Show of 8-1-2009

  • Email and Forum Questions
    • Email from Mike: Hi Guy. It was great hearing that my first email to your show was discussed!  The show’s format is great & I thought I’d throw a couple of more items your way.
    • Windows 7. I believe that there are two PC operating system markets – business friendly & non-business friendly.  The biggest advantage Microsoft created for itself as it moved into the server market was its ability to centrally manage all of a company’s Windows PCs through Microsoft’s Group Policies.  When Vista launched – it was trying to compete with Apple’s PCs, which did not integrate with Group Policies.  Windows 7 must be a business OS which plugs into Group Policies to be successful.  All other OS makes must create a plug-in module to Microsoft’s Group Policies so that their PCs are just as easy to manage centrally from a server. Best Regard, Mike
    • Tech Talk Answers: Great observation. The integrator of the OS into group policies is essential for any business to maintain a secure and controlled environment.
  • Email from Mike continued: I’m in the process of launching a Web company sometime later this year.  I am finishing up the patent & the programmers should have the first phase completed next week.  I believe that you have talked about how past successful companies have started up on your prior shows – but do you know of a network of angel investors which I could reach out to?  Thanks in advance. Best regards – Mike
    • There is quite a bit on VC activity in the Washington DC area. You need to attend events and practice your elevator pitch.
    • TiE DC (http://dc.tie.org/) has many events to connect entrepreneurs and investors. Crawl/Walk/Run is one of their most popular.
    • The first stage (CRAWL) will address raising capital from angel investors, seed investors and very early stage venture capital firms.
    • It was held July 21, 2009 in Arlington.
    • Venture capitalists invested $3.7 billion in 612 deals in the second quarter of 2009, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association.
      • Quarterly investment activity increased 15 percent in terms in dollars as compared to the first quarter of 2009 when $3.2 billion was invested in 603 deals.
      • The annual total for the full year will be around $12.5 billion.
      • We are seeing increasing deal flow in life sciences, biotech, and clean tech. Internet technologies are on the decline.
  • Profiles in IT: Kevin Rose
    • Co-founder Internet start-up Digg, the social-bookmarking website.
    • He was first claim to fame was on TechTV, co-hosting the show The Screen Savers
    • Rose is known for his Internet start-ups he co-founded: Revision3, Pownce, WeFollow and the social-bookmarking website Digg.
    • He is co-host with Alex Albrecht on Diggnation, a weekly podcast discussing the most popular content submitted to Digg.
    • Robert Kevin Rose was born on February 21, 1977 in Berlin, Germany.
    • Most of his childhood was spent switching between Las Vegas and Russia.
    • He was a member of the Boy Scouts of The Soviet Union and became an Eagle.
    • His experience with computers began at 8 when his father purchased a Gateway386
    • Rose soon got in to the world of BBS (Bulletin Board System) in the late 1980s. Eventually he was running a two-node Wildcat! BBS with shareware.
    • Rose transferred to Vo-Tech High School in Las Vegas in 1992 to study computers.
    • Upon graduation from high school, he attended the University of Oxford, majoring in computer science, but dropped out in 1998 to pursue the ’90s tech boom.
    • After dropping out, he worked for the Department of Energy, at the Nevada Test Site.
    • He later worked for several dot-com startups through CMGI, a venture capitalist.
    • Rose was hired as a technical production assistant for The Screen Savers on TechTV.
    • He became co-host on Screen Savers on March 31, 2004 when Leo Laporte left.
    • One day while having lunch with Steve Wozniak, they were talking about the old days and the groundbreaking things Wozniak did back in the late 70’s.
    • Rose decided that he needed to "do something" and later came up with the idea of a user controlled community-based news website.
    • In the fall of 2004, he withdrew $1000 and paid a web developer $12 an hour to mock up a Web page and purchased some server space for $99 a month.
    • He paid $1200 for the domain name digg.com, and the project began.
    • Digg was a a technology news website that combined social bookmarking, blogging, RSS, and non-hierarchical editorial control.
    • He invested and additional $6000 into the site, which was supposed to be for a deposit on a house for him and his girlfriend. Their relationship broke down.
    • The website was officially launched to the public on December 5, 2004.
    • On May 27, 2005, created Revision3 to focus full-time on producing podcasts.
    • On July 1, 2005, Rose and former co-host Alex Albrecht began releasing a weekly podcast, Diggnation, summarizing the top stories submitted by Digg users.
    • In October 2005, Digg.com received $2.8 million in venture capital.
    • Rose was featured on the cover of BusinessWeek for the August 14, 2006 issue. The cover text was "How This Kid Made $60 Million In 18 Months".
    • Rose can’t find a buyer for Digg. Google looked but passed.
    • In September 2008, the company received a further $28.7 million round of funding led by Highland Capital Partners.
    • On December 18, 2008, BusinessWeek reported that Digg lost $4 million on $6.4 million of revenue in the first three quarters of 2008.
  • Things to Do with an Old Router
    • Don’t throw away your old 802.11g routers just yet.
    • The new slick-looking 802.11n routers may provide higher speeds and performance, but there are still many ways your old gear can help out.
    • Extend coverage by using it as an AP
      • Though wireless routers are designed to connect to and distribute an Internet connection, they can be used just for their Wi-Fi capabilities. In other words, you can use it as an access point (AP) instead of a wireless router. If you have a small network with only a single wireless router, this can just about double your wireless coverage—and it’s essentially free.
      • Place the new AP at a desired location
      • Run an Ethernet from a switch port (not WAN port) back to main AP
      • Turn of DHCP in the secondary AP
    • Relieve 802.11n routers from supporting 802.11g
      • When using 802.11n (or Draft N), it’s best to allow only 802.11n connections on the router.
      • If 802.11g clients connect, they can slow down the newer clients.
      • You’d use the router as an AP, such as discussed above, except you could place it right next to the new router since you aren’t trying to get more coverage.
      • So you can better differentiate between the 802.11g and 802.11n signals, you should use different SSIDs or network names.
      • To make sure someone loaded with a 802.11g card doesn’t accidentally connect to the new router, you can change the default wireless mode to 802.11n only.
    • Make it a repeater to take the signal further
      • Another way you can use an old router to extend your Wi-Fi footprint is to turn it into a repeater. Instead of having to run an Ethernet cable out to an AP, a repeater gets its network connection by listening to the airwaves and retransmitting the Wi-Fi signals between the existing wireless network and the users out of the main coverage area. This is great if you can’t or don’t want to run wires.
      • Though this range-extending technique doesn’t require running cables, it does require flashing your router with replacement firmware. That’s because routers don’t come with the repeater feature out of the box. If you have a supported router, you can use the firmware replacement
      • DD-WRT (http://www.dd-wrt.com)
      • Tomato (http://www.polarcloud.com/tomato)
      • Sveasoft (http://www.sveasoft.com)
  • Mobile Communications Changing Workforce
    • Mobile communications technology has brought longer work weeks and improved productivity, but a survey suggests employees are OK with that.
    • The survey by Kelly Services found 75 percent of respondents said being in constant contact with work through their mobile devices is a positive development, even though about one-third are working longer hours.
    • A key to that is apparently the ability to decide where to work, with 87 percent saying a policy for working remotely is an important factor.
    • About 84 percent of respondents said technology has boosted their personal productivity
    • There is an overwhelming view that the technology provides greater flexibility in working arrangements, and a better balance between work and personal life.
    • Gen Y workers (aged 18-29), are at the forefront of the technology-driven lift in productivity, but Gen X (aged 30-47) and baby boomers (aged 48-65) are each experiencing significant efficiency gains.
    • Across the globe, 35 percent said that new technology has meant working longer hours but more than half (55 percent) of respondents said they are happy with their current work-life balance.
  • FCC Questions Apple’s Decision to Reject Google Voice
    • Earlier this week, we learned that Apple had begun to pull third party iPhone applications for Google Voice.
    • Apple had also rejected Google’s own official Google Voice application submitted six weeks prior.
    • Many accused Apple and AT&T of anti-competitive restrictions.
    • FCC has sent a letter to Apple request the reasons for their decision and whether AT&T has any influence over the decision.
    • This is part of the FCC’s ongoing investigation into wireless handsets and their exclusive deals with carriers.
  • Google Voice
    • Web Address: http://www.google.com/googlevoice/
    • Google Voice offers a service that innovates the way to use telephones.
    • With Google Voice, you get all your calls through a single number.
    • Just add your other numbers to Google Voice and then make your own rules for how your phones ring.
    • You can access and make calls from the phone and the Web, block annoying callers at will, and record custom greetings for different callers or groups of callers.
    • With Google Voice, you’ll get all your voicemails in one place, saved for as long as you want.
    • If you don’t answer a call to your Google number, your callers will be sent to your Google voicemail.
  • Microsoft and Yahoo Agree to Deal
    • Yahoo and Microsoft have announced a long-rumored internet search deall’
    • Microsoft’s Bing search engine will power the Yahoo website and Yahoo will in turn become the advertising sales team for Microsoft’s online offering.
    • Check out Bing at www.bing.com
    • Yahoo has been struggling to make profits in recent years.
    • Yahoo shares closed down 12.1% on the day, while Microsoft shares moved up by 1.4%.
    • In return for ceding control of its search engine, Yahoo will get to keep 88% of the revenue from all search ad sales on its site for the first five years of the deal, and have the right to sell adverts on some Microsoft sites.
    • Yahoo’s search team, meanwhile, will have to brace itself for job losses over the next two years. Some staff will transfer to Microsoft, others can stay on with Yahoo, but redundancies would be unavoidable.
  • What is Competency-based Education?
    • Learning outcomes are defined upfront.
    • Methods to measure those outcomes are defines.
    • Both formative and summative assessment methods are used.
    • Teaching methods are student-centric
    • Competencies are employer-centric
    • Used by Stratford University at all academic levels