How CloudFlare Aims to Save the Future of the Internet, With an Amazon-Style Technology Roll Out, for Free
Baby trashes bar in Las Palmas One year ago a distributed DNS and content delivery network startup called CloudFlare launched at a TechCrunch event. It didn't win. ReadWriteWeb's Frederic Lardinois wrote about its promise to "speed up your website by an average of 30% and dramatically decrease your bandwidth usage and server load by preventing spam bots and other attackers from reaching your site."
The Incredible Engagement Feedback Loops of Startup Loving TV Host Shira Lazar
You could say that Shira Lazar lives by the sword and dies by the sword, but these days media mavens like Lazar can create safety nets by engaging internet audiences with the same tools that sometimes get them in trouble. When Lazar's show about Internet trends, called What's Trending, was promptly canceled by CBS last month after someone on her staff wrongly Tweeted that Steve Jobs had died (before he had), it might have been the end of a TV show in days of old. What's Trending has built its own audience online though and a faux pas that would have axed the connection between a content producer and its audience in the past is now not such a game ender when media pros can build direct connections without complete reliance on major distribution deals. Now that the What's Trending team is on its own again, it's taking dramatic steps to build and deepen that audience by juggling a dazzling assortment of new media tools simultaneously.
The Incredible Story of Scott Kveton: Linux, Firefox, Bacon & iPhones
Geekdom may be a land of big personalities, but some peoples' stories are better known than others. One story you might not know yet is the tale of Scott Kveton's young, unusual, accelerated and admirable career. Not yet 40 years old, Scott Kveton built the organization that houses the Linux kernel and he saved the day when Firefox launched but all the download mirrors were overwhelmed. He was key to bringing the biggest web companies to the table to develop OpenID and other federated identity systems. Then he spent a year selling bacon on the internet, until flipping bacn.com to an acquirer and signing a deal to write a book about lightweight, agile startups.
PowerOne: This iPhone App Builds iPhone Apps
Does Google get social? It sure would like to and just a few weeks ago the search giant brought in-house a world renowned expert in social technology. Until the end of January, Ed Chi was a Principal Scientist of Augmented Social Cognition at the famous research institute PARC. Now he's a Research Scientist at Google.
Google Hires Twitter-Hacking PARC Scientist
Google Hires Social Software Researcher Brynn Evans
Former PARC visiting social software researcher and startup trobairitz Brynn Evans announced today that she has joined the social product group of the UX design team at Google. Evans says she was encouraged to interview by former collaborator and PARC Principal Scientist Ed Chi, who joined Google earlier this year. (Google Hires Twitter-Hacking PARC Scientist)
The Women Who Made Google Plus: 22 Developers Behind the World's Fastest Growing Social Network
Today is Ada Lovelace Day, a day dedicated to celebrating the world's first computer programmer and to share inspiring stories about women working in science, technology and math. Surely some of the most significant technical work done by women since this day last year includes the creation of what is said to be the fastest-growing social network in history, Google Plus. Launched on June 28th and just opened to the public at large late last month, Google Plus is a feature-rich social network with variable privacy and sharing settings at the core of its experience.
Fancy Hands: Virtual Assistants, Aardvark Style
"It's not about the value of the task, it's about the value of me not having to do it, or even think about it anymore." That's how Ted Roden describes Fancy Hands, his new side project that provides virtual personal assistants in the cloud for a low monthly fee. Need an appointment made for you? Research done on Fantasy Baseball players you might want to draft onto your team? Roden has hired more than 100 people based in the US and England who can perform almost any quick, legal task for you, within minutes, at any hour day or night.
I still use Fancyhands, though I feel like I should ask the service to take the time to think up uses of itself for me. I talk it up a lot as it's really saved my bacon. Ted Roden has become a person I talk to several times a year and I really enjoy his company. I interview him whenever I can about real time technology, crowd sourced labor and research hacks. by Oct 16
Techmeme is a semi-automated site that tracks the hottest conversations among tech blogs each day, with updates every five minutes. It's one of the most innovative efforts in news gathering today. In December, Techmeme hired its first human editor, freelance writer Megan McCarthy.
Techmeme's New Editor: An Interview with Megan McCarthy
Megan McCarthy did a great job running Techmeme, then media watchdog site Mediagazer. Now she's at the New York Observer, but her work curating breaking news will forever be a happy memory of mine. I love Mediagazer so much. by Oct 16
Facebook's Mysterious Hire: The Guy Who Designed Much of the iPhone
Facebook announced today that it has acquired a startup called Push Pop Press and most of the media coverage of the news has focused on Push Pop's dazzling e-book technology for clients including Al Gore. There's been some mention that one of Push Pop's co-founders, Mike Matas, was a former Apple designer. There's a whole lot more to the story than that, though. Matas wasn't just one of many Apple designers; he designed many of the key interfaces you probably interact with every day if you own an iPhone, an iPad or a Mac.
Personalized news recommendations on the go - that's the dream of many an online news nerd and the startups that would serve them. One strong entrant into this field is My6Sense, a well-designed, venture-backed, Israeli company that uses implicit behavioral data from users to recommend the most relevant content in your personal river of news. It's a good service, and one you're likely to hear a lot more about soon. The company will announce this week that it has hired Louis Gray, a self-made Silicon Valley internet celebrity and startup consultant, as its VP of Marketing and first US employee. The Good Stuff Machine Using My6Sense is easy.
My6Sense & The Geek Who Rode His Blog to the Edge of the World
Microsoft Makes Key Hire in Researcher Danah Boyd
Microsoft Research has hired social network researcher danah boyd, probably the most high profile academic in the world focused on the emerging web and its social consequences. Who is danah boyd? (She spells her own name with lower case letters.) You may have seen her when she hit the international spotlight for writing about the shift from MySpace to Facebook.
The man believed to have been imprisoned longer than anyone else in the world for the contents of a blog, Egyptian Abdul Kareem Nabeel Suleiman, has been released after four years and 10 days of detention, his supporters have announced on their blog. Suleiman, who blogged under the name Kareem Amer, was sentenced in 2006 to four years of jail for insulting religion and the leadership of Egypt on his blog. He was critical of, among other things, Egypt's treatment of women and of its Coptic Christian minority. Supporters report that during those four years, Amer was tortured, beaten, attacked by other prisoners, disowned by his family and had his books, letters and personal effects taken away. His case is of international interest not just because of his humanity, but because of the political conflict between authoritarian states and a new world of freely self-published bloggers who would challenge them with new Web technology.
History's Longest Imprisoned Blogger, Kareem Amer, is Free
Chris Messina grew up in New Hampshire, the Live Free or Die state. As a high-schooler in the early 90's he held his school's website hostage after being suspended for running an ad on it for a controversial gay rights group. Now Chris is nearing 30, today was his 29th birthday, and he just announced that he's taken a job at one of the biggest, most powerful corporations in the world. The latest chapter in the fascinating story of Chris Messina's life ends with one of the most high-profile young proponents of an Open and Distributed Web joining Google, a company that aims to organize all the information in the world and a behemoth that many free spirits online eye with ambivalence. What will the future bring for Messina and his work? A look at how he got to Google might offer some clues.
How Chris Messina Got a Job at Google
We love this story. Back in July we wrote about the inspiring experience of Peldi Guilizzoni, a lone software developer who'd built a web design mock-up tool called Balsamiq and who was opening up his financial records on his blog to show everyone how things were going. We'd been following his progress since before he launched, but just 6 weeks after Balsamiq hit the market at roughly $79 per license, we wrote that Peldi had already made $10k in revenue. That was a cute story, but now it's been just 5 months and today Peldi reports that he's just cleared $100,000 in sales of the four variations of his product. Talk about a simple tool coming along at just the right time! It's cool software, too.
Man Writes Software, Blogs About it, Makes $100k in 5 Months
How Tim O'Reilly Aims to Change Government
Some people go to Washington to try to make the government more honest; others try to make it smaller. Technologist Tim O'Reilly is spending time in Washington, and bringing Washington officials to San Francisco, to do something different - perhaps something more realistic. O'Reilly is trying to help government become a platform for innovation. A "government as platform" would supply raw digital data and other forms of support for private sector innovators to build on top of.
Expert Labs: Can an Outside Incubator Turn Government Tech-Savvy?
10 Interesting Details About Twitter's Mysterious CTO
MrBabyMan: Digg Users Revolt, Against the One Pure Man at the Top
The Man Who Made Gmail Says Real-Time Conversation is What's Next
Thoughts From the Man Who Would Sell The World, Nicely
The Man Who Looked Into Facebook's Soul
What Does it Mean to Make 5 Million Maps? Platial's Legacy