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Archive for August, 2007

Balaji Srinivas, Aureos Capital
Balaji SrinivasI would back a first time entrepreneur. But today my first time entrepreneurs are different: they have substantial experience.They are not figuring out their businesses; they are figuring our whether their company will succeed, because they know their business.

I’m not willing to live with the other option, which is: I don’t know what I’m doing but I will figure it out. That is not acceptable to me.

Today what is acceptable to me is: I know my business and I have done this for X number of years, and now I have this idea which is the extension of this business. I don’t know whether it will work or not, but I know the big picture, and I know that I have all the elements. This is what I back today.

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Alok Mittal, Canaan Partners
Alok Mittal40% of our business in the US comes from repeat entrepreneurs. People who have worked with us before like the experience. This implies that the larger part comes from people who are first time entrepreneurs.And we’re very open to backing first time entrepreneurs in the Indian context. Here you see more first time entrepreneurs than in the West simply because the whole model of building a fast-growing enterprise and then exiting is fairly new.
Avnish Bajaj, Matrix Partners:
Avnish BajajI was a first time entrepreneur when I got funded by ChrysCapital. I don’t think the issue is first time entrepreneurs. In fact, if you look at some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, they are all first time entrepreneurs: Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Larry Ellison.Indeed, if you look at the track records of entrepreneurs who have succeeded in their first venture, they typically don’t succeed after that.

In four Interactive, we backed two people and a business plan. One of those guys has been an entrepreneur before, but the other guy hasn’t. The guy who has been an entrepreneur before, started his company in 99-2000 and didn’t have a great experience, because by that time the bubble burst.

But we felt that they really knew what they were going to be doing about the market opportunity, so we backed them.

So yes, absolutely we would look to back first time entrepreneurs. I think it comes back to whether they have a track record of achievement in their lives. It doesn’t have to be as an entrepreneur.

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Google Phone Prototype Out

Google Phone, formerly called GPhone, insanely much awaited Phone will be out soon. The phone will not be available until the next year, as said by people who are engaged in the development of GPhone. The Company said:

The Mountain View, Calif., company has made clear it is serious about developing advanced software and services for cellphones. “What’s interesting about the ads in the mobile phone is that they are twice as profitable or more than the nonmobile phone ads because they’re more personal,” said Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt at the D: All Things Digital conference in May.

A Google spokesman yesterday declined to comment on a Google phone project, but noted: “We are partnering with almost all of the carriers and manufacturers to get Google search and other Google applications onto their devices and networks.”

Google has approached several wireless operators in the U.S. and Europe in recent months, including AT&T, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon Communications Inc. and Vodafone Group PLC, people familiar with the situation say. T-Mobile USA, a unit of Deutsche Telekom AG, appears to be the furthest along in considering it, these people say. Andy Rubin, who helped design T-Mobile’s popular Sidekick phone, now works at Google and is involved in its handset project.

Source: I got mail from on of my Friend Harsh about the news. Thanks Harsh for sharing.

Original Sources are here and here

GPhone Prototypes Images:

Google Phone Concept

Google gPhone Phone concept

Google gPhone Phone interface for search and earth

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Google Phone Concept

Image courtesy of T3

Google phone is coming, believe it or not
People who have seen Google’s prototype devices say they aren’t as revolutionary as the iPhone. One was likened to a slim Nokia Corp. phone with a keyboard that slides out. Another phone format presented by Google looked more like a Treo or a BlackBerry. It’s not clear which manufacturers might build Google wireless devices, though people familiar with the project say LG Electronics Co. of South Korea is one company that has held talks with Google. Google has already lined up a series of hardware component and software partners and signaled to carriers that it’s open to various degrees of cooperation on their part, the people say.

New pictures of the Google Phone: Survey reveals more info about Google phone?

New Google Phone picture

Google Switch Phone

Google Switch Phone

Google Switch Phone by Samsung?

Google Switch Phone

Google Switch Phone

Google Phone concept design by Google Phone [DogOrGod.com]

Google Phone concept design

Google Vision Concept Phone

Google Vision Concept Phone

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Construct a highly available Apache Web server cluster that spans multiple physical or virtual Linux® servers in 5 easy steps with Linux Virtual Server and Heartbeat v2.

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To get the most out of this article, you should be familiar with Linux and basic networking, and you should have Apache servers already configured. Our examples are based on standard SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 (SLES10) installations, but savvy users of other distributions should be able to adapt the methods shown here.

Article illustrates the robust Apache Web server stack with 6 Apache server nodes (though 3 nodes is sufficient for following the steps outlined here) as well as 3 Linux Virtual Server (LVS) directors. We used 6 Apache server nodes to drive higher workload throughputs during testing and thereby simulate larger deployments. The architecture presented here should scale to many more directors and backend Apache servers as your resources permit, but we haven’t tried anything larger ourselves. Figure 1 shows our implementation using the Linux Virtual Server and the linux-ha.org components.

As shown in Figure 1, the external clients send traffic to a single IP address, which may exist on any of the LVS director machines. The director machines actively monitor the pool of Web servers they relay work to.

Note that the workload progresses from the left side of Figure 1 toward the right. The floating resource address for this cluster will reside on one of the LVS director instances at any given time. The service address may be moved manually through a graphical configuration utility, or (more commonly) it can be self-managing, depending on the state of the LVS directors. Should any director become ineligible (due to loss of connectivity, software failure, or similar) the service address will be relocated automatically to an eligible director.

The floating service address must span two or more discrete hardware instances in order to continue operation with the loss of one physical machine. With the configuration decisions presented in this article, each LVS director is able to forward packets to any real Apache Web server regardless of physical location or proximity to the active director providing the floating service address. This article shows how each of the LVS directors can actively monitor the Apache servers in order to ensure requests are sent only to operational back-end servers.

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Source: The image “https://i1.wp.com/www.ibm.com/i/v14/t/ibm-logo.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

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Google is preparing its own distribution of Linux for the desktop, in a possible bid to take on Microsoft in its core business – desktop software.

A version of the increasingly popular Ubuntu desktop Linux distribution, based on Debian and the Gnome desktop, it is known internally as ‘Goobuntu’.

 

 

Google has confirmed it is working on a desktop linux project called Goobuntu, but declined to supply further details, including what the project is for.

 

 

The Goobuntu.com domain has been registered in the past couple of days, though presumably not by Google. It now redirects to a Cuban portal. Perhaps Google will have to think of a new name for the system before they launch it to the wider public. ®

Ubuntu, funded by the South African internet multimillionaire and occasional cosmonaut Mark Shuttleworth, is already emerging as a leader in the desktop Linux world.

It has built considerable momentum in the Linux community, and is starting to appear more widely. Shuttleworth is seeking to persuade white-box PC manufacturers to start shipping machines with Ubuntu preinstalled. Source

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VC Dont Sign

Question: I have heard many times that VCs won’t sign NDAs. When I ask why this is, I’m told that reputable VCs won’t share my ideas with others and/or that my ideas aren’t so special or revolutionary that they would be stolen.

In the real world, VCs talk, they look at many deals, they network, etc. I would think in the real world information gets transferred whether maliciously or not.

I am interested on the true facts about this. Additionally, if a VC already has one company in a space and another company approaches them that is doing something novel and interesting in that same space, what happens?

VC Answer: You are correct – VCs don’t sign NDAs. It’s not that we are trying to pull a “fast one” or do anything nefarious, rather in today’s over-litigious world, it is a necessary protection. The hypothetical VCs worry about is the case where 2 years ago Brad meets an entrepreneur, he signs a NDA on behalf of our firm and he takes a quick look at the business plan. He decides that the deal isn’t for us and we don’t invest. Today, I meet someone different, doing something in a similar space and our firm decides to invest. Despite the fact that Brad doesn’t even remember the plan from 2 years ago (remember, we get a ton of plans over time) and I never saw the first plan, the original entrepreneur sues us, assuming that we must have stolen his idea, when in fact this is not the case.

 

What does happen quite often is that we get a business plan from a company doing something similar to what one of our portfolio investments does. In this case, as soon as I realize this, I stop reading and let the entrepreneur know that we have a similar company and that I’m destroying his plan. The key here is being completely transparent and open.

 

One more thing: We get tons of unsolicited business plans that are marked “confidential.” Keep in mind that you can’t impose a duty of confidentiality sending something unsolicited.

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The image “https://i2.wp.com/knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/india/images/archive/012407_marketshare.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

It’s open season on Microsoft Office. Google is distributing Sun Microsystems StarOffice, a rival productivity software suite, and also has its own web-based productivity suite called Google Docs and Spreadsheets. As part of its iWork suite, Apple has a new spreadsheet called Numbers that could compete with Microsoft’s Excel. There is also OpenOffice, an open source suite built on the same code base as Sun’s StarOffice, along with several web-based products — such as ThinkFree and Zoho — that have been eyeballing Microsoft’s turf.

 

So why are rivals targeting Microsoft’s Office juggernaut?

Wharton professors suggest various reasons:

Just shaving a point of market share from Microsoft, some point out, could be lucrative. Others note that strategically, rivals want to weaken Microsoft’s dominance any way they can. Still others point to the fact that good old-fashioned competition is alive and well in the technology industry, and Microsoft is a worthy opponent on many different fronts.

“Office, even more than Windows, is Microsoft’s cash cow”

Wharton management professor Lawrence Hrebiniak suggests that there is also a little gamesmanship between Microsoft and its rivals. “Another part of the Office fascination is the appeal of going against a giant,” says Hrebiniak. “People want some form of competition.” Google may have additional motives for challenging Microsoft, he says. For instance, Hrebiniak describes Google’s latest effort to distribute StarOffice as more of “a distraction play.” “Microsoft is trying to diversify and attack Google. Google is giving away a rival office suite as a distraction and a way to dent Microsoft. The strategy is not always the most rational between these two. Part of it is a game.”

 

Customers would rather stick to what is known even if alternatives are simple to use. It’s a habit.” It would take vastly improved software from a rival to encourage customers to switch. “You won’t see Microsoft rolling over any time soon.

Microsoft is also working to make Office more valuable, says Silver, by integrating it with corporate software such as its SharePoint Server, a product that allows customers to collaborate, manage content and communicate online. “Microsoft saw a few years ago that Office was becoming a commodity, so it built backend pieces to go with it. The organizations we speak to are most interested in Office 2007 because of SharePoint.”

That strategy may be paying off. Microsoft chief financial officer Chris Liddell said July 19 that the company’s business division, which includes Office, will show annual revenue growth of 11% to 12%. “The first quarter will continue to benefit from strong customer acceptance of the Microsoft Office system,” said Liddell on Microsoft’s fourth quarter conference call.

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Larry Page:

We have a mantra: don’t be evil, which is to do the best things we know how for our users, for our customers, for everyone. So I think if we were known for that, it would be a wonderful thing.

The Star Trek computer doesn’t seem that interesting. They ask it random questions, it thinks for a while. I think we can do better than that.

Basically, our goal is to organize the world’s information and to make it universally accessible and useful.

You don’t need to have a 100-person company to develop that idea.

The ultimate search engine would basically understand everything in the world, and it would always give you the right thing. And we’re a long, long ways from that.

Our company relies on having the trust of our users and using that information for that benefit. That’s a very strong motivation for us. We’re committed to that. If you start to mandate how products are designed, I think that’s a really bad path to follow. I think instead we should have laws that protect the privacy of data, for example, from government requests and other kinds of requests.

We are targeting innovation. We believe mobile applications are essential.

Many companies are under pressure to keep their earnings in line with analysts’ forecasts. Therefore, they often accept smaller, predictable earnings rather than larger and less predictable returns.

Sergey and I feel this is harmful, and we intend to steer in the opposite direction.

We’re trying hard to find user needs that aren’t being met at all.

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I worry, but I’ve worried all along. I worried as we got bigger and there were new pressures on the company. It wasn’t so long ago that we were all on one floor. Then we moved to a new, larger office building and were on two floors. We added salespeople. Each change was huge and happened over a very short period of time. I learned you have to pay a lot of attention to any company that” changing rapidly. When we had about 50 people, we initiated weekly TGIF meetings on Friday afternoons so everyone would know what had happened during the week. But those meetings have broken down because we now have too many people, about 1,000, including many who work in different time zones. We try to have a summation of the week’s work via e-mail, but it” not the same. When you grow, you continually have to invent new processes. We’ve done a pretty good job keeping up, but it’s an ongoing challenge.

We think a lot about how to maintain our culture and the fun elements. I don’t know if other companies care as much about those things as we do. We spent a lot of time getting our offices right. We think it’s important to have a high density of people. People are packed together everywhere. We all share offices. We like this set of buildings because it’s more like a densely packed university campus than a typical suburban office park.

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Related Inspiring Articles of Google Founders

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The Google Guys:  Sergey Brin and Larry Page  – Click To Read Article


They came from opposite ends of the earth to create a billion dollar company that has revolutionized the world. California-based Google Inc. has not only become the Internet’s most popular search engine with revenues of over $6 billion yearly, but the company has also undoubtedly entered the mainstream culture; the verb “to google” was recently added to the Oxford English Dictionary.

Going Global: Google’s Ascent Click To Read Article


Using the BackRub software they had first begun with, Brin and Page re-launched it under the name of Google. The name was chosen as a play on words of ‘googol’, a mathematical term meaning a 1 followed by 100 zeros. They originally used the Stanford University website as the host for their program, with their website being google.stanford.edu.

Lesson #1: Don’t Be Evil Click To Read Article


“We have a mantra: don’t be evil, which is to do the best things we know how for our users, for our customers, for everyone,” says Page. “So I think if we were known for that, it would be a wonderful thing.” From its search technology to its advertising to its own charitable foundation, Page and Brin have striven to create Google after the fashion of their own morals. The company refuses to place advertisements for hard liquor and donates 1% of its profits to charitable causes all in an effort to not “be evil”.

Lesson #2: Look To the Future Click To Read Article


“We are targeting innovation,” says Page. “The dream as conceived 25 years ago has not been achieved. Until software becomes the ultimate tool for collaboration, productivity, and efficiency, the work is not done. And there’s nothing more fun than doing that work.”

Lesson #3: Establish a Strong Vision Click To Read Article


“Basically, our goal is to organize the world’s information and to make it universally accessible and useful,” says Page. “That’s our mission.”

Lesson #4: Take Care of Your Team Click To Read Article


“Our employees, who have named themselves Googlers, are everything,” Page explains to his company’s investors. “Google is organized around the ability to attract and leverage the talent of exceptional technologists and business people. We have been lucky to recruit many creative, principled and hard working stars. We hope to recruit many more in the future. We will reward and treat them well.”

Lesson #5: Focus On the User Click To Read Article


“Serving our end users is at the heart of what we do and remains our number one priority,” says Page. Despite being perhaps the only company in the world whose stated goal is to have its customers leave its website as quickly as possible, Google is no doubt committed to making those customers as satisfied as possible.

Searching for Success: How Google Became Great Click To Read Article


“When Sergey and I founded Google, we hoped, but did not expect, it would reach its current size and influence,” says Page. “Our intense and enduring interest was to objectively help people find information efficiently.” Indeed, for the past ten years, Google has been helping people navigate the Internet and find precisely what they were looking for. From providing people with life-saving information to helping breakdown global barriers, Google’s impact on the world is undeniable. How did two university dropouts transform their simple idea into a billion dollar company?

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