Dec. 5, 2008 SDF Games 1

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On Friday December5, 2008 at the Microsoft in Mountain View SDForum hosted “Business of New Media III Gaming: The New Frontier”. Continue reading Dec. 5, 2008 SDF Games 1

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Dec. 4, 2008 STC Joe Welinske

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On Thursday December 4, 2008 the East Bay STC hosted Joe Welinske’s presentation on “An Overview of Trends, Tools, and Technologies in Software User Assistance”. It was a preview of WritersUA’s big Software User Assistance conference March 29, 2009 in Seattle. Continue reading Dec. 4, 2008 STC Joe Welinske

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Dec. 3, 2008 SDF Security Threats

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On December 3, 2008 in Palo Alto SDForum Security SIG hosted “Security Threats to Networking Infrastructure” by Kishore Kumar, President and CEO of Pari Networks.

Kumar addressed the growing network security risks facing CXO/IT Managers and how to deal with advisories. He said Cisco’s Product Security Incident Response Team (PSIRT) releases advisories on security vulnerability related information, related to their products and networks. These advisories could adversely impact network security, availability and compliance. He showed how networking older devices manually could complicate auditing advisories and strategies for dealing with them.

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Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

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Dec. 1, 2008 SDF China Wuxi

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On December 1, 2008 at the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara, SDForum with the CSPA, Global Sourcing Alliance and Municipality of Wuxi, China presented “A Symposium on Software and Outsourcing”. Top government officials and executives were on hand to talk about China’s IT outsourcing market and investment opportunities. Continue reading Dec. 1, 2008 SDF China Wuxi

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Nov. 13, 2008 SDF Fundable Startup Roadmap 1

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On November 13, 2008 at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman in Palo Alto, SDForum presented “Crafting a Fundable Roadmap for Your Startup”. Featured speakers included Laurie Lumenti-Garty, and Shai Goldman of Silicon Valley Bank; Anthony Nassar of Venture Momentum, Allison Leopold Tilley of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP and Steve Tennant of Tennant Consulting. Text from DJCline.com

In a downturn this bad you have to figure out your own bail out plan. When going gets tough, the tough start companies. One of the markers of an economic recovery is the creation of new businesses. This all day workshop showed ways to increase your chance of success. Overall, do your homework before you leave home. Text from DJCline.com

Anthony Nassar started off with serious number crunching. He showed how small changes in your business model make big differences in how fast you make a profit over five years. Text from DJCline.com

Steve Tennant stressed the importance of assessing and sizing your market opportunity. Lack of paying customers is the number one reason companies fail. What unique thing can you offer that people will want to pay for? Are they willing to pay enough for you to make a profit? Tennant outlined specific steps that you do not want to skip unless you want to go out of business. Text from DJCline.com

Laurie Lumenti-Garty, and Shai Goldman showed how to put together a winning elevator pitch that will get investors hooked. They heard pitches from attendees and gave them tips to tune their pitch. The over a dozen people got to pitch the investor panel. The winner was Nambii.com Text from DJCline.com

Allison Leopold Tilley talked about crafting a due diligence-ready legal framework. You may be as leery of legal issues as of doing your taxes but you have to cover your bases. If you don’t own your idea, you won’t own your business. Text from DJCline.com

The entrepreneur panelists were Amarjit Gill of P.A. Semi, Inc., Karen Northup of Corefino, and Rick Sutton of Plus 3 Network. They shared their experiences, challenges and insights into building and securing funding for their ventures and engaged in an interactive exchange. Text from DJCline.com

Early stage investors panelists were Josh Goldman of Norwest Venture Partners, Vimal Patel, of Sierra Ventures, Steve Reale of Levensohn Venture Partners, and Jeff Yu of Angel’s Forum. They discussed VC investing trends in the current economic climate, fundability criteria, and alternatives for entrepreneurs unable to attract institutional funding. Text from DJCline.com

Rashmi Nunn attended this event.

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Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

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Nov. 6, 2008 SDF Tech Women

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On Nov. 6, 2008 at Varian Medical Systems Palo Alto, SDForum’s Tech Women’s SIG presented a career development program called “Getting To The Top” by Kathryn Ullrich, founder of PANW/ATW. Continue reading Nov. 6, 2008 SDF Tech Women

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Oct. 28, 2008 SDF Venture Circle Dinner

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October 28, 2008 at SAP Labs in Palo Alto SDForum held an exclusive Venture Circle Dinner to invited venture capitalist and sponsors. Sanjay Poonen, SVP and GM of Performance Optimization Applications at Business Objects presented “A New Class of Business User Applications: How They Are Relevant In Uncertain Economic Times.” Continue reading Oct. 28, 2008 SDF Venture Circle Dinner

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Oct. 22, 2008 SDF Case Study

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On October 22, 2008 in Palo Alto at Frank, Rimerman and Company, SDForum presented “A Case Study of Learning Lessons for Entrepreneurs”. Jim Chapman of Nixon Peabody moderated panelists Steve Baroni of Frank Rimerman, Lisa Chapman of Nixon Peabody, Dave Dembitz of Keiretsu, Anthony Nassar of Venture Momentum, George Northup of Auction Drop, and Emily Ruvalcaba of Bridge Bank. Text from DJCline.com

The idea is to put yourself in the shoes of principal at a fictional startup called GS, following the startup’s lifecycle over the next five months. Panelists were presented with problems and discuss available options. The first problem was a common one in today’s economy: a cash crunch. Text from DJCline.com

GS has successfully landed its first major partnership GS television production company for their new show  “America Has A Big Secret.” They have been doing consulting on the side, but the company has not yet begun to generate revenue from its core business. Unfortunately, the company is almost completely out of cash. This is their first big break, yet they cannot even pay their employees, taxes, rent, or even buy their own coffee. What can and should the founders do?Text from DJCline.com
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Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

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Oct. 21, 2008 SDF Biofuels

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On October 21, 2008 at the Cabaña Hotel and Resort in Palo Alto SDForum and Astia presented a Clean Tech Breakfast on the “Next Generation Biofuel Feedstock” sponsored by Nixon Peabody and Moss Adams. What’s it all about, algae? Is it algae bloom or bust? Will the scum of the earth make money? Will that stuff growing in your refrigerator help run it? Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Oct. 21, 2008 SDF Biofuels

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Oct. 15, 2008 SDF Digital Media

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On October 14, 2008 in Redwood City at Fish & Richardson hosted SDForum’s Digital Media Quarterly Series. There are over 3 billion mobile phones in the world. It is a more popular media device than computers or game consoles. Media companies are looking for ways to get applications and content to this potential market.

Mike Doran of Fish & Richardson moderated panelists Etay Gafni of Veodia, Beau Laskey of Steamboat Ventures and Louisa Shipnuck of IBM. They discussed the trends in mobile media investment. Text from DJCline.com.

Shipnuck said there are three categories of consumers. Early adopters drive the trends. These “gadgeteers” are the most sought after consumers but the most difficult to hang on to. While they are quick to buy they are quick to discard if the product poses any problems. “Cool kids” have more time than money and tend to follow the early adopters. Behind them are the “massive passives” that are still watching television at home. The Apple iPhone and Facebook are indicators of greater changes in generational consumer behavior to come. There is limit on change. She sees carriers and having a lock on mobile devices for the foreseeable future unless there is some regulatory upheaval. Text from DJCline.com.

Laskey said digital media is crowded with companies that are not profitable. YouTube is still not making money. Companies that offer real time video streaming or picture uploading paid with advertisements hold promise. He had a funny story about generational differences. He took his son and friends to a baseball game and they sat in the stands watching cartoons on their phones. Online games have low costs and generate income. Text from DJCline.com.

This market is currently creating over three billion dollars in revenue and will soon double. There will be more content and ads developed specifically for mobile devices. Ease of use and universal reception on fast networks will be drive demand. Creating barriers like DRM or proprietary carrier networks will slow adoption. The winners may be whoever attracts the most developers creating the most content on open standards. Text from DJCline.com.

Providing timely and relevant content will determine what they will use. If a consumer is at an airport, are they waiting for the next flight and killing time? Are they rushing from one plane to another and urgently want to know if their connecting flight is on time? The first may download a movie; the second just wants flight information. Text from DJCline.com.

Gafni advised developers to recognize the limits of mobile devices. Don’t try to cram a laptop or desktop experience on to a small piece of real estate. Remember that slow networks and caching will affect any flashy graphics. A simple flexible experience will attract users. Content is king. Technology just figures out a way to deliver it. WiFi holds great promise around the carrier network barriers but a device should be able to switch to whatever network are available. Text from DJCline.com.

Doran talked about how early television shows were simply radio shows in front of a camera. Most current mobile content is poor quality adapted from larger formats. New media means content tailored for the mobile device. The mobile specific content tends to have close ups of faces and runs only a minute versus an hour. He prefers having searchable text than a video but that is not the direction things are going. Text from DJCline.com.

Mobile SIG chair Joe Jasin encouraged the audience to look beyond America’s slow networks and slower adoption rates to the three billion cell phone customers around the world. These are growing markets hungry for new services and content. Screen size does not matter. Personal payment systems need to be rolled out. Korea, Japan, China, India and Israel are developing infrastructure faster than the United States. Stop complaining and start innovating. Start building infrastructure and standards now. The mobile market is a global market. Think billions, not millions. Text from DJCline.com.

Note: Bain Capital in Boston December 8, 2015.

Here are some pictures from the event.

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Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

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Oct. 9, 2008 SDF Health Search

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On October 9, 2008 in Mountain View at the Microsoft campus, SDForum’s Search SIG hosted “The Search for Better Health: Empowering Consumer Health”. Matthew Holt of The Health Care Blog moderated panelists Don Chennavasin of Yahoo, John Emerson of Healthline and Saumil Mehta of RightHealth/ Kosmix. They discussed their respective online health information services. Continue reading Oct. 9, 2008 SDF Health Search

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Oct. 7, 2008 SDF PWC

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On October 7, 2008 at Pillsbury Winthrop in Palo Alto, SDForum held the Quarterly Venture Breakfast Series in collaboration with PWC. They discussed trends in venture investments and how the economic landscape will change over the coming years. Text from DJCline.com.

Silicon Valley’s position as an investing center will change over the next decade. Venture capital investment in China will equal America’s in about 7 years. Beyond money, talent will be in short supply. China and India are working to meet the demand for technology professionals, creating their own investment and innovation infrastructure. Today over half the clean tech deals are outside the US. Is this the shape of things to come? Text from DJCline.com.

Sylvia Burks of Pillsbury Winthrop moderated panelists Bronwyn Dylla Bailey of SVB Capital, Tim Chang of Norwest Venture Partners, Brendon Kim of Altos Venture Partners and Robert Walker of Sierra Venture Partners. Text from DJCline.com.

Bronwyn Dylla Bailey of SVB Capital delivered a detailed report on venture capital trends around the world. Asia leads the way in investment by limited partners because of the better rates of return than in even the US. Equity investment in China in the second quarter of 2008 was at a record high of $1.3 billion. India was a lower 238 million dollars. For 2007 private equity investment in Eastern Europe excluding Russia was $3.01 billion, mostly in buyout deals. Latin America was 4.7 billion. These are mostly capital deals not early stage. They are fueled by local high growth rates, expanding middle classes, transitioning family business into professional management and fragmenting markets. Text from DJCline.com.

There are no guarantees this growth will continue in the current crisis environment. Developed markets like North America Europe and Israel have already slowed or declined. Stock markets around the world have been declining since the beginning of 2008. One of the signs of a downturn is the small number of IPOs. In the first half of 2008 there only seven VC backed IPOs in the US, four in Europe, three in India and fifteen in China. Future IPOs will have to wait for exits. Text from DJCline.com.

Bronwyn Dylla Bailey talked about establishing a network of connections in India before investing. The percentage of investments with offshore companies increases every year. Getting in early is important. As local markets develop, so does local investor competition. Partnering with firms that have offices in Silicon Valley and the local market helps. Products or services targeting the growing middle classes around the world show promise. Text from DJCline.com.

Tim Chang of Norwest Venture Partners thinks knowing the people and the local markets you are investing in is crucial. There are many shifty characters and he wants to work with people that are vouched for by people he already knows and trusts. Where a company is based is becoming almost an exercise in tax law. Developers may be in one country and manufacturers in another and the market may be in a third. There are several strategies to look for promising companies like acquiring a team, sending a partner or hiring a local inexperienced venture capitalist. He likes to bring potential partners to the US and work with them for a year before sending them back. Many greedy investors in developing markets have never seen a major downturn and will likely drop out in this current downturn. Cultural and legal complications can increase the cost of deal. In China there can be three sets of books, one for the government, one for the investors and one for the business itself. A local bank can clear up and verify the deal. China will throw bodies at problem rather than tech. He loves the chain-smoking entrepreneur who wears sneakers and a suit because they have the experience overlooked by other Silicon Valley investors. Beware of China deals that are brought to you after being passed over by local investors. He has seen the rise of oil money investors from the Middle East and Russia. He thinks many investors and companies will fail during the downturn. The recovery may see fewer US companies. We are at risk of becoming a banana republic. Despite that he sees great opportunities for companies that carefully manage their money and can get to the other side. Text from DJCline.com.

Brendon Kim of Altos Venture Partners uses human networks but is also looking for new ideas anywhere, even online. An increasing percentage of investments are outside the US but targeted toward the US market. There will be more deals that have a mix of domestic and overseas deals. Companies want to go public in the US if they can. As for doing business in another country, you have to put someone on the ground to make decisions quickly. They want to be cash positive so they don’t lose their house. There is a desire by many Asian immigrants to be your own boss that drives people to become entrepreneurs. They take pride in their companies and their countries. Many locals resent investors’ interest in seeing their books but must learn that transparency is part of the deal. He likes the commitment of Korean entrepreneurs who put their money and reputation on the line. Still, if your company has a global view and skills you can compete no matter where you are. Labor costs around the world from the Ukraine to Vietnam are increasing. Text from DJCline.com.

Robert Walker of Sierra Venture Partners says the best deals still come from local networks of people you know. It is easier to pick a management team carry out due diligence and can find out whether a company is truly profitable. He feels China is overvalued. His company has twelve employees in four countries, making them small but still international. Your company goes public wherever it makes the most sense. He has seen the rise of sovereign wealth funds from the Middle East interested in clean tech. You cannot invest in Silicon Valley without understanding what is going on around the world. Partnering with locals can give you better insight to their markets. He suspects that products and services that work in one country might be profitable adapted to local markets like online travel services. He thinks Silicon Valley will be fine because unlike Europe, we want to build companies that help not just our own country but the entire world. Our entrepreneurs want to leverage resources around the world to reach global markets as a matter of course. Text from DJCline.com.

While the rest of the business world is planning for the downturn, venture capitalists are planning for the recovery. Text from DJCline.com.

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Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

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Oct. 1, 2008 SDF Cloud Computing 2

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On October 1, 2008 at TechMart in Santa Clara, SDF hosted
“Cloud Computing and Beyond: The Web Grows up (finally)”. Several industry leaders and startups discussed the future of creating and running applications on the web and accessed by a local device. Will they be cheaper or even free compared to desktop or mainstream IT software? If enough people adopt it does it become “mainstream”?Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Oct. 1, 2008 SDF Cloud Computing 2

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Sept. 30, 2008 SDF Transportation

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On September 30, 2008 in San Francisco, SDForum and Astia held a Clean Tech Breakfast sponsored by Nixon Peabody and Moss Adams on “Innovation In Transportation”. Derek Dowsett of Moss Adams moderated panelists Dania Ghantous of Lion Cells, David Horning of Palo Alto Investors, Paul McGrath of RideSpring and Max Scheder-Bieschin of Barefoot Motors. Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Sept. 30, 2008 SDF Transportation

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Sept. 16, 2008 CSUMB, STC And The Department Of Defense

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On Tuesday September 16, 2008 at California State University at Monterey Bay (CSUMB) the School of Information Technology and Communication Design (ITCD) hosted a panel discussion on “Effective Technical Communication”. Continue reading Sept. 16, 2008 CSUMB, STC And The Department Of Defense

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Sept. 3, 2008 SDF Semantic Web

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On September 3, 2008 in Palo Alto SDForum’s Semantic Web SIG hosted two speakers on “Emerging Semantic Ad Platforms”. Advertising revenue is the prevailing model on the web today. How will it look on the Semantic Web? Will they be less annoying and more relevant? Text from DJCline.com. Continue reading Sept. 3, 2008 SDF Semantic Web

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Sept. 3, 2008 SDF Breakfast

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On September 3, 2008 SDForum’s Susan Lucas-Conwell held a strategy breakfast for volunteers and visitors. Attending were Mark Duncan, Shirley Lin, David Cheung, ArLyne Diamond, Ovidiu Feodorov, Francine Gordon, Irene Lefton, William Leong, and Dave Nielsen. Text from DJCline.com. Continue reading Sept. 3, 2008 SDF Breakfast

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Aug. 28, 2008 STC Schmooze

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On August 28, 2008 the STC Silicon Valley Chapter held its Summer Schmooze at Arthur’s in Santa Clara. There were your typical funny stories about robots, dead mice, genetic engineering, missing freeway exits and hitchhiking toddlers. You kind of had to be there. Here are some pictures from the event. Text from DJCline.com.

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STC Moves Meetings To UCSC

The STC Silicon Valley Chapter will have its next meeting September 25, 2008 from 6:00PM to 9:00 PM at the UCSC Extension campus in Cupertino. The street address is 10420 Bubb Road Cupertino, CA 95014. For directions visit www.ucsc-extension.edu. Dinner for members will be $10 and nonmembers $20.

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For Future Reference