Column

 

  • Unscaling The Trillion-Dollar Power Industry

    Unscaling The Trillion-Dollar Power Industry

    Throughout the history of the power industry, the answer to all of our problems has been to “get bigger”. Due to economies of scale, utilities have concentrated on building larger and larger power plants to increase efficiency and improve profitability. That’s why we still receive the vast majority of our power the way we have for decades — from massive plants based… Read More

  • Achieving Anonymity Online Remains Difficult Despite Evolving Privacy Tools

    Achieving Anonymity Online Remains Difficult Despite Evolving Privacy Tools

    Some things are best kept secret. But when it comes to your online activities, can you ever truly conceal your identity? A variety of tools and best practices can help you achieve some level of privacy when surfing the web, but it is nearly impossible to ensure that your online activities remain completely anonymous. Read More

  • E-Commerce May Not Be The Growth Story Many Believe It To Be

    E-Commerce May Not Be The Growth Story Many Believe It To Be

    The recent surge of interest linking e-commerce to disruption is nothing short of phenomenal. A trend manifested by the rise of Amazon, initially focused on the book industry, has scaled across all sectors of retail. While some believe that 2014 is the year that everything changed and disruption finally arrived on the traditional retailer’s doorsteps, we believe that by analyzing the… Read More

  • Startup Marketing And How Emotion Drives Customer Action

    Startup Marketing And How Emotion Drives Customer Action

    Put down the calculator and ignore the data for a second. Contrary to popular belief, startup marketing is not all about quantitative metrics and growth hacking. It’s time to start mapping out what creates a connection between you and your customer. Specifically, I am talking about driving customer actions by leveraging human emotion through the art of storytelling. Read More

  • A Second Act For The Internet Of Things

    A Second Act For The Internet Of Things

    For the last few years there has been a lot of talk in the venture capital industry about automating the home and leveraging Internet-enabled devices for various functions in manufacturing and the traditional workplace. The first wave of this was the use of the smartphone as a remote control, like the Nest’s ability to allow consumers to control their thermostat using their smartphone. Read More

  • Cloud Storage Is Eating The World Alive

    Cloud Storage Is Eating The World Alive

    “Dead man walking.” That is what many in the storage industry are calling IBM’s storage hardware business. But its storage competitors, including EMC or HP, should not be so quick to wave that flag, as they may follow suit before too long. We are already seeing similar trending signs of their downfall. Read More

  • Investment Banking 2.0 Says “Hello World!?”

    Investment Banking 2.0 Says “Hello World!?”

    David Gelles wrote in the New York Times this weekend about how large tech corporations have been conducting more M&A deals with less input from traditional investment banks. Because of my company’s insight into buy and sell-side M&A interest, I wanted to provide some additional insight into how we see the M&A world changing. Read More

  • Mobile’s “One Game Wonder” Problem

    Mobile’s “One Game Wonder” Problem

    Mobile gaming is a massive success, but it’s notable how many big game makers struggle to convert their successes into longer term franchises or other offerings. This week’s King news is just another example. Perhaps with stronger community features, however, that could change. Read More

  • Algorithms Are Replacing Unions As The Champions of Workers

    Algorithms Are Replacing Unions As The Champions of Workers

    So when I look around the world today and observe who are the next champions of workers, I surprisingly don’t see them where you would normally expect. Unions were once the bastions of progressive improvements for labor, but they have been relegated to defending the status quo and are facing serious irrelevance in the United States today. Politicians as well seem almost ignorant of… Read More

  • Three Trends That Will Make A Difference In Mobile Payments

    Three Trends That Will Make A Difference In Mobile Payments

    In the summer of 2008, I was in Paris delivering a mobile payments presentation to the CEO of a French bank. At the end of the meeting, he asked me when we would see more than 50 percent of retail payments transactions in developed markets go through mobile. With unbending confidence, I responded that within the next five years the majority of consumer transactions in developed markets… Read More

  • No Rest For The Innovators

    No Rest For The Innovators

    If you are in the software business, you have to be cringing at the satirical portrayal of our industry in today’s entertainment media. In HBO’s “VEEP,” Julia Dreyfus’ character Selina Meyer makes a trip to Silicon Valley to court the support of fictional software giant Clovis, run by a 26-year old wunderkind Craig Jeurgensen who is “wipe out the deficit… Read More

  • Bridging The STEM Talent Gap Is Not About Degrees, But Skill Sets

    Bridging The STEM Talent Gap Is Not About Degrees, But Skill Sets

    In 2013, there were 2.5 times as many entry-level STEM-related job postings as there were STEM graduates, according to a study by Burning Glass Technologies. The new U.S. News/Raytheon STEM index shows that student aptitude for and interest in STEM increased just 4% between 2000 and 2010, while data from the National Science Foundation show the number of STEM jobs grew 20%. Read More

  • Do Software Engineers Get Enough Respect?

    Do Software Engineers Get Enough Respect?

    “For software engineers, life must seem like it keeps getting better,” cheerleads CNet. Glassdoor agrees: our median salary is now $85K, and six figures in San Francisco. And everyone predicts that demand for our talents is skyrocketing. So what is one to make of a recent claim that, as a class, we are downtrodden, disrespected, and disenfranchised? …Actually, the guy kind of… Read More

  • What Studying Students Teaches Us About Great Apps

    What Studying Students Teaches Us About Great Apps

    With over a million apps in each the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store, there’s an app—or 10—for practically everything a consumer needs. So why is it in an ever-growing sea of competing apps, some take off like rocket ships while most fade into obscurity? The answer is magic. Read More

  • Why Seattle Is Not Like Silicon Valley

    Why Seattle Is Not Like Silicon Valley

    The stories of Silicon Valley millennials competing, succeeding, and failing spill out of the region faster than most journalists can type. The region excels in the churning out of startups, thanks to the abundance of venture capitalists, the plethora of reporters, and the proximity of like-minded techies. Read More

  • The JOBS Act Progress Report: The Number Of Tech IPOs Can Double By 2016

    The JOBS Act Progress Report: The Number Of Tech IPOs Can Double By 2016

    In early January 2014, there was a widespread concern that the IPO window was going to snap shut. But the chilling IPO winter transformed into an early blossom and the market rebounded. Recently, the soul-searching and spirited talk about the long-term health and sustainability of the IPO market has included much discussion of the benefits brought by the JOBS Act, which two years ago the… Read More

  • Delivery Hero Joins The $1B Valuation Club As It Gobbles Rival Pizza.de

    Delivery Hero Joins The $1B Valuation Club As It Gobbles Rival Pizza.de

    On the heels of Rocket Internet’s food delivery service FoodPanda taking another $60 million in funding, its German rival Delivery Hero is also stepping up its game in a consolidation play. The company today is announcing that it has acquired Pizza.de, another longstanding competitor also based in Germany. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed but we understand from a… Read More

  • The Logic Of Crazy Valuations

    The Logic Of Crazy Valuations

    August is the traditional vacation month for venture capitalists, who stream out of their Sand Hill Road offices to quieter points, ostensibly to reflect on the year so far and prepare for the heavy fall fundraising season. And what a year it has been! We now have several companies valued at around $10 billion and above, including Airbnb, Dropbox, and Uber. Those valuations seem tame compared… Read More

  • The World Of Everything-As-A-Service

    The World Of Everything-As-A-Service

    Over the last few years, it’s become dramatically simpler and more capital-efficient to launch and grow internet businesses. In particular, “X-as-a-Service” providers help startups get off the ground with only a few hundred dollars. Amazon and Rackspace provide on-demand servers that scale to meet hosting requirements, Mailchimp and Sendgrid run high-performance mail servers… Read More

  • Men Initiating Change Is An Important Step Toward Eradicating Tech’s Bro Culture

    Men Initiating Change Is An Important Step Toward Eradicating Tech’s Bro Culture

    The conversation about women in tech is shifting as technology companies begin to hold themselves accountable. Recent moves, such as Google, Facebook, LinkedIn and Yahoo releasing their employee diversity numbers, show an intensified commitment to making real change for women technologists, but the sentiment is not industry-wide. We often hear from tech leadership that they would like to hire… Read More