All posts filed under “Announcements

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I got a new job (six weeks ago)

So the reason I haven’t posted here in a while is because I got a new job!

As of about six weeks ago I started working full time with Google as a Strategic Partner Manager, in the EMEA Reseller team. It’s been fun, exciting, and a lot of work and material to learn and (hopefully) master in quite a short amount of time.

If you’re curious what “Reseller” means at Google, here are a couple of links:

Finally, a disclaimer: The views and opinions I post here on my blog are mine, mine alone, and not those of my employer. I don’t (and wouldn’t presume to) speak for Google. (And no, I can’t talk about any cool new stuff that hasn’t been released. Most of the time I only find out about it when it’s released, anyway.)

It’s going to take a while before I get back to posting regularly, but I’ll eventually find the time.

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A Marc Andreessen blog archive

I noticed a few weeks ago that Marc Andreessen had deleted virtually everything off his blog. The only thing that’s left is the post announcing the formation of his VC firm, Andreessen Horowitz.

I’ve been such a huge fan of Marc’s writing, and hated to see so many brilliant and incredibly helpful posts lost. So I went to the Internet Wayback Machine and copy/pasted all the posts they had (through March 2008). I had also subscribed to Marc’s blog via Feedburner e-mail, so grabbed all of the e-mails I had saved to fill in the gaps.

To be clear, I have no ulterior motives other than making sure that Marc’s posts can be found and useful to entrepreneurs everywhere. (And if Marc wants me to take it down, I would reluctantly do so… hopefully he won’t!)

blog.pmarca.comwas like a meteor from June 2007 through the spring of 2008. Here are a bunch of my favorite posts:

Click here for the full archive on pmarca-archive.posterous.com

Some quick cautions and warnings!

  • The link addresses aren’t changed, which mean they’re prefaced by the Internet Wayback Machine archive link. If you look at the link you’ll figure out which part to delete to go to the right address.
  • Some videos have been taken down, or I couldn’t find the embed code.
  • I tried to include every post he made and not filter anything. However, I may have missed a few. Please let me know (via comment below) if you have any that aren’t in the archive.

I hope this is useful to some of you out there. And Marc, if you read this, I’m a big fan and only mean for this to help the millions of entrepreneurs you’ve inspired.

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Cambridge Tech Demo Night – 10 September – CALL FOR DEMOS

After the success of the last Cambridge Tech Demo Night, we’re going to do it again! The next Demo Night will be on Thursday, September 10th, and will be held at Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge.

But we need demos!

Requirements include:

  • Technology-based product
  • Connection to Cambridge; ideally founded or located in Cambridge
  • Able to demo in 7 minutes or less
  • You MUST show the product working
  • Hardware-based products/services highly encouraged. Simply demo as much functionality as you have.

I’d like to have 5-6 demos for the night, each lasting 7 minutes. All in all, one hour celebrating brilliant Cambridge tech.

Info for the night:

DATE: Thursday, September 10th
TIME: 6:30pm meet & greet, 7pm Demo’s start
PLACE: Judge Business School, Trumpington Street, Cambridge
RSVP: Will be posted once demo’ers confirmed

For the companies looking to demo, you’ll have seven minutes in which to show off your product (hardware, software… doesn’t matter) in front of a group of people that want to help you succeed. Find early adopters, investors, promoters, collaborators and potential hires.

For everyone else, get a fantastic look into the technology that’s being designed and built in Cambridge, and the people behind it. Find out the new, interesting tech before anyone else.

Last time we saw demos from Broadersheet, Timetric and True Knowledge. Who’s next?

(Please feel free to comment here, e-mail me at jed.christiansen@gmail.com, or get in touch via twitter at http://twitter.com/jedc)

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Cambridge – putting the pieces together by opening up

LegoMan.jpg

Cambridge is an incredible city for science and technology. For the Americans reading this, imagine if you put Harvard and MIT together and you’ve got a good idea of what Cambridge is like. (With a short note to point out that both Harvard and MIT are in Cambridge, MA… named after THIS Cambridge!) It’s the Ivy League of the UK and Europe, with scientists and engineers that are on par with anything MIT, CalTech, Stanford or Michigan produces.

I’ve been talking with a lot of people about the Cambridge startup ecosystem recently, and it’s been both very frustrating and very invigorating. Invigorating because there are a TON of cool ideas and startups getting going. Frustrating because we still aren’t building links amongst all these companies in order to take full advantage of what’s being developed.

Opening up

One of the themes I keep hearing about the area is that so much of what is done in Cambridge is silo-ed. The University has not just one or two, but a half-dozen groups dedicated to entrepreneurship! (CfEL, Cambridge Enterprise, CUE, CUTEC, etc.) Cambridge Enterprise and St. John’s Innovation Centre provide office space and serve as hubs for startups. The criticism I hear is that even in the “hubs,” most people/companies just work in their own offices, and there’s not a lot of interaction between them… a huge missed opportunity. There are lots of high-tech hardware startups that come out of Cambridge labs, and there are a lot of scary-smart computer scientists building crazy software in their labs. Rarely do these people even talk to each other, but imagine if they did!

We need to start systematically work on opening up the Cambridge startup community. (OpenCoffee Cambridge is just the first step in doing this, though I think a valuable one. But why, as just one example, doesn’t St. John’s Innovation Centre host startup-only BBQ’s in the summer?)

Putting pieces together

Part of the solution to solving this is to get people talking. OpenCoffee helps to connect people and companies, but that’s just once a week. Working in the same space with others would be another great step. I know that Martin Kleppmann has been working on a Cambridge CoWorking space to do exactly this, and look forward to hearing more about that. Let’s face it… all we need is a covered room with power and a bathroom, and internet/wireless access. In today’s market I’m sure there are some offices going spare where the owner would appreciate any kind of income. (Again, this would be even more ideal if both hardware-focused and software-focused startups came together under the same roof!)

Phase 1 – Full Moon Madness Demo nights

The first phase I’m working on is Full Moon Madness Demo nights. These would revolve around themes, and involve demos from both hardware startups and software startups. Five to six companies would have 5 minutes (strictly limited, once decided) to demo their technology. After that ~30 minutes, the rest of the evening the demo companies would be available to do in-depth demos, and the audience could network.

Startups would NOT be pitching their business idea, they’ll be DEMOING their technology/product. Powerpoint will NOT be welcome. By seeing all the technology in person, I hope to build links between these hardware and software companies to build very powerful businesses.

The event would be open to everyone in the tech scene. I imagine that it will start out being Cambridge-focused, but I hope that it will grow to be an event that people come to from across the UK to see the future of technology early.

On a more practical note, as I mentioned in my last post I think it would be interesting to switch around the days of the week. A favourite pub of mine in the US held “Full Moon Madness” specials every Full Moon, year round. I suggest that we hold demo nights on the same schedule, though anything that fell on the weekend would move to the closest weekday night.

Based on that, here are the suggested dates in the coming months:

  • Thursday, April 9th
  • Thursday, May 7th
  • Monday, June 8th
  • Tuesday, July 7th
  • Thursday, August 6th
  • Thursday, September 3rd

I’m thinking of centering the first night around the theme of new media technology. Based on that, I have the following questions for you! –

  • Does anyone have any recommendations for companies that are ready and able to demo next month?
  • Or recommendations for other themes?
  • Does anyone know of good venues to hold a night like this? (I’ve got a few in mind, but would appreciate suggestions.)
  • Does a 7:30pm start sound reasonable?

Future plans

I’m interested in your thoughts of what Cambridge can and should do to invigorate the startup scene. I’ve got a number of things simmering in my mind, but want to hear what you’ve got to say first.