On February 5, 2009 in Menlo Park at Orrick SDForumâ€™s Mobile SIG hosted â€œMobile Broadband Software Enablers and Layered-in Applications.â€ Two VC funded companies, Skyfire and Zannel revealed what they have been developing for global markets. Continue reading Feb. 5, 2009 SDF Mobile
On February 5, 2009 in Menlo Park at Orrick SDForum held â€œGreen & Clean Tech in the New Administrationâ€ exploring the players and technologies in the immediate future. The promise of reinvigorating the economy through strategic government investment is appealing.
Obama’s economic recovery plan centers on redefining industries with green technology to rebuild infrastructure. Innovation across hardware, software and networks can drive this recovery. First we must define realistic goals and determine what technology is appropriate to fund. The proposed federal funding will have long-term effects on state and local economies.
Gregory Heibel of Orrick moderated panelists ranging an advisor to the Obama campaign, Rick DeGolia of Green Wireless Systems, to local and state governments like Nanci Klein of the City of San Jose and Dan Pellissier of California Environmental Protection Agency, to investors such as Josh Becker of New Cycle Capital as well as the press like Matt Nauman of the San Jose Mercury News.
Rick DeGolia worked on the Obama campaignâ€™s energy and environmental goals. They intend to invest 150 billion dollars to generate 5 million new jobs in green technology. Within ten years they intend to essentially reduce the amount of oil we currently import to zero. They want one million hybrids on the road by 2015 that get an average150 mpg. They hope to generate ten percent of our electricity by 2012 from renewable resources. They want to implement a cap and trade program by 80 percent by 2050. Over the past thirty years, California led the country in energy efficiency. It uses fifty percent less of the energy on a per capita basis than the rest of America. These standards established by California over the last thirty years will now be applied across the country. The challenge is persuading a state like Ohio that generates one hundred percent of its electricity from coal to adopt a cap on carbon. They need help to update their infrastructure. He has managed to cut his electricity consumption in half. He also thinks there are great opportunities in water conservation.
Josh Becker sees a strong commitment from the Obama administration by the appointments of qualified technology experts. He sees 54 billion in targeted for energy technology. We currently spend 8 billion on DOE energy policy. That amount may triple over the next two years, with energy policy rivaling the Apollo program. Weatherization saves energy and creates green collar jobs. Smart grid will get 4.5 billion dollars. Two billion is for battery technology. There is 400 million for geothermal. Solar and wind is dependent on tax credits. Fuel cells and nuclear will not get as much. He thinks in the short term that weatherization may stimulate the economy. A thirty percent rebate to purchase energy efficient appliances will help a great deal. Stay involved in the political process to drive the new policies and stimulate the economy.
Nanci Klein talked about how these policies affect the city of San Jose. In fifteen years they intend to create 25,000 green jobs, cut per capita energy use by fifty percent, and generate one hundred percent of their own electricity. Government policy creates the goals and market for companies to invest. They want to incubate startups and attract existing companies to San Jose like Tesla.
Matt Nauman wonders how these projects will be funded given the current crisis, but expects renewed interest after it is over. He worries that California will not benefit from national policies because it has already picked the low hanging fruit of conservation. As a long time observer of the auto industry, it may be difficult to retool Rust Belt industry overnight. It may take a generation of car buying to shift over to electric cars. He thinks that smart monitoring devices, smart grid technology or other green tech hold promise to stimulate Silicon Valley companies. He sees employees driving conservation at work. It can be simple as not buy another incandescent bulb.
Dan Pellissier says California is blessed with tremendous natural resources. The Mojave Desert gets more solar radiation than any other place in the country and it is near twenty million people who need electricity. There are potentially geothermal 5000 megawatts that we only are using 1500 of now. We have wind power that we are generating near Tracy and Edwards. Funding and building requires creating a regulatory environment so everyone knows the rules to play by and benefit. Costs will go up and people do not want to spend more money right now for a payback many years later. There are practical limits that must be solved before you make money. Bureau of Land Management currently has 150 clean energy projects but it will take two years to approve them. He is concerned that federal guidelines will not be as strict as the Californiaâ€™s and may be â€œde-positionedâ€ in competing with other states.
New policy means new opportunity. To change one thing is to change everything.
Here are some pictures from the event.
Copyright 2009 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
On January 30, 2009 at Sun Microsystems in Santa Clara SDForum and FountainBlue hosted â€œState of the Clean Green Industryâ€. Continue reading Jan. 30, 2009 SDF Clean Energy Entrepreneur’s Conference
On January 22, 2009 at the UC Santa Cruz Extension campus in Cupertino the STC Silicon Valley Chapter hosted Suneeta Aggarwal of Tibco. She presented “The Technical Writing Profession in China” showing how TIBCO Software approached and addressed this exciting challenge. There was quite a crowd to hear her speak. Continue reading Jan. 22, 2009 STC China
On January 21, 2009 SDForum held its annual Holiday Party. Here are some pictures from that event. Continue reading Jan. 21, 2009 SDF Holiday Party
On January 16, 2009 at the SAP campus in Palo Alto, The Future Salon hosted Brad Templeton and Eric Boyd who talked about the future of automated vehicles and their possible risks and benefits on society. Continue reading Jan. 16, 2009 Future Salon Cars
On January 7, 2009 SDForumâ€™s Susan Lucas-Conwell held a strategy breakfast for volunteers and visitors. Continue reading Jan. 7, 2009 SDF Breakfast
It has been quite a year. I said it would be. Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Dec. 28, 2008 Blumbers
On December 18, 2008 at the new India Gate restaurant in Sunnyvale, STC Silicon Valley chapter held it’s Winter Schmooze. Continue reading Dec. 18, 2008 STC Schmooze
On December 9, 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 Continue reading Dec. 9, 2008 SDF PWC
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
On Thursday December 4, 2008 the East Bay STC hosted Joe Welinskeâ€™s presentation on “An Overview of Trends, Tools, and Technologies in Software User Assistance”. It was a preview of WritersUAâ€™s big Software User Assistance conference March 29, 2009 in Seattle. Continue reading Dec. 4, 2008 STC Joe Welinske
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 Ciscoâ€™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.
Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
On December 3, 2008 at SAP in Palo Alto SDForum presented the fourth Green and Clean Dinner “Transitioning Your Career to Green.” Continue reading Dec. 3, 2008 SDF Green and Clean
On December, 2008 SDForumâ€™s Susan Lucas-Conwell held a strategy breakfast for volunteers and visitors. Continue reading Dec. 3, 2008 SDF Breakfast
On December 1, 2008 at the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara, SDForum with the CSPA, Global Sourcing Alliance and Municipality of Wuxi, China presented â€œA Symposium on Software and Outsourcingâ€. Top government officials and executives were on hand to talk about Chinaâ€™s IT outsourcing market and investment opportunities. Continue reading Dec. 1, 2008 SDF China Wuxi
Thursday November 20, 2008 at the UC Santa Cruz Extension Cupertino campus, STC Silicon Valley Chapter hosted â€œ Success Factors for Adopting Structured Authoring, DITA and Content Managementâ€ with Tim Bombosch. Text from DJCline.com. Continue reading November 20, 2008 STC Tim Bombosch
On Monday, November 17, 2007 the Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) held its Annual Open House at Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI) in San Jose. Continue reading Nov.17, 2008 SVEC Open House
On November 13, 2008 at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman in Palo Alto, SDForum presented â€œCrafting a Fundable Roadmap for Your Startupâ€. 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 donâ€™t own your idea, you wonâ€™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.
Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
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
On November 5, 2008 SDForum’s Susan Lucas-Conwell held a strategy breakfast for volunteers and visitors. Continue reading Nov. 5, 2008 SDF Breakfast
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 â€œA New Class of Business User Applications: How They Are Relevant In Uncertain Economic Times.â€ Continue reading Oct. 28, 2008 SDF Venture Circle Dinner
On October 23, 2008 at the UC Santa Cruz Extension Cupertino campus, STC Silicon Valley Chapter hosted Joe Malin, who talked about being a technical communicator at Google. Continue reading Oct. 23. 2008 STC Google Joe Malin
The Good News About The Bad News
There is a lot of bad news these days. Here is the good news about the bad news. Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Oct. 23, 2008 STC Good News About Bad News
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
Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
On October 21, 2008 at the CabaÃ±a Hotel and Resort in Palo Alto SDForum and Astia presented a Clean Tech Breakfast on the â€œNext Generation Biofuel Feedstock” sponsored by Nixon Peabody and Moss Adams. Whatâ€™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
August 1, 1939 Text from DJCline.com
From: John W. Camel
Astoundingly Cheap Science Fiction Magazine
Flushing, New York
To: D.J. Cline
San Francisco, California Continue reading August 1, 1939 Futile History Series 1
On October 14, 2008 in Redwood City at Fish & Richardson hosted SDForumâ€™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 â€œgadgeteersâ€ 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. â€œCool kidsâ€ have more time than money and tend to follow the early adopters. Behind them are the â€œmassive passivesâ€ 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. Donâ€™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 Americaâ€™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.
Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
On October 9, 2008 in Mountain View at the Microsoft campus, SDForumâ€™s Search SIG hosted â€œThe Search for Better Health: Empowering Consumer Healthâ€. 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
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 donâ€™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 investorsâ€™ 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.
Copyright 2008 DJ Cline All rights reserved.
On October 1, 2008 at TechMart in Santa Clara, SDF hosted
â€œCloud Computing and Beyond: The Web Grows up (finally)â€. 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 â€œmainstreamâ€?Text from DJCline.com Continue reading Oct. 1, 2008 SDF Cloud Computing 2