expert Edward Mushinsky predict startups trading boost


New 1 billion ideas

Video with Jay Jamison Venture Partner, BlueRun Ventures

He's clearly betting on mobile as the billion dollar space with several recent investments in mobile ventures such as Foodspotting. Deals, mobile, location, photo sharing are all paving the way for billion dollar opportunities.

Other investment 1 billion deal see on


online - shopping rules

Rasing online - shopping in developed countries, not succeed in developing countries, the growth process is just beginning, so that the limit for startups in this area does not exist, says a leading innovative marketing expert Edward Mushinsky